“In any given moment we have two options: to step forward into growth or to step back into safety.”
Last week we packed up most of our belongings. This week we headed out to Estes Park, CO to get spontaneously married alongside our families, some great friends, and our dog, Leonidas. Next week we will be driving back to Cleveland to continue killing this cancer that has infected my body. To say the least, life has been a roller coaster.
Now let’s start by saying we have been engaged for a year and a half. We have been planning a July wedding in Ohio since January. Last month, on February 22 (the day before my 28th birthday) we received a call that shattered my heart…again. The call that said my cancer came back and it is in one of my bones. So we all started to jump to conclusions, as most people would. Now at age 28 most people would assume chemotherapy was the only option, as did I. All I could think of was losing my hair… I didn’t want to be bald at my own wedding.
So we plan to pack up our life to fit into our Honda CRV and move back to Cleveland, OH to be closer to family. In this planning, our families reminded us that we wanted to get married in Colorado, and now more than ever we should do it! So about two weeks ago we started to plan this spontaneous ceremony in The Rocky Mountains. It was a very intimate wedding with about 10 people total out in Mother Nature. We got married in Rocky Mountain National Park on March 27, 2018 and the sun was shining all day long!
Yesterday, the day after the most perfect wedding in all of Colorado, we received the call confirming that chemo is NOT the best option for the cancer that I have. Now this is coming from the Tumor Board at Cleveland Clinic – they think that blocking the estrogen that feeds this disease is more aggressive than chemo. So now I will be doing ovarian suppression and taking drugs to stop my body from producing estrogen. The side effects of this approach are much better for my quality of life than those of chemo. I had attempted to mentally prepare myself for the horror of losing all of my hair and looking and feeling ill for six months. But there is no point in “preparing” yourself for something unknown. I have attempted to predict the future, which we all know is impossible.
My emotions and thoughts have been on a bumpy ride lately. Cody and I have made some big life decisions and that is the most thrilling part for me. To be so uncertain of the future is what helped us to make these wild decisions. We may not be happy with all of them, and that is fine. Right now, I am happy for our decision to move to Ohio, which led us to getting married in the Rockies, which now leads us back to Cleveland. And from there the path is unknown.
So we pack 75% of our belongings, rent a storage unit, scoot out to the mountains TO GET MARRIED, return to Denver for three days to complete the packing and cleaning.
We packed our lives into boxes, and we made a choice. To get rid of these things that distract us will help us find all that matters most. The things that bring us happiness. Life will not be glamorous on the road, and I assume the side effects won’t be all sunshine and flowers. But I am ready to take this path to search for my happiness, alongside my two favorite guys. We will share our adventure along the way and we will report back with where our choices landed us. I promise to do this if you promise to take a risk – do something that scares you and see where you land.
Happy Risk Taking,
SIDE NOTE : We will still be celebrating with our family and friends in Cleveland in July! Only now, we can get a little more wild than originally planned.
PHOTOS CRED: Jack Gould