The Day Came

The day finally arrived…Molly is home. It was the phone call I did not want to get …but at the same time I did so I would never have to go to that vet’s office again. It seemed surreal walking in and asking for Molly’s remains. Her little urn is a simply pretty ivory…her paw mold was decorated with a butterfly and a heart. She has flown away but she is forever ever in our hearts…and for a touch of the princess that she was….her paw was covered in glitter. It seemed fitting for a doll that had my heart. We also received some wonderful cards from caring friends…THANK YOU!

Tears …yes there were many tears today! But now I’m back to my desk…typing away and hoping that I can get more statistics homework done. My goal is to get through another chapter before I rest…or maybe I will rest and then get to the other chapter tomorrow. Oh the battle! It is hard to believe though that in a year…this homework/classwork will be DONE! By then 11 years of education will be behind me! 11 years! I have been in school since 2003…and it is sad…but exciting that soon (light at the end of the tunnel) I will be done!

But then you know comes the planning (PRAYING) that I get a job! The economy isn’t that great…and yes that is a major worry!  But you know, if I work hard…at least I know I will be competitive so despite my pain…I must remain focused. 🙂


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First Class Day

You know you would think after nearly 10 straight years of post-secondary education (first semester of college was Fall 2003) that I would be getting tired of the first day of the semester.  At least I thought I would be tired…goodness knows, I’m setting myself up for more sleepless nights..more papers and homework…and yes the lovely stress. But still, part of me gets rejuvenated seeing my syllabus, knowing what needs done this semester, and mentally I prepare myself to get it done so I can have one more semester behind me.

This summer semester (my second to last summer semester EVER…unless I pursue another EdD or PhD) I am taking multivariate statistics and my educational leadership internship. I will be doing an advanced statistics projects (WOOHOO) and learning several advanced statistical analysis. I have to work on learning how to interpret as well as run the sets in SPSS. Then for my internship project, I am going to be working one-on-one with a professor to learn the in and outs about the life of being a professor. I think it will be very eye-opening as well help me be more prepared for the getting a tenure position after graduation.

I made it through today focused on my homeowork and classes….it was not the easiest day but I am happy I was able to focus on things. I find myself glancing at the phone…the vet should be calling tomorrow or Monday letting us know that Molly’s remains are ready for me to pick up. I found a spot for her in my office…at least until I know place to spread her ashes. I really hope they took molds of all her paws if they could…but I will be happy with what I can get. It still hurts so bad to come home to a quiet house….I miss her bubbly jumping around me when I get home and I really miss our cuddle time at night.

Time…time heals! Grief is something you feel for any loss and yet the only way to heal…is time. To hurt, to cry and to mourn and then to pick up and move forward. That is what I keep telling myself. And I’m telling myself that especially because of my Rheumatoid Arthritis, Lupus and Fibromyalgia I have to be even more careful to rest (as much as possible) and make some me time. I will be tempted to work, work, work but I need to make sure to take my nap, rest and get sleep. Will I heal??? Yes, the grief and the pain will not keep me down…I will still finish. But in order to do that I have to remember…ME is important.

But I know I am not alone, there are many out there who have messaged me they are handling/dealing with their own grief. The loss of their spouse, fiancee, daughter, sister, nephew, mother, grandparents, and like me a loved furry child. I pray that you all find a little more peace tonight as we go through this grief journey together. For those of you like me…also battling an invisible illness..I pray that you grief, you balance your life…and that physical and emotional pain is a little less tomorrow.

Hugs! #spoons #spoonie #squeakers


Keeping Up

It is amazing how life events throw your whole life out of whack. I was able to go to work today and for the most part I was able to focus on work. I pulled myself together and was able to function at almost my perfect best. It is hard to do that but I like to keep some things close to me…there are only a few (and A VERY few) people at work that I actually share my most personal details. I got hugs from them and it helped to know they were there for me too.

I came home and took a much needed nap (the balance I was talking about a few days ago). I have been reading a really good book about becoming an academic writer. In the book one exercise is to set a time to write every night, to make sure I have some office work time, and to use this time to write and get things done. So I started doing that and I know in order to get into my office and work…I have to be rested. So I came home and curled up for a nap.

Grief drains your body…physically and emotionally. Today I was wracked with nausea and GI problems…I think the stress/meds/etc. combined contributed to that mess. Some have asked..what is grief like for a pet? This is simply my opinion but I think grief for a close pet is like grief for a loved one…you cycle through the stages of grief…you ache for them, cry for them, and try to build a life knowing they are gone forever.

