Archive for Reflections

Marta Mellinger: 1952-2013

All things come to an end. Sometimes life overtakes us and this truth has taken on greater meaning for me over the past year.

It is with great sadness that I write this final post for Marta Mellinger. Marta passed away on September 13, 2013, overtaken by a particularly rare and aggressive form of ovarian cancer.

You can read her published obituary at The Oregonian.

In so many ways, BlazerLady was an expression of Marta’s passionate engagement with the question: what does life mean? It was a question that fired her curiosity and inspired all of us.

It is all such a great loss and only now, as I approch the end of the year, does it seem time to do this final post.

I would like to thank all of our friends for their support over the years. Do what Marta told you to do, with all your passion and heart.

What question would Marta ask you right now?

The limits of knowledge

Abstract view from Kohler Plaza, 10th Floor OHSUThis is a guest column by my husband, David Frackelton. I’m continuing to do the battle of the bulge, specifically my bloated belly. If you do anything for yourself today, be thankful for a functioning bowel. – Marta

“This has been the most difficult week of my life,” Marta said to me last night. I don’t agree, but then I’ve only been a witness to her suffering.

Let’s get the important disclaimers out of the way. We are receiving good to excellent care here at OHSU. Good when we have caring people who do their jobs with diligence and intelligence. Excellent when we have fearless partners in our continuing battle toward health. This hospital is, after all, a complex organization. As we float from day shift to swing to nights, we experience a new set of care givers who, among their many duties, engage with Marta’s rare cancer and the resulting conditions. Nausea. Pain. Constipation. Lack of nutrition.

And so we reached the milestone of a week in the hospital last night.
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My Claiming – Being a Forest Dweller

Tall_Tree_Forest_Dweller_111312On my birthday, I had a “croning”. I “sat up” with a circle of women I loved and said out loud what I want to claim:

I am an artist. I claim my creativity, and that I have stories to tell. There will be many more to come.  Imagination is like that. While my creativity is mine, it comes from God.  I get to choose which, where and when to do what with my ideas. So here’s what I say at 60:

I will make beauty with meaning and love.

I will still put my energies to work for others, but there I will increase the time I spend reflecting and imagining, carving and building and making.  My friend Shann tells me this is “being a forest dweller.”  She’ll was with me tonight and I asked her to write a couple paragraphs about that for you:

After this thread is woven for blazer lady, I will – probably over the Thanksgiving holidays – launch my new blog site, Backyard Meadow.  Blazer Lady will stay here, waiting, for some differently personal posting should the need arise in our future.


Turning 60

Marta_at_60_111112Yesterday was my 60th birthday.  I had a “croning”.  I knew it was time, what with the cancer this year and all.  I transitioned from being “in my 50s” to being “a forest dweller”.  I will write several posts this week about this:  If you want – tune in.

Given the adventures of the past year, I am singularly grateful to be turning 60, getting crow’s feet and shifting the weight into the center of my body. But there’s this one other thing I began thinking about during October:

60 is old.

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