2009 greetings from Judy

Nota bene: Judy Greenlee died in November 2011. In January 2009, she sent this short note and a request to share a message at this web site:

JudyAlice, if you would be so kind, would you edit this and post a bit on the class website so that folks who saw me in October know that I haven't kicked the bucket, and that I'm starting to kick other things instead?  Thanks bunches!
From: Judy
Date: January 5, 2009

Hello Friends,  

As most of you know, I had some sort of brain "event" in about July of 2008 which left me dazed and confused to say the least.  Severe loss of memory; loss of balance; shaking hands, arms, legs; walking badly with a cane; falling down.  My husband and family and some close friends have kept me alive. 

Doctor after doctor continued to do testing without helpful results.  No ideas, solutions, or medications helped. In fact, of course, the medications messed things up even more. 

For those who saw me at our GRAND get together at Merrifield Park in October, you know how I looked, walked, and sounded. I was not at all good, and I was losing ground. And after October, I got worse.  I felt most sincerely that death was near, so I tried to prepare and tried to prepare those who love me. 

Remember the saying "Live fast, die young, and leave a beautiful corpse"?  I realized I was already too old to leave a beautiful corpse behind, so I decided to live.   I ditched the non-working meds and told my neurologist I wanted to be referred to the physical therapist who had previously worked so effectively on my frozen shoulder.  The man is a true healer -- part magician, part physical therapist, part social worker, part motivational life coach, and part really good friend.  

OK, so here's last week's time line: 

JanisFirst, on Dec 30, Janis C., my dearest friend of 53 years, came to spend four days with us in Altadena, continuing our tradition of meeting on New Year's Eve afternoon every year possible.  That gave both my husband and me such an extraordinary emotional boost.

Next, on Saturday, January 3, I left my cane at home,  and I drove my car (a sexy little red sports car named "Roja") for the first time since July.

On Sunday, January 4, I drove it more and did some shopping. I had not been in a store since August!

Tomorrow, I solo and begin driving myself around again!  My cane is in semi-permanent retirement, where all good canes go when their duty is done.   BUT TODAY .............. some of you know that I used to run; I began running while working on my doctorate at Notre Dame, 6 or 8 miles a day, sometimes more, usually 7 days a week for years. Then, too many surgeries and all sorts of physical problems after 10 surgeries and blah blah blah.  I never cared for "walking"......... TODAY  I JOGGED! Yep, that's what I did.  I jogged about 1/8 or so of a mile and walked back.

Thanks to all of you for your support, your phone calls, emails, cards, and thoughtfulness. I want to let you all know that ........ I'm back! 

May we all have a better 2009. I wish you Peace and Love. Do What is Important To You NOW!

Judith G.,
Alive and Smiling
(January 2009)

CLICK to see memorial for Judy.