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In preparation for writing my next book, I completed a tedious and heart-tugging task today. My book will be about the “adventure” Marv and I undertook last year with his seven-month process of living with a terminal cancer diagnosis and my life afterward.

The starting point for the book with be the blog posts I wrote during that time. So my job today was to copy and paste all posts from my blog to a Word document, so they are ready for the next step of extensive revision, involving adding, deleting, and rewriting.

I could not simply copy the posts from their original Word documents, because I do a final edit once they are posted. So in copying and pasting, all the photos I’ve put on the blog came along. And there, along with the words, came the flood of memories. Both of us visiting friends. Marv at his parents’ graves. Marv at his last Fourth of July parade in his hometown of Prinsburg, Minnesota, Marv leaving our home for the last time in a hearse.

Sobering. Sobering. Sobering.

Plus, I’m in Arizona for the first time since he died last July. We came here during the winter the last three years to stay a bit and visit friends and relatives. Although I have family with me now, he is not here. He will never be here again. His absence is a void that will be present forevermore.

Marv told me he hoped I’d write a book about our experience, especially since I couldn’t find a book about anyone who’d opted out of treatment for small cell lung cancer that would’ve helped me, and I promised I would. It will take a while, I know, but I hope it is less than the eight years it took to complete Caring Lessons. SoI got my start this morning in the backyard of my rental home in Arizona. As I took in the eighty-degree sunshine, the memories surrounded me with more warmth. And elicited a few silent tears.