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A Call to Arms

As I mentioned in the post sharing my mom’s cancer diagnosis, the doctors were going to try something called a bland embolism. They injected chemo in to the tumor in her liver with the hopes that it would shrink the mass.

It unfortunately didn’t work out how we were all hoping and praying.

The tumors are still there, and more have shown up in the meantime. We saw a picture of the tumor after her second CT scan, and it looks just like a butt. A big ole ass right there in her liver. Appropriate given how we feel about that stupid tumor.

The specialists at her hospital meet weekly, and they will be discussing her case again next week. She also meets with her oncologist a few days before Christmas. We’re not giving up, and are willing to look at alternative options as well as treatments from Western medicine. We also crank up the prayers, good thoughts, and a positive outlook. A fighting spirit is so huge when facing that douche known as cancer, and few words strike more fear in the heart of many than “Pissed Off Norwegians“.

Late last week, my aunt let us know that my grandma was in the hospital with pneumonia and an infection of her blood. Even with heavy-duty antibiotics, her white blood count was almost zero. Grandma was a 92-year-old former farm girl, whom even later in life considered getting up past 3:30 am for lazy people. She and my grandpa had been married for over 60 years when he passed, and they had raised two daughters (my mom and aunt), and loved their grandkids and great grandsons.

We drove to the hospital on Saturday to make sure we were able to say our goodbyes and let her know that she was loved and cared for. She hadn’t been conscious for more than 15 minutes in the last 48 hours, but when my mom held her hand, and we told her we loved her, she said “I love you too” and to my mom “Barb, it will be alright”. Fuck. Now I’m crying. Hold please.

Grandma passed on her own terms yesterday morning, and is dancing to big band music with my grandpa. Up in heaven, there are no snotty granddaughters to make fun of their love of Lawrence Welk.





As to the title of my post, I’m sharing our family’s ordeal in the hopes to encourage others to take up arms…and hug those that you love. We are lucky that there has been love for those around us, and no drama/trauma that have left us foreign to each other. That being said, I know that all too often in families and friendships, there are moments that cause hurt feelings and cracks in relationships. Left to fester, the cracks often widen and the divide seems too large, so hard to repair. It is usually easier to continue to be angry, or hurt, rather than put in the work it takes to fix what caused the rift in the first place. I understand that there are events that can happen to people, that are unforgivable and inexcusable. That is not what I am talking about, and my heart hurts for those who have experienced such wrongs.

We all have people in our lives that irk us, or have done something that makes us roll our eyes and discount them from our day-to-day. Oftentimes, if you think about it, you may not remember just exactly what it was that started everything. Well my friends, life is short. And precious, and should be enjoyed. If there are people in your life right now that could use a call to arms – as in a hug from you and maybe some grace and forgiveness – please call them. Or email. Or text. Or show up in person if possible. Make repairs to the damage and fractions, and use your energy to make new memories.



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27 comments on “A Call to Arms”

  1. I needed to read this today; thanks. My husband’s uncle died very suddenly and unexpectedly on Tuesday and we were all very close. My most recent round of fertility treatment didn’t work, and I ended up catching pinkeye from someone. It’s been a super crappy December and a hard 2016 in general. Thanks for the reminder that it’s worth fighting anyway.

  2. I’m so sorry to read about your Grandma – I’m sure she’s dancing up a storm with your Grandpa right about now. As we’ve lost a few people in our family over the past few years, I’ve told our son that what’s happening is that our family members are leaving us to go join the family we have in heaven – so we’re all with family, whether it’s here or heaven. It’s comforting for him to know that the person who passed has someone to go to. Hugs xxx

  3. A beautiful reminder. Thank you. <3