Notebook Drawings

I have said before that I didn’t really start drawing until Mark got sick, in 2011. As the years progressed, I found my drawings getting more and more detailed and complex. I had discovered that adding minute details helped me keep my mind off scary things, like emergency rooms or waiting for operations or procedures to be over. The more details, the better. These were done on lined paper, primarily in pencil.


We’ll start with Emergency Room Bears. Bears always make you feel better, especially whimsical bears floating away with balloons!

I basically filled up three composition books where I took notes at doctor visits, made lists of things to do, and kept track of symptoms and medications. I revisited them this afternoon while looking for something else (which I didn’t find, by the way), and remembered that I had intended on doing a post about them. (You’ll notice they may not all be in chronological order, but most  have dates on them.)


Emergency Room Butterflies, Turtle, and Fish were done with felt pens. This was the emergency room visit where they discovered internal bleeding due to the pancreatic tumor. This resulted in an endoscopy and an angiogram of the abdominal veins. Below is the drawing from when I was waiting for the angiogram to be done – that was the “Interventional Radiology”.



It’s so much easier to draw cats looking out a window, because then you don’t have to worry about drawing their faces! (See Interventional Radiology Cat, or this post,  and you will know why I say this.)

july-1-5Between July 1 and July 5 of 2015 we had two more emergency visits which resulted in another week-long hospitalization. Nurses, and even some of the doctors, would frequently stop and remark about my notebook drawings, which seemed to amaze them. Everyone agreed that drawing was good therapy for stress. bears-at-radiation


“Hospital Elephant” both in pencil and felt tip marker.


By the end of July we were back, with the tumor having created more complications that required surgery at a second hospital.large-vase



In closing this post, I’d like to mention that it’s amazing how much color, design, and whimsy is in a person’s brain, just ready to come out. All you need is the time, a significant amount of stress, and some pens or pencils!