Tag: Cancer

The Last Time

You never know when it will be the last time.

The last hug, the last kiss, the last time holding someone’s hand, the last hello or the last good-bye, we just never know when it’s happening, but once we realize it did, we go back to that moment often.

I’ve gone back to the “last time” many times this week.

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Kim Sorrelle – Cry Until You Laugh

Kim Sorrelle is the director of a humanitarian organization, popular speaker, and the author of two books. Her first book, Cry Until You Laugh, is about her and her husband’s battle with cancer after being diagnosed just four months a part. Her second book, Love Is, chronicles her year long quest to figure out the true meaning of love, a sometimes funny, sometimes scary, always enlightening journey that led to life-changing discoveries found mostly on the streets of Haiti.

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A Cause for Pause

Yesterday, my sister-in-law, Cheryl Mankel passed away after a long battle with cancer.  She was only 72.

We arrived back in Pennsylvania on May 6th.  Our original plan was to be here until July 5th and then we’d head west to Colorado so that I could conduct podcast interviews at the BFA Nationals like I did last year.

We’d be staying in several family members yards and driveways between Berks and Perry County.  Our first stop would be at Cheryl’s house until May 20th.  She had been battling cancer for several years and we didn’t know how much time she had left.  We had spoken to her several times during the week leading up to our arrival and were looking forward to spending time with her.

She had treatment scheduled for the day that we were arriving and when she went in, she found out that she would also need a blood transfusion.  When we arrived at her house around 5:30 in the evening, she was back home from her treatment and already in bed for the night.  Completely wiped out from the process that took place earlier in the day.

I can’t necessarily speak for Sandy, but when I first saw her, I was shocked.  She had looked like she had aged ten years in the four months since I had last seen her.  Fortunately, I was able to see her in December when I had to come back to Pennsylvania to take care of some business.  During that visit Cheryl told me that if anything ever happened to me, she’d take care of Sandy.

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This Weekend I Rocked Lititz, the Swamp, and the Meadow!

After that last VIP thing of the night, I went out for my last potty break and daddy and I strolled around the campus for a little bit again.  We saw a crowd of people and a lady said, “There’s Youk! He’s gonna be famous!”  Apparently, mommy and daddy had told her and her husband that I was writing my children’s book, so they were excited to meet me.  I can’t blame them, just about everyone is excited to meet me.  A bunch of other people in that group started petting me too.  It was pretty awesome.

Then we started walking back to the house on wheels and saw Justin!  I was so excited to see him and of course he was excited to see me too!  He started petting me and telling me how soft I was.  If he stopped, I would start barking a little and then he’d keep petting me.  It didn’t take long to train him because he’s a smart human.

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We Finally Made it to Aunt Cheryl’s House!

It also makes me sad sometimes too though.  I know that Aunt Cheryl is in a lot of pain.  I hate that cancer thing that she has and I wish that I could take all of her pain away for her.  Some days she sleeps even more than I do, so that’s a lot.  But even though she’s in a lot of pain, she is still always looking out for everyone else.  Like she bought a bunch of bacon for me but wasn’t able to have it cooked up for me by the time that we got here.  So, she made sure that mommy cooked that bacon once we got here.  She also kept reminding mommy that daddy was running low on cereal and that she needed to get some the next time that she went to the store.  Isn’t that the epitome of a special person?  Someone who no matter what they’re going through is still thinking about taking care of others.  Aunt Cheryl is really special.

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