Wednesday, October 23, 2013

LOUY and Tim's Validation

12x12" oil on canvas


Meet Louy! I so appreciate his pet parents patience, thank you so much. Louy, unfortunately, is also no longer with us. I hope the painting helps to bring his memory closer to those who miss him so very much.

I think I'm beginning to prefer the smoother linen surface to this heavyweight canvas. I think, not really sure yet. We'll see. Wow, that was not a real smooth segue, sorry, but...

Moving on, I'd like to thank you for all of the comments on the palette knife painting! I appreciate them so much! Clearly, I wasn't sure about that painting at all, but the comments and a sale shut me up and steered me in the direction of.... hell yeah! Let's do another! Maybe. I think. We'll see.

And, I know it was a tease and a set up to mention that I couldn't wait to share Tim's validation of his presence while painting his birthday portrait and then not do it, but I couldn't help myself... so I'll dive right in:

First, it should be explained that I have a deep and abiding love for peanuts. In the shell. Roasted. No salt. Love em. And lately, I've been eating far too many of them so I swore, during the painting of Tim's portrait, that I would resist temptation and not buy any.

So I finished painting him on a Friday. Having spent the previous two weeks in the studio with himself and feeling pretty satisfied, I determined that a reward was in order. And what better than a nice, big bag of roasted, unsalted peanuts! Fridays are particularly difficult as I've shared previously, so why not? Have at it Suz, you deserve it.

So at the market, ignoring the siren's call of the seductive aromas emanating from the bakery department, I headed for the produce section...the healthy produce section...and scored a bag of my favorite brand. I can always rationalize that they are indeed good for me, just not in the mass quantities that I enjoy consuming. As I placed the bag on the conveyer belt, I promised me that I would make it last all weekend and not mindlessly chomp away while mesmerized by the flat screen.

Of course, come time to hit the sheets, the bag was all but empty. More than a bit disappointed with myself, I rolled it up and deposited what was left in the kitchen cupboard. Damn peanuts!...I swore to myself, why is that I can't feel this way about carrot sticks, broccoli or even pretzels?

The next day Laura, our friend from the job, was due to stop by for a visit. Since Tim passed, Laura has become a very close and trusted friend. She was, like most of the folks Tim worked with, very upset when he left us and she has been incredibly attentive, kind and patient as I make my way through my days without my best friend's physical presence.

I had emailed an electronic version of the portrait for her to see earlier in the week, so after our greeting at the door, she rushed past me and into the studio to have a look at it. As I joined her, she was excited to share a dream that she'd had the night before but wasn't sure what it meant. Maybe, she said, I could make sense out of it.

In the dream, I was standing in front of the painting and working on it while she stood behind me watching when she heard a voice say..."I was here!" She turned to see Tim standing in the corner of the room! He wasn't clearly solid but she knew it was him and she was very excited and wanted to let me know he was present so she implored him to...."give me something so I can let Suz know you were here!"

With that his arm came forward, now becoming more solid. He extended his hand, palm up, fist closed. As he slowly opened his hand, there in the middle of his palm was a lone peanut, unopened, in the shell!

"That was it!" she said looking confused. "I can't understand why he didn't show me a pistachio nut since you told me those were your favorite!" (which they are but so high in calorie I try to limit my exposure to them).

I too was confused and wondered as well why he would show her a....WHOA!!...WAIT...a peanut?? I ran into the kitchen, retrieved the now almost empty bag and ran back to show her what I had almost finished night before!! I then went on to explain my decision to buy a bag to reward myself for finishing the painting and how I was going to try and not consume them in one sitting.

WHAT??? I was so excited! I cried tears of joy and relief and we both were so shocked all we could do was laugh and run from room to room while Laura kept repeating..."you're're kidding right...are you kidding?" We were both pretty freaked out. So much so that when my friend Jason, the contractor arrived to attend to something, and I began to introduce them to each other, I forgot his name! I'm still apologizing for that!

Now those of you with more rational minds might think I'm making this stuff up or imagining it because I miss him so much. I've always been interested in the mysteries of the other side and now, for obvious reasons, it's become my passion, so each time something like this occurs I go from elated to inquisitive to dismissive and back to elated again, all in the span of five minutes! It's pretty incredible and as much as I need and want these kinds of interactions, it's hard to believe that something you want so very much is right there in front of you and has actually taken place!

The medium, George Anderson, said that anytime there are coincidences, or sightings or feelings and dreams, to accept them as a loved one making contact. He went on to say that it's fine that some folks might think I'm koo-koo. It's not about that, it's about what makes me feel good, what makes it easier to get through the day and know with my heart that Tim is always near and will never leave my side.

