Susan WonderStone's Blog


Why did you lie to me? Why didn’t you tell me?

Why did you lie to me? Why didn’t you tell me? They aren’t always the same.  My ex husband would call me a liar for omitting what he considered to be important information. To him, withholding information was identical to lying. Learning what he thought was important vs what I thought was important was the miscommunication.

The last few weeks, I’ve been lonely, sad and confused, wondering why people who I thought I was close to had been lying to me. I mentioned it to my son, who quickly enlightened me. The last few weeks weren’t about being lied to, it was about opening my eyes and seeing the truth. A few quick checks when I originally felt the incongruency of the words I was being told vs the way it made me feel, would have revealed the truth months ago. Was I so lonely that I wanted to maintain those relationships even though I knew something was off?  A few quick phone calls and internet searches later… The FAA had no record of the husband who had been the pilot in a Beechcraft King Air plane crash with a fatality of a passenger. The police department had no premise records of arrests made at a specific address. Google images and Zillow revealed that the address wasn’t in a multi-million dollar gated community with a giant pool, but a small neighborhood of condominiums off of a busy road with a Walmart at the closest stop light and the nearest pool in a backyard of the next neighborhood over. County records revealed that the roommate I was told was an unattractive beer drinking buddy, turned out to be a wife. Friends asked to borrow money and showed me documentation, indicating when they were getting paid. That day is long gone. Even though it didn’t feel right, I didn’t want my  past money screwovers to make my current decisions.  I’ve often slipped, but try not to punish current people in my life for injustices of people in my past. When new people treat me in the same poor ways as people no longer in my life, I’ve noticed that I’m the common denominator. Funny how when I see problems, I’m always there! (Ho’oponopono)

Just kidding! I’m thankful for the truths you showed me!

When my first husband didn’t get the job we moved to Seattle for, he became a private investigator. I didn’t remember how much I enjoyed finding the truth. Well, finding the truth – the answers, to other people’s questions. Why did it hurt when I discovered the truth wasn’t what I thought it was from some of the important people in my life?

599379_4349684106296_1512385622_n

Cameron and I were talking more about lying vs the truth. He reminded me those people are only being my mirrors. He asked me how I’m lying to myself. I told him I didn’t think I was. The conversation went on a tangent, talking about the trails we were hiking. Unknowingly to me, it cleverly went back.

“Mom, do you have cancer?”

“I don’t know.” Pretending I’m the healthy person I see myself being, but not totally honest by saying yes or no.

“Nailed it!” Cameron said.

“Nailed what?” I asked.

He went on to remind me that I do have cancer on the back of my neck, on my chest, on my left leg and possibly on the back of my head. Right now, the skin is intact, but I can still feel the lumps under the skin. We are working with energetic healing techniques for awhile before I black salve the areas again. Plus, as effective as it is, black salve hurts and I’m filling my time with things that feel good!

He asked me how I can let the go of the cancer if I won’t acknowledge its existence. You won’t change something that you don’t think is a problem.

Oh my! He’s been listening! All these years, I’ve been teaching him things and now he’s showing me the part of my mirror I was missing! He’s right! When things are working, we don’t normally change them. It’s when things no longer work that we want something better.

I do my daily treatments and continue eating my ketogenic diet, but I don’t think a lot about why I do it. Once in awhile, someone will ask about my scars and I tell them I have melanoma. It has become something I live with, not a life threatening disease. The looks on their faces tell me I should be more concerned. Sometimes, it scares me and I think about it too long, scaring myself more.

Because of current statistics, cancer is seen by many as a death sentence. Most people are devastated when they get the news that a loved one has cancer. Some patients don’t want the sadness from friends and loved ones, so they don’t tell anyone. I was considered “terminal” for over a year before I told my family. If I thought I sounded sick, I wouldn’t answer the phone and would call people back when I felt like I could fake it and sound good enough that they wouldn’t ask questions. My mom noticed I coughed a lot when we talked on the phone. It was such a normal thing, I denied I was coughing much. I tried to tune it out. Since even back then, I had stopped going to doctors, I don’t know if cancer made it to my lungs or not. Now, after learning about the mold that grows inside saline breast implants, the coughing could have been from mold toxicity.

