You guys, the other day I was taking care of business (business = my kids) with daytime tv on in the background, and a commercial came on that caught my ear. You know the kind. If you’re currently experiencing restless legs, blurred vision, the appetite of a high school football player, vampire fangs, and an uncontrollable urge to twerk — IDK — ask your doctor for THIS medicine so we can make a buttload of money. Except I was like YESSS! to all symptoms. I looked up to see who was reading my mind, and it was a very nice looking grey haired woman speaking. For a menopause medication. Yeah, so that’s where my life is right now.
I must also note, the idea of a hot flash is kind of hilarious, but hot flashes are NO joke. I have always been the cold type, but I am freezing my family out right now. I should probably put hats and mittens on Alice while I lounge around bald and in my underwear. Summertime is not the ideal time to go through this. Wigs, sharing a bed with anyone, and babies with fevers who want to lay on me all Labor Day long are not my favorite things right now.
In keeping it real news, after I told you guys about needing radiation a couple of weeks ago, I let myself go to a bad place. I stayed there for about a week, and I couldn’t stop thinking about the word “aggressive.” It was a terrible place to be, and I couldn’t stop my mind from going down a lot of roads that left me partially paralyzed and on the brink of depression. I felt really guilty and knew that I needed to pull myself out of it. Then I talked to my dad who put some things into perspective for me. He simply said, “Heather, it’s okay to feel that way, even healthy. You can visit. Just don’t unpack and live there.” As much as I don’t like that place, I can visit; It’s probably necessary. I just won’t unpack and live there. Thanks, dad.
I figured a week is as long a vacation as anyone takes, and this was one of the worst places I had ever visited so I got back to my life. It has been refreshing and fun. So that’s what I’m going to focus on this time. My life.
Like, I have had dinner with friends twice and Josh once (ALONE! Holla! <— Wait, people don’t say that anymore, do they? My cool speak has a different definition now and includes phrases like “You get what you get and you don’t throw a fit.” Maybe someone can debrief me on some hip phrases. You know, like Darryl did for Michael on The Office??)
Penny started preschool, but is definitely too cool for me.
The girls and I have been able to make it the last two story times at the library, and Uncle Paul even accompanied us to one. I’m pretty sure he was traumatized. Kids were everywhere — throwing fits, refusing to sit on “the rug,” crying, trying to escape, hitting each other. Per ushe. And there were two types of moms. The dejected mom and the mom who is so excited to see other adults that she talks the whole time. I am definitely among them. I get it. (Upon relaying my brother’s surprise that we talked during story time to another mom, she was all, “We’ll talk through a eulogy. And a presidential address.” We get hard up for adult convo, yo.)
After the library, Uncle Paul did help plan and photograph an important moment in Penny’s life. Her wedding to “Old Teddy.” This day has been a long time coming.
We also celebrated Alice’s 1st and Penny’s 4th birthdays last weekend with a princess party! Sidebar: If you have styrofoam swords and wands as party favors, maybe give them out at the end of the party if you don’t want an absolute brawl to break out. The kids LOVED them (I’m pretty sure it made the party.), but I was sure that my mother-in-law was going to kill me since the party was at her house. She did not. Nary a word. Sometimes this cancer thing works to my advantage.
Also, I almost had a pinterest fail to show you guys. Midway through this castle cake, it looked like a lost cause. For serious. I literally said, “Well, we can serve this alongside a picture of what it was supposed to look like so people can get a good laugh.” But Josh took over and saved. the. day. It’s not perfect, but we all loved it. I did not think the end result was possible. Josh has mad piping skills. I have mad put some princesses on the cake to hide some stuff skills.
After the party, I went to a benefit for an old friend of mine’s son, Sam. A few weeks before me, he was diagnosed with cancer AT FIVE YEARS OLD. I just don’t even know how that happens, and it seems so unfair. But this little dude is now done with his treatment, and I had the sweetest little conversation with him that, really, I can’t stop thinking about.
His mom brought him over because he noticed my pink hair. She said they had a conversation about it, and he wanted to ask me a question.
In the sweetest little voice that melted my mom heart, “Do you have cancer too?”
“I do. Yes.”
“Do you have a port too?”
“Yeah. Like you.” And I pulled my shirt back to show him.
He smiled and showed me his port too. All the cool kids have ports, you know. (What’s up, Garrett!)
That was it. But, man.
This world is wonderful and scary and sad and confusing and full of joy. And what I’ve learned the most from this experience is that life is meant for connecting with other people. So that’s what I’m working on right now. Not unpacking my bags in some weird, worried place in my mind and just getting out there and living and connecting with people. Also, keeping cool. And babying my eyelashes.