A Mother’s Journey

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Mental illness affects one out of every four families, hence there is a need for it to be addressed. Mental illness can affect anyone. While some illnesses have a genetic risk, mental illness can affect people of all ages, races and income levels whether or not there is a family history. Society must be informed as to the facts and be open to communication. Because it is a “personal” problem society in general does not want to get involved. Stigmas continue to grow, budget money is reduced, and people who suffer from mental illness are swept under the carpet, again.

Years of planning and creating have culminated in this art exhibit. It was a goal and mission which at times because of my own depression was in jeopardy. My quest is to have the exhibit travel to galleries conferences, and museums. This work is about a vital issue impacting so many of us in a very personal way.

The total exhibit includes 30 works of 2d and 3d art, focusing on four areas:

  • Social stigma and issues of mental illness
  • Our own dreams of a healthy child versus the reality of raising a child with a mental illness – It’s a roll of the dice!
  • Reflections of my struggles with my son’s mental illness and my depression
  • My refuge, through faith and nature which I experience at “Low Tide”

Much of my own “psychotherapy” comes through the time that I spend working on my art. During bouts of depression the work sits, rejected and separated from me. Uncompleted work is a constant reminder of the goal I set, yet haven’t reached. That goal is two fold. The first is to continue using the talents given to me. The second, to let others know that it’s ok to talk about, acknowledge, and share their own experiences with mental illness. For me, every work holds a special connection for each has its own story. The viewers will connect to the work on a personal level, feeling and seeing my story.

It is a roll of the dice as to who may be affected by mental illness. Involvement with groups, like NAMI, and giving one another support is crucial in breaking the stigma mental illness carries. Experiencing “A Mother’s Journey” has lead many individuals to realize that they are not alone, and they begin to talk.

Thank you for your interest in my quest,
Maxine Seelenbinder-Apke

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