As I count down and look back on the year I guess the thing that comes to the foremost inner thoughts in my mind is that I am just happy that I’m still among the living. It seems we have lost so many to this year that will be known as 2012. It will be known as a year when school children lost their lives to a terrible shooting, when a president who was not so popular but the known went back into office and when we watched a president cry on television. It will be known as a year of last as in there will not be in my lifetime again a date such as 12/12/12. This year will be known for so many things by so many. I lost an uncle. I have cousins who’ve lost their husbands, schoolmates who blessed us with their presence this time last year that we shall never enjoy their company in this life again, and children that lost their parents and parents that lost their children. It was a year when a beautiful voice, Whitney Houston, went silent and the New Year Count down king, Dick Clark, took his final count. No one has to wonder who shot JR, but one has to wonder at the great talents laid to rest in Andy Griffith, Sherman Hemsley, Richard Dawson, Donna Summers, Kitty Wells and of course Andy Williams. It was a year the world was thought to end just because some Mayan got tired of making a calendar that went well beyond his life expectancy. It’s been a year when I’ve seen the Christmas spirit very much so alive in the giving nature and in the decorations that are all around us. All years have great meaning to them for we have lived them. We have loved in them and cried in them. We have welcomed new life and laid life to rest. We have made new friends and lost friends to stupid ignorance. I have faced my troubles in 2012, but I have lived through them to this point. I know there is still a week left so no one’s guaranteed a new year. Of all the things in this year I know though I have been assured over and over that I have been blessed by good friends like Joe, Vincent, Karen, Jackie, Ida and Chris who’ve stood the test of time over and over. I have renewed friendships from days gone by. I have welcomed new friends with open arms like Melissa, Bean, Joe L, Dalia and Stephanie. I have been reminded what a wonderful brother I have in Ritchie and how lucky I am to have had two loving parents such as my mom and dad. My mom and dad celebrated fifty years of marriage in this year of 2012. There are so many things to be grateful for even within the sorrows that befell us. There were babies born, such as the one to my cousin Anna, Ms. Holly. There is another baby that may or may not bless us with his presence before 2013 for my cousin Matt and his wife Tracy. Life is definitely a balancing act of good and bad and we must somehow learn to live in the middle for our own sanity. It would be easy I think at this time of year to get depressed and fall into a black cloud of pity and pain. It’s a season where we miss so many people that have gone on. I know I’ve been a little melancholy myself as my friend Rob was here visiting this time last year and I feel him everywhere around me. What I would want is for each of you to hold onto each other. Find a way to make this the best Christmas you can with the best memories you can because who knows if you will get the chance again next year. 2012 epic in its own right.
Thursday, December 6, 2012
So I thought I would take a moment and do an update on my health and where I’m at and what I’m thinking. It’s easy I think to come to an opinion on what you would do with a certain medical condition if you’ve never been faced with it. I mean I know I was pretty adamant about what I thought I would do when faced with certain choices until today when I actually was. It’s not that I plan on having a baby because I’m not really sure that would be wise at my age. It’s just that right now it’s my choice and I’m not sure how I feel about the choice being so completely taken away from me. I had a biopsy done last week of my cervix. Nothing life threatening for the moment there but they don’t want to take the chance of it turning into something life threatening so the doctor is recommending that I have a hysterectomy. I have mild dysplasia going on and some benign places on my cervix. I asked what probably seemed like a million questions to the doctor. I need to be sure I have all the facts before I decide. So my decision is I’d like to try the L. E. E. P. procedure one more time before I go to such a radical choice as having the hysterectomy. This procedure takes a blade made of electricity and cuts out all the bad spots. Then in six months you repeat the test and see if there are any new places. The problem is though that the last one I had done they took so much of my cervix they are not sure they can go with this option for me so I have to go in Monday and have an ultrasound done to see for certain. If it can be done it’s been scheduled for the 17Th of December. So we’ll see. Work has been great about working with me where they can. I’m hoping they can do the L. E. E. P. again but if they can’t then I will have to decide how long to wait and if I can afford to wait to have they hysterectomy and then I also have to decide on what course of hormone therapy to have after it. It’s stressful so it really wasn’t a surprise between that and other life stress and work stress that the doctors also put me on medicines to help with stress levels. So in a nut shell this is pretty much where I’m at. Doctor appointments are killing me. The cure is worse than the disease. Whatever line you want to use after over a year of dealing with this I sometimes simply want to scream!
