The series of three images just posted were taken on the shore of Lake Michigan, not far from Navy Pier in Chicago. My husband was attending a conference there and I tagged along.

It was a stormy day, the wind was howling and it was raining intermittently. Standing was a challenge, as was holding my camera still. At first I was disappointed that these shots turned out so out of focus, but the more I lived with them, the more pleased I was. They reflect the feeling of the day so much better than if they had been sharp.

They foreshadowed an upcoming storm in my life: three weeks after this trip I had surgery to remove a large tumor that revealed I had ovarian cancer. Three weeks after that surgery I had another (surprise!) surgery to drain fluid from around my heart and to test it to see if the cancer had spread. Thankfully it had not, and my diagnosis was stage 1, quite a lucky break since ovarian cancer is most often found at a later stage.

Nearly a year later, I’ve gone through chemotherapy and am returning to normal, but not nearly as fast as I’d like! I have no evidence of disease. It’s now a mental game to not let dark thoughts creep in, and most the time I do pretty well since I tend to be an optimistic person by nature. Every day is a gift and to be lived to the fullest and enjoyed!