Liz was mourning the loss of her best friend Gingles. A beautiful collie husky dog that she had for many years. Her father adopted Gingles from the animal control as a puppy. Gingles had a unique look on her. She had beautiful thick long golden-brown fur with light brown husky and collie markings on her face and a white diamond on her chest. Gingles went everywhere with Liz, camping, and at one time when she was working out of a trailer for a bit, Gingles was right there by her side. When Gingles became older, she was in a lot of pain and could not walk up the stairs.
It was a stormy night. The wind was blowing, the lightning was flashing, and the thunder was booming. It was a lady’s night out but with the rain they were not too sure about going out to party, so they decided to stay in. Melissa was having a sleepover with the ladies, Liz, Dorothy, and Alison. They had just finished watching a lovely movie and having a delicious pasta takeout dinner. They were thinking of going out as it was supposed to be a lady’s night out, but the storm clouds rolled in and the temperature had dropped.
Earlier on in the year on January 30, 2020, I was diagnosed with cancer. It was news that I was not expecting, and it was very surprising. The year before it had started out as a small bump on the skin mistaken for a hemorrhoid. As the year of 2019 ended, it had grown rapidly and after a few trips to the emergency rooms at the hospitals, it became larger and very painful. I finally said to the doctor that I need it to be cut off which was what I was hoping they would do the other times that I went to the hospital. The other times, they thought it was just clotted and cut the clots out. On the day of the operation, I was at Church, ready to play the drums, however I was in so much pain and felt that I was a little off beat. I ended up leaving and going to the walk-in clinic and told them my situation. They looked at it and said they will send me to the Newmarket hospital. I went there and the doctor and surgeon looked at it and said they will operate. That evening I had the surgery. The surgeon told me after I woke up that he did send a sample for testing. That is when I found out at the end of January what it was. I started radiation and that seemed to take care of the anal melanoma however, as the months continued the cancer had spread to my lungs and my liver. It is an aggressive form of cancer called melanoma. Since being diagnosed and finding out it was spreading fast, I have quit drinking any alcohol and have been exercising regularly. I started using an app for guidance and exercise which has coaches that guide you along the way. It is an extremely helpful and motivating app. My weight has been going up and down due to the treatment and medication. This journey has been a rough one, but I am happy that I have had a good support system from the healthcare workers, my family, co-workers, and friends. With the exercise, it helps that I have a loving caring puppy as well who always makes sure she wakes me up early in the morning. She is a highly active golden retriever husky and she loves her walks and playtime which helps to keep me active as well. She often comes along for the car ride when I am being dropped off for treatment. She really greeted me with lots of kisses when I came home from being in the hospital for seven days because of a bad reaction that I had to the immunotherapy. Now I am on chemotherapy and hoping for the best. I have been able to have my home office and have had a great deal of support from my work. They have been very accommodating. I am not to go out anywhere in the public as much due to being immunocompromised and I have used my down time to exercise, walk the dog, write, rest, and read. I play the drums and due to my pain, I realize I may have to switch legs for the base drum. It makes sense as well because when I’m not using the drums and just doing a beat with my legs, I often lead with the left leg so I believe I have made a discovery that I may be left legged for the drums instead of right legged. I miss playing the drums at church and church has started back up again however, I am still not able to attend due to my health. I also enjoy singing and creating poems and songs occasionally. Throughout this journey, I have learned a lot about health. Drink lots of water, keep your spirits up, exercise regularly and do not give up.