Monday, November 12, 2012
Sunday, September 16, 2012
So I'm back in diet mode and trying to get myself healthy again. I know when I found out about my cervical cancer last fall I slacked off quiet a bit. I pulled out some comfort foods and although I tried to still exercise as I could and watch a lot of my foods, I fell short by a long shot. Now that I'm recovering and getting healthy again I am loving it. I'm all ready seeing the inches go away and feeling better as I eat healthier. I'm not saying it's easy because it's not. Just like any addiction food is something I have to watch. I have to tell myself in the store when going through certain isles that if I buy it I will eat it and if I eat it I will feel bad emotionally and physically. Isn't it odd that foods that taste so good often make us feel lousy? I've learned to stock better foods in my house for me. Some of the foods you use to find in my house I no longer stock are cookies, ice cream, frozen burritos, cake icing and chocolate milk. Oh don't worry about me. I still indulge now and then and I still stock wine in the fridge. A glass here and there is relaxing. What might you ask are the foods I've learned to stock to help me feel better about me and help me feel satisfied hunger wise and still lose weight? OK. I'll share. If you're at my house a few of the items you might find include: low sodium V8 juice, cashews, bananas, apples, peanut butter (oh yeah and I do get the peanut butter and jelly sometimes), cheese, pickles, egg rolls, eggs, , soups, bread (although I rarely eat it toast will do in a pinch if you're hungry), raisin bread, cereals, soy milk, Pringles (yeah I know they are not diet, but I don't eat em much), Dannon Light Fit Greek Yogurt and Jimmy Deans Turkey Griddle French Toast breakfast sandwiches. I don't go out to eat very often, but when I do I eat what I want. I think one of the major thing people do wrong when trying to get healthy and diet is they deprive themselves, which sets them up for failure at long term success and I want long term success. It's hard not to turn to comfort foods, but like I said with any addiction you just take it one day at a time and put one foot in front of the other. It's been a rough couple of years with a lot of loss from Jeff, to Robb, to old friends, and family. It's also been a couple of years of growing and succeeding on so many levels. My attitude towards life and people has improved and my days are spent mostly happy and mostly feeling well. I had a spell yesterday where I didn't feel great, but I pulled through it and ended the day on a positive with friends sitting around a fire listening to stories and laughing. So tell me what is in your fridge and how do the foods you eat make you feel?
Tuesday, August 28, 2012
Wednesday, July 11, 2012
Sunday, June 17, 2012
Sunday, June 10, 2012
Saturday, April 21, 2012
I hear whispers in the morning when I wake. Quiet echo’s of dreams, the prior day events gone past and fears. Always every morning a replay of the day before and a thought that perhaps today will repeat or change dramatically. I often wonder how many people wake like this. At the close of each night I try to wipe everything from my thoughts. I try to think of each new day as a new slate and a new beginning. I spoke recently with a friend that said he never sleeps more than four hours a night and then it’s broken sleep. He said his events of the day and things that he could get or should get done yet keeps playing through his mind and no matter how hard he tries he can’t get to sleep. I recommended to him that he perhaps should try meditation or some tea before bed and explained to him that he needs to remind himself that there is nothing that can be done about any of these things in the middle of the night. I feel for him because the body does really need it’s rest to function properly. I don’t think I’m reaching to say all my friends probably think my mind is warped. I say some of the most off the wall things and something someone says can have the most strange effect on where it sends my mind. I’m always forever more hearing songs from something someone will say. An example of this is a girl at work said something the other day about her boy and the old song “Let’s Hear It for the Boy” started playing through my head. Just like that with one little word a whole song and me trying to get it out were stuck up there. I also often wonder who is feeling exactly the same way I am at any given moment or who has thought the same thoughts or felt the same way. Did you ever wonder when you were a kid if you were the only person on the planet that was human? Think Aliens had abducted you and were living all around you because you felt so different from everyone else? I’ve never quiet felt like I belonged much of anywhere which is why I’m glad for my multi-colored, multi-talented and much loving set of friends fell into my life. If we’re going to play one of these things isn’t like the others I want to play to win. Just kidding but they do help me with their diversity I feel to grow as a human being. They help me to see that differences are not a threat but a good thing. I was listening to the Pat Miller Program the other day and he said he thought Dick Clark should have stopped being on television and stepped aside after his stroke because it made him feel uncomfortable. Not because he disrespected Dick Clark. I have no doubt from the way he spoke he had great respect for the man, but because he remembered him the way he was. I think Dick Clark did exactly what he should have. I tried to call the show but held for too long and gave up. By doing what he did Dick Clark showed the world that he wasn’t going to let life pass him by handicapped or not. He wasn’t going to sit on that rocker and just give into life. He wasn’t going to let people see him whipped by a circumstance he had little control over. He wasn’t going to hide in shame or cower in the corner or just give up. I think he did step aside for the most part, but no Pat I think he did as he should. Perhaps our kids won’t remember, unless we help them, the Dick Clark we knew when we were young but what they will have seen is a man who didn’t shy away from the camera because he made people feel uncomfortable. He didn’t let life beat him and he didn’t let people who might mock him stop him. So I’ve felt the odd one in the crowd before for many reasons and I wanted to hide. He gave strength in his way of handling it to many and he will be missed. Good night Dick Clark until you count us down again.
