|Self portrait, Joyce Owens|
|Eloise Owens, opera singer, my mother|
After the fire. After the divorce. After my childhood changed forever.
I realized I had lost my childhood photos in that fire, except for about three when I quizzed my mother about the lack of photos of me! She reminded me of the fire. How does one remember a life with no images to prove what happened? I remember some things. I recall walking to kindergarten, and kissing Henry or Harry, a boy in my class when my brother pushed us to try. (It was not so great! I still recall the sloppy attempt. I did not want seconds.) I remember my best friend Phyllis who lived next door on a block that had 2 houses facing a lot across the street. We lived on Glenwood Avenue. Without photos/images to reinforce those memories mine are weak, at best.
My mother insisted I understand I had to be able to take care of myself. I had to always be able to stand on my own and make my own decisions. My mother reinforced this, even as she supported me. I figured out what to do to become an artist. It was desire, and it was encouragement from teachers who saw something in me in high school, college and grad school.
|Asian Girl by Kyle F. Anderson, my son, an aspiring artist|