When I finally told people I had been dealing with recurrent melanoma with liver and lymphatic system metastasis, they didn’t ask why I lied to them, they asked “Why didn’t you tell me?”

I talk to cancer patients who keep their diagnosis a secret, a lot. The “I” I’m about to speak of is only a percentage of cancer patients, but it is a common theme.

Especially around the holidays, I make excuses why I can’t spend time with family or friends like I used to. Too much going on at work, nobody to feed the fish or put compost in the worm bin. I do my best to only show up when I feel like I look good. I don’t want people to treat me like I’m dying. Sometimes, whether from the cancer or the treatments, my memory doesn’t quite work like it used to. I forget birthdays, anniversaries, doctor’s appointments, lunch dates,payment due dates. Things that are important to me. I feel like shit when I let you down. I tell myself I will try harder, but I forget again. You quit calling. Would you still be mad if you knew I was dying?  Would a forgotten birthday be remembered, along with your refusal to communicate, after I’m gone? Would you ask “why didn’t you tell me?”

Just because a friend or family member is being distant, doesn’t mean they have cancer or any other disease they don’t want to admit to. It does however mean, they may need your love now, more than ever.

Those who purposely lied to me. I’ll love them at a distance.

15195921_10211246433262642_2650689924001560894_o

Love, gratitude and blessings

~Susan



Wiener Friendly Soap – Because it Feels Good
December 7, 2016, 1:26 am
Filed under: Cleansing, health, Laughing, Love, Wiener Friendly Soap

1798991_686137648117352_1603836392_o

Wiener Friendly Soap. Someone else built the website. I used to call him my hero. The way I see it, once my hero, always my hero, but he’s a ghost now. Hopefully soon, I’ll figure out what I need to do to change the website. Originally, he developed the recipe and made the soap to help me with finances because of his love for me. Before he vanished, he gave me the recipe he used. I bought new molds and made another RC Willie stamp. I make the soap now while playing 528Hz music. It’s the “love” frequency. I’ve been told it affects everything around it. I know I feel happier when I’m listening to it compared to music that’s not 528Hz. Either way, I’m happy when I make the soap and I feel like it makes the soap happier too!  Wiener Friendly Soap has always been made with LOVE! Just look at it! RC Willie has always been loved and happy, but now he feels happy too!   Wiener Friendly Soap is still made using all natural, organic oils. It’s luxurious lather is great for cleaning all body parts, not just wieners.

Like most things in my life, I LOVE Wiener Friendly Soap because it feels good. I love the way the bubbles glide over my skin. I love how smooth my legs are after shaving with its luxurious lather.  I love how soft my skin and hair feel after my shower. I love how my hands still feel moisturized no matter how many times I wash them throughout the day.

Whether you’re using your hands to gently wash your body with Wiener Friendly Soap’s emollient rich suds, or vigorously scrubbing with an exfoliating bubbly wash cloth, you’ll love the way your skin feels both in the shower and after. Showering with a friend?  Be assured that even if they don’t know the dynamics of where soap shouldn’t go, if they slip up or wash the wrong direction, Wiener Friendly Soap, really is wiener friendly! Penis friendly, vagina friendly, whatever “they” call theirs, it’s friendly to that too! Wiener Friendly Soap is also friendly to faces, butt cracks, armpits and between your toes.

RC Willie wants you to feel good! No judgements. One rule. You can wash any body part as fast or slow as you like.

Wiener Friendly Soap – Because it Feels Good!

