This year we’ve adapted the ways in which we gather. Following health guidelines, important support groups–churches, addiction services such as AA, NA, SA, and gyms–all closed. We not only lost loved ones to the virus of COVID, but we also lost loved ones to the metal health repercussions of being isolated. We lost them to addiction, to depression, to loneliness. I created these circles on the Oregon coast using found jasper in honor of the gatherings we have lost, the communities we have gained, and ties we have strengthened. At the same time, they serve as a remembrance of the people who will not be returning to our circles when it is safe to gather in-person once again.
First published in Parentheses Journal, Issue 11, Spring 2021.