A New Day

One cannot live the afternoon of life according to the program of life’s morning; for what was great in the morning will be of little importance in the evening, and what in the morning was true will at evening have become a lie.  -Carl Jung

One the aspects of life that has always fascinated me is how we wake up one morning, living and planning our future, and go to bed that evening with a very different agenda. One that is laid out for us. One we have little control over.

Those of you who have been reading my blog for the last few years, know I haven’t been around much lately. As I wrote early in the year, my wife was diagnosed with breast cancer last December and we had some work to do to get her back to where she was. Well, we’re almost there. It’ll take some time before she gets back to where she was when this started but she’s doing really well. She’s a tough out and doesn’t back down easily so I’m sure she will handle recovery as directly and aggressively as she dealt with treatment. Surgery, six months of chemo, and four weeks of radiation all ended this past week. So the physical healing begins.
As I wrote back then, we are fortunate. It was caught very early and it didn’t spread so everyone is confident that what she went through is all she will have to go through.

I don’t know how to write about this journey, for lack of a better word. So many people fight their own individual battles with all kinds of dreadful and debilitating illnesses. People young and old. I can’t speak to those and I really don’t want to write about this but I don’t know how to come back here and pick up as if nothing happened, without some sense of closure before moving on again. It seems….disrespectful… to anyone who has ever experienced an illness.

I don’t know how to write about what I’ve seen. A few years ago when my grandson went through treatment for cancer, (he’s doing very well by the way), I wrote about it initially and again near the end, before I moved on. A child dealing with cancer, or any illness is, for me, just a violation of all that is good.
It’s hard to put these images and feelings into words. When you go to a hospital, you see all kinds of situations and a range of why people are there, from the serious to the happiness of newborns. When you go to a center that does nothing but cancer you know why everyone is there. It’s a very humbling place. But it’s also a very hopeful place.

I can’t dwell on the eyes of some of the people I’ve looked into. We don’t know each other and in some cases, never spoke, but they will aways be in my prayers, just as the parents of those children whose eyes I looked into remain with me years later.

We have been blessed to have such great family and friends around us through this time. The support we’ve received; the prayers and meals, the phone calls, cards and little gifts have meant so much. Friends have called to arrange lunch and breakfast dates when my wife had her better weeks, and all of these things mean more than we could ever express.
People surprise you during times like this. Those who we knew but never heard from much in the past or who we never expected to hear from, stepped up in ways that touched our hearts.
Of course there are a handful that populate the flip side but there’s no point wasting time speaking about those individuals..:)

Reaching out to someone during times of difficulty or loss means so much to those in need. If you know someone who’s in that situation now, please don’t ask them to let you know if they need anything. They’ll never call and really, it’s not the way it’s supposed to work. It’s up to each of us. Be the person who does. It’ll make both of you feel so much better.
Thank you to those who reached out those few times I showed up here, and all your prayers. It is very much appreciated.

Hopefully you’ll be seeing much more of me in the future. Of course that can be a good or bad thing, depending on your perspective…:)

Stay well.

PS…..I have about 2500 posts to read. .I’m not sure when I can get to them, but hopefully in time  I’ll be able to make a dent. I apologize for not getting to them earlier.

 

 

74 thoughts on “A New Day

  1. Osyth

    *Be the person who does* … this should be ingrained on all our hearts from earliest childhood. Banish the awkwardness and foolish worry that you might be in the way or unwelcome and just do it. The sage-est advice from a man who knows. I wish your wife, now that her treatments are finishes, a recovery that is smooth and uneventful and I wish you all the joy of life together free from the dread sword of Damocles that threatened over your heads. Welcome back to la-la-land – it’s always wonderful to ‘see’ you and I look forward to whatever you feel like sharing going forwards with absolutely no apologies needed if you don’t read a single one of the 2,500 😊

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    1. George Post author

      Thank you, Osyth. Your comments always make me smile and feel better. You’re right, too often people think they don’t know what to do and do nothing. But we all know doing something is always better than silence.

