adultery, Betrayal, cheating, children, divorce, hypocrisy, in-laws, Janice Andrews, parenting after separation, relationships, single parent, the other woman

“You will always be our daughter-in-law”

Oh, the sentimental cliché that was uttered to me by my mother-in-law in the weeks following her realization that her son had in fact been cheating on me with another woman and had walked away from me and our children to pursue a relationship with Janice Andrews.

Fast forward 5 1/2 years and in that time there has been one phone call by my mother-in-law with my father-in-law on the other end and they brought me a birthday gift when they were in town 4 months later to see my daughter dance.  Then…crickets. I reached out once by email to my in-laws, including my brother-in-law, about my ex’s disturbing behavior and my concern but no response. They have been to visit their son at least once/year and never once have they called or wanted to see me. I have seen them in passing at my daughter’s dance recitals during their visit but that was it.  My father-in-law, in particular, especially during his visit this year, was extremely cold.

Two things got me thinking about this phrase. Firstly, I had coffee this morning with a friend of mine in her late 70’s and her husband in his 80’s. I have know their son and daughter-in-law for over 20 years.  Their daughter-in-law had an affair on their son over a year ago and destroyed their marriage. There is no chance of reconciliation. Yet, even though their son was betrayed (and the details and consequences for him as a result of the affair were severe–he lead a church and lost his job) have indicated she will always be their daughter-in-law and they have proven it by continuing to have a close and personal relationship with her. My friend told me, “I forgive her.”

We talked about another couple that we both know, who are my age with 2 girls the same age as my girls. They are part of our little circle of church connections who migrated to Vancouver Island at the same time and who have also recently split.  She told me that my girlfriend told her mother-in-law (we are also friends with her mother and father-in-law) she was so afraid she would lose her in the split.  Her mother-in-law replied, “You will always be my daughter-in-law” and they continue to hike and kayak together even though her mother-in-law has fallen into a deep depression over the split and also as a result of her husband’s recent Parkinson’s Disease diagnosis.

My friend asked me this morning if I had a relationship with my in-laws.  They had met them at our house during one of their visits.  I told her that I did not.  She was sorry.  I didn’t cheat on their son so why did they betray me too? Why is that my friend is still able to embrace the daughter-in-law who has hurt her son and grandchildren and the rest of their family so cruelly and my in-laws don’t care about the mother who is trying so hard to raise their grandchildren despite everything their son has done to tear apart their lives.

Secondly, my ex sent me a bizarre email. This was a comment that he wrote at the end of a long rant about something completely unrelated:

Do you think (my mom’s name) would act or request the things you do? She was selfless and always acted with kindness and regard for others. She always made a point of being inclusive when others were trying to exclude, such as (my brother-in-law’s name). You should try acting and honouring your mother rather than being the antithesis of everything she was and stood for.”

I have no idea why my ex suddenly brought my mom into his email and I was trying to understand why he was feeling excluded.  He is correct that even after my sister and her husband separated my mom invited my brother-in-law to every birthday and special occasion dinner.  It caused tension sometimes, especially for my sister, but we all see now how beneficial it was to everyone in the family in the long run and how amazing my mom was to put her relationship with my sister on the line to do what she felt was right and loving for her grandchildren especially but for the family as a whole because we are all still family. My mom practiced love and would have without a doubt, if she was here, done the same for my ex.  I don’t think, however, he would have had the courage to step into her circle of love. A lot of my family did reach out to my ex after our split but he didn’t answer or return any of their calls.  My girls have asked him to do things with me and them together but he has always refused. I told my ex, I would do things with him and our girls and put everything aside for those moments they needed for their well-being but he would not even try. He excluded himself. If he loved my mom so much as he claims that he did, why isn’t he honouring her by acting the way he says she acted.  He loves to tell me what I “should” do and hold me to some standard while ignoring it himself. It is he who is the “antithesis”.

