A daily record of gratitude; from quilting to photography to a mix of technology, books, movies and the musings of life!

Welcome to my Blog of my daily gratitude and photo of the day!

Since January 1, 2012, my goal is to write a daily sentence or two (or paragraph or two) about gratitude of the day and to include one photo (at least) that I took that day (but will add others from time to time). It has definitely been a challenge most days throughout the past eight years, and welcomed the challenge again this year - 2020 - Covid and all. I hope you will continue the ride with me!

Thursday, November 11, 2021

Military Thank You and Reflection on 59!

I want to take this opportunity to Thank our military; past, present and future for their service. So many brave souls have fought unbelievable battles, even lost their lives, so we can live in freedom. 11/11 is burned into the fabric of what makes America. 

Now: Reflection on 59 years young! As I write this, I have two more hours left of being 59...

When I turned 59 last November, it reminded me to get my full physical and mammogram. Since we were all in heavy lockdown, getting an in-person appointment was spread out on everyone’s calendar and patience in seeing your doctor was paramount. I finally got in to see my GP (general practitioner) doc in early December.

As I discussed some issues with her after the obligatory height/weight/BP were taken etc., I, off the cuff, gave some concrete of examples of those issues. I was thinking they were “nothing,” or at least hoping they were “nothing.” But the doc wasn’t so sure.

Before I left the office, I was laden down with prescriptions and testing orders. All the testing was done the last two weeks of December. It wasn’t looking like turning 59 was going to be fun and carefree like I envisioned.

As the results trickled in, more testing was needed. The big one was needing a surgical procedure (D&C) to find out even more on what was happening to me in the female parts of the anatomy. That was in January of 2021.

Not only was I dealing with an unknown health challenge, I was full out in publishing my first book, The Focused Fight. It was pandemonium for me.

A huge sigh of heaviness washed over me when the results came back with the diagnosis of Uterine Cancer. Yikes! The night before that fateful dx, I finally received my last piece for the book; Dr. Shad’s foreword. I was begging for it for a long time! Coincidence? I don’t know.

My OB/GYN oncologist surgeon, Abbie Fields, said that I needed the surgery (radical hysterectomy) ASAP. However, in the midst of Covid-19 and being in a hospital full of patients and staff dealing with the pandemic, OR (operating rooms) were at a premium. She went to bat for me and was able to secure a time for me on February 17, 2021.

The few weeks between surgeries flew by with finishing the last vestiges of the book. There was no time for worry, or at least that is what I told myself. I wrote some passages about my feelings and posted them in my WIC2 (Writing in Community 2nd session) which was a huge help for me mentally. The community, as well as my family, rallied around me something fierce. I will never forget it. Their generosity and caring catapulted me to wheel down on that gurney with a will of steel knowing I had an army of supporters no matter the outcome, or stage of cancer, I would eventually be placed in.

And then, 10 days after surgery, though still dealing with a catheter since my surgeon blew through two of the three layers of the bladder (it’s a tight space I’m told), she called me with my results. I was practically hyperventilating but tried to keep it together as she spoke. A rush of emotions flooded my brain. I could barely speak. I'm very thankful for the speaker function on the phone so Bill could listen in and I didn’t have to talk. Dr. Fields blurted out that the pathology report indicated Stage 1A (the best outcome from the diagnosis).

No further treatment was needed.

A scream of joy erupted from me. Since I was a hurtin’ cowgirl, a happy dance had to be put on hold.

Receiving that call unexpectedly was the best news of the year for me-perhaps my entire life for me personally. I was (still am) so very grateful for that good pathology report even though I still had to give myself 30 doses of Lovenox (enoxaparin sodium/anticoagulant) shots into the stomach - one a day for 30 days.

After that call, I had to get my big girl panties on and fight for a full blown recovery. Hubby Bill sat on me, figuratively, but I think he thought sometime literally, so I wouldn’t do too much and just heal. He was adamant to keep me safe and in the healing zone the entire time. If it wasn’t for him and my immediate family, I’m not sure I would be healed quite as well. I am grateful beyond words that was the case.

When fuzzy brain finally flew the coup (and I was off the couch), I resumed my focus to publishing my ebook first. I was able to push that KDP button on March 11, 2021. Two weeks later, on March 25th, the paperback version was on Amazon. I was flying high!

As the year progressed, I got stronger. My wounds healed nicely and my energy began to return. I used “laughter is the best medicine” while in recovery. Though it hurt to laugh at times (especially at first), I watched three shows that kept me laughing and my spirits high: reruns of Friends, Seinfeld and The Big Bang Theory.

By summer, and feeling stronger from one day to the next, Bill and I were walking a good amount: 3-4 miles a day. I was also planning an ambitious summer of travel on eight consecutive weekends for weddings/graduations/book signing parties as well as our two week vacation in Colorado.

Thankful beyond words that can’t adequately convey, every single one of those plans came to fruition. Despite all that went down early in the year, I was feeling like me again. On the outside, it might not have looked like a slow build up, but it was all thanks to Bill. He was correct in keeping me on the down low for so long so we could do and have the fun as we anticipated before all the hullabaloo.

By the end of August, I felt well enough to start refereeing. I’ll admit, I was a bit nervous on that first game on the pitch as a center referee but the skills of running and sprinting came back with no problems. I even ran in a few 5K races to round out getting back into shape.

Toward the end of my 59th year, I finished the high school soccer season, am back sewing and quilting like a fiend, I am writing every day, and frankly, blessed to be able to feel this good. Everything has exceeded my expectations beyond my wildest dreams.

There are many people to thank in getting me to this point in my life. Some have passed away, but those still kicking it here on Earth are my heroes and heroines. They have shaped me into a person that is affectionately called: Wild T or Wild Ter.


Finally, I get to share my love with Bill, Olivia and Ryan, plus so many amazing people placed in my path on this thing called life. These include the treasure trove of friends all over the world, including my Rhodes Girls (high school); the BGGGW (Bowling Green Girls Gone Wild, AKA as college friends), my quilting and guild and bee-mates, the families associated with Special Love, Inc., and other foundations, the writers in the WIC and my fellow referees.

After publishing in March, I now get to share The Focused Fight and market it to anyone who would like to hear about the Power of Community & Connection and Post Traumatic Growth, plus a whole bunch of other stuff like the Power of a Chocolate Chip Cookie.

As I write this reflection, I am laughing and tearing up (tee up “It’s my Birthday so I’ll Cry if I Want to”). It’s been one heck of a ride I’ll tell ya!

Cheers to 60! (It’s teed up less than 2 hours away.)

I promise to do 60 proud (and waaaay less drama!).

Thank you for reading. You all are the wind beneath my wings.



The Best Daughter took me to dinner at The Little Pearl in Washington DC

The Best Daughter and me 11/11/21

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