Have you ever wondered how in the world you can help a friend or family member recently diagnosed with cancer? If so, you're not alone. I think we can all relate to feelings of helplessness, guilt and sadness when we're on the outside looking in on someones personal, private and overwhelming emotional pain due to a cancer diagnosis. We think to ourselves, "how can I help, or what can I say to make this time easier from my loved one"? Sometimes we find ourselves retreating and not saying anything at all because we don't want to cause more pain. But retreating is the worst thing we can do. There are many things we can do to help support our loved ones.
This week, as we celebrate the launch of Flowers for Daisy, the new stamp set illustrated by Asela Hopkins and supported and released by Gina K. Designs, I will share with you ways in which you can help a loved one suffering with cancer. I'm not offering any earth shattering ideas you probably haven't thought of yourself, but I'm just refreshing your memory in case you find yourself in this situation and unable to realize how you can help.
First off, let your friend/family member know you love them and are willing to be there to help in any way you can. We all have different gifts. Some of us are good cooks and can provide meals for the family. Others of us love to drive and wouldn't mind driving our loved one to and from chemo treatments. Still others of us have creative abilities (ahem....that'd be YOU!!) and are able to create a set of thank you cards for our loved one so they can thank friends and family members for their support throughout treatment (this is how I've helped my SIL...my hubby just left to visit Jayne and Ken and I sent along a set of handmade thank you cards for Jayne to use to send to people that have helped them out). Just remember, if you make a commitment to help, it's important to follow through. If you promised to bring a meal over on Sunday, don't forget!
And one last thought for today....allow your friend/loved one to feel sad. Don't be afraid to talk with them about uncomfortable topics or feelings. On the other hand, talk about things besides the cancer too. Sometimes people suffering from cancer need to talk about something other than cancer for a change! Remember, not everything changed with the diagnosis. They are the same person during the cancer as they were before the cancer. They didn't suddenly turn into an alien once they got diagnosed! Chances are if they liked to talk about politics before they got cancer, they'll probably still want to talk politics after they got cancer (or stamping:))!
OK, it's time to talk to you about my card using the new Flowers For Daisy set......it was the first one I made, and it took me the longest because I wanted so badly to do this set justice for my friends Asela and Gina. If you look closely at the background I made with one of the daisy stamps in the set, it looks like it's oil painted! Now, I'd love to tell you I've invented a brand new technique to make your cards look like they are oil painted, but that wouldn't be true. I sort of stumbled across the technique after many failed attempts at coloring my daisies. In the end, here's how I managed to get my daisies to look like they do.
First off, I took the two-daisy stamp from the set, and stamped it all over a piece of kraft cardstock with Versamark. Then I embossed the daisies with off-white embossing powder. The next step involves filling in the petals on the flowers with my Galaxy Milky Way White Marker, which I've had in my stash for a million years and never used.
I've never used it because it's sort of translucent, not opaque. Once I colored in all the petals using this marker, I colored over the translucent glaze with a purple Copic marker. Because of the translucent glaze underneath, the purple Copic marker appears somewhat translucent as well. And because when I colored each petal I went out of the lines of the embossed image, it looks like each flower petal is created using oil paints. I know, strange, but in real life, that's really how it looks! I had so much showing you my first card with Flowers For Daisy! I hope you like it and realize you too can make a difference in someones life by purchasing this set for your own. It will be released tonight during the release party over at Gina K. Designs! Remember, for every set sold, Gina K. Designs will give $4.00 the American Cancer Society to help in the fight of this awful disease. I am honored to be involved, if only in a small way, in this crusade lovingly battled by Asela and Gina.
Have a great day!