When I told my ex that I had no understanding of his comments about my mom and his feelings of being excluded in context to his email subject he responded:

“You’re exactly right you don’t understand. My point was that your mother didn’t take sides. She didn’t get caught up in the politics. She didn’t hold grudges. She didn’t try to paint people in a negative light. She looked for ways to try and draw people together despite difficult and challenging life situations. (My brother-in-law’s name) was a perfect example. He didn’t pay a dime of child or spousal support. Your sister didn’t want him around for family functions but your mother would always invite him. Make sure it was about the children and there being able to spend time with their Dad. Despite the fact that she may not have agreed or been happy with (my brother in-law’s name), she never spoke negatively in front of the kids and was trying to make the best of the situation. Completely opposite of what you have chosen to do.”

He praises my mom’s behavior but it is the complete opposite of what he and his family have done.  I have no intention of ever doing anything with Janice Andrews but I have offered on many occasions to do the “family” thing for my girls. Maybe my ex should be sending his praise of my mom’s nature to his parents.  After all, it was his mom that told my daughter this summer, “Your mom will always be our daughter-in-law but your dad is our son.”  In reality her words are backed up by “Your mom will always be our daughter-in-law but we choose to wish the mistress Happy Birthday on Facebook instead.”

 

 

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abuse of power, adultery, affair, cheating, divorce, the other woman

The Silence Breakers

While my husband was still working for the competitor of the place he is now employed, he told me a story.

He was at an industry event.  He noticed that one of the male partners of another adjusting company (where he now works) was holding up a female coworker.  He said that she was so wasted she could barely stand.  He told me that it was a horrible reflection on this company and that the male partner should have put this female employee in a cab and sent her home.

Fast forward to him now working at this company with the two male partners.  My husband was hired to eventually take over from the one partner, who was holding up the incapacitated female staffer, when he retired.

My husband came home one night to tell me that the female employee, who he noticed at this industry event as extremely inebriated, had a lawsuit against his company.  She was alleging that the night he witnessed her in this condition, she was raped by another employee.  He shared details that were quite horrific. She never returned to work after that night.

He told me that the party had apparently started on the other partner’s boat that afternoon.  I don’t recall how many people he said were on the boat or if they were all coworkers.  The party moved from the boat to the place where my husband saw her walk in.  Apparently after that event she was taken back to the boat and raped.  The employee being accused of the rape denied it and said nothing happened between him and this coworker.

I had been on that boat with my husband and our 2 children shortly after he was hired.  It had 2 bedrooms.  I hated the way my husband acted that night and I was embarrassed by his behavior as a new employee and also in front of our children.  He got so drunk he fell into the ocean while trying to get into a Zodiac to take us back to shore.  I also had to pull the car over for him to throw up on our way back home.  He became a totally different person on that boat and I thought if he was trying to impress his new “partner-to-be” he was doing a terrible job.

There was another couple who joined us on the boat at some point during that day.  Months later, my husband would come home to tell me that the husband of that couple we met was waiting to hear if he was the father of some girl he had fooled around with who got pregnant. It was between him and another guy.  It turned out to not be his but again, I remember feeling incredibly sad for the wife of this man and thinking who are these men that are now in my husband’s life?

My husband relayed several other boat stories in the year and a half before I found out about his own affair with a coworker.  He shared many sexual stories about the partner who is the boat owner. He shared how his partner would leave topless photos of his wife on his camera and then give the memory card to their secretary to sort through and see them all.  My husband described “swinging” parties on the boat and I remember telling him that he better make sure he is never on that boat without me.

My husband came home again to tell me that the employee who was being accused of the rape had initially given a statement denying the entire event.  He initially said that nothing happened between him and this female coworker. Now, my husband reported, he changed his statement.  He said that his version was now that this female employee performed oral sex on him and that was all that happened.  My husband told me that no one at the office believed him and that it did not look good that he now changed his story. My husband told me that this employee was a husband with a baby on the way.

As far as the female employee, my husband said that she was apparently “mentally unstable” and that she had slept with the partner who owned the boat at one point while she was married.  This was going to be their defense.

