8 July 2018

Why Misery Ridge isn’t all that miserable

Yesterday I hiked up to Misery Ridge and sat for a while, doing absolutely nothing. Well, except for munching fistfuls of nuts, and crunching on fruit, and slugging back cool, refreshing water.

 

All photos: Marlys

 

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17 June 2018

Celebrating life … while the patient is still alive

An email arrived recently from a friend — her grandfather died, and a week and a half later, her grandmother was diagnosed with late stage cancer.

“My grandma went through such a long, rough time being a caregiver for my grandpa,” wrote this young woman, “… and now this.”

 

Photo by Jake Thacker on Unsplash

 

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10 June 2018

Alphabet list of cancer caregiver tips

Being a caregiver was one of the most challenging and sweetest roles I’ve ever held. The challenging part was in the beginning, when terminal cancer was dropped on us from a high-flying bomber we didn’t see coming.

A year later, after Gary finally admitted his feelings of failure as a man, we sorted things out, determined to live more fully, found ways to give back, and made more fun and memories. That was the thunderous, sweet, majestic part.

If given the assignment to share tips from my cancer caregiving years, and if the assignment required an alphabetized list …

 

Photo: Pixabay

 

… it would look something like this:

 

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28 May 2018

Crew, posse, network? Do you have one?

Ralph Waldo Emerson said this:

No member of a crew is praised for the rugged individuality of his rowing.

That’s because a crew needs to be in synch; to pull together at equal strength. Connected. Coordinated.

 

Photo by Quino Al on Unsplash

 

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8 April 2018

10 practices of lucky people

According to Mark Banschick, MD, my 15-year-old grandson and I had a lucky week.

 

Photo by Irene Dávila on Unsplash

 

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25 March 2018

Meet Marni, world changer

When Tyler Henderson was diagnosed with brain cancer, Marni brought their two sons home for online schooling so they could spend as much time together as a family while they still had the hours, the weeks, the months.

Turns out, they only had fifteen more months together. Which wasn’t nearly enough time.

 

Tyler and Marni

 

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18 March 2018

11 habits of successful people

Michael Jordan, arguably the greatest basketball player ever to fly the planet, had this to say about success:

I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. Twenty-six times, I’ve been trusted to take the game-winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again. That is why I succeed.

 


Photo: sneakerbardetroit.com

 

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25 February 2018

Meet Katie, world changer

When Katie Strumpf was diagnosed with leukemia, there were no online resources or publications to offer guidance to a 10-year-old kid dealing with cancer. She endured chemo, spinal taps, and bone marrow aspirations.

While still going through treatment, Katie told her mom that someday she would write a book for children with cancer, offering encouragement and practical advice from someone who’s put up with doctors and medications and hair loss.

 

Katie Strumpf-Rackley

 

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28 January 2018

Hospice care: 4 myths and 4 awesome things you may not know

We were at my husband’s final oncology consultation—the one where he said, No more chemoat which point the oncologist said he’d like to make a referral to hospice. I was incredulous. Seriously? Does Gary look like he’s on his last legs?! 

“Up until this point,” the oncologist said to my husband, “all the care has been focused on you.” He pointed at me: “But who’s taking care of her?” My eyes welled up. I’d never considered that thought.

 

Photo by Conner Baker on Unsplash

 

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24 January 2018

9 living-well benefits of knitting

You’ll find me with my knitting posse most Monday evenings at Barnes & Noble. Back when my husband, Gary, was fighting cancer, they were part of my cancer caregiver support network. And now in widowhood, they’ve got my back.

My fellow knitters didn’t sign up for either of these extra assignments. But by virtue of showing up every Monday and bringing their exquisite, fuzzy projects and sharing their stories and asking about my week, they’re a significant addition to my support system.

 

 

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About Me

Hello, my name is Marlys Johnson. I’m a cancer widow, author, speaker and blogger. I love getting outdoors; would rather lace up hiking boots than go shopping. I have a passion for repurposing old junk into cool new stuff. And an even greater passion for showing people how to navigate life’s challenges. Tenaciously. And with heart wide open.

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