I am a nurse. I have a BS in psychology Addiction & Recovery and a BS in Crisis Counseling, LPN, QMHP-A, CSAC. I Work in behavioral health in OBOT & Case Management, with mental health & Substance Use disorder clients. I am a strong advocate for awareness for both! None of that prepared me for what lies ahead in my journey...
Art is my escape....
Live it, Sketch it, Paint it!
Journaling allows me to empty my mind....📖
Photography allows me to create! 📸
Welcome to the randomness that lives within!
If you really know how I see the world, or that you’re my favorite person to talk to about life, art, everything inbetween.
I am censoring myself and I hate that. This was once a place I could unload all my thoughts carefree. I hold so much back these days. Fear of who will read it, how they will interpret it. When I know it really should not matter.
I censor myself around you. Fear of pushing you away.
I had an amazing experience showing art at the Madison House of the Arts Love is the New Vibe Show.
It was a great honor to be among many talented artists and musicians. We are so rich in art culture in Lynchburg and to come together and celebrate each other is just the best feeling.
Many things have been in the works, I will be updating soon. I excited about new opportunities and new doors opening. Life has a journey set for each of us when we listen to it and trust in the universe. God has surely blessed me over the years and watched closely over me.
Jen Phelps will be the featured artist at the “Love is the New Vibe” Art show on October 2nd, 2021. She will be accompanied by Jamie Wade Carrie Knutsen Brenda Porter-Key Sadie Smith
Gardenia Hendricks, Jonah David Nodrog Nav Cyndi Kelley
Jen is a nurse and CSAC that works in Behavioral Health & Substance Abuse treatment.She grew up in Appomattox, Virginia, and now resides in Lynchburg, Virginia. Her career has greatly influenced her art over the years. She has even be known to use art as a healthy coping skill in her career working with clients.Jen has commented that artists such as Klimt, Van Gogh, and more so local artists Bobby Fuller, Christopher Townsend, David Heath, Kris Collins, Danielle Summers inspire her artistically. She leans towards emotionalism and expressionism style of art.you can follow her on FB, IG or follow her blog JenzPhelps.com
(More artist bios coming soon)
October 2nd,2021 classical pianist David Jeffress will bless the art house with the sounds of his music. Gretchen Casler Cline will open up for David with her amazing sounds.
Madison House of The Arts will have there donation table for electric space heaters at this art show. All heaters will go to families that are in need of extra warmth on December 18th, 2021. We will also be taking canned food items.
Please, join David, Jen and all the other talented artists for an evening of art & music 🎶 to help raise awareness on what our community’s needs are then join us to help meet those needs through the power of art.
Madison House Of The Arts 607 Madison St. Lynchburg, VA
DOORS 🚪 OPEN AT 6:00PM-10:00PM.
The Madison House of the arts is a 501 C 3, all donations are tax deductible.
(If you would like to be in a future show please emails us at firstname.lastname@example.org)
It’s been quiet some time since I have as an artist been truly inspired to do a painting or series of paintings. It hit me today, as I was in a training for PTSD.
I thought, wow… how raw is that. The emotional experiences people have and the things they overcome. I work with people every day as they tell me their own personal survival stories or war stories for some who still struggle.
I see the pain and emotions on their bodies, in their faces each day. How someone can smile, yet their eyes tell you an entire other story.
I see it in my own reflection at times.
PTSD comes in many forms, it reaches countless groups of people. It impacts us all in different ways.
The trauma we survive varies, from person to person. Everyone has a story to tell. Sometimes there is healing in this process when we allow it.
One small break or fragment of our lives doesn’t define us.
How we heal… that is what defines us. How we survive. What we choose to do with that pain & hurt, those are defining moments of our lives.
I hope you follow along as this new painting journey begins! I am excited to see where this road will lead me.
I have not really been journaling on here over the last year, not as I had intended. A lot has happened in the last year in my personal life.
It has kept me from journaling and sharing as much. It did at times focus my painting. I seemed to produce more artwork over the last year than I have in quite some time.
