Josh’s Story

Site created on March 26, 2019

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Over the last couple months Josh has been experiencing a nagging pain/discomfort in his back right side/kidney area.  Due to the large amounts of driving and sitting in a work truck for his new job, we thought that it was something muscular-related.  Last Monday evening (March 18, 2019), however, he felt nauseous after dinner. This, paired with some other on and off symptoms, forced us to get it checked out.  We were all down in Marshall at the time, so Tuesday morning we packed up and headed back to the cities. We checked in at West Health Urgent Care that afternoon and after discussing symptoms with the doctor, he also thought it to be more muscular-related.  He didn’t think that it was necessary to run any images or x-rays, but ordered some standard blood tests and ran a urine sample. Not long after, he returned and said that he decided to run a couple other blood tests. They were not related to the symptoms he was having, but he  just felt that he needed to run them.  After running these additional tests he returned again and said that the tests came back abnormal and he would like to do a CT Scan after all. About an hour later, the doctor came back into the room.  With deep compassion and care in his eyes, he looked at Josh and I and said, “I’m sorry, it’s not good. They found some spots and they were cancer.” The kids were still in the room so he said it quietly and asked if we wanted a nurse to take the kids on a walk while we went over the results of the test. CANCER. Never in our minds did we think it would be cancer.  A kidney infection? Maybe. A kidney stone? Most likely. But cancer? In a moment’s time our lives had completely turned upside down. We went over the results of the CT Scan and he said that there was a mass on his appendix and several “good sized” lesions on his liver and lower abdominal area and that they were cancerous. He suggested that Josh be admitted to Abbott Northwestern Hospital that evening where they would run some additional tests including a biopsy of the liver. Nothing prepares you for this kind of news.  Nothing prepares you for this diagnosis. Nothing prepares you for making the kind of decisions we were going to be making over the next several days. We made arrangements for the kids to be with family for the week and Josh and I drove to Abbott.

Newest Update

Journal entry by Christine Richardson

It’s National Dog Day, I guess. Hard to believe I know that, but honestly, this post isn’t so much about Daisy as it is about Josh. Well, it’s about Josh AND Daisy!!

I rescued Daisy from the Golden Valley Humane Society pre-Josh! I was single, living in the Bryn Mawr neighborhood in Minneapolis and had always wanted a dog! I had just started running and I really thought it would be good to have a BIG dog I could run with, one who would protect me on the trail and in my house! I had dreams of training and certifying her to be a therapy dog. Oh the life we would have...

Well, Daisy, was not cut out to be a watch dog. OR a therapy dog. According to the vet and Daisy’s small paws, she would most likely not get bigger than 35-40 lbs! Awesome! I just adopted a runt! She also had some emotional trauma as she was in a puppy mill and likely abused. She was skittish around nearly everyone, but especially men. She hated men! In fact, she would nip and do weird chattering things with her teeth. So much for THOSE plans.

But Daisy WAS good at helping me pick my soon-to-be-husband!

Josh and I met at Applebees in Golden Valley, now Theresa’s Mexican Restaurant. The Fire Department had their pancake breakfast one December morning and I was there supporting my brother-in-law, Scott.

Josh poured me coffee and walked away. The rest was history. He called me that week and we talked on the phone every single day. We never ran out of things to talk about. I kept waiting and waiting, and finally he asked me out on a date!

The night of our first date he came to pick me up at my place in Minneapolis where I was living, and before I let him all the way into my house, I explained that I had a dog. And...that she did not like men. I told him to maybe walk slow and not make any abrupt movements! 🤣

Well, he walked in, sat down on the couch and Daisy literally followed him (without biting and nipping), JUMPED up on the couch next to him and put her paws on his chest, around his neck! Seriously! Like a hug!!

I. Was. Stunned.

Josh looked at me and laughing said, “oh yeah, killer dog! I see what you mean, she really hates men!”

Daisy sat there with Josh, wagging her tail as happy as can be!! After Josh and I got married, Daisy started sleeping on HIS side of the bed. When we would get home, she would always greet him first. She loved Josh and knew from the very beginning he was a good match for me!

A week after Josh died, we noticed Daisy crying and whining. I kept wondering what was wrong. She didn’t seem hurt or in pain. Until I realized that she probably WAS hurting.

A broken heart. You can’t always see it. But the pain is still there. Daisy loved Josh from the moment she met him...her instincts were right on! He was the one!

On this National Dog day I reminisce about my sweet pup, but mostly about my first date with Josh and missing the LOVE of my with a broken heart.
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