My mission this week was to make some earrings for a woman in the hospital with cancer. The customer asked me to somehow incorporate her favorite animal -elephants, color - sea green and birthstone - opal into the design. I spent Wednesday buying the parts and began working on them on Thursday. I started piecing the earrings together and about half way through I get word the woman I was creating them for passed away. I didn't know her, but the customer, who was a former co-worker, knew her well. The customer and I exchanged some emails. I was also asked to make her a soldered shadowbox charm with an elephant on a sea green background. She asked me to finish the work in her memory. That is what I did. You can see the elephant earrings below. I think they turned out very nice.
For awhile now, I have been thinking about what I can do to help those who have been stricken with cancer. It touches so many of us. In my very recent past, I spent a lot of time in the chemo wing at the Mayo Clinic with a loved one of mine. I have watched her go through experiences that I wouldn't wish on anyone. She is a fighter and an amazing woman. You would not know what she was going through unless she told you ... and most the time she doesn't. She lives without letting many people know what a fight she is going through, because so often when you tell people you have cancer they treat you as if you're dying. The way she looks at it is that she wants to be treated as if she is living for as long as she gets to be alive, which is something I can totally respect. While I was working on the earrings, I received an email from etsy about their team Etsy Project Embrace. I read, "Etsy Project Embrace (EPE) is a Universal Coalition of Artists whose main purpose is to create awareness and support for people who have been diagnosed with cancer." It was perfect timing. I have also been thinking about joining a second etsy team. So I wrote to the team admin and became a new member of Etsy Project Embrace. As many members of the team have done, I will be donating a portion of all my sales to the American Cancer Society. I still have a lot to learn about my new team and team members, but I am excited, as well as honored, to be part of such an amazing team.