During the six weeks in 2002 that we stayed at Domain Lodge (a motel for patients undergoing cancer treatment), while I underwent radiotherapy, I was extremely weak. I decided before I began the treatment that I wanted to spend some time each day doing something artistic. That I wanted to do one thing, even though incredibly small, every day. I can’t really explain just how weak I was during this period, and how extremely small this one thing was.
Nearly every evening I would go out on the little balcony outside my bedroom and sit and do a few strokes of colour onto black paper with my pastels. I had chosen black because to me it symbolized the darkness that I felt was hovering around behind me in that Lodge. Even though it was a beautiful building, I was so very aware of the fact, from my first visit there, that everyone there was struggling with cancer and was walking a hard road, so black in the background seemed fitting.
Colours still strongly represented themes to me and I titled the artworks with just one or two words. In the six weeks I was staying at Domain Lodge I only managed to do six pieces of art but they are very symbolic of what I felt I needed, and what I was experiencing during this time.
The first artwork was what I felt I greatly needed for that time. I only had the strength to put one foot in front of the other; making it across the road to each day’s treatment was all I could manage. Every day I hoped and prayed that going
through the radiotherapy treatment would, in time, pay off and that my tumor would either stop growing or recede. I knew I would have to wait before either of these things would be visible.
The next three pieces were themed around faith.
In spite of having no idea whether the radiotherapy was actually going to work, I did feel faith rising up within me. I believed that even though I couldn’t see or feel any change in my tumour, that it would be halted by this treatment. (The blue in the artwork represented faith and was reaching to the higher lightness that flowed over it)
The following piece pretty accurately summed up how my faith was also being challenged some days. I was too weak to fight these challenges to my faith but thankfully God carried me through it all.
“FAITH IN A SPIN”
More than anything I felt completely and utterly washed out during my time of radiotherapy and there were undoubtedly days that it felt like my faith was also washing out.
“FAITH WASHED OUT”
As I have already said, I was so very weak while I underwent the six weeks of treatment and more than anything I needed God’s strength to get me through.
Finally, the last picture that I did was what I could feel deep inside my being. In spite of no doubt looking utterly exhausted, having a throbbing head 24 hours a day due to the swelling the radiation caused in my brain, and my hair starting to fall out, joy was what I felt.