We decided to get away from it all.

ALL of it.

We went to camelback for three days. The first day was the indoor water park.

The kids swam and I read a great book. Girls, get this book. Seriously.

An old friend from college happened to be there, and i haven’t seen her since I graduated Cortland. She found me and we had the best hug.

But yesterday?

Yesterday was amazing.

We woke up and went to the buffet breakfast. I came back from getting my egg omelette to find quinn with a huge donut, eggs with ketchup… and an overflowing bowl of TRIX cereal. A cereal chemical shitstorm full of roundup. He looked at me and said, “Mom! I cant remember when I last had TRIX!”

I can.

November 17, 2016.

I decided we would do everything we could to live the life BC, before cancer, so he I let him eat whatever he wanted. He had three spoonfuls and was done. It was too sweet.

We headed off to the mountain adventures, and I put band aids and protective covering over the port. The first thing we did was the zip line. Rob and quinn went first, then the girls, then I was left alone.

I told the young kids working there that I was given weeks or months to live two years ago, was in the hospital a week and half ago getting a port, in the midst of chemo, and look at me now.

(I told that to everyone I met at every ride, and their eyes always opened in shock. I showed them my port, and told them their is always hope, and God has me, no matter what.)

Then the man counted down and I didnt jump.

Sometimes it takes two countdowns to take a leap of faith and fly.

I taped it to show my parents what I did, and when I posted it, people started commenting on an orb that followed me and was jumping around. Some say orbs in pictures are actually angels in motion. Well, mine was all over the place, either freaking out at what I was doing or cheering me on.

Then we went to a mountain coaster that was so fast, even with its breaks on. You ride it by yourself, and hearing my kids screaming as they flew down the rails deep in the mountains was scary and amazing. I taped that one too, and apparently I giggle when I’m terrified.

Next we did the alpine slide, and rob flew down the mountain. He said he remembered a slide like that at action park, and he totally relived his childhood.

We headed off to the outdoor water park when we finished, and on the trolley we sat by a woman who grew up in Valley Stream and another woman who works at Memorial Junior High, where I attended school. Valley Stream always finds me.

The outdoor water park was great, although chilly at 74 degrees. The kids all went on rides and had a blast. As we left, we all went on a ski chair lift to the top of the mountain. It was breathtaking, and we said maybe we’ll come back in the winter, depending on what happens with me.

We left at 3:30 to head back to mountain adventures for the treetop rope course. They gave us harnesses with two big safety clips and a zip line pulley attached. We went on a practice course and learned all the safety rules.

When it was my turn to try a rope swing like Tarzan, I fell and landed on the metal rope, straddlewise. I almost quit, but I knew I had to do it.

We went into the woods and began. Maddie lead the way, then Morgan, me, Quinn and rob. Pretty soon maddie and Morgan were ahead of us, with Maddie helping Morgan. She told us she taught Morgan her mantra…”Oh shit, oh shit, oh shit.”

I totally understood and said only when hanging from ropes a hundred feet in the air can you say that, although I prefer, “Jesus help me…”

Rob and I ended up tag teaming with Quinn. I would go first to show him and teach him the best way to do it, and if mommy the chicken could do it, so could he. Then I would wait high up on the platform and rob would help hook him to the wires. We would both give him tips and encourage him, with an occasional cheer from far away from his sisters. He would make it across the obstacle, I helped him hook both big hooks to the red safety wire while he hugged the tree, and we would wait on the platform for rob.

We hugged a lot of trees yesterday.

At one zip line I had a momma deer and her dawn five feet under me watching me. It was amazing, and deer were everywhere.

After three and a half hours, we finished. It was truly the best memory, with all of us working together as a team to complete the obstacle and stay alive.

Not a big deal really, since we do it every day with the cancer.

We had no phones, and were totally focused on helping each other. Every school should do this with different levels for each grade at the beginning of the year. Some kind of team building activity where everyone discovers how important we all are to each other, and how we can all help each other.

Not having phones was amazing. I need a locker at home. I need to come home, put the phone in a locker, and not take it out until dinner is done and I still have an hour before bed.

It was freeing.

When we finished the course, we walked down the mountain and passed more deer. I thanked then for their antlers that are in my Chinese herbs.

When we got to dinner, I turned on my phone and had about fifty Facebook notifications, private messages, and a whole bunch of texts. If I didn’t get back to you yet, I will.

Maybe by tomorrow.

Checkout is at eleven today, but we’ve decided to pack the car and then just stay here all day. The kids can use the water park, we can eat dinner here, and then head home tonight.

Life is for living.

I’ve got Quinns birthday tomorrow, then the big appointment with my oncologist and then chemo, where we decide if we go for the heavier dosage.

I’m sure she will think I’m crazy when I tell her what I did here, and then say…”So, yeah, I think your tolerating this dosage just fine and can try the heavier one.”

We will see.

But today, I watch my kids all have fun and stick together, while holding robs hand.

Not a bad way to spend a day.

We needed this.

May today bring more memories, joy and healing to us all.

In Jesus’s, name, amen.



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