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  2. RetirementallyChallenged.com

    Good to see you back and to know that your wife is close to where she was before her diagnosis. Thank you for your comment about those who say “let me know if…” As anyone who has faced a serious (or, sometimes, not so serious) illness or life challenge knows, those words are often hollow, a way for the “concerned friend” to check a box and feel good about themselves. “Be the person who does”… yes. I’m not surprise to know that you and your wife felt surrounded by the love of people who do.

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    1. George Post author

      Thank you for your very kind words and for writing what I was thinking. I didn’t know if I should say it as you wrote it but you’re right, people feel better saying those words but they’re just words. Most people will never ask for help and we should never put them in a position of doing that. Just offer. Do something. Anything will be appreciated…:)

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  3. Anne Mehrling

    It is so good to see you here again. You wrote movingly about the things you experienced, tugging at my heart strings. I pray your wife will soon be feeling topnotch and that your life together will be filled with peace and joy.

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  4. quiall

    The one thing about a community is that we are all here to help each other. There may be distance between us but I will think and pray for you both. In the bigger scheme of things it might not be much but it is done with compassion and truth. Be well, to the both of you.

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  5. Kate Crimmins

    I went through something similar 15 years ago and was amazed at the people who came out of the woodwork to help and those really good friends that I didn’t hear from. From this perspective I know that people react differently and some just don’t know what to do. I love your comment on doing rather than asking. There is never too much food in the fridge or errands that could be run by others. Hope your wife gets back to her “normal” soon and you come back to blogging.

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    1. George Post author

      Thanks, Kate. I know you’ve mentioned going through this in the past, and yes it was very surprising the people who showed up and those few we didn’t hear from at all. I’ve heard the reasoning about people not knowing what to say or do because they’re uncomfortable but I’m not buying it. I’ve always said there comes a point in any relationship where you find out all you need to know about someone. I learned a lot about people through this. Fortunately, mostly all good.
      Glad to be back, Kate. I’ve missed your stories..:) I’m glad you continue to do well.

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  6. DailyMusings

    So good to see you here George- I have thought of you and your wife often and many times through these months, hoping things were going “well” and progressing positively. I volunteered for many years in a hospital and was often told by patients that part of their recovery was not just the medicines that were administered, but the show of support and caring that came from friends.That is what brought the true healing. Having an illness is life changing, I do hope you and your wife will move forward and in time the experience will be less present in your life. I do look forward to seeing you here again more often. All the best to your and your wife.

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    1. George Post author

      Thanks so much, Lisa. You’re so right about the support from others being a great healer and emotional lift. It’s a strange experience not having the constant restrictions, concerns and time restraints we’ve lived with. It becomes your life and at times it’s all consuming. Moving forward will take a little time but we’ll get there soon enough. Thank you again for your thoughts…:)

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  7. thechickengrandma

    No apologies necessary George, for being behind on reading posts. People will understand why you haven’t been on here and if they don’t …well…..I would not worry about those.
    So glad to have you back and to hear your wife has gotten through the treatment. Will keep you both in my prayers.

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    1. George Post author

      Thank you, Faye. I’m not sure I’ll be able to read them all with comments but I’d like to at least read and catch up. I appreciate your continued prayers and thoughts. They mean a lot.?

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  8. Book Club Mom

    So glad to see your post – I was thinking about you and your wife and hoping you were both doing well. You have expressed your situation so well. I am glad you have friends and family close by. And you’re right, even the smallest gesture can mean so much. I’m looking forward to having you back in my feed!

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  9. uju

    George, it’s so nice to read from you again. I wondered, right after I finally got my head out of the sand, why you’d been quiet. I’m so sorry about this and happy she’s better now. My prayers are with you and the madame all the way to full recovery 🙂

    Your post is very thoughtful and has given me something to think about 🙂

    Peace and light xx

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  10. JT Twissel

    You don’t know how much I wish I could say I know no other person who’s going through what you are but these days so few of us can. I have been through very dark days and had people turn their backs. For some reason they think misfortune is contagious. I guess that’s all I can say otherwise it sounds like they did indeed catch it in time. Don’t worry about keeping up with blog posts. I absolutely hate the idea of people reading my blog posts out of a sense of obligation. Hugs, Jan

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    1. George Post author

      You’re right, Jan. Seems like we hear this more and more. And based on what I’ve seen, it is not just for older people. So many young ones.
      Contagious…I’ve often wondered the same thing. Maybe people are afraid if they hear about it, it’ll happen to them. I really don’t know.

