The Best Friend Ever

Take a look at this woman. Her name is Sheri Mylius. She should never be allowed to buy herself another restaurant meal or ever buy another drink forever. She donated her kidney today so her good friend Glenda Nickle could live a normal life. We all wish we had a friend like her. Thank you, Sheri from everyone who knows and loves Glenda for your gift of life.


Glenda’s Favorite Day

Today is a very, very good day, or as Glenda, quoting Winnie the Pooh said this morning, “Today is my favorite day”. Glenda Nickle got a new kidney today. She is in recovering from the surgery in ICU and indications are all is well.
This is a culmination of a yearlong nightmare that began last year when she suffered a heart attack and then had terrible complications. She cheated death 25 times since then thanks to miracle after miracle performed by the medical team at Memorial Hermann Hospital. Gayle and I had a ringside seat during this ordeal. When it started we were dealing with our own medical challenge in the hospital right next door, but Gayle was able to recover and we could go on with our lives. Not so for Glenda and Norman. She had to suffer through multiple procedures and surgeries just to stay alive. She was certainly a trooper and Norman was her rock. I’m pretty sure they are closer now than they have ever been.
Even with all the miracles performed during this time the doctors couldn’t save Glenda’s kidneys. She suffered acute kidney failure due to extreme blood loss. Sometimes the kidneys are able to recover from acute failure, but not so in her case. The trauma was too great. So began life tethered to a dialysis machine. Glenda of course was glad to be alive, but her life was severely restricted. She learned to live being uncomfortable all the time. It was quite a strain. She couldn’t really enjoy herself to the fullest.
That all changes beginning today. The whole Nickle clan can now really recover. Today is a very, very good day. Like Glenda said, today is my favorite day.

