All About Jetty!
Updated About Me:
My life hasn’t gotten too much easier for me since I started this site in 2009 but I have accomplished so much in the past few years. I just graduated with my master’s degree in digital arts from Goucher College. I went to Japan again in 2013 to see my first roommate Mayuka get married and I will go this year to meet her adorable baby girl Akari. For my ten year cancerversary I got the trip of a life time from Rich, we went to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Orlando. It was four days of the most fun I have ever had. I was able to charge things to the room and I was able to eat whatever I want and do whatever I want. Celebrating ten years was a huge deal because I am not supposed to be here. Every single year it is a big deal to me but ten years is a HUGE deal! I lost my best friend Young to a new “girlfriend” which was pretty devastating but I have the best people in my life especially my guys! Rich and Kris have become the most important people in my life. The family members I keep in contact with, I cherish. I have done more in the past ten years than I ever thought possible. I have opened my own business, started my own charity, traveled to Japan, went to a game developer conference, created some amazing artwork and some delicious, beautiful cupcakes and desserts, and grew so much as a person. I have experienced things that others would love to experience. I have a 3D printer that I am able to take my creations and turn them into real life objects. I have an Oculus Rift (a cancerversary present) that made me realize that I might want to pursue VR as my PhD program. I am working hard on a move to the West coast. It will hopefully be the middle of this year. Overall I am quite happy with how my life is going. It is not without hardships. Besides residual side effects, pain disorders, high inflammation and the normal money and life stresses, I am doing quite well!
Lots of changes since my original About Me
My family is much smaller than before. I lost my kitty and all of my small animals but I still have two kitties and my doggie. I no longer work for Manneristic Studios but I do still run a great contract studio atLagomorph Studios and I have a portfolio on my own art website as well. I now have so much love surrounding me and I am really looking forward to this year and the future.
Original About Me:
ME? You want to know more about me? My story? Okay. It was never easy for me. I was born a poor black child. I remember the days, sittin' on the porch with my family, singin' and dancin' down in Mississippi….no wait that wasn’t me! That was Steve Martin in the Jerk! :-P However, the never easy for me part is pretty true. I’ve worked hard for everything in my life. My name is Jetty Ann Kircher and I was born in Illinois to a working class family in the middle of nowhere. I am an artist and I have found my love in games and 3D modeling for animations. I received my BA in Fine Arts from Illinois State University and completed most of a degree in Media Arts and Animation before lack of school funding cause me to drop out of college. I have a minor in East Asian Studies and have been to Japan twice, I hope to go back soon as I was planning on returning before I was diagnosed with cancer. I live with my husband, 4 cats, 1 dog, 1 skink and 2 anole lizards and two fish tanks and a frog. I hope to work for a gaming company on the West coast as soon as possible, but want to be able to help as many people as I can as well. I am a member of several environmental and social causes groups, and I enjoy volunteering very much. It’s hard for me to write about myself, my myspace took forever to write!! I know firsthand that cancer is hard, but I also know you can beat it if you stay positive! This is particularly important for Young Adult Cancer survivors, which are some of the hardest hit cancer survivors. We are “Too Young” to have cancer but not too young to live our lives as it nothing even happened paying bills, working jobs and maintaining insurance. It’s absolutely ridiculous! Plus, there are almost no programs for Young Adults, see my area on AID and LINKS for more information on this. In the beginning of 2005, I was never sick, I had no allergies, and birth control was the only pills I was on. Now, I have an allergy list that is a page long and is carried in my purse everywhere I go, I’ve had more hospital visit than most people my age, and up until a few months ago was taking giant horse pills twice a day every day. This is what makes me: me however and I love me! I was fired from my job recently for a totally lame made up reason but it pushed me to open the studio I have always wanted, so if you’re in the need of custom art check us out, Lagomorph Studios and also to build my portfolio for the job I want. I currently do contract work at Manneristic Studios and they are fantastic. If you need animation work, check them out: http://www.manneristic-studios.com/. I am hoping to have a little blog here where I can update and share any really interesting charities or projects I’m working on, but we shall see if it gets updated enough. I tend to put too much on my plate at one time. Well that is about all I can think that you would care to know, but if you desire more then check out the Drop me a Line section! ^_^ However if you are here, you probably want to know my cancer story, so here it is in a nut shell, stolen directly from my Writing and Composition course. Enjoy!
