The Year of Living, Dangerously – Imaginary Conversations #5 ~2009


Journal Cover – I cut up a drawing and put it back together again, glued it to a page in a sketch book – after the journal was finished, I knew this was to be the cover.  The year 2009 began like most any year – lots of resolutions – lots of ideas, hopes, and, of course, the unknowns.   I guess the first thing that happened was my immediate boss at work gave notice.  We worked so happily together and balanced each other very well, I knew it would be a difficult transition working for someone new.  She suggested I apply for her position, but we both knew I wouldn’t survive working for her boss, which was the reason she was moving on.  Corporate hired someone new, and in March I lost my job.  Not a good time to be job hunting, to say the least. 

A sketch of my new boss, that became a mini-painting and started a series of other little paintings I called Circ.

 “Margaux and Her Climb to the Top” acrylic on Canvas 4×6 inch

My senior photo from high school, I am 16 years old.  Thought I knew so much more.  It just seemed appropriate to put this old photo in this journal – a journal of moving backward and being dragged forward full speed.

A sketch for a painting that I am still working on.  Its a very large painting ( for me) and it’t taking a lot of time to create.

Now that I’m not working there seems to be a lot of time for thinking about the past.  Also a lot of time to work on letting go of the past, easier said than done!

Jobless, and now bad news from my doctor.  This year just isn’t getting any better.  I wish I could fly away.  I wish I were a million hours away from this moment, not  in this time, not here – be somewhere else, anywhere else, be anyone but who I have to be now.

I am standing in fire.

An old blurry photo of me at age 30.  Aren’t we supposed to know most everything by then – we are adults – but I still knew very little.  I look at my face and I see how trusting and naive I was, even at 30.  But I like  this photo, I like the person I was, inspite of being naive.


A copy of a drawing I did – somehow I have lost the original – but I had a copy of it in the computer, such a sad determined face.  I feel myself growing angry, then sad, then angry, determined, afraid, staunch.  I cannot be defined by this thing that has invaded.  I am determined to fight this on my own – I kept it secret for months.



Thirty-three stones – one a day, five days a week, for six weeks.  I gathered a stone each day after the radiation treatment and I keep them in a jar where I can see them often – a reminder that I am determined!  December 1, 2010, saw my one year anniversary from radiation.  The disease did not define me, the experiences I grew from defines me.


6 responses »

  1. wonderful little book. I didn’t know where you were going with it. Even without your illness (if your story had taken a different direction) it would have been wonderful to follow.

  2. David, I really appreciate your comment – I didn’t know exactly where I was going with it myself – I just followed my thought process, which sometimes isn’t linear!

  3. Love to you Olivia! I don’t know where you are at in life now– but I have loved reading about your adventures in life and in art! Such inspiration for a beginning artist! Hugs & Blessings, Rose

  4. I am hanging in there. The last two years have been a bit of a bumpy road. But I’m getting back to my art and hope I can create as many ideas as I have circulating in my artist’s brain! Thank you for your love and interest in me!

  5. I do have a love and have an interest in you! Your art & blog captivated me (not in a creepy way, but in an inspiring and creative spirit!)– I am glad you are doing better/hanging in there– I do not know all of your struggles, but I was an oncology nurse for over half of my nursing career and from what I picked up– well, my heart goes out to you and the strength of your spirit! ❤ I am happily waiting to see what things are in that artist brain of yours in the future, and if it is half what the past has been, it will be very exciting indeed! ~Rose

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