The Torn Edges of Life Are Beautiful
Mixing the bits and pieces of art and life
I really haven't blogged much since May. It wasn't a result of nothing to say but rather the opposite - there was way too much to talk about and some of it I just couldn't talk about. May was a big month, lots going on and lots of change.
One of the changing aspects of the month of May was a big personal change. I went back to work in an office which may sound odd coming from me but it turned out to be exactly what I needed. This past year I have had this nagging feeling that I needed more. I found I made my best art when I had good focus and a deadline. Having too much time was allowing my mind to wander and over think things way too much. I needed something to fuel the creativity and tie it all together at the same time allowing my bigger plan to be realized. So, I approached a dear friend of mine, Sharon Perry who I knew was looking for an office assistant for her accounting firm. We both decided to give it a try and I am really glad she took me on even though I hadn't worked in an office for 15 years!!! This office job turned out to be my saving grace. Art wise, I have created some of my favourite pieces since working for Sharon and I find I am way more focused and organized. Personally, this office space became my safe place to cry, unload and simply be surrounded by good people during a time where I felt unbalanced and scared. I am so grateful to Sharon and Lana who have made me smile and laugh on days I didn't really want to.
You see, since May it became hard to blog because my husband and I had a secret we had been keeping from our kids, my mother in law all summer and many of our friends. I tried a few times to just write about casual things but life just really didn't feel even the slightest bit casual. It was bordering on overwhelming. I write my feelings, create my feelings, exercise my feelings and sometimes I even eat my feelings. I always have. It's how I am wired so not being able to write truthfully actually stopped my blogging. It also stopped me making eye contact with a lot of people; especially those who knew my kids. That dreaded "How are you?" or "How's your summer going?" could never be answered honestly and sometimes caused my eyes to fill with tears and so I avoided the question all together by avoiding making a connection and keeping busy. We were keeping a secret because secretly we were hoping we would never have to tell the real truth which was my husband had cancer.
My husband was diagnosed with Stage 2 Hodgkins Lymphoma in the middle of August. My husband and I said the word "fuck" a lot over the course of the summer but I do believe it was August 19th when he yelled it so loud into the air as we left that dreaded appointment I was shocked. I felt numb and overcome with so many emotions I simply didn't know what to feel.
The nice thing about time is it gives you prospective. Now that we know his odds of beating this are fantastic we are ready to just kick some ass and move past it. So many others around us are way worse off. Yes, my husband has cancer and is enduring chemotherapy and it totally sucks but his prognosis is great and so many others don't have that to look forward to. They hang on to a glimmer of hope that maybe, just maybe they will find a better treatment for their disease. We have a treatment plan with a 90% positive prognosis and I just feel so lucky. Our kids (and my mother in law) got to hear that there is a good outcome and yeah there will be some shitty days but we have a bright light at the end of the tunnel where some just have this endless tunnel of black.
Over the course of the summer I held my husband's hands so hard, wiped the tears from his eyes and hugged him so he could feel every ounce of love I had because the NOT knowing what was wrong was so very very hard. The NOT knowing played mental tricks and was scary and I have a new appreciation for those who have no light at the end of their tunnel...yet.
Our mind is powerful; it can heal us and it can also destroy us. One learns very quickly how staying focused on the present is essential. My hope for all who can't yet see the light is that they are able to find joy in the smallest things and hold onto hope that soon their light will shine brightly and their prayers will be answered as mine were. Abundantly grateful, I am.
Document gratitude with this beautiful Gratitude Journal. As with all my Gratitude Journals there is a prompt and then you can simple jot down what you feel grateful for.
For example, for today, I am abundantly grateful for:
It was certainly an interesting summer in my world and I feel as though it just blew by. Seems weird that it's almost Fall and yet, here it is.
In the creative retail world, buyers and art license agents always start prepping for Christmas in the summer. It feels weird to create new Christmas designs in July but that's when it's all done.
So...imagine my delight when Tree Free Greetings Canada contacted me asking for Christmas designs for their upcoming Christmas collection. Even more fun was they chose my Holiday Greetings from All design to be part of their Christmas collection this year. I love this design, if I may say so! It's so cheery and bright and really, who doesn't love a family of snowmen!
Since this design has now been licensed exclusively by Tree Free Greetings Canada it will be disappearing from my shop for a few years. That said, it will be available in over 1,000 stores across Canada as part of Tree Free Greetings Canada's Christmas collection. I think I am still smiling since signing that License Agreement.
*NOTE: If you wish to use one of my © images for your publication, permission must be given before using the image(s) for any purpose. Please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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