It reminds me of when I lost my father..I watched him slowly die over a six week period. Although, in that case I had time to say goodbye..time to make sure I was as ready as I could be for him to die. He had bone/brain cancer…it was painful to watch and oh so painful to lose him…but I knew it was coming. I started the grieving process for my dad when I knew his diagnosis was terminal. The grief now I think is a little different…I am aware now (unlike before) of what it feels like to have the suddeness of death. Before I had experienced prepared death….now I know the feeling of sudden death. All the thoughts – I didn’t say goodbye, did I hug her bye, did she know I loved her, did I say I loved her, and many more thoughts.  I was not prepared….I did not get to have my time to prepare. But do you get different grief…I dont’ know. It feels the same to me.

Despite the grief I know life has to move on. My classes unlock tomorrow…my research projects have to be done…reading needs to be done. So I’m trying my hardest to get up and focus. I will finish this journey but I will always carry Molly in my heart.


Yes….it is real

Time feels as if it has slowed down to just a crawl. It feels like yesterday that we were woken to a phone call…that changed our world. We have since come home…I am at this very minute sitting in my office. I’m contemplating the last few days..the house feels sooo lonely. The girls, Precious and Pepper, can sense something is off. Precious cried all around the house…Pepper cried as she curled up on all the pets favorite spot on the couch.

When I walked inside the house yesterday, it broke my heart to collect Molly’s toys…and to pick up her bed. The blankets still smelled like her…I smiled as I thought of her running all over the house. Jumping on our bed…following me around the house. I walked through the house and caught myself glancing behind me…like I used see if she was behind me…she wasn’t.

I slept last night curled up next to two large stuffed animals. It helped the pain a little bit but they weren’t as warm as she was….nor did they jump up and down the bed…licking my ears because they wanted to get up. The ache hurts my heart…it makes me wish I could just rewind time (don’t we all right). I wished all Sunday to get a phone call explaining the mistake….but that phone call did not come.

This morning, hubby and I went to the vet.  We picked out a pretty white (ivory) urn for Molly. She will be individually cremated (gosh didn’t know there were so many decisions to make) and then returned to us within a week. I think I will keep her in my office…at least until we find a perfect spot to let her ashes go. We also asked for molds to be made of her paws. They are going to have those returned to us next week.

Most of last night I battled with…do I want to see her. Part of my mind keeps replaying just seeing her bound across the high way…and that car hitting her so hard. I don’t think she suffered, the vet believes she died instantly..I hope she didn’t even know what hit her. But part of me still wanted to see her one more time…to hold her one more time…to kiss her and tell her I loved her one more time. But then part of me didn’t want to remember her that way….I wanted to remember her as she was to me…bouncy, loving, running around the house..and being the perfect little angel. In the end, today I couldn’t bring myself to see her as she was left. I will keep the image of her happy self in my mind and when her ashes are returned, at least that will close our relationship with the vet’s office…and we can start to heal.

I have lost pets in my life  growing up as a kid. But you know now…knowing with my Rheumatoid Arthritis, Lupus, and Fibromylgia…we have decided kids are not in our future. The risks/the meds…we have now made our furry kids our kids. We have made Precious, Pepper and Molly our little kids that are always at home when we get home. And it tears my heart that I lost one of my babies.

Some have said…well she is just a dog…but she was more than just a dog to me, to us. She was a bundle of joy…and it ripped my heart out to hear that she was gone.

As can be expected my Fibromyalgia and Rheumatoid Arthritis have flared. But I added some vitamin C and Zinc to my diet. I hope that helps me. And today I took off work to go to the vet’s office, rest, and try to prepare myself emotionally for this week. Classes are beginning…as of Thursday. I have so much to do. Do we have time to grieve…no we never have time to grieve. Do we have to grieve? Yes we have to hurt, we have to ache, we have to cry, and we have to scream….we have to in order to heal.

Healing doesn’t happen overnight…healing takes days…months…years…a lifetime. My Dad died 5 years and 1 month to the day that Molly died. Even though it was 5 years and 1 month ago…I felt my loss of my Dad so much while I felt the loss of Molly. You never truly forget…or heal…but I believe that you can get to a point where you can smile again.

Will my life stop? No it won’t…I will get to class on Monday..I will focus..I will right…I will finish this dream and one day…Lord willing be Dr. Tucker. But I will still hurt and I will still carry the memories of my Dad and my perfect little angel. Both are gone too soon…but I will take what I learned and felt with them to become a better doctor, a better professor, a better researcher, and a better advocator.

To the many who have emailed, texted, messaged, and replied your condolences for my loss. Thank you! It helped me so much on Sunday to know we were not alone in our grief. Your words helped us,your prayers are carrying us.

Thank you for listening, thank you for understanding!

Molly, you gave us joy…you gave us life…you kept us going around the house. You were so perfect for me and Matt. We grew together with you as a our middle child.  You were just learning to go to the bathroom outside when you were told (FINALLY)…I think God is appreciating that. I loved your tricks, I loved your dresses, I loved how you came running as soon as I was in the door (wow Wed. nights are going to won’t be waiting for me), and you were always following me around the house. I came to expect you in bed with me, to watch me in the bathroom, to sitting next to me in the office, and your pouncing on me when I sat on the couch. I miss you angel. I love you so much!