Monday, April 16, 2012
Step by step. Baby steps. Walking through it all in my mind. Last week the nurse practitioner told me if it takes more than 48 hours for the test results to come back the results are probably not good. She looked at me and said I really don't know why. I looked at her and said maybe they want to recheck them before they tell someone their life is f***. I called this morning. It had been a week today. They acted almost annoyed that I was calling again. Said they had me on their planner to call just as soon as the results came in. So what were the results. Same as they were before I ever got my cervix frozen in the first place. Still bad old cells that really need to get the heck out of my body to ensure my long life. So what is next is a procedure called "LEEP" or Loop electrical excision procedure. It basically means they are going to take a knife sharp looped tool and go in with a special scope find the cancerous or bad cells and use the tool to cut them out. They will go well below the places to ensure they get all of it. This all takes place with a local anesthetic and it all takes place in the doctors office not a hospital. I will go in and have the procedure and an hour later I'll be at my desk at work. Some bleeding and probable lots of pain. In and out. Just like that and I'm just suppose to take it with a grain of salt. Then more wait time, retest an go from there. In and out just like that. It's nerve racking at best, and today I found myself half wishing no one knew cause then I could bury my head and pretend it isn't happening. That isn't me though. I tell my stories, what happens to me and what I go through for several reasons. One to get it out so it doesn't drive me insane and two to help others who may go through this. I have had an enormous amount of support and women who have had the same thing happen to them and they give me encouragement. It's scary being a female and going to the gynecologists office. You just never know what they are going to say and each time I go I am more nervous than the last these days because all I want to do is have it all done and it just keeps going and going and going. I think my doctor can afford that new BMW now since I keep going in. Well that was just a quick update. I'll keep chugging along and I appreciate every one's support. Right now though I just want to get the next step done and go from there and forget it as much as possible. We'll see what happens. It's making me feel like a high school science experiment though. You know lets see what happens if we do this?
Sunday, April 15, 2012
For the last several months it seems all I have gotten when I go to places is tacky at best customer service. I think most of these companies have forgotten that the customers experience will decide whether they return or continue to do business with them or not. I know most of these companies have also forgotten that your customers experience good or bad comes from how the employee feels about their job. An example of poor service? Well I have several. I think other than the occasional shake I'll go get I've given up on the Wendy's in Fort Wayne. They are never really very friendly. They also assume things like that I would want a spoon rather than a straw with my shake. Yep. Last 4 times and they looked at me like I had three heads when I asked for a straw. To me it's like DUH Shake here. Then you almost have to beg them for napkins. I guess they are figuring that is what your sleeve is for. Now I say Fort Wayne because I have been to the Wendy's in Indy several times and it's like evasion of the body snatchers, they are friendly, polite, give you a spoon and a straw and OMG napkins! Your service in most of these places is not much better. I really think they need to think about their service before they act and whether that customer will ever return. I do most of my shopping at Meijer. Not because they have lower prices but because they are more helpful and friendlier than their competitor. I shop Target because their people are ALWAYS friendly to me no matter what and I know their prices are not the lowest. No matter how good a product is the service is what sells it in the end. I always use to tell a friend of mine that liked Ford's that I wouldn't have one. He said why they are gorgeous cars. I was like yeah but I like my car running. If you have a Ford and it works good my appologies but I have had nothing but trouble from them and don't know anyone else who's had good luck including this guy whose vehicle was in the shop (brand new vehicle) every time he looked around. I don't care if it's comfortable and gorgeous. The service on it sucks if it's constantly broken even if friendly people are saying sorry it's down again. It's just a fact in my life. One exception here is Ford Trucks now those suckers run and they run very well. Cars not so much. So as of late I've been watching my own avoidance of places from their customer service and getting discouraged because I just assumed there was no where left where you got good service. This past week I found a service center and employee that cared. I went to Midas on North Coliseum out by Kmart. I went in there at 5pm on Friday to have them check my brakes which were rubbing or pulsating. I expected hundred of dollars of work and prepared for