Friday, October 2, 2009

An Inspiring LiveSTRONG Day

My Quilt Piece

I volunteered to help with the LiveSTRONG Day Survivorship Quilt project at the Cancer Institute of NJ ( CINJ). The project was developed by the Survivors Advisory Board, a part of the Center for Cancer Survivorship at CINJ. The project has been going on all week from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm in the lobby of the center. I helped both yesterday morning and this morning, LiveSTRONG Day 2009. We asked survivors or their family to take a fabric square and draw or write what cancer survivorship means to them. I am in awe of what so many survivors, from toddlers to adults, shared on their squares. There were hearts and stars, angels and awareness ribbons, motorcycles and cars, trees and mountains. There were words like courage , love, and hope . Survivors I met these past two days touched my heart and brought tears to my eyes.

J. a young boy took his square and some bright color Sharpies with him to treatment . About two hours later, looking very tired he handed me his clipboard- he had drawn balloons and smiley faces .

An older woman in a wheelchair came by and asked for the brightest colored square and Sharpies. She started to draw flowers on her square and told me she was a 25 year cancer survivor. When she handed us back her clipboard she had filled the square with flowers and thanked God for a wonderful life.

A teen wrote - and I will paraphase- If all my troubles would go away ... how could life teach me anything!

A toddler who was 2 years old and her mom came by after the toddler's treatment. Her mom sat down and she jumped up on her lap . She took some markers colored in a heart her mom had drawn for her and then made big blue and red circles. She was smiling the entire time.

When I left at noon today we had over 60 squares. I can't wait to see the finished quilt.

What does survivorship mean to you?

My square says it all!

1 comment:

l'optimiste said...

I can't wait to see it either!