When Mark lost his job last month, a friend grinned,
“When one door closes, another opens…
Sometimes, 17 others open.”
And it’s been true.
Possibilities have been popping up ever since.
Possible new paths for Mark.
And, surprisingly, hints of possible new paths for me.
Just hints, at this point. Vague invitations that may mean crossroads ahead.
But, several of them.
Open doors (even hints of open doors) are deliciously scary.
On Christmas evening, 2009, as I lay recovering from my first round of chemo, our vacationing neighbours lost their home to fire.
In the fourteen months since then, we’ve watched…
As their cute little house stood vacant and charred.
Then was swapped for a gaping hole.
As a new foundation was poured. New walls were framed. Drywall and gorgeous new windows were installed.
And, this week, as cozy nighttime lighting announced that their new house is becoming a home.
All the while, the young fivesome trudged contentedly through typical family routines.
Never guessing how their resilience was rippling.
Or how an unknown neighbour was rebuilding right along.
I’ve been in a weird place, lately.
Somewhere where I don’t know where I am.
I’ve fallen off my anti-cancer wagons. And then beaten myself up, accordingly.
I’ve slipped into my pre-c self-loathing. And then beaten myself up, accordingly.
I’ve tried and succeeded. I’ve tried and failed.
But we’re alive, healthy and happy. March break is just around the corner. Mark’s employment story looks bright.
And the canal is still open — and perfect. March fourth.
My axillary ultra-sound this morning was perfect.
Huge thanks for the good luck and good vibes that are keeping me healthy.
I was thinking…
Since my ex-cancer took 44 years to appear, I’m not due for more until I’m at least 88.
How about I wait and worry then.
Three weeks ago today, Mark lost his job.
It was no laughing matter.
But, thanks to a whack of relevant AD quotes, we laughed a lot that day.
Often, it’s not what happens so much as how we frame it.
This weekend, I did a hard-core search for a healthy way to look at braggarts, bullies and poseurs.
Thanks to mulling, sharing and listening to you, I think I struck gold:
I laugh just thinking these terms.
Bring it on.
Life is short. And I’m the hard-earned new me.
So, why must I continue to let braggarts, bullies and poseurs get under my skin?
Really. I need to know why.
So I can stop.
I’m extremely grateful that we’re alive and healthy and happy.
Still, between the upheaval of Mark’s job juggling and health worries for myself and others, I’m feeling pretty run down.
Run down yet sleepless.
It could be worse.
I could actually look like this….
Back in December, I got pretty freaked out about a line of lumps along my right arm.
I fretted. I frenzied.
And celebrated big when I got the good news.
Two weeks ago, I had the long-awaited ultrasound and left to the words “I wouldn’t worry if I were you”.
And I didn’t.
Yesterday my oncologist gave me a cheery call. She’s ordered another look at a reactive lymph node.
Lucky me. More practice at trusting my body. More practice at not worrying.
Pretty soon, I’ll be a pro.
Let’s celebrate the power of creative expression — and the freedom to offend — Wednesday, February 23rd 8pm at the cozy, kitchy Raw Sugar Cafe at Censored Out Loud:
Join a motley crew of writers, actors, musicians (including Lisa Poushinsky, Nichole McGill, Jesse Dangerously, Megan Jerome, Jessica Ruano, Mike Essoudry) and nobodies like me as we celebrate Freedom To Read Week by belting out some scandalous — and not so scandalous — censored or challenged works.
Cover: $10 or pay what you can.
Proceeds to PEN Canada.
Hope to see you there.
Hooping, it turns out, is perfect post-breast-cancer-treatment therapy. Almost.
It challenges my co-ordination, balance and spatial awareness.
It entirely occupies my mind.
Its frantic, erratic arm movements sneak my damaged limb into places I thought I’d left behind.
It allows me to flail and fail without drawing the attention of the likewise intensely occupied others.
And gives me ample opportunity to tame my uber frustration reflex.
It’s brand new, so there’s no kicking myself for lost progress.
It’s great exercise.
And it’s my first class with Lucy in 10 years.
But last night I discovered the Almost.
Chemo’d chicks don’t spin.
Or at least they shouldn’t.
It’s easy to forget how disgusting chemo was.
Last night’s hoop-induced nausea was a vivid reminder.
Of how lucky I am to be healthy.
Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
Andrée suggested I post my thoughts on how to have a happy marriage. So here they are:
Not much of a post, though, so I’ll add:
Find the right person.
Be the right person.
And be lucky.
Thank you, Mark, for being the right person.
For finding me.
For our silly and serious projects together.
For the freedom and interest that keeps us working and playing with fabulous friends.
For all we create. And will create.
For our beautiful life.
I love you.
(Happy Valentines Day.)
Three cheers for the six lovely ladies who made it,
the six who didn’t,
and to Betti for making this fabulous weekend happen.
Mr. Social Media hit the national TV screens again tonight.
What that means for your weekend at 46:21.
p.s. You can watch Mark’s Peace, Order and Googleable Government video, here.
I took a timeout from teleworking today to enjoy a walk with Phaedra.
As my ever-burgeoning buttocks bounced happily behind me, I wondered what tweaks to my daily habits might reverse that jiggling trend.
A young man caught up to me on the all-but-deserted pathway, “You’re going to think this is very forward of me, but I’m a personal trainer and…” bla, bla, bla.
The lengthy exchange was pleasant and professional and I returned to my walk feeling triumphant at having successfully deflected all compliments and steered clear of a pitch.
It was only as my mind was drawn back to my jiggling behind that I realized what I’d done.
How often do I nip opportunity in the bud?
Why do I put pride ahead of progress?
And, what’s the scoop on this Marvin guy? I wish I’d got his last name.