With the current ‘#Me too Movement’ this seems so similar to many other stories.  There was no protection of the female employee.  She was left in a vulnerable condition and environment and placed in that position during a work event.  The male employee was believed and protected and the female employee was left having to find other employment.  She was being shamed and blamed in her office by her bosses.  She had worked there a long time and it makes no sense that she would just abandon her job with no other job to go to and not give proper notice.  Something obviously happened.

It is alleged that a date rape drug was used and she only had one drink.  She apparently doesn’t even recall being at the event where my husband saw her.

Apparently, the partner who owns the boat and who had a sexual relationship with this subordinate female,  had a clause in his contract that says if he sleeps with any other employees in their office he loses his company shares.  If this is true, there was a very serious known problem with the work environment he created.

This is the environment my husband now works.  I remember, and I think I have blogged about this before, my husband coming home and saying, “I don’t know he gets away with talking to women like he does.”  It was like my husband admired it.  Well, he gets away with it because men, like my husband, witness this and instead of calling him on it praise him and envy him for it and then emulate it.

Obviously Janice Andrews, who contributes to the environment by sleeping with married men and cheating on her husband, knew about the rape.  When I told her husband about his wife having an affair with my husband the first thing he said to me was, “Is he the guy who raped (name of victim)?”  Who knows, maybe Janice herself is a victim of the environment where she works. Maybe she was afraid she would lose her job if she didn’t participate with my husband.

Mehgan McCain on The View today said it best, “Any man who is screwing around at work anymore you better start running because this isn’t a good time for you.”

 

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adultery, affair, Betrayal, cheating, divorce, loss, the other woman

Stealing and Giving Back

This is what my friend posted on Facebook today:

“On eve of NewYear afternoon, I am getting ready for my long afternoon walk when my daughter calls to tell me, a guy snatched and ran way the donation jar.
Cindy was doing fundraising (for her next European Championship) at downtown Victoria, Almost after 5 hrs of fundraising on cold winter afternoon, the jar was filled and she was getting ready to wind-up when the incident happened. When I heard her disappointed voice, all I could say was ” You have done you part, but may be the money did not belong to you, just come home” and I left for my walk. Its not easy to let go the fruit of action, I was thinking about the all the hard work, making 100 samosas for the event as I walked along.
When I came home I expected disappointed pair dad & daughter at home. But Cindy calls again and says somebody called the Cop and the officer is investigating. For sure such stolen monies are never found, but reporting formalities are a must. The most astonishing part of the story is the officer gifts the entire amount stolen to Cindy, saying he wants her to do well in the tournament. No doubt most of the Police Officers are themselves sportsmen, but the kindness and thoughtfulness of this officer is a perfect example what sports does to build a strong character and commitment to ones community. Sports teach courage, resilience, and grit. It gives voice to the voiceless. Sports matter for everyone who wants a stronger, healthier nation.”

I have been thinking a lot about this story.  My daughter and I also experienced theft when we were fundraising for Team Canada.  I was so sad, disappointed and angry about the loss (Swarovski crystal sapphire flower pot–$100) and wondered how someone could feel they had the right to take from someone else, especially when it was for a cause and to help a child compete for their country, too, just for their own selfish gain.

Thieves will never have enough.  They will never be content.  Where the universe gave back to Cindy, the thief will experience loss and emptiness.  They will always be chasing what someone else has and feel entitled to use dishonourable means to take without feeling remorseful for the loss they caused others.

I think the same applies for cheaters.  How can a woman justify to herself that it is okay to have an affair with a married man and destroy him and his family because she thinks it will make her happier. On top of that, how can she even face his children let alone share a meal with them.  That is the devil sitting at my children’s table and they are supposed to smile, share their life with her, be respectful, exchange Christmas gifts with her and pretend she didn’t snatch their most valued possession–the security of their family and home.

