Trust in the Lord with all your heart

and lean not on your own understanding;

in all your ways submit to him,

and he will make your paths straight.

Proverbs 3: 5-6


This past week we’ve had some heavy decisions to make as we prepare for next Wednesday’s visit to Duke. The cancer team is suggesting that I try radiation with a radiation oncologist who specializes in sarcomas. We’ve been researching this treatment modality. I’m not sure if I want to do this or not. Tough decision! Fatigue seems to be the most common side effect. Just how much more fatigued can I get?

We’ve also been preparing end-of-life documents for both of us. An appointment with a great attorney is helping us redo our wills of 30 years ago. (My mother has refused to be named Heather’s guardian any longer on the grounds that she’d be responsible for Tucker, too. He’s still eating cat food and joyfully emptying every salt and pepper shaker he can climb up to reach!) We wanted to let Mom off the hook as well as making sure the wills are decent and in order under the laws of North Carolina. Add this to an aching shingle head, a visit to the Cremation Society, Verizon changing our email over to AOL, a family crisis or two, picking up my Bible and finding it full of ants and the death of Terry’s beloved old push mower, you have one “perfect storm” of a fried brain!

Perhaps you can see why I’ve been struggling with what one of my favorite bloggers, Jill Badonsky, a creativity coach, calls a bad case of “flaccid focus muscles!” Kinda like a cat on a hot tin roof, my brain has been weakly flitting from one thing to another. Living in the present moment is not easy when your focus muscle is flaccid! Flaccid focus muscles enhance anxiety, pain, indecisiveness, a short fuse and many other undesirable side effects. On Thursday night my focus muscles snapped like a rotten rubber band, but I’m beginning to come around again! I’m trying to remember to breathe and to think good thoughts! I’ll leave you tonight with another of Jill’s quotes:

“Spirituality and creativity

require a love affair with the present moment.”


  1. Mary
    Jun 4, 2017

    Sending much, much love and heartfelt prayers for your “perfect storm” to cease. You forever amaze me how you can dress up almost anything and put a positive spin on things! The quote is wonderful. Love you lots, sweet friend.

  2. Sarah Phelps
    Jun 4, 2017

    Steve and I are with you every step of the way (as much as we can be at such a distance!), sending all good thoughts your way and wishing we could see you and give you gentle hugs. What ever you decide will be the best decision. Much, much love to you and Terry.

  3. Judy Lee
    Jun 4, 2017

    Oh, dear Donna what a week. You are the strongest lady I have ever had the pleasure to know and love. The cloudy and stormy weather will be clearer for you. Please know many have wrapped you in their arms with warm loving hugs. Every time I teach, I share your wonderful phrase. “To be healthy you need 12 hugs a day. You get them from family, friends and children. Puppy dog kisses and kitty cat snuggles are all considered hugs in my book”.
    Thank you for your endless words of wisdom for all of us. Love and hugs.

  4. Mary Lou
    Jun 4, 2017

    Oh my dear friend, bless you! It does indeed sound like a week of overload! I thought the shingles were a bit much & then so much more to deal with…
    Know that my prayers are surrounding you for strength & for wise discernment and peace …
    Sending a big hug & much love ❤️
    Mary Lou

  5. Pat Churchman
    Jun 4, 2017

    Your letters leave me feeling like Moggie, Charles’ sister who raised five children at the home place. I can see her sitting on the step with her head in her hand saying, “I can’t stand it.I just can’t stand it,” when loud wails were erupting from some child or another. It’s just all too much to do, to take in, to figure out. Getting your affairs in order will give you peace of mind anyway. It was so good to see Terry. Wish you could have come. Hope you get your trip to Niagara Falls. To my mind I keep thinking why don’t they do that targeted stuff that just takes out the cancer cells? I guess it’s more involved than that.But you do know you’re in everybody’s prayers.
    Much love,

  6. Harriet Smith
    Jun 4, 2017

    Oh, Donna, you are once again a master at showing us how to handle adversity. I admit this week must have been a 10 on the adversity scales. Sending hugs and lots of prayers.

  7. Robert Morris
    Jun 4, 2017

    Sending you lots of love from Chicago this weekend ! I just sent up a tried and true Presbyterian prayer for you and your family. Keep your Spirit strong!
    Lots of love

  8. Carol Morling
    Jun 4, 2017

    I think Jill’s words say it best. But, my goodness, your plate, that is forever overflowing, seems to have become a tumultuous waterfall! I pray you can gather all your wits, together, as yet another medical decision has shoved it’s way to the front of your brains. Know you are loved , Terry & Donna, Carol

  9. Gerrit McDaniel
    Jun 4, 2017

    I wish you were not planted in so many changleing opportunities to Bloom Where You Are Planted but since you are know that you continue to bloom

  10. Paula McNichols
    Jun 4, 2017

    Your inner strength is amazing. Our prayers are with all of you.

  11. Ann Held
    Jun 4, 2017

    May the God of amazing strenght and grace, give you and Terry peace and clarity of mind and spirit. All my love, Ann

  12. Carol Fields Fleenor
    Jun 7, 2017

    Oh My! This is a beautiful verse to hang on to. We are praying the shingles will be gone soon as well as some other issues. Decisions are definitely difficult for all of us but this is a “Huge Biggie!” Praying God will grant you wisdom. Happy Anniversary to you two. Sending love & prayers. ❤️

  13. Jean McDonald-Walker
    Jun 7, 2017

    As always, prayers are with you. My challenges right now seem so minor compared to yours. God be with you in every breath, sigh, tear, ache, and pain, discouraging moment and any smile or happy time that comes along!

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