I walked into my studio after having left Jon at the hospital to have his Heart Catheterization. It was Monday morning and I knew my day would be filled with waiting. Waiting to hear from the surgeon that Jon was ok. Waiting to talk to him on the phone since I couldn’t see him in the hospital, waiting to pick him up and bring him home.
I’m not good at waiting.
As I do every Monday morning, I put my laptop on my desk, but as I plugged it in I saw one little red shoe on my altar.
I closed my eyes and teared up. “Cindy,” I said out loud and smiled.
Since Cindy gave them to me years ago, the red doll shoes have sat on top of the old painted spice box that hangs above the altar in my studio.
Cindy always understood the symbolism of the red boots that found their way into so many pieces of my art. It was something we shared from the beginning of our friendship.
“…I read Alice Hoffman’s “Blackbird House”. I wrote on my blog in 2010. “Very Witchy, (I may have to make Rita a pair of red boots.)”
Rita was my alter ego at the time and she appeared in many quilts and fabric paintings including my quilt Silence Of Aprons, which Cindy bought. I left Rita behind many years ago, but the red/pink boots still appear in my work from time to time.
They are a symbol of my individuality, finding my voice and refusal to compromise my life anymore.
Between Cindy and me, the red boots became synonymous with Dorothy’s ruby slippers and the idea that we’ve always had the power in us to be our true selves.
Cindy died in May.
But I had no doubt when I saw the one red shoe, not on the spice box where it always is, but on my altar that it was a message from Cindy. I believe that since she can’t text me anymore (although I did get a call from her cell phone, without a voicemail, shortly after she died) she communicated in a way she could.
It seems to me that Cindy was letting me know that she was thinking of me. And what a comfort it was at that moment to hear from her.