'Poppa's Bunnies'

'Poppa's Bunnies'

(Note: This blog was written for my old site but since I am now offering this print as a Greeting Card I thought it might be nice to know the story behind it all...)

"Poppa's Bunnies"

On November 11, 2011 my husband and I walked up to the tomb of the unknown soldier in Ottawa to pay our respects and lay our Poppies with the others. My father was very near that day. He was a WWII veteran who was 22 months at the front...through Italy to Ortona and then up through Holland before coming home. Total service: 5 years; 4 months and 19 days. He would not speak of it for years but when I was about 16; I noticed that he always slept with the blanket pulled up over one ear. Curious, I asked him why he always slept like that. He explained a little about his time overseas and said that that is how he use to try to sleep over there... to try to keep the noise out. It had just become a habit.
My Dad had a difficult life from early childhood onwards. He was a dear, gentle, patient, understanding soul who was my best friend. He would constantly remind me, even in the later years when he was full of pain, that in each and every day there was a gift for all of us. You'd have to open your mind and heart to find it some days... but, it would be there. It bothered him terribly that he was not there for me when I was small. No matter how often I tried to tell him how much he meant to me; I felt that I really wasn't reaching him.
One day I sat down at my easel and started to draw. I drew with my heart and soul hoping that I could convey to my father how I felt. It was Christmastime and I couldn't get home that year but I completed the picture of the Poppa bunny and the little bunny snuggled together by the tree...making sure to pull the edges of the blanket carefully over one of the Poppa rabbit's ears so he could get a restful sleep...
I sent the drawing home with a small note to him saying; "Poppa...this is the way you make me feel. I love you." Well, when my Dad opened the drawing and read...They told me that tears came to his eyes. When I spoke to him later that morning and I asked him if he now understood; he said, "Yes, dear." And from the sound of his voice; I knew that to be true. After I hung up the phone; I was very quiet for a long, long time...my "cute" little drawings, that I had not held in much esteem after having heard some dismissive remarks about such work not really being 'art' per say, had left my hands, lay in another's and touched their heart more soundly in one instant than a lifetime of searching for just the right words...

(I am offering this very special print as a greeting card - you can find it in the StoppenShop under the Seasonal Greeting Cards section).

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