Before you cross the street take my hand.

Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.
— John Lennon

2018 has arrived! Wishing you much abundance, love, and joy in this year ahead.

As we head into this brand new year remember to take those breaths you have in you a little deeper, hug those you love a little tighter, and be sure to make your plans accordingly. 

Life can make some sharp and unexpected curves in the road - even in the freshness of a new year.

We try with all our strength to straighten the unexpected twists in order to continue the journey. Sometimes, all we can do if the curve is tight enough is to find meaning in what is happening around us and navigate accordingly.

Last Thursday morning as I recovered from the joy of Christmas with my family I began my multifaceted plans for all that I want to accomplish in 2018.

Life had other plans. I found myself in the Veterinarian’s office that afternoon as my dog Izzy had started the day having difficulty breathing and not wanting to eat. She is a Yellow Labrador who cherishes every morsel of food so I knew something serious was wrong.

As I stared at the x-rays they took of her my “planning for 2018” crumbled. My Veterinarian shared the devastating news that sweet Isabella had one week left on the planet. She was diagnosed with stomach cancer that was working its way into her lungs. Cancer was once again rearing its ugly head in my life.

Nothing else really seemed to matter in that moment in time. Nothing. My sweet Izzy needed me to be there for her.

Then I had to share the devastating news with my family – those other people in her life who love her deeply as well. It was equally crushing to my heart to have to crush their hearts with the news. 

Izzy has been my rock over the last 8 years since she came into my life. She has been in countless Victory Letters as she has guided me through so many life changes, arriving as a puppy just a month after my mother’s death in 2009.

Now I am dealing with the reality that my life may have to go on without Izzy.

As the days continue on since her diagnosis, the question of course I have been asking myself is how do I keep up with planning and being optimistic about the year ahead with the possibility of my dear companion no longer at my side?

My grown children Bailey and Travis were instantly on a plane to be with her. It’s interesting what love can do to shine a light on everyone’s spirits. Being together to rally through this has been an amazing gift to give each other.

As I write this to you she is laying here at my feet as if everything is normal. A positive outcome from this is that we have upgraded her diet from kibbles to steak and eggs :)

We are looking into alternative medicine along with standard western medicine. If you have any recommendations I would love to hear your thoughts. Simply reply to this email.

The future is uncertain for each of us and it is times likes this I am reminded once again that each breath of life we are given needs to be appreciated every single day.

As I finally start to embark on my “planning for 2018” what I want to talk about a lot in the next 364 days is the critical importance of a positive mindset to get us through the roughest roads.

Here’s to my sweet Izzy who continues with her battle. Every day of her life is another blessing.

Onward we go into this year of 2018!

To Your Success and Victories,

- Cheri

Cheri Ruskus
Business Strategist and Founder of the Victory Circles

Phone: 303-652-1718