Nothing says Jew Like a Yarmlke

Shalom everybody. Jim the Honorary Jew here. I am now writing for a decidedly smaller audience after my thoughtful and reasoned essay on the state of American politics. Can you believe some people thought my words were that of a spoiled little nine year old girl? Go figure. I’m now waiting for the contract offer for my expert political analysis from CNN.
Okay, now I can get back to the business of reporting on the heritage of my grandchildren. The other cool thing that happened since I last was allowed to use the computer was that my good friends Chuck Cole and Danna Cole visited the Holy Land and they brought me back a present. They didn’t bring back a present for anyone else, so that just proves my writings are having an impact on all 11 of my remaining Facebook friends. I am now the very proud owner of my very own yarmulke! How cool is that?
There is nothing that says Jew like wearing a yarmulke (which is pronounced yamaka) or yamaka, or Yamika, or Kippa, or Kippah, or Kippot, or Yarmulkah, or Jarmulka, or skullcap. All things Jewish seem to have multiple names or spellings (there are 16 ways to spell Hanukkah, or Chanukah, or…. [Oh, by the way, most things Jewish have at least two common names due to the prevalence of both the Yiddish and Hebrew translations, but I digress]). If you see a guy walking down the street with a Yarmulke it’s a pretty good chance he is Jewish (actually, if you see a guy walking down the street wearing a Yarmulke in my hometown there’s a pretty good chance he is lost and wandered into town by mistake). It is a statement of both religion and heritage. “Hey, look at me. I’m a really Jewy Jew.” That’s not exactly what it means, but it can be perceived that way by folks not familiar with the traditions and customs of the Tribe.
Wearing a head covering isn’t a Jewish law, it is a custom. It was first mentioned in Exodus (not the book by Leon Uris or the movie starring Charlton Heston [that Charlton Heston; he was the Mark Wahlberg of his era]). In Exodus, high priests wore head coverings to remind them that God exists and monitors our behaviors. That’s why Yarmulkes are worn in Synagogue. When you think about God you should be wearing a yarmulke. One rule of thumb offered by a famous Rabbi is you shouldn’t walk more than four cubits (I now know that a cubit is about six feet) from your home without one, so you have the opportunity to think about God (I’ve got mine on now. I may want to think about God within four cubits of the TV because the Cowboys are now playing and they may need some help).
So Jews put on a hat to cover their heads when they want to show reverence. Almost all other religions and cultural customs require one to remove head coverings to show respect. It certainly sets us apart from the mainstream, causes some ridicule, and can lead to other, more nefarious concerns. The head covering thing really wasn’t a thing outside of Synagogue until the middle ages in middle Europe when it became a local Jewish custom to wear a pointy hat as a way to show others their adherence to their faith. The Christian-dominated governments actually liked that idea so much they made specific laws requiring Jews wear distinctive head coverings so they could more easily identified and discriminated against. We all know where that led.
Wearing a yarmulke is a way to show respect for God, display your pride in your Jewishness and it can help you in your actions. It’s worth is similar to a wedding ring. The ring shows the world you are married and reminds you you are married and shouldn’t do unmarried things. A yarmulke is a reminder to the world and you that you are Jewish and should not do ungodly things because God is aware of your actions. Of course that leads to parables. Like that of the little Jewish boy who had a tendency to take things that weren’t his. He was instructed to wear his yarmulke as a reminder that God was watching. He did well with his mild OCD behaviors while he wore the skullcap, but had bad thoughts that he couldn’t control and led to a little more kleptomania when a gust of wind took it away.
As mentioned before, wearing a yarmulke is not a law, but a custom. It also isn’t against Jewish laws for a woman to wear one, but it’s usually not the custom. In the past 20 -30 years women have begun to wear them to make a statement about their religion and their rights as equals. In fact women have been traditionally exempt from wearing them. Remember, wearing one helps you think deep thoughts about God. According to tradition, women are already closer to God for two reasons; 1. They can have children (damn, can’t argue that one), 2. Women are naturally more intuitive about Godly things and don’t need the constant reminder (really?).
Yarmulke size, fabric and styles are not a function of theology as much as culture. There are representations of different sects, regions, and movements displayed by the yarmulke you choose. There are some rules of thumb, though. The bigger and blacker the cap, the more conservatively religious you likely are. Knitted, crocheted and leather skullcaps usually denote conservative or orthodox views. And conversely, the smaller and more colorful ones usually denote reformed and more liberal sects. There are no steadfast rules, other than it can’t be offensive (except for Heredis; they are like the Jehovah’s Witnesses of Judaism). My yarmulke is white with aqua stitching and a Star of David on top. It is really cool looking and I look Jewishly intelligent when I have it on.
Yarmulkes are relatively cheap. You can buy one for a couple of dollars. In fact, the most expensive one I could find only cost $28. But as I was searching I found some that I thought were odd. You can buy a yarmulke, the the symbol of your closeness to God and your practice in humility, with a Cubs logo on it. No kidding!! I’ll show you. I have pictures.
So ends another chapter of the ongoing saga of honoring my grandchildren’s heritage. Each time I pick a subject I learn more than I think I will, and I always end up with more respect for the religion of my sons’-in-law and their families.

P.S. When I get my new CNN gig I promise to wear my cool new yarmulke during my first interview.



The 2016 Election, or; I Didn’t Know Pigs could Fly

Shalom everyone. Jim the Honorary Jew here. This little tome is a bit different from my regular JHJ soliloquies. It started as the introduction of another post dealing with Jewish laws and traditions that is almost ready for prime time. But after consulting my senior editors I have decided to let this part stand alone. After you have read it there is a 50/50 chance you will unfriend me and you won’t have to read what comes next.
You haven’t heard from me lately because I’ve been busy watching every minute of the presidential campaign on cable TV. I took it on like a science project, gathering slanted information from all three cable news outlets, consolidating responses and formulating conclusions. Oh, I had my favorites, but I must admit I watched them all. It was a lot like an addict watching porn. You know it’s going to cause long term damage, but you just can’t turn away. I was watching a slow motion wreck involving two garbage trucks, and I loved it! But then the unthinkable happened. My side lost. It was almost as bad as when the Cowboys lost the playoff game two years ago because of a bad call by the refs. Okay, it turned out to be the correct call, but they still lost and I’m still mad.
Since the results were announced at 3:00 AM on that Wednesday (of course I was watching) I have been trying to formulate a succinct argument that would demonstrate the faulty logic of the other side and lead them into the light. I have consulted individuals and experts from both sides of the political spectrum to further this quest. I then utilized my acerbic wit, logic and intelligence to craft a response befitting this conundrum while also keeping in mind the appropriate parsimony of an Occum’s razor response. I am pretty sure I’ve succinctly captured the sentiment of all eight Democrats in Victoria County with this retort, so here it is:


So there!