I even displayed some art in a showing recently with Madison House of the Arts at The Academy of the Arts in Lynchburg, VA.
Art is a funny thing; as an artist you must put yourself out there. I admire some of my art friends that have courage to put it all out there so openly. I am working on this process! It takes time. It’s like peeling back the layers, you know? You give so much of yourself as an artist in your art to start with. This is me, getting my feet wet again journaling with my art.
I got to get up and out of the house today! Out of that bed! I had my follow up appointment today with the Urologist for my post surgery visit. I learned the mass was positive for renal cell carcinoma. I knew this, it was positive for clear cell renal carcinoma and was considered to be Still in Stage 1.Turns out the mass was actually under 4 cm around 3.8 cm in size in size once they got into it. The imaging was wrong on the last scan.. This is a blessing. They feel they were able to get all the cancer out, during the surgery and it was successful. I will just follow-up with my doctor in 6 months and as needed with monitoring. And they did a referral for gentic testing. I got the ok to move around more! And lounge and swim… ♂️! So I am a happy and feeling very blessed girl. Just taking it slow and healing over the next several weeks. Much love to everyone for all the calls and well wishes and prayers and check ins! Still have some restrictions on lifting and such. But overall…. i see the road to recovery! I have to say…. it feels good!
Still one of my favorite versions of this song! I grew up on this song in church…. I remember so clearly Wednesday night Bible meetings it being sung and echoing in the small churches of Bethel, Trinity and Mt. Comfort…. it is funny; the memories we hold onto as we age!
Ready…. for the next phase of my life! I am ready to feel like I am back in control of my life!!! JUST want to move beyond this already!
This all began in November…. one accidental finding… Then what a domino effect…. This was supposed to be my year to focus on my career!
Seems like God and the Universe had other plans…
It has quickly become the year of learning self-care! I am exhausted, tired and just drained mentally. The emotional ups and downs of watching this mass grow inside me, to become known as renal carcinoma.; to accepting that I actually have cancer, to the reality setting in that it really IS cancer! That I AM having surgery, and that …. I have no control over my body….
These are very real and sobering facts…. Who knew there were so many different types of cancer in the world?
You know I have been a nurse for over 27 years! Never in my 27 years have I had a patient with renal carcinoma! I have had all types of cancer patients throughout my career, but never kidney cancer!
It’s funny…. people think (as I did) all cancer is the same…. protocol is the same! Actually not true! … who knew? Nobody tells you this…. Like they do not biopsy kidney or liver cancer due to how vascular they are. There’s too much risk of spreading the cancer in the blood to other areas of the body, so they use radiation or surgery to reduce or remove the cancer.
Good to know huh? Means you have to be able to catch it in time for a good outcome. Before it has time to metastasis to the blood or other areas of the body.
Did you know the kidney itself has no nerve endings? So that ongoing burning in my back…. the one I reported prior to knowing or discovery of the mass… The same warm burning sensation that has grown throughout the growth of the cancerous mass on the same side of the mass…. yeah that one! … has nothing to do with the mass!?…. (but… yet it does!)
Neither does the building of pressure in the back of my kidney where the mass is growing…. (says my surgeon) Note to ALL doctors! And Medical Schools…. here me loud & clear!
You need to adjust your curriculums to include Bedside manner! How to discuss symptoms that ARE to be expected with your patients!
As I referred back to day 1… and that pamphlet you gave me so eager to discuss treatment options! You left out symptoms…..! You forgot to discuss the actual disease! When I called back with symptoms…. you dismissed them… saying they were not related to the mass but clearly they are! As listed in your pamphlet! Or kidney cancer foundation website or hey even Urology Association all referring to symptoms of…. renal carcinoma. Which I stumbled upon googling my symptoms; as you bounced me back to my primary care doctor, who sorta bounced me back to you for a few weeks!… (I get it! Honestly I do…. I am afterall… A nurse, a healthcare provider.. I understand being over worked, having high case loads, being dictated to by insurance companies how to practice)…. BUT! I still…. make time to HEAR my patients out! Especially the ones such as myself that you know never seek out care!
