Life Happens All At Once

One thing I’ve learned over the past few years is that life happens all at once.  Life has a tendency to be complicated and unexpected and not really what you had planned. Good times happen in the middle of bad times and bad times happen in the middle of good times.  We like to think we have some level of control.  We like to think that we know what’s going to happen next but just when we think we do, there’s a sharp corner that we didn’t see coming.  Life just unfolds in front of us and all we can ever really do is roll along with it, doing the best we can to take care of the people we love along the way.  It’s messy and wonderful and happy and sad all at once.  And as my Dad would say, “it’s just part of it”

And maybe the trick to it all is to figure out how to take it all in.  To not get so stuck in the bad stuff that you miss out on the good stuff that is still happening. And to not take the good stuff for granted, thinking the bad stuff will never come around again, and end up not even realizing that your in the middle of the good stuff.

It’s a crazy life and the only thing you can do, as Mom has said many times the past 10 days, “is just keep on living”.

So here’s a few things that have happened since the race.

Casey, Anne and I had the chance to take an unexpected road trip to meet a really amazing lady and a really special horse.


Me, Anne, Amberley Snyder and Wrangler

We are so glad we had the opportunity but one thing we did learn is that neither Casey nor I can see well in the dark and so we probably should not take road trips together that involve night driving.


A pit stop at McDonalds in honor of Dad. It’s his favorite road trip stop

“Is that the exit? No, I’m sure that’s not the exit.  Oh…oh wait…it might have been the exit. Yep, yep that was the exit.  No…no you’re not in the right lane, quick switch lanes… maybe that was the right lane..”

We made it though…by the grace of God we made it.

Then there was the phone call from a Dr, saying, “I’m really sorry but that polyp I told you was definitely nothing….well it’s definitely something…it’s definitely colon cancer and you definitely have to have surgery.”

Mom hung up the phone and said, “Well hell!” and then she proceeded to do what she always does, which is whatever needs to be done.  She paid the bills, scheduled appointments, made sure the grandkids understood and were ok, cooked dinner and drank the damn clean out concoction two more times.  Jamie and Casey wanted to pull out of the horse race, it just seemed silly now, and everyone wanted to cancel all sorts of plans but Mom said “Oh no you’re not.  We are all going to keep on living.  It’s nothing but a bump in the road.”

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It’s actually a bit more than that – to say the least – but you can’t keep a good cowgirl down for long.


She had the help of Feel Better Bear from Alex and her Dammit Doll from Sharon.  And both have been used extensively over the past few days, let me tell you.


Feel Better Bear


Dammit Doll Whenever things don’t go so well, And you want to hit the wall and yell, Here’s a little dammit doll, That you can’t do without, Just grasp it firmly by the legs and find a place to slam it. And as you sack the stuffing out yell “Dammit! Dammit! Dammit!”

And in midst of scans and surgery there were cattle to move.





And horses to ride.


And fish to clean.


And ice cream to make.


And a crew to feed.


Thank you Tarver and Sally! That was the best ribs and dirty rice ever!

And the Forth of July to celebrate.

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And then just when you think you’ve found a new groove and things are settling in…..Toga gets bit by a rattlesnake.


She looked a bit like a cartoon dog for a couple of days. Thank goodness for rattlesnake vaccine! And Dr. Jane!

We wanted Toga and Mom to share a room but apparently the Wyoming Medical Center frowns on dogs as patients.  So Mom was at WMC and Toga was at Rocky Mountain Animal Hospital.

They are both home now and – knock on wood – seem to be recovering well so far.

See what I mean.  All at once.  It all happens all at once, the good, the bad, the maddening and the wonderful stuff all comes rushing at you.  We might wish it happened one thing at a time but it just doesn’t.  All you can do is try your best to enjoy it, no matter how messy it gets.

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Now if we can just get through Fair week in one piece…..

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3 Responses to Life Happens All At Once

  1. Liam Rooney says:

    A very inspiring post. Sending prayers and healing thoughts your Mom’s way.

  2. Tara says:

    Thank you for writing! It brings so much meaning to your daily struggles & triumphs. I really enjoy it & will be sending a quick prayer for your family.

  3. Pingback: My Mom is a Rock Star! | Pretty Work

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