Enjoy the Elevator Music of your Children

Last night Gayle Kelly Foos and I went to see the Righteous Brothers in concert, or more appropriately, “The Righteous Brother and the guy who took the place of the Righteous Brother who died”. I am not a really big fan of the genre but we went because the couple with whom we are in Vegas are big fans. This type of rock and roll dates back to the early 60’s and ended with the invasion of the Beatles and the Stones. The brother act (even before Bobby Hatfield died they weren’t really brothers) broke up for awhile and then Branson was invented and poof, they are popular again. It really helped that their two biggest hits came after they broke up and then reunited and were attached to very popular movies. Unchained Melody was made more famous by the movie “Ghost” and Time of my Life was written for “Dirty Dancing”. The remaining brother, Bill Medley, is 76 years old, and let me tell you he can move, even without a walker.
The crowd could perhaps be best described as as the silver set. I swear I thought I was in God’s waiting room or the lobby of a cinema in St Petersburg. The number of walkers lined up at the door could have been mistaken for Bingo day at the “home”. They were elderly, but enthusiastic. When the Brothers sang “Time of my Life” every one of the audience was able to close his or her eyes and make that famous leap from the movie into each others’ arms. And, as much I hate to say it, I recalled every word of every song and sang along.
Their second number was their first hit, “Little Latin Lupe Lou”. All of a sudden I was transported back to early adolescence. My friends John Yeradi, Mike Ide and Randy Holiperick had just started one of the first garage bands in La Crosse, Kansas and one of the first songs they first learned was Lupe Lou. The band was named “Shades of Tomorrow” and they were certainly the toast of the town. I was so envious because I had absolutely no musical talent and people paid to see them perform at the City Auditorium. Heck, they even had a groupie, pretty Karen Steen. But I also had immense pride that I was friends with the band who were so obviously talented and were going to be hugely famous.
The concert reminded me everyone has the time of their life when they were young and the world was at our fingertips. We hold onto those thoughts and feelings forever. The music of our time foments a visceral response and brings back those feelings with intensity. And remember, as Bill Medley reminded his audience, the kick-ass rock and roll of your youth that was a symbol of independence, ambition and rebellion will definitely be the elevator the music of your children and grandchildren.
Go to a concert and enjoy yourself!

The Curse of Being the The Second Child

Happy birthday to Lindsey Foos Lebowitz, my youngest daughter. She is 34 years old today. Can you believe that? Today she is a Master’s educated married career woman mother of two beautiful boys. I’m so proud of her I almost burst with pride just typing this.
She is our second child so when she came along we were old hands at parenting. Her mother and I were better able to experience major milestones in the moment instead of wasting film. Like when Lindsey was looking through old photographs of her childhood. There were enough pictures of her older sister’s first 2 years of life that we almost needed a storage locker to keep them all, but not quite as many of her. She asked to see pictures of her 1st birthday and was somewhat miffed for some reason when we tried to pawn off pictures of her favorite cousin’s 1st birthday party as her own. To be fair, she was in the picture. She has almost forgiven us for that one.
In that tradition her mother and I have decided to wish her a very special birthday by traveling to Las Vegas instead of being a big bother and visiting her. Oh, your present didn’t quite get in the mail before we left. I promise we will take a picture of it, though. Love you always and have a very special birthday.