the worst. Scott the guy behind the counter apologized and said they could check them but if they needed work it would have to be on another day since they close at six. His guy came out and said there is nothing wrong with them. Specs are fine. I said I know there's something wrong with them. Scott then went for a drive with me in my car so he could figure out what I was talking about. He said he'd learned the customer knew their car and if they said something was wrong it was. so it didn't take him long to agree with me. They just need reconditioned and cleaned. Old man winter had rust in there and it was making it hard for things to maneuver. So Saturday morning he fit me in, knew I had to be to work at 10:30 and promised to get it done in time. He gave me the remote to the television to flip through the channels and kept me updated on my car. While I was in there a homeless man came in and needed money. He gave the guy a couple of bucks. I was awed. Great, honest and friendly service and my work was completed just as promised on schedule. If this guy could bottle up what he has going for him and his shop and sell it to companies the economy would be booming and business would be back to giving good customer service. I don't wow easy. So for me this was a great experience. It was also a pleasant surprise to have great customer service and kindness all in one spot. Made for a nice start of a Saturday morning.
Tuesday, April 10, 2012
I'm not expert but I'd be willing to bet that stress is a number one killer of people. It can do so much damage in such a short amount of time. I know I've had one killer headache since yesterday afternoon. I've waited four months for my test to see if my cervical cancer is gone. I'm hoping it is. I've found though that it is very common among women and I've met a couple that my treatment worked for and a couple it didn't. The ones it didn't had their cervix removed and were fine then. I've heard no horror stories of women dying although I'm sure there are a few who have. I also know there are worse things in life happening to people all the time. I try to keep that in perspective although again I'll tell you that what affects your life and soul no matter how small to someone else is huge in your own world. It didn't help that the woman told me that test results usually take 24 hours to come back if normal and 48 if not and no call today. I'm sure I'm on a list to call somewhere and all will be fine though. STRESS HAS BEEN ADDED. It is what it is though. Work has been less stressful, my personal life has been a little stressed. Over all though I'm good though. I'm looking forward to a great summer. I started walking again and I've been watching my diet. They started me on a thyroid medicine to hopefully help and I'm looking forward to seeing friends at the Elmhurst gathering on the 14th. I miss Rob. I remember him saying when I found out I had cervical cancer cells that we would get through this, he'd be here for me. I'm sure he meant it. I just wish he were here. I'm sure on some level in spirit he is. Hopefully the doctors will call tomorrow and I can move on with the next chapter. I know I'm strong though and with everything that happens in my life like this I grow stronger. I have great friends and family. I'm luckier than most. Well that is it on the update front for now. For now it's deep breath in and deep breath out and walk knowing God is with me either way.
Friday, March 16, 2012
So made it through another health issue. Seems like I've had more than my fair share lately, but I do realise there are others that have had it much more worse than myself. Our own issues are serious for us though and in my own I struggle not to worry myself sick and to just face each item as it comes along. So much fun comes with age. As my grandmother Lula use to say life is only good as long as one's health allows them to enjoy it. I felt human today. I know that may sound odd but I actually had a day where most of the day I felt really good. My last scare turned out to be a thin uterine lining. Mine was a bit thin. The fix was to give me some estrogen patches and raise my estrogen levels which trust me has me having hot flashes but it's not all bad. Now I'm just waiting for the next test. No cancer in my Uterus, but did the freezing of my Cervix kill the cancer cells there? I go in on April 9th for that test which means I swill probably know the week after that. I have a new diet they have me following and I'm having to try to cut out a lot of carbohydrates, breads, caffeine. They want me to do three days on, two off four on, two off three on two off and so on. Lots of fruits and veggies in this new diet. I like fruits and veggies though and summer is coming so walking is going to be my thing again this year. Be ready to see lots of pictures and posts on my walking journey. I can finally go back to the gym again too so I hope to be toning and getting back in better shape. As with each summer I want to make as many happy memories as I can with my friends and family. I love being outside so it's going to be a great one I think. Who doesn't love 78 and higher temps in March? I am loving it myself. Well this is a short to the point and sweet update, but I wanted to put one out here. Enjoy the weekend, it's going to be a great one I'm certain.