Love, gratitude and blessings

~Susan



Wonder Woman at Mukilteo Lighthouse Festival

 

Once again…Wonder Woman showed up for the Mukilteo Lighthouse festival. For those of you I met for the first time and a recap for the rest of y’all who follow my adventures…

For those of you who took pictures of me, please send them to me here, susanwonderstone@yahoo.com or on my Facebook page https://Facebook.com/susan.story.71

My son Cameron and I have been participating in the parade since he was in 2nd grade. He turns 20 this week.  Since the festival is always near his birthday, we invited his friends to celebrate with us. Sometimes we had a party after the parade,  complete with singing and birthday cake. At some point along the way, he decided to make a “FREE HUGS” sign. He would run from side to side along the parade route, with his arms out offering hugs to anyone who wanted one.

In the beginning, when I first made my outfit, I realized that when people saw me they often smiled, laughed  and asked to take pictures with me. We all tend to smile when someone smiles at us. It’s just as contagious as a yawn! People who were together, but not saying anything, would smile and communicate with each other. Regardless of whether they are having problems with relationships or work, recently lost a fur kid or other family member, have health challenges, are “drugged” from the crap food they just ate…or, whatever other things are going on in their heads, comnecting and communicating with another human always makes life easier to deal with. I’ve continued doing it, not to make it easier to deal with my own stuff, but to bless others with my will, in hopes that they’ll find their own.

Friday at my retail job, I dealt with the biggest jerk I’ve ever dealt with in the store. It spun me for a bit, because I really thought I could change the constipated look on his face into a smile before he left. I wondered what could be so bad in his life to make him nasty to not only me, but several of my coworkers he also interacted with. After about 30 minutes of wanting to chase him down in the parking lot, and tell him that I’d pray for him because his terminal cancer and putting his dog down this week must be challenging to his entire existence, I realized that jerks only show up in my life to check my own attitude. I really paid attention to myself for the rest of the day, still having the goal to make everyone I came in contact with, a little better than before they talked to me. I try to always make it a goal for me, even when I’m in so much pain I should be at home in bed. Like after the parade, when I slowly wandered around the Festival.  I did my best to smile. I talked to everyone who made eye contact with me. I met a beautiful woman named Demetria, who after a health challenge of her own, started a business providing  shoes to low income and foster children.

image

People are amazing when you give them a chance to tell you who they are!

What’s my story?

As many of you know, my first melanoma diagnosis was in March 2000. I had two more surgeries in 2002.  In 2004, aside from skin lesions on my face and just about every body part, I had an open 2inch hole on my right butt cheek and the cancer was in my liver and lymphatic system. In August that year,  my doctor told me I probably wouldn’t make it through the summer. I knew, based on the conversation I had with my dermatologist in 2002, that there were no treatments that would give me hope. I cried  daily for months, wondering what I could do to save my life.  I researched and implemented everything that made sense. Over the years, I’ve stopped things that no longer seem to be helping and added things newly discovered.  A few days ago, my friend Armi, who I met in Tijuana, suggested I put raw honey in the hole in my leg. Why had I forgotten how many times raw honey had helped the skin lesions?   I filled the hole with raw honey, aside from the other things I’m still doing, and after two days it looks so much better!

In 2007,  I broke my back in a skydiving accident. It was my third jump. I had an L1 burst fracture. The staff in the emergency room told me I would probably never walk again. I must have said 100 times “Thank you God, I can move my toes!”  I believed that if I could move my toes I would walk again!  I kept telling them that they did not have my permission to touch any cancer they found in my body. I believed  what I was doing was working, and didn’t want biopsies or other medical treatments to interfere with my healing. My neurosurgeon  asked where the cancer was. Even though I still had lumps in areas of lymph nodes, he showed me the CT scan if my liver. There were no spots on my liver. I KNEW  if I could eliminate melanoma from my liver, I could recover from a broken back. He put me back together with screws in L2 and T12, with flexible plastic rods in between to give me full range of motion. They made me walk soon after I came out of anesthesia, three days after the accident.  I have walked every day since! It took me awhile to get my courage (or stupidity- however you look at it) to skydive again. I have 40 jumps now. Someday I’ll travel and jump in every city, state and country I can!