I put 23 years of hard work into my relationship with my husband and for my family for the fruit of my labour to just be gone. Our goal was to display our marriage to glorify God.  People should have wanted what we had because it was special, not because of who we are or what we did but because of God. We helped a lot of people in their own marriages and were supposed to continue to help others. Instead, my husband gave away the most cherished part of our relationship for his own sexual glorification. Shame on the husband who opens the door for that woman.  He doesn’t see at the time that the thief is taking from him, too, because he is an accomplice.

Unlike my friend’s conclusion of the benefit of sport, cheating is one sport that only tears community apart.  It reveals lack of character.  It teaches cowardice, weakness, carelessness, and debility.   It makes us untrustworthy and a feebler and sicker nation. The universe does not give back to cheaters and in the end, they will be left with even less than what they had to start.

 

 

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adultery, affair, Betrayal, divorce, ex spouse, infidelity, Janice Andrews, narcissism, other woman, parenting, the other woman

Team Canada Showcase this Weekend

It is a huge honour that my youngest daughter was selected to dance for Team Canada.  We leave for Riesa, Germany next week where she will compete on the world stage.

Today we are back in Fort Langley, British Columbia for the Team Canada performers to put on a show for friends and family.  This is their first and only dress rehearsal performance before the competition.

Our daughter was allowed 6 tickets maximum.  She wasn’t going to ask her dad to come to see her dance.  He has had zero involvement in encouraging her and supporting her Team Canada dancing.  He refused to pay any portion of the expense–$3600 was just the starting point and he refused to take her to any of her rehearsals which involves a 1 1/2 hour ferry ride every Sunday ($88.20 one way for me and my daughter) and then a 45 minute drive to get to the studio. Then we do it all again coming back. He did end up giving her $250 this week for her trip and he bought a raffle ticket from her for a draw at the show.

I, however, cared more about my daughter having audience members who were there specifically to watch her.  I thought it would mean something to her if her dad was one of those people so I invited him to attend. He didn’t respond right away but he eventually said he would go.  I asked how many tickets he wanted and he said “just me”.

I invited him 3 weeks before the performance. When he replied he would come I asked him if he would be getting a hotel in Fort Langley because it would be too late after the show to make the last ferry.  He asked what time the show started and after I told him I didn’t hear from him for two weeks.  A week before the performance I asked him again about his hotel stay and got to my point about asking him directly if our daughter could stay over night with him in Fort Langley as she had her final rehearsal the next day from 12 to 2.  I asked him if he could take her to that rehearsal and then bring her home on the ferry afterwards. I told him how cute the downtown was and how it was filled with interesting history, amazing eateries and shops to help pass the 2 hours.  His response was that he had other plans and she couldn’t stay with him.

I don’t know why I was surprised or why I even felt annoyed by his response as it is completely on par with everything else he has done or hasn’t done for his children since our separation. I also tried not to speculate on what he was doing that he couldn’t have our daughter stay over night with him. I figured he was bringing Janice Andrews, the other woman, with him but then was wondering why he would leave her at the hotel and not bring her to support our daughter.  She went to her recital in June.  Also, our daughter has had to stay in a hotel with them before so could they really not sacrifice having sex one evening (they could have it before the show) in order to support her?  I wondered if he was planning on bringing a different woman with him instead.

Now I was going to have to drive back to Vancouver after the show only to return back to Fort Langley the next day.  It is close to an hour drive. At least I am staying for free with my older daughter. I couldn’t justify getting a hotel room myself in Fort Langley  as I can’t afford it and I have to drop my niece off at her place in Vancouver after the show. Even if I didn’t have my niece and just had my older daughter with us I would still have to drive into Vancouver the next day to bring my daughter home which would  then add another hour and 45 minutes on to our commute after the Sunday rehearsal.

