Living Obliquely

Approximately 1400 people are diagnosed with Transverse Myelitis (TM) annually.
Similar to Multiple Sclerosis, it attacks your myelin, leading to painful and debilitating side effects.
About 33,000 Americans are currently disabled as a result of this rare neurological disorder.
Not one person with TM will ever know their prognosis.
I happen to be one of them.

I am a neurological soup. Since my TM diagnosis, I have developed encephalitis, MS, RSD/CRPS, Osteoporosis (I am 34, no 35, eek), and Chronic Anemia. sucks, but I still rock.


EVENT! Representing TM, MS, and Other Disabling Chronic Illnesses Through Art

Dear Friends Near & Far,

You're invited to my "studio", which is included among 100's of artists as part of this year's POST, a city-wide open-studio art event. (How cool is that?)

It's my first year in POST, and my first year as a painter. I never imagined that when I lost my dance and my creative writing (for the most part) to Transverse Myelitis (TM) & Multiple Sclerosis (MS), I'd find it on paper and canvas?!

I'm grateful to have a new creative outlet, to be able to share it with others, and most importantly spreading the word about life as a badass gimp with a rare, debilitating, chronic illness. Unfortunately, nowhere in pop culture, are our lives accurately presented. That's not why I started this blog or why I started painting, but it's an added benefit that came as a nice surprise. And when you're sick like me, NICE surprises are few and far between.

I hope you'll stop by 10/10 or 10/11 from 12-6 for a visit, a giggle, a cup of tea or glass of wine, to say hi to my fab mom from Pittsburgh, or (dare I say it) to buy some art - 100+ original paintings & drawings starting at $10, as well as hand-made chapbooks of my poetry & art.

For this weekend only, prices will be less than on the Neuro Art Web site.

Feel free to spread the word. There's more info below.


To check out a sampling of my smaller work, visit Neuro Detour: On Paper. And, if you can't make it this weekend and want to see my work in person, feel free to email me to schedule an appointment, or you can purchase work directly from the Web site.


Mel's in POST (click to see my personal page on the POST Web site)
What: Philadelphia Open Studio Tours
(West of Broad Street)
Where: The Drake, 1512 Spruce Street #1802, Philadelphia, PA 19102: View Map
When: Saturday & Sunday, October 10 & 11, 12-6PM or by appointment


This October, The Center for Emerging Visual Artists™ is pleased to bring you the 10th Annual Philadelphia Open Studio Tours. Join over 300 professional visual artists, local businesses, arts organizations and galleries to celebrate 10 years of studio art! Artists and event partners in every neighborhood from Chestnut Hill to South Philly will open their doors free to public in the largest event of its kind in Philadelphia.

This year, the Open Studio Tours is happy to feature the following artists in the Center City West neighborhood:

Madeline Adams
Betsy Alexander
DoN Brewer
Kevin Broad
Mark Bullen
Estelle Carraz-Bernabei
Elizabeth Core
Deborah Deery
Jerry-Gerard Di Falco
Eric Frantz
Katherine Fraser
Carolyn George / CRG Studios George / CRG Studios
Thomas Kohlmann
Ted Mosher
Maria Nevelson
Nicole Pellegrini
Paul Rider
Carlo Russo
Jane Steinsnyder
Lauren Sweeney
Aleksandra Vasic-Lalovic
Angela Victor
Ernest Villareal
Burnell Yow!

You can check out all of these artists work and locations in advance on the POST site.

Artwork Images by Me

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If you're a Philly-region person with TM, please consider joining the Transverse Myelitis Philadelphia network (, a new social networking group that I started for people with TM so that we can meet and chat casually. It's only on Facebook for now, so, if you haven't already, join. It's easy.


In Pictures

Please Note: Some photos may contain partial nudity or depictions of medical procedures. Though I am in many of these photos, my reason for sharing these personal photos is to promote awareness, understanding, and advocacy for people with TM and other rare diseases.
To play the slide show, click the big play button in the center of the screen, then the small one in the bottom left corner. Click here for more advanced viewing instructions, and select "Help."

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