Sunday, November 23, 2008

The C Word

The C word...there, now I've got your attention.

I wish it WAS that C word that we were talking about around here. Unfortunately, it's not. The other C word, as in CANCER, has once again entered into our home and into conversations this week and has prompted me to share with you these tips on how to deal with the fact that your beloved mother is on her way to a first visit to an oncologist:

First, when the call comes in, be in a place where food and beverage are plentiful, like Trader Joe's. Get call, hear news, go directly to wine, bread, and chocolate aisles. Stock up. Beeline to the samples counter. Curse the fact that they do not offer wine samples (under your breath, of course). Loop back to sample counter three times for warm muffins with butter and hot chocolate. Wonder how they knew that you'd need some comforting samples and not the usual stir fried tofu samples. Seethe at the sample lady who gives you dirty looks for repeat visits.

Unload car at home. Consider opening wine. Notice that it's only 11AM and there's the whole work thing later today. Put wine away for later. Get into B's Halloween candy instead.

Pick B up from school. Choke up when he asks to see "Ghee," (your mom). Take B to McDonalds and let him run with a school friend while you cry to a mom friend.

Get it together for work in the evening. Get super pissed off at the prospect of training the three horribly obese ladies who are horribly nasty to you. Wonder for the 513th time about your thin and healthy mother and why SHE has this disease and silently curse the three ladies who you are about to train.

Put the three ladies on notice. Tell them you need more cooperation from them. Refrain from saying, "I'm a trainer, not a magician..get your fat asses on the treadmill and off my skinny Reformers!" Take a deep breath.

Go home and bust the wine out. Remember the risks associated with cancer and alcohol and all that bullshit and put the wine back. Get into Halloween candy instead. Again.

Read B a story. In the middle of the story, fall apart when the story line incorporates a little boy wishing for his grandma to fit into the palm of his hand. Sob in B's bed. Tell B that there is something wrong with your eyes. Get the hell out of there.

Go climb in your own bed and stare at the ceiling. Toss and turn for hours. Then get up at 3am and take a sleeping pill.

Awake at 4:30am in a stupor. Get up and drink 3 cups of coffee.

At 6am, put a (long) movie on for B. Hold your head. Do not cry. Be strong. Get into Halloween candy.

Cheerfully welcome the four ladies who will be taking a yoga class from you in your home studio for the next month of Saturdays. Somehow get through the class. Have no recollection of what you've taught them.

Head to Starbucks. Begin daily Frappuccino ritual.

Pick up B from mom's house. Head to an open house for a client. Take in the dozens of decorated trees, the amazing train, and the super annoying Christmas music. Feel your eyes well up.

Go home and hand B over to your mom for some afternoon playtime. Go to your room, put in ear plugs, turn off the lights. Try to find some peace.

Get up and make a big bowl of broccoli for dinner. Throw some tomatoes in. Wonder how in the world you can clean up your diet any more than it already is. Notice mom chomping on a carrot stick and wonder why diet would matter anyway. Re-consider the wine. Get into Halloween candy instead.

Have a heart-to-heart with your mom. Tell her you'll take care of her no matter what. Assure her that she can live with you, that you'll all be OK. Don't cry. Be strong. She needs that.

Review your own god-awful health insurance plan. Move funds into account to finally pay deductible and get into the doctor. Curse the health care system. Loudly.

Later that night, take off your make-up and study the frown lines between your eyes. Notice that they are, possibly, 100 times worse than they were a week ago. Wonder if Botox would be considered frivolous at a time like this.

Go to bed. Lay awake for hours. Get up, find a different sleep aid. Take it and drift off for 2 hours. Wake up at 4am and consider taking another pill. Decide against it and get out of bed instead. Vow to get a high octane sleeping pill as soon as possible. Brew coffee. Drink 4 cups. Polish off the Halloween candy.

Pass B off to his dad for the week. Experience a weird sense of relief over having him gone (a new emotion for sure!). Know that you can lose it freely now without having to censor your emotions in front of B.

Hit up Starbucks for the daily frap.

Go to church. Nod off during Prayers of the People. Decide that Sunday School is not a good idea for today. Come home, crawl back into bed, and stay there for four hours without books, magazines, movies, music, or phone.

Notice that the new dog is pacing the house. A lot. Feel guilty for not interacting with her. Pack dog up and go to McKinley. Do four laps at her speed (sniff, sniff, squat, pee, sniff, sniff,) and wish that you'd gone to yoga instead.

Come home and research lung cancer on the Internet, telling yourself that you just want to know what to ask the oncologist this week. Freak out.

Make a note to self to stay the fuck off the Internet (may have just lost some readers there) and to replenish Halloween candy immediately.

Start praying. A lot.


ShoppingShelley said...

I will bring over the rest of L's Halloween candy. You definitely need it more than I do.
We will continue to keep Ghee Monster in our prayers.

heartatpreschool said...

I am so, so sorry sweetheart.

Please rely on your friends to help you through this. And keep repeating this mantra: "it's going to be ok, it's going to be ok, it's going to be ok". Because, it IS going to be ok - whatever comes.

Oh, and start listening to a lot more Amy Grant.


hopebearer said...

My heart is broken with yours.
I weep with you.
I'm researching, too.
I want to be there.
Please call me ANYtime - day or night.
I am praying and hoping and believing and waiting...

Remember, you are never really alone. God's love is carrying you, your mom, and our family.
This Amy Grant song, "Carry You", has been part of my healing over this past year of illness:

You are in my heart and I love you deeply!
Aunt Cyn

Kirsten / Mama Ginger Tree said...

Ah! I am so so very sorry. I am sending you lots of hugs.

I agree with my sister, lots of Amy Grant and don't be afraid to ask for help.