Great-Grandmother said that WINTER is the time to best see the great distance before us and the soul of the trees at the same time. One compelling us forward. One connecting us to place.
I think that the greatest potential for growth and development exists when dualistic forces such as these come together.
Minnie Hoilman was my Great Grandmother. She was a mother, homeopathic healer, farmer, a craft artist, painted nudes, wrote poetry and drove a red sports car on mountain roads into her late 90’s. Minnie encouraged me to find my unique spirit and speak my truth. She was married at age 13 and had her first child (my grandmother) at age 14. She embodied strength and grace in an era before women could vote.
As a healer, her voice counted in the community. As a mother, she cried in silence. As an artist, her soul flowed into curving lines that expressed the life around her. The winters are long here and she used the time to paint. After developing an allergy to her paints, I wondered what would occupy her days. I ask her to write a journal for me. In a simple brown, top-spiral notebook, I can see her life as a youth living in a deep mountain holler, expressed through her colorful words. She embraced every season of life and mirrored the best it had to offer.