Well Hello There!

Taps Microphone…. Is anyone still there? Well, this is akward!

I just want to say that I am sorry for the long leave of absence! I had the chapter written and got halfway through the pictures, and then my lap top had some errors and long story short, didnt get to finish. I am adding some new characters to my story and didnt want to play on that computer any more. I have just purchased a wicked awesome computer, and am currently in the process of moving my saved file from the lap top to the desk top. Once that is up and done, I will update you all (if you are still there to update) about when the next chapter is up!

Hope everyone is well, and had a happy new year!!!!

Chapter 7 – Vows

After my initial melt down in hearing what was going on with Gam, only two thoughts kept running through my mind. She only has months left to live, and she won’t be here for the wedding. We were planning on going back to Twinbrook after I graduated so that our friends from High School, and of course Gam could make it. That was no longer an option we had. I refused to do it without her. Michael didn’t have any family, other than the felons as parents, which were definitely not on our invite list. He told me one night that we didn’t have to have a big wedding. We could do it in the living room for all he cared.

“Madison, what matters is that we get to be together. Forever. It doesn’t matter to me how we proclaim that. If you want your Gam to witness it, that is fine with me. Let’s do it this week, tomorrow, right now even! I am ready and I just want you to know that.” Have I ever mentioned how much I love him?

I immediately began the little preparation it would take to throw this together. Gam was still moseying about just fine and this would be perfect, because I knew this would cheer her up! I had the marriage license and bought the dress a while ago, not one to leave things to the last minute and had little bits and pieces that I was planning on using in our wedding months ago.  After I knew that everything was taken care of, I asked Gam if we could talk so I could tell her the news! “Gam, I have something to tell you. Michael and I talked, and we decided to have the wedding now!”

After letting that sink in, Gam started tearing up. In a choked voice she hugged me and said that she loved me. Now all that was left was the getting married part! Michael and I decided to sleep in different beds tonight, to be somewhat traditional. He wouldn’t see me tomorrow until I was walking down the imaginary aisle, and I knew I would be anxious until that moment. I tried really hard to sleep, but with something as big and life altering as this I knew I would not prevail. When I woke up the next morning to get ready my hands were shaking and I didn’t think I would be able to put on my lipstick much less my eyeliner. Gam knocked on the door and came in to help. She saw my state and sat down on the edge of the chair and gave me one of her famous pep talks.

“Madison Miller, there is nothing to scared of. This is Michael were talking about. God broke the mold when he made that one, and you two are going to spend the rest of your lives making each other happy. It is what your parents had, what me and your pops had, and what you and he have. Easy as breathing. I know that this is a big step, but it’s the right one, and once you step outside the door, and say the vows, I promise it’ll be worth it. I love you so much kid. I am so proud of who you are and what you’re doing with your life, and I can’t wait to be with your parents again and watch what amazing things you will do in this life. Now come here and let me help with your mascara, its running all over the place!” “Gam! It’s running because you made me cry!” After that talk I felt no nerves. She was right.

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This was it, the big day, and the two people I cared about most were outside waiting on me. I took just a moment to tell my parents that I loved them and headed out the door. Gam stood up and started to cry when I was walking down the aisle, but my eyes had already fixed themselves on Michael. He was breathtaking. He always reminded of Bruce Wayne in a tuxedo and I loved it. I practically ran to him and had to keep my arms at my side to prevent from grabbing him in a loving embrace. I didn’t though, and after a few mushy heartfelt words, we were finally man and wife.

***************************

After the wedding, Gam hugged us both and went to lay down. She claimed that she was tired but I knew that she wanted me and Michael to have some time to ourselves. We signed the marriage license and it was official. And then we got started on something that we have waited a long time to do. I thought it would be awkward, but with him it just felt natural. We were each other’s firsts and I hoped that just like everything else in our relationship that this would be perfect too. Now don’t get me wrong, we did share a bed every night and we certainly weren’t angels, but I knew that we would be crossing the finish line soon and it made my heart speed up just a bit. I had purchased some pretty underthings for just this occasion and since this would be my last first time, I wanted it to be special.

As I dropped the robe, his mouth dropped open and he seemed to be nervous too. That made me feel a little bit better. He had always seemed to have the upper hand in our relationship, always so calm and collected while I always had my foot in my mouth! Now it was his turn to feel that way! I think I might just enjoy this.

