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Day 1599 - Dear John

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Dear John, 1599 days have passed since we lost you.  I miss you.  I can't put into words how much I miss you.  It's a ripping, a tearing, a knife through the heart kind of missing you.  I dreamt about you last night.  Somehow, a bag of your things showed up and there were two shirts in the bag that smelled like you, still.  I gave one to Dad and told him to smell it.  I was busy pressing my face into the other one.  I might even miss your smelly feet . . . I was holding your nephew over the weekend, and I was looking deep into his eyes.  Your sister and I have been wondering if he's going to have his Daddy's brown eyes, or have hazel eyes like you did. On Sunday, as I held him, they were mostly green.  And his eye lashes - wow.  I asked him if I could have them and he said "yes, Grandma".  As we sat there and I tickled his baby flesh, I was so reminded of you.  I opened my mouth to tell him that Grandma used to have a little boy - and the tears instantly came

Dear John, It's Year 4 . . .Gold Stars and the DoD

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Dear John, Year 4. November 4. I miss you. That part doesn't change with days or months or years.  It's still a horrific hole in my heart.  I want to preface this post by saying these are my thoughts, what's been on my mind.  I'm not looking to argue or debate, I'm just sharing how I feel . . . The thoughts in my head have finally gotten to the place where they are keeping me up at night, and I miss sleeping. If I've been good at anything, it's sleeping. So this morning, I'm up before the sun to get these words out of my head, at least for a while. I always go back and read the "anniversary" posts so I remember what those years looked like. Year One:  Devastation.  Court. Utter sadness and disbelief.  Trying to understand and learn about addiction - Substance Use Disorder.  I shared your story hoping to educate others.  Well, the war on opioids is still raging, and it's worse. CoVid had not helped. The isolation has not helped. The dr

Fall, Cancer, CoVid and Girdles

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Fall.  🍂 It's beautiful, but it has never been my favorite season.  I think it was the major change from carefree summer at the lake, to back to school and back to the cold.  As I got older, I missed the kids when they got on the bus, Brian headed to the field all day and half the night, and the summer warmth that I so love, with its sunshine and water was shelved until next year.  I've definitely noticed some Seasonal Affective Disorder over the years.  Now fall is the time that John died.  With every red, yellow, and orange showing up in the artistic palette of the leaves, we get closer and closer to November 4th. October is the month I was diagnosed with breast cancer.  (Please get your mammogram). 💞 A friend asked me to travel with her to Florida last year in October, and honestly, while I wanted desperately to go see Mr. Golden Sun, I knew it would mean postponing that appointment yet again, as I was supposed to go in April, then August.  Between CoVid and family events

What Exactly Is This Blog Post About Anyway?

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John:) I haven’t written in a long while. Am I a grief writer? What about this whole cancer thing? Can I just write whatever – do a therapy dump? I guess I’ve been a bit confused lately, and to be honest, I just haven’t had the energy to confront all the thoughts and emotions of the last several months. But, I have some time today – and in all honesty, I think I could use some writing therapy. This post is probably going to be all over the place, but I think that’s okay – because so am I.  JOHN I will start with John because in all of this, speaking his name and keeping his memory alive is paramount. I started writing to help others and to help my heart. To help me process what I was feeling, and to reach out to other bereaved parents. I wanted to be as transparent as possible – to speak my truth and share the truth of other bereaved parents so they wouldn’t feel crazy in their grief and so I wouldn’t lose my mind. Over the last 3.8 years, I’ve done my best to stick with th

Rainbows, Unicorns, and Butterflies - J/K

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My mother-in-law once told me her 50's were her favorite.  I should have had a clue when on the morning of my 50th birthday, my previous German Shepherd, Sarge, had the worst case of diarrhea I'd ever seen.  In the house!  With people coming over for a meal.  I'm sure glad we can't see the future.  It's not always bright.  I won't say my fifties have been my least favorite, because of my grandkids, but they have been the hardest and most painful years of my life. Six years later, and we've lost our son John to the opioid epidemic, my Dad and I, along with my mother-in-law all hang out at the cancer center, and it definitely has not been butterflies, unicorns, and rainbows.  I have a standing joke with a friend - I type in "uni" on my phone and this comes up:  🦋🦄🌈.  It reminds me that while life is not all butterflies, unicorns, and rainbows, people prefer it when it is.  We have a natural human instinct to look for the good, to try and make it s

I Dreamt of You

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You came to me in a dream. They are rare, but I covet them so. You were yourself, just as I remember you. The dream was so detailed, so strange, so comforting.   Grandma was there too – my family intact. In the dream, Grandpa didn't like where I parked my truck, so he moved it. (He stills tells me how to drive). We were on Litchfield Avenue, we grabbed a pizza at the old Dominos location, and he was concerned our food would get cold. He parked the truck so well, so close to someone’s house, that we couldn't find it!  We told Grandpa we lost the truck and he said, "I parked it at Lavash's", a name I've never heard of, but how odd. Also in the dream, a friend gave me a card announcing the opening of a salon – it was very much in color. It was so blue - as if you took a piece of the summer sky and mixed it with the opalescence of seashells. I'll never believe the "experts" when they say you dream in black and white. Anyway, John, you backed

A Room With A View

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A Room With A View . . . My corner for the morning - a warm blanket and peanut butter & jelly toast . . .I'm all set Yeah.  Being facetious.  I can see some treetops!  The cancer center is BUSY!  Everyone is getting their after Christmas dose of life-saving poison and the nurses are trying to keep up.  I thought I’d bring you with me today, dear reader, (⬅️ Morgan 😂) and show you what a day in the life of this grieving, and now, cancer patient, looks like.   My appointment was at 8.  8:30 . . .I had my port accessed and headed back to the waiting room.  I saw the Doc about – 9:30.  He listened to my heart, squeezed my ankles, and asked how it went on Round One. I told him it went really great.  Then I shared my genetic results with him.  I'm BRCA 1 Positive - so this is definitely inherited and genetic.   His reaction was a little shocked, and he confirmed what Mayo said about another surgery.  So, after chemo is all done and I've recuperated, I'll have the bilater