Everyday Miracles

What would you do if you believed you had less than five years to live? I now have a realistic answer to this question.

I’ve mentioned before that I’m lousy at the yoga pose, Downward Facing Dog. I mean REALLY LOUSY! My shoulders and upper body give out quickly. I lose my breath and my heart races. I happened to mention the ‘breathlessness’ part to my doctor. I had visited her to discuss some inexplicable random pains in my upper arms. “Hmmm,” she said. “Let’s order a chest x-ray just to be safe.” That was May 3. On May 10, my doctor called me back in and asked my husband to join us. That did not appear to be a good sign. The words “loss of mass in your upper lungs, thickening of your lung walls and a three-centimeter shadow at your lung center” stung in my brain. “Suspected Pulmonary Fibrosis” was written on the x-ray report. That definitely was not good news.

A CAT Scan was ordered as the next step. In British Columbia, it’s currently a minimum two-month wait for that type of exam. I was given an appointment date of July 6. In the meantime, my husband and I prayed and read. What we read was not encouraging. It was the opposite of encouraging.

Pulmonary fibrosis is the scarring of the lungs. It is a progressive disease which makes breathing difficult. Treatment options are limited as this disease currently cannot be reversed. The survival rate for most patients is less than five years. Source.

My husband and I met with our doctor again. She was kind and sympathetic but did not try to placate us about the potential road ahead.

Instantly and simultaneously, my husband and I knew how we wanted to live the rest of our lives, regardless of how much time either of us had. I wasn’t experiencing any symptoms (unless you include breathlessness from my least favorite yoga pose)! Richard and I wanted to get out there. We wanted to live our lives as fully as possible. We wanted to remain active and adventurous for as long as we could. Truthfully, we wanted to be even more adventurous! We wanted to relish in our family and friends and be there for them, without burdening anyone. We wanted to remain grateful for every single day that we had. And, we wanted to be in it together.

We decided not to share this information with anyone until we knew more. After we received the scan results, we would decide how to proceed from there.

With incredible good fortune (and a bit of cash), we were able to get a private scan done in Vancouver. Remarkably, we were able to do this in May instead of July. There were exactly two weeks between receiving the original x-ray report and my CAT Scan in Vancouver. There were then two more days before we could find out the scan results. (Total time span: May 3 – May 25).

So what did we do during that time? Mostly, we did what we usually do. We walked dogs for the SPCA, went to the gym, spoke with our sons and my niece on the phone/Skype, hung out with friends and attended local events. We continued our planning for our Camino Trail hike this coming summer. I went to book club and yoga (and yes, I kept up with my attempts at the dreaded Downward Facing Dog). I was also extremely fortunate to be able to spend the week of Mother’s Day with my parents (which was amazing). Oh, and I also wrote a guest post on ‘Happiness’ for a blogging friend of mine. Lying underneath all this was a heightened appreciation for all that Richard and I have, and for all those whom we’ve been blessed to hold so dearly in our lives.

And, I have never felt so loved. Richard was amazing. How could I selfishly want more?

I quit reading about the disease. I would make a plan with my doctor once we had conclusive information. I continued praying. In prayer, I fully believed that everything was okay, even though my recent chest x-ray suggested differently.

“I believe in miracles,” I told Richard. “A single lab report is not going to get me down. It does not have my consent!”

Then, late last evening when I was leaving a Newcomers’ meeting, my doctor called. The CAT Scan of my heart and lungs was ‘completely normal’ for my age, height, and weight. The three-centimeter shadow was a benign air-cyst that posed no danger. The loss of volume frequently happens with age. I was given a clean bill of health!

I hung up the phone and relayed my doctor’s message to Richard. We were filled with intense love, gratitude and the unwavering knowledge that miracles, both big and small, happen every single day. It is this knowledge and emotion that I wish to keep at the center of my life for however long my life may be.

