LAMENT 1: A PASSIONATE EXPRESSION OF GRIEF OR SORROW | April Brenneman
April Brenneman has lived with her husband in Tigard, Oregon for over 30 years where she has home educated and raised her five children. Since the diagnosis of cancer in her youngest child in 2004, she has been on a personal and spiritual quest to understand her son’s medical journey. The trauma of childhood cancer and the chronic physical and emotional issues of survivorship, for herself as well as her family, led her to the process of writing, blogging and creating art by utilizing her son’s x-rays. These natural therapies serve to bring awareness, healing and wholeness back to her life. In her spare time, she hikes and climbs mountains in her beloved Pacific Northwest.
Artist's note: Lament 1 documents the loss of innocence and boyhood. The dividing line before and after diagnosis hovered palpably in my mind as I painted. The paper collage in the brain represents his childhood, and red, the color of danger, highlights his cervical spine, the sight of his tumor and proton radiation treatments. The red number 4 marks his age at diagnosis. My son's tracheotomy tube is clearly defined with the words “breathe deep,” a subtle reminder to myself of calm-mindfulness.