There once was a woman named Carrie Ann Hill who was the concierge of these three men (Bottom front: Travis Buck). For the last 14 years Carrie managed to achieve her goals as well of keep track of their lives. Carrie always seemed to attend to all three of her best friends’ busy everyday lives, while staying connected with her own. I will never forget how this wonderful woman in one week changed our lives forever.
Bad Things Happen in Three’s….
(Dishwasher leaks, tire flat, hot water heater goes out…..I WISH!!!)
1. (Dishwasher Leaks) On the morning of June 19th 2012, I received a phone call from my mother stating that she had shortness of breath and pressure in her chest. Immediately my thought was to call an ambulance; but as most, she insisted that I just take her early to her doctor’s office to see if they could get her in sooner as she had made herself an appointment for later that afternoon. I left work immediately and drove to her house. On the way, I contacted the appointment center at her clinic in hopes to schedule a sooner appointment. The on-call doctor asked me to bring her to the nurse treatment room so they could assess her and decide if a sooner appt. was necessary. When arriving at Mom’s house I found her sweating and holding her chest. Again, she is persistent that she does not need an ambulance. We get into the car and head to the clinic. When we arrive we walked into the nurse waiting area and are told where to check in. I state my name and explained that I was the one that called earlier and….I could not even finish my sentence before mom is placed on a stretcher and wheeled into a room. In the middle of two docs and a handful of nurses, I hear the phrase “you will go by ambulance.” For a short second, I was angry at her for refusing the ambulance earlier and at myself for not just making it happen. Then the scared feeling set in. A nurse met me in the hallway and told me that mom was going to be transported to the local hospital by ambulance. I panicked to say the least and called Travis (My only relative who would answer his phone and was only 30 mins away). My father was away for work on the coast which was about a 3 hour drive from where we were and of course I did not want to scare him before I knew what was happening. When Travis met me at the hospital, mom was currently having testing done. We decided to wait the time out in the cafeteria. Travis, just having surgery the week before to have a lump removed from his jaw, was eager to finally get some real food that he could chew. Well, that fantascy ended quickly as the closed sign was placed right in front of Travis’ face. If only we would have arrived five minutes earlier. Well, chocolate cookies and juice had to do. We checked back in with mom only to be told that she was being transported to another hospital by ambulance (Not sure why they didn’t take us here in the first place-they knew the insurance carrier). Mom, of course, begged to ride with us kids, but was told she had to be transported by the medical team. At this point Dad was called. Mom ended up staying the night so they could monitor her heart. Long story short, Travis and I got to come back the next day and hoped the cafeteria would be open. On Wednesday, June 20th 2012; day 2 of hospital stay, I recieved what would be my final text message from Carrie Hill. It read….”Travis told me about your mom. He is gonna keep me informed and I will be there right after work. I am praying for her, you and I love you! She will be ok….keep your chin up. Many hugs!!!” That night I hugged Carrie for the last time.
Mom was released on Wednesday afternoon and told to take care of herself. Her heart was healthy,they were unsure as to what caused her so much pain, but she had to find a healthier way to handle stress. Her mother (Our Grandmother) had a heart attack at 40 and our Great-Grandmother died of a heart attack at an early age. We could be back sooner or later.
2. (Flat Tire) The next day, Thursday, June 21st 2012 was the appointment for Travis to hear his results from his recent biopsy (lump removed from his jaw). Travis had texted me around 2:00 in the afternoon telling me to call him when I got off work to hear about his appt. I figured it was not an emergency since he was only texting. I called him as soon as I got off work. Travis, with a slight giggle in his voice, almost like he was not believing himself, said, “they found cancer.” Travis explained to me that the surgeon was not sure she had gotten it all out as the tumor was attached to the muscle under the parotid gland. She was not sure that she removed all the cancer because there was not clear margins on the pathology report. What does this mean? Is there still cancer there? Travis explained to me that they had been given some studies of 16 people (Hints the name of my Blog) that have been diagnosed and are involved in a study with this same typeof cancer. He also explained to me that they are not sure of the survival rate at this time as there is not much info out there. The cancer has only been heard of since 2010. Right away I feared for him and wondered how Carrie was taking the news. Carrie was by Travis’ side after surgery and continued to hold him during recovery. Travis explained to me that Carrie was pampering him like crazy. He laughed cause she went out and bought him a greasy meal that the others could not eat because of their strict diets. Travis was very thankful to have Carrie by his side, someone who can help make decisions as the time passes and the journey began.
3.(Hot Water Heater Goes Out) On Friday, June 22nd 2012 I get a text from Travis mid-day stating… “Just seeing how your coping with this crazy week lol.” Funny, I replied…”I’m ok. And how are you lol.” Really, the both of us had no idea that the worst was hours away.
I was really busy at work this day as I was hosting our preschool graduation ceremony. Not to mention, my feet were killing me in my heels. Note to self-wear your heels only during performance-not set-up! Graduation had started and success was happening. The kids looked so cute in their caps and gowns. The parent smilies were contagious. Towards the end of the performance I asked my boss if it was hot in there. I just remember me wishing I did not wear black. He told me that it must just be me cause he was fine. Maybe I was hot because of the nerves. Then I looked out the door and asked one of my employees what time it was. She stated, “It’s 5:35pm.” I replied back to her, “Oh, good. It will all be over soon”-Remember this line as it haunts me till this day.
After the graduation ceremony was over, my hubby, I, and the kiddos met up with some close friends at a restaurant for some food and drinks to celebrate my week had ended. With both my mom in the hospital Tuesday and Wednesday and then Travis finding out about his rare cancer…I needed a drink! Friends could not believe the week we had. It was a late night. The kids had to be carried to the car as they were slumped over our shoulders fast asleep. It sure was nice not having our cell phones on at dinner-a way to escape life. My hubby checked his phone as soon as we got in the car and he had six missed calls. Most from my mom, but one very important text from my uncle Drew stating to call my mom cause it was an emergancy. Now Drew is the joking type, but not when it comes to emergencies. The hubby called mom immediately and was told the news….”Carrie was killed in a car accident!” WHAT!?!?! My heart sank and my mouth dropped open. I could not even hold it in as my children were asleep. The hubby called his sister and told her we were dropping the kids off over night (keep in mind-it was already 10:00pm). We rushed to Travis’ house. Immediately upon entering I grabbed Travis and wrapped my arms around him so tight. I was not going to let him go. How could this happen? How could all this happen in the same week? What will happen in the future? Travis is now left with Cancer and no Carrie.