Sunday, 15 September 2013

Going Bald for AGD. Come and join the party

Outside my window this dark September evening, a storm is raging.  I see through the rain and wind the shapes of the hollyhocks lashing out and smacking anything that comes within nine foot.  I am cosy, tonight I have put on the heating, and I feel the desire to curl up under the sofa and go to sleep for eight months.  I am amusing myself thinking of my hollyhocks as Guard Hollyhocks.  Charming, but lethal.

A Graceful Death and Sounding for the Soul, how did it go?

The event was dedicated to the memory of Julia Wilson, who died on the 9 August.  Julia had Motor Neurone Disease, and allowed her image and her story to join A Graceful Death.  I am privileged to have met and worked with her, and thank her, wherever she is, from the bottom of my heart.

The venue was donated to us through the kindness and support of the Bognor Regis Lions, a fund raising charity here in Bognor.  Thank you to our hosts for the wonderful day.

A lovely group who listened here and later on, were given the most spectacular Sound Bath and workshop in sound therapy
It was a small but vibrant group of people that came our way on Saturday.  Some people had to cry off at the last minute but we know where they live and they will be summoned to another workshop event very soon.  Sarah and I set up with the help of Jackie, sitting on her chair on the left, and my daughter Fancy Girl, and her friend Sweetheart Girl.

Here we are posing professionally, calm and sensible before the event started.  We pose by one of Sarah's gongs and next to some of the Tibetan singing bowls.
Thank you to all who came, thank you to all who helped and thank you to all who spoke of their own stories, which never fail to impress and move me.  Sarah's Sounding for the Soul workshop and sound workshop was a very powerful and interesting session.  Some of our group were not at all sure that this was a sane thing to do, but by the end of the sound session and sound bath, as I knew they would, they were deeply in love with the gongs.  All in all, a very sound experience ho ho ho.

Going Bald for AGD

The next event is only days away!

Our super duper poster designed by Graphic Designer and super duper friend Rhona Reedie

This coming Friday, the 20 September, Jackie here is having her hair shaved as a fund raising event for A Graceful Death.  Jackie is undergoing chemo for her cancer, and despite feeling rough, has offered to do this at the Walnut Tree pub in Runcton.  Being party kind of girls, Jackie and I have decided that the best situation in which to shave a lady's hair, is at a knees up.  And so, you are invited to the Knees Up, this coming Friday 20 September, from 7 - 11pm, entrance free, for a laugh and a lot of cheering for Jackie. Come early and eat, the food is excellent.

Dave from the Walnut Tree in Runcton has offered us the use of the side room in his excellent pub,  We are having a pub quiz, entry fee probably a quid, the winners of which will win prizes and admiration.  Jackie's hair is being shaved by young local hairdresser Paris from Simply Hair here in Bognor.  The Raffle will offer up the following prizes -

Balloons have been donated by Theme Party Fancy Dress in Bognor -

  • A box of fancy cup cakes from the creative and delicious Kirstie's Kitchen here in Bognor
  • A bottle of wine from Grande Wines in Bognor
  • A basket of fruit from Runcton Farm Shop in Chichester
  • A three course meal at the Walnut Tree Pub in Runcton
  • A cut and blow dry from Paris, at Simply Hair in Bognor, and our star head shaver for the evening
  • A pair of beautiful and colourful hand made earrings made by me 
  • Four bottles of beer donated by our Star of the evening Jackie
  • A bright and colourful painting of a fun angel from my studio
Going Bald for AGD is raising funds for the continuing of the A Graceful Death work and message.  The A Graceful Death exhibition creates a space and an opportunity for us to address how we approach the end of life.  The people who are painted in the exhibition tell us how it is for them, and show us that dying is something that can be done.  Dying is normal, and many of the sitters long to tell their stories to help others face their fears, and share with us their image in the portraits.  The portraits are honest, powerful, raw and full of love.  A Graceful Death's message is that until we are dead, we are very much alive, and it is that life that the exhibition and project aims to celebrate, especially as someone is dying. All money raised goes to help take the exhibition out into the community to raise awareness of what it means to die, and what it means to be living well right up until the end.  

I work too with people who need an end of life companion, at whatever point during their final journey.  This work is not part of the exhibition unless requested, this is private and one to one, and entirely for the person, and sometimes the families too.  For this work, I come and visit for as long or as short a time as is requested of me. This is very precious work, as sometimes time is of the essence.   

Come to the event at the Walnut Tree, join us for a knees up and perhaps, win the pub quiz (Alan is the hard task master running the pub quiz, you will have to sharpen your brains.  He won't let you win easily)  You stand a chance of winning a raffle prize, and if it is seriously your night, you may win them all.

And now, before I go, let me tell you that last night, my friend Stuart who is part of the exhibition, stayed with me after the exhibition.  What did he bring me?  A hollyhock in a pot.  I shall plant it in an area where it can't reach anyone. I love hollyhocks, and Stuart is a treasure for bringing me one.  Thank you Stuart. (Bam  from the hollyhocks outside).

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