Wednesday’s Visit to Cancer Center

Wednesday’s visit to the Duke Cancer Center was a multiple cups of tea kind of day! Not surprisingly, we have another new path to follow. The tumors in my lungs have blossomed like dandelions on a warm spring day! You can dig the stinkers out but they keep coming back!

We have no more available interventions, so there will be no more labs or scans. After much discussion with the oncologist and his team, we have chosen admission to Early Hospice. This doesn’t mean I expect to die anytime soon. It does mean the hospice team will be able to get to know me and my family while I’m “weller.” Then the hospice team will be better able to assess my needs as time goes on. It means I can be assured of the best quality of life possible in the coming months and years. It means that many people admitted to hospice early actually live longer. It means that there is more support on hand for me, my family and friends along the way. Just how many people get to hear their health care team say, “You can do anything you want to do! Have a glass of chardonnay!”

“At times like this we need our friends

to remind us that crushed grapes

can produce tasty wine.”

Henri Nouwen

Tomorrow we are starting to take our bucket lists more seriously. We are going to Asheville NC for the weekend to visit the Southern Highlands Craft Guild’s huge summer festival. I’ve been a member since 1986 and this will be the first show I’ve been able to attend. There are plans to attend a Mountain Music gathering on the plaza in downtown on Saturday night. To finish off the weekend we’ll stop in Charlotte on Sunday to help Shawn celebrate his 48th birthday!

I’ll write more next week and share with you as this transition unfolds.


“The Lord has promised good to me,

His word my hope secures;

He will my shield and portion be

As long as life endures”

John Newton, Amazing Grace


  1. thom bower
    Jul 21, 2017

    I’ve walked along many people in hospice. You, dear Donna, are the first I’ve known to take early entry. Henceforth my beloved dandelions will call forth prayers for you.

  2. Sarah Phelps
    Jul 21, 2017

    Dear Donna.
    My heart aches. Literally. You are so optimistic and cheerful, you bring hope and light to everyone who knows you. I will think of you with every glass of wine I drink ( and that’s a LOT!)
    Much love, Sarah

  3. Shannon
    Jul 21, 2017

    Oh Donna, what a strong spirit you have and what a blessing you are to those who know you. Harold and I are so grateful to call you and Terry – friends. May your bucket list be long and may you complete it in style.

  4. Mary Lou
    Jul 21, 2017

    Blessings my dear and beautiful friend. As you have taught us to live with adversity… you wil teach us to die with vitality & grace So glad to walk this journey with you & learn from you along the way. I love you!

  5. Camilla Cabaniss
    Jul 21, 2017

    You go, girl! ❤️❤️

  6. Betsy caul
    Jul 21, 2017

    You and the family are in our thoughts and prayers. Enjoy your weekend.

  7. Pat Churchman
    Jul 21, 2017

    The Capcha code got me the first time, so I’ll try again…to say that you are very brave and accepting and I’m so glad you’re going to be able to get to the fun things this birthday, including celebrating with Shawn on his birthday.
    Much love and prayers with you always,

  8. Melissa Henderson
    Jul 21, 2017

    Donna, we continue to pray for you. Hugs.

  9. Harriet G Smith
    Jul 21, 2017

    I will toast to your next part of this journey with that glass of chardonnay! Here is to you, sweet lady. We will have you near our heart and in our prayers. I love the getting serious about the bucket list!

  10. Peggy Roberson
    Jul 21, 2017

    Your sharing your journey is a blessing to those who read it. Thank you for being so generous. Mary Lou and I talked admiringly about you at lunch today. Your friendship has enriched our lives. May each day be a blessing to you and Terry. Many prayers on your behalf.

  11. Linda R. Koogler
    Jul 21, 2017

    Hugs and prayers Donna to you and all your family. Early hospice care is wonderful as it allows you to live your life as fully as possible. Best wishes with fulfilling your bucket list girl!!! God is good and faithful.
    Linda Koogler

  12. Kitty
    Jul 21, 2017


    Welcome to the wonderful world of hospice. You bring a great attitude and you will find that “our kind” does to. Thank you for the update and the beautiful note. I want to make wine with you.

    Keep on keeping on!

    All my love,


  13. Cindy Mitcchell
    Jul 21, 2017

    You are such a wise woman to go with early hospice. Enjoy your time in Asheville . Sounds like there will be lots of good music and treasures. As always my love and prayers to you and Terry.

  14. Mary Duncan Himelright
    Jul 21, 2017

    Prayers you enjoy this special weekend to the fullest. Love you dearly. Thank you for sharing.

  15. Brenda linkenhoker
    Jul 22, 2017

    Glad to hear you have a plan. Think of you all often. We have to have a Cowpasture River day. Prayers going your way

  16. Tamara Larson
    Jul 22, 2017

    May God grant you the strength and stamina to accomplish all that you have on that Bucket List, as I know it has to be a VERY LONG ONE!!! Enjoy every adventure and you complete them, one by one. And as always, I send my Love, Hugs, Prayers and Blessings to you and the family. Tam

  17. Louisa Painter
    Jul 26, 2017

    You are a wonderful example too all of us. We love your bucket list and hope you get to all of it. You are in our thoughts and prayers. We are having trouble getting our messages to post and hope this one gets through.
    Louisa and Bill

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