PSS Precious and Pepper say they love you and miss you!


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A Great Loss

This morning was shattered, parts of me wishes I could just rewind the past we days. I woke up to a telephone call from a number i didn’t recognize. Groggily I handed the phone to my husband. As I listened to the person talking, tears started pouring out.

My beautiful Molly was boarded this weekend while we went on a small vacation. We boarded her at our vets office, the technician let her out to play. She was not on leash…and she got out through a hole in their fence. She ran into the six lane highway (where most are going upwards of 60mph) and was struck by a car. A car going at upwards of 60 mph….on a 9 pound dog, Molly was killed instantly.

The grief and pain I feel at the moment is overwhelming. The shock of the phone call still rings in my ears. My body is flaring…every joint aches and my Fibro is screaming in my body. I am so angry that a professionals negligence killed my dog. I, a non animal trained person, knew that she could get out of the tiniest hole, I would not let her off lease in my yard until I felt it was safe. A persons carelessness, a professionals negligence….cost my family our baby.

Our hurt is so great…it is hard to imagine Molly wont be curled up on my legs anymore. She won’t be following me around the house. So many could haves or should have or why didn’t I….

Molly we love you and are so sorry we couldn’t keep you safe






Do you ever feel like you have to plan your life because of your RA or Fibro??? I so do!!! I know that some days I won’t have energy…some days I might only have a little energy. Because of that I have recognized the importance to planning. For me that means working through breaks so I’m ahead. And learning to have a RA/Fibro academic LIFESTYLE!!!

My dream is to finish my doctorate and go straight into an academic professor position. To get that job….I have to work now to make major strides. But I have to keep always in my focus the I will be doing this with some other things to account for—my invisible needs! Does this mean I cannot do it??? Not at al! This means I will have to plan, work hard, and rest! Balance!

I really focused on that today because I went to bed about 1a.m….and made it out of bed close to 12p.m.. I slept and I rested. I have a lot on my to do list but my biggest to do is to take care of myself. The Imuran is wearing me out…major fatigue and tummy issues…but I’m pushing on!


I just want to encourage you tonight, if you are like me ..maybe you are up flaring…and hurting! I know the pain seems never ending. In fact, the pain sometimes feels just awful! But I want to encourage you to focus on something positive. Focus on something good!

Tonight through our pain…I hope some good comes out of it! It might be difficult but let’s try!!!

An US Day :)

Matt and I decided we would take an US day and drive up to the George Bush Presidential Library. I had always wanted to go and decided that despite the drive we would make a day of it. I really enjoyed myself even though it was exhausting. I figured I could sit at home feeling gross and in pain or I could sit in the car and then walk around for a little bit. I was glad I went even though (AS USUAL) I am paying for it today 😦

Imuran and I are not friends yet. Def. exhausted beyond exhausted and just feeling rotten. I’m still on a loading dose, the full dose will start within another week. Right before I go into my statistics two class YAY!! NOT!!!

Here are some pictures of our day 🙂


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I went for my 3 month appt with my rheumatologist. I was happy to see her especially because I have struggled with the Arava side effects. After a short discussion, she told she recommended seeing an additional specialist and she wanted me to stop taking Arava and move to Imuran.

I can say that appointment was not everything I wanted it to be. I walked away on two new things (Biotin 5000mg and Biotene mouthwash) and Imuran. I’ve taken two of my loading doses……def not good. I feel like I have mono hung over. I’m hoping this eases but one major positive is that I’m not I’m classes this week! Yes!

I laughed when the pharmacist was like….live in a bubble!!!! Hahahahahha I am like how??? But we are praying this new med helps! I’m seeing more doctors on Friday! Yay!! But a good thing, I’m highlighting my hair to help perk me up!

And since I’m bouncing everywhere tonight…Maybe it is just me but sometimes this journey feels sooo lonely! I texted someone after my doctors appointment and the response was “k.” Simple…nothing else…I guess I expected more from this person. It just further makes me sense that sometimes this painful life is lonely. So many people don’t get our journey. But yet we can still find those few and far between gems.

I found someone who I have actually never met. But she encourages me so much, we are on the same journey. I know this week she and I (within a day) started new meds. To be able to text someone and they get it….amazing!!

If you know someone who is on this RA/Lupus/ Fibromyalgia (or another invisible illness) be understanding, be supportive, be encouraging and above all listen. We desperately need people who understand and encourage us.

If you have an invisible illness (RA/Lupus/Fibromyalgia) be encouraged to share and connect. I always love meeting new people. Thank you for all who encourage me! You are truly awesome!