Friday, March 2, 2012
So as you all may or may not remember I had my cervix frozen in November two days before Thanksgiving. I don't actually go back and get the test retaken for that until April 9th to see if it killed the cancer or not, but it has definately had me somewhat nervous. I have had to go to my gyno again though. I started my cycle on January 24th and it just never went away. It's still here. Yeah. Fun eah? So I went to the doctors last Wednesday after giving up that it was going to go away on it's own. What do they tell me? Basically it's a crap shoot and they don't know why it's happening. It's not menepause. Not enough symptoms and I know yeah I'm getting there in age, but that just isn't it. They drew 8 tubes of blood that they are going to test my blood count, test for anemia, check my thyroid and I forget what else. I go next Wednesday to have an Ultra sound done on my Uterus next Wednesday and to get my test results from my blood work. What do they say could be the problem? Well they say it could be an under active thyroid, or my uterus lining may have thinned from birth control pills or yeah they said it, it could be uteran cancer. As usual though they assured me that probably isn't the case and even if it is we can just take the plumbing out. Somehow that isn't real reassuring to me. I think Doctors and Nurses and Nurse practioners all take a course in how to freak you out. Am I right? I know I have lots of family out here on Facebook that are medical. Is it a lets freak you out so you'll be prepared for he worst and if not April fools? I feel ok for the most part except for the constant bloating, cramps, back ache and headaches and lack of energy... Yeah I know but you either have to laugh or cry. I just hope next week we get some resolution to this. It's been going on too long and in the end maybe it's just stress. Good Lord knows I've had enough of that in the last four months or so. My cousin lost her husband today. My heart breaks for her so I know my worries are small and it could be worse, but I would appreciate prayers. Never hurts to have others speaking to the Man up stairs on your behalf. God Bless everyone. Have a great weekend.
Sunday, February 12, 2012
Friday, January 6, 2012
Life can change on a dime. It’s funny how a year can affect you so much more than any other year. Strange how a man can come into your life in such a whirl wind and leave in an even bigger one. Rob Hogg had definitely done that in my life. A chance he had said. I’m glad I took a chance and requested to be your friend. To tell you the truth I barely remember Rob from high school. He was two grades behind me and I didn’t particularly hold any nostalgia for the high school years. It wasn’t a happy time of my life. My grandmothers both passed away and I had my own demons I was fighting with an eating disorder. Teenagers often have eating issues. I was bone thin by the end of high school and still pretty much unhappy. I had an incorrect vision of what life should be. I say incorrect because it’s never really wrong. I mean what I expected was setup through unreal expectations that demons and evil didn’t exists and that one can find someone and live happily ever after. Rob became a very dear friend. He would yahoo message with me when he would get up and all through the evening till I went to bed. He would send me text messages and he would call nightly just to see how my day was. I told him when he asked if we could be more than friends I wasn’t sure. We live too far apart and at the time all I am feeling is friendship, but that I was willing to give it a try and get to know him. I did get to know him too and I loved him. He had become one of my best friends and always offered comfort and support. Could we have become more someday? I will never know. He and I spent hours playing Yahoo Spades and Euchre or listening to television shows together and laughing. I went out to see him back in the fall and he showed me Houston through his eyes. He also showed me Galveston. I think then I was charmed by him almost as much as he was by me. He was a big kid in a grown mans body. I had told him how much I love Road Runner, Bugs bunny, Tweety and all the old cartoons so he had made sure to buy some of those for me to watch. He took me to the Houston Zoo and insisted we see everything and that I have a souvenir to take back with me. He showed me the malls and the shopping and took me to get a view of the waters and coastline. He showed me where he worked and where all the good eating places were and he remembered everything about anything I had talked to him about food. He made sure we went for Chinese and sushi. All the time I was there he never pressured me to be more than a friend. He talked to me about Carrie the woman he’d loved and lost in 2006. He introduced me to his three cats that he loved more than life. Scotty was a long haired grey tabby who pretty much was love me or leave me type of fellow. There was BC who had a scared ear that turned back on the corner but really wanted nothing to do with anyone except Rob. BC was really named Butter cup, but had been named that before they figured out he was a boy so Rob respectfully called him BC. Then there was Rupert. Rupert was half the age of the other two, but twice their size and was a domestic short hair black and white. I loved that cat. He