I’m not going to list all of the challenges I’ve faced, because it seems when I signed up for this life, that I agreed to face most obstacles others do, so I could empathize with the masses.

After I made my rounds at the festival, I went home to do the cancer treatments I didn’t have time for in the morning. I was so tired, but didn’t have time for a nap before I was supposed to be back for dinner with my Northwest Photo family.

I love my spray tan, sponsored by Oasis Airbrush Tanning!

 

The evening was just as amazing as the day!

While looking for the kids, I spun a wheel and won a month of free karate classes. I later found them giving hugs to the people who were within ear shot of the dude yelling at everyone, telling them they’re going to burn in hell for eternity. I’ve never understood how anyone thinks anger, hatred and fear will help convert another to their ways. Meanwhile, the Sikh group was dancing, hugging and appeared happy. But…that’s another story.

Dinner was great! Sunset was great! Connecting was great! Fireworks were great! I fell asleep with my feet soaking in Epsom salt, apple cider vinegar and frankincense.

 

Life is good!

Love, gratitude and blessings

~Susan

 



Buddy
September 7, 2016, 12:16 am
Filed under: Death, Gratitude, Hope, Love | Tags: , , , , , ,

Last night when I got home, my son Cameron and his girlfriend Rayla, were about to leave to take Buddy into the woods for his last hike.

I still remember Buddy’s picture on the PAWS website, six years ago.  Immediately when I saw him, I said “That’s my dog!” Cameron and I went to see him that day when I got off work. It was just before closing, so they told us to come back the next day. Buddy was scared. He cowered in the back of the kennel. His neuter surgery had gone bad and they had to open things back up to clean out the infection. The staff made it seem like that’s why he was scared. I was concerned he could be a fear biter, until we got our Rottweiler Keta, out of the car to meet him. He followed her around the play area and seemed so excited! He was leery of us, but loved Keta. We went back the next day and brought him home. We only had Keta for 6 more weeks until her kidneys shut down from bone cancer. She had broken Buddy in. He was afraid inside the house, but excited and loved going for walks in the woods. Over the years, Buddy continued to be afraid of certain people, mostly men wearing baseball caps, but always men who were smoking. We could rough-house with him outside, but if anyone touched him inside the house without warning, he’d pee. It took several years for that to stop.

I’ve always wondered what happened to him before we met. I had a goal to prove to him that some people are good.

Five years ago, Buddy appeared to catch a squirrel. I thought he broke its back. Buddy was gentle, but dropped it when I screamed. It crawled away, dragging its back end. It died as it reached the other side of the driveway.  Buddy cried. He seemed disappointed it didn’t play with him. When we saw the third squirrel dragging its back end, my partner took it to PAWS. They have a wildlife center. They told him that local squirrels had been getting a raccoon parasite that attacks their spinal cord, paralyzingly their back ends.

About 2 years ago, Buddy’s back legs started getting weak. His right leg was worse than the left, but both atrophied. We were told he had degenerative myelopathy. It’s like ms in people. Recently, I researched ms and parasites and found several articles stating that the ms patients they tested had an unusual amoeba in their blood. I’m pretty sure we aren’t supposed to have amoebas.

They say there’s no way to cure degenerative myelopathy,  but regular exercise can slow the progression. I wondered how long I could help Buddy and keep him alive. We continued our daily walks in the woods. As time went on, Buddy’s legs shrunk more and his walking was increasingly worse. It was so bad in March when I had my surgery, I thought he might die during the time I wasn’t able to drive. He looked happy though. He ate every day. He drank water. He pee’d and pooped, although it didn’t appear he had any control over when he went. Most days, he’d drag himself out the back door and down the two steps to go potty in the back yard.