What puzzles is my inability to dream and contact him directly although George insists I do but just don't remember. I can see the wisdom in that. I wouldn't do much vertically if I could recall spending time with him in my dreams at night. In fact, I'd most likely spend most of my time sleeping. I only remember two distinct times. One the first night after he left and the second seeing him in a big comfortable chair, laughing during what felt like a party. But that was for just a few minutes and I remember being quite put out that he didn't seem the least bit excited to see me. But, since I'm told we're together most nights, I gave him a pass.

I recently stumbled upon a blog,, maintained by a grieving mom whose son committed suicide in 2009. She chats with him daily through a medium and blogs about what he says about the afterlife. I'm also reading her book, "My Son and the Afterlife." It's fascinating stuff. I've been researching a lot and am bowled over by what I've found and read.

Until one loses someone, it's impossible to imagine how one might react or might try or believe in and do to regain some kind of contact and for me personally, it's about getting through each day with a positive and grateful attitude. It's not about what's believable, what's possible or real or about me being koo-koo or anything else, it's about feeling good, it's about living on and knowing that you'll see that person again, about being grateful and full of joy recalling the time spent together on the physical plane, about embracing what is and accepting and finding peace. This happened! There are no backsies, no do-overs, no if only-ies. I can deny it, refuse to accept it, get angry at the Universe, fate, my own inability to save him, all of which I've done at times, but none of that will change what happened or help me.

Without acceptance there's just darkness. Emptiness. And that's not what this is about. Personally I don't believe that the death of the body is a punishment, some kind of lesson, or a permanent loss. It's just a different state of consciousness. I have horrible spans of time where all I do is cry but it passes and then the sun comes out and I feel him near. I firmly believe that if one maintains an open, kind, giving, compassionate and grateful attitude, our loved ones who've moved on are closer than we can possibly imagine and will find ways to show us just that, even if it's with one single peanut in a shell!

Thanks so much for visiting and again, many many thanks for your patience, interest and kindness. And also again, attempting to convey how much it means to me is just not possible with words.


  1. Sweet Suz
    We feel like we are sitting right in that green grass- touching the soft fur of Louys face.
    Louy's eyes seem to plead to us to play with him- to laugh and enjoy life. That is the feeling that you have imprinted into this beautiful portrait- a joyous spirit! You captured the moment- and it lives forever! It's hard to believe this is a portrait- its just so beautiful.
    We also want to thank you for taking the time to share with us the validation you felt from Angel Tim. Thank you for explaining in more detail what it is we all search for at times of sadness- seeking what makes us feel good each and every day- with an open heart. No one likes the feeling of quicksand around us-- and even though you have many trials and hard times- you spread your wings out for the sun to dry them- and rise above where the good feeling comes from
    Thank you for sharing from your heart and allowing us to feel good too.
    love forever
    your tweedles

  2. Louy is adorable, Suz. Very well done and I know his owners will love it forever. I loved reading about your thoughts on Tim and the hope you are finding. I do not think you are cuckoo at all. You are an inspiration to me.

  3. So well done, my and life.
    You got this.

  4. Wow. Just wow. And you're not koo-koo

  5. Louy is just adorbs! I know it will bring real happiness. Meanwhile your struggles are not in vain...we just keep learning and moving forward, not alone but together in some way.

  6. I LOVE Louy!!! He is so full of life and love. Man, can you express yourself well. I loved reading about you, Tim, and the peanuts!!! That is such an eerie happening - that Laura dreamt about the peanut. And NO, you are most definitely NOT koo-koo. :)
    You are a gunkie though.
    Kath XX

  7. Good morning Friend Suz!... An interesting post! I can't with any degree of honesty say that I hold similar deep beliefs about contact with those passed... though I truly wish that it were possible for my Self to embrace that comfort strategy.

    But... DO live your life "VERTICALLY"... as fully as you can... and Tim would wish you to. Believe whatever... " helps you make it through the Night" and paint your BIG heart out!

    Know that you are never alone... when the studio or your world seems too empty. There are "the living"... who care and wait on the wings to support "You"... if only from a distance.

    "And the beat goes on..."

    Good Fall Painting!

    Much Peace and love from Rockport!

  8. That is such a beautiful thing that happened! There can be no question as to whether it's real or not and I think you would know if it wasn't... Wow Suz! It's a wonderful thing that your heart and mind are so open. If they weren't then you would miss out on all of these amazing signs of his presence!
    I loved this post and the dog, by the way is so adorable! :0)

  9. That Louey looks like a real mischief maker. You've captured his character and I know it will be cherished as a reminder of him.