Both the girls and I had hoped that Dave would have allowed our daughter to stay over night with him because I would have been able to spend Sunday with my older daughter as her 19th birthday will occur while we are in Germany.  We had talked about going shopping for some things she really needed and that she hoped I might get her for her gift.  We can’t do that today as we have to be in Fort Langley for 12:45 p.m. for my daughter’s lighting and technical blocking rehearsal before the show. Now instead I will have to take my younger daughter back to Fort Langley again on Sunday. My younger daughter made a disgusted type gesture blowing air out of her mouth and  rolling her eyes when I told her that she wasn’t able to stay with her dad after the show.

Friday, November 11 was the Canadian statutory holiday in British Columbia for Remembrance Day.  As both my daughters had no school, we decided to head over to Vancouver a day early.   My ex texted our daughter while we were waiting to board the ferry.  He asked which ferry we would be on.  She told him and he said he was going to be on the same ferry.  He told her that he was going to Vancouver to meet friends for dinner that night. How lovely for him.  He was going to be getting a hotel in Vancouver not just Friday night but going back there Saturday night, too, after the show.

We never saw him during the trip across.  While we were driving off the ferry my daughter noticed him in the lane beside us.  I wouldn’t have recognized him because he bought a new vehicle. She waved to him and announced to me that Janice Andrews was with him.

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adultery, Christianity, divorce, infidelity, renting, separation, the other woman

Lifting my Anchor Again

One overwhelming and very stressful situation that pushed my need to take the purposeful break from all aspects of my life involved another move.

While I was in the midst of my melanoma surgeries and still no indication the outcome would be the best case scenario possible, my landlord gave me notice that they were taking over my suite for personal use.

The housing situation in Victoria is crazy.  There is a shortage of inventory.  Overseas buyers are snapping up whatever they can and there has been a frenzy of home owners placing their home on the market to cash in on the ridiculous prices that home owners are receiving for their properties.   My realtor is so busy.  She told me she lists a home, has one open house the first weekend and then accepts all offers Monday morning. People aren’t even doing home inspections or placing any conditions on their offers.  My realtor has been getting anywhere from 14 to 21 offers at once on a property.  People are paying well over the asking price to make sure they win the bid.

As a result, the vacancy rate for rentals in Victoria is 0%. People are selling their homes to take advantage of the market and then renting hoping the market will either slow and they can buy back in or they are continuing to rent and just investing their money elsewhere.

I spent the 2 months after I received notice trying to find whatever I could as a place to rent.  As a result of the rental demand not only have prices increased but landlords can be way more picky with tenants.  I am not the ideal tenant as I have a dog, 2 cats (pets posed a problem for me even before the market change), 2 kids and no employment income.

Again, I had to rethink whether I could even stay in Victoria.  If I were alone, I would definitely not still be here but my reasoning for staying the next 4 years is that I didn’t want to move my youngest daughter away from her dad, sister, friends and dance studio. Therefore, to find a place to live I was looking well out of the school catchment for my youngest daughter prepared to commute unreasonable distances just to keep her life as stable as possible.  I had a hard talk with both my girls about options we needed to explore including them living with their dad at least temporarily until we found a place, placing the pets in foster homes and moving back to Ontario.  Even my kids were trying to come up with ideas suggesting they would talk to their dad about him moving in with Janice and then us taking over his place and that Janice could have pets at her place so she could take them temporarily.  They suggested staying on the island but moving up north 1 1/2 hours. In the end, they said, “Mom, we don’t care where we live but we want to stay the 3 of us together and the pets have to be with us.”

I investigated every referral from friends, searched online 4 or 5 times/day, placed my own advertisement, told anyone I met I was looking for a place, looked at places to camp and to stay over the summer for the interim and even planned out ways to exist as a homeless family. I tried to see if I could buy something even a trailer. I asked the landlord if we could stay at least a month longer and I tried to fight the eviction as well through the BC Tenancy Act dispute process to buy us more time.  God was being clear; I needed to move on yet again.

