Tag Archives: cancer

A Few Good Men.

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A Few Good Men.

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On the six month anniversary of losing one of these good men…cancer won yet another battle, but we are here to remember a loving good man and keep fighting the good fight against cancer.

Karma Is A Funny Thing

I don’t usually write two posts in one day, but  I just have to.

There are a few good men in my life. I won’t name any names, but they know who they are. Well, except for my three year old, since he cannot read this yet…but he knows I adore him.

We have faced some serious challenges recently…but none nearly as bad as some of my favorite men…

I love them. They love me…unconditionally. Some may not be blood, but I have grown to realize this does not matter anymore…it is who sticks around, even when things get tough, that matter most.

And they matter…a lot.

It is not my journey or my story to tell for these men, but all I can do is let them know this…

I love them…I really and truly love them with all of my heart.

They watched me grow…

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Fifty.

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Fifty.

Fifty is a large amount…of time, money, hours, and even minutes.

It can seem like eternity waiting for a class to end that is fifty minutes long…

Or almost endless when waiting for those last fifty days for a baby to arrive, or a party that has been in the works for ages to come to fruition, or maybe vacation to start after months of saving and planning…

To some, it can seem like a lot of money, when you have not a penny to spare.

And it can seem like almost a lifetime when you share fifty years with someone…because it is.

Fifty years is more than doubled of the time that a person spends being reared by their parents…for most of us, that usually only takes about eighteen years…

Fifty years is longer than most will spend working at a job or career…which can be a relief at the end of a long drawn out lifetime of working at a job you couldn’t stand…

Or being saddened that it is time to retire from the one thing you loved almost as much as your family.

Fifty years.

We are almost at twenty years of marriage…and pray we are lucky enough to celebrate fifty…or more.

I know very few people who have surpassed Fifty Years of Marriage.

What an amazing gift.

Yet today, my heart aches for my Mother-In-Law as she celebrates a Fiftieth Anniversary…without her beloved husband.

A man she has shared minutes, hours, days building up to an amazing lifetime together…almost.

She lost her dear husband nine days shy of this amazing accomplishment, after falling in love, getting married, then creating a life together for themselves and their children, finding careers that they both enjoyed, traveling, and just living life to its fullest…

They shared losses of loved ones and friends and jobs and homes together too…

But these losses just brought them closer together.

And now we, today, respect my Mother-In-Law’s wishes to not celebrate this special day…her heart is too heavy.

 I know in my heart that My Father-In-Law is with her, holding her chin up and wiping away her tears…I know we must move forward with their strength as a couple…encouraging us to believe in our marriage and our family, and watch it blossom from love and loss…

In Fifty Years, I hope I am not alone, and I hope I am still here…with my sweet husband holding my hand and smiling at all we have accomplished…

I hope that I can look back at all those minutes and days, hours and years that would bring us to that special day.

Because my In-laws will celebrate today…

With tears of sadness and tears of joy…

Here on Earth and in Heaven…

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Their love story is not over…

And will never be forgotten.

The Lighthouse Keeper.

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The Lighthouse Keeper.

He climbed 228 stairs each week to the top of our State’s tallest lighthouse.

He volunteered for every board that would have him to help the sick, needy and poor.

He traveled around the globe countless times, in search of adventure and curiosty of this beautiful world we live in.

He worked hard to raise money to make hospitals better and YMCA’s state of the art.

He cherishes life.                     He cherishes family.

He devoted his life to his wife, in good times and bad, sickness and health.

He watched his children grow into successful loving and caring adults.

He adored his grandchildren…all six of them.

He is with us now, in spirit…holding on, fighting his hardest battle…not just for all of us, but most importantly for himself.

He wasn’t ready to go yet…he had so much life he wanted to live.

He is still loving us and proud…has told us so for all the accomplishments we have had as a family…

And for himself.


He wasted no time. He is a man who lived every second of his life waiting for the next adventure…his favorite fishing trip to Nantucket with his son and old friends, birthday parties and recitals for his granchildren, and holidays to share with family and friends…always ready to create more memories…

He is a quiet man. But has a lot to say…eager to share all his knowledge of business, travel, life with anyone who will listen.

He always has a smile and an open heart for anyone he greets…

He is our lighthouse keeper now...

He is lighting the path ahead. He will give us a gentle nudge when we think we can bare no more. He will make us climb those 228 stairs when we feel we cannot even get out of bed with heavy hearts.

He will give us strength to move on.

He will be at the top of the lighthouse looking out upon the sea, waiting for us to join him someday…

 And as we sit beside him now waiting for him to reach the top of the lighthouse,  we have comfort knowing he will guide us safely on our journeys…

For he will have the best view.

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Short & Sweet.

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Short & Sweet.

