Friday, July 20, 2018

the last 24 hours + remembering judy

well kids, the last 24 hours have not been uneventful around here.

this morning i woke up with a rash and welts (that itch like you can't believe) all over my body. by noon my nurse had me go straight to the er again as they had spread across my face and we were worried my throat would start to close because my tongue was starting to swell.

evidence below of left arm. other parts were worse than this. i will spare you pictures. you are welcome.

so barrett and i again spent the better part of our day in the hospital. the irony after getting discharged yesterday afternoon. i finally got discharged today and the culprit was the antibiotics they started me on last night at home (sidenote: can i just say how happy it makes me when drugs they give me to cure infections give me infections?). in the hospital i was getting liquid meds through my port. the prescription for home was for capsules. apparently, my body just gave a big "hell no" to the capsules so we are trying another brand. i am now on antibiotics and my favorite - steroids - to deal with rash and swelling. good times, good times. can't wait to see the fun tomorrow brings.

did i mention cancer can suck it?

moving on to something dear to my heart and way more important than the above paragraphs...

when i was in the hospital this week, judy put down her cancer fighting gloves for the last time and went to heaven to be with her family that was there to greet her. judy told her daughter kris (my high school bf) that she was sad to leave her family here (two kids, her husband, six grandkids, etc.) but also knew she would see the family that had gone before her. judy and her family have a tremendous amount of faith, during one of the last days, kris told me it was like god was holding one hand to have her come with him, and they were holding her other to stay with them longer.
this is the two of them together. what a gorgeous picture of two gorgeous (inside and out) women who i have been lucky enough to have in my life longer than they haven't been.

they both have taught me so many lessons. 

judy welcomed me into her home with open arms when i was a kid and her house was like a second home to me growing up because i was there hanging out with kris all the time. i remember...her sitting on her porch reading or just looking at the lake from their porch, or reading her books in the front room, working outside in her garden, having girl chats with her and kris, seeing how much she loved wayne and the kids simply by the way her eyes lit up when they were all together, getting to eat her good food, getting to watch her dance with wayne at kris's wedding and at mine (and they were so smooth on the dancing floor everyone just kind of watched in amazement and could tell they were still head over heels in love after all the years that had gone by). but what i will always remember the most is that when i think of judy the first word i will always think of is love. she always made you feel loved.

in the last words she wrote on her caringbridge site, she said something that will stay with me forever. with kris's permission, i am sharing judy's words here:

"May ninth surgery.  I’m in ICU when pastor Brian comes to visit.  A very nice visit with words that allude to miracles.  When leaving he asked how he could pray for me.  I asked him to pray for a miracle; I still believe in them.  Well, after this week’s news I don't feel like the miracle so many of you have been praying for will come to be. 

But last Thursday I woke up after a vivid dream which was clear about one thing.  I’ve got my miracle. Looking back on my life I have experienced many miracles.
A wonderful wholesome family with my two sisters
A beautiful childhood home on a country street surrounded by many cousins, friends and church family
Marrying my best friend who is the love of my life
Two wonderful children in whom we are so proud and their wonderful spouses
Six precious grandchildren whom I love and whose love surrounds me every day
A warm comfortable home in a setting which nourishes my soul
And most of all, my beloved  friends.  They are all unique and I cherish them all.  My beautiful faithful friends who have walked this four year journey with us
Yes, I consider all these things to be my miracle.  I have been blessed with a miracle each day as I get out of bed and praise our Lord.  The water, the sky, my birds; all of our adventures.  Camping, traveling, sailing, living in Arizona.  Fellowship and prayer groups.  I’ve been given so many miracles."

i wrote something that i asked kris to read to judy. one of the parts was that as a fellow cancer fighter, i will never forget these words. you are always looking for the miracle, and sometimes it can be easy to forget the miracles you already have.

i thought it might be a good reminder for all of you too in whatever miracles you may be hoping for in life.

if you asked me, i would say that judy was one of the most special miracles i have ever met.

rest well judy, you made my life better and i will never forget you. and thank you for giving me a best friend that all these years later, i still have and get to laugh with, cry with, and watch as our kids and our selves move and grow up through life. she is the best gift you could have ever given me, a miracle in her own right.

i love you and like so, so many others - i will miss you but will carry you with me for all my days to come. 


1 comment:

  1. What an incredible reminder ... thank you for sharing Judy with us.

    Hope the steroids help the reaction soon, with NO counter reaction!