Aside from my doctors in Mexico and my neurosurgeon who put me back together after I broke my back, I believe all the medical doctors I’ve seen over the last twelve years, wrote me off shortly after meeting me. Last year, a doctor at a walk-in clinic, knowingly prescribed a narcotic I was allergic to. The pharmacist told me he didn’t want me to take it, but the doctor did. He said that if I took it, to sit in a chair with my phone and if I had breathing difficulty, to call 911 immediately. Seeing the open tumors on my neck and bottom of my left foot, was he trying to help me with pain or help me die from an allergic reaction? Even though I wasn’t ready to die, I felt like he could come in handy when the time comes that I am. I was angry that if I didn’t know what I do, that doctor could’ve been my end. Why should anyone have the right to decide when someone else will die?

Why should I be the one to decide when Buddy would die?  I know it’s considered humane to put a dog to “sleep” when they’re in pain. How do you know of a dog is in pain?

About a month and a half ago, Buddy started drooling a lot. I asked my neighbor, who is a vet. She said if we had put Buddy down a year ago, it wouldn’t have been too soon. The drooling in a non drooling dog is a sign of pain. Someone else told me that in the wild, an animal wouldn’t let the others know it was in pain, because they’d leave it behind. How could I know if Buddy was too miserable to keep going? I’ve been so sick at times over the years that the people around me gave up on me. I guess I just wanted Buddy to make the decision and die on his own. Cameron wasn’t ready. When his friends were killed on July 30th, I really didn’t want to make that decision.

Last week, we had a family meeting and decided it was time. The first available appointment at our vet, was this morning at 10. Back to my first paragraph…

I asked the kids if I could go with them. Our plan was to get Buddy in Rayla’s car, drive to the woods and then, I don’t know what. Cameron enticed Buddy to drag himself to the front porch. He picked him up to take him down the steps and driveway to the car. Buddy started peeing as soon as Cameron picked him up. He held him still until he stopped peeing. I went back inside to get towels to dry Buddy off. Before I got back, Buddy ran down the driveway, dragging his back legs behind him. I washed the porch and sidewalk off with the hose, while the kids dried the pee off of Buddy. We all cried on the way to the woods. It’s only 3 blocks. Buddy wanted to walk, but Cameron picked him up. We barely got past the trailhead when he put Buddy down by a favorite peepee tree. Pretty sure most dogs pee there. Buddy dragged himself around it, sniffing what his friends had left.

image

Cameron wanted Buddy to have one last walk in his favorite places. We’ve walked in Japanese Gulch several times a week and often daily, since we moved here 17 years ago. Cameron taught me to hike in the dark without headlamps, being careful to feel what’s under my feet. It has helped greatly with my other hikes. In the gulch, I could also see the dogs, which helped as long as they stayed on the trail. In the dark, we mainly took the same trail. There’s a spot we call “the lookout”. On full moon nights, we’d go to the lookout and howl at the moon. Buddy would howl with us, while Lucy the bulmastiff,  just looked at us like we were crazy.

Last night, we walked as far as Cameron could go, then stopped to rest, lay on the ground with Buddy and talk. We heard our friends Debra and Cooper. Buddy sat up and started whining, wanting to see his friends. Cooper is a rambunctious puppy and Debra always has treats. I yelled “Cooper” once, but with all of us crying, didn’t yell out again.

It was getting dark by the time we got to the lookout. Buddy wasn’t interested in howling. We really weren’t either. We decided to take a shortcut because the chance of falling is higher in the dark and even higher while carrying a large dog. I cried nearly the whole way, watching the love Cameron and Buddy shared.  It was only a mile. It was a mile I’ll always remember!

We all got up this morning, knowing what the day would bring. We all tried to hold back the tears, but didn’t. Rayla drove. The vet and staff were great! I wouldn’t want their jobs. I won’t go into the details, but Buddy died with all of us holding him. We showed him that regardless of what happened before we met, some people are good. He knew we loved him.

