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Old 07-11-2009, 07:36 PM   #721
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I’m sorry you’re having debilitating pain again, Sammie. Did the doctor give you any idea how long it takes nerve endings to heal? It might make it easier to bear if you had a general idea of when you could expect some relief.

Congrats on doing so well prior to this setback. Hoping your nerve endings heal in record time and you can enjoy your upcoming trip.

And you, Miss Samantha, are most certainly not a sissy!
No, he didn't say how long to heal. Today I really needed to test myself and talked Mark into letting me go to the grocery store myself. I drove but it is only 3 blocks away. I barely got in to door and I was holding onto the cart when the pain came and I grabbed really tight and kind of bent over. Then of course, I went into a MAJOR hot flash and sweat was literally running down my face.

A nice lady asked if I was OK and what could she do. I told her I was fine and thanked her. I don't think she believed me I guess and went and got a store employee who came over and asked me to come and sit down. I tried to tell him that I would be OK in a few minutes. And I was. But I guess I scared a few people. But other than that I think I did fine. A little slow but fine.

I am trying to think positive and I will get through this. I really want to go to Portland and will use mind over matter to get there.

When you talk to a doctor and they say "I wouldn't worry about that if I were you", I want to say "I wouldn't worry about it either if you had it"
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Old 07-11-2009, 09:01 PM   #722
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When you talk to a doctor and they say "I wouldn't worry about that if I were you", I want to say "I wouldn't worry about it either if you had it"
That is a good one!

My mom is getting ready to have knee surgery - to mend a meniscus tear - and she is scheduling a stamp camp (she's an SU demo) the following week. I keep telling her she won't want to do it, but she says the Dr. told her she'd be fine. Sometimes I think Drs. are nuts!

I'm sorry you are hurting and I hope the nerves heal fast!

(((hugs)))
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Old 07-11-2009, 09:02 PM   #723
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No, he didn't say how long to heal. Today I really needed to test myself and talked Mark into letting me go to the grocery store myself. I drove but it is only 3 blocks away. I barely got in to door and I was holding onto the cart when the pain came and I grabbed really tight and kind of bent over. Then of course, I went into a MAJOR hot flash and sweat was literally running down my face.

A nice lady asked if I was OK and what could she do. I told her I was fine and thanked her. I don't think she believed me I guess and went and got a store employee who came over and asked me to come and sit down. I tried to tell him that I would be OK in a few minutes. And I was. But I guess I scared a few people. But other than that I think I did fine. A little slow but fine.

I am trying to think positive and I will get through this. I really want to go to Portland and will use mind over matter to get there.

When you talk to a doctor and they say "I wouldn't worry about that if I were you", I want to say "I wouldn't worry about it either if you had it"
Ah, my fellow over-achiever. I’ll only tsk-tsk you a little for driving (and ALONE!) when you’re in such extreme pain. Well, at least the grocery store employees had a little excitement! Glad you accomplished your mission though. One step closer to the head of the class!

Hot flashes – dang. It really sucks that you have to deal with those on top of everything else. I get them really bad also. I had a total hysterectomy about 5 years ago and was completely unprepared to be thrown right smack in the middle of menopause and all its ‘issues’.

How’s your wrist? Did the thrombosis work itself out?

OMG – you so should have said that!

You're still laughing, Sammie, and that's a good, good thing.
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Old 07-12-2009, 09:43 AM   #724
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When you talk to a doctor and they say "I wouldn't worry about that if I were you", I want to say "I wouldn't worry about it either if you had it"
Sammie, I hope you DO tell them that!

I think sometimes they need to hear it...

I'm sorry the trip to the store was so rough. It must be frustrating to have something so ordinary feel so overwhelming but I'm glad folks noticed and wanted to help. (((HUGS))) to you my friend. It's good to hear you laughing.
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Old 07-13-2009, 08:53 PM   #725
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Hi,

I took Sammie to the ER tonight and they are keeping her is in the cardiac unit at Meriter hospital at least overnight. She had started developing a shortness of breath and heaviness in her chest about three to four weeks ago. Two weeks ago she saw her PC doc who did an x-ray, breathing tests and blood work. Nothing showed any problems. Today it suddenly got acutely worse after doing some work outside. She called her oncologist because of the side effect of one of the chemo's she had was heart problems. They said that should not be the case. She called her PC doc and he told her to go straight to the ER.

They have put her on a blood thinner, gave her some nitroglycerin (which did help with the chest heaviness), given her potassium and done an x-ray and CT scan of her chest (don't know the results). They will continue with blood testing through the night. Tomorrow if everything is OK they will do a drug induced stress test and we will go from there.

That is all I know at this time.

