June 14 – Wonderful things are happening here and I hardly know where to start! I warn you now; you may just have to throw up from all of my gushing good news!
First off – I went to the oncologist and…………………………..I am fine! Still in remission. He was so very happy and said I had come such a long way. Interestingly, I don’t have that feeling. I guess it was because it was all very gradual I didn’t notice like he does only seeing me every four months. Every single one of my blood counts are right in the normal range. I have even lost some weight and he noticed and commented on how good I looked. I thanked him but have to remember he is like my radiation oncologist and as long as you are alive and healthy they think you are beautiful!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! But hey, I will take a compliment any way I can get it!
Now for the really braggy stuff. I like to let you know right up front that I am perfectly aware I am bragging so when Bragging Birgit gets going you have been forewarned and can skip over all of it if you wish!
Well, it all happened last week. On Monday, SJ called and said we needed to go out to the coffee house and he had to remind me what that was all about. Awhile ago he hired a new receptionist and her cousin was opening another franchise of the Daily Grind coffee house and they wanted local artists to display their work in the new store. They have one by our university but it is geared to college age people and the new one is in an upscale area so needs a whole different type of art. He had mentioned it and I agreed we should do it and that was the end of it as life got really busy with my trip to Tampa. Well, they were opening on Wednesday and had no art work at all so……………………….off we went on Tuesday morning loaded up with our best stuff expecting her to choose a few of the pieces she liked the best and assuring each other that if she only chose the work of one of us (we have his, mine and ours!) the other one would not be offended or jealous, just happy for the one whose art work was chosen. Well……we brought all of it in and placed it all over the coffee house so she could choose and she just kept walking around saying, “Oh, I love that one and oh, I love that one, too and oh, I love that one…………” and………………………….she asked if they could hang all of them! Not only that, she was so impressed with how our two styles looked together and the fact that some of the art work was a collaboration of the two of us that she offered us the whole gallery space for ourselves for as long as we wanted to hang there! We will have an “Opening” a week or so after their Grand Opening and invite the whole world to come out and see us and our work! She wants to know if we have any more pieces as there are still walls that need art. We say, “Of course!” and head out the door. We get into the car and up until now we have been very much the “professional artists” but once we closed the car doors we started yelling, “YES! YES!” and laughing like hyenas! Then we decided we would call down to the CityArts Factory Gallery and see if we could pick up our current stuff early so we could take it back out the coffee house. We get back to his house, call the gallery and I can see his face and hear him say, “Really! Both of us?!” and I am thinking, “Oh Lordy, please don’t need more new art work for anything right now!” He gets off the phone and…………………………..this is the 8th year of the Downtown Arts District and the show for June is highlighting a few of the local artists that board members wanted to sponsor (you could only be in this one if a DAD board member sponsored you in and paid your fees!) and they needed three pieces each from both of us for next week. OH MY GOSH! Artist Annie was close to fainting at this point. So, off we go downtown to the CAF Gallery to get our stuff so we can then take it way back the other way to the new gallery. Good news when we got down there, we could put in work that we really liked and it did not have to be new. So I have now stripped my house of any artwork that could possibly hang somewhere. I came home and began work on a book for the coffee table in the coffee house that showcases the “Featured Artists at the Daily Grind” so we can be contacted for sales. We went out yesterday to add all the tags so people could match up the artwork with the information about it. Then I find out that the corporate offices of the Daily Grind support breast cancer! They have a beautiful travel mug that a donation is made to Susan G. Komen every time one is sold and they are coming up with some type of promotion for free coffee for breast cancer survivors for life. And then……………..(Are you sick yet????) we decided to have a special Show in October where we will highlight my “Life, Love and Hope” canvas and sell the greeting cards I make with the design and maybe some other items of mine and of SJ’s and the store and all the profits will go to Susan G Komen. Oh my, oh my! They are going to have open mike night’s where people come and read poetry or play music and in case you can’t tell we are VERY EXCITED to be a part of all of this. So, off we go next week to take stuff down to the CAF Gallery and then on out to the coffee house to deliver more art work there! Very heady stuff! Mind you, I have a ton of deadlines and he has a medical practice to run so we have to fit all this into our actual work!
September 4 – Good Heavens! Where has the time gone? I have never gone this long without writing something in these BC Journals. I can only say that things are so “right” and that I am incredibly happy with life and so many good things are still happening that I hardly have time to think about that old nasty cancer! Next month is my four month oncology check-up so we will see if I get my attack of the Heebie-Jeebies when it is time to go.
Well, I have been to conventions in Tampa Florida, Houston Texas and Columbus Ohio since I last wrote. SJ and I have had a very successful Artist Reception at the Daily Grind, just took new artwork out there the day before yesterday, I leave tomorrow to teach in New York, I get home on Monday and on Saturday all my students arrive here for a week of my Fall Art Experience. They will stay with me for the whole week and besides learning all the art stuff, we will be going to a museum, then to a small Artist Reception at the Daily Grind so they can see lots of our art work and then to the Third Thursday Art Happening in Downtown Orlando where we show our work (of course, since I am taking a whole group of people down there do you think I have anything hanging right now? Nope! Next month I will but….they will be here this month so it will be fun to take them to see where we usually are) After they leave two weeks later I have more seminars to teach so will be off again!
Are you sick yet????????????????? Nauseated by all my gushing????????????? There really is a point to all of it. I am feeling fine, am still in remission as far as I know, the “twins” Perky Polly and Droopy Dolly, have gotten used to wearing a bra again although I still get complaints from them once in awhile about “how things used to be when they were free” so I tell them if they don’t stop complaining I will tighten the straps and see how they like that! I really don’t have any real complaints (except for that Evil Leg and Foot Cramp Lucinda Faye who once in awhile still tries to “get me.”) and it is a bit boring to keep writing – I am fine! I’m sure it is better than some new dreadful thing happening, but it is boring!
The whole cancer experience has left me with a new zeal for my life. I don’t wait anymore for anything. I know just how fast your life can change from one day to the next and I will not get caught again wishing I had “done some thing” when I had the chance but put it off for the future. I will always be uncertain of my future, the nasty stuff was very aggressive both times and I did have it twice sooooooooooooooooo…………… However, life for anyone is uncertain, isn’t it? Why not learn from my experience (without having all the fun treatments and side effects) and start living your life for TODAY! Look at the beautiful trees and flowers and butterflies and cats (I love cats!) and marvel at what you see. Really look at stuff and you will be amazed at the details you see and tool for granted. People! Good books! The air! The sun on your face! The wind – I adore the wind on my face – makes me stop what I am doing just to savor the feeling. Life is what I am celebrating. My life. The fact that I am still here to live it. And all the life around me. It is heady stuff.
No photo this time. Just a celebration of life.
I won’t write again until after my October oncology appointment so keep your fingers crossed that it will all still be good.
Get your mammograms, do your monthly breast self-check (I still do them on a regular basis, that is how I found the last cancer) and guys get your prostate checked!
Until next time,
Margot a.k.a The keeper of the Twins and Artist Annie – where have all my personas gone?
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