Pictures and postcards from vacation spread out across a table

Travel, Life is Short!

Last updated: October 2022

When I was diagnosed in November of 2014, I made 3 promises to myself and one of them was to travel as much as possible and see the world. When we are not faced with a terminal disease, we think we have all the time in the world and so I thought. I figured once my kids are grown my husband and I can travel and go visit the places we always wanted to go. But that all changed in November of 2014 when we got the news that I had stage 3B Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer.

So, we decided as long as I’m still breathing on this earth we were going to travel and see the world and that’s exactly what we are doing.

Cleared for travel after treatment

After chemo and radiation, I had to build up my strength and once I was cleared, we began to travel every chance we got. We have been to many places together and some I went with others, like my friends and some family members. Our first trip was a family trip to Costa Rica. It was July 2015 and we spend two weeks there with our children. I told my husband “just in case these treatments don’t work let's do one last family vacation but out of the county. I wanted my kids to remember me being happy and having fun.” So off we went, and we had the best time of our lives. In October 2015, I went with my mother-in-law and a group from her church to Jerusalem, to the Holy Land. Now that trip was amazing and so educational.

My husband and I have been to many places to make memories because we just never know. I’ve been NED and stable before, but I’ve also had progression within the last 7 years. Our lives are compacted so we do as much as we can and travel in such a short period of time. Our traveling adventure has been amazing, and we’ve made lots of precious memories that when it’s my time to go he’ll have those precious memories.

Enjoying life and its many adventures

Our traveling adventures have been to the Bahamas where we renew our vows for our 25th wedding anniversary with friends by our side. Jamaica where we went to celebrate my 30 years high school reunion, and Cabo San Lucas, Mexico where we went to celebrate my 50th birthday. Puerto Vallarta to celebrate our daughter’s birthday, and Loretto, Mexico to celebrate my husband’s 50th birthday. We’ve been to Florida several times; we’ve been to Tennessee 4 times because we love the state of Tennessee. We’ve gone to New York, Boston, Los Angeles, DC, and Dallas just to name a few. I recently went to Dubai with my friend Dianna and a group. I’ve been to so many places I can’t keep track, but that’s ok because I’m enjoying life and keeping the promise, I made to myself 7 years ago.

Don't let lung cancer stop you

Just because we are diagnosed with a terminal illness doesn’t mean we need to stop living. Go live, enjoy your life because you only get one, and for goodness sake travel. Talk to your doctor and don’t be afraid of the logistics. Airports have wheelchairs if you need one, I had to use them from time to time and it’s ok but go on that trip you always wanted to go to. Do you carry an oxygen tank? Ok, you can still travel with it. Don't let things like that stop you. You are still alive and breathing, right? Then go travel and see the place you always dreamed of, don’t wait until it’s too late.

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