Mom and Dad

Kosher is as Kosher Does

Shalom everyone. Jim the Honorary Jew here. We are in the middle of the High Holy Days of Rosh Hashanah. This is like Super Bowl Week of Jewish holidays ending in the big game of Yom Kipper. You can probably hear the shofars being blown (for all you uninformed acolytes, a shofar is a hollowed out ram’s horn blown during Jewish festivals). Since this marks the beginning of the Jewish New Year I thought I should write about……..staying Kosher. In reality, I was was going to write about the High Holy Days, but it seems a little too callous and glib to write a shallow and mostly uninformed tome about the holiest of holy days of Judaism. Whereas Kosher origins and practices, now that’s something I can sink my teeth into.
Where do I start? Well, let me tell you why I chose to write about this subject. I was sitting in front of the TV readying to worship at the alter of THE…. National..Football..League, eating a bacon, egg and cheese breakfast burrito (definitely not even close to Kosher on so many levels, as it turns out) with just the right amount of salsa verde that just lightly blisters the back of your throat on the way down, when there was a commercial for Hebrew National hot dogs. I had only a cursory knowledge about Kosher practices, but I did work in a slaughterhouse for a short period of time (it convinced me I really needed to go to college). You really don’t want to know how hot dogs are made. I thought, “How can you make those things Kosher?” The other thought I had, was that the laws governing Kosher practices must have been written before the invention of bacon.
In the interest of full disclosure, I am a member of the Bacon Nation. I once stumbled into a donut shop that served bacon bits on a maple donut and thought I found God’s waiting room portal with a pastry made exclusively for the Chosen. I knew enough about Kosher rules to know that a major portion of the breakfast meat selection of the Golden Corral breakfast buffet was roped off from the Tribe, so I began my research project with a skeptical view of an ancient practice that perhaps had no place in the modern world. I began this journey to better understand beliefs and traditions of half of my grandchildren’s heritage. If you’ve read any of my rantings in the past you know that both of my daughters married Jewish men, so my grandchildren are half Jewish. I stated I would observe these beliefs and traditions and by observe I meant just watch. Being Kosher is one of the reasons for this rule. But after having researched the subject I can better understand why it is an enduring cultural and religious practice. (Man, what a long and windy intro).
A Kosher food is one that is accepted by Jewish law as fit for eating and drinking. It is a process of food production that adheres to dietary guidelines set forth in the Torah. It emphasizes holy blessing, kindness to animals, self control, attention to detail in everything that matters, and thinking before acting. Kosher literally means fit or proper and is associated with cleanliness. Okay, so far so good. I can live with that.
There are some pretty strict guidelines for a food to be labeled as Kosher. You can’t just slip a Rabbi a $50 and have him bless a ham sandwich (so much for my idea). There are organizations that certify foods and food preparation processes as Kosher. It’s a big deal and costs companies lots of money to get the kosher label. The rules are are very strict. They are much more strict than the FDA or the USDA. Our truth in labeling laws allow that if an ingredient makes up less than 2% of the product by weight or volume it doesn’t have to be listed separately on the label. To be Kosher, there is no tolerance; only zero = zero in the Kosher world. Some USDA inspections are waived for butchers and slaughterhouses that pass the inspections for the Kosher designation.
Where did these guidelines come from? That’s pretty easy. They came from the Torah. Anyone can look them up (look in Leviticus). Why were they written? There is no “why” written anywhere in religious teachings. Jews should follow the dietary laws because God said so (that’s where I must have gotten my parenting skills). Just looking at them , they do look like ancient rules to improve tribal survival though sanitary practices, making Moses the first Secretary of Health and Human Services. When these laws were written, the Tribe was likely a small tribe. It must have given them a great leg up on other tribes in the area to not be struck with illnesses due to salmonella outbreaks. Can you say trichinosis? (Okay, there may be a good reason to reconsider bacon.) But Jews believe that isn’t and shouldn’t be the reason to remain Kosher. Jews should remain Kosher because God said so. More on this later.
Here are the seven rules of Kosher eating:
1. Certain animals are forbidden. The general rules are: no predators, swine, camels, hares, birds of prey, scavengers or rock badgers (really). Only fish with scales and fins can be consumed (no shellfish or eels. Luckily for sushi eaters, mercury poisoning wasn’t a thing back then). No insects (remember that locust thing).
2. Animals that can be eaten must be slaughtered in a proscribed manner that is humane. Meat must be inspected for lesions on internal organs and can’t be consumed if there are any. (This one seems like a good one to me).
3. All blood must be drained from the meat. There is a mandatory procedure for rinsing and salting (remember, these laws were written before you could get an Amana side-by-side at the local Sears).
4. Certain parts and organs of animals can’t be consumed (no mad cow disease?)
5. Meat and dairy must be separate. ( I thought that rule didn’t make much sense, but it turns out that iron from meat and calcium from dairy are absorbed better if consumed separately. This was only discovered about 75 years ago. Who knew?)
6. Utensils that come into contact with meat can’t come into contact with dairy. This isn’t just silverware and plates, but pots, pans, and even the kitchen sink and dishwasher. All equipment must be cleaned properly. (Folks with OCD tendencies really love this one).
7. Grape products made by non-Jews can’t be consumed. (Now I understand the popularity of Manischewitz. I bet none of Bill Cosby’s ‘dates’ observed Kosher rules.)
These laws were very important for healthy living from the beginning of time up until just a few years ago and in some parts of the world they have validity even today. But we do have modern refrigeration and cleanliness standards that negate the need for most of these tenets (that separate meat from dairy thing still gets me, though). Religious Jewish scholars, however, still advocate for strict adherence. It shows your obedience to God. A Rabbi by the name of Donin, who seems to be a lot smarter than me, wrote a whole book on this subject. He suggested that observing traditional dietary laws is good practice for being a good person. It’s good practice for distinguishing right from wrong, good from evil, pure from defiled, and sacred from profane. Imposing these rules ingrains self control even over our most basic primal instincts. Wow, that’s a mouthful, so to speak.
So if you want to practice being a good person, one way is to follow traditional Jewish dietary practices. I want to be a good person, but bacon is really crack (ask any lapsed Vegan). I guess I can only strive to be a non-bad person. I still think I’ll just be observing (watching) this one.

