Five Months…

My Kolby. My sweet, sweet Kolby girl. It’s been five months since you left this world. Five months since a part of my heart left with you when you journeyed to the Rainbow Bridge. It feels like just yesterday that I brought you home. You entered into my life like a whirlwind. You brought your goofy smile and demanding bark into my house, and left paw prints all over place.

Losing you was one of the most devastating things that has ever happened to me. Making the decision to free you from pain was both easy and difficult. Easy because I saw that you were starting to suffer, and that is the last thing that I ever wanted for you. Difficult because I knew that choice would mean that I would never see you, hold you, or kiss you again. It hurt my heart and soul to lose you. You brought so much joy into my life even though you were only with me for a way too short period of time. Landon loved you so much. You helped him gain confidence. You two were partners in crime. Always side by side. The way you two played made me smile. You would definitely put Landon in his place, and he never seemed to mind.

I miss you so very much. I can’t put into words how much you mean to me. I say mean, because you will always be with me. I just wish I could hold you one more time. Even if only for a moment.I love you so much. You will forever be my pretty, pretty princess.

Kolby

2016, I am Done with You.

2016, what a year you have been. You have given me so many challenges. Emotional challenges that just keep on coming. I don’t even know where to begin. I’m a strong person, this is I know from the challenges of previous events in my life. But this year, well this year has been a clusterfuck for lack of a better word. (Although, I think clusterfuck sums it up nicely.) And being the interesting year that you’ve been, you even did me the courtesy of having the end of 2015 give me a preview of what you would bring.

What am I talking about? Well, first you had December 2015 surprise me with Kolby’s cancer diagnosis. Let me tell you, I was NOT prepared for that. At all. She seemed so healthy, that when the vet informed me her cancer was terminal, I was gobsmacked. How could this beautiful, loving dog that I was adopting into my life be riddled with cancer? Why? Hadn’t she had a hard enough life? Didn’t she deserve to live a long, happy life with me? Then, if that weren’t enough, my grandma who also had cancer fell out of bed and broke her arm and ended up in the hospital. Seriously?!

Then when you came rolling in on January 1st, you let us have a small bit of peace. Until my aunt became so ill that we were scared that we were going to lose her.  She pulled through, but you weren’t finished. Kolby’s cancer progressed so much, that her battle needed to be ended so she wouldn’t suffer. February 6th, 2016 was one of the hardest days of my life. I had to put my girl to sleep. By myself. Why? Because my grandma was in the hospital and my parents had left town that day to see her. So they didn’t get to say goodbye. At least my aunt, my best friend and her daughter were able to be with me because I don’t know what I would have done if I had to be all alone.

March came along and saw my grandmother’s condition worsen and her battle was lost as well. But you decided that wasn’t good enough, and had to make my uncle sick causing him to miss his mother’s funeral. And let’s just say his condition is serious without the added rushes to the hospital that you had him make. I’m just glad that you decided that he’d been through enough the last few years and spared him.

But you decided that you weren’t done with me. I, apparently, have not had enough. No. apparently, being given a break is not in the cards. No. You had to do me one more time. You decided that this year needed to be topped off big. You decided that it would okay to announce that my dad has prostate cancer. Low-grade, sure. But cancer nonetheless. Because cancer is going to be the ruling factor in my life. This disease that has wrecked havoc on the lives of so many, has become the one disease that just won’t quit affecting my loved ones.

2016, you are not over yet but I do hope you are over causing me grief. Because if you are not, you can be damn sure that I WILL own 2017 and will own it with a vengeance!

One Year Ago

One year ago today marks the passing of my Nonno, or grandfather for those who are not familiar with Italian. Even though it’s still the early hours of the morning, I can already foresee that this is going to be one long, emotional, memory-filled day.

I still can’t believe that he is gone. There are times when I really don’t. It’s almost like he’s just “out.” Not gone, just away. I often find myself thinking, “Nonno would like this, I should get it for him,” when I come across something that I know he’d like. Then I stop and remember. And it makes me so sad. Nonno and I didn’t have your average grandfather/granddaughter relationship. It was special. Cliche sounding as everyone says that about someone they love, but after living with the man and experiencing what I have with him, our relationship was something unique. I will be the first to admit, he was not an easy man to live with. The first five years were tense to say the least. I am not going to get into details as that is a whole other story, but I really didn’t like living with him at first.

Fast forward to the last ten years and things were dramatically different. We shared stories, laughs, tears, fear, heartache. So much has happened in my family and I am sad for the ones who didn’t or wouldn’t get to know the man who I did. Through all the ups and downs and medical emergencies with Nonno, I learned how to be a survivor. He was truly the epitome of the word. At least to me. Not many people I know, or many people in general can have nine (yes, NINE) heart attacks and actually survive them. Nonno did. He always did. I half expected him to survive his last time in the hospital. But around the time he went in, this feeling of dread hit and before I knew it, he was gone.

Part of me was happy that he passed as I knew that he was no longer in any pain, but for the most part I was angry and sad. I felt like more could have been done for him. And maybe I am right, but maybe not.
All I have now is my memories of him and the love that we had for each other. One of my favourite memories was when I finished my university courses in December 2011. I remember him asking me if I was going to school one day and I said no. I told him that I was finished and that I would be graduating. His face lit up in a huge smile and he hugged me and patted me on the back. He was so proud of me and I could really feel how much it meant to him that I had accomplished what I did. The look on his face is something that I will cherish forever.

My world became a darker place without him. I miss him so much.

Riposa in pace Nonno. Ti amo e mi manchi ogni giorno. Tu eri una parte enorme della mia vita e sarò sempre ti amo teneramente.