Forced Slow Down


slow down

There are times when life throw you stuff. Then it often throw more stuff at you. That’s how it goes. Life’s little challenger course, so to speak.

With the recent death of my father, I’ve had plenty of time grieving, and yet at the same time I’ve kept up my normal pace of life. Jumping right back in mid-stream. With two west coast trips in less than a month, much of my down time has oddly been spent on planes across the country. After superwoman like capabilities of dealing with everything that there was to handle in Eugene, both physically and emotionally, I came back to a slight nose dive back into the realities of my life in DC. Then I picked right back up and kept running.

So it turns out that I needed a bit more of a break that that. The Universe is sending its message clearly, slow your jets down, as my mom would say.

I was given a call back about a mole that was removed, ironically on the day I learned of my father’s death. It turned out to be as suspicious as we thought, melanoma creeping up in the form of an otherwise cute freckle on my thigh. Had I not been aware of the dangers, with my fair and freckled skin, it could have been drastically worse. I’ve been consistent with dermatologist check ups, even when I haven’t bothered to get a primary doctor in the last ten years. Having recently had my annual skin check, I was lucky that I had to go in for a repeat biopsy on another mole and pointed out this little guy. Had I waited until my next annual appointment, I would have had full blown cancer.

So I feel thankful for being on top of changes in my body, and having noted the tiny, otherwise seemingly friendly mole that had recently appeared.

Even this wasn’t really enough to slow me down. At first I thought it was just going to be a quick re-biopsy and a few stitches. I even planned it for just before heading to California for Memorial Day. I figured I could plan on hiking a bit slower this year.

This, of course, turned out to be full on surgery instead. I went and had the operation on Friday, and have been in a bit of a post-surgery fog since then. I’m reminded of the importance of friends, family, and neighbors, and how important it is to cultivate these relationships. They are particularly helpful when you need them, and are noticeably missing when they are needed and aren’t nearby.

Tomorrow I head out into the big wide world and will have to remind myself with each step to take it at least at half time walking. My standard pace around the city is ridiculously fast. According to one walking website, my pace far exceeded their “very speedy walker” category.

Today I walked past an older gentleman who was walking about my same, now reduced, pace. I was reminded of how fortunate I am that I’m normally so mobile.

So as I head out into the world, it will be with a renewed appreciation for what I have and for the health that I’ve fostered. I find it ironic that sometimes the most appreciation comes from the worst of events. I guess it just goes to show what we should be thankful for, even when life throws us stuff.



  1. Darcy Cronin on June 8, 2011 at 3:05 pm

    Sorry you had to slow down for such circumstances, but I’m sure glad you caught it when you did…I’m here for you, but you have get your butt back to pdx to make my offer truly valid…phone therapy can only get you so far in life 😉

  2. Darcy Cronin on June 8, 2011 at 3:07 pm

    So sorry that you had to slow down for such circumstances, but I’m sure glad you caught it earlier. I couldn’t imagine my life without you…I’m also tired of not having you close, you’re so right that having family and friends near by is what matters…phone therapy can only go so far…

  3. Anonymous on June 9, 2011 at 2:35 pm

    THX for sharing

  4. TNTINGLEY on September 28, 2011 at 12:00 pm

    I just happened upon your blog. Goodness, you do lead an interesting life. I wish I could go to Africa but age and finances will both keep me from filling that item on my bucket list.

  5. Ms. Miel on September 28, 2011 at 2:19 pm

    Tingley – Thanks for your comment, and the reminder. Sometimes it is easy to loose sight of how unique my life really is. I’m always grateful for those moments when I’m reminded.

    Good luck with your bucket list, in the mean time you can live vicariously through other adventures like myself. 🙂



Leave a Comment