Through a lot of prayer and perseverance, I found a place to move to 6 days before my eviction date. I found the ad on my 4th try that day on UsedVictoria.  My daughter suggested I change my search to include smoking properties. I thought that would limit my search but it actually opened up this one property that didn’t care if we smoked or not in their unit.  I knew from losing other places that I had to be aggressive. I called the new potential landlord, sent an email and although the ad was placed with no address, just the street name, I tried to drive by and find it from the photos as I planned to knock on the door to speak to the landlord. I couldn’t find it by driving by as I only had photos of the back of the house. When they called back they said it was too late for me to come by that night (I still asked). They were showing it at 10 the next morning. I asked if I could come at 9.  I came with an application filled out, a letter about me, a page of referral names and numbers and a cheque to fill out for damage deposits and first month’s rent. They actually were planning on renting it July 1 but I said I would take it for June 1 as it was vacant and I didn’t care about any of the work they planned to do to get it ready.  My dog was almost a deal breaker but I pleaded and asked if I could bring him by to meet them.  I went and got the dog immediately and while I did that they called some of my references.  We must have won them over because they accepted us.

$1300 in moving expenses and a lot of exhausting help from friends packing and moving boxes and hard-to-pack items over in advance confirmed again that I don’t want to keep going through this process.  I have been getting rid of more and more stuff again as I am now renting less space for more money. More confirmation that the universe is telling me to lighten my load significantly.  I better start abiding or I suspect I will be forced again to move and to get out of my comfort zone and lose more possessions. I am being prepared for something I am certain that is going to involve me leaving everything behind.

Right now, my youngest daughter and I are sharing a room.  My older daughter is sleeping in what we call “the Harry Potter closet” as her tiny room doesn’t even have a window.  My kids have never complained once about our new living environment.  In fact my older daughter is the one to always say things like, “I lived in a dorm last year sharing a room and having less so this is no big deal,” or “we need to just be grateful we got a place”.

I am very grateful every day.  I came back from the break refreshed, refocused and with a renewed energy and purpose.  I have a lot to do and I am doing it.

 

 

 

 

 

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adultery, affair, anger, Betrayal, cheating, children, dance, disappointment, ex spouse, infidelity, Janice Andrews, marriage, separatiion, the other woman

Crappy Dance Dad

Dance competition season is here.

My 13-year old daughter competed on Friday performing her Jazz solo routine.  She came in second place and she won the Spirit Award.  Her dad was a no-show.

Tonight after her competition she asked me, “Was Janice there?”

I said, “I don’t know, was your dad there because I didn’t see him?”  She said, “I thought I saw Janice and it made me almost mess up my tap routine.”

While we were driving home her dad texted her and said, “Were you happy with your jazz routine?”

She texted back, “Did you see it?”

She then told him that if he had been there he would have heard the adjudicators give her individualized, very specific critiques about both of her tap and jazz solo routines. He would have heard that they only hand out 2 prizes, first and second place.  He would have seen her receive the second place award.  He would have seen her receive roses from the judges. He would have learned that first place and second place are now moving on to compete at Provincials.  He would have learned that his daughter achieved one of her goals and desires and is invited to Provincials for the first time in her life.

My daughter was congratulated by so many people.  People were taking her photo and photos of the first and second place winners. Her dad was not one of those people. He texted saying, “I didn’t stay because I just thought there were going to be comments and I didn’t know there were going to be awards.”

I was trying not to express how angry I was by his texts as she read them to me. I could hear her disappointment that her dad might have been there but couldn’t even be bothered to stay until the end. I thought, “I have been with her at dance from 10:00 a.m. until 10:00 p.m. today and you couldn’t bother to sit through commentary by very prestigious and accomplished judges specifically about your daughter’s dancing ability during her solos?”

Of all the times to bring the other woman because it just makes her look too uninterested to stay and that her dad once again put this woman as priority over her.  My daughter tried to protect her dad and make excuses for him by saying, “He probably left so Janice didn’t have to see you.” I didn’t respond.  I’ve been going through this for 3 years.  I have so much compassion for my daughter right now. I felt her sadness and disappointment. The highest dance honour she has received will be another reminded of her dad’s absence. I don’t need to reason with my child.  She knows the truth. I just vent here instead and her dad just puts more distance in his relationship with her.

