“Grow old with me, the best is yet to be-” Well we were at the not so old stage looking forward to the best is yet to be life together stage, when cancer nixed the grow old with me part.
ABOUT ME – WHO I WAS- In a Nutshell
The life-story behind, Cancer Tested Courage and Faith
I graduated from college, went Skiing for a winter, and fell in love. In that order.
The ski-lodge buzzed with the anticipated arrival of ten Swiss Ski Instructors. I heard the warnings. “Stay away from the Swiss. They are notorious for love um and leave um.”
“Thanks, but I am not interested in the Swiss Ski Instructors or any other nationality instructor.”
And then he arrived. He wore his red ski instructor sweater, white turtleneck, and black stretch ski pants, and I did something absurd.
“See that Swiss Instructor, the one laughing and doing all talking, he is trouble, and I am going to marry him.”
My lunch partner looked at me funny and laughed. “That’s Werner, stay away from him, he is the notorious playboy.”
Somewhat embarrassed by my blurt, I laughed and changed the subject. I did not ask if he had rejected her.
I laughed again when a few days later, Werner, labeled the notorious Swiss playboy, asked me to have lunch with him. And then, I laughed again, when we fell in love. I laughed some more when the buzz around the lodge was, “Will he love her or leave her?”
And I laughed again and said, “Yes,” to his marriage proposal
His marriage proposal came with an added clause requesting a Switzerland wedding venue.
I Chose Saanen, Switzerland for my wedding venue
His request testified to the deeper integrity of this man.
“My lifestyle in the United States seems glamorous to many people, but in Switzerland my life is simple. I want you to see this other side if me, and if you are not happy with how I live in Switzerland, you can back out of the wedding.”
I fell in love with him all over again.
During the several months I lived in Switzerland, Swiss German became my make a lot of funny and embarrassing mistakes, make everyone laugh, second language.
I learned my husband-to -be was a serious mountain climber with over 100-routes to his credit. I hiked up and down Alps, learned to rappel, and refused to climb nose to rock-face several thousand feet up from safe ground below. I learned diplomacy coordinating our international wedding while involving two mothers living in different countries with different traditions.
The sun-shone on our wedding-day in Camelot
Symphonic church bells rang out across the valley and Alps echoed the joyful noise.
We thought we had forever. “Until death parts you,” had nothing to do with us. We were a happily ever after love story.
We raised and educated our two sons and welcomed a daughter-in-law,
We ran a business, hiked, played tennis, traveled to Switzerland, loved, and laughed, played music, skied, sailed, and had our ups and downs.
Sometimes we fought and disappointed each other. Love always won. Our 30-year happily ever after story thrived with hopes and dreams for the best is yet to be-
until the enemy, called cancer, arrived and laid siege on my husband’s life.
Life realities did not allow us to choose what burdens we must bear for each other in our marriage. We learned those life-lessons during our 3-year esophageal cancer journey. Cancer tested our courage and faith. Love grew deeper, and trust in God, our strength.
“The last of life – for which the first was made, our times were in His hands“
Diagnosis Terminal – the intimate gravity of knowing our gift of time together would be cut short. We chose to live exceedingly abundantly.
Before we faced that journey, we traveled one last time to Switzerland.
And planned one more wedding.
“Who says, A Whole I planned, youth shows but half.”
“Its time I asked my wife to dance.” He took me hand and wrapped his arm around me. Alone, we danced, the two of us. Autumn Leaves, the melody.
“See all, nor be afraid, trust God ”
Poem words by Robert Browning
Life-lessons, esophageal cancer, faith, courage, marriage, Trust, blessed, Grace, marriage, spouse, Joy, relationship, Love, wedding, God, Abundant living