I will be taking a blog break until Tuesday.  My dear cousin Pam lost her battle with cancer on January 2.  A mere 30 days after Tony died.  She was an amazing woman, and way to young to leave this earth at the young age of 56.


She was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 2000 and enjoyed eight years of remission before in 2008, the cancer had spread to her bones.  She was only 50 years old at the time and filled a lifetime of experiences in the last six years of her life – ride in a helicopter, taste sake, attend a political rally.  Mind you, this woman didn’t just start to live life when she thought she didn’t have much time.  She married her college sweet heart Weare, they traveled extensively before having two children, both of whom she got to see get married and she got to meet her first grandchild.

One of my fondest memories of Pam was when she and Weare were traveling across the country with back packs, and had arranged it in their schedule to stop at our house to shower and spend the night.  I was probably 11 or 12 at the time, so Pam would have been 21 or 22.  Maybe we were both older, I don’t remember now.  All I remember is they walked into our house and Pam commented that she hadn’t had a shower in 3 days and I remember thinking “how fucking cool is that?!”  (okay, maybe I didn’t swear back then, but you get the idea!).  Here was a woman who was traveling across the country with her then boyfriend AND she didn’t have to take a shower every day!

My Mom and I are flying to Chesapeake Virginia tomorrow morning and will be coming back Monday afternoon.  Skippy, I wish I was closer and had more time to visit, but I promise I will some day!

I am not going to lie, as soon as I heard that Pam went into hospice, I balled my eyes out.  Not just for Pam but losing Tony so soon before, just the word hospice threw me right back to when we brought Tony home.  Sadly, Tony and Pam never met in real life, but I have no doubt that they are having a great time together – I know Tony would welcome her with open arms because he knew how much I loved her.

Pam’s Mom, my Aunt Cele, who is my godmother, at 5:00 p.m. every day gets herself a glass of white wine/whiskey rocks/whatever and toasts to a “Brand New Party!”

PicMonkey Collage

I know that this weekend will be a mix of tears and laughter, and hopefully by the end of the weekend, more laughter and memories are made.

Hug the ones you love.  Every day.  You never know when it’s the last time you’ll get that chance.

Every day is a chance to have a Brand New Party and I hope you all take full advantage of the gift you are given.  I know going forward I surely will.