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  11. Wendy

    George, it’s so good to hear that your wife is coming through everything. I’m so glad. It is an indescribable journey, impactful in so many ways. My prayers stay with you all. God Bless.

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  12. Dale

    Dearest George,
    I am so sorry I missed the post letting us know about your wife’s health. Had I read it, I would have sent my best wishes back then and continually. So, know that my love and strength and best wishes are being sent her and your way.
    The hard part is done. Let the healing begin.
    Lots of love and hope and good vibes,
    Dale

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  13. Lynn

    George, how lovely to hear from you & to know that you are feeling supported & loved through this journey. I think many are so afraid of saying the wrong thing & that there are no words to ease the challenges being faced. Instead they fall silent.

    When my husband was sitting by his sister’s bedside last year in her end days with pancreatic cancer, he called me one day from the hospital, feeling very distraught as he had no idea what to say to her. My response to him was to just take her hand, let her know you are right by her side & that you love her. Sometimes there are just no other words.

    Wishing your lovely wife continued healing & wishing you both love, support & friendship always!

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    1. George Post author

      Hi Lynn. I’ve been thinking about you these last few months, wondering how you’ve been doing with your own challenges. I’m sorry I haven’t been around to keep in touch.
      Your words to your husband was the best advice you could have provided in that moment. All that mattered is that he was there for her. It’s such a helpless feeling for those of us who have to watch and feel powerless in these situations. Thank you for your kind words. I pray that whatever you were/are facing is much better. Stay well, Lynn. It’s always good to hear from you..:)

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  14. Ann Coleman

    First of all, thanks so much for this post! It is so nice of you to take the time and let us all know that your wife is doing well, and that her treatment is over. I hope that her recovery is both speedy and complete.
    I knew why you were taking a blogging break, and you and your whole family have been in my thoughts and prayers ever since. I was really, really hoping for good news, which is why I am so happy to read this.
    And thanks also for reminding us all how important it is to reach out to those who are struggling, rather than wait for them to let us know what they need. Sometimes it’s enough to simply call and let them know we are thinking of them, even if they don’t want anything else we have to offer. The important thing is just to reach out and let them know they aren’t alone. I’m so very glad that you had people doing that for you and your wife.
    Don’t worry about catching up on blog posts…we’re just glad you’re back, and thrilled that your wife is on the road to recovery. Take care, my friend!

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    1. George Post author

      Thank you, Ann. It’s always good to hear from you. I appreciate you keeping us in your thoughts and prayers. You’re right, we don’t have to do anything elaborate for someone who is facing a challenge in their lives. A phone call to let them know you are thinking about them works wonders emotionally and can life their spirits. But I know you understand that..:)
      Stay well, Ann.

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    1. George Post author

      Thank you and I’m so glad you’re doing well. You’re right, too many people have gone through similar experiences. Makes one wonder why so much of it. Stay well, Jo.

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  15. murisopsis

    My oldest friend was just diagnosed with breast cancer. It is a devastating situation however we are all hopeful that since it was caught early and hasn’t spread that she will have a full recovery after surgery and radiation…

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    1. George Post author

      Unfortunately it has become an all too common occurrence. They have come a long way treating different cancers, including breast cancer. Every story, situation and treatment is different but if it was found early and hasn’t spread, that’s good news. My prayers for your friends complete recovery. God bless.

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  16. candidkay

    I am so very glad your wife is doing well. That’s a blessing. And I wish her continued good health. As for the faces/eyes/expressions you’ve seen in hospitals and treatment centers–oh yes. I’ve seen those. And they put my world right, in an odd way. Because they remind me of what’s important. And how quickly we lose sight of that each day. I now try to remember. . .

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    1. George Post author

      Thank you for your words, Kay. I now you understand all too well. You’re right, those images put everything in perspective, in ways we should never forget. I hope all is well. Take care.

