Whimsical Tree | © Lena Montecalvo
Sometimes when loved-ones pass on—if only we open our hearts—we find they’ve left us gifts greater than anything we could have imagined. Here is a story of one such gift.
Lena has always felt there is more to life than we see with our eyes, so the possibility that her deceased parents might communicate their love to her, even after their deaths, has been easy to accept. As a young woman, she felt and smelled her father’s presence during her deepest sorrow after his passing. In later years, Lena has seen and heard the presence of her mother during some of her most difficult times.
But something Lena could not have predicted is the way her mother would help her make a new beginning and reveal a talent she did not even know she had.
“My mother was a talented artist who didn’t share her work widely. She was a little on the shy side and suffered depression in her later years. Painting water colours and folk art gave her great personal reward and comfort.”
After her mother passed away, Lena wrote her eulogy and concluded with words she’d found scribbled in one of her mother’s sketch books: “Mantra for new beginnings.” Then, needing to know something about her mother’s next journey, Lena consulted a set of rarely-used angel oracle cards.
“I said out loud: ‘Mom, if you want, and if you are able, please help me pull a card that will tell me you’re alright; that you are here with me.’”
Lena shuffled the deck and, “I pulled The Butterfly. I turned it over and read a comforting and completely fitting passage about ‘new beginnings’. It was clear: It was Mom.”
Later, she and her sisters sorted through their mother’s belongings as they prepared to sell her house and give away the things they could not use. For a reason Lena could not explain, she kept the art supplies.
“One night, I decided to try a tiny painting,” she says, and this led her in a direction she could never have predicted: “I had no idea I was able to paint!”
A few years afterward, “I have found I possess a definite and recognizable style, and it makes me happier than anything I have ever done.”
Lena is now an active participant in her local artistic community where she gives art classes and sells her own work. She also makes a few prints and cards of the water colours her mother left behind.
“I know for certain this comes from my mother’s inspiration. I feel her close when I pick up the brush,” says Lena. “It’s a perfect legacy to me.”