This is what it feels like to finish cancer treatment! I did it. I survived. I am humbled and ultimately a better person because of it. And, yes, it sucked. I am still a little angry about the whole thing, actually, but just a little bit, deep down where I hardly notice it anymore.
Now is where the fun part begins. I get to live again. I might not be base jumping any time soon, but I’ve started moving my body fast enough to feel my heart-beat again. This is a quality of life improvement that I am ready to fully embrace.
Thank you for reading this. Thank you for caring. On this Thanksgiving I have a lot to be grateful for. Mostly, I am thankful to be alive. I am thankful to have the ability to think about putting sweaters on wild animals. I am thankful to have the time to wonder, who was the first animal to be drawn with a sweater on. Was it Winnie the Pooh? Goofy? What is Goofy, anyway? These are the questions I am grateful to be able to ask on a Thanksgiving morning, because I am still here. I am still alive, and I am hopeful that with each new day I will put a little more of my fears and insecurities behind me.
To see more pictures of animals in sweaters, if this interests you, click here.
I am thankful that I have time to draw this penguin in a sweater. That I can put aside everything else and simply indulge myself in an idea and put pencil to paper and create it. I don’t know why I wanted to do it, but I did it, and you know what? It made me feel happy. Sometimes I get so consumed by the challenges of each day, the work that needs to be done, the goals that are still to be met, that I forget what the point of it all is anyway. Everyone might have a different reason for living, but, for me, today, it is to create a little “penguin-in-a-sweater” happiness.
Deep in my heart I’ve been wanting to write a Children’s Picture Book about global climate change and our role as stewards of this beautiful planet we live on. I’ve been waiting for a story to come to me ever so patiently. Then, just yesterday it appeared! As I sat in my backyard and wrote in my journal next to my favorite tree, the words came through my hand and I don’t even really know how. I believe it may have been from a source outside of myself. It felt like an out of body experience. I love it when that happens!
As a writer I find it embarrassing that I was never an avid reader as a kid. I was much more interested in going outside. It didn’t really matter what I was doing, as long as it was outside. Mostly, I wandered. I looked at things, smelled flowers, tried to talk to the birds, and when I felt really brave, I would lift up a rock and see what I might find hiding underneath. I didn’t really become a recreational reader until I graduated from college.
I’m facilitating a collaborative mural project for the Discovery Children’s Museum! On Saturday, August 3rd from 10am – 1pm we will be in the Discovery Lab working on a visitor-created piece of collaborative art in celebration of Art Appreciation Month at the Discovery Children’s Museum here in Las Vegas. I’m so excited to be a part of it.
My sons and I have been crafting a story about our cat since summer break started. This morning we had a brainstorming session and they helped me come up with this character sketch. It’s actually kind of funny, because our real Frida is terrified of thunder and lightning (or as we call them, the “Boom-Booms”).
I felt well enough today to write a blog post! Yay! Chemotherapy treatment for Breast Cancer is no picnic, but I did manage to get out to Mt. Charleston last weekend. It was a little frustrating because I could only make it to this little creek. I didn’t even make it all the way to Little Falls, a hike I normal would consider a “baby hike.” With anemia and general fatigue weighing me down at 7,000 feet, I just didn’t have it in me. But it was nice to just sit and listen to the water flow. I am reminded that I too am in the flow of healing.
A lot of what I’m going through emotionally reminds me of when I was pregnant. So much scaling back of all the things a normally love to do. Although I won’t get a beautiful baby out of this deal, I do hope to gain a life in remission from cancer.
My creative projects have had to shift to a glacial timeframe of development as well. This is especially dangerous for a person like me, because when I’m lying down, I think of new things I want to create. I have a growing list of projects I want to initiate, develop and complete once I get through this year of treatment. Even as I am waiting this time out, I am grateful for the experience. Cancer has given me a new awareness of who I am and what I’m here to do. Yes, there is always a bright side, even to cancer.
Abigale is an antelope squirrel and she wants to know where the water comes from and where it goes. She’s also the main character of my new book, that will hopefully become available this summer. Just wanted to share with you a sneak peak at her. Here she is going for a ride on her friend Blu’s back. I wish I could do that! Imagine all the things you could see from up there.