 That’s me…short and sweet! 

I am actually referring to this blog right now, as I struggled with my last draft, and even went back to seven other drafts to try to post something, but they too will probably hide forever in my drafts…

I don’t know what to write and have had little to no time to write anything other than a quick grocery list.

Life has been changing very fast in the past few months around here.

If I haven’t said it before, I will say it now...I am overwhelmed...in some ways good, and other ways bad…

I would say I will try to be optimistic and that I love my life, even as it moves at light speed right now…

But I cannot.

I am not having a “stop and smell the roses” kind of life right now.

I will not bore anyone reading this with the endless list of things making it crazy right now…because I know everyone faces challenges, and is overwhelmed and tired…even sad.

I can ask you for advice, and words of comfort, but if you are as busy and frustrated as me, will you have time for an honest answer?

I don’t know if I would…

So I will stick with this for an attempt at humoring myself…

I am short…five foot four inches to be exact.

I am sweet as well…when I can manage it.

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I will be back hopefully, with at least 400-500 words someday soon to make myself laugh, or even you…or vent about life as we all know it.

Miss this…

About Blank.

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blank

I am not exactly sure what this means in the computer world, but I know it is very similar to how I am feeling this week.

Blank.

Not sure why I am feeling this way, possibly because there is SO much going on right now, that I have shut down.

I tried to shut it down yesterday. Needed a RESTART button. I felt like I had to force myself to be happy when I woke up yesterday.

I did try.

And then I crumbled. I cried.

And cried some more. I don’t think I have cried that much in a while.

Then I just felt numb…

Blank. Void. Empty.

I thought maybe I should try to blog it out…get it all out in verbal diarrhea. But in the blankness, I felt like I have been failing at blogging as well…so why bother.

Woe is me…

I wanted to kick myself in the shins and tell myself to buck up. But I couldn’t. I needed to get it out. I haven’t felt that out of control of my feelings in a while…I would try to go about my day, so I didn’t keep upsetting the little ones…and the big kids too. They were great and supportive but it brought them down too. It wasn’t fair.

But I had to. 

There truly is so much going on right now, that I think I had been holding it all back for so long, that it erupted like a volcano. Oozing tears and sobs all day long.

I am okay now.

I needed those tears to wash away all of the stress and denial that I had been avoiding…the reality.

Life has been changing in this house at warp speed…high school graduations, college plans for two teens, countless summer jobs and schedules, sickness, cancer, family struggles, a growing business…it might seem petty compared to other problems that people are facing, but it hit me hard…all of us. But I guess, me being the most emotional in the house, I sucked it all up for the team.

I cried a little a graduation on Monday night, but it really and truly didn’t hit me until yesterday.

How different our lives will be in a few short weeks…forever.

The biggest blow has been with my in-laws…I came to realize how much I took them for granted…babysitting our kids at the drop of a hat…showing up for any and all things family-related…stepping in with preparations for parties days before and making food and treats for all occasions…and just simply always loving us unconditionally.

I have always known they love us and support us unconditionally, but not as much as until yesterday…maybe it is because I felt like I needed them right now…but they cannot be here. They just can’t. I wouldn’t dare ask them.

They have more important challenges right now, and a long road ahead…

My whining about all this despair and misery pales in comparison to what they are dealing with right now…shame on me.

But I had to.

I will not allow myself to feel guilty about this anymore…I had to find clarity and wash away all the confusion and muck in my brain.

I did it.

I woke up today feeling better…not great, but manageable. I am putting my best foot forward. I recharged my batteries on the beach today with my little ones, with the glorious sun blazing and a light ocean breeze keeping us cool…

I am not blank anymore…

I am blessed.

One Year.

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One Year.

One year is a long time.

365 days.

8,760 hours.

525,600 minutes.

And so on.

That IS a lot of time.

But what if?

What if someone said…that is all you’ve got left…

That’s it.

Well, then I am counting seconds too…31,556,926 seconds.

Each and every thousand of them.

And hoping that there is more than that…but if not? What would I do?

Well, knowing my weepy self…cry for atleast 12 of those hours…maybe steal a few more.

But on the hour I DO decide to stop feeling sorry myself, I will hopefully realize this…

I was just given  a gift.

My greedy butt was just given the Golden Ticket.

I would now know that I just wasted 43,200 seconds feeling sorry for myself. That I had places to go and people to see, and could have been half way to Disney with my family in the amount of time I spent blowing my nose and wiping my tears away.

So now that I have realized the Gift that has been given to me…the all-knowing…the fortune teller…the life sentence…whatever I compare it to…it came into my life for reason.

I will be THAT person…

I will travel, snuggle, kiss, hug, love hard, clean my house less, laugh more, get sad less.