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Life moved forward in the way it always does. Once the wedding, and more importantly the wedding night, yowza, everything went back to normal. Gam sold her house and started to get things in order. She moved in with us and brought her cat with her. We gave her the master bedroom since it had its own bathroom and Michael and I took the upstairs bedroom to have some privacy. I was still working and taking my classes online, and Michael had finally gotten the call from the academy to start training to be an officer. It always made me a little nervous to think about him out there chasing the bad guys, but it was his passion and I would never stand in the way of that. I was unbelievably happy whenever I thought about how perfect my life was shaping out to be. The only dark cloud was watching Gam get a little sicker as each day passed us by. I found myself gravitating towards her more and more, and wanting to hear stories about when she grew up. I wanted to learn as much as I could from her before it was to late.

She was happy though. She loved walking down to the clinic and watching me work. Leslie adored her just like anyone else who had ever met her. She would play with the animals and just watch me do what it is I loved. She helped Michael cook dinner in the evenings and we would have dinner together and just laugh. Each day I mentally prepared myself for the goodbye that was surely around the corner, but had come to accept it. If Gam could be stoic about this then so would I. She had lived a long life, and she was truly happy with it. I knew she didn’t want to go, hell no one ever did, but she was ok with it. I just kept thinking that she had waited a long time to see her husband again, and she would be with my parents again. And in the end that is all you can ever really ask for. To be with the ones you love, forever.

Two amazing, love filled, wonderful weeks later…

Rest in Peace Adele Miller. Born November 5, 1929 – Went Home June 14th, 2012. She is survived by Granddaughter Madison Miller-Rancik and Grandson in law Michael Rancik.

Life is but a stopping place,
A pause in what’s to be,
A resting place along the road,
to sweet eternity.
We all have different journeys,
Different paths along the way,
We all were meant to learn some things,
but never meant to stay…
Our destination is a place,
Far greater than we know.
For some the journey’s quicker,
For some the journey’s slow.
And when the journey finally ends,
We’ll claim a great reward,
And find an everlasting peace,
Together with the lord

-Author Unknown

Chapter 6 – Broken

Life in Appaloosa was easy. It had a small town feel to it that I was comfortable with. After we had settled in to our new home, and finally removed the last box, we started our journey looking into our careers. I had received a scholarship to Veterinary School due to the fact that I was Valedictorian. It was an online program, and I had to have so many hours of working credit to graduate. I made my way into town to meet with the only Veterinarian here, to see if she would let me shadow as an intern. I would only be allowed to do basic work but the experience was what I was after. Her name was Leslie Moore, and she was not much older than I was; maybe in her early thirties. She had a kind face, and what seemed like a very laid back personality. I explained to her that I needed an internship and that I one day hoped to run my own clinic.
She looked me up and down as if the answer was written on me somewhere and said, “So let me get this straight. You want to work here full time, do all the menial work I hate doing, and do it for free? I would be dumber than a sack of rocks if I said no to that sweet deal! Welcome to Appaloosa Animal Clinic Madison!” She laughed, and started showing me around.
 
