My Alyx

My niece, Alexandra, was born when I was twenty. I remember being excited because I already had a nephew- now I had a niece. I had two other nephews, Matt and Greg, and I always loved them all, but the only girl was special…as she got older she loved her brother and adored her cousins.

It’s twenty one years today that you left me and finally were able to rest. Babci and Dziadziu are up there with you now, and you also have my Zusher. I know God took the best to keep you company. Rest well, Alexandra. Cioci will always love and miss you.

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I have three nephews, from ages 28 to 42.

I only had one niece,who liked to sign her name as Alyx.

She was born 38 years ago today, and I remember it like it was yesterday. I came home and found a note on my pillow from my Dad. I was a new Cioci ( Polish for Aunt) to a little girl names Alexandra Marie. She was a beautiful gal with cornflower blue eyes and Breck blond hair.

I didn’t get a chance to spend a lot of time directly with her, as I was in Philadelphia working and my brother’s family was in Wisconsin. I did manage to go for vacation every year.

God needed a lot of angels the last week if August 1997 and beginning of September 1997. The two weeks took Princess Diana, classical conductor Sir Georg Solti, my niece Alexandra, and Mother Theresa. Alyx lost her battle with her brain tumor, She was 18 years old.

Today she’d have turned 38. I like to think she has Zusher up there for a new party pal this year.

Happy birthday Alyx…..I miss you and will always love you.

Alyx

Alexandra was my only niece. I loved her to pieces, but I think even she knew I was better with the nephews and her brother. I mean, I got to the point where I could play with Fisher-Price toys, Matchbox, Hot Wheels, Thomas the Tank Engine…you get my drift. Alyx was an Madame Alexander doll girl, and I was Little Kiddles, back in the day. Yet, we still loved each other and hello Kitty.

Today, Alyx would be 38 years old.


Here is a picture of us circa 1994. We are standing in my parent’s front yard. This was always my favorite picture of the both of us together. It is bittersweet, as I was in my first cancer during this time and I would lose my sweet Alyx 3 years later to a mid-brain tumor. It was, kind of, the end of our golden age.

My Dad passed away the year after Alyx, and Mom in 2012. I know Alexandra is up there is good company.

I miss them all.

Survivor’s Guilt Redux

Yes, I know I shouldn’t have it.I got through 3 major cancers and I am still here.

My niece, Alyx, isn’t.

She would have been 37 today.She left our family 18 years ago on September 2, when she was 18 years old.

I managed to get through college, travel,have boyfriends,get engaged and married, hold jobs,have cats, dogs,watch nephews and Godchildren grow up, but Alyx is like Princess Diana to me. She will always be 17, as she was before the cancer, and always beautiful.I got some solace from the fact that she passed away the week Princess Diana, classical conductor Sir Georg Solti and Mother Theresa died.

They sure were short Angels in heaven that week.

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It’s that time of year

….at least  for me!

Today is my 22nd anniversary of my 1st cancer, and the protocol I was fortunate enough to get into at Jefferson Hospital, and have Dr.Charles J.Dunton as my oncologic gynecologist.

Chemotherapy ,radiation and a hysterectomy later, I was blessed to be good to go.

I’ve had two other cancers since then, breast and thyroid, and mercifully I got through them. It pained me , though, that I lost my 18 year old niece ,Alyx, to a mid brain tumor, and yet I was still here, thanks to my employer’s health plan.

This is always an anniversary for me: it reminds me God’s not done with me yet. 

 

Alyx

it was eighteen years ago today that my sweet niece, Alexandra, lost her fight to a mid-brain tumor.

Alex was one of a kind: smart, pretty, witty and yet, God felt the need to make her an Angel. I survived my share of cancer, but God wanted the good angel.

I am grateful my older nephew Matt had the chance to have a few memories with her, as Greg was too young.

I pray that I will see her again one day. I know we’ll have enough to catch up.

  

Life’s Short

The joke is where we have moved to, well, let’s just say I’m one of the youngest people here, full-time wise.

A good percentage of the residents come down for the summer, or part of it. A neighbor of our that we would have lived immediately next to, if we bought the first house, lives in Collegeville. He has been coming down here for ten years or so. He is married and has two adopted and one biological tumor.His age is somewhere between mine(55) and Jim’s(60).

He came down here over the weekend with one of our neighbors and his family.

He wants to die here at his house here.

He has a mid-brain tumor.

For those of you who know me personally, or have been reading the blog for a while, you’ll recall I lost my niece, Alexandra, to a mid-brain tumor.She died at 18.

What flashbacks this has brought back to me, my neighbor’s illness.A brain tumor is definitely NOT how you want to go out. It is a fight, a hard fight.

My neighbor and I were walking past his house and one of the neighbors came out and said he isn’t expected to last the night: hospice is there with them.

We mourn the man, but rejoice that his suffering will be done. I am happy he actually hung in through the car ride to get down here, but I know this was his final wish.

Kiss or hug someone you know after you read this. Do it for me.

Life is too damn short.

Fighter

I went to make a sick call for Church tonight and stopped at a former neighbors while I was in the area.

I heard her call,” Come in.” and did, only to see her crying.

My good friend lost her 47-year-old daughter to cancer. She passed away today.

I immediately thought back to my niece, Sandy, who passed away at 18 to a mid brain tumor. Jeanne passed away today from metastatic breast cancer at the age of 47. She left behind her mom, 2 brothers, 2 sisters, husband, and two children, 10 and 8 years old.

Jeanne fought the good fight and gave it her all, but as I say a lot: cancer is a very mean disease.

Heaven needed another angel.
Rest in peace, Jeanne.

Memories

One of the things I’ll miss about living at our current spot is a tree.

In front of the house, there is a Japanese maple.Nice and cooling in the summer, and vibrant in color now, we have had many memories of that tree.

In honor of my nephew Matthias’ birthday today, the one I will share with you is this. My late niece was in town with my brother and their family, and Matthias, Sandy, and I had a good day at Mom’s, playing whiffle ball in the back driveway. Afterward, Matthias, who loved the tree, would climb up in it, and we have a picture of Matthias and Sandy and myself at the tree, with young Matt actually in the tree.

Below this post is a picture of the current beautiful color out front in the tree.It’s bittersweet that I won’t see it next year, but the memories, happily, will go with me.

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Hurricane Sandy

I only had one niece.

Her name was Alexandra, and she passed away in September of 1997.

My two nephews here, Matt and Greg, used to call her Sandy.

I don’t think Greg remembers her that much, but Matt and I chatted about her the other day, and about how we missed her.

I am hoping “Sandy” will cut us some slack and send her namesake further up the coast, leaving Undisclosed in one piece.

**Fingers crossed**