I can be sad, but why? I know that each snuggle with my babies or husband means even more now…I should have known that before…but I didn’t…who truly does?

Those giggles or games of hide and seek with my kids, or seeing their faces light up one more time when they see Mickey Mouse or their favorite Princess at Disney, or when we pack up for a long full day at the beach…and then they all collapse…a sweet deep sleep after fresh sea air, hearts and bellies content and so full of love, and happiness. And I would stand over them, and be able to smile…and maybe shed another tear or two…as I realize that these are the moments that count…making memories of joy and happiness.

And even when the bad days might come, reminding my self that the Golden Ticket was given to me for a reason…

That I need to make amends…fight it out and make up…stop giving twenty second hugs…make them forty.

This is my fantasy plan of one year.

It is isn’t fair for anyone to ever receive that message…when someone has hopes and dreams and deserves to see them unfold just like any other person does…but it does happen.

I promise myself, that if it ever does…

I WILL let myself cry at all the things I may miss out on.

Then smile…and realize that every second counts… I will make the most of each and every moment...all 31556926 seconds of them.

Fair?

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So being optimistic and planning the future full of good times, travel and surrounding yourself with love and happiness with friends and family turns into absolute misery?

Fair???

How’s that fair?

To always play the game of Life fair.

To be honest. 

To be loving and caring. 

And then say “sorry, bud”…game’s over.

Really??? 

That’s it, huh?

No points for never being arrested, or abusive or neglectful?

No sympathy card for standing by the family when things just…well, hit the fan .

No bonus points for optimism?

And I guess. ..”No Get Out Of Jail” cards….

Well, damn it. I AM requesting all of the above. It  is not an option, God.

I am demanding it.

I know you are listening.

Because you have answered my prayers after yet another worrisome mammogram.

So what the heck???

Why in the WORLD are you ignoring this one??

Do you not sense my panicky tone? My desperation?

Where is the fairness,  right now?

Please tell me this.

Cancer. Does. NOT. Play…

FAIR.

Something About Mary.

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Mary is my middle name. Mary is my Mother’s name. I pray to Mary everyday…even more so when I am worried or afraid. I am not a Holy Roller, but find comfort in praying.

I prayed hard to Mary, and God, and my favorite Angels in Heaven (and pretty much anyone that would listen to me) on Tuesday that we would make it home safely to our children.

Then she appeared.

Mary.

I didn’t know her name. She came up behind us in the security line and made a joke about hoping to not have to run through the airport to catch her plane because the lines were so long.

That was it. We all made it through…then waited. Our flight was delayed. More waiting and more worrying for the big chicken.

Finally the time came to board…here comes my praying again.

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 (Reminding myself to bring the Blessed Mother like this one on my next flight)

My throat gets tight, I get shaky, my head spins…trust me, flying anywhere with me, is no fun. But I so desperately want to see the world.

So I muscle through.

I thought to myself I can do this…knowing how so many people wish they could be traveling…I can do this.

Then it happened… there she was.

The woman behind us in line in security was boarding our plane. We find that to be cool in a strange sort of way, when you see people from your flight or in an airport, at random times in a trip.

And wait…she couldn’t be…she is taking the empty window seat next to me in our row…woah.

That’s weird.

We exchanged pleasantries, my husband, as usual, fell sound asleep in seconds, and I am left alone with my thoughts and prayers and warnings of a bumpy flight…all to myself.

A little while into the flight, I checked my air vent…the nice woman next to me was covering up her chest and said I could use her air vent as well, it was bothering her…she explained she had a port, and it hurt for some reason…

This small comment turned into a funny, emotional, and strange conversation that lasted until we landed…

As we packed up our things,(I was relieved to be home yet thoroughly freaked out), she introduced herself…Mary.

Wow.

I know it is a fairly common name, but as she talked of family, and her illness she was recovering from, and trips she has taken, there was one similarity after another…I had started to think to myself…is she my guardian angel to get me through this flight or something more?

Near the end of our conversation, she was giving me strength to get through some challenges we are facing in our family, and comforting words…then she told me that someone in her church had told her she was like a Prophet of sorts…she was determined to take this trip to go help guide someone who was suffering and needed support…then she looked at me, and said “ya know, I think this kind of happened for a reason too”…I gently touched her arm and said “I think so too”…I then told her why…how each story she told me, was so similar to our life and things that were going on right now, that I felt she could be in it with us…I cannot get into detail of all the little things and big things right now…

But I can say, I am a believer…in Mary.

She may have been just a cancer survivor sitting next to me on the plane with a terrific sense of humor…or she could have been a prophet somehow…or all my praying sent her to sit with me to distract me from all of my fears…

Whatever it was, it worked…I will never forget that flight.

Or Mary.