My daughter Lisbeth suffered a traumatic brain injury when she contracted a viral illness in 1988 at the age of six, and she continues to be challenged by multiple difficulties including uncontrolled seizures, behavioral disturbances, learning disabilities and developmental delay. Despite these challenges, Lisbeth's mighty spirit and creativity are remarkably intact. She creates extraordinarily beautiful cut paper snowflakes - hundreds of them (it is ironic that a cluster of seizures is called a "flurry...") and like real snowflakes, each one is unique. Lisbeth sometimes refers to her creations as "brains," which is poignant, for in the making of each snowflake/mandala, it is as if she is recreating her brain. Lisbeth sees figures, animals, and objects in the cutout shapes of each one of her designs, and says that these are what the brain is thinking!
Lisbeth lives in her own home with her cat, Little Milkweed.
Click their picture to learn about Independence Association, the amazing agency that makes this possible!
The Good Doctor
Dr. Gregory Holmes, neurologist, and Lisbeth. Click on this picture to learn more about the neurology program at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center.
Vagus Nerve Stimulator
Click this pic to learn more.
Click this pic and visit the incredible Spindleworks!
The Normal One: Life with a Difficult or Damaged Sibling
Click this pic of Lis and Sister Kait to read about Dr. Jean Safer's book!
Not Bad Thing (not necessarily bad), You Do Know (ya know?), The Right Way of It (to do things correctly), The Wrong Way of It (to do things incorrectly), True (what is real and right -affirmative), Silly Way of It (silly), Funny Way of It (funny), Mmmmm Hmmmm, Mmmmm Hmmmm, Mmmmm Hmmmm (yes), All the Ways of Lisbeth Miller (understanding Lisbeth's condition and caring for her appropriately).
It's left in my brain (I remember), It's not left in my brain (I can't remember), Hard to know (Hard telling not knowing, I don't know), Guys couldn't believe it! (incredible!), All the Year and Month (all the time), Doing the Funny Joke (kidding around), THIS way (inserted in sentences repeatedly, emphasis on THIS. not sure I can translate this. It's in the realm perhaps of, Do you follow Me?)
I am an artist, an art teacher, a mother of five children, and a grandmother of four, and I live with my husband and our two cats in the woods of Woolwich, Maine. I teach drawing classes through the Continuing Studies Department at Maine College of Art in Portland, and now privately in my new (!) studio @ 72 Front Street, Bath. My blog 'Martha Miller' shares my art, my process, and my inspirations, and my blog 'Not Bad Thing' showcases my daughter Lisbeth's artwork and process. It is also where I share my experience as a mother of an adult child with special needs. You can see more of my artwork on my website @ www.marthamiller.com