Monday, December 12, 2011
2 (of a disease) predicted to lead to death, esp. slowly; incurable : terminal cancer.
• [ attrib. ] suffering from or relating to such a disease : a hospice for terminal cases.
• [ attrib. ] (of a condition) forming the last stage of such a disease.
• informal extreme and usually beyond cure or alteration (used to emphasize the extent of something regarded as bad or unfortunate)
Tina M. sat in our studio, just a couple of weeks ago, and spoke frankly and emotionally about the end of her life and the plans shes making... the memories she's trying to create....and the things she'll miss...
Diagnosed, just a short 6 months ago with Stage 4 pancreatic cancer, she now counts days. Originally thought to be an infected gall bladder, which they removed... the nausea and vomiting persisted...leading to further testing, which found her pancreas and some of her abdomen filled with this ugly cancer.
Everyone around Tina is dealing differently with this diagnosis... some separate themselves and stay in the comfortable place of denial. Some have voiced concerns about, 'what will happen to them when she's gone', and most have rallied around her to support, pray for, physically help and mostly love her with wild abandon. Her only sister, Teresa feels a profound loss already as Tina moves closer to the end of her life, but, "we live in hope. Every day is a new day and we believe in the power of prayer."
Tina says, "My priorities have definitely shifted and my world has gotten 'very small' these days. When I'm alone, I do lots of planning... I'm cleaning and sorting things, designating things I want to go to certain people. I've organized my jewelry and recorded some books for my grandkids... and to surprise my family... I've left letters all over the house, hidden, for them to find someday when I'm gone."
She is surrounded by lots of extended family... a family that is extremely close and feels the end creep closer with each and every day. But a life of joy and love that will live on in all those who have come to know and love Tina. "I want to leave a legacy behind".... not in things, but the "legacy I've built my whole life."
Each of us could be given this diagnosis at any moment... would you be ready to accept it as bravely and with the grace that Tina has? Who have you surrrounded yourself with? Will those people be with you to the end? What will your legacy be?
Labels: bald woman, bald women, Be Bold Feel Beautiful, pancreatic cancer, Terri Shaver, The Oldham Project
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