To The Manor Retired (Almost There)

The Manor  Wow, has it really been six months since I have posted?     How time flies when life keeps throwing you curve balls.   Odd numbered years have traditionally been pretty good ones for myself and my family.   This year, 2013, this "annus horribilis"  as Queen Elizabeth would say,  has brought my family to it's knees.   When New Years Day dawned,   I thought I could see the light at the end of the tunnel.  Focusing on August 1st,  I happily thought about my spouse's graduation when he received his BSN.   Last fall, we had many lively conversations on what we had planned for post-nursing degree.   Re-viving our restoring of the Manor, landscaping and some much needed R&R, all were constantly on my mind.

Life it seems, had other plans.   With the loss of our dearly beloved Jahber in March (a better greyhound there will never be),   a downward spiral began.   Increasing stress with dealing with work and schoolwork, my spouse began having some issues that we attributed to the very heavy load he was carrying.  My workplace, also, continued to beget ever increasing workloads and unhappiness.   Depression began to rear its ugly head again, my happy medicine was losing its potency. 

June brought a diagnosis of Stage III colon cancer for my spouse, with subsequent surgery following in July.    Two weeks until the last day of class and the end of his long seven years of school,  he had a soft-ball sized tumor and eighteen inches of colon removed.  Six of fourteen lymph nodes proved positive for cancer cells.    You know the old dodge, "When the going gets tough..."   For this family, it became "When the going gets tough, the tough dig in and hold on."   My entire focus was helping my spouse to accomplish his graduation.  Everything was subject to the consideration of how it affected schoolwork.  We kept visitors at bay, calm and quiet was the order of the days.   Whatever it took, we did, I did.

On August 9th, my husband received his Bachelor's in Nursing from Clemson University.  Such a proud happy day!!!  I don't know how he did it, most people couldn't conceive of what he went through these last six or seven years, working and going to school fulltime.    I think he was a little shell-shocked the first couple of weeks following the arrival of the sheepskin.  To watch TV, read a book,  go out to the garden center....without guilt, without the sense of feeling time was being wasted when there was a paper to write or a project to work on, this was almost an alien concept for him.  

And now we are almost halfway through twelve chemo treatments,   My focus has switched to doing whatever I have to do to help him get through this.  If it is God's will,  we will make it through to January when the last of the treatments are scheduled and by spring, I hope we will be able to move on with our dreams.   It has not been without cost,  I have started going for counseling, my internist has switched me to different meds, hoping to put the darkness at bay again.  Painting has become my refuge, my solace and I am so thankful to have a place to escape to.  My "hawk's nest" at the top of the Manor, my art studio.

Thursday, I resigned my position as an admin. rep.  The work environment had become so hostile, so toxic, because of one co-worker, who because of her increasing resentment of having to work, had become intolerable in her daily efforts to make my life as miserable as her life evidently is.   Daily dread of what would happen at work was poisoning my soul.   This was not a knee-jerk reaction.  The spouse had been trying to get me to resign for the last year or so.  But last Wednesday,  I had had enough.  I won't bore you with the details.  Management has done admirably in trying to talk me out of resigning.  But they can offer no resolutions, no solutions.  So October 31,  I will be released from a very bad situation. 

So now, I will try to re-invent myself again.  Try to rise back above the line.  I have let so many things go over the last six months.  Miss Minnie's life is still a mystery, attention must be paid.  I will focus on painting .   I will spend more time with my family, especially my Mom who turned 80 this year.  I will get my house back in order and like the Phoenix, rise from the ashes.

sunfeathers "life is full of possibilities"

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