Write In Between

Monday, August 28, 2006

10 Years Cancer- Free

Today, August 28, 2006, I celebrated 10 years cancer-free.

To mark the occasion, my husband and I went to the 9am Mass at our home church, then went out to breakfast. Then we tended to a myriad of family-related tasks throughout the midday, only to find each other again around 5pm to escape out to dinner at a local Mexican restaurant. We toasted life with every thing we did today! And I'm so glad that he has been the one who has shared this walk with me, and been my closest friend through it all.

You know you do alot of living in 10 years... I am truly grateful for every breath and every day and every hug and every tear. Here's a few of the glorious (and some random) statistics:

By the grace of God's merciful hand I have...

...seen 10 more birthdays, and 10 more wedding anniversaries (Our 24th will be this Oct. 23rd.)

...celebrated not just my birthdays, but those of my immediate family! I saw my husband thru another 10 years, plus I saw one kid go from 3 to 13, the next go from 6 to 16 and the eldest from 9 to 19! That's 50 birthdays in all--and not even counting the extended family and good friends!

...I've been privileged to make several Spiritual Pilgrimmages: 2 to Fatima, Assisi, Siena, and Rome. Plus I've lived a CURSILLO (DeColores!) and made numerous retreats.

...traveled across the US to the West Coast and back, as well to parts of the world with my family (thanks mostly to hubby's frequent flyer miles): England, Portugal, Italy, France, Canada, and USVI, BVI, St. John.

...I have eaten 3650 dinners (not all made by me, but most of them!)

...lived with 2 dogs, 2 hamsters, 30 fish. (Not all at the same time.)

...enjoyed the blessing of 2 popes.

...gone from squinting to "readers: to bifocals.

...purchased 5 cars, 4 major appliances, and an untold number of music CDs.

....went from a landline to a pager to a cell phone (to ultimately having teens with them too! Yikes!)

...witnessed my perennials grow.

...saw my new parish church built.

...took a job, work it for four years, quit the job to come "back home."

....worked countless volunteer hours at 3 different schools and at church.

...'lived to tell about' putting an addition on our home.

... joyously had two kids with first communions.

...rejoiced over 2 confirmations. (One more to go....)

...recently got choked up at one high school graduation.

...finally, saw the first one off to college.

...completed 30 credits towards the Masters Degree in Theology (only 24 more to go!) (Why am I blogging? I should be studying!)

...began a blog. (Oh yeah, that's why.)

...published numerous articles.

...took up XC skiing, but even better, returned to downhill skiing after a 13 year hiatus.

...received a new setting for my engagement ring, courtesy of my boyfriend! (That same guy named above!)

...have driven to and from 888 music lessons.

...supervised 240 months of my kids' homework (not to mention my own!)

...have taught two teens how to drive and sat in the back seat for two successful road tests.

...have read all of Jan Karon's Mitford series.

...have had 11 crowns added (not to my head) to my teeth.

...saw countless special occasions like baptisms and communions for nieces and nephews, report cards, school events, sporting events, dance recitals, and other notable achievements of family and friends.

And I have my loving savior, Jesus Christ, to thank for it all.

I am living The Cure.

Copyright 2006 Patricia W. Gohn

Bookmark and Share

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Time for Goodbyes

This summer has been nothing but preparation for good-byes. And things have reached their culmination. Within the span of one week, I have attended the funeral of a dear friend, and prepared to pack the car for my first-born son's departure to a college 500 miles away from home. I tell you, its a double-whammy emotionally. It's why I've been missing in action here at the blog. And despite the appropriate sadness I feel on both occasions, I feel peace begin to vibrate in my soul.

My dear friend was a holy soul who died following a terminal illness. She died the way she wanted to: at home, with her loving family nearby, and with the comfort of the Sacraments. And so I am happy that she now lives--no longer restricted by an ailing, painful body. For my part, I did what I could for her, and now I let her go to God. I will miss her smile and her company, but I will forever be enriched by her influence. And yes, Lord-willing, I hope in the resurrection and that day when we will meet again in the company of saints and angels.

My son has been grieving a bit too. His girlfriend left a week ago, and he's been out at night saying goodbyes to his other pals. His father and I have been keeping close enough to keep track of him, and far away enough to let him set the pace. But now we are down to the final hours that he will be home.

The packing and sorting has been tedious. I'm trying to be helpful, not pushy, and so it goes, this dance between parent and man-child. And yet, I'm feeling the coming distance. And praying for him every day. Yesterday was our "last Sunday Mass" together as a family for a while. I'm praying that wherever he is next week, he will stay close to Jesus in the Eucharist. I think he's ready. I'm not. But I hear its normal for me to be experiencing these intense emotions. I know my heart is expanding. I am finding consolation in that "Parents Weekend" at the university is only 6 weeks away and my hotel is already booked. If only this son could x-ray my heart, he'd know that I love him with a depth I cannot adequately explain, and that I'll miss him profoundly when we say our goodbyes this week.

And yet, there's a peace spilling over me even still. He is going to Catholic college where he received a scholarship and where he already feels at home somewhat--small enough for professors to know your name, and large enough to have Division I basketball. And daily Mass. What more could I ask for?

And so, it is time to say it, for both my friend and my son: goodbye... for now. I love you, I'll miss you, and I'm praying for you. Looking forward to when we meet again.

Copyright 2006 Patricia W. Gohn

Bookmark and Share

Monday, August 07, 2006

One Book...

The One Book Meme has been making its way around the blogosphere. Here's mine. Feel free to add your own in the comments section for the benefit of all...

One Book That Changed Your Life: The Bible, especially 1 Peter, Ephesians, and the Gospel of John.

One Book That You've Read More Than Once: Life of the Beloved; Henri Nouwen

One Book you Would Want on a Desert Island: (Besides the Bible?) How about a Navy Seals survival guide? Or a guide to the edible plants in the world?

One Book that Made You Laugh: Morley and Me; John Grogan

One Book that Made You Cry: The Wedding; Nicholas Sparks

One Book You Wish Had Been Written: How to Pay for College Without Taking Loans

One Book You Wish Had Never Been Written: The Da Vinci Code; Dan Brown

One Book You are Currently Reading: Philip Neri, The Fire of God; Paul Turks

One Book You've been Meaning to Read: Catholic Matters; Richard John Neuhaus

Copyright 2006 Patricia W. Gohn

Bookmark and Share