Photography by Leighellen Landskov Photography
Meet Madison. She is Beauty Revived.
Maddie has been battling Leukemia for over 2 1/2 years. Despite innumerable set-backs, illnesses, and injuries resulting from her compromised immune system, Maddie continually smiles and spreads joy…weather at the hospital, in school, or on the volleyball court. Maddie is the picture of hope, optimism and joy. She lives a life of character and love.
Maddie’s journey began at the age of 11, when she was in the 5th grade. Maddie lost her beautiful blonde hair, dropped 21 lbs, and was covered with a painful rash. After months of excruciating bone pain, severe headaches and shortness of breath, Maddie was diagnosed with high risk Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia and given a 76% chance of survival. She accepted her diagnosis with grace and courage. She immediately became a testimony of character to her family, nurses and doctors as she took on a battle that left her without an immune system and non stop nausea. During lengthy hospitalizations and intensive chemotherapy regimens, she never quit smiling and daily encouraged others around her with her pure, innocent faith. Phillipians 4:13 became her daily source of strength and encouragement.
It was not long before Madison realized that there was a whole world of hurting and sick children. She was quick to see that God could and would use her to be an encourager and source of strength to other children, both with and without cancer. She used her own money to purchase soft fleece fabric and make blankets for other kids in the hospital. She took great joy in delivering them to other patients. Though she never spoke of her own fear or complained about the painful procedures, it was clear she drew her strength and comfort from Jesus, and was always ready to share that with anyone who asked, often leading prayers in the hospital. Each time she was hospitalized, she would write thank-you notes to each doctor and nurse involved in her care. She even wrote encouraging notes to the housekeeping ladies! Each card always ended with a reference to Phillipians 4:13.
Maddie constantly seeks ways to spread love, joy and hope towards those around her, despite her constant pain and illness. She does not seek attention or pity. One day, she took all of the many pills she takes and formed them into a shape of heart. Her mom said “that’s how my baby approaches it!”. Maddie has refused to let the leukemia drag her down and win. She is a true, valiant fighter. Maddie says cancer has taught her to “enjoy life while you have it and appreciate the little things.” Throughout this 2 1/2 year battle, Maddie has maintained an A average in school and continues to play volleyball. She inspires everyone around her to be their best! One of Maddie’s middle school teachers says “Maddie is an inspiration to both peers and teachers, to those who have and have not met her. She has never lost her faith as she fights daily for her life.”
Maddie just finished her last round of chemo and recently had her port removed from her chest. But is Maddie done with the fight? NO! She recently contacted the American Cancer Society and is organizing a “Volley Ball Girls for Leukemia” fundraiser. The fundraiser will run from Dec 2016-March 2017. Her goal is to raise over $2,000. Maddie wants anyone who is willing to listen to know, that when the unthinkable happens, God has a plan. Though cancer took a lot from her, it never took her hope or her joy.
About the Photographer
My name is Leighellen. I’m a light loving, connection craving photographer who splits my time between the mountains of Denver, CO and the beaches of Seattle, WA. Most days you’ll find me curled up with a good book, snagging some sunshine, and chasing my 3 boys.
Photography to me is a gift from my heavenly father that I can use to bless others. I don’t see pictures, i see connections and grace and beauty and joy. I am constantly learning, growing, and being inspired by new things. I feel very blessed that God enables me to bless others through something that brings me great joy. Proverbs 3:6 states “In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your path.” He is the one who has made me creative, and I am eager to bless others with artistic portrait work that shows just how glorious his creation is to me!