Tuesday, November 24, 2015

An Early Thanksgiving

Al, left, Doug, right, Aug. 2014
I have much to be thankful for. These two cousins may not have seen a lot of one another growing up, but they have gotten closer the past year and that has meant my once-upon-a-time nephew, Alan, is part of my life again, too. He calls me Auntie which warms my heart. The photo was taken at Doug's birthday camp-out weekend last year.

Ramona, Douglas, Kenny 1965

I am grateful that even though Doug's dad and I divorced when he was little, he still grew up knowing the love of both his parents and two extended families.

Doug and Shelly's wedding Oct. 1988
I am so, so, so very thankful for my daughter-in-law, Shelly. Not only have they shared more than 25 years of marriage, she has been there with him during the usual ups and downs.
And for the past seven months she has been there for him as he faced a life-threatening disease.

First time acting a pirate, 1967

When he was little, I could deal with his hurts - like when he tried to poke his eye out while running with a toy bow and arrow. Usually all it took was a hug and kiss of the 'owie'.

Grandpa Doug and Jack

But you can't kiss cancer away and that is what Doug was diagnosed with shortly after this picture of him and his youngest grandchild was taken last March.

Doug and his faithful companion, Clyde
Yesterday was Doug's positron emission tomography scan (PET scan) an imaging test that would show how his tissue and organs were functioning. It would reveal if there was still cancer present in his body.
After the scan, Shelly posted on the 'family' Facebook page she had set up for us that we wouldn't know the results until today. Another day of waiting and wondering and hoping.

Doug had made huge progress since August when he was hospitalized toward the end of all his radiation and chemotherapy treatments. Being fed through a tube, using suction for secretions he could no longer swallow, dealing with pain, he was still able to share a laugh with his mommy.

Then around two o'clock in the afternoon yesterday, he called me. I knew that it meant he had news. "Mom, the radiation oncologist just called me." Always I can tell by his voice if things are good or bad. But not this time. I felt a frisson of fear for the first time in seven months.
It was only a heart beat or two, although it seemed like longer, when he said, "As of right now, I'm cancer free. There's no evidence of cancer anywhere in my body."

I felt as happy and carefree as he and Katrina and Rodney look in this photo.


Grandpa Louis, Grandma Ruth & Doug

Our guardian angel is still watching over us.

The remainder of this post will be a pictorial celebration of my first born.

Graduation Day 1980, Ramona, Doug & Kenny

Doug & Brock 1983

Mother and Son, August, 1962

Father and Son, 1963

Daddy Doug with Katrina, Zachary and Alyssa

Duggan at MN Renaissance Faire

My Thanksgiving came a little early this year. May yours be as happy and thankful as mine.

1 comment:

  1. My daughter has battled cancer and is still dealing with the souvenirs left behind from the battle. I celebrate with you.