In Saturday’s Forum John Lamb wrote about Claudia Pratt who is using art to cope with, explore options and bring attention to living with stage 4 cancer. Claudia has started an exhibit at the Green Market Kitchen located at 69 4th St. N. in Fargo. The exhibit is one that will be developing and changing as it goes and has an interactive feature. Claudia has titled this project – or perhaps better termed – this journey – “Exploring Now: 365 Days to 50.”
The exhibit will initially run from 3 to 9 PM Tuesdays through Fridays and from noon to 9 PM on Saturdays through April 30th.
Claudia has experienced cancer before – first as a young woman and again in 2006. This time the cancer has spread from her breasts to her lungs and is incurable. Claudia has decided that she will use art as the medium by which she shares with others her journey to her 50th birthday.
While Claudia’s show officially begins on February 28th (her 49th birthday) with an opening reception at the Green Market she has already begun framing her artistic vision and soliciting interaction with folks who visit the Green Market. Tables are equipped with sticky notes and pens so that patrons can leave “moment” messages for Claudia that suggest things she should do in her 50th year and share how they live their own lives “in the now.”
I have a “moment” message for Claudia that I wanted to share on my blog today because this is how I live in the now – I relish in the true inspirations that I see in the world…the examples of regular people being extraordinary role models. Alas, what I have to say is a bit too big for a sticky note – so I share my message here.
You are fierce! You have chosen to self-define your tomorrows as opposed to allowing cancer to define them for you. I applaud you – your courage, your strength and your ownership over your own life experience. I hope that through your example others will recognize that they too have the power to define their own lives no matter what challenges they face. We have the power to frame our response to those things that we encounter and your response to your cancer is a powerful illustration of that.
Live all the moments in your life knowing that in your example there is a light that illuminates the path for others, a tale that demands the attention of those living mechanically and a message that transcends anything cancer can do to your body…live your life knowing that you are fierce and a life force to be reckoned with.
A thousand bravos to you Claudia…I have already entered your 50th birthday party into my calendar – consider this my RSVP.
I hope you will have an opportunity to visit the Green Market over the next few months to meet Claudia and to see this fierce lady’s work. I’d also encourage you to mark Claudia’s 50th birthday celebration on your calendar - it will be held on Feb. 25, 2012 at the Hjemkomst Center in Moorhead.
Day five hundred and fifty-nine of the new forty – obla di obla da