September is a special month for me. Both my husband and I celebrate our birthdays. It’s the start of all the gorges fall colors, here in Illinois. Sweatshirts will soon come out of their summer boxes. I love sweatshirts….strange as it may sound. They are comforting. School starts back, which when my son was little was a blessing. Goodness, there are so many reasons.
But there is one reason in particular. Spider’s! Yes, I said spider’s. To me spider’s are good luck. Now wait, I know there are many who have, what do they call that, arachnophobia…..not me, spider’s have a special place in my heart.
In the summer of 2003 a spider suddenly appeared outside our bedroom window. I have a flower box in the window and it was colorfully planted that year in red and white impatiens flowers. One summer morning I opened the shade and there was a spider sitting in the center of a beautiful web. She had carefully spun her web from each side of the window, and down into the flower box. It was HUGH, and so was she! I was very glad she was OUTSIDE!
All summer MacGyver (hubby) and I watched her. When I watered the flower box’s I tried very hard not to disturbed the web but often it got tore, and the next morning there she was, web beautiful constructed back again. She became part of the family that summer, and we enjoyed watching her…… through the window!
In late August of that summer, MacGyver was bitten by something while doing some clean-up at a historical site in southern Illinois. He did not see “the spider” but after a trip to our physician it was diagnosed as a spider bite. While there the Doctor suggested that MacGyver have a colonoscopy, since he would be turning 50 in a few weeks. We knew, for him, a colonoscopy was very important. His father had recently passed away after being diagnosed with colon cancer in July of 2000.
The test was scheduled with Doctor U, who cared for my father-in-law during his battle with cancer. He was very insistent that each of the boys, MacGyver is the oldest of three boys, have a colonoscopy done at age 50. The test was done on Tuesday, September 9, 2003, just three days before MacGyver’s 50th birthday.
At 10:00 a.m. that September morning our lives were forever changed by one sentence. We have found cancer. As MacGyver and I drove home that morning I cannot even explain all the emotions that we were experiencing, I am tearful as I write these words, just remembering the events.
But, as the days and weeks went by, that September we were strangely comforted by that spider who had made her web outside our bedroom window. Every morning I would open the blinds and there she was in the center of this magnificently crafted web. I confess that several times I removed the web, but each morning it would be careful crafted back, as if nothing had ever disturbed it. We decided that perhaps that spider was in fact a sign.
If MacGyver had not been bitten by a spider we may never have found the cancer as soon as we did. Even with a stern warning by Doctor U about having the colonoscopy I doubt we would have scheduled a colonoscopy that early. I learned that no matter what happens things can be rebuilt, and often much to our surprise…… better then before.
This September will mark MacGyver’s six year cancer free! Having made it through chemotherapy, radiation and two surgeries….WE will always be so very thankful for that spider……. bite! It saved his life.This year we have a new spider. She is in my flower boxes in the front room window. I’m glad she is there.
Just a simple reminder that everyday is truly a gift!