Mark
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Old 07-13-2009, 09:07 PM   #726
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Ack! This girl can not catch a break! I hope all goes well.

Mark - thank you so very much for letting us know! ((((hugs to both of you))))
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Old 07-13-2009, 10:19 PM   #727
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Thank you Super Hero Mark for speaking for Sammie when she can’t.

We (possibly just I; did I miss it?) were not aware of the breathing issues. I’m so sorry she’s back in the hospital. I know how much she’s looking forward to the upcoming trip to see the grandchildren.

We know you’ll continue to keep us informed and please let her know that we’re all thinking of her.

DAMN this disease. But if anyone can beat it Miss Samantha can and WILL.
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Old 07-13-2009, 11:33 PM   #728
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Thanks Mark. This sounds very serious. I hope her heart is okay. Poor Sammie.
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Old 07-14-2009, 04:25 AM   #729
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My heart is with you and Sammie. (hugs)
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Old 07-14-2009, 05:30 AM   #730
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All the best wishes for Sammie and you too Mark.
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Old 07-14-2009, 06:34 AM   #731
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Thank you for keeping us updated Mark. I sincerely hope she improves today.
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Old 07-15-2009, 05:14 AM   #732
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Mark, very very warm thoughts to you and Sammie.

It completely bites that this has been such an unrelenting ordeal, but it's so clear that your love and support have made such a huge difference in getting through this.

(((HUGS))) and all the love in the world to both of you.
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Old 07-15-2009, 06:00 AM   #733
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Oh Mark, I just feel so badly for the two of you. My heart hurts for you both. Please know that you and Sammie are in my thoughts. I just wish that you could get a freaking break from all of this already. Warm thoughts and hugs to you both!
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Old 07-16-2009, 07:16 AM   #734
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I am home from the hospital. I am a little weak but OK. I will have follow up pulmonary tests next week. I begged to go home as DD and family are coming tonight for 3 days on their way to PA. There were no lung tumors and my heart tests came out good. The chemical stress test was "suspicious", but I'll find out what that means next week. It was something the nurse told me and not the DR.

Thanks for the kind e-mails and nice posts. You all have made me stronger just knowing that people care.

I married an angel - 40 years now. I am so very grateful.

Thank you all.
Love,
Sammie
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Old 07-16-2009, 07:33 AM   #735
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Oh Sammie! I'm glad you were able to come home and that you will be able to spend some quality time with your DD. I'm hoping that all tests come out in your favor. And you are right, that lovely man you married is an angel! I hope he is doing ok too! Warm gentle hugs to you.
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Old 07-16-2009, 07:38 AM   #736
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I'm glad you are home Sammie. Have a great three days with your daughter and her family. I am soooo glad the heart tests came out good, and you have no lung tumors. Hopefully the chemical tests are okay too.

40 years of marriage! That is awesome!
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Old 07-16-2009, 01:37 PM   #737
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Happy to hear you are doing better. Have fun with the family.
{{HUGS}}
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Old 07-16-2009, 02:29 PM   #738
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Yeah Sammie! I'm so glad you're home and don't have to miss your daughters visit. And so wonderful to hear that you're doing better! Good thoughts for next weeks tests.
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Old 07-16-2009, 05:02 PM   #739
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{{{hugs}}} Sammie. I'm glad you got out of the hospital in time to see your DD and her family. I hope that you don't have any more scary brathing/heart symptoms, and that your test results next week are ok.
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Old 07-21-2009, 03:39 PM   #740
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Oh Sammie! I'm glad you were able to come home and that you will be able to spend some quality time with your DD. I'm hoping that all tests come out in your favor. And you are right, that lovely man you married is an angel! I hope he is doing ok too! Warm gentle hugs to you.
Nadine,
Thank you so much for the beautiful card. You made a bad day so very much brighter.
Hugs and love to you too.
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Old 07-22-2009, 05:03 AM   #741
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Nadine,
Thank you so much for the beautiful card. You made a bad day so very much brighter.
Hugs and love to you too.

You are very, very welcome Sammie!
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Old 09-19-2009, 12:33 AM   #742
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It's 3:30 AM and I can't sleep. Pain is too much tonight. I hate it when I hurt everywhere and can't do anything about it.

I am having another O/P surgery on Oct. 13th. Bummer. Dh and I had planned a trip to Phoenix to just relax Saturday and we are still going. I need to float in the pool and just relax. So I delayed the surgery a little. We have cancelled our Phoenix 3 times, but not this time.

I hate being sick. It's interesting how many friends just slowly back away - and 2 of my sisters. I guess the sister thing hurts the most. I never even talk about myself. I guess seeing me is a reminder that we are all capable of getting ill. No one gets out of here alive.

