My son Jordan's new wife Chelsea has osteosarcoma, with a tumor in her left femur. Diagnosed a month and a half before their Wedding day, she began an aggressive chemotherapy plan with infusions every three weeks. The wedding landed on week three of the first round, and normally by then her white blood count should've recovered to almost normal standards.
Unfortunately, two nights before their wedding day, she fell ill with a fever and was hospitalized. Her white blood cell counts were dangerously low and she was considered a medical emergency. The doctors put her on antibiotics, tylenol, and gave her injections to help her white blood cell count improve.
Along with this, Norm and I and our daughter Tasia had gotten Covid. Thankfully we tested negative just in time for the gathering, but we spent ten days in isolation prior. Not only we're we concerned about spreading it to anyone else, but my father, who lives in the condo below us, was Jordan's best man. (Yes! Jordan asked his grandfather to stand with him. So special!) But it put me in a panic that he should stay healthy and away from us or anyone who could make him sick in any way.
The weather was also unseasonally cool, and everyone was on constant weather forecast watch. Rain, rain, rain. The wedding had to be outside in order to protect the bride as much as possible, as her immunity was at an all time low.
This all felt like a moot point with the bride-to-be in the hospital. I was on the phone trying to reach the hospital chaplain, fearing the wedding might have to happen in the hospital chapel or even Chelsea's hospital room, as these two were determined to get married, no matter what.
As fate and God would have it, the weather cleared up for that one afternoon and the doctors agreed to give Chelsea a day pass to get married.
This wedding was the most emotional and heartfelt ceremony I'd ever been to. I sobbed and I wasn't alone.
Not only was it special for me because my son was finally marrying ~ despite incredible hurdles ~ the love of his life, and that my dad was standing with him, but it was also the birthday of my dearest friend Donna, who passed away from cancer in 2020. Her husband Malcolm agreed to perform the service and it was so meaningful to have him there.
Chelsea's dad wheeled her down the aisle, she with tears streaming down her face, and Jordan, visibly emotional, with his eyes on her alone. They helped her onto the platform where she bravely stood for her vows, then again to the registry table and finally back into the wheelchair where, as husband and wife, Jordan wheeled her back down. When he reached the end, away from the family seated in rows, he got on his knees before her and laid his head in her lap.
And I knew then, that they were going to be all right.
Ladies and gentlemen, Mr. and Mrs. Jordan and Chelsea Strauss.
The wedding night was spent in the hospital. The nurses were kind enough to bring an extra bed into Chelsea's room, and decorated for the newly weds. They applauded and cheered when Jordan wheeled his new bride onto the cancer ward, and made a fuss over Chelsea's incredibly beautiful dress.
Along with this fairy tale and seemingly unreality, is real life. Despite the hardship and challenges, work must be done, bills must be paid, and I must put my butt in the chair. I can't believe the work Norm and I actually accomplished through the whirlwind 2022 has been so far, but I'm happy to announce the schedule of the next four books ready for preorder now.
Murder at the Circus is already out in paperback. Ebooks are releasing May 24. This was a fun one to write, a lot of it from Scout's point of view and his special relationship with one large elephant.
I hope you enjoy it!