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89 Replies to “Everyday Miracles”

  1. Donna I am so relieved for you. Living happily is my mantra these days. I don’t need to live large but I do have to live happy and I let nothing get in the way of that.
    As you may have read on my fb posts I was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer last year. I was so very lucky. So many people with the cancer have vague symptoms for 5-8yrs before diagnosis. I had no symptoms but the largest tumour made my intestine collapse on itself. This sharp pain started me on a quick journey of many miracles where I have had surgeries but no need for treatment and the specialists feel I will never be bothered by this again.
    I have had complications from the surgery but I deal with them knowing I am cancer free. Not many people get to have it as easy as I have.
    Loving my friends and family and doing those things I can to be peaceful and happy have always been important, but they now have a new meaning and for that I am grateful xx

  2. I was so frightened for you as I read your post. What a horrible thing to have hanging over your head. But you immediately identified the things that were important to you and went about living your life in love and gratitude. I am in awe of your strength and resilience. I am grateful to God for his mercy and blessing on your life. I believe in miracles too! God bless you and your family.

    1. Hi, Randy – Thank you for sharing this. I agree that love, gratitude and positive thinking are key. Miracles are all around us!

  3. Hooray! Your lifestyle definitely makes a super healthy body for you! Besides, you have the most positive attitudes to everybody and issues raised. Happy everyday! Donna

    1. Hi, Aiqin. It is wonderful to hear for you. Thank you for your kind words and good wishes. Please write when you have time and let me know how your year has gone.

  4. Phew, Donna! A second opinion is usually definitely worth it! Sorry you had to go through such a scare, very glad you are okay. Hug to both of you. xx

    1. Hugs right back to you, Helen! Richard and I are very relieved. Very valuable lessons were learned. Miss you!! Thanks so much for commenting.

  5. Donna, I am sitting here with tears rolling down my face….first with the shock of a possible terminal disease….then with joy that it all worked out in your favor๐Ÿ’• Positive attitude and a strong belief in a miracle is always a good way to move forward! To a long and healthy continued retirement…..enjoy your hike of the Camino again!

    1. Thank you so much, Georgia. Your reaction moved me deeply. The support of friends and family is incredible. I am very, very grateful for this!

  6. Donna thank you so much for sharing and reminding us all of what is most important in our lives. So very happy that you got good news and can continue to live a wonder-filled retirement fully aware that miracles do really happen.

    1. Hi, Sharon – Thank you so much for stopping by and giving your good wishes. I love when friends share here. It’s like an actual visit with those from far away. I truly cherish this! Please keep in touch.

  7. So glad that you are all right. These health scares are a sharp reminder of how precious our lives are. Thank you for sharing.

    1. Thanks, Catherine – I woke up this morning to a flood of comments, text messages and emails. The power of friendship is incredible. Thinking of you and your upcoming surgery. Sending good vibes your way.

  8. Dearest Friend.
    It’s been such a long time since we were in the same literal space but I think of you often and miss you always. I’m glad this was an opportunity for you – to ground, to plan, to be thankful. But I’ll be honest my heart was in my throat as I read. I’m more glad it was a scare only. Hugs from me to you.

    1. Hi, Andrea – I am incredibly grateful for our friendship. Even though we have not seen each other in person for years, that had not changed a thing. It is wonderful to hear from you. Your good wishes mean so much!

  9. I don’t have a comment adequate to your post, Donna. Thank you for sharing your experience. The way that you and Richard live your lives has always been inspiring. Now it is even more so.

    1. Hi, Karen – Thank you for mentioning Richard. The past few weeks were even harder on him than on me. He was truly amazing and gave me so much strength. We appreciate your kind words.

  10. The power of prayer, it’s amazing, isn’t it? I’m so happy to hear you got a clean bill of health, Donna, but saddened you had to go through such a stressful period. Enjoy your day! xo

  11. Wow ๐Ÿ˜ณ, I was just a little more than surprised. So glad you waited to write the post after the second opinion. Great news! (Getting up and down is harder for me than the downward dog!)