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  17. aginggracefullymyass

    Such a ‘real’ post George… A beautifully written piece with a view into your heart and soul. So glad your wife is doing well! I know that much of the credit goes to you and your unwavering support. And also glad your grandson is doing well. Every time I see those St. Jude commercials on TV, it makes me cry… Prayers for your wife and grandson to continue their journeys to wellness!

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  18. oldmainer

    A new day indeed George. One of many to come. I think I may have told you before, but my wife is a cancer survivor. I have been where you are. I have seen the hollow eyes of those receiving and supporting those receiving radiation and chemo. More often then not, there is not a lot of conversation, and to hear someone laugh is the most beautiful sound in the room. It is hard to express your feelings, although I think you did it quite well. Words of trepidation. Words of hope. Words of faith. Words that all say the same thing. The love of my life is not well, and I can’t change that. I have to learn to deal with it and I hope I am strong enough to do it. You may not think so, but you are. You will be the reason that she overcomes this. You will be the one constant when everything else it upside down. God bless you and your wife. You will both remain in my prayers.

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    1. George Post author

      Thank you so much. Your words reflect the heart of someone who has been there and understands. I do remember about your wife’s challenges. You have written eloquently about it in the past and your words have remained with me. I have kept both of you in my prayers. You are the reason she is. It’s always good to hear from you. God bless you both.

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  19. Pistachios

    You have been missed on the blogging scene!
    This was a very touching post. I work in a facility that makes chemo medication, but we never see the patients (just their name and other details). This is a good reminder of why I do my job. Thank-you for sharing your and your wife’s experiences. And good to hear she is on the road to recovery

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  20. Ilona Elliott

    That’s excellent news George! I’m so happy and relieved for you, your wife and family. While it’s never easy to watch our loved ones battle illness, it’s the only place we would want to be isn’t it? Life’s struggles really do give us an appreciation for life, for people who are helpers, for medical professionals, and for the texture and focus that enduring such things brings to our character. Good to hear from you and many best wishes for continued improvement in your wife’s health.

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    1. George Post author

      Thanks so much. You’re right, it isn’t easy. Such a helpless feeling but as you said, it is the only place we want to be. I appreciate your thoughts and words. Stay well.

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  21. In My Cluttered Attic

    George, I am saddened to read that this awful plague has been visited upon your family yet again, but overwhelmingly happy to read that your wife is making progress in her recovery. Things out of our control are the worst, but particularly when it pertains to us personally and to those we love. Better words I wished I had to offer you other than to say thank god things are improving, but I hope those words let you know how much our thoughts and well wishes are with both you and your wife and your entire family during this time.

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    1. George Post author

      Thank you, Paul. You’re right about having to deal with things that are out of our control. The best we can do is control what we can and keep moving forward. Thank you for your wishes. They are appreciated.

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  22. roughwighting

    What a beautiful, meaningful, HOPEFUL post George. I’m delighted to read that your wife is strong, strong-willed, and on the road to recovery. Any illness/disease is upsetting for the person dealing with it, but in some ways, I think it can be even more disturbing for those who have to watch their loved ones go through the pain and fear of defeating the disease. I’m quite sure you have been an immense loving support to your wife, and its made a world of difference.
    So glad you’ll be back to the blogging world more regularly soon.

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    1. George Post author

      Thank you and you’re right, it is difficult to watch someone you love have to deal with any kind of illness. I’ve seen too many faces recently that I can’t forget. But you can’t dwell there. You have to move on..:)

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  23. Lori

    George, I just read this and hope that all is still going well in your wife’s recovery. Thank you for the tips on what to do for those who are struggling with a health issue. One can never tell if it’s a day when the person needs to be alone, or needs someone to do something.

    Your family has been through so much. I’m glad you are hopeful. God Bless you and your wife.

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  24. Miriam

    Hi George, I had no idea your wife was battling cancer but I guess that’s the thing on WP, we all get on with our lives and only show a fraction of reality. Don’t ever feel that you can’t jump right back in. We’re all here. I’m so pleased to hear that it was caught early and that she’s on the road to recovery. I have no doubt the whole experience has been humbling. You and your wife and family have my warmest wishes and prayers.

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