Oncology on Canvas

In May 2008 I entered an art contest sponsored by Lilly called “Oncology on Canvas” — you could enter a photo, fine art or mixed art canvas with a brief story.  Here is my entry:

“The Look”

This is my five-year old daughter and this is her “look.”  I didn’t even mean to capture it on camera, it happened on accident.  As I was snapping pictures of her in her softball uniform to give away to our friends and family, she turned and shot me “the look,” and luckily I clicked the shutter.  Her “look” says volumes about her personality:  smart, witty, perceptive.  She only gives this look when someone has said or done something she thinks is foolish.  As her mom I see “the look” a lot.

This is what cancer looks like to me.

It’s the most unimaginable thing to happen to a parent, and it doesn’t matter if your child is fire or forty-five.  It changes your family, your life and turns your world upside down.  Countless times in my life I’ve gotten a card or an email with an inspirational reminder that life is too short to be taken for granted.  And like most people the words stuck with me for a few hours or maybe a few days but are soon forgotten at the next bump in the road.  it may be cliché to say, but I no longer need an email or a card as a reminder that we can’t change the past and we can’t predict the future so we have to take life one day at a time.  The “look” is my reminder – because she is still here to give it.

Teagan got to travel all over the world and give her “look” to people from all nations — she actually traveled for almost 2 years with the Oncology on Canvas tour.

Next:  After a visit to the beach it’s hard to believe we live in a material world.  ~Pam Shaw

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