It’s only been 13 hours. Every time I’ve walked thru the kitchen, I expect to have to step over him, but he’s not there. I’m tired and crying again. It seems this year’s theme has been loss. I hope this is the last one for awhile!

We LOVE you, Buddy! Thank you for teaching us so much and loving us back.

Love, gratitude and blessings

~Susan



Missed Opportunities or Distant Friendship

image

Another beautiful story about friendship and connections. Written by Darian Clogston, another of my son Cameron’s best friends. And a little Harry Potter spoiler…

 

I went to Jake Long‘s memorial service this weekend, and it was the most difficult funeral I have ever been to.

Not that I have been to a whole lot of funerals, but for a twenty-year-old, the few I have been to already feel like far too many. Jake’s was different for me though, because he and I were not friends…not until after he died. Prior to a week ago, when I had been asked if I knew Jake Long – and I had been asked before, on at least a couple occasions – my answer was, “The name is familiar; I would probably recognize him if you showed me a picture…” His profile picture on Facebook would jumpstart my memory, prompting me to add on, “Oh, he sat with the group of guys behind Blake and I in Mr. Schillinger’s calculus class my senior year”. Not really a significant connection to bring up, considering that I essentially never talked to, or even really acknowledged, that group of guys sitting behind us. I’ve thought about that class every day since Jake died though. There were 180 school days where I could’ve tried to talk to them. 180 missed opportunities where I never said, “Hey”, or, “Good morning”, or anything. I’d just walk in every day, glancing a little skeptically at Will Kramer rocking on the back legs of his chair – that drove the stage manager side of me nuts – and then I’d take my seat next to Blake. And Blake is just such a friendly and positive human to sit next to at 7:20 in morning; It made sense to mostly just talk to him and to ignore everyone else as much as possible.

I know I can’t fill my mind with the what-if’s though. That’s not fair to myself, or to Jake, or to anyone. That class was years ago, and I can’t change the fact that I never talked to Jake when I had such a prime opportunity to. The connection between Jake and I started to grow even years before that though. The problem was just that neither of us knew it.

Jake had taken part in the Summit program, through which he grew a group of guy friends that became a very solid, tightknit bunch. Cameron – one of my two very best friends now – was a part of Jake’s group then. I’ve heard a remarkable amount of stories and anecdotes in the past week about what Jake was like back then and about the shenanigans that this group of guys was able to get into together, and everything I hear makes me love Jake a little more.

And let me tell you, he’s amazing. I’m not going to re-cap all of the stories I’ve been able to hear about him, or share all of the photos I’ve seen of him in the past week, because other people have shared those with me, and I feel like their memories are better left in their own hands to keep sharing. But either way, there is no denying that Jake is one awesome guy. From what I can tell, he and I would get along so well if we had ever had the chance to hang out together.

One of the biggest differences between us is the fact that Jake loves baseball and I love theatre. But within our own realms, each of us thrives. We’re both driven and passionate when we get involved with something. Baseball and theatre are our outlets. They allow us space to practice, and to persevere, and to overcome obstacles, and to build community, and to engage, and to inspire. These activities keep us going. They give us something to look forward to.

Attending Jake’s memorial service was surreal in a way. It is one thing to know and love someone, have them pass away, and to then grieve for them by reflecting on their life, celebrating their achievements, and sharing the stories you have about them. But to begin to know and love someone after they’re gone – that is a whole other beast to tackle. Responding to the question, “How do you know Jake?”, was harder than it ever had been before. I hadn’t even known that Cameron and Jake had been so close until after Jake died. And Cameron has been the biggest contributing factor to me learning about Jake, but I have also witnessed an outpouring of love and stories coming from the other friends that Jake and I share, as well as from his family at the service. So simply saying that we have a mutual best friend doesn’t seem to sum it up. It feels more like Jake has become one of my best friends himself.

