Traveling with breast cancer

Photo credit: Christine Tibbetts / Blended Family TravelingMom

Vienna and Salzburg. Budapest. The Danube River. Healing places to think about visiting when traveling with breast cancer. My blended family borrowed the model of Make A Wish Foundation 10 years ago, believing dreams of a glorious trip could jump start healing cells and natural body chemicals. A river cruise in Europe became our focus – small ship, only a few stairs, personal and comfortable.

Dreaming was good with my husband’s sister Judy as she contemplated what metastasis three years after banishing breast cancer might truly mean.

Fitting the pieces to plan the trip, not just the notion, was even better because it gave the family something to talk about other than incessant doctor visits and treatments.

Traveling together, especially a bold trip, also showed that we believed. Judy claimed a future and we claimed her visions.

Traveling with breast cancer

Those in the family who knew Judy as a little girl, say her granddaughter Joella looks exactly the same. Photo credit: Christine Tibbetts/Blended Family Travelingmom

I’m the sister-in-law, second wife of her brother so we first met well into being adults, and Judy was fine friends with the first wife. OK with me.

Pregnant at the same time, Judy and I, 18 years before the cancer. A bit quirky unless you’ve been around families like mine with many layers. Her brother—my husband—already had four grown children.

Our babies were born 11 days apart. They’re good friends today, with babies of their own.

100 1871

Jude was named with his late grandmother Judy in mind. Photo credit: Christine Tibbetts/Blended Family TravelingMom

The WWII generation likes to travel together to share military experiences. Maybe Blended Families should travel together to shared-memory special places.

Judy, her brother my husband, Judy’s dear friend Cheryl and I reveled in the Danube River Cruise. Some challenges, certainly—oh those dreadful no-blood-clot stockings on the long flight.

Truly shared pleasure.

And truly a benefit for all our blended family and her friends — proceeding based on believing in the future.

Top photo: Staying on the positive side after cancer returned, Judy walked a long way one afternoon in Graz, Austria to find a phone to call her daughter—now the mother of two and aunt of two more.