Tuesday, August 10, 2010


I took these photos last week, while in the midwest visiting family. To me it was an incredibly healing trip, completely unexpected & both a sad & joyous occasion. My aunt Jan has been dealt an incredibly difficult hand (several really)- having had cancer four times & i was called home to gather at her bedside in a circle of love. She was expected to only live a few days.

When I arrived she was curled up in her hospice bed, pale, almost white in color, with this incredible glow around her-she was very much on her way out. I felt incredibly honored to be that close to the dying process. I cant quite describe how she looked-- if it had been appropriate i would have taken a photo. She was so incredibly beautiful- achingly similar to the incredible bunch of white roses by her bedside-- pure, holy and ephemeral.


A friend of hers, put our family up in her home- where she had a small garden, with some gorgeous echinaceas, referred to in the midwest affectionately as "coneflowers"- considered an ornamental. What struck me about seeing one of my favorite plant allies line the urban landscape is that medicine is all around us. And while i give many thanks for the possibilities that have been given to my Aunt that have helped her live an incredible life-- I feel even stronger in my convictions that I want to help people be WELL and celebrate life... and know good health.... from the ground up. It starts now... by honoring our land. Honoring our bodies and nourishing & supporting LIFE.

Meanwhile, I post these images, as a prayer and as a tribute to my beautiful Aunt, whose health has improved dramatically in the past few weeks and who is still shining bright. Please hold her in your hearts- and the spirits of all those who are sick and suffering. May they feel the depth of beauty and peace... and feel deeply loved in and beyond life. May the power of earth mother never be forgotten and always honored, as we are born of and return to her.


  1. Laurel, what a beautiful and heartfelt tribute ~ thanks for sharing. I hope she gets better. Your pics and words sure uplifted me.

  2. I'm happy to hear that your aunt did get better. I will hold her in my heart. Beautiful photos.

  3. A beautiful tribute to our Jan.
    She was surrounded with much love and has now moved on with grace & ease. We hold her memory & the blessings of being with her in her final weeks on this earth in our hearts.
    Thanks sweet Laurel. xo Mom

  4. Laurel,
    What a beautiful and heart wrenching post. It seems that sadness and beauty are always hand in hand - helping to balance each. Thank you for your heartfelt sharing.