July 1, 2021 - Happy July!
This is my second dual post on CaringBridge and ReneeKranking.com. Remember to visit my new site and Subscribe in order to receive notifications when I have a new post. As I mentioned, I will post on both sites for the month of July, as I am transitioning. HINT: CaringBridge does have limitations. With the new site, I can post more photos and will have more flexibility with media.
Strangely, July has become my month for big events. Not events that I have asked for, mind you. When I think back on July, there have been many milestones in my life.
For instance, Jamie and I officially started dating the July 4th weekend. That was way back in 1994. We also moved from Denver to Atlanta in July. That was in 2001. Little Mason man was conceived in July (yes, I know the date - heck I remember everything about it). We were at our cabin in Blue Ridge, Ga. I'll spare you the details, but when we were thinking of names for Mason, we wanted something meaningful. I couldn't get Jamie to bite on naming our little boy "Ridge". Smart man Jamie was. Mason can thank his daddy for that one.
Before cancer claimed my calendar, Julys also included many vacations out west. Over the years we spent our Julys in Napa, the Grand Canyon, Rocky Mountain National Park, Yellowstone, Glacier National Park, Mount Rushmore, and many others. July also included the baseball tour of the New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox. Mason touched the Green Monster. On that trip, we were with my brother and sweet sister-in-law. We made it to New Hampshire and Maine and ate our worth in lobstahs.
Below are random photo's from many July's...
July also is the month that we lost my Mother. She passed way 2 years ago this month. It seems like yesterday. But so much has happened since then.
July also is the month of mastectomies and craniotomies. 2 years ago, I thought I was embarking on a cancer battle that began with a mastectomy and actually had an end date, silly me. And, 1 year ago, I was celebrating my one year clean Pet Scan, when it was suggested that they look at my brain via MRI. That led to brain surgery.
I don't think I shared this photo before, but I think it is quite interesting. From right to left, it shows my brain before surgery (July 2020), the day after surgery (July 2020), and then one from October 2020. You can see the 3cm cancer tumor, then the spot where it was removed (black hole), and then how it has healed. It is amazing how are bodies respond to trauma and really do heal.
When I go for future brain MRI's, I'm always hoping for it to look like the scan on the far left. For now, it is obeying my wishes.
Back to big events in July...Yesterday, I had my routine Mayo visit with blood draws, doctor visit, and Hylecta infusion. It was uneventful. It was not a big event. The phlebotomist at Mayo make blood draws almost pleasant. They sure are skilled.
We have dear friends visiting from Atlanta for the July 4th holiday weekend. They are in route as I type. The month also includes a week in the North Ga. mountains as Mason and Jamie attend Boy Scout Camp. Thankfully, I will spend the week relaxing at our dear friends cabin in Mineral Bluff. No camping for this city gal! I need all the creature comforts, such as hot water, plumbing, and actual walls with doors. Luckily, my big brother has agreed to come and keep me company. He is already dreading the many board games that I will insist we play so that I can beat him. Scrabble is on the list! I can see him shudder as he reads this.
When we return back from North Ga, our dear friends from 30A are bringing their kids over for a visit. That will prove to be days of laughter and fun. I will squeeze in another routine visit to Mayo, as I'm due for my next visit and injection on the 21st. I have no major scans this month. My next brain MRI is scheduled in early August. Until then, we wait.
So, we have a lot planned for July. If a big event does occur in July, I truly hope it is on the fun side of life! As always, I will keep you posted. I hope everyone has a safe and fun July 4th. Hug your loved ones!