Room with a View

We have made a lot of great stops on this trip. A lot of them weren’t planned. They just came upon us, invited us, and we accepted the invitation. This particular stop was certainly unexpected and we tried like hell to not accept the invitation but it wasn’t one we could say ‘no’ to. Alas, the picture above is from my room at Wentworth Douglass Hospital where I spent a night recovering from bilateral mastectomies due to a second round of breast cancer.


Damn! Who saw that one coming? Thanks to my fully functioning defense mechanisms, a lot of the experience seemed profoundly unreal. I recall being in pre-op when the 10th person (or so it seemed) asked me my name, date of birth and why I was there. The words, ‘bilateral mastectomies with right sentinel node resection’ came out of my mouth as if I were reading a story aloud – someone else’s story.

Sister Angel

Luckily, I was surrounded by angels in human and spirit form. My trusty fellow traveller, Larry, was a rock star. Friends and family showered me with gifts and prayers. Reiki practitioners, internet based Christian prayer groups, Buddhists, and Atheists all chipped in and I felt like I was held in a nest of love. And, in fact, I was! The staff at Wentworth Douglass Hospital were unfailingly kind, respectful and capable. God love them all for showing up like that when I know how hard their work is.

Luckily, my recovery has been uncomplicated and I feel better than I have in a long while. I was profoundly shocked when I heard that I needed 6 weeks of radiation. How dare this interfere with our travel plans! I moaned about that for a good while and then got bored with the pity party. It’s good to get a good kick in the pants every once in a while about my illusions about control. Well, maybe ‘good’ isn’t the right word. Maybe ‘necessary’ is more accurate.

Hiding the drainage tubes

Well, I’d be lying if I said that I’ll miss this adventure when it is over. But, hard times sure do bring me close to the important things in life. I am ever so grateful for family and friends, for my surgeon and oncologists, for Mother Nature and for the love that holds us all.

By the time you get our next post, I hope to be telling you that our house has sold, my treatments are over and that we are on the road again in Shiny. Who knows??


  1. Damn! That sucks! I’m so sorry to hear about this hiccup. Sending you healing vibes and prayers.

  2. Sue, I had no idea you were going through this! Wishing you a speedy recovery and I will be saying prayers for you. I need to hear more Shiny adventures, will be waiting for you to get back on the road. Hugs!

  3. So beautifully written and the photos are perfect. Thank you for sharing your journey with us, we’re hangin’ on every shiny word!

  4. Susan, I’m so sorry you’re going through this, especially during the best Airstreaming time of year! I hope this treatment will fly by, and you’ll be back feeling better than ever! We’ll raise a glass full of strenghtening thoughts to you next weekend in Randolph!

    1. Thanks, Mary. I hope that I have my pink flamingo pants on when the gang toasts me – I need to channel all of that great Airstream love!

  5. I’ve been wondering what you two are up to, since I haven’t heard from you in awhile. This is not what I expected to read when I opened your post.

    But I am glad to know that your surgery is behind you and that you’ve been so well cared for. You look great, and your spirit is shiny bright! Take good care, and we hope to be seeing you down the road.

    1. Thanks so much, Laurel. And I hope to see you and Raven on some dusty trail in the near future

  6. Susie, you are one of the most incredible people I have ever met, I’m sure you and your sidekick wil be zooming along those highways as soon as you can. Sending love and healing thoughts.

    1. Well, thank you for your kind words, Janet. Yes! Onward, but first, I need to get to know some registration clerks and X Ray techs a little better.

  7. You are bright light! Your luminosity just keeps growing! I’m so glad for the opportunity to get to know you!

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