My name is Suzy Martin, and I am an Educational Therapist and artist in California. I am 45 years old, married, with one dog, and, through my art, I try to convey my life story:
At the age of 23, I had a near-death experience resulting in the removal of 80% of my small bowel. I have a rare blood cancer, Polycythemia Rubra-Vera (which was not known until years after this surgery). My dreams of performing as an actress/comedienne were beginning at that time with offers of agents, auditions, and roles. In a day, my life halted. My body was dying from the inside out, and it took emergency surgery to fix the problem. Somehow, I survived, but with a cost: I had to teach my body how to eat again before I even thought about anything else. I fell into a depression but was reawakened by teaching. After 12 years teaching in the public and private school sectors, I started my own Educational Therapy practice in 2013 where I focused on one-on-one education with students aged 3 to adult, all spectrums of learning. Two years later, just as I had successfully established my business and began expanding my practice, I was “punched in the gut” again. My engorged spleen lacerated and was removed, weighing 16 pounds (yes, 16 pounds!); I nearly died again. It took a couple of years to deal with pain, but with the help of my husband, Kyle, and my family, I managed to recuperate.
The Covid-Era brought a slew of new issues, since my immune system is severely compromised. As with any adversity, though, there is an opportunity to nurture patience and hope. As my dad says (repeatedly), “Any day above ground is a good day.”
I have always found peace in carving, painting, and creating. These works are meant to reflect natural beauty despite flaws. Nothing is perfect in life, but it is always, always, always interesting.