A Love Story

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May 25, 2016

Today Gayle and I celebrate our 42nd anniversary (Foos Family; established, 1974). Happy anniversary too my sweetheart! I love you. Can you believe that we’ve been married over twice as long as we haven’t? We share a delusion in which we spy someone our own age and both agree that they look much older than we do. That is a pretty good pastime that you can only share with someone you’ve known forever. So let’s get one thing straight: It’s all Gayle’s fault. First, you wouldn’t be reading this if she hadn’t signed me up on FB because I kept bugging her to see what was going on in Facebook world. Who knew I would write tomes every so often. When I’m not working, I try to limit the number of words I speak per day to about 88. I usually don’t have to worry about going over the limit. And yet, when I have something to say on FB the sky is the limit. Okay, back to the story.

If you know us you probably know we met when we were 15. Gayle says that I was after her friend, and that was partly true. Gayle and her girlfriend, Debbie Parker (the good looking redhead) were glamorously eating French Fries with mustard at the local drug store lunch counter. Donnie Rogers was hot for the redhead and talked me into going with him to try to pick her up. I think he brought me along to show how tall and handsome he was, like standing with the ugly girls at the prom so you look better. When I saw Gayle daintily dipping her fries in the mustard I was hooked. Although you could blame Donnie for that one, its was really Gayle’s fault for being there and being so cute.

Now, fast forward a few years. We didn’t go together all that time between the great Drug Store liaison and getting married at the ripe old age of 20. She went off to college without me. So it was her fault I followed her and enrolled in school a year later. And it was definitely her fault we got married. She said yes, after all. Since then our marriage has been a series of great adventures we have experienced together. How many of you have lived in eight states and not been in the Witness Protection Program?

It is absolutely her fault I earned a doctorate. She supported and encouraged me to pursue my goals and she typed my dissertation (I definitely don’t recommend that. Ask her how to spell “appendix” without the benefit of the search and replace option in the very early word processors).
Of course it was her fault we had children. Look at that picture. She was hotter than Debbie Parker! And it was her fault they grew up healthy and happy. I was gone a lot with my job. She often described her life as a single mother with money. I got to be the fun Dad who came home and played on the weekends. Now both Michon and Lindsey have their own families, Master’s degrees and careers. I would love to take credit for that but it’s really all Gayle’s fault.

It’s also her fault our grandchildren think their grandparents are pretty hot stuff. She makes sure we FaceTime often, visit whenever we can, and always bring presents.
And we’re still married. Today Gayle holds down three full-time jobs. She is an awesome realtor. She also is Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Office at James A. Foos, Psy.D. & Associates. But her most difficult full-time job is taking care of me. I guess I’ll keep her for our next adventure.

