Thursday, July 2, 2009

Hellos and Goodbyes

Tomorrow is the one year anniversary of my sister's death from colon cancer. Her first biopsy showed it to be a very ferocious and persistent type of cancer and it lived up to it's reputation, she had 6 surgeries during 6 years. At the end they could not find another tumor but it was clear that she was dwindling for no other reason than that her body was spent. The jig was up.

Her life with cancer started roughly the same time as my life with program. My alcoholic, my son and I went out to see them just before she got diagnosed. Once we were back home, the truth became known.

I encouraged her to try a cancer support group. Even before I ever went to my first 12 step group I knew the value of sharing with others. Not surprisingly, she could not see the value in it. Like others, our family isolates, feels terminally unique, does not believe that another person could offer us anything of value. It's hard not to judge them for that arrogance, but then I would see those other fingers on my hand pointing back at me, wouldn't I?

So, I'm thinking of her today. She was a blessing to me. And I'm thinking of someone at work who shared with me this morning that he is facing a serious, disfiguring cancer diagnosis. Please don't smoke, people.

What's good about today is gratitude for those I've known and the gifts I've received.


  1. Carol I am thinking of you today.

  2. Oh my, Carol, your post touched me. Condolences on the one-year anniversary of what has got to be some awful memories--and some good ones as well.

    I am glad that God allowed you to know the value of sharing with others. And I am glad God brought you to the wonderful program of Alanon.

    You are a fine example--for alcoholics, and non-alcoholics--of how to live life on life's terms. I offer prayers for your son.

    Peace to you, and also to your co-worker who is facng cancer therapies.

    Blessings! It is good for me to know you.

  3. We have all received many gifts. I am thankful for being able to now recognize those gifts before it is too late. That was not always the case.

  4. Amen!

    Your post brings to mind people I've lost and those currently battling with cancer.

    I am so grateful to God that l7 years ago this month I finally quit smoking. It wasn't easy. I had tried many times and failed, but just kept trying and finally succeeded.

    Today I know not to take the first puff.

    God bless you on this day of remembering your sister,
    Prayer Girl

  5. What a sweet and thoughtful tribute. And that "I can do it alone" attitude is everywhere. Thinking of you, and sending you light....I have a Brother-in-law in Keene on Spofford Lake, are you near there?

  6. This post is acute and brilliantly aware.
    My family (and me as I grow less so) are like yours. Thanks for being such a helpful companion on this crazy path called life, Carol.And yes, Hawaii has many human things wrong like anywhere else, but nature and the spirit seem very powerful here.

    Comfort Spiral

  7. Hoping your weekend is peaceful.

  8. Thanks for all your support. I did give my mother a call but she did not seem aware of the significance of the date so I did not bring it up. I spoke of it to a couple people. You guys are the best.

    To Mental Mama-the Keene area is lovely, was back there last NOvember for the CoDA convention!