Almost a year after discovering I have breast cancer, I am so very pleased to announce I was welcomed with open arms by what I consider to be the most dynamic gallery representing Canadian artists anywhere in the nation. Today, I joined some brilliant artists and incredible staff at Canada House Gallery.
I've been thinking about my individual natural capital - my time on this planet, how I use it and what I do with it. The answer for me is in truly living each moment without fear of the past or present, with my loved ones by my side.
Here are a few suggestions to the province and Alberta Health Services to avoid this in the future: Put adequate back-up plans in place to ensure no cancer patient's treatment is delayed. Zero tolerance. Empower hospital administration to adequately address emergency circumstances with patients in a timely and organized manner. "I can't tell you the secret that I know." does not help or instill confidence in the system. Deliver leadership and crisis training to address these concerns. Improve communications regarding health care in emergency situations. If chemical transport isn't possible due to hazardous material restrictions, a plan for how patients can get added to treatment rosters in Calgary or the nearest delivery site to their location.
One year ago today, I left Canmore for Haida Gwaii and a life-changing artist's residency at Gwaii Haanas National Park. In a month's time, I learned more than I could absorb, met new family and friends, saw, touched, smelled and heard things that were literally Super-Natural and was inspired and welcomed with open arms by the Haida Nation and the islanders.
Earlier this year, I was invited along with 36 artists in Alberta and Saskatchewan to participate in the inaugural "Cenovus Art Competition". The focus of the competition was to identify "under-recognized artists" in Alberta and Saskatchewan, in the form of a competition. Normally, I don't go in for these sort of things, but I liked what the company was proposing to do.
There is so much incredible content available to artists on the internet that it's hard to filter through all the "beauties" that fall in our lap. Here are three different, but beautiful, and hilarious videos that I've come across in the past two days.
Getting your hands on a different medium than what you are used to is GREAT for the soul. I had no expectations, and I admit the first thought I had was, "I'll make a little pot with the coil method." DUH...heck no. I let that go and just started playing around with the clay, watching how excited Grace was and how SURE she was about making a flower, a lily pad and a frog.
Today, I just wanted one normal day...to cook my family some dinner and actually be able to stay up and watch them eat it...and paint. In the end, three organic pears beat chemo all to hell.
When the reality of life is too much, as human beings we have our imagination, our made-up, make-believe worlds to help us navigate the unimaginable. For artists and creatives, I can only think that we are somehow super-charged with imaginations - for the best, and for the worst. Here's how I'm navigating these days.