Cancer: A Way to Re-Evaluate Life’s Important Aspects
The first nice day of spring fell on April 4, 2005. My day began at 5 a.m. and ended at 4 p.m. It was an ordinary work and school day. The sun was shining like a spotlight and the unbearable heat was occasionally broken by a sweet spring breeze. I decided to start my new routine of walking home. Three miles seemed like a breeze after a semester in Tokyo. My jacket clinging to my hips in the newfound spring heat, I regretted leaving my water in my office. While walking, I chatted with my best friend from Korea, Young. After trekking for about 35 minutes, I arrived at my house. With no formal plans, the library’s anime section was beckoning. My best American friend Lauren and I set off on the four block stroll to our local library. The sun was abnormally bright and obtrusive. When I stepped across the threshold of my house, I was amazed by the fluttering dimness of my living room. The subtle sound of the shower resonated through the house. I journeyed through the bedroom to tease my boyfriend of seven years, Kris.
“Get out of the there” I playfully yelled as I banged on the door with both hands, “It’s the police! Come outta there!”
When I turned back towards the living room, my brain was in slow motion. Four steps seemed to take a lifetime. At the door frame, Lauren started to come towards me with a smile on her face. Then I saw the ceiling, the wall, my oriental dresser, Lauren, a confused horror look on her face, the ceiling, the wall, dresser, Lauren. Cold tears were streaming down my face and a strange, unnatural laughter was erupting from someplace deep inside of me. My mind could not grasp what was happening to me. As if miles away, I could hear Kris and Lauren talking. The most I could hear was a vague voice.
“I think she sprained her ankle. She’s laughing and crying like she hurt herself… Maybe she bit her tongue, but she won’t answer me.” Lauren said.
“Honey? What’s wrong? Honey, stop. Come here. Lauren, something’s wrong. Call an ambulance.” Kris blurted.
For me, it was black until I was awoken by the shrill sunshine stabbing my eyes. Paramedics were asking me questions. Their mouths were moving blankly but nothing was registering. Once on the ambulance, fear took over. Desperately I tried to explain that I am terrified of needles. Pain shot through my body as I cried and cried. Kris, who had taken his spot in the front seat, touched my head. I pleaded for him to make them stop sticking me. My memories are a fast forward haze of the Emergency Room doors, and hallways. Medical jargon was flowing like water above my head. The next vivid memory is waiting in Room 19 with Kris and Lauren. After some “routine tests”, I assured them that I was completely healthy. I was merely dehydrated. I apologized for not drinking any water, and asked for a glass. My short, curly blonde Doctor came through the curtain. Her shinny Blue and silver name tag read “Dr. Bohn”. My brain flashed to that early 90’s response of “He He He He Bohn! Her name is Dr. Bohn.” Her grim expression brought me back from my childish thoughts of sexual names.
“You have a tumor. You will need an M.R.I. Please take off all metal. I’ll be back in a moment.” She said, as she left the room.
As expected, Lauren and Kris were shocked and scared. My brain relayed to another totally useless response. “It’s notta tumah” the Arnold Schwartzenagger voice resounded. Kindergarten Cop was one of my childhood favorites. After my M.R.I., I was checked into the Neurology Unit. I was incredibly doped up, but I remember small clips of memories like an old damaged movie reel. I met Dr. Nardone, the nuero-surgeon. My family came up to see me from the St. Louis area, and the hospital denied me water. The water memory is crystal clear. I merely wanted a small glass of water. They gave me a tiny cup of crushed ice. My surgery was at 5 a.m. on the 5th so water was prohibited. To my mind, my surgery was instantaneous. I remember waking up early to bright surgery lights and lots of people, then waking up again in my bed with a warm, white stocking cap on my head. To my loved ones, it was several tearful, terrifying hours. Apparently, the surgery was very delicate and could result in a loss of motor skills and brain loss. My tumor was the size of a baseball and grew in around 1-2 months. Dr. Nardone, unbeknownst to me, informed my loved ones of all this terrifying information and graded my tumor as Stage 4. Stage 4 is a terminal stage. A glioblastoma is a root like tumor that spreads tumor growing veins through the brain like weeded roots in flower beds. My thought process was to document my life. The day after my surgery, Kris brought my Nikon to capture these moments. My pictures are a happy and optimistic view of a survivor. I started my photo book “Jetty’s Brain Book”. This day affected my whole life and still affects me to this day.
Yesterday was my one year anniversary of being diagnosed. I spent it divulging in Japanese steak and chicken and luscious cheesecake, with Young and my fiancé Kris. Sometimes life offers only two options: complain or conquer. I view my cancer as something I survived. I make jokes, create art based on my struggles, and live everyday as if it could be my last free day. The reality is that I could get sick again at any moment, but no one benefits in viewing the negativity. I have been through it all and I am prepared to do it again.
When I had TV I had quite a few shows I loved Castle, Once Upon a Time, Harry’s Law (which never should have been cancelled!), and SVU to name a few but now I mainly only watch Netflix and YouTube. Some of my favorite loves of all time are below. I am really loyal to the things that I love and I am very open and have a diverse taste in everything from music to move to video games. It takes a lot for me to hate something, so there are very few things that I dislike in life, I jump right to hate. This is a list of things that I love.