    1. Thanks, John – You raise a good point about post timing. If the news had gone the other way, I would have begun a second blog under a pseudonym. That would have allowed me to protect the people that I love, while still using my writing to help organize my thoughts. Funny about getting in and out of Downward Dog…that I can do, it’s just the rest of the pose that’s all too much!

  12. This was a freaking scary post. I’ve had to wait between a mammogram and the pursuing tests (ultrasound, MRI, biopsy) to find out that my cancer did not return. I remember how that felt. It sat on my shoulders and much as I tried, I colored everything I did. I had no reason to believe it would a death march but the anxiety was there. Over the years I have come to be more comfortable with death. I stopped doing things I don’t want to do and do more of things I like (hence my fascination with all things coffee and cats). I am so happy for you and even though I didn’t know any of this before, you made my weekend!
    Kate recently posted…Sassy cats โ€“ Whereโ€™s Waldo?My Profile

    1. Hi, Kate – Thank you for this very powerful comment. The ‘anxiety of waiting’ can colour our thoughts, no matter how much we try otherwise. I am so glad that you also received good health news. I enjoy reading your very witty posts, and love your ‘coffee and cats’ focus!

  13. I’m so glad that you were able to speed up the date of your scan – what a heavy thing to have weighing on you for two months without an answer. It’s such a relief that your scan results were clear and the two of you can continue to enjoy the wonderful life you’ve created for yourselves. Hugs to you both!
    Janis recently posted…Rockabilly Style Comes to Las VegasMy Profile

    1. Hi, Janis – You raise an important point about being able to speed up the date of our scan. Although my doctor had marked ‘urgent’ on our scan request, two months was the quickest appointment date that we could receive. My husband and I were able to circumvent this because we could afford to pay the (extremely high) fee. So many people simply cannot afford to do this. Although I am very grateful for our Canadian health care system, that inequity is incredibly unfair. I am not sure what the answer to this is, but there needs to be one.

      1. Thank you for sharing. Life is precious and sometimes it takes a health scare or some sort of tragedy to make us realize how precious it is. I am glad you had the means to pay for an earlier appointment. I think health care is a basic human right not a privilege. We are struggling with this in the United States. I wish you and your family the best.

        1. Hi, Denise – Thank you so much for commenting. I agree that health care and education should be basic human rights, and not just privileges for those that can afford to pay exorbitant fees. It is amazing how crystal clear our values can become when our feet are held to the fire!

  14. A very moving and gratifying ending, Donna. As others mentioned, you certainly kept us in suspense to the end! I can’t begin to wrap my head around the anxiety that you both were experiencing. How wonderful that in the end it was nothing more than a scare. Thanks for sharing this.

    I’m finding the factoid about the CAT scan wait to be a little jarring. Is that a “new normal”there, or has it been like that for some time ? What a fortunate set of circumstances that you were able to get a private one done.

    1. Hi, Marty –
      There you were in my spam folder again. Seriously, I have no idea how this happens.
      Thank you for your kind words and good wishes. As Richard and I have just returned to British Columbia’s health care, I’m not sure how long this Cat-Scan wait has existed here. That being said, Richard and I do (generally) agree with the Canadian health care system….and we were grateful to have a expedited (albeit expensive) option.
      I’ll check back into that spam folder thing!

  15. I’m so pleased you got the all clear Donna but what a stressful time for you and your husband. When things like this happen it really makes us think about our mortality. It really is all about attitude- you can choose to keep living to the max or you can give up way too soon. Thank you for the reminder that life is precious.

    1. Thanks, Sue – I greatly appreciate your kind and wise words. One of the first tasks that I attempted, upon receiving the ‘suspected diagnosis’ from my doctor, was my guest post for you on ‘happiness.’ It was a perfect initial activity for me. It helped me to focus on who I was, who I wanted to be, and to remind myself that nothing could change that…unless I allowed it to do so!

