I have a great job. Not only do I get to work with some of the finest artists that I have ever met or known. I get to work in an art gallery. I get to paint and show my art in the gallery. I get to meet potential guest artists and see new works. I get to write and post on our social media accounts. I also get to write our monthly newsletter (that you can sign up for, just email me), draft and submit our press releases, and work on this website (includes writing this blog). I even get to choose the subject matter!
I'll admit, most of the time I enjoy writing about art and artists. Sometimes, I will do some researching on artists who may have been an inspiration to one of our member artists or featured guest artists.
However, since we are quickly approaching the Holiday Season and Thanksgiving is just a couple of weeks away, I wanted to take a moment to express some of the things that I am thankful for.
In September, after going through some tests it was discovered that I needed quadruple bypass surgery. My absence resulted in Gallery 1001 pulling out of events like the Walnut Valley Festival and Art in the Park as we did not have the manpower to operate either since I was incapacitated.
This last week, I was finally able to return to the gallery and get back to the daily business. I would be remiss if I didn't state how very grateful I am to my fellow members of Gallery 1001. The trust they have placed in me. Their patience, understanding, and support. Their taking up the slack by assisting me with things that I still cannot do has helped considerably in my recovery.
I am very grateful to the surgeon and staff of Kansas Medical Center. Although I was unaware of any problems with my heart prior, they did save my life.
I am so deeply grateful for my wonderful wife, the care and love she has provided throughout my recovery. I am grateful for my family in Kansas for their support and assistance. I am grateful to my family and friends back in Arizona and across the country, and for all of my friends online. wherever they might be, for their love, support, thoughts, prayers and well wishes.
But there is a special gratitude, one that I have not recognized in quite some time. As I was in my hospital bed after surgery, I began to think of all the events that led to this point. I thought deeply about the tests that were being performed (which were unrelated to a heart issue), but were what brought me to this hospital bed. It hit me that had it not been for these tests, the discovery of an issue with my heart, the quick response and care provided seem to me to might not have been noticed until it as too late. I felt that this had to be much, much more than just coincidence. I'll be the first one to admit that I am not a deeply religious man. In fact, I have openly stated that I am an atheist. Hell, I'm a Reverend with the United Church of Bacon which is a "church" organized by skeptics and atheists. But I could not shake this feeling that there had to be something more going on. Call it God's will or Divine Intervention, but this had to be more than happenstance. So, for this, the healing process and for the rediscovery of a faith that I had thought long lost, well, suffice it to say that I am truly grateful!
On behalf of Gallery 1001, may you and yours feel the joy of togetherness and love this Thanksgiving. May we give thanks to the memories of those no longer with us and take comfort in the lives we shared. May we reach out to those who are away with an expression of love and thanks for who they are. Finally, may you all have a safe, wonderful, and a truly blessed Thanksgiving.