Late on the night of the funeral, when I finally went home, I was welcomed by new groceries that my mom had picked up that day. It was late, and I was sleepy and I wanted to go to bed, but I also didn’t quite feel like I could sleep yet. So, being the huge nerd that I am, I sat down in our living room and started thinking about Harry Potter. Often, I find myself using the morals found in Harry Potter to get me through rough patches of life. It’s as if J.K. Rowling has a direct line to my heart through her writing. This past week, I have been drawing inspiration specifically from Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Spoilers from this and other books will occur if you continue reading). The end of the fourth installment to the series is where Hogwarts loses one of it’s students, Cedric Diggory, to the hands of Voldemort, and where Dumbledore tells his school that they must band together for the light to rise out of the dark. I have found this part of the series very relatable this week because Jake, Anna, and Jordan are all a little bit like Kamiak’s Cedric Diggory. The sense of community and love felt at the end of the fourth book was exactly what I was reflecting on when I looked up and saw two copies of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child sitting on the mantle. Now, I love Harry Potter. I love the books, I love the movies, I feel kind of iffy about all the spin-off books and movies, but they are all an extension of the Wizarding World that I consider myself to be a part of, so I love them too. BUT all of that being said, when I picked up my copy of this new book, I didn’t know anything about it. I had heard it was coming out soon…but I had no idea what was inside. I opened the front cover to read the inside flap; it informed me that this was actually not a book at all. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is a play, and so I was holding in my hands not a book, but a script. Continuing to read the inside cover flap, I also learned that the play is already in production in London’s West End. The world premiere was July 30, 2016. The date that Jake, Anna, and Jordan died.

I took all of this as a sign. I needed to start reading. The timing was too perfect, and a play about Harry Potter – yes there are already other Harry Potter-related plays, but one that J.K. Rowling wrote and brought to life – it felt like it was meant for me to start reading immediately. I made a snack, took my new script up to my room, and jumped in. I made it three scenes before falling asleep. So the next day when I woke up, all I did was read. I read until I finished the play, only stopping for a bathroom break or two. And it AMAZED me how much of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child depended on Cedric’s death. The entire play is about the idea that while you can’t change the past, you can allow the past to inspire you to live.

My favorite part of the script, the part that resonates with me the most, is this exchange between Harry and a portrait of Dumbledore:

DUMBLEDORE attempts to reach out of the portrait – but he can’t. He begins to cry but tries to hide it.

DUMBLEDORE: But I had to meet you in the end…eleven years old, and you were so brave. So good. You walked uncomplainingly along the path that had been laid at your feet. Of course I loved you…and I knew that it would happen all over again…that where I loved, I would cause irreparable damage. I am no fit person to love…I have never loved without causing harm.

A beat.

HARRY: You would have hurt me less if you had told me this then.

DUMBLEDORE (openly weeping now): I was blind. That is what love does. I couldn’t see that you needed to hear this closed-up, tricky, dangerous old man…loved you.

A pause. The two men are overcome with emotion.

HARRY: It isn’t true that I never complained.

DUMBLEDORE: Harry, there is never a perfect answer in this messy, emotional world. Perfection is beyond the reach of humankind, beyond the reach of magic. In every shining moment of happiness is that drop of poison: the knowledge that pain will come again. Be honest to those you love, show your pain. To suffer is as human as to breathe.

HARRY: You have said that to me once before.

DUMBLEDORE: It is all I have to offer you tonight.

He begins to walk away.

HARRY: Don’t go!

DUMBLEDORE: Those that we love never truly leave us, Harry. There are things that death cannot touch. Paint…and memory…and love.

HARRY: I loved you too, Dumbledore.

DUMBLEDORE: I know.

Jake, as well as Anna and Jordan, were taken from us too soon. And we can’t ever change that. But through the memories and love that they instilled while they were alive, they gave so much light to everyone around them. And so we have to live for them, spreading their love and memory and light along with our own, Always.