Passover: The Memorial Day of Jewish Holidays

Shalom everyone and happy Passover from Jim the Honorary Jew. Passover actually started last night at dusk. This is one of the big ones as far as Jewish holidays go. Well, not The big one, but more like Memorial Day as opposed to the 4th of July. This is the celebration of the Jews liberation from slavery in Egypt. Like most of our holidays, this one lasts a few days (a week for reformed and 1 extra day for Orthodox because they need that extra day to get all the praying in and make up for the reformers). We Jews (and honorary Jews) like to get the most out of all the holidays.
We all watched Charleton Heston lead the Tribe out of Egypt in the movie Exodus, so most of us have heard of Passover. It sometimes falls near Easter, so most Christians think it probably think it has something to do with Jesus, but with some kind of Jewish twist. And Seder, which was celebrated last night, is probably just Easter dinner without ham. That would be wrong. Some of us would know (if we looked it up in Wickepdia) that Passover refers to the last of the 10 plagues that God used on the Egyptians to help them make up their minds that slavery wasn’t such a good idea. The tenth plague was the death of every Egyptian first-born son. Israelites marked their doorsteps with lamb’s blood so God would pass over their houses. Then, when it was time to leave Egypt, the Israelites didn’t even have time to wait for their bread to rise, so they ate unleavened bread, just like during Seder.
So there you go; another very interesting story marking my grandchildren’s Jewish heritage. So when you see one of your Jewish friends at work or school this week you can wow him or her with your encyclopedic (or Wickapedic) knowledge of Jewish tradition. Of course they may be off work in celebration and you will just have to be jealous. Until next time, Shalom from Jim the Honorary Jew.

The Best Christmas Present Ever

Thanks to everyone that sent us good wishes about Gayle’s successful cancer treatment. We didn’t tell many people because we were waiting for the good news we finally got. I used up all my holiday requests I ever had (63 x 9 = 567) to garner these results. ( I get 9 requests per year because I decided to make my honorary Jew designation retroactive to get 8 extra wishes per year, but that’s another story. Hey, don’t laugh, those wishes along with all the thoughts and prayers from friends and family worked.)
About 3 months ago Gayle began having symptoms that finally required a doctor’s visit. At first, she was treated for an infection and given antibiotics. (Here is humorous [not really] side note. These same symptoms can be caused by a STD or HIV. Lets just say Gayle would make a great interrogator at GITMO.) After a short session of waterboarding and when the test results came back negative, her doctor decided on another course of treatment. She performed a D&C. That also didn’t resolve the symptoms, but analysis of the tissue gathered revealed the problem. She had complex hyperplasia with atipia. This particular hyperplasia always turns into endometrial cancer 100% of the time if untreated and 25% to 45% of the time undetected cancer is already present. ( I will spend the rest of my life unlearning all those fun-filled facts about gynecological cancer. That brain space needs to be utilized for important information like the point spread for the Monday night football game or how to deduce when someone is holding a pocket pair in poker.)
Cancer. I can still hardly type those words without losing my breath. Gayle’s doctor in Victoria, Dr Gonzales, gave us the treatment options. The one she recommended strongly was treatment at the most prestigious cancer treatment center in the world, MD Anderson Cancer Center. Dr. Gonzales offered a referral to a colleague there. I will be forever grateful to her for that referral.
Off to Houston we went. MD Anderson is an intimidating place. There are so many very smart people working there the windows vibrate with brain power. Walking into the lobby is like entering the lobby of the United Nations building. We saw a Saudi sheik and a number of Sikhs. People were speaking all kinds of languages from all over the world. Very lucky for us, my sister and brother-in-law are old hands at guiding people through the maze of buildings that make up the campus designed by architects inspired by ant hills. She has been in treatment there for years for ovarian cancer and my brother-in-law just began treatment for kidney cancer that has spread to his lungs. They are pretty experienced tour guides and they are doing very well in their treatment regimen.
We then met with Gayle’s resident brainiac physician, Dr. Frumowitz (surely he is a member of the Tribe). He analyzed the data presented by Dr. Gonzales (still my hero in this saga), and performed an exam. Then he stated, “Guess what you’re doing for Christmas”.
That brings us today. Jackie and Ansel were by our sides throughout this ordeal and also today. Our very good friends Chuck and Danna were also there to support us. Norman was kind enough to lend them to us for this time despite the horrendous ordeal he is experiencing just down the street at Hermann Memorial Hospital (more on that later). Gayle’s surgery lasted three hours. Let me tell you, that is a very long time to wonder what is going on. But then Dr. Frumowitz came back with the very best news he could have offered. The surgery went off well and analysis of the tissue gleaned there is no cancer. Gayle is cancer free. We will probably be home tomorrow.
Throughout this 3 month peek into Hell, Gayle has been a trooper. She continued to perform admirably in all 3 of her full time jobs and very seldom let the pressure of living with the thoughts of cancer interfere with her life. She certainly showed her bravery. I never loved her more.