On to the next chapter | AspenTimes.com

On to the next chapter

Dear Editor:

I am weathering bittersweet waves of memories of a place I must leave now. For the past seven months, I have been in a place that feels like heaven. The vistas from my windows have sometimes been majestic mountains covered in fresh-fallen snow. Sometimes they are lush landscapes of streams trailing down green velvet meadows. I have hiked up winding paths beside rushing rivers surrounded by aspen trees under beautiful blue skies.

I have known angels disguised as doctors and nurses. They have been beside me every step of the way and never let me fall. These angels have healed my body and nourished and lifted my soul. They are always encouraging and loving, with a kind of mother’s love, and seem to have all the time in the world to bestow upon me.

When I have struggled, they have helped me triumph. They have fluffed my pillows and covered me in warm blankets when I was cold. When I was hurting, they held my hand, and their kindness was a soothing balm to my pain. They have comforted me with sweet and compassionate words when I was terrified.

I have doubled over in laughter at their jokes when I needed cheering up. When I have wept, they have dried my tears. They have washed my clothes when medicine had soiled them … on Valentine’s Day … when their valentine was waiting for them. Never hurrying me. Only lavishing attention on me. When it was time to celebrate they rejoiced and did the happy dance with me.

There is a special angel named Jack. He created a caring and loving refuge that he lets people live in when their lives have been shattered and they need a place to stay. He’s there often himself making sure everything is perfect and thinking of ways to sustain and make this beautiful paradise even better. He’s kind of a saint, but he’d never let you think he is anyone special. Oh, but he is. Just ask anyone who has been blessed to stay in his home. It is a place you can go to find peace when your world is falling apart.

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You would probably think that after seven months of being treated for cancer I’d want to get home as fast as I could. But this heaven I have been describing has been epically wondrous and leaving seems sad. So I leave now with tears in my eyes … restoring tears of inexplicable joy, and a sweet sadness.

How can I ever adequately say what is in my heart to all these angels who have been floating around me for these many months? I wish I could find the words. I will just have to say thank you from my heart. I am filled with gratitude as I wave good-bye to all the angels and saints in this little bit of heaven that is The Shaw Cancer Center and to Jack’s Place in Edwards, Colo.

You will be missed.

Nancy Taylor

Aspen