When You Wish Upon a Star – My Magical Month of May!

May was a BUSY month! So many amazing milestones were reached I’m still not sure if they all happened. Every day I look at all the pictures taken over the last month & I thank the universe for allowing me to be a small part of it all.

It all began with double graduations from the University of Rochester for my son & his fiancee. We weren’t sure what would happen thanks to Covid-19 until a few months prior. It wasn’t exactly ideal but what matters was I saw them both in their caps & gowns, heard their names called & what every parent dreams of; watching them both walk the stage to receive their degrees. Well, degree covers. There were five ceremonies in all spread out over three days. The big commencement & two-degree major ceremonies for each of them. All streamed live for parents and loved ones to see.

The Graduates

Immediately after the pomp and circumstances, we switched into wedding mode. They chose to get married in my daughter-in-law’s home state of Oregon. I don’t know how they planned the wedding while attending their last year of college AND working. All the while not even sure it would all happen due to all the restrictions and rules for the pandemic. If it weren’t for her parents, it would have been a nightmare for both of them. When it comes to inlaws, Adam won the lottery.

Rehearsal Dinner

They had a beautiful day weather-wise. Their ceremony and reception took place outside. Making for an ideal setting. Clear blue skies and warm temperatures all day. Actually, it was damn hot.

If it had been a contest of who cried more, Adam won. Hands down. It filled my heart to see all the emotions he was experiencing. There was no doubt just how much in love he is. The bride was stunning. She glowed with happiness as her father walked her down the aisle.

After the ceremony, there was a lovely dinner, toasts to the bride and groom, something called The Shoe Game that involved all the wedding guests and llamas. Yes, llamas.

Llamas Anyone?

When I returned home, I was given the all-important task of babysitting their five cats and dog. That week I was literally a cat herder. No easy task I might add.

The newlywed’s honeymooned at Disney World in Orlando, Florida. They had a fun and relaxing time. I won’t lie, I was a lil bit jealous.

Epcot

When I began this blog, my biggest goal was to see Adam graduate from high school. If someone had told me I’d be there for that and so much more milestones in his life I would have laughed and laughed. I never let myself hope for anything beyond the one goal I would set for myself. I was too afraid of hoping for things I’d never be part of. Cancer forces one to not look too far into the future no matter how optimistic. I don’t say this to put anyone off or to be a downer. I say it because of how grateful I am. I must acknowledge how incredibly lucky and appreciative I am.

Which brings me to share, with gratitude this last bit…

Just in case anyone doesn’t understand the photo above, these should do the trick!

I’m going to be a *gulp* GRANDMOTHER!!

Truth be told, I’ve known for a while. This has been the HARDEST secret to keep. Those that know me, understand how physically painful this was. I was SWORN to secrecy until other family members were told. Nothing is worse than finding out about important life events than on the internet. So, how long have I known, you ask?

I have a magical new goal!

Purr

I have been blogging for 5 years and I’ve never had a guest blogger. Not because I didn’t want to but more so in that, I didn’t realize it was a thing. Whelp, it is and today I have invited a longtime Twitter friend to take over. I introduce you all to Michael. He hates cancer as much as I do but for different reasons; he’s also a solid blogger in his own right.   

Without further adieu……


It’s 2:25 pm

overcast

This is the first time that I have been invited to share a blog post and I have been wondering what to write about. Our gracious hostess Susan said I could write about anything and so inspired by my fellow writer Radha, I decided to share this:

My wife Lori Ann and I loved cats, during our time together we shared our house with 4 cats and her nickname was Kitty.  I had given her that nickname even before we first met and it fitted Lori perfectly. What made this so much fun and fitting is that Lori didn’t see herself as a cat person, she had always had dogs growing up.

But after graduating from Western Michigan University, she went to work for a big department store and rented a cute little one apartment from an older couple, the Caves.