  16. Wow, Donna, what a roller coaster of emotions you were on. I am so happy you got a clean bill of health in the end. I guess something like that would make you rethink how you are living your life and decide how you want to live it going forward. It would be a real wake up call to anyone who went through that traumatic experience.
    Thanks for sharing your personal experience with us…it certainly has me looking at life differently as well.

    1. Hi, Susan – Thank you so much for commenting. Although Richard and I strove hard to remain grounded, that was often easier said than done. You are absolutely correct, experiences like that do make you rethink your life and focus you on how you would like to go forward.

  17. So happy that everything turned out for the best, Donna! Life is so unpredictable and each new day is an opportunity to savour each precious moment. Take care.

    1. Thanks, Marilyn – This is very well said. Each day IS an opportunity to savour precious moments. Often it is a matter of our perspective and how we frame things.

  18. Hi Donna,
    I am so happy that everything ended up being fine for you and your husband. I also think it is great that your doctor was so professional in making sure you got accurate and conclusive information. It is important to have that no matter what the news is to help you and those around you. The waiting time for the results of tests though really bugs me now that I have seen what other countries can do as far as releasing information regarding these tests are concerned. In Egypt the doctor was watching the results as they came in as they did an MRI on me. Results were given to me immediately. In Uzbekistan, I went for a scan on my neck to try to determine why I couldn’t raise my arms after I finished writing the IB school report (stress big time!). I went at 10 in the morning, waited in the reception area for about an hour, received the report and brought it back to my doctor. By 12:00 I had an appointment with him, and was set up for physio beginning the next day. if they can do this sort of turn around, then why can’t we? I am glad you went the private route to get answers much quicker than what would be the norm.

    Having said that, your entry started me thinking about what I would do if I was told only five more years. Thanks for sharing your experience so eloquently.

    1. Thanks, Fran –
      Like you, Richard and had gotten used to a very different health care system. Although we are grateful for the attempts at equity and affordabilty in the Canadian Health Care System, some individual pieces, like the year+ wait to get a family doctor, have left us stunned.
      One of the (many) lessons that Richard and I learned from this ordeal has been to be more proactive in advocating for our health. The idea to go the private scan route was not suggested by our doctor, it was something that Richard and I needed to initiate ourselves. However, once we made this request, our doctor was very supportive of our wishes.

  19. My goodness, I read that with tears in my eyes – but I am so happy at the ending. I often wonder how I would cope with bad news like that, for myself or (worse) for John. I like to think I would react as you did, or a friend of ours who has a brain tumour but continues to live his life cheerfully. You don’t have to wonder: you know you came through with flying colours.
    Anabel Marsh recently posted…Budapest: Margaret Island and ร“budaMy Profile

    1. Hi, Anabel – Thank you for your kind words. You are right about it being even worse to receive life-threatening news for a loved one/partner/soulmate. The hardest thing for me in going through this was watching the pain in Richard’s eyes. Luckily when I look there now I see only love, gratitude and tremendous relief!

  20. Hello Donna, Wow! That must have been one very difficult roller coaster ride for you. So glad for those follow-up CAT scan results for you and your family.

    While reading your post, thoughts from the book that I just finished earlier this week “When Breath Becomes Air” were front and center in my mind.

    Life is so precious.

    1. Hi, Scott – Thank you so much for stopping by, reading and commenting. Thank you also for recommending “When Breath Becomes Air”. I just had a quick look and it has some incredible reviews. I agree with your conclusion. Life is precious!

  21. So very, very pleased to hear of the outcome, Donna. I can’t imagine what it must have been like but, like me, you seem to be a person that has a fighting spirit within them. I’d have done exactly the same as you and enjoyed what life I had left. In fact, I enjoy each and every day as it comes. Life is short but has all the answers. We should do whatever we can to enjoy each and every moment of it.
    Hugh Roberts recently posted…Inside-Out #flashfictionMy Profile

    1. Hi, Hugh – Thanks for your kind words. I agree, being blessed with a fighting spirit is a great thing to have! I am off to read your flash fiction now!

