Saturday, June 30, 2012

June 30, 2012 - How We Met Blog Hop



Reading about the How We Met Blog Hop on My Write Spot today, I decided to jump in!

“Dating” on the Internet, phone and via postal mail in 2004 – and Dave’s marriage proposal on the phone in Spring 2005 - we met in person for the first time at the airport in Washington, D.C. in June 2005.  I was there as a survivor advocate for the Lance Armstrong Foundation; Dave came over to share those few days.

Our Internet meeting was pure karma and a casual friendship at first, swiftly becoming something we both recognized as deep and enduring.




Tuesday, June 26, 2012

June 26, 2012 - On My Mind . . . Exit Choices

You may or may not know I am an 11-year breast cancer survivor.  Although the cancer is gone from my body, it still is a part of who I am, my history – physical, spiritual and emotional.

Let’s set the scene, shall we?

For over a decade, you have been battling cancer.  While it is metastatic, you have had some periods of months where your health has been stable – not great and with discomforts and issues; however, overall the majority of your time has seen you very, very ill.

We’re not talking “ill” as in the flu, but violent systemic effects from treatment and the disease itself.  At one point you opted out of conventional treatment for the purely holistic approach.  Sadly, this has not worked, so you are now once again undergoing traditional treatment, albeit ultimately too late in the game.  The cancer and the treatment are manifesting in symptoms such as ascites, bowel obstructions, joint pain and swelling, vomiting, extreme swings in metabolic chemistries and all sorts of ugly unpleasantries – and the foreseeable future doesn’t look any better.

You will not be cured.  What you are now experiencing – these unpleasant symptoms, this tortuous existence – this is it.  Due to your physical condition, you cannot leave your home except to attend medical appointments.

Your savings and virtually every asset you had were invested in alternative treatments.  You are now on the brink of being a welfare candidate, leaving you and your spouse with no retirement savings, no savings period.  You are struggling financially, although you do have health insurance.

You are in your mid to late 50s in age.

What would you do?  Or, rather, what do you think you would do?  No one can say definitively their course of action, thoughts or feelings until one experiences it firsthand.

As a survivor, I have probably thought more about Death and issues such as this more than many people. 

The last couple of days, I seem to keep asking myself questions I might ponder if I were in such a situation. “Why keep on? Why not just try to find some peace and let go?  Why keep torturing myself and those around me who care for me?” 

I like to think that I would say, “Enough is enough.” and bow out as gracefully as possible, releasing myself and my loved ones from torment.  I don’t see that as “giving up” or letting the disease “win.”  I see it as making the most of the time I would have left, being able to glean some enjoyment of people and experiences and making my peace with people, Spirit and myself.

Of course, that is one decision for which there is no reversal.  When you turn out the lights, they’re out. 

At least in this world.

I have seen both attitudes – those who struggle to continue until the inevitable outcome and those who opt for packing their remaining time chock-full of what I call Life – loved ones, experiences (that last camping trip, for instance), getting their structural, financial and spiritual houses in order, and so on.

My Mom discontinued treatment and transitioned peacefully in her sleep.  Cousin Karen opted out and left this world literally with a smile on her face.

Again I mention that there is no cure, and what you are experiencing is the way it is going to be until the end.  It ain’t pretty and it ain’t gonna get better.

My personal belief is that the latter of the two paths embraces the pure spirit of the Warrior.  I like to think that is more of leaving on one’s own terms, not letting the disease “win” if you will, not letting it beat one down until there is literally nothing left.   

Of course, both paths are choices, neither one being right or wrong.

In case you’re wondering, this is conjecture – it is not me.  I’m fine as frog’s hair, actually.   In my early 50s,  I feel more like I’m in my 20s.  Better, actually.  Well, most days!

It’s just on my mind.

What do you like to think you would do?

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

June 13, 2012 - First Guest Blog Interview!


Today I am honored to be a guest at The Death Writer, a blog which I feel should be required reading for everyone, not just you folks who follow blogs.  Pamela does an excellent job of approaching the subject of Death with honesty and compassion.

I hope you will take a couple of minutes to visit The Death Writer and check out my interview.  I’m excited because it is my first interview spot on a blog.  I am honored to be part of Pamela’s work of enlightenment on the subject we all will one day experience – Death.

Thanks for stopping by!  Now go write!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

This is My Name in the Moonlight


An exercise from The Writer’s Retreat Kit

By Any Other Name

“This is my name in the moonlight.”

“She Walks With Bear” - this is my name in the moonlight.

When Darkness envelops the land and the Moon watches over us, I feel no fear.

I walk with Bear.

I feel no fear of the Night, as I have known Darkness of the Soul.  In that black and sad place, Bear emerged from the shadows to stand by my side and guide me into the Light.

From that time, I walk with Bear.

The Night holds no fear for me; it is filled with the presence of the animals who shun daylight and glory in the cool moonlight.  How could I be afraid walking among them with Bear by my side?

As the shadows deepen and the world comes alive with the sounds of the Night, do I feel fear?

No, for I am strong in body, mind and spirit.  My guardian and protector – Bear – matches my steps, stride for stride.

My name in the moonlight is “She Walks With Bear.”

Friday, June 8, 2012

June 8, 2012 - Writing in My Mind

We are on holiday until next Tuesday, June 12, attending a trailer rally in Lancaster, PA.  There are 17 other Montana owners here with their rigs.


I envisioned hours-long stretches of uninterrupted time to devote to my WIP.

<insert snort, giggle, raucous laughter here>

You know what?  I’m not beating myself up about visiting with folks and spending touristy-quality time with my hubby.  We have certainly made some memories on this wee getaway, although not by design.

  • A truck in front of us “blew up” on the way here along Interstate 78.  You can read about my Sarah Connor experience by clicking here.
  • Want to hear about our second cheating death during a runaway Amish carriage ride?  Check out   Intercourse was a Wild Ride  to read about yesterday’s adventure!

For whatever it’s worth, I am writing, albeit not on the WIP.  I guess it’s all good, eh?  We still have two full days here with no plans in place, so I may make some progress yet.

If I don’t . . . well, who cares?  I’m having fun and relaxing!


Thanks for stopping by!  Now go write!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

June 3, 2012 - Insecure Writers Support Group


Insecure Writers Support Group

First Wednesdays you’ll find a post here as part of the Insecure Writers Support Group

Although this post is not “due” to go live until Wednesday, we will be going on vacation, moving our rig, on Tuesday.  The campground where we will be staying is supposed to have WiFi, but just in case we have trouble with their system, I’m posting this entry today.


This is my first post as part of the IWSG.  With that in mind, I’ll just put it out there, insecurities I have regarding my project:

  • Finishing it.
  • Navigating my way through the legalities of nonfiction; “the people are real but the names have been changed to protect the innocent” and so forth. 
  • Editing it in such a manner that it will be acceptable for publication without compromising my intended message.

These are issues which are in my control; I can do something about them.  As I am a fledgling in the “serious” writing world, still flopping about in the nest yet knowing I have wings, there is no doubt in my mind that more “what if’s” and “how can I’s” will make themselves known as I journey on this path.


I am honored and excited to be part of the IWSG and look forward to reading the blogs of others in the group, getting to know them, learning, sharing and encouraging as we indulge our shared passion.

Thanks for stopping by!   Now go write!