It was here that Lori discovered her inner cat so to speak when she first inherited Carolyn Cave’s moms’ cat, Geraldine. It was supposed to be a short term foster but Geri and Lori bonded very quickly and so Lori owned her very first cat. That went well and Lori enjoyed coming home to see a happy face welcoming her home. Of course, Geri had issues whenever Lori had to travel for her job for weeks on end. While Geri knew Carolyn, she really missed Lori when she was gone and soon whenever Lori pulled out her suitcase, Geri would hop in and wouldn’t want to leave.

Then Lori started seeing another cat that would be slinking around looking for for some food. It turned out that this was Junior and when his human had passed away, the son basically tossed Junior out on his own. I met this man sometime later and had the pleasure of telling him what an asshole he was in no uncertain terms.

Well, Lori being Lori felt really bad for Junior and renaming him OSK, began a campaign to give OSK a home again. This was much easier said than done as we later on suspected OSK had been abused by the son and had his trust broken.

Lori, aided by her dad, built a warm shelter for OSK in her garage and put food out. Winters are brutal in Michigan and a small cat outside, well they don’t do so well. Add in the fact that Lori learned OSK was declawed on his front paws and you can understand the urgency in which Lori had in trying to rescue him.

Slowly OSK started to trust her and she remembered the moment he let her pick him up and was able to hold him in her jacket for 10 minutes. She told she cried so many tears that they froze on her cheeks. Then as spring popped up, OSK decided to trust Lori fully and came into the house on his own. He curled up next to Geri and fell asleep for hours.

OSK was nicknamed “the ghost cat” because no one ever saw him, he always hid when Lori had company. When I visited Lori from California, I had told her I was a “cat whisperer” and by the end of my 10-day visit, OSK and I would be pals. It wasn’t until the 9th day when she came home and found OSK sleeping on my chest.

Now while I called her Kitty and she loved the nickname, she was a bit shy about the name when she was at work or with her peers. So we came up with “purr”. It was our word when we were out and about. We had a hand signal that we flash (cat gang members, yo!!) across a crowded store of family function and it meant “Purr”. The other person would shrug their shoulders in acknowledgment. Soon “Purrs” became so automatic that when the word was said, shoulders here shrugged, even when she was asleep during chemotherapy. Chemotherapy?? Why of course, this is a cancer blog, isn’t it?

I would whisper “Purrs” in her ear after her chemo was done and while most of the time when I or one of her angels would nudge her awake, Lori was sluggish and sleepy, whenever I would say “Purrs” her eyes would open wide and she would smile the most beautiful smile.

Lori entered hospice in May of 2013 and even as she faded, her long journey complete, she still would make the signal for “Purrs” and I would laugh and shrug my shoulders, we had done this so long it had become an automatic shoulder shrug. I still will whisper it once in a while, mostly when I see Lori in my mind’s eye as we were doing a fun activity or shopping, living life. Its a reminder of a wonderful soulmate and I hope you enjoyed reading it.

My thanks to Susan for allowing me to share this with her readers.

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Paladin the House Cheetah

You can follow Michael at The Inner Circle and I hope you do.

Would You Love Me If….

Would you love me if I burned dinner?

Would you love me if I forgot to buy toilet paper?

Would you love me if I dented the car?

Would you love me if I left Christmas shopping to the last minute?

Would you love me if I’d rather stay in on a Saturday night?

Would you love me if I forget to put gas in the car?

Would you love me if I hate to fly?

 

 

Would you still love me if I had a miscarriage?

Would you still love me if the doctor said it’s Cancer?

Would you still love me if I had scars from surgery?

Would you still love me if I no longer had breasts?

Would you still love me if I lost my hair?

Would you still love me if I could no longer work?

Would you still love me if medications made me moody?

Would you still love me if I couldn’t go out because of chemo side effects?

Would you still love me if the doctor said it was Metastatic?

Would you still love me if you knew I was going to die?

 

Will you love me…….now?