I thought the clinic while small, was very homey and well kept. You could tell that Leslie took pride in her job, and that she loved animals as much as I did.
There were three exam rooms stocked with the finest supplies, one large area to perform surgery in, and also host the animals in case they needed to be kept here overnight, and in the very back there was an office. She led me back to the office and had me sign some new hire paperwork. If I did well during my internship, I had a paid spot waiting for me after graduation. I couldn’t be more thrilled.
Michael on the other hand didn’t have such good luck. With this town being as small as it was, there weren’t any open spots on the force. He did however get offered a part time job doing dispatch which would get him a foot in the door. It didn’t pay much, but in the mean time he was working out at the gym getting ready for the day they would take him in the academy.
I loved our new routine. He would wake up and run in the morning, while I would clean the house and cook breakfast for us. I had to be at the clinic at nine in the morning to help open and walk the dogs that were there. After that I would meet Michael for lunch down the street, and then we would finish our day at work. When I would get home he would have dinner going, and then I would shower and get online and do my school work.
It was nice feeling so grown up, and living with him was as easy as breathing. I talked to Gam often, relishing every moment we got to spend on the phone. She missed me of course but still loved her life back home. I regretted not being able to be there with her, but she informed me that she adopted a cat, and loved having a quiet companion. I was glad that she had someone there to keep her company even if he was only a cat. With me being gone she had no other family and most of her friends had passed away due to old age. This reminded me that Gam was not the young spring chicken she once was. Especially tonight, I could hear in her voice how tired she was. Something I wasn’t used to. She normally had more energy than I did! I asked her if she was feeling well, and she assured me that she was fine. She was going to the doctor tomorrow to make sure, but she was sure it was just her old bones. I felt nervous not being able to be there to take her myself and hear the doctor say she was fine, but she told me that she would call me as soon as she was done. After telling her I loved her we hung up.
I went to bed that night with worry in the pit of my stomach. The next morning proceeded in the same manor I had grown accustomed to. After telling Michael I loved him and heading off to work I couldn’t help but think that Gam would be on her way to the hospital right now. I really hoped that I was paranoid and nothing would be wrong, but after losing my parents I couldn’t bare the thought of losing her too. Work was rough today, and not because of the lack of sleep I had gotten. We had a cat that was being shaved today and she was not having it. I had to suit up in a rubber gloves and try to hold this poor kitty down while Leslie tried to sedate her. In the end, we won, but not without some new battle scars. Leslie assured me that Jane the cat only came in once a year to get shaved and this was not an everyday occurrence. I breathed a sigh of relief, glad that everyday vet life wouldn’t be so dramatic.
While eating lunch with Michael and retelling the cat tale, and finally laughing for once today, my cell phone rang. I picked up and heard Gam on the other end of the line. “Hi Madds my dear, did I catch you at a bad time?” She seemed stressed and not her usual happy go lucky self. I tried to stay calm and answered, “No Gam, I am on lunch with Michael. We just sat down actually. What did the doctor say?” I held my breath as I waited for her reply. She explained that the doctor noticed a lump on her hip and he took a sample to be sent off to the lab. He also ran some blood tests. There were many possibilities as to what it could be, but he was sending her samples to an oncologist because he felt that with her symptoms it might be Chondrosarcoma, a type of bone cancer that affects adults over the age of 40. It is more common in males but does affect some woman. My heart dropped. Cancer? Gam? I asked her in the strongest voice I could muster, “What would be the treatment if it was cancer?” She replied, “Most likely it would have to be radiation. Surgery is an option if it hasn’t spread, but they are unsure what it even is at the moment. For all we know it could be benign.” I asked Gam if she wanted to come stay with us out here while we waited for an answer or if she wanted Michael and I to come there but she said not to worry. She would be fine, and she didn’t want to disrupt our lives when it could be nothing. I told her to get some rest, and have the doctor call me when the test came back. We hung up, our hearts heavy. I couldn’t even finish my lunch. She seemed so healthy when we left a couple months ago, I couldn’t imagine anything that would bring her down this fast that wasn’t cancer. It made since, her fatigue, her “old bones” hurting, and even the headaches. I was just praying that I was wrong. She was supposed to be here when I got married, and help me with my kids. She was supposed to always be here with me. I looked at Michael across the table from me and told him the possible news. I asked him, if it came down to it, could Gam move in with is here? He just stared at me and nodded. “Anything for that woman, Madds. She took me in like one of her own, and I want to do anything to help her.” That made me feel a little better, that if push come to shove she would have someone to care for her. The problem would be getting her to leave her home in Twinbrook and move here. But we would cross that bridge when we came to it. I not so patiently waited to hear the news from the doctors.
I talked to Gam daily making sure she was alright, and probably bothered her more than helped her. I couldn’t help it. After hearing the news I was afraid that I would wake up the next day and she would be gone.
I had nightmares where I attended her funeral, and was constantly dreaming of graveyards. Kind of morbid I know, but the constant worry and not sleeping was taking its toll on me. I tried to work as though nothing was bothering me, but it just wasn’t possible. Leslie pulled me to the side one afternoon and told me that she too lost a grandmother to cancer; took him in two weeks. She knows how earthshattering the news could be, but at the moment we weren’t sure what Gam had, if anything. She told me to buck up, and cherish the time I had left with her, and stop worrying myself into a frenzy. She was right. Gam wasn’t gone yet and I hadn’t lost anything. She let me work with the horses the rest of the week to help calm myself down.
I had grown quite attached to one in particular. Her name was Lady and her coat was a golden honey. The owner of Lady had told Leslie that she wasn’t sure what she was going to do with her once she got better, because she just couldn’t afford taking care of the horse anymore. My heart saddened with this news because Lady was special and deserved a home where she was treated, well, like a lady. Without me knowing, Leslie had been watching me work with all the horses, and came to a decision. She walked out to where I was brushing her and asked me, “Do you love this horse? She is quite special.” I nodded very fast and said, “This old gal is perfect, aren’t ya Lady?” Without missing a beat Lady nuzzled my face and I laughed. “Didn’t you say that you always wanted a horse Madison? Why don’t you take Lady here? That’ll mean the world to Mrs. Hart. I knows she feel terrible not being able to keep her anymore.” I knew that I wanted her to be mine, but I needed to talk to Michael about it first. Taking care of a horse required full time care and a full wallet. I had my parent’s money, but we were living on that and paying for school, and I didn’t want to get the horse and then be in same boat as Mrs. Hart. She deserved a longtime home, not to be bounced around. I told Leslie as much, and that I would need to think about it.
Lady wasn’t being cleared to go home for another couple of weeks anyway. When I got home, I had a surprise waiting for me. Gam was sitting on the couch waiting for me. Michael was there too. I looked at Gam a little closer and saw that she had lost some weight in the short time that we had been gone.
“Why don’t you quit staring and come and give your Gam some sugar?!” I jumped a little when I heard her voice. I hadn’t realized that I was staring but it was hard not to. I ran over and hugged her and then sat down. She cleared her throat and looked me in the eyes. “Now Madison, you know I went to the doctor, and it’s not looking good kid. Apparently I have bone cancer, and it’s not in the early stages neither. It is too late to try the surgery, and I just want to live my life, so radiation is not an option…” She was still talking but I zoned out.
I felt like my lungs had just filled up with water. I couldn’t breath. Somewhere while she was talking Michael grabbed my hand but I didn’t notice. The only things that were running through my mind were how this could be true. It was Gam, my hero. Gam, the brave. The one who held me together while I was so fragile. Who was going to put her back together when she broke? I just didn’t know.
 

