Community rallies with cakeBridget Zinn can attract people even in cyberspace. She rhapsodizes about cake, warns about the dangers of low-rise jeans and discusses the need for a “miracle haircut.”
By: Maria Lockwood, Superior Telegram
Bridget Zinn can attract people even in cyberspace. She rhapsodizes about cake, warns about the dangers of low-rise jeans and discusses the need for a “miracle haircut.” In her upbeat, chatty blog the 31-year-old also tackles cancer.
“She’s definitely going to win this thing with attitude,” said her father, Dick Zinn.
The Solon Springs graduate, who now lives in Portland, Ore., has labeled her shots – the Hulk Shot stimulates white blood cell growth while the bee-sting boosts red blood cell production – found that Supergirl underwear work wonders and even located a chuckle in learning that “Anti-Nausea Suppositories Are A Girl’s Best Friend.”
“How she has carried herself, written about herself and written about her experiences makes me believe if anyone can overcome this, Bridget is that person,” said Joe Wicklund, a childhood friend of Zinn’s.
“I think she tells her story better than anyone,” said Zinn’s father, who lives in Port Townsend, Wash. “Her personality just shines through there.”
A good way to describe the young adult author is “odds-breaker,” said Wicklund, admissions counselor at the College of St. Scholastica. This March, Zinn was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer after a trip to a naturopath for what she thought was migraines. She ended up in the ER, then the ICU, “strapped to a table where I wasn’t even allowed to like get up and go to the bathroom by myself without causing a major incident involving multiple medical personnel,” Zinn wrote in her blog. “This, by the way, was not the most fun I’ve ever had.”
The diagnosis was a surprise. Zinn doesn’t smoke or drink. She is a vegetarian who walks, bikes and stays in shape. The natural redhead slathers on sunscreen and only occasionally indulges in cake.
“She’s doing everything she can; doing everything right,” her father said. “She’s determined this is a game she isn’t going to lose.”
He said Zinn approaches the topic with humor, albeit sometimes black humor.
“It’s not the end of the world, it’s just a challenge,” he said.
And she has a constant caregiver in her new husband, Barrett Dowell.
“I can’t think of a better caregiver for Bridget,” said Dowell’s mother, Gloria Dowell of Lake Nebagamon.
The couple has been together for 14 years since they met at the 4-H milk bar at the Head of the Lakes Fair.
“They’re soulmates,” Gloria Dowell said.
“Those two were just joined at the hip,” said Dick Zinn. “No question they were forever.”
They were married at Legacy Emanuel hospital before Zinn had a tumor removed from her colon.
“She said, ‘See Barry, all it got to get me to say ‘Yes’ is a morphine drip,’” said Zinn’s father, Dick.
They had a second wedding with family and friends under a Portland bridge. The chemotherapy and biotherapy Zinn was on wiped her out, however, and the wedding party circled around the couple’s bed to eat Thai food and cake. It was a moment Zinn likened to John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s wedding – high and in bed.
Wednesday, Sept. 30, the community will rally together to raise funds to help pay for medical expenses so the couple doesn’t end up in “debtor’s prison,” which Zinn describes in her blog as a “cakeless place.”
To see more of Bridget’s blog, go to www.bridgetzinn.
To volunteer or donate, call Mary at 374-2467 or Gloria at 374-3160.