I really tried hard not to let her dad’s indifference overshadow her amazing experience.  I took her to get a treat to celebrate and we focused on talking about all the great things that happened today at the competition.  I am so proud of her.  I am so proud of how hard she has worked for this and didn’t give up when she was feeling discouraged about her routine. I am so grateful that I was able to be there to share in her joy and to be part of her life and that she knows that.

We are back at it tomorrow from 8:00 a.m. until 10:00 p.m. as my daughter competes in all 3 sessions, morning, afternoon and evening, with her group dances. I am so tired but I am so lucky!

 

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adultery, affair, Betrayal, Cancer, cheating, Christianity, divorce, faith, God, melanoma, separatiion, Spirituality, the other woman

A Spreading Cancer and a beautiful Crater

I met with the doctor on Friday afternoon, last week.  She was held up in the operating room at the hospital so she was late getting back to her office. There were two patients for her to see before me so it was close to 3:30 when I finally got to meet with her.

The melanoma in my right arm has spread beyond the 5 mm perimeter on one side.  Therefore, I require more surgery. My doctor wanted me to come in on Sunday.  I told her I was leaving in the morning for March break. I was leaving with a girlfriend and her two daughters along with my daughter for a road trip. We had reservations at the Running Y Ranch Resort in Klamath Falls, Oregon for Saturday.  We booked to stay for the week (an amazing deal of only $150/week for a 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom condo) but we planned on leaving Thursday to go to Portland as our girls are in a dance competition.  It would be a 1 1/2 hour ferry ride from Victoria to Port Angeles and then another 10 hour drive to our destination so I really couldn’t delay the trip for 2 days without disappointing 4 other people.

We discussed the risks of waiting.  My doctor said if it was a basal cell carcinoma she would say it was okay to wait but she reminded me we are dealing with melanoma and “ideally” it should come out today.  She said there were two benefits of waiting.  Firstly, the scar on my arm is very tight.  The longer it has to heal the more chance there is skin for her to pull back over my wound.  She also said waiting until I get back would give her time to try and see if she could order a small batch of skin bond glue.  It is very expensive and I will have to pay for it.  She said she would see if she could order just enough for my procedure.  It will cost about $50.

So I made the decision to carry on with my trip. I booked my surgery for the first available appointment my doctor had after Easter which is the end of March break.

I do not regret my decision, at this point anyway. We are having an amazing time.  The resort was beautiful.  We made a lot of use out of the huge pool that we had to ourselves a lot of the time.  We enjoyed the Shriner circus, shopped, explored the lava beds in California, the Wildlife Refuge, climbed mountains, descended into caves, went on self-guided nature walks, visited Petroglyphs and learned a lot about the Madoc and Klamath Indian battles with the white settlers.

The highlight was being able to experience the awe of Crater Lake. We had wanted to go early in the week but due to snow storms there was no visibility even if we could make the drive up there.  We were able to view the webcams around the lake from our resort lobby. There was no visibility. It was fogged in.  The road was completely snow packed. The road had been closed the entire time we were in Klamath Falls but we heard that you could snow shoe from the Visitor Station to the rim in about 30 minutes. We decided to chance it on our way back towards Portland. It was a clear, sunny and warm day. It turns out that the road reopened just two hours before we arrived so we were able to drive up to the rim.

It was a very spiritual experience for me. The half million years it took for Mount Mazama to form.  Then the battle that was brewing inside it until it’s final eruption 7,700 years ago. So violent was that eruption that the foundation cracked in a complete circle and the entire mountain collapsed in destruction. When all that was left was the empty, scarred caldera it became filled with melted snow to form the deepest lake in the United States and possibly the purest source of water in the world. It was a real reminder to me of how the most difficult and traumatic experiences in our life that completely leave us depleted can be filled with everything good and pure and turn our lives into the most beautiful, unimaginable creations.

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