About the photo: "Gone Forever" - These are the Eastern Hemlock trees in the Great Smoky Mountain National Park that have died from the Hemlock Wooly Adelgid. Like humans fighting cancer, our trees are fighting against various blights and insect infestations, We have lost and are losing some of our great tree species. While I love to take photos of dead (and dormant) trees, I am not oblivious to the battle they (and the dedicated people who are trying to save them) are waging against their own diseases.
There is no easy way to say this, so I'll just say it. I have stage 3 Ovarian cancer. The treatment plan of chemo (with radiation being added later) is in place. I have a great team headed by Dr. Backes at JamesCare Gynecologic Oncology. They are very confident they can get me into remission, but this cancer has a bad habit of coming back.
On the good side, the checkup confirmed I am healing up from the surgery quite well. I'm dealing with some manageable side effects of being on blood thinners that will hopefully clear up when I transition from shots to pills. It's also possible I will only have to stay on blood thinners for a short time frame.
I plan on returning to my full-time job on April 29th. The treatment schedule should work well with my job and I work for a great company that takes care of its employees. I'm looking forward to getting back to writing code and designing screens. Hopefully, I will still be able to attend the SQL Saturday in June though that is a chemo week.
As far as my photography, I've already made plans to attend the Raptor Photography at Ohio Bird Sanctuary on Saturday, May 27th. This is part of a bigger event held each spring called Mohican Wildlife Weekend. Google it if your interested in seeing what it's all about. Even though that is the first week of chemo, Dr. Backes encouraged me to keep those plans. My husband also encouraged me to go ahead and buy the 10 stop ND filter I was planning on buying with the Resource Grant money (thanks again Greater Columbus Arts Council). In the weeks in-between chemo I may be able to get out and shoot. So for now, I plan on shooting when and what I can and live vicariously through all my great photography friends social media posts when I can't. I also have my table-top photography project and I will have a number of shows this year as well (stay tuned to my Facebook posts).
So attention everybody! Look a the camera, smile, and say, "Beat Cancer!"
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