Thursday, May 02, 2013

May! Give-away

I can't help but wonder what this year will bring into my life. It was one year ago this month that I knew I had cancer even before the diagnosis was given to me. The radiologist who told me said that everyone I'd met at the mammography center knew that I'd get through it, "just a detour for you. It's your attitude that will see you through." Perhaps I come across as having a good attitude but if they really knew how I felt inside I doubt I would have been told that. I can honestly say that I didn't expect to be here a year later. But here I am, still standing!

 The image in the mirror is very foreign to me; it's as if the former me has been replaced by someone who now has silver curly hair. Gone is the blond who prefers shoulder length hair and the face that now greets me has become thinner and more wrinkled due to weight loss. I tell myself that change is good and that life is good, but my voice isn't very convincing. I did say that going through chemo and radiation would not only be like a tsunami but would give my immune system a clean slate on which to build a new one. Did that also mean a new body? Perhaps I wasn't clear about what I expected. I knew that presenting myself to the world with only one breast wouldn't be easy but I didn't expect to age so much as well! My energy levels are even lower than before and that was expected but not welcome. Too many days spent resting make for frustration and huge doses of self-pity. And so it goes . . .

There is always much to celebrate and I choose to do that most of the time rather than throw a self-pity party. I can't remember the last time I had a give-away. What better way to celebrate being alive than by giving away something that I've enjoyed creating? Fractured Grids. These studies are 5x7 inches done on mat board. They're not framed in the photo below, but I'll pop them into black frames before sending them out. Leave me a comment by the end of May letting me know which one you might enjoy, 1,2, or 3. Just yesterday according to the count of Blogger Dashboard there were over 30 visits to this blog. I don't know when the counter stopped, but visits are still noted on the Dashboard and to date there have been nearly 21,000. (Note: the counter still listed on the side of the posts notes world-wide visits. Can't remember when I added that counter but the total isn't accurate.) It would be outstanding to hear from many of you.

Follow the path of your appetite, your desires, and your secret wants.
- Mama Gena


Kay said...

Gail, I have been out of the blogging thing this past year, and didn't know about your diagnosis and treatment. I can only imagine what you've been facing, but I admire your spirit, and your commitment to your art. I hope to visit you again in the future, more frequently.

Penny said...

I am so glad ou are still here you have been an inspiration.
I never recognise myself in the mirror, thats not me, that round elderly person!
I would love to own one of your works,dont mind which.

Vicki W said...

A great attitude contributes so much to the healing process. Aside from the grays it looks like you made it through the ordeal beautifully! I hope the next 12 months are filled with art and love and less doctors!

Julie said...

You have come so far in the past year and deserve to celebrate and in another year you will have recovered more of your verve and probably more of your energy and weight too. I have been fortunate so far and not had cancer but I did suffer a life-changing illness in my 30's and I think I am still adapting to some of the changes that brought about. I don't think we are ever fully prepared for the changes that serious illness wroughts in us and equally I don't think we are ever prepared for the changes time (and trauma)brings about when we look in the mirror. Like Penny I don't know this wrinkly grey haired woman in my bathroom mirror or in photos but I celebrate having survived and still being here too. Here's to your 2 year anniversary and I know you will be happier in your skin by then. hugs xx

Karen Christensen said...

You have come out the other side of a very tough year. Seems that far too many of my blogger and Facebook friends have traveled that path. Here is hoping that your energy levels climb and your strong and healthy from now on!! ALways good to see your blog.

Maria Avila said...

Gail, I have been thinking of you, and I ask God how could I have some news from you and so you write us. DON´T GIVE UP. keep working on your art , even a little each day. About the white hair, don´t worry, you are a beautiful woman the way you are. Much health, love and joy from Brazil. Maria

Nellie's Needles said...

You are an amazing woman to have survived the traumas life has thrown at you. In spite of all that you see and record the beauty around you and express your feelings creatively in words and paint.

This journey we're traveling through life is not for sissies. It took me a while to realize there's no "going back" to what was before cancer was diagnosed ... only forward ... and that takes fortitude and courage. Well, a bit of stamina is needed too. Hopefully, that will increase with healing and time.

If my name is drawn, I would take any one of those 3 portraits of your recent journey.

Raewyn said...

Gail, it has been quite a year we have walked through together. Let us look forward with hope that the years will only improve.
You know, with all our communication I never thought of you as any different to when we met, never thought of you losing your hair, or the changes you describe.
I love the perspective of your photo and if I could see you clearly I would still love you, no matter the colour of your hair, or the aging state you and we all find ourselves in.
Take care and know you are loved.

PS - love No 1 of your paintings ;-)

marieJ' said...

So nice to see you posting again..I always enjoy looking at what's new in your garden.Your photography is superb..white flower under the moonlight,love it!
While the Spring is waking up gardens at your end, here everything is preparing for cold and windy days. We could do with more rain tho'.
I'm planting more trees again...lost few this past summer during the very hot spells..
Art wise..most of the art stuff is packed away due to extension being build onto existing studio..
But, I have my sewing machine on the dining room table with latest mini projects waiting to be finished..

Bernice said...

Gail when I first saw your photo then read your story I have to admit that I read it with much hope that your story would end good.
I also understand the weight loss and wrinkles. I went from 195 lbs down to 115 at my lowest..My skin just hands of my skeleton body and my face has aged 20 years.I hate to go outside and have people see me. I used to weigh 115 but I looked fantastic then. My COPD, ovarian cancer, thyroid cancer. The COPD can not be cured.
My energy level was as low as it could go,weak as a kitten. Slowly things are getting better and my energy level is here one day gone the next.
Your picture said it all to me, this woman knows how I feel. I wish you the best and may you have many happy, joyful days the rest of your life..Hugs((())))