  22. As I was reading this I could feel my chest constricting with anxiety on your behalf. Those 3 weeks must have felt like a lifetime.

    I’m so glad that you got the *miracle* you prayed for!! … and you have reaffirmed your blueprint for the life you want to live in the time ahead.

    The Camino! Nice ๐Ÿ™‚
    Joanne Sisco recently posted…Behind Closed DoorsMy Profile

    1. Thanks so much, Joanne. That’s the hard part. When you’re undergoing anxiety, your chest constricts. When you are undergoing anxiety about a suspected lung disease, you immediately experience the symptoms! Add to that the difficulty breathing normally when you are focusing on it, and it can totally mess with your mind! I greatly appreciate your kind words.

  23. Oh Donna! Chills ran down my back and my eyes filled with tears as I read this. How terrible for you and Richard to have had this preliminary diagnosis, and how wonderful to then find out that it was something benign.

    You are right that a diagnosis like the first one does cause a person to focus, with gratitude, on the sweetness of life. My Dad was diagnosed with two fairly advanced cancers in his mid seventies. He received excellent treatment in the Canadian health care system and lived five more years before succumbing to a third, unrelated cancer. I do believe that those last five years were among the happiest in his life. He was grateful for every additional day.

    That said, I am so relieved to hear about the outcome of your second test!

    Dr Sock recently posted…Anxiety AttackMy Profile

    1. Hi, Jude – Great minds think alike. I was just settling in to read your post, “Anxiety Attack”, and saw that I had a comment from you.
      Thank you for your kind words. I love your father’s attitude of being grateful for every single day!
      I look forward to seeing you on the island soon.

        1. Hi, Jude – I’m sending good ‘house selling’ vibes your way! I greatly look forward to you living near by. Your new home looks amazing!

  24. Wow! What a wake up call, but also what an affirmation that you were already doing exactly what you’d want to be doing if you only had 5 years left. Life is short and we don’t have any guarantees so we need to remind ourselves of what you learned on a regular basis. So glad your miracle happened and you have a long (and hopefully healthy) life still ahead of you xx
    Leanne | crestingthehill recently posted…Midlife Monday ~ What if I Die Alone With My Cat?My Profile

    1. Hi, Leanne – I just finished reading your post, What If I Die Alone With My Cat? There are many great synergies between our posts. Significant events in our life, both big and small, give us pause to wonder how to continue as our best possible selves. Thanks for sharing here. I greatly appreciate it.

    1. Hi, Barbara – I loved your post! I wholeheartedly agree with your conclusion. Living for five more years is completely different than dying in five. Now seems the perfect time to ensure that we are doing what we can, and not unnecessarily deferring things until “later.”

  25. Donna- You are such a gret writer who triger her readers feelings alive. I am so happy that everything turns out the best.

    I am so excited to read your pledge: “We wanted to live our lives as fully as possible. We wanted to remain active and adventurous for as long as we could. Truthfully, we wanted to be even more adventurous! “. That is exactly what we want to do! Continue to keep us updated with your endeavors and adventures.

    1. Hi, Suyi – Thank you so much for your kind words. When you and your husband are planning your upcoming adventures, please plan a trip to Vancouver Island. We would love to see you!

  26. Like others mentioned, my eyes filled with tears as the prognosis began to unfold. I’m thankful and happy to read you were able to get the scan sooner. Yes, your resilience and gratitude for the life you have should be an example to others to not get caught up in the what ifs. Past age 50, every day should be considered a small miracle because God does know the number of our days. I’m happy to hear that you are well. Thank that dreaded downward dog for its warning signs to get you to the doc!! Happy for you Donna and God bless you ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Hi, Terri – Thank you for these kind words. I love how you see gratitude in everything…even Downward Facing Dog! ๐Ÿ˜€ You are incredibly inspirational!