    Your story of Tim's validation is amazing. Peanuts! Of course! This should be your signature. A little peanut hidden in every painting. :)

    There are indeed more mysteries in the world and outside what we know as everyday life. We can choose to reject them as fantasy or embrace them and let them comfort us. I cannot be naieve enough to believe that our essence does not continue on in some form after we die and the need to comfort those left behind is strong. Tim found a way and you opened a door to make that possible.

  10. Love Louy! The recipients most certainly do too - he is perfect!

    The peanut encounter is excitingly surreal - and I think you have a perfect perspective on it. Your story gave me goosebumps. The dreamworld is so fascinating and the more accepting you are by validating it by studying it more, the more encounters you will probably have - due to your openness. It's nice to know that the medium acknowledges that we see those people we want to see, most nights, we just don't remember it. I love having those long 'story filled' dreams that I can remember...but know there are little glimpses of seeing those who have passed on or are out of my life - due to distance - during the night, too, you just feel it, don't you? Thanks for sharing these intimate views into your loss and grieving process - it is comforting and let's me know - you are OK.

  11. What a wonderful painting of Louy, his parents are certain to be pleased. I loved your peanut and Tim story, so amazing it gave me the chills!

  12. Love the painting of Louy, great as usual!
    Whenever I read your posts about Tim I always end up with a tear or two in my eyes. It wonderful to know that our loved ones are close by and that dream could not have been clearer.
    I too have a love/ hate relationship with a palette knife, great for landscapes and rocks though.

  13. Louy is wonderful; the green really works with him. I find smooth linen takes some of the work out and lets the paint flow.
    The peanut story is simply super.

  14. what a wonderful thing! It makes me so happy to know that Tim is ever-present. This is a fabulous painting....I just think there is nothing you can't paint!!!!

  15. First, Suz, this is a great portrait of a lovely little Boston, and I'm sure it will bring his 'parents' much comfort.
    Second - I TOTALLY believe the peanut dream. I feel my parents with me daily. I have had only a few dreams of them, but have actually 'heard' my Dad, and seen him once on the porch - did a double-take and he was gone, but I swear I did not imagine it. So I believe Tim will always be with you. I believe love never dies, it actually becomes more perfect. I believe these things not because I need to or because I want to… because I FEEL them to be true.
    On a different note- I like the smooth linen better too… just can't afford it! But I"m trying guessing my canvases till the warp and weave almost disappears. Or using small Gessobords, which I love, love, love.
    Peace out, friend, xo

  16. I fully believe that was a real message from Tim, Suzanne...and what a great one! Don't doubt what you know in your gut to be true. If you haven't already read his books, James Van Praagh has some really good ones (my fav of his is "Unfinished Business...what the dead can teach us about life"...also his first book: Talking to Heaven). I also enjoyed "To Heaven and Back" by Dr. Mary Neal. The bottom line is to trust your gut and know that when something like this happens, it's real (even if you can't fully explain it to anyone else) Sometimes the feeling you get is just that you "know". Sorry if this message is a bit scattered...just finishing up my lunch hour and felt the need to say something. (LOVE the portrait too, by the way!)

  17. Louy is fabulous and those eyes pull me right into his happy and loyal soul.
    I am grieving for a friend at the moment so this post is very meaningful.
    When our son was killed I thought I would have some signs or messages because of a previous experience when my father passed. I have felt him close but never had a visual so really envy your experience.
    Thank you for sharing these amazing happenings.

  18. I just loved reading this, thank you for being so open and sharing. Some people are not open at all to communication from our loved ones but I believe the spirit lives on. Wonderful painting too. Hugs

  19. The portrait you did of Tim is amazingly beautiful and alive, Suzanne.In fact I am at loss to find the right words to describe how I feel looking at it.It almost feels like he is physically there!
    And it is so heartening to see you at peace; I am really happy for you.Yes I do believe in what you and your friend experienced..there are things in this universe that no one can explain.Tim is with you and will always be with you because the bond you shared was too strong to be broken by his physical absence.Hugs.

  20. Love the story, Suz. I think we need to found "the Koo-Koo Klub".

  21. Geez we could munch out side-by-side, but I'd want the salted ones... Such a powerful post, my friend! Thank you for sharing. I love that Tim keeps sending you signs that he is truly with you.

  22. firstly, Louy is beautifully painted……..
    but I had to scroll waaaaaaaaay back from your most recent post to get the "whole Story".
    Now, you know that I totally believe all of what you have related and I have aways been a 'life after death' girl and have been reading about it all of my life. I'll be adding your mentioned title and checking out that blog.
    I'm happy for you :D big hugs!


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