Hello There!

If there is still anyone there to say hello to! I just want to apologize for the lack of presence lately. Its been forever and there just isnt any excuse! My neice is doing great, thank you everyone! I wont ramble on anymore, but the next chapter of the millers is coming your way! 🙂 Thank you all for waiting on me!

Hazaaa!

I just want to thank everyone who reads my story and comments! I just hit 2000 views and I couldnt be more thrilled! I started writing this for fun a couple months ago, and never dreamed that I would have ten followers subscribing to my story, or even hit 500 views much less 2000!!!! I cant believe the response that I have received and I just wanted to say thank you! I hope you all have a Happy New Year! My next goal is to hit 5000 views! Lets make it happen and I will do something special! Woo Hoo! 🙂

Michelle

Chapter 5 – Growing Up

The next few months passed by in a blur of activity. After that night at prom with Michael, we realized that what we shared was the kind of love only found in fairy tales. I still look back at the day that Michael let me in, and while his story is tragic I still smile. That was the moment I think I fell in love with him. He grew up in an atmosphere that shunned love and growing, and yet he became a beautiful person. At Prom he was so carefree while twirling me around the dance floor, and when we won Prom King and Queen, we were so stunned they actually had to lead us to the stage to accept. The thought that our peers loved us enough to vote for us, was truly touching. And now with graduation looming nearer we had some things to talk about.

“Michael, what are your plans after you graduate? Do you have something in mind?” He was doodling on his homework while we sat at the table. “I am not sure, I have kind of always wanted to be a cop, you know, to put criminals behind bars. But I am not sure if they would take me.” I stared at him then, and saw what was behind his eyes, doubt.

“Michael, you are not your parents. You are separate people, and you are good, to the core.” He shifted in his chair to look at me, “Well I am certain of one thing. I want to be where ever you are Madds.”

I was ecstatic! I had been worried that after we graduated he would want to go back to the city, and I would have gone with him if he wanted until a week ago. Gam had told me that when I turn eighteen, my parents’ estate becomes mine. I was about to come into a large sum of money that would help establish my future, and I knew what I was going to do with it. She also informed me that my mom’s old childhood home in Appaloosa Plains would become mine as well. Gam had been renting it out all these years, and it was vacant now. It was a ranch, and I had always wanted to be a Veterinarian. To be able to own horses and start my own clinic is something I have always dreamed about, and now it was possible. Everything was going to plan, but I don’t know if I could have left without Michael. “I am planning on moving to Appaloosa Plains, my family has a ranch there and I want to take care of animals.” He smiled and said, “I just have one question, can I be a cop there?” I breathed out a sigh of relief, and slapped his arm. “You my dear, will make an awesome Sheriff of Appaloosa Plains.”