  27. Oh Donna! I’m just catching up on blogs and this stopped me in my tracks. I really feel for you and wish you well. I’m so pleased for you with this news. Take care. Xx

    1. Hi, Debbie – Thank you so much for your kind words. The personal connections made in the blogging community still completely amaze me. I never understood this before I began my blog. I am now a believer!

  28. I’m so glad you received good news in the end. But, I do think these kinds of things teach us exactly who and what we want for the days ahead, just as you said. Some say thinking of death makes them sad. I want to think of death as a friend, reminding me every day to keep living. Doesn’t mean I’m not afraid, just means I want to live before I die. I love how this experience brought even greater clarity for you. Thank you for sharing it!
    Angela Noel recently posted…Strength and Dignity: The Power of ChoiceMy Profile

    1. That is such an effective line, Angela. “Doesn’t mean Iโ€™m not afraid, just means I want to live before I die.” This experience has been a very powerful teacher for me. Comments like yours have added to my clarity and understanding. Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing here.

  29. Hi Donna,
    We are so glad everything is OK. You are such a positive person with so much life and vitality. We don’t need bad news like this in our lives, but they do give us the opportunity to take stock and look at our priorities. I survived a major car accident in my forties, life became a miracle I no longer took for granted.

    1. Hi, Brenda – Thank you for your kind and wise words. Life is a miracle. Definitely not to be taken for granted!

  30. Good news, but gracious, what a wait you had there. Of course, it brought you to a place of better health and balance, so there’s that which is good. The road forward will seem much lighter for you, I imagine.

    1. Hi, Ally – Yes, we are definitely feeling lighter. The experience was definitely a huge wake-up call for health and balance!

  31. Donna, I am so sorry you had to go through all of this … and thankful you were able to get better news quickly! Some of my cancer-surviving friends say they are thankful for what the experience taught them. You may look back on this experience as one that enriches the rest of your life. …but again, I am sorry.

    Since you have done so much reading on pulmonary fibrosis, I will share one thing. My mom was diagnosed with this disease shortly after my dad died – almost 25 years ago. She is 97. She doesn’t even use oxygen. She cut her own grass until she was 92. The sound of her lungs mimics pneumonia. That has probably caused a misdiagnosis a time or two.

    As with all diseases, there are various degrees of disease. We are fortunate.

    Praises that you have a clean bill of health. I look forward to reading about your continuing adventures.

    Thanks for sharing.

    1. Hi, Rebecca – Thank you so much for stopping by and sharing your mother’s story. When I was reading about this disease, I was purposely looking for positive stories of people like your mother who continued to live extended lives independently. Those stories were very hard to find. Sending warm wishes to your mom, you and your family.

  32. Hi Donna! I’m just checking in and reading this and am SO-O glad to hear that all is well. And I also appreciate how you handled the experience with such grace and peace. I think the fears of what “may be happening” are often more devastating to others than the actual reality. And as we are all adding years to our lives, the potential for that fear is always present. May the lesson in this stay with all of us in the days ahead. ~Kathy
    Kathy @ SMART Living 365.com recently posted…5 Choices Taught By Caroline Myss That Lead To Healing And Better HealthMy Profile

    1. Thanks, Kathy – There were so many valuable lessons in this experience. I wish for the grace never to lose hold of them!

  33. Wow, I too believe in the power of prayer!!! I’m so relieved to hear that you are not facing that dreaded condition . Life is a gift and your experience reinforces my resolve to keep positive and be greatful for every day I have. Talk to you soon. Bob

    1. Hi, Bob – Thank you so much for reading and commenting here. I greatly appreciate it. Richard and I look forward to seeing you soon!!

  34. What a scare, Donna! I’m so happy that you are fine!!! And, I’m so sorry I only now read your post and couldn’t be there a bit earlier with my support and understanding. I can just feel your relief when you received the clean bill of health from your doctor!