had so much personality. I told Rob I would have taken him in a heartbeat. He told me how Rupert was Carriers Cat. Carrie had wanted one of her own and Rob being the big teddy bear that he was couldn’t deny her. Sadly Carrie died while Rupert was still a kitten. He told me of how hard it had been going to work that night and kissing Carrie and telling her he’d see her in the morning, only to come home and find her sitting in the same place cold as ice. His living room didn’t looked like he’d moved a thing or used it at all since she had left him. During that time he told me all about his family. His estranged mother although he wished she were in his life and he loved her he wouldn’t force her to be where she didn’t want to be. He told me of the dad he wished would be proud of him, but that he also loved. He mostly told me of his brother and his brothers family. He so wanted what his brother had. What he saw when he looked at them was love and family the way he thought it should be. His brother and his brothers wife’s relationship and even their kids which Rob loved each and everyone with all his heart. He knew it wasn't perfect because no family or relationship is, but of all things I would never doubt it’s that Rob would have given his life and all he owned for his brother and his brothers family. I loved my couple of days out in Houston with Rob. He was getting healthy or appeared to be and seemed to do well. He looked good and his skin was warm the way it should be to the touch. He had taken a bad spell just a month before I was out there and had spent a week in the hospital but he seemed to be getting past that. He was also so looking forward to seeing the family over the holidays. He was coming for 9 days from the 21st of December to the 1st of January and he wanted to experience all of his family he could while he was in Fort Wayne. He sounded happy and I was happy for him. Rob ran into some bad luck before coming to Fort Wayne for the holidays. His place was robbed and he missed several days of work. Along with this he went to get his license renewed and couldn’t until he got glasses which cut into his funds for his travels. He started stressing and talked to me about it. His plans were all made and there was no way of getting refunds for the trip since it was too late, but he didn’t want to anyway because he needed to see his family. It was what had kept him going for months. I assured him I would feed him while he was here and help in any way I could. Work also stressed him out as the “dragon lady” at his job had it out for him and started making a big deal about his missing work and paper work all of which wasn’t his fault. I mean who plans to get robbed? I assured him though that it would all work out and talked him into trying to enjoy his trip and not stress so much. When he arrived at my house in Fort Wayne he looked very pale and tired to me. He said it was from all the work and stress he had been under. I told him he needed to relax. He smiled and said he would try and take my advice and not worry. He and I set about getting the week all planned. Of the things we had lined out he had a day with his dad and his dads wife, a family dinner with my family and with his brother and her wife, a game day that he couldn’t wait for (tradition), a night with old friends at a friends bar and grille and a New Years party with me at my friend Joe’s house to ring in the new year. Everything else we would do on a whim or as it came. While he was here we had a great time. We went to the mall and a book store. We saw a movie and watched television. I didn’t know people were still mining for gold, but I guess I do now. I made him my infamous Pizza Casserole which he ate on three different nights while he was here. (I did offer to make him other stuff, it’s what he wanted) I made him cookies and cooked a roast. All the while him watching or offering to help and talking about his life or asking questions about mine. I learned a lot, but what I learned more than anything is that although Rob’s life had dealt him a lot of tough blows, he had never once allowed them to beat him down. He was working on a degree online to accompany the one he all ready had. He had plans and dreams and hopes. He talked about how he would love to work on a cruise ship some day and told me he was going to hold me to my promise that I would go on a cruise with him next year if he could manage to get us on one. He would often take my hand or touch my cheek with the back of his hand. This time his skin wasn’t warm. Most often his skin was cold and moist. He sweated a lot and he looked so tired and frail to me. I worried about him. I told him I did but he would have none of it. He just kept telling me he was fine. He talked more about funds. The trip would hit him hard financially but he would bounce back he said. He laughed and said one never knew if it would be their last so they had to take the opportunity to see family when they could. He wanted to come back in June, but didn’t know if he would be able to make it or not. Rob had wanted to go see the lights at the zoo, but somehow we never made it down there. I told him next year, now he won’t be with us next year to see them. You see life can change on a dime. Wednesday, January 4Th I had my last conversation with Rob. He text me as he always did and asked if I