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'I'll catch you all around the bend'

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By Brad Bradberry

From the time I was diagnosed with cancer about 14 months ago, I wondered what the subject of my final column would be and when I would write it. Well, I’m no closer to a subject and have been wondering how much longer I could hold out, but now the time has come.

Like everything else during my life, I have put it off until the last minute.

I’ve been in home hospice for three days now and am able to write this because my son from Georgia has arrived for a final visit and brought along his laptop. I find myself pretty much confined to a Cadillac bed complete with controls. I can go up or down but have a problem getting out, and could not sit in a chair for any length of time. So I find myself in our den writing this in front of a fireplace and TV. How ironic — watching TV around the clock in my final days after a lifetime of reading and writing.

Of course, it’s just as ironic that someone who loves to cook, but now can’t eat, would become attached to the Food Channel.

So what am I thinking today? “It’s been a good ride,” stated one brother as he bade me goodbye early this morning. “We’ve come a long way and can only count our blessings.”

They are not hard to figure out. I could brag a long time about my four children, seven grandchildren and wonderful wife, my three brothers and, of course, my mom. And that’s just for starters. There have been aunts and uncles and more cousins than I can count.

I discovered at any early age that writing was a love and that I could make a living at it if I could also learn the ins and outs of publishing newspapers. I have done a respectable job of it, if I can believe what others tell me.

I have made good friends around the country, but none better than in Evergreen, Columbine and Conifer. I have been lucky enough to share lunch with many of them during the last months.

Throughout my life, about 40 of my high school classmates have stayed in close touch and share much love. Unbelievably, those relationships have provided a sense of comfort that cannot be replaced.

I have become convinced that most people take life for granted. I surely did. I planned to live to 80 or 85, but of course it’s not to be. I figure I have three to four weeks at most.

So now this computer is getting heavy on my lap, and that’s as good an excuse as any to cut off this column. To you all, I appreciate your reading my years of drivel.

I’ll catch you around the bend.

Brad Bradberry is the former publisher of Evergreen Newspapers.