Update: Episode 49 (12/19/16)

Title of today’s episode:  Its the most wonderful time of the year!

As 2016 quickly comes to a close, we harken (feeling old English-ey) back how it began for us.  I had just gotten into remission, was just getting ready for another transplant, hoping for better success the second time around.  Flash forward to now, we are so thankful and blessed how well things are going.  We had an appointment this past Friday, and my doctor said my blood counts looked good and she was very pleased, so much so that my next appointment back at Hopkins isn’t till March at my 1-year post transplant date!

This super news just adds to the blessings of the last 4 weeks.  We had a wonderful visit at Myrtle Beach with family for Thanksgiving, including lunch with some very dear friends from the Navy, and horse back riding on the beach!  On December 2, I became a 3-year cancer survivor (your status as survivor begins when you are diagnosed).  Last weekend, we helped move Shannon into her apartment in DC (she loves being ONE subway stop from work), and the next day cut down our Christmas tree for the first time in a few years (its really big – and Terri is VERY happy). This past Saturday we slogged through the freezing rain to participate again in Wreaths Across America by laying Christmas wreaths at Arlington National Cemetery.

My biggest issue right now is my shoulders are really sore after I got another 4 immunizations in my latest visit, on top of 5 in September and 2 more upcoming in February.  When I feel like complaining, I remember the alternatives and say “shots…bring them on”!  Other than that, things are good, although my now curly dark hair is thinning a bit from the chemo drug I’m still on.  We haven’t had curly hair like this in the family since Connor was like 3 years old.

We hope all are looking forward to the upcoming holidays, and spending time with friends and family to celebrate your blessings.  Among all the shopping madness, I’m trying to smile at folks and laugh and help people relax.  You get a lot of looks like your crazy, but you also get smiles back and hopefully make someone’s day a little better.

My emotions these days are summed up with this story – I was scraping about 1/4 inch of ice off the car this weekend so we could go wreath laying.  It was pretty difficult (and helped to work out the kinks in my shoulders) with snow flying around while I scraped. I starting laughing and shouted “its so great to be alive” like a crazy man.  It was just another day in this amazing life of ours, and we’re loving every minute of it.  As Tiny Tim said  “God bless us, every one”!

God’s Blessing, Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays,

Paul and Terri
Terri’s PS:  I am happy with our Christmas tree and some of you may recall in 2013 when we went to Food Lion at 930p to pick out our tree and we had to pick from eeny, meeny, and miny, but not moe, because there wasn’t a moe to pick from – only 3 trees on the lot.  This year we got MOE.  It’s a MOE tree, moe height, moe width, moe branches, so it has been aptly named Moe.  It’s great to feel as though we can sort of slip back into almost normal life – really great.  After 3 holiday seasons that have all been nail biters, it feels good to be more relaxed.

Update: Episode 48 (11/16/16)

Title of today’s episode:  What a relief!!!

I know…you’re probably thinking this is another note about the election being over, and no more commercials, blah blah blah.  But for me the relief is I made to another birthday – actually it was Wednesday the 9th.  I’ve always said every day is precious, and they are, but birthdays are even mo betta!   (can you tell I lived in Hawaii for 3 1/2 years??).  I’m looking forward to as many as I can get.

I”m continuing to do and feel well.  My last blood test a couple of weeks ago was deemed “fine” by my doctor, and I’ve been doing work around the house.  I got to play some golf last month and Sunday and had a blast.  Playing with me now is kind of like playing with a pretty spry senior citizen – can’t hit it far nor straight but we’ll have a lot if laughs!

I’m taking my first flight this coming week and looking forward to see how air travel has changed in the past year (I’m guessing for the worse but hoping for “status quo”).  We are looking forward to a “road trip” to Myrtle Beach for Thanksgiving – and more golf!.  I actually enjoy long drives (and this one will be 8 hours) so call me crazy.

We had an amazing experience speaking at our church last month, sharing how the wisdom we’ve developed on our journey has helped us get through it all.   We received some very kind words from many folks and were glad we could do hopefully help some folks going through their own challenges.

After all the craziness from this past week, what I’m so thankful for is the opportunity to live and enjoy each day, and take what ever adventures life throws our way.  

God’s Blessing,
Paul and Terri
Terri’s PS….The weather this Fall has been really cooperative and Paul and I have gotten out several time in his “toy” with the top down to enjoy all the colors God has put into the Fall leaves.  Be sure to take time to pause and enjoy the little things!