We laughed the rest of the afternoon away, planning china patterns and other first place items.

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The day of graduation I felt nerves that I didn’t even know existed. I wasn’t just closing this chapter on school and childhood days, I was moving on to the next phase in my life. Right before I was putting on the cap and gown, Gam came into my bedroom and gave me a present.

“Now Madison, I wanted you to have something before you left, I have been holding on to this for a while, and I was just waiting for the right time to give it to you. It’s from your mom, and I think she would want you to have it today.” She handed me a package, kissed my forhead, and walked out of the room. I opened the box to find a necklace and a letter. I set the necklace down to read.

My dearest Daughter,

I am so sorry that I am not there with you right now, but know that I love you with all my heart. I am so proud of the woman you have become, and always will be. Please know that I would never leave you on purpose, and whatever took me away, know that I fought it as hard as I could. I have made a lot of mistakes in my life, but you were never one of them. You are perfect; don’t ever let anyone tell you otherwise. It breaks my heart now knowing that if you are reading this then I am not there to watch you shine. But I promise that I always be there with you in spirit, watching over you, protecting you, and loving you. If you ever need me, I will be there. I left my locket with Gam to give to you. It has been passed down through generations, and I had hoped to be there to do it myself like Gam did with me, but this letter will have to suffice. Hopefully one day you will give it your daughter to remind her of her roots, and where she came from. I love you daughter, and I will see you again.

Love always, in this world and the next, Mom

As I stared at the letter in my hands, I realized that I was crying. I was overwhelmed with happiness that my mom still had the ability to surprise me, even in death. I was sad, because I wanted her here with me so badly that at times I thought I couldn’t breathe. But in the end, I just stood up, and asked mom if she would be there for me at graduation. I wanted her to see what her baby was doing with her life; and that she was happy.

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After packing my bags, it seemed real. I was leaving Gams. I was going to be moving to a new city. And I was moving in with Michael. All of these thoughts kept running through my mind. I was happy, anxious, scared, ready… What if we weren’t ready? What if what we had was high school love, not real life love? I had never been with anyone else besides him. We weren’t married. I just didn’t know. Then I heard him calling my name and somehow none of that mattered. When he smiled at me I still felt that spark from the first day that we met. It didn’t matter that I was unsure about us, because I was sure about him. When I met him at Gams door, he pulled me outside to where we had that talk so long ago. He seemed shaky, and I thought that maybe he was having seconds thoughts as well. He pulled me along and then suddenly he stopped.

Without looking at me, he spoke, “Madison Miller, this is the spot where I bared my soul to you. This is the spot where I thought no matter how good you were, you could never accept me for who I am. This is the same spot where I knew that I loved you and I knew we would spend the rest of our lives together. So, it seems appropriate that it should be the spot where I ask you to be mine.”

He dropped on one knee then, and looked up at me with a smile on his face. “Madison Miller, will you marry me?”

I couldn’t believe that moment’s ago, I was wondering if he had cold feet about moving in together, when in reality he was scared about proposing!

In a voice that sounded nothing like me, I confidently said, “Michael Rancik, this is the spot where you let me into your soul. This is the spot where I knew that I would love you forever. This is also the spot where I said, yes, I will marry you!”

I accepted the ring and he hugged me so tight I thought I would explode. After that we said goodbye to Gam, which was harder than I thought it would be. I wasn’t just saying goodbye to her, but to this house where so many wonderful memories were made, the little girl who not so long ago felt defeated and alone, and also to my old life. I am so thankful that I had Gam to take me in when I was broken, and she nourished me back to health. I could not imagine where I would be without her.

“I love you so much Gam. Thank you for everything.” I whispered as we hugged each other one last time. “Now listen here doll, I love you too. And don’t you worry about me, I will be just fine. Now hurry up, you got a long drive ahead of ya, and you’re keeping that hunk of burning love waiting!” We laughed and waved goodbye as I took one last look at the house that became my safe haven and sqeezed my fiance’s hand as we drove off into the sunset towards our future.