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My heart sinks;  is one of ten abstract paintings in 'Letters to my teenage son' series. 


It is acrylic and oil on wooden panel in a white wood grained frame. 

It is strung for wall mounting and is 28 cm by 28 cm, including frame.


This body of work is auto ethnographical and documents a particularly challenging period of parenting. 


The door slammed and the hood went up – pulled tight to hide your shame- your fear – to conceal your 6ft 7inch frame from the outside world. My heart sinks – not a slow sink but a rapid descent like a rock into a pool. I wanted you to turn around – to smile at me – to let me know you aren’t lost to me – but for now you are.

I check each morning that you are there – I test for you breathing – as I did when you first came to us, (and I have done this ever since). Bed again with your teeth un-brushed – your socks on. They have been on for 3 days – I am under no illusion they will be changed today. I turn off your light so I can keep the peace for a few more moments – for now I can breathe.

My heart sinks


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