I do have one sister I am really close to though and a few friends. So that is nice. I hope I can sleep soon.
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Old 09-19-2009, 12:42 AM   #743
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Hi Sammie,

I'm glad to hear you'll get to just float in a pool and relax a bit.

I think a lot of people just don't know what to say or do, and yes, it's difficult to see someone that makes you think about your own mortality.

And some people don't think they're strong enough. Or they have other things going on in their life, and feel like it's "just too much" or they can't be supportive enough or something. I think sometimes they mean well but feel if they can't give more, they should just be quiet.

Whereas you would be quite happy to just have a simple relationship.

Eh, I don't know. Just wrambling. I'm sorry you're up late because you can't sleep because of pain.

((hugs))
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Old 09-19-2009, 06:32 AM   #744
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Hello Ms. Samantha. I’m sorry you’re in pain and can’t find some relief. Night time is so often the enemy – when there’s nothing to do but focus on the pain/worry/fear.

The trip to Phoenix sounds wonderful. Floating in a pool (with drink in hand!) is my idea of water sports. I hope it will be a good trip for you.

I’m dumbfounded about your experience with friends, and especially your sisters. If you love someone how can you not be there for them? Ug. I guess it’s tough situations that show peoples true character. Maybe they'll figure it out.

I hope the light of day brings you some peace and comfort.

‘No one gets out of here alive’ – ain't that the truth.
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Old 09-19-2009, 09:14 AM   #745
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Hi Samantha, so sorry about your pain! That sucks about your friends and sisters backing away. I hope you were able to get some sleep. And I'm glad that you still have the one sister and the few friends who have not backed away.

I think I agree with Kathy, that people back away 'cause they feel uneasy and awkward, and don't really know what to do??

How do you think they would respond if you dropped a casual "let's do lunch" email? Maybe they would "come back"?

Another thought I had was, they might be backing away 'cause they don't want to be a burden on your time? For example, they might think that if they ask you to do lunch, that it might be too hard on you??

I am just rambling as well, trying to find a not-hurtful explanation for their backing away. I am at a loss, and just feel bad for you.
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Old 09-19-2009, 02:56 PM   #746
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I'm thinking of you today and sending you positive, healing thoughts.

{{{{{Sammie}}}}}
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Old 09-19-2009, 04:56 PM   #747
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Thanks everyone. I will try the lunch idea. I don't talk about my breast cancer but sometimes it’s like the elephant in the room thing. I am more than willing to talk about I don't want to burden anyone with my problems. I do think some of it is that the thought that we die is not a comfortable thought.

One of my good friends has stage 4 breast cancer that has gone to her liver. We went to lunch and I told her that I was there to listen, cry with her or just to sit and hold her hand. It was very nice as I felt she needed someone to just be with her. It was comforting for me too.

I don't want to do that with my friends. I just want to laugh and talk like we used to. I know I look different. My hair was brown before chemo and it came back in a really pretty white. I think it bothers people too that when they look at me it is a constant reminder that I am different. I don't want to dye my hair to make people forget abut why I have white hair. I just want to be me. I don't want to be thought of as a sick person. I want to just be me...the same person before cancer. I do try.

I don't think I will have a problem sleeping tonight. I can barely stay awake now and it is only 8 PM. But I painted 6 hours yesterday and all day today to finish the laundry & furnace room downstairs. I am exhausted as is Mark. For some reason we are both full of bruises and can't remember how we would have gotten them. No more house updates now. I just want to go to Phoenix and lay by the pool or float in the water with my friends there. It will be nice.

Thank you so much for all your advice. It makes me feel good to come here and feel the caring.

HUGS.
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Old 10-12-2009, 09:15 AM   #748
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Oh man. One more surgery tomorrow but it shouldn't be too big of a deal. I hope. The Docs are going to remove the original skin and tissue etc. on the inner side of the breast that they made and then stretch the good skin, muscle and tissue over and sew it to better skin etc. that is not dying. They were hopeful that the skin that was there from the mastectomy would live. To me, the original surgeon just sliced off the breast and saved no skin. So they closed what was left and made bets on whether the skin would survive.

Then during the Tram Flap surgery, they attached the stomach muscles (that was made into a breast) to that old and bad skin. I know they were hoping it would survive but they could have saved me this surgery if it just would have been removed. I guess there was a reason but I can't remember. Anyway, I will be sore again for a while but I want this to be the LAST time I have surgery. I am still scared a lot about recurrences but I need this original stuff to end.