    The initial diagnosis and the waiting are the worst! We, unfortunately, have been in a few similar situations… First with Mark’s cancer, which we believed to be a “mistake” (but it was not) – and the uncertainty about everything was very tough. A year later, doctors found a tumor in my head, which is benign, but remains (I need scans and tests every year) and then, very recently, with a mammogram that didn’t come back clean. Supposedly benign as well – two cysts… Dealing with it now. All these scares are no fun, for sure. One thing I have learned over time, is to see everything in perspective and, unfortunately, prepare myself for “the worst” (hard to do , regardless).

    I have actually thought about your question above, but there is a difference between “believing” you only have five years to live and actually being told by professionals that this is the case! While I’d like to believe I’d be able to make the most of those last five years, knowing that I would be terminally ill would take away all the joy I could ever feel from traveling and doing what I want for five years! So, I don’t think that way and continue to live life the way we both want, as we have been able to do for over a decade. No regrets in life, that’s what it is all about in my opinion. ๐Ÿ™‚
    Liesbet recently posted…Long Weekend Away in Friesland, the NetherlandsMy Profile

    1. HI, Liesbet – I am so sorry to hear about the difficulties that you and Mark have gone through. You are right about the difference between ‘believing something’ and ’emphatically being told something.’ In my case, our doctor (who is great btw) did appear to believe that the ‘suspected diagnosis’ was correct….even when I rationalized that I did not have any of the ‘typical symptoms.’ It was a great lesson for all…one that I plan never to forget!

    1. Hi, L. Marie – Thank you so much for visiting my site here. I greatly appreciate it. And than you for your comment. Miracles happen daily. Belief, gratitude, and kindness are the keys.

  35. I was reading your last post that had a link to this one. Had to read it. My first reaction was , well, you know what it was. I know all about Pulmonary Fibrosis. Lost my mother to it at 75. My sister, now 63 has it. She is living her life as though it’s not there, fully and with zest. I was diagnosed with it in 2012. And like you, I went home and prayed and meditated. The next x-ray could find no trace of it. I choose to remain positive and healthy. A life threatening illness helps us put our priorities in order. I hope you continue with your travel plans and sharing them with us. I’ll be checking in again. Hugs, Marlene

    1. Hi, Marlene – This is such a powerful comment. I have to admit, it startled me. I am so sorry to hear about your mother. I greatly admire your sister for living her life fully and with zest. Like you, I believe in the power of prayer. Miracles do happen every day. I agree that the threat of life-altering illnesses helps us to immediately refocus on what is important. Thank you so much for stopping by. I am about to begin a Sunday Series of Retirement/Lifestyle bloggers. After that, expect this site to contain numerous tales and photos of my husband’s and my Camino adventure! I look forward to ‘seeing’ you again.

  36. I finally got to your post here. I read each word in breathlessness. I have problems with down dog, too. And with some yoga poses, (the same one, for years) my body reacts by coughing and losing breath. So hey, maybe I have the same thing you do. And what WOULD I do, what would each of us do, with only 5 years left? Well, my guy and I talked about this over drinks at our favorite watering hole, and truth is, we think we’d do exactly what we’re doing. We love our live together -as do you and Richard. We’re both still working (he full time, me in my writing and publishing) and we love what we do. We travel to see grandchildren as much as possible. We enjoy friends, we take long hikes together, and celebrate our children. What else IS there that counts?
    I celebrate the end result of your CAT scan. And I celebrate how you shared your story with us, and made us all look to our present and our future, and see what counts. xo

    1. Hi, Pam – I wholeheartedly agree that loving what we do, and opening our eyes to the wonders all around us, are the keys. I was inspired to hear that you also struggle with downward-facing dog. I am glad to know that it is not just me! Thank you for stopping by to comment. I appreciate it greatly.

  37. Oh wow, what an amazing life experience. I often find it’s this kind of shock that opens doors to new ways of being, and a new appreciation of life. So glad for you that you’ve been given a clean bill of health.

    1. Hi, Alison – Thank you so much for stopping by. I also believe that experiences like this open new doors of realization for us. We just need to hold fast to the lessons taught! I love your writing and adventures and am excited to follow further.

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