Just woke from a deep 3 hour nap and made it only to a Dead Sea salt (thanks Anna!) bath. I share this for often I pretend to be normal and run a busy enough life, but then my body just stops in its tracks like a tired toddler and says NO.
I was once again humbled by the remarkable generosity of friends this week. At 1pm Wednesday I showed up at The Bird to realize that Amy McKnight, Mason and Lane had masterminded a very spontaneous recording session with friends including my niece and nephew for unrehearsed Fight Song and All you need is Love. My heart melted when I walked into this scene and as others slowly trickled in . My brother Pete sported a huge Movember moustache. We sang into a central mike together, then I tried a solo soprano and then alto track, and finally Bebe and Josie (8, 10) got very brave and sang a track. Lane and team will work magic to make that into something presentable that I can then listen to during radiation. Incredible. Seriously who does that?! This is part of the magic medicine that keeps me here. I am ever grateful.
Despite a fabulous teacher conference for Bebe i had a tough moment this morning when visiting her superb school counselor who at one point suggested that with brain metastasis it can be important to seize the day and have the tough conversations early as you don’t know what havoc will be worked on your brain. I fucking lost it. She didn’t mean to be mean. But honestly even though I freak myself out once in awhile imagining “the end” (which obviously none of us know anyway so I cut those short with “i am here now”) I have certainly not processed the idea of losing it mentally or not being able to speak. It is unfathomable. The mere thought breaks my heart. But for now I so trust my doctors’ confidence that this is Very manageable for the time being. I just have to roll with that while also writing my kids letters and savoring every day. This is the ongoing tension….live as if you have a year or two but believe fervently that you could live for 26 like others we know. Every few months seems to bring us further discoveries.
I’m done with one cycle of chemo Xeloda. I don’t want to get too excited but the chin numbness, jaw pain, and skull bruising is gone for the first time since Labor Day! The price to pay has been feet and hands that easily blister. A lesson painfully learned after my feet were covered in them. Ouch . Lots of thick lotion and the Dead Sea salts are helping. But I have been far too lazy and it it time to get back in the pool and on the trail before I turn to mush. I’m excited to have our nephew Perry joining Creighton’s parents out here for Thanksgiving, and the kids even more so.
In between writing I’m alternating a few reads…Hillbilly Elegy about Appalachia, Big Magic by Eat, Pray,Love Elizabeth Gilbert who writes about the fact that ideas seek people out, and Mindfulness as Medicine by a physician turned Monk. I finished fabulous French chef Eric Ripert’s 32 Yolks which dives into the craziness of haute cuisine. I need to motivate to write more regularly myself. Time to get this baby moving!!!
This last rainy weekend the kids and I had sleepovers in the Queen bed (c and my brother were fishing on the cold Klamath), and purged toys and just stuff that has been around too long. It felt great. You could argue that’s not a life well spent, but sometimes I really love a lazy declutterinf weekend. Before that unseasonable warmth fooled our magnolia below into full bloom. Simple pleasures. I say thanks everyday for my family and all of you who lift me up. Happy thanksgiving!