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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. May every tear that falls be outnumbered with 10 smiles or laughs as you celebrate your grandma’s life.

    Sending prayers for your mom’s battle #cancersucksbigballs

  2. I am so sorry for your loss. Two of my grandparents passed during December, different years, and it being the season of family makes it both harder and easier. *hugs* Scary news about your mom. A close friend of mine is also battling cancer right now, first breast (removed) and then little spots on her liver. Along with conventional treatments she has been working hard to really rev up her immune system. One of the things she wanted from me was dandelion root (I live in the country/less chemicals). So I made her a dandelion root tincture and while that was infusing I made her a dandelion strawberry shrub.. a vinegar tonic drink. She really enjoyed it. So far she’s doing OK and its been a full year now.

  3. I’m so sorry for your family’s great loss, especially coming on the heels of so much other hardship. I’ll hug my little ones extra tonight and send good thoughts your way.

  4. Sending love, hugs, and many prayers.

  5. So much love to you and yours. Thank you for such a compassionate post x

  6. My condolences to you and your family on the loss of your grandmother! She sounds like an amazing woman who lived life to the fullest and left a proud legacy in her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. My heartfelt prayers for your mother! Your call to arms is a good reminder, especially as we close out 2016.

  7. I’m so sorry to hear that,sending you and your family prayers.

  8. Your love for your Grandma, bless her soul, and your family shines, sending prayers for your Mom and You and your Dad and all your family at this time dear one.

    Cherish, make sure you get answers to your questions while you can, family history and lore shared helps with sorrow, family coming together helps too.

    Prayers and hugs.


  9. You and your family are in my prayers, not just because of the holidays, but from one mom/daughter to another.