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Unexpected Visits

http://lh5.ggpht.com/gallant.christopher/R0trya7cZYI/AAAAAAAAAKE/mJ54FJMa690/s400/FreshCutGrass_3360x1050.jpg Connie Shannon “When you open the tennis can and it whistles, decadron overnight delivery think of me” -  Karen The other morning, decadron overnight delivery an old friend came to see me. She and I and some other members from my tennis club were seated at a church service, decadron overnight delivery in my dreams. Dreams are funny. They feel so real at the time we are dreaming them. I haven’t thought of Karen in a while. Life moves us forward and memories of those who’ve left us are eventually placed on our memory shelves, decadron overnight delivery until those times we are compelled to remember them. It was one of those dreams that stayed with me after I woke up. Karen was a friend of mine I met at my club where I play tennis. I wouldn’t say she and I became fast friends. She was older than I was and a better player. I remember when I first met her, decadron overnight delivery I was intimidated. Decadron overnight delivery On the court and off, decadron overnight delivery she could be tough and no nonsense at times. Decadron overnight delivery   In the same breath, decadron overnight delivery she was the first to laugh at herself, decadron overnight delivery and had this naturally light, decadron overnight delivery gracious demeanor.  And more than (almost) anything, decadron overnight delivery Karen loved tennis.  She was a terrific doubles player and formidable competitor. Decadron overnight delivery Everything Karen did, decadron overnight delivery she did exceptionally well. And for someone new to town, decadron overnight delivery who primarily joined the club to socialize and meet people, decadron overnight delivery Karen’s strong alpha presence was something I had to warm up to. Which is one of the reasons why taking up tennis has been so good for me. Sports teach us a lot about ourselves and about others. I guess you could say I didn’t get to know Karen well until she became ill. She was playing out on the court one day and fell and fractured her hip. The injury led to her finding she had Stage four bone cancer. After she had been diagnosed, decadron overnight delivery some friends at the club and I began to take dinners to her house once a week (which grew into more evenings as time passed) , decadron overnight delivery which turned into welcomed weekly get togethers for everyone.  One various weekdays, decadron overnight delivery I would take her two terriers for a walk.   To be more accurate, decadron overnight delivery it was the terriers who walked me.    They were small, decadron overnight delivery but incredibly strong for their size and equally enthusiastic for a run around the neighborhood.   At times when the chemo and radiation sapped her of almost all of her strength and energy, decadron overnight delivery we would take turns driving Karen to the hospital for treatments. During such times, decadron overnight delivery we’d catch up on the typical things happening over at the club - what matches were going on, decadron overnight delivery  who was playing well and any club gossip she may have missed. Decadron overnight delivery We’d talk about how the chemo treatments were going, decadron overnight delivery which ones had worked, decadron overnight delivery which ones weren’t, decadron overnight delivery and how she was feeling. Decadron overnight delivery   Interestingly, decadron overnight delivery in knowing others who have gone through chemotherapy, decadron overnight delivery Karen actually looked forward to her treatments which seemed to make her feel better. Decadron overnight delivery   They seemed to give her energy. It was only when her blood count would become too low that she couldn’t receive treatments, decadron overnight delivery which was difficult for her in many ways namely because of the cancer spreading. Decadron overnight delivery   At other times, decadron overnight delivery Karen would tell me about her days in the working world as an Advertising exec, decadron overnight delivery of which I have no doubt she was probably the best in her field and/or at least her division. Decadron overnight delivery   She did mention on a few occasions stories of being a female in a very male world, decadron overnight delivery and shared some stories of things she had to put up with at the time, decadron overnight delivery as being the only woman at her level.   There were other things we didn’t talk about too much, decadron overnight delivery but things she and I both understood. Karen had been in a long term relationship with another woman, decadron overnight delivery whom she spoke of rarely, decadron overnight delivery more or less in passing.  She had mentioned to me she had joined the club not long after her break up with her partner. I can’ t remember how long exactly they had been together. Decadron overnight delivery They had been together quite a while. Decadron overnight delivery To Karen, decadron overnight delivery the break up was pretty abrupt and unexpected.  One afternoon I was over helping Karen get the upstairs cleaned up in her home. Decadron overnight delivery   We were cleaning in the bathroom, decadron overnight delivery and I went to unplug a curling iron sitting on the counter which curiously was on, decadron overnight delivery but Karen didn’t use a curling iron.  She stopped me before I could turn it off.   The curling iron belonged to her ex and Karen kept it plugged in and turned on since the day her partner left  some years before. The curling iron stayed on until Karen died.  For some reason, decadron overnight delivery this has remained with me. I remember the ex partner failing to make it over to visit Karen when she was ill, decadron overnight delivery or when she was dying.  That has remained with me as well. Ironically, decadron overnight delivery if irony is the word, decadron overnight delivery it seemed to be the chapter in Karen’s life which brought her to the club, decadron overnight delivery and to us for a time being.    In the eleventh hour of Karen’s time here, decadron overnight delivery she even managed to make us laugh. Decadron overnight delivery Two nights before Karen passed, decadron overnight delivery our crew of friends were over trying to help Karen get things as situated as possible.  Before the illness took over, decadron overnight delivery Karen was always very organized and orderly. Decadron overnight delivery   However, decadron overnight delivery as the illness progressed and her body weakened, decadron overnight delivery she was less physically able, decadron overnight delivery needless to say to move up and down the stairs to get things done.    By this point, decadron overnight delivery Karen was bed ridden, decadron overnight delivery on oxygen full time and extremely weak.     We were searching for the title papers for one of her Vespas which she was giving to her niece and nephews.   As the search was proving unsuccessful, decadron overnight delivery Karen was becoming frustrated to the point that she exclaimed the best she could, decadron overnight delivery “I’m not going anywhere until we find those papers!” While we finally found the papers and she felt at ease, decadron overnight delivery we teased with Karen that, decadron overnight delivery if she was not going to leave, decadron overnight delivery then there was no reason in finding them.  I’m glad Karen came to see me the other morning, decadron overnight delivery if only in my dreams. Decadron overnight delivery It prompted me take her memory off the ’shelf ‘and pay tribute to a wonderful person and spirit, decadron overnight delivery who was incredibly full of life and enthusiasm while she was here.  Karen lived by her own standards and passions, decadron overnight delivery fell deeply in love with a woman at a time and in a working world where it was anything but fashionable, decadron overnight delivery and she fought her illness as hard as she fought her opponents on the court.   She held the bone cancer at bay for a while too - longer than many. Decadron overnight delivery    There was one point during her illness that she was feeling better, decadron overnight delivery the chemo was ‘working’, decadron overnight delivery and she would take her beloved Vespa out for a spin and would drive to the club to watch the drop in doubles on the weekend. Decadron overnight delivery   I remember Saturday she was there.  She mentioned to me how incredible it was to smell the cut grass as she was driving over that morning.  She had tears in her eyes when she talked.  Whenever I smell fresh cut grass, decadron overnight delivery I always think of Karen. Decadron overnight delivery And after writing this, decadron overnight delivery I’m reminded to remember her when the tennis can whistles.  Love you Karen. Decadron overnight delivery