Cory had cancer.
In 2001 she was diagnosed with an agressive Stage II breast cancer.
She had excellent doctors and did all the things one does with cancer. After surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation; she had reasonable expectations that she'd beaten it. She was cancer-free for seven years.
And then in 2008, after a routine check-up, it was discovered Cory's cancer had returned.
Her breast cancer had moved and taken up residence in a new neighborhood--her lungs. And after surgery to remove one of the lobes of her lungs, Cory spent the next three-and-a-half years in and out of radiation and chemo. When cancer comes back and moves to another part of the body, it's a totally different ball game than when one has it it the first time. The odds are more steep. It didn't matter to Cory. She kept working and travelling. always talking and planning for the future. Always smiling. Always worrying about everyone else more than herself. It's just who she was.
Cory fought her cancer with every bit of courage and strength she could summon until she had absolutely nothing left to give. And then she died quickly and quietly. She couldn't have planned it better if she tried.
I knew she was heading out, I just didn't know when. Her last weeks were truly an amazing time between us. We were able to share so many memories of the life we lived together for 30 years. We had something extra special and we both knew it.
For as much of a public person I am in the comic book industry; behind the scenes I'm a very private person. I don't really have much to say beyond what I'm saying here.
But I thought I'd share something with you.
I'm not quite sure when I drew it or how it came to reside in this little frame. Cory was never sure either. But we both remembered it was a little present at some point early on as we were falling in love. The colors aren't according to Beanworld canon. There are trees along the horizon. Beanish has red shoes! This drawing is older than than the official Beanworld continuity.
Wherever we lived, this little drawing was always somewhere in the bedroom. It might not be accurate in a Beanworld sense but it is perfectly true from a Cory and Larry point-of-view. Beanish and Dreamishness were born in personal comics that I drew just for Cory. Most of those comics will remain private until I'm gone too. You can read about that here (second column--2/3 way down) and continued here .Can't remember which cat was responsible for breaking the glass but it has a nice Duchampian feel to it.
No one loved life more than Cory. Others have written far more eloquently about the impression Cory made upon them. Charles wrote an amazing piece. Heidi built upon it. and Ivy kind of wrapped it up.
People have asked about Cory's favorite charities.
Cory supported virtually every animal cause there is.
But the two that stand out most in my memory are the Amboseli Trust for Elephants and Best Friends Animal Society.
As for me?
I'm doing as well as one can expect to given the circumstances.
But I never forget that I was married to Cory and for three decades I was one of the luckiest men on the face of the earth. After all--she really was my Dreamishness.