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©2019 by Kevin Wathey


December 27, 2015

/ Author:

Desolation (dɛs əˈleɪ ʃən) – extreme sadness caused by loss or loneliness


The holidays are synonymously intertwined with thoughts of gaiety and joy. A specific moment in time, every year, to give thanks for what we have been given in our lifetime. I believe, now, I have begun to allow this euphoric mentality to re-enter into my existence…


5 Years Later…


Bernadette Suzanne Vanyo, my mother, was the most illustrious and kindred soul I have had the pleasure of knowing. It’s an interesting thing, how bias is formed. An inseparable bond, and one that could only be created from sharing the precious life-giving fluid we call blood. No matter what events occur in a lifetime, a piece of them will always be with you.


This is her story…


On the eve of a Christmas Party in 2009, my parents made the executive decision to sit us down on the couch and inform us of the tragic prognosis.


Cancer. 3 to 6 months to live.


Thoughts of emaciation and despair, race through my mind, which may be a direct result of my personal contact to this vile word. You cannot begin to fathom the seemingly eloquent intrusion of something we thought was incredibly less invasive. Minor pain, turns out to be an irreversible life-changing event. The cause of which is utterly shocking. Hopelessness swarms your entire being, like being enveloped by a cloud of smoke. Countless feelings fester inside of you until nothing but rage is left. You begin to question your own being in an attempt to retrieve any sense of control. But, YOU are hopeless. You cannot fathom why someone so compassionate and genuine can be embedded with something, so devastating, yet their spirit and drive continues to work from within. A sense of hope and faith that, everything will be all right, begins to soar through your soul, and aspirations of what’s to come never waiver. You begin to believe that this magnificent driving spirit can never falter. Nothing seems to faze the only person, I, believe to be genuinely beautiful. She shed rejection and ridicule like someone impenetrable to self-doubt.


Just a year prior she completed a triathlon, had a lively personality, and owned her own business. It amazes me how briskly a single cell mutation can revoke ones faculties.


After countless appointments, CT scans and procedures, chemotherapy proved to be the viable option. A treatment that would kills cells in her body in hopes of conquering the disease. On the date of her first chemotherapy treatment, my mother made me a promise; she would spend one last Christmas with her family.


My mother passed away from Stage 4 Pancreatic Cancer on December 26th, 2010 at 10 A.M. in her home in Phoenix, Arizona.

It’s difficult for me to talk about her when she is no longer here, but I can find no better way to say, I love you mom.


The darkest hour is just before dawn.


~I Hope You Dance~

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