Hola amigos! Well, Mexico was just what the doctor ordered. We had perfect weather - in the mid 80's and sunny every day, we had a beautiful beach, a fun pool, and great company...what more can you ask for?! I met my Mom and Doug in Playa del Carmen on the afternoon of the 7th and later that night we were joined by my friends, Emily and Lindsay who flew in from Chicago. We all stayed until the 13th, and as always, vacation just flew by way too fast. I have had a lot of great trips lately but they were packed with plans and didn't leave much time for relaxation. This trip was nothing but relaxing and it was just perfect. We woke up around 7am, worked out, went to breakfast, laid out at the beach or pool all day, went to a nice dinner, maybe had a drink (or two or three!), then off to bed early so we could repeat it all the next day. I even got a little tan on this pale Irish skin! Thank you so much Mom & Doug for this incredible birthday gift!
A view of part of our gorgeous resort...
This was the view at the end of our hallway in the hotel...paradise!
We survived a wild afternoon of snorkeling in huge waves, guided by men that spoke no English, and avoiding a poor guy puking in our boat!
I couldn't believe the weather here in the mitten when we got home! It was beautiful - and has stayed beautiful. It sure made coming home from Mexico much easier. This past week and weekend, we have been outside as much as possible. Mike has been super busy with baseball try-outs and this weather has been perfect for it. We had a great St. Patty's Day spent with friends and a little family time too. This upcoming week is a super busy one - and a pretty special one too.
Aside from having a lot of great plans with different friends this week, an appointment with my plastic surgeon to prep for my next surgery, my two monthly injections, and a support group meeting...it's also my 30th birthday on Wednesday and Friday is not only Doug's birthday but it marks the big 1 year cancerversary! Then on Saturday, Mike has planned a bday party for me at one of the local watering holes. It's going to a busy and emotional week for me, I am sure!
My mom has always made birthdays a big deal in our family, but this one is definitely extra special - and I have a feeling each birthday from here on out will be a pretty big cause for celebration. Although a lot of my friends have had a tough time coming to grips with turning 30, I couldn't be happier. I am so grateful for every day, every month, and every year. I am grateful to be celebrating my 30th birthday this week and I pray I am able to celebrate many, many more. It reminds me of a quote shared with me by a friend...."Do not regret growing older. It is a privilege denied to many". -Unknown.
Friday marks one full year of this official cancer journey. I just can't believe it's been a year. In some ways it's just flown by in the blink of an eye - and in other ways, it feels like I have been traveling this road for eternity. It's daunting to think of how much my life has changed since this time last year. I am not sure how to process everything I am feeling about this milestone - it is a mixture of gratitude and joy for all the support we have received and for how well I am doing - but mixed in there is a deep sadness and grief over the tremendous losses I have suffered this year, the dreams I had that will no longer be, and the life I thought I had ahead of me. I am sure I will be thinking a lot about this all week and will share more reflections on Friday. All in all, my life is abundantly blessed and when I blow out those birthday candles, my wish will simply be to continue to live a life full of happiness, health and the love I feel surrounded by every day!
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