was home yet from work, then he called me. We talked for about 45 minutes. He was stressing out really bad. Work had sent him to a new site and he wasn’t sure if his ¾ of a tank of gas would last him until the 17Th because it was a lot farther away. His Internet wasn’t connected yet and he needed to get school work done and he had an argument with his dad. He was wound tight I could tell. I talked and talked to him though and told him that it will all work out. He was laughing when we hung up and said I was right, he knew I was that it would all work.out. He told me he was going to take a nap. He had to be to work at 10, which is 11 my time so he had a little time. He told me “I’ll call you tomorrow baby and let you know how it went. Kisses n hugs.” As I went to bed that night as always I included him in my prayers when I went to bed. The Lord probably gets tired listening because I always include everyone I think needs it and all those I love. It takes a little time but I say them nightly. It’s hard not to be angry on some level because I asked the Lord to watch over him. I guess I didn’t include a “don’t” let him die in that statement, but I thought it was self explanatory. The Lord has his own reasoning for taking Rob from us though it may be hard for us all to understand. Perhaps he knew Rob’s journey had been hard and he needed rest. Perhaps he knew Rob really needed to be with Carrie again. I’m not really sure what the reason. I just know when I was awakened by the phone ringing at 1:45A.M. on Thursday morning I wasn’t prepared for what the call entailed. It was Rob’s number. I almost didn’t answer. I thought I would just call him back in the morning but then I thought he knows I’m asleep so why is he calling. A million things went through my mind. He might be in the hospital again or maybe he was fired or in an accident, so I answered the phone. The woman on the other end of the line said “Hi, this is Candace and I have Rob’s cell phone. I’m his boss.” She kind of stopped there. I asked her why she had Rob’s phone. She goes who are you in relation to Rob. I thought it a prank at this point. I wasn’t sure what to think. I said I’m a friend he came to see over the holidays along with his dad and brother and again I asked why she had Rob’s cell phone. She goes well I hate to tell you this but Rob collapsed at work tonight and was taken to (she named some hospital off). I sighed a little because I thought taken to the hospital OK. Then she says I’m so sorry to tell you that they are saying he’s clinically dead. I think my own heart stopped for a moment at that point. I remember saying “What?” I remember asking her if she was sure and she said well I’m on my way to the hospital now to confirm it. Little did I know this was the Bi*** that had given Rob so much grief or our conversation might have gone so much worse that it did. She then asked me about his family and I told her I would call Rob’s brother and have him call her. It took me several tries to get his brother to answer, but he was just as shocked as I was when he answered the phone. About an hour after that I called Candace back. I told her someone would have to take care of Rob’s cats that they would need fed and she assured me she would take care of it. I very shakily through my tears asked her if she had confirmed Rob was dead and she said sadly yes he was and that she was so sorry for my loss and that if I needed anything to let her know. People always say that and although it’s kind what could one possibly need? Comfort I suppose. I suppose you could need someone to listen maybe too. I had family and friends for that though. I let a few of Rob’s friends I knew were awake know by calling or texting. I put a message out on Face book. I was numb. I was in a state of shock and disbelieve. He couldn’t be dead. He had just been here and he promised to call me tomorrow. He also bet me on every single game IU had this season. So far I had only lost once. He was suppose to come back to see me again. He couldn’t be gone. Suddenly he was everywhere in my house. I could see him sitting in the chair or helping himself to a water out of my refrigerator. I could see him at the sink drying dishes although I told him to sit down and relax. I could hear his words of encouragement that my test would come back OK in April and if they didn’t he was here for me. I was confused and lost at that moment. Rob was good for me and my ego you could say. He continually told me how beautiful I was and how any man who could not see my inner and outer beauty was an idiot. I’d tell him I need to lose weight and he’d say “you’re perfect just the way you are baby.” He was always there to make me smile no matter how bad my day was and no matter how I might worry about him he assured me he was more concerned for me. It isn’t fair to me. You see life can turn on a dime. He should still be here. He should be happy and smiling and healthy. He had a heart of gold and he will be missed so much by so many. I’m still having trouble adjusting to the idea of him never calling me again. Life can turn on a dime so don’t take one minute for granted. Rest in Peace Rob and know you will never be forgotten. I thank God I got to know you as well as I did. I don’t forget those who touch my heart even briefly. You will be thought of daily and held in my heart where you belong.