*Upon reading this, Jansen – another member of Jake and Cameron’s Summit friend group and another friend of mine – wrote me this: “I remember him saying that you were in Calc together. He said that he didn’t know you too well but he thought you were cool and he wished he got to know you better in Calc[…]Jake knew how much you meant to Cameron and what a great person you are. He heard it from me, as well as from Cameron. Even though you never became good friends, you now feel close to him in his death, hearing all about him from Cameron. And he knew how important you are to Cameron. It wasn’t 180 missed opportunities, instead it was 180 days of distant friendship, both incredibly important to each other and to Cameron.”

I love our distant friendship and how it has evolved. I love you, Jake

by Darian Clogston

Jake will be missed by so many! We can’t bring him back, but we can live our lives even bigger than anything we’ve ever planned before.

Love, gratitude and blessings

~Susan

 

 



Happy Father’s Day, Lake 22 and Cancer

My friend wanted to go hiking today, since both of our dads died 17 years ago and neither of us would be celebrating Father’s Day. George, the tumor on my chest (remember, we named him), went away and will be remembered by the scar tissue left behind. I’m working on it with my lotions, potions and magic (or prayer if that’s what you call it). Soon it will only be a memory.

This week, I’ve been having a lot of pain from a tumor on the bottom of my left foot, which felt like it was traveling up my leg. I’ve had both of them before, but for whatever reason, they must be afraid they’re going to miss out on something and have come back a few times. Last week I applied blood root black salve to both of them. The one on my foot reacted, but barely. I applied it again the next day. It definitely hurt more!  On Wednesday, the pain was so intense, I was pale and sweaty and didn’t know if I was going to puke or pass out. The pain was bearable without my shoes on, so I ended up standing and working 7 hours in my socks.  I’ve been making a concoction of DMSO, Magnesium oil and Lugol’s iodine and putting it on the recent scars several times daily. I also put it on the spot on my leg that didn’t react. It started burning immediately. Yesterday, I decided to reapply black salve. I felt it reacting – tingling,  as I was trying to go to sleep. I used Emotional Freedom Technique tapping and the pain resided within a couple minutes. I was just as lucky when I woke up this morning, except it looked awful!

Left Foot Owie

I decided I would try the hike. My friend knew about my explant surgery in March and the current cancer situation, but he was willing to go slow and wait for me or even turn around if I needed to. Both owies were bandaged and I was ready to spend the day in the forest, talking about our dads, the things we want to do with our lives, the qualities of the significant others we dream about…you know, the little things.

Lake 22 is on the Mountain Loop Highway in Granite Falls, WA. It’s one of the few hikes I haven’t done on Mtn Loop. The trail reports looked like it would be easy enough for me, in my current condition. It was 2.7 miles to the lake, another 1.1 miles around the lake and 2.7 back to the car. I figured if the pain got bad, I could turn around and wait at the car. Since the trail around the lake comes back to the same trail, I could’ve waited while he walked around. He disagreed with my ideas. He would have gone back with me if I needed to. That’s one of the qualities.

I didn’t feel either owie. Once we got to the lake, we stopped on the bridge to take pictures. Immediately, both owies started throbbing. We started moving again and headed around the lake. As long as I kept going, I didn’t feel them. As soon as we started going back, I realized that going downhill escalated the pain. It sucked, but the smells, the trees, the birds, the cute little mountain rodents, the waterfalls and navigating the rocks, creeks and tree roots lining the trail, kept me distracted. The pain and swelling seem to still be increasing since we finished the hike. It was my first hike since October. I’m feeling it now. I am so excited I accomplished it!

I am so happy and grateful I was able to hike 6.5 miles, only having to stop to breathe once and I’m still awake, sharing my adventure with you! I hurt all over, but it was worth it!

 

 

.

I am so happy and grateful I was able to hike 6.5 miles, only having to stop to breathe once and I’m still awake, sharing my adventure with you! I hurt all over, but it was worth it!

Love, gratitude and blessings

~Susan



Celebration With Tears

image Continue reading