The Artist’s Way

April 29, 2009 by in category The Artist Way tagged as , with 7 and 0
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“All artists must learn the art of surviving loss: loss of hope, loss of face, loss of money, loss of self-belief.” – Julia Cameron, THE ARTIST’S WAY.

In November of last year, my widowed mother was diagnosed with mid-stage Alzheimer’s. In January, she required a full-time caregiver in her home. In late February, she suffered a psychotic breakdown and had to be admitted to a secure facility. Thanks to a change in medication, she has come back around but her memory is deteriorating rapidly. In some ways, she is not aware of losing track of minutes, days, weeks. For the rest of the family, it is sad and frustrating and stressful.

While cleaning out my mother’s house, I found a poem titled “Don’t Quit” that she had tucked into a drawer. Ironic, yes. Her mind is shutting down. Her eyesight is failing from cataracts and glaucoma. The neurologist is concerned that she is beginning to show signs of renal artery failure. And yet here is this scrap of paper with words of hope. I don’t know when she clipped it. Or from where. It could have been years ago. Maybe it helped her hang on this long. She’s 88 years old now. Her mother was only 62 when she had died of complications from Alzheimer’s.

When I decided to share the poem in my blog this month, I discovered that it ties in nicely with Debra Mullin’s blog entry on yesterday’s A Slice of Orange, in which agent/author Lucienne Diver states: “Don’t give up and don’t let rejection get you down. Rejection is part of the process. . . . you’ll never make it to the goal if you get disheartened and stop along the way. “

Don’t Quit

When things go wrong, as they sometimes will
When the road you’re trudging seems all uphill
When the funds are low and the debts are high
And you want to smile, but you have to sigh
When care is pressing you down a bit
Rest if you must, but don’t you quit.

Life is queer with its twists and turns
As every one of us sometimes learns
And many a fellow turns about
When he might have won, had he stuck it out.
Don’t give up though the pace seems slow
You may succeed with another blow.

Often the goal is nearer than
It seems to a faint and faltering man;
Often the struggler has given up
When he might have captured the victor’s cup;
And he learned too late when the night came down
How close he was to the golden crown.

Success is failure turned inside out
The silver tint of the clouds of doubt
And you never can tell how close you are
It may be near when it seems afar;
So stick to the fight when you’re hardest hit
It’s when things seem worst that you mustn’t quit.

– Author Unknown

Until next month . . .

– Gillian Doyle


  • Anonymous
    on May 5, 2009

    Thank you, Bobbie! Happy Birthday to you, too! 🙂

  • Anonymous
    on May 3, 2009

    What a perfect poem for all us who write. Thank you for sharing it with all of us. Prayers for your mother.

    Happy Birthday this month, too.


  • Anonymous
    on April 29, 2009

    Hi Lori. Thank you for the hugs. It is a very surreal journey, to say the least.

  • Anonymous
    on April 29, 2009

    Thanks, Kathy. I’m glad you liked it. 🙂

  • Anonymous
    on April 29, 2009

    Great poem. Hugs on the journey with your mom.


  • Anonymous
    on April 29, 2009

    Wonderful post! And the Artists Way is my number one favorite book for inspiration. It’s a way of life.

  • Anonymous
    on April 29, 2009

    Wow, what a great poem! I hope you’re going to hang on to that 🙂

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