The Times Record

Interesting article in our hometown newspaper today, The Times Record:


Pretty cool for her to see this in the paper.

I’ll admit it’s been tough to find words lately to maintain the positive and inspiring spirit that I’ve witnessed out of my mother.  I guess I’m just not sure how we can describe her current position without turning the message much more dour than it’s previously been.

With that, I’m asking for your help.  I want to share stories about mom through the years.  Funny, touching, or just examples of who she is… it doesn’t matter.  I want to hear anything that makes you think of Nan Hinds that I can share with people on this site.

As always, we continue to be touched by the outpouring of support we’ve received through all of this.  I feel guilty for asking for anything else, but any stories we can share would help brighten her days….

Thank you all again,

– Todd

NSH Stickers Again


Been a few days since a post, so I figured we could take a look at some of the awesome Team NSH sticker submissions we’ve seen lately.

The first one comes in from one of mom’s longtime co-workers and friends, Dottie Timberlake:

Dear Todd,

Thanks so much for your honesty about your mom’s condition.  It brought tears but helps us friends in the process of understanding her illness.  You are doing a great job.

I have attached two photos with a sticker on our golf cart.  There is also one on the back window of our car that will be heading back to Maine soon.  Thank you for sending me the stickers.

The first photo is of our golf cart parked at the Square in The Villages.  Hundreds of carts park here throughout the day but especially in the evening when there is live entertainment.  Team NSH is at work in The Villages, Florida.

The second photo is of Dottie giving you a close up view of the NHS sticker on our golf cart.

Dottie Timberlake

Mom’s cousin Ann has brought Team NSH across the Pacific, and into Hawaii.

“TeamNSH has arrived in Maui today, and the same thoughts and prayers are coming from here! Will update pics as we travel in the next couple weeks! Love you and thinking of you and your entire family often!


A group of friends and I ran a Zombie Infested 5K obstacle course over the weekend. People were encouraged to dress up and make teams.  What better spirit to fight off the Zombie Apocalypse than with the motto of Team NSH, Fight Like Hell

Before the race:

And after the water soaked, mud covered course:

You’re damn right I finished alive.  Note the lone remaining red flag hanging from my belt.

We’ll wrap up with one from Dad:

“Here is a pic that we all in LA (Lower Alabama) got I kick out of. One Friday evening we went out for apps on an outside deck at a local restaurant, and Mom, true other spirit, had to try a raw oyster. Maybe it wasn’t her favorite southern delicacy but to her credit, she have it a try. We found it funny primarily because it shows mom as she really is.”

It doesn’t change who we are

This was a difficult weekend.

I’ve stayed determined to keep a positive tone throughout this blog, and as much as I’d love to sugarcoat this, it’s not fair to anyone, anything or the situation at hand to say anything differently.

There were moments of overwhelming sadness, coupled with truly special moments amongst family and close friends.  The disease has certainly progressed, and while things may look bleak to many from the outside, it has yet to change who mom is.  Dad has repeated a refrain which I’ve adopted and followed closely, when he says “Cancer doesn’t change who your mother is.”

Every time she started a phone call over the weekend, she’d begin by asking about one of her Uncle’s or beginning the day by asking me how the Sox did last night.  She would maintain her ladylike disposition and apologize profusely for a bout of hiccups brought upon by her medication, or when she’d apologize for rinsing her mouth out in the sink to try to alleviate some of the discomfort from the increase of canker sores.  Every text message Scott and I took from our wives was met with mom passing along her love.  Rather than let the crushing reality of her situation engulf her every thought, she’s managed to keep her focus where she wants it: her family, her friends, and maintaining a normalcy to her daily life.

That simple motto is something more than a simple motto.  There’s just something about that phrase that is so true and profound that it demands deeper thought and introspection.  On the surface, it’s totally accurate to suggest that aside from any physical changes, cancer doesn’t change who anyone is.  It has the potential to reveal who someone truly is, both the patient, and the loved ones.  It reveals, repeats and magnifies some of the things we already know about people while at the same time exposing some of what we don’t know.

Mom is the epitome of these revelations.  I’ve always known mom was stubborn, but never knew how damned tough she is.  I knew she was willing to fight for what she believed in, but I never saw what a passionate, tireless fighter this woman is.  She has taken the hand she’s been dealt and made her own adjustments.  There are moments of paralyzing pain, which she will handle with taking a deep breath in, pausing and continuing her sentence less than a full second later.

I knew that she loved her family, but no one knew the depths.

I knew that she was committed to her faith, but never expected to see this level of resolution when push came to shove.

I knew that she was positive, but never knew human beings were capable of being this positive.

I knew that she was a teacher at heart, but I thought that she was done teaching me life lessons on a daily basis.

I’ve learned more from her during this process than I ever would have imagined.  Mom would call that a silver lining, while the rest of the world would call it unfortunate to have to come in these circumstances.  In the spirit of my mother, I’m determined to take as many lessons from her while I can, because from what I’ve seen the last five days, I know she has plenty left to teach me.

Dad’s comment about mom is simple, yet deeply profound.   His words remind Jimmy V quote:

“Cancer can take away all of my physical abilities, but it cannot touch my mind, it cannot touch my heart and it cannot touch my soul, and those three things are going to carry on forever.”

Mom’s heart, mind and soul will carry on forever in the memories we’ll all cherish and share, and more directly, inside all of us that she has ever touched.