Wednesday, July 10, 2013

An Anniversary . . .

This was the last day we were all together.  It brings tears to my eyes everytime I see it.  We were celebrating my parents 50th anniversary . . . September 14, 2007.  None of of us would have ever imagined that life could change so drastically in the next year. 

And, this is the beginning of how Tippy Stockton came to be.  So I suppose in a way, it was the worst of times and the best of times.  My Dad was suffering from a rare and very fickle cancer - adeno carcinoma of unknown origin.  How do you explain that one?  We really never knew, only that he was given 3-6 months at the time of his diagnosis.  That was December 26, 2002.  He was with us until April 24, 2008, passing just 4 days after his 76th birthday.  My Dad was a dreamer - hoping and praying that his kids would have better than what he had.  No regrets, do what  you love were common quips he passed on to me.  I had spent my adult work life working for others, only to be cast off when something better came along for them.  I always wondered why I had given so much of my heart and soul to my jobs - why shouldn't I give something back to myself.  Have my own gig - that was a scary proposition.  What if I bombed, what if it just wasn't a good fit for me?   At the time I was working for a friend who had ventured out to open a home decor shop in our little town.  I loved that job - I truly did.  But it became clear that it wasn't where I was supposed to be.  I came home from my Dad's service and gave my two weeks notice.  I think it was more that I needed time to mourn my Dad's passing around people who understood what I was going through.  It also was a time for me to focus on my Mom - could I have her come to WA to live with us?  Was I capable of taking care of her? 

Fast forward to a few months after my dad passed away.  I had near daily phone calls with my sweet Mom.  As the days wore on, I noticed that she had trouble speaking - not that she didn't have anything to say, she just had trouble getting the breath to say the words.  Did she have pneumonia, what was going on?  On January 10, I received the call that would turn my world upside down.  STAGE 4 LUNG CANCER.  Too late for treatment - we'll just make her as comfortable as possible.  I quickly flew down to California, never expecting that I would have to say goodbye to my Mom in such a short time.  Seven days to be exact.  I spent the last few days with her holding her hand and recounting stories from my youth.  She even told each of us about the day we were born, and the address to the house where she lived growing up in Jamaica/Queens, NY.  My brother googled the address, and there it was, just like she had told us.  On January 17, 2009, just 8 months after laying my Dad to rest, my Mom got her wings.  I never knew how much I would miss her until the phone went silent.  Our daily calls were no more. 

I can honestly say that I have never been so low - drained emotionally, physically, and spiritually.  I wondered how God could leave the three of us orphans and take my parents so soon.  Those would be the questions I would ask myself time and again as the days wore on.  So here I am . . . no job, no ambition, just depressed.  We had a funeral for my Mom in March of 2009.  I stayed on to help my brothers finalize everything.  The plane ride home was awful.  I felt like I was leaving another life behind - my old life.  I too felt old.  Now I was the matriarch of our family.  That felt really old. 

Upon my return, I came home to this . . .

My dear sweet husband, and my neighbor Jerry were building me a studio.  I had always loved jewelry making, but could I really make a go of it?  I would never know unless I tried. 

And tried I did.  I feel them around me every day prodding me on.  They are here, they will always be here.  On August 1, 2009, Tippy Stockton was born.  The ETSY shingle went up, and I was open for business.  It was a slow start, but boy did my dream come true.  Just two years after that, on August 1, 2011 I opened my own dot com site.  Talk about a leap of faith.  And I owe it all to YOU!  Thank you for loving my work, believing in me.  YOU are who make me so happy - happy to feel alive again and know that this is what God had planned for me.  It was my goal to make people happy and make myself happy again.  And here I am.  Thank you, thank you from the bottom of my heart.  To coin a phrase, YOU COMPLETE ME!  Corny yes, but so true. 

SOOOOO, as a thank you to you, for the past 3 years I have celebrated this anniversary with a SALE.  Starting Friday, July 12 through Friday, July 19 everything on the site will be on sale.  It's my pleasure to offer this to you as a way of conveying my love and thanks for your support. 

1 comment:

  1. Wow I can not imagine losing both parents so close. How brave you are. I too lost my father to cancer just a short while ago - Dec 2010. Thankfully Mom is still with us. I love that you poured your grief, your parents love into something for yourself. I am quite sure they would be so proud of you. I am off to see what will be on sale. Good luck with your sale!!