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Yahoo: Driving Through Grief – She crossed the country in an RV to heal after cancer and losing her husband

On June 30, 2013, Janet Arnold, typed her first blog entry. It read: This summer, I am going on a journey, literally, in my RV. I am traveling for an undefined amount of time. I am on a journey of thankfulness and healing and gratitude.

The three years that preceded that entry and her trip can only be described as a harrowing. In February 2010, at the age of 59, Janet was diagnosed with breast cancer. Later doctors discovered that the cancer had returned in the same breast.

In May, Jim was diagnosed with salivary gland cancer. It came as a shock — neither Jim nor Janet were smokers, in fact they were avid athletes. That entire summer he endured chemo and radiation treatments. But nine months later, the cancer metastasized in his left hip. On October 17, he died.

“He was the love of my life,” Janet says wistfully. “We met in our late 30’s and it was a first relationship for me. I had chosen to be single my whole life. It was the first marriage for both of us. We had no children but we had the most amazing relationship. There was so much respect and love between us. It wasn’t perfect but it was pretty darn close.”

One day, while driving home from checkup with her doctor, Janet passed a dealership with cute Winnebago Era parked out front. “Jim and I had talked about getting a van, so I U-turned it and went in and checked it out.”

At the end of May, Janet traded in Jim’s BMW Z-3 and purchased a Roadtrek SS Agile RV. On July 13, she pulled out of her driveway in San Diego and hit the road — solo — to begin her trip of thankfulness, healing, and gratitude.

To read the full story by Yahoo, click here.

About Rebecca Smith

Rebecca Smith is a Wisconsin native currently living in Illinois with her husband, Eric, and two dogs, Maggie and Grace. She enjoys hiking, biking, kayaking and, of course, camping in cabins and park models.

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