January 1, 2016
Here it is, the first day of 2016. There was a time, not too long ago, when I thought I would never see this day. But here I am. Dictating a blog post to Rosalee.
What do I have to look forward to on the first day of 2016? My brother Dannie and my sister-in-law Barb are bringing over some of their traditional pork and sauerkraut for New Year's Day. One thing I can still do competently and enthusiastically is eat; contrary to experiences of many people in chemotherapy, I have maintained a healthy appetite and enjoy, no, love eating. And even better, I haven't gained weight as a result of all that eating; in fact I've lost over 20 pounds in the last six months. Besides eating, I am still pretty good at sleeping. I have no trouble falling asleep, sleeping eight or more hours, and feeling refreshed. That pretty much covers my basic animal needs, except for voiding, which is going better thanks to Sennecott.
All of this brings me joy, but it pales in comparison to looking forward to the arrival tomorrow of Obed, Wally, Chris and Emily. I am apprehensive about being able to get down on the floor when the grandkids arrive, rolling around on the floor and laughing and tickling - and getting back on my feet. But at this stage of my life I will take what I can get. And I think what I can get are hugs and childish voices saying, "Grandma, Grandpa!"
2016 will not end when the kids go back to New Jersey. I plan to work on finding joy where I can, even without them. Part of the joy has been and will continue to be re-establishing deeper and better communication with Rosalee , my children, my siblings, and my friends. some of them, maybe not as many as I would like to think, get tired of my saying I don't deserve all of this love and support. I am trying to realize that deserving has nothing to do with anything good or bad. I did nothing to deserve deadly brain cancer; I did nothing to deserve all the wonders of my life. And I'm glad I'm not going to be punished for not being more perfect.
I started this final journey promising to be truthful and not to look at any situation either with rose-colored or dark-colored glasses. I see no reason to change that approach now. It is too early to tell whether any of the treatments - radiation, chemotherapy, electrical - are improving my situation. Whatever it is, whether I'm around to write a blog a year from now, I want to say, "I am not afraid." Our job as humans is to take life as it comes and not complain or view it in terms of punishment or reward, but just live each moment as it comes.
Happy New Year.