Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Follow up to : An AMAZING Story about Life, Love & Cancer

I lost my father to cancer almost 7 years ago. He was 4 days shy of his 56 birthday. One thing that has stuck with me since the night he died, was something his Doctor said to my family. An amazing Doctor who went above and beyond. Dr. Quigg stood in my parents dining room, which was filled with my family, my Aunt's and Uncles, etc. and he said " It isn't the number of years you live, but it's the life you live in those year! And I know Tom lived a fabulous life, just look around this room and see how much love there is, some people live 80 or 90 years and never experience that much love and live life the way he did. "

While I didn't know Meghan, I feel this must also ring true for her as well. To have your husband devote his life to completing your list of life goals. It's inspiring! Meghan's dreams and wishes will still come true because Adam is doing them for her. These are all dreams and wishes that they would be doing together as husband and wife, so it's not a huge stretch for Adam to be completing them, BUT the respect I have for Adam, to be able to take on this knowing how unfair it is that Meghan's not physically beside him each step of the way! Adam you truly are an amazingly brave man!

For those who didn't read my first blog post on Meghan and Adam in June.... I came across a Blog at the end of May called The Bees Knees it was a blog about a woman who was battling breast cancer, and her journey, an incredibly brave and bold blog. I noticed that the most recent blog posting were being signed off by Adam, not Meghan. I began to read more....

Meghan Baker Warner lost her battle with breast cancer at the age of 28, 1 day shy of her 1 month wedding anniversary to Adam Warner. As you found out in my first blog on them, Meghan was a list maker, she had a list of life goals that she would add too. Not 10 minutes after his wife passed away, Adam decided he was going to take over her list and complete it for his wife. And for the past few months that is just what he has been doing. Adam just completed a train trip across Canada last week. Check out The Bees Knees for his blog post about his journey on the train.

I sent Adam some new questions about how things have been going over the past few months...

Q: Adam we first chatted via email back at the end of May, that was just before you started you journey on completing Meghan's life goals. How has the things been going?

A : Things have been going well, I’ve actually completed a couple of Meghan’s goals and it feels like this thing is actually moving after so many months of planning.

Q: I'm looking at the list now, there are two goals that have stuck out to me since I first saw her lists. The first you completed together #5 on the new goals, ( Get Married ) which you and Meghan did on March 28th 2010. The second is #12 on the new list, To travel to Ireland with her father.

Is this something that you and Meghan's dad have now talked about doing together?

A: We’ve actually talked a lot about doing that trip. We’re hoping to do it next summer and have expanded it to our families. We really want to turn it into a big celebration for Meghan while we’re there.

Q: Will your families be taking part in any of the goals on the list with you?

A : Definitely. Its often hard to keep track of who is doing what, where and with whom but its definitely important to include our families in this. Family was really important to Meghan and I know it means a lot to everyone to continue to experience Meghan through some of her goals.

Q: I know you are in the midst of taking the train across Canada which was a goal on Meghan's list. How has that trip been?

A: The trip has been really great. I highly recommend taking the train, its super comfy and relaxing and a great venue for some soul searching and deep thought.

Q: Since we did our first blog together Meghan's story has been in the Toronto Star, you have done many interviews, how does it feel to know that Meghan's words are being shared and touching so many people? And possibly even getting more young women to realize that Breast Cancer can effect a woman at any age, so it's important to know your body...

A: Its really great. This is exactly what I wanted to happen. Meghan would be so happy to know that she continues to help and change people’s lives in many different ways. Its comforting to me knowing that she can still encourage and offer advice and raise awareness.

Q: Together you and I have chatted and the I have changed my team name for the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation CIBC Run for the Cure to For the love of Meghan, we have made the team a National Team so any run site across Canada and choose to have a team in honour of your wife, what do you want the people of those teams to know about Meghan as they take part in the run/walk on Sunday October 3rd 2010?

A: Have fun with it. Meghan would (and did) have a blast at the race she took part in. These runs are about triumph and inner strength, know that you’re part of something much bigger and much more connected.

Here is a reminder of Meghan's list of Life Goals.....

So.... here we go- (Thursday, September 10, 2009)
Life Goals...

1) To hold a PhD, I'm not too picky on what it is going to be in. The way I am going though, I think it's bound to be nursing.
2) To learn another language. I've got a head start on Korean and French, I just need to get motivated enough to do it.
3) To master at least one of the following musical instruments - cornet, cello, piano, or guitar.
4) To live in at least 5 different countries - So far I've only got Canada and Korea. I'm assuming that I will have United States in the near future (preferably San Fran, DC, Portland and Maine). I'm thinking somewhere in Europe and in South America?
5) To run a half marathon. I've a lot of training to do though, seeing as the 5km I ran today was far from easy.
6) Spend at least 100 hours volunteering. (Note*** So far I'm up to 40h :))
7) Master the following- sewing, knitting & crocheting (Note*** on my way with knitting/sewing, kinda sorta)
8) Become part owner of a Bed & Breakfast (with Adam)
9) Travel to 30 countries. I'm at 7 now.
10) Read at least 12 books a year until I die (Textbooks NOT included).
11) Complete 'The Weekend to End Breast Cancer' 60km walk in Toronto. Sept 11-12.
12) Own a little cottage by a lake.

New Goals-
1) Take the train across Canada
Go to an NHL game (don't really care where, I just want to go)March 6th in Ottawa
3) Make Peter take me (and friends) to a Blue Jays game... I don't really have any interest in baseball, but I think it would be fun.
Go to the Symphony. Feb 20th in Toronto
Get married (hahaha, um... no pressure Adam) March 28th in Petrolia
6) Go to Canada's Wonderland with my friends/family
7) Take a road trip back to Maine
8) Go snowshoeing
9) Go ice-skating on the Rideau Canal
10) Get my darn tooth fixed
11) Get some darn shiny nice new glasses
12) I've always wanted to go to Ireland with my father... it's been a dream of mine since I was just a little girl. My father has been, and he loved it. I would love to share this with him while I still can. I don't think I'm ready to let go of this dream yet.
13) See the northern lights.
14) Travel to India to volunteer in orphanages.

Please check Meghan's blog The Bees Knees for yourself. I know you will be inspired not only by Meghan's words but now by Adams. I named my first blog on them An Amazing story about life, love and cancer. Because it is! In fact I have been so moved by their story that I decided to talk to Adam about doing a National team for the CIBC Run for the Cure. Adam will be in India at the time of the run, completing another check on the list of life goals, so I decided to change my team name to For the love of Meghan. It's a National team now, so any run site can have a team in Meghan's honour. In fact I encourage it! Meghan's words have touched so many already and they should be shared by so many more! If you want more information about how to join my team in Collingwood, or have a For the love of Meghan team at your run site, please contact me.... jnichol@cbcf.org

I am truly honoured to be able to share their story with you. Wishing Adam all the best on his upcoming trip to India. The love you have for your wife truly shows Adam.
I will once again ask each of you to take a few moments to check out The Bees Knees.... Oh and Please tune in to 95.1 The Peak FM on Thursday August 19th @ 9am to hear Adam speaking with John Nichols on the CHATS program! Here about Meghan from Adam himself!

Ladies, we are never to young to start squeezing our lemons! So squeeze away!

( Photo from the facebook page For the Love of Meghan. )

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