I go get medically cleared for surgery…. as the last few weeks have been up & down…. the chills and fatigue have been unreal. I have been hot natured my entire life. Sleep with a fan, ac going full blast always…. people complain its cold to come visit me. I now sleep with flannel sheets and 4 blankets & a comforter plus a sweater on & pj’s!
WHO AM I?
What have I become?
I never knew what it was like to be chilled to the bone… not able to get warm even in the sunlight. Until now!
I am just tired!
Scared…. because today it all became real!
Today started a series of appointments that lead to surgery…..meet with the surgeon on the 19th Radiology on the 20th then pre opt on 5-21-20 get my CVOID-19 test & surgery 5-28-20
I had a good talk with my primary care provider today. He was truly amazing and I really am grateful for that! (Today,, I felt heard finally! He took time to really listen to me and hear me today). He let me vent about the bedside manner and not understanding why the Urologist didn’t explain more. He did a good job listening to me today. And I needed that! He also talked to me and explained my symptoms my pressure in my back building and the increased sediment in my urine & fatigue & chills being all from my cancer. Or related to. I told him a simple statement such as that is all any patent needs… to understand what is going on with their body.
I am not doctor bashing by any means! Both of my providers are amazing and smart i trust them both with my care! I like us all get frustrated however with the system & lack of communication.
I also am a horrible patient! I didn’t take someone with me to my appointments… WRONG! Always take someone else with you that can ask questions and help absorb the information! I was not thinking clearly, I was in shock…. I don’t think until last week it truly hit me when I couldn’t get out of bed! OMG I really (might) have cancer….. then harsh cruel reality hits when you are turning in your FMLA paper work and trying to make leave plans for surgery….
Saying it outloud! I have kidney cancer….. when your client asks why you’re going ou on leave….
That just starts another world of stress… how will they cope ..? While your gone? Well… hopefully you have done your job right during all this; and preparing them they will be resilient as ever!!!
I am struggling with… Letting Go! Of everything…..
I feel like after working two12 hour days…. If I can still smile and love my job after 27 years of being a nurse…. i believe God made DNA just for nurses!
I think when he was making up Nurses DNA he must have put on that check list… Must have: ✔sense of humor ✔multi-tasking a must ✔diversity of knowledge ✔willingness to wear any body fluids ✔ability to go days without sleeping ✔able to work 12 hours without eating or voiding ✔mind reading a plus ✔ peacekeepers ✔ empathy by the truck loads ✔ patience must have *double check ✔ ✔ grace under pressure ✔ love❤ for patients ✔ability to smile ✔ multitude of kindness ✔ better add in sugar & spice for good measure ✔☕ yeah…. never! Forget the caffeine….!
That outta do it!
That. . My friends!
Is what is in the DNA of a nurse! A bit tired, trusted, tried & true! But nurses are without a doubt The best kind of DNA To stumble upon!
The river has a way of calling to you…. it’s my home away from home…. it’s constantly changing, ever flowing… you never stand in the same river bed spot twice… the bottom is ever evolving, with the current. Every stone tossed makes a ripple effect, every fish, boat, tree…. it reminds me how connected we all are. It feeds, crops, animals, irrigation systems, flows into the oceans and into the tiniest creeks and streams…. There is power its beaty…. Yet, tranquility can be found in its sounds… If you aren’t mindful of her…. she can rage against you and reek havoc and self and the land around her… The river… is much like us!
So it calls to me… I go visit her… sit , listen, and marvel at her beauty… and all that God has created! It is a marvelous thing….. #jenz #jenzphelps #feedmysoul #emptyyourmind #justbreathe #findingmyzenagain #itsthelittlethings #seekingbalance #seekinglifeslessons #theriver #therivah #rivertime #riverrat #riverlifeforme