Posts tagged cancer
Fumbling My Way Through Birth and Death

I’m an “old” mom. My son arrived just ahead of my 35th birthday and before that year my husband and I weren’t sure we wanted to be parents. However, after my father-in-law died unexpectedly, the conversations about having a family of our own became more frequent. We faced the grim reality that if we didn’t stop riding the proverbial fence we may have a child whose grandparents never knew him. So when my mom was diagnosed with stage three anal cancer in April 2015, her positive biopsy swiftly led to my positive pregnancy test four short months later. I was not at all prepared for what was to come.

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My Mom Was a Runner

My mom was a runner. I don’t know when or why she decided to run, but once she began it became a very important part of her day. Up at dawn, she put on a tattered baseball cap, equally worn t-shirt and shorts, and Nike Air shoes. She carried a stick and a pocket full of dog treats. A dirt path around a quiet, desert golf course was her domain as the sun began to rise. She didn’t have an easy life. There was little peace in her life apart from running. This was the one thing she did for herself. An introvert, she rarely socialized outside of family. Life had ups and downs and she had concerns about various family matters, finances, and other things. But for an hour each morning, these were put aside as she allowed herself to feel the emotional freedom that comes from the movement and breathing that accompany running.

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You Can Do Hard Things

I come from a tight-knit family. We love each other deeply and keep in touch, whether via text or in person, often. So, when one member is hurting or celebrating, the rest of us feel it right there with them. Last fall, three huge events happened in our family’s life that were met with a strange mix of joy, grief, and fear: I gave birth to my first child, my oldest nephew passed away two weeks later, and my mom – our rock – was diagnosed with a serious case of bladder cancer two months after that. To say my emotions were in overdrive is an understatement.

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Cancer at 23: How it Changed Me for the Better

The moment I found out I had cancer, I was sitting in my cubicle at the first job I had gotten after graduating from college. My biggest worry that day was finishing my Christmas shopping, as the holidays were just a few weeks from then. That was going to be my first Christmas together with my family since moving back from college in Minnesota, and I was so excited to spend time with those I loved. With one phone call from my doctor that afternoon, after a set of yearly routine tests, my entire life was flipped upside down.

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