On 01.02.02, I was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer. Too late for surgery, I had chemotherapy, which failed. In May the chemotherapy was changed and I was soon in remission which was celebrated and welcome and lasted nine years - until October 2011. There was progression in 2011 so more treatment was indicated and I am now back in partial remission. But I'm not only a cancer patient - I also enjoy my family, walk my dogs and am learning to draw and paint. Life is good!

Friday, July 31, 2009

The occasional success

There are occasional successes at Juvenile Hall. Today, for example, an incarcerated boy graduated from high school with an official county diploma.

The staff did everything they could to make it a genuine ceremony even though the kid was in jail and the only graduate. 

They dressed him in a black cap and gown. They invited his family. They took innumerable snapshots and promised him copies. (And the staff member with the camera made sure the photos were taken away from the stern Warning sign posted on the wall.)

 "Pomp and Circumstance" was played on someone's iPod as the boy walked into the room. Everyone applauded. There were three speeches and two presentations - his diploma and a small check. The kitchen staff had baked and decorated a cake which was served with ice cream.

Later I approached the graduate and congratulated him on his achievement. 

"I hope it was okay that I brought my dog to your graduation," I said.

"Of course," he responded, "it made it all the better." And then he introduced Demi to his parents and siblings. 

I counted. There were twenty people present. I guess Demi made twenty-one.


  1. What a special day for this young man !! AND, your snapdragons are beautiful.

  2. Anonymous8:23 AM

    What a heart warming story. And i love that sketch - nice and loose and lovely colour.

  3. Anonymous10:04 PM

    This is lovely...

  4. Great experience, Barbara! That's one of your exceptional flower paintings, too. I can see why you picked it for this post.


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