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Archive for October, 2014

Yes! FreedomInk is getting ready for the annual All Hallows Eve Blog Hop again this year. Want to share in the fun? It all begins October 30, 2014 at midnight eastern time and continues through midnight October 31.

Write a blog post about either:

1.Your favorite horror book

2. Your favorite ghost or horror story

3. A personal or family ghost story or paranormal event.

Then go to our event page and leave us your blog address so we can add it to our list.

And on October 30, we will post the list of blog addresses on the Facebook Event page. Just go to each blog listed between midnight Oct. 30 and midnight Oct. 31, read each post and leave a comment to show you visited.

Where is this event, you ask?

https://www.facebook.com/events/302040066666646

Stay tuned for more details!

Ciao!

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Cancer and War.WayJust before my fifty-first birthday, I wore a new bra for the first time and that evening I had a very tender spot under my left breast. I put it down to the new bra. The next day it was still sore, but I didn’t think there was a problem. Later in the week, I wore the bra again, and the spot was even worse.

Feeling around the area, I found a spot about the size of the end of my thumb which felt like a blister under the skin.  My annual physical was scheduled for the next week, anyway, so I could talk to my doctor about it.

Once she’d examined the area, she said she wasn’t sure what to think. It felt “squishy”—a very technical medical term. The surgeon I saw the next week didn’t feel we needed to be too concerned, but he ordered a diagnostic mammogram. He would remove the lump, just to on the safe side.

Since they weren’t concerned, I wasn’t either. From everything I’d read, a malignant tumor was hard, not squishy. I called his office two days later. They’d received the results, but he hadn’t looked them over yet. After leaving a call-back number, I drove to the training studio to teach the junior martial arts class.

The junior class—ages five to twelve—was always a lively bunch, so I had my hands full. About halfway through class, our secretary told me I had a call.  Apologizing for giving me the news over the phone, he said the tests were back and it was malignant. He would schedule my pre-ops and surgery as soon as possible.

As I hung up the phone, I remembered it was my birthday. Great! Happy 51st Mel. You’ve got breast cancer. The rest of the evening was a blur. From this point to the start of chemo, everything seemed to be racing forward, towing me along.

How did my martial arts training come to my rescue?

My training gave me what I call a warrior mindset. I treated this disease as I would any other threat.  I attacked instead of backing away in fear and self-pity, as I would have before training. I met several women who gave into self-pity and didn’t make it. As one man I met told me, attitude is everything.

It was time to fight. I went into the OR with my mind on fighting cancer. I came out of anesthesia fighting everyone in reach. A male nurse, beads of perspiration on his forehead, said I was a lot stronger than I looked. The next time, I resolved to have peace and calm during surgery, and it worked much better.

As part of my training, I meditated every day and I feel this helped keep my mind calm and my focus on recovery. There is evidence that regular meditation aids the healing process, and I feel it helped me.

A sense of humor helped, too. My poor oncologist will never recover. Nearly every time he stepped into the exam room my daughter and I were rolling with laughter. I fear he took it personally. Our family is known for its wacky sense of humor, though. We can find something to laugh about in nearly any situation.

Exercise is great for overcoming the effects of chemotherapy and I was used to working out. But I had to redefine my terms. My goal became walking to the mailbox and back each day without help, a total of about fifty yards. I would improve for three weeks, go in for chemo, and start all over.

When my husband flew me to Spain between treatments, we walked in the park across the street nearly everyday.  Our favorite restaurant was Vivaldi’s. While he was at work, I had time to sleep and recover with nothing else to worry me. I’m glad I finally agreed to go.

I’ve just turned sixty-one, and my birthday always reminds me of my fight against cancer. I’ve been in remission for nine years, thanks to my husband and our daughter who helped pull me through.

My motto? Don’t let the bastard win.

For more about my fight with breast cancer, go to:

http://amzn.com/B00F3ZW2LW

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Black and whiteWith Jareth, First Lord re-released this month, it’s time to look forward to the sequel, Viviane, First Lady. We’re aiming for a March 2015 release date for Viviane.

Following the events in Jareth, First Lord, we find Viviane trying to come to grips with all the changes life has brought her way, from the loss of her husband before the story, to Jareth’s courtship and the trouble between the clans.

Now life is being further complicated by things completely out of her control. And until she can gain a little control, there can be no planning for heirs to the house of Brannach.

So if you haven’t read Jareth, First Lord, go ahead and pre-order your copy now, because Viviane is following hard on its heels.

Available now through FreedomInk365. Jareth will soon be available through Amazon, Books-a-Million and Barnes and Noble. Paperback and eBook.

http://www.facebook.com/jarethfirstlord

Jareth Cover art final

 

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CommercialOn my birthday, the year I turned 51, I received the news that I had breast cancer. I was on the martial arts floor teaching a Korean style of fighting to about fifteen kids under the age of 12. There was no time to have a breakdown, unless I wanted to unleash complete chaos in the training hall, so I drew in strength and went back out to the floor.

How did the arts help with my treatment and recovery? I chose to view cancer as the enemy and treat it like I would any other. Counter attack and win. Offer no quarter. This disease is a killer and must be treated as such.

Now was not the time for self-pity or for asking, “Why me?” In so many cases there is no answer to that question. People from all walks of life, lifestyles and backgrounds develop breast cancer, with seemingly very little in common. If you are diagnosed with breast cancer, chances are you will never know the why.

One of the most frightening things for me was not knowing what to expect, which is one of the reasons I wrote my personal journey.  It isn’t a technical discussion. This isn’t the treatment for every form of cancer. But it will let you know that there is someone out here who understands what you’re facing, and who won her battle.

So if you are facing your opponent, or if you know someone who is, please get a copy of Cancer and the Warrior’s Way, either Kindle or paperback. It isn’t too long, but it is my wish to give you hope.

Cancer and the Warrior’s Way

http://amzn.com/B00F3ZW2LW

And if you’re looking for something lighter to read while you’re recovering between chemo, check out my fantasy romance selections at:

http://www.amazon.com/Mellie-Miller/e/B00954K2C8

Wishing you the very best life has to offer,

Mellie Miller

 

My fiction:

Gambler’s Folly–Mainstream Sensual Fantasy Romance

A Summer Romance–short story, sweet romance

Be Careful of the Water–short sci-fi story

Jareth, First Lord–fantasy romance, coming out this month. Available for pre-order from FreedomInk365.

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