I am tired. I have been fighting eye problems. The tissue and cells are torn over the cornea in my Horner's Syndrome eye and it has been very painful. It became infected and then transferred to the other eye. So steroids and antibiotics are helping. Mark probably has a torn Rotator Cuff and will need surgery. We are both tired of hospitals.
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Old 10-12-2009, 09:31 AM   #749
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Hey Sammie
You know I've been thinking about you and I wanted you to know just how much you sharing your story means to me once again. If I'm to be absolutely honest the best thing youhave done for me is help me be not afraid of cancer. Does that sound bizare? Bizzare? How does one spell bizahr? lol

Anyway you are a true inspiration for everyone. Not just those who may be fighting cancer or other illness but for those of us working to better our marriages and families. You have so many lessons to teach and I thank you from the bottom of my heart for teaching them.

Very gentle peaceful hugs to you and Mark.
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Old 10-12-2009, 09:36 AM   #750
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Oh Sammie, another surgery? I'm sending lots of good thoughts that this will indeed be your LAST surgery. And Mark again too? Dang, you two are long overdue to catch a break.

And to have to deal with your eye issue also just makes the party so much more fun.

We'll all be thinking of you tomorrow.
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Old 10-12-2009, 12:11 PM   #751
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Sammie, best wishes for the surgery tomorrow. I hope it will be the last one too. I hope your eyes heal soon. And best wishes on Mark's rotator cuff surgery too!!! Hugs to the both of you.
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Old 10-13-2009, 05:20 AM   #752
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Hugs and warmest of thoughts to you today, Sammie.
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Old 10-13-2009, 07:29 PM   #753
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On behalf of Sandi and myself, I want to send out our heartfelt thanks for all the caring, prayers and kind words to Sandi for her surgery today.

Sandi's surgery went well. She has pain of course and has to wear a chest binder for a week. I am not sure that is going to make her too happy. But the surgeon was very pleased that he removed all the rest of the damaged tissue, muscle and skin. She says she looks like a road map on her chest. But to me she looks as beautiful as the day I married her.

She seems more worried about my torn rotator cuff than herself. It will get repaired and I hope she will be "repaired" too in every way possible.

Thank you and she said to send her love to all of you. I do too. You have been so gracious also to me and I have felt the concern also. You are wonderful people at heart.
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Old 10-13-2009, 09:55 PM   #754
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Yeah Sammie! So glad to hear surgery went well. Yes, that chest binder will be annoying but you can take it. And that ‘road map’ on your chest – that’s the road map to your future. It’s a testament to what you’ve been through and a sign of future hope.

Awww, Mark. You are a dream hubby come true. Sending strength and comfort to you and gratitude for your loving strength. It must be so comforting to Samantha to know that she has you in her corner. Good thoughts to you for your upcoming surgery. You two make an incredibly awesome, inspiring team.

Sammie, don’t fret about posting under the influence of pain meds. Wee don’t juge. Were just hapy too here from yu.

STAY ON TOP OF YOUR PAIN MEDS!!!
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Old 10-13-2009, 11:03 PM   #755
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Yeah! A couple of weeks ago, Muddy Otter had some minor surgery and pain meds and was posting in our chat thread and she was DEFINITELY altered! We all had a fun chuckle. So no worries either way.

Glad it went well, Sammie and Mark!
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Old 10-14-2009, 03:45 AM   #756
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So glad to read this~~~!
Hope this is it for you Sammie!
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Old 10-14-2009, 05:18 AM   #757
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Hi Mark,

Thanks for the update. Warm hugs and best wishes for a quick recovery for Sandi. I'm so glad you both have eachother to lean on during these difficult times. All the best to you both.
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Old 10-14-2009, 08:00 AM   #758
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Thanks guys. Yup, th4ese darn pain meds due a number on me. I had posted something here several months ago and then when I went in the next day, what a mess. It was kind of funny.

I am doing OK. The DR did a bit more surgery than we expected so I have about an 8 inch curved scar or more from the top of the breast, under and over to the arm pit. As Mark has said, I am all bound up. It's not too bad. I just had a bad night as I can only sleep on my back.

On one from my family (other than my DDs remembered). It kind of makes me feel bad. I guess my mother and sisters are sick of hearing about my surgeries or cancer in general. So no one called. Oh well, that is life I guess.

My sister had surgery on her thumb and that is all my mother talked about before and after for the past 3 weeks. I did contact my sister over the week end to see how her thumb was feeling though.

It must be the meds, I am feeling sorry for myself. But then I come here and can feel the warmth.

Thank you.
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Old 10-14-2009, 08:00 AM   #759
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Mark thank you for the update and thank you for such an obviously love filled post. Your relationship is so inspiring. Thank you for sharing.
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Old 10-14-2009, 09:25 AM   #760
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Sammie and Mark,

I hope you can both feel the love surrounding you.

Soft, gentle hugs,

Rainsong
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