Wednesday, September 11, 2019

B + B

I was bitchy and blue, so my village helped me get my pathetic butt up to the lake on Monday night. Max had bought me some groceries earlier in the week. Heather and Mark (well, OK, mostly Heather) packed up my truck on the Surrey end. (Mark chatted with my mom about gutters, so he was being helpful...) πŸ˜ƒAnd Jesse said he'd help me unpack it at the Cultus end.

But as I was leaving Surrey, John sent me a photo text:

So I made a detour through Greendale before hitting the lake.

Val, who'd been up at 6:00 am to get him to the hospital for a test, then spent the morning babysitting her grands, then taught piano all afternoon til 7 pm, managed to make a roast, rice and gravy. (For me.)  😭Rice and gravy is my love language. My granny would make this for me whenever I'd drop in. She always had gravy on hand. And she'd make up a pot of perfect rice every single time.

For dessert?

And then they followed me to the lake, and unpacked my truck for me.

I hope the other August First Ladies have people.

I really have no reason to be all melancholy. I'd had a great weekend:

On Friday, I walked through the Tynehead trails then got some fresh-from-the-garden tomatoes and a zinnia that matched my top.
Not sure what my hands were doing on the drive home, but they were obvs too busy to hold things.

And a few hours later, Jenn took me out for a DQ Smartie Blizzard. Afterwards, whilst on a delicious sugar high, we watched Netflix in my girl-cave. Gerard Butler in a submarine being all leader-y.

Then on Saturday, ANOTHER BLISTERING HOT (then stormy) end-of-summer day, I was picked up for a beautiful drive/walk around Crescent Beach, which started with me dripping in sweat and concluded with me drenched from the rain.

By 9 pm, I was sitting in a dark front room, looking out at the eastern sky, watching the lightening strike somewhere off in the distance and I could feel myself getting enveloped in a blanket of blues. Despite my best efforts to think happy thoughts, I knew I was falling into the abyss.

On Sunday, it was too wet to sit on the deck and have my muffin and grapes, so I sat in front of the flowers I'd received during the weekend and came up with a plan of action.

Have a shower.
I was now 5 days post op and I was allowed to stand under a stream of warm water for a quick shower.

My braid came out. That restrictive tube top came off. I had a look at my cut-up bits. And found where the bright blue Nuclear dye had pooled. Hoping it fades, but was told it could take up to three months. Or never. Some people just end up with blue boobs.

That'll be interesting.
Or gross.
We'll see how I feel about it at Christmas time.

Anyway, the shower was glorious.

Yes, that's a peek at what a front-closing, white, cotton, not underwire, not push-up, not-lacy, squishy bra looks like. Feels like a nursing bra. And about as attractive. But it doesn't leave itchy ripples all over my back and chest. So there's that.

Yes, I realize. My hair needs attention. But I don't know if I'll lose it (chemo?), so for now it's just there.

Then, at 6 I drove out to Abby. My first solo drive.
I went to church.

I needed a God moment.
It happened at the end of the service. (Which had been fine, up til then... But filled with young-ish kids in front of me, beside me, and behind me. All with their moms. All who didn't want to be there. So there were negotiating conversations between all kids and their moms constantly. By the time 45 minutes had passed all the kids had won, and it was quiet (and very empty) as the moms took their respective kids home.)

In my seat, in the middle of the row, surrounded by no-one, the service ended with How Great Thou Art.

And it just did me in.
That song does it regardless of my situation.
But when you're already drowning in emotion, it kicks you in the feelers with steel-toed army boots.

O Lord my God, when I in awesome wonder
Consider all the worlds Thy hands have made
I see the stars, I hear the rolling thunder
Thy power throughout the universe displayed

When through the woods, and forest glades I wander
And hear the birds sing sweetly in the trees
When I look down, from lofty mountain grandeur
And see the brook, and feel the gentle breeze

Then sings my soul, my Saviour God, to Thee
How great Thou art, how great Thou art
Then sings my soul, my Saviour God, to Thee
How great Thou art, how great Thou art!

(I'm looking for a good version on YouTube to link here, but am getting lost in a How Great Thou Art rabbit hole and ended up somewhere else. Which is not HGTA but It is Well...

Seas that are shaken and stirred
Can be calmed and broken for my regard
And through it all, through it all
My eyes are on You
And through it all, through it all
It is well
And this mountain that's in front of me
Will be thrown into the midst of the sea
And through it all, through it all
My eyes are on You
And through it all, through it all
It is well

Erhhm, sorry about the detour.
Back to church...
The final words.
A blessing over us:

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we could ever ask or imagine ... to him be the glory ... throughout all generations, for ever and ever, Amen.

(This is The Verse that I have been holding onto with both hands all summer. Absolutely not a coincidence that this was the verse that was prayed over us on Sunday night. It was for me. Because everything is All About Meeee these days.)

I left church craving Chinese Food and a block of alone time. I knew I had to get myself to the lake. Or I'd end up pissing off everyone who loves me. I'm an introvert. I knew this was true long before that Birkman test pointed it out. Being an introvert DOES NOT MEAN I HATE PEOPLE. It means my batteries are recharged when I spend time alone. And for me personally? That alone time is better in a room filled with windows and natural light. (Not a windowless basement.) This summer has been people-filled. I have been loved on like it was an extreme sport. I know how lucky I am. I do. But I also knew my tank was emptying rapidly. And I needed to do something about it.

So on Monday, I went to the DMV to apply for a replacement driver's license. Mine was good and truly lost (between the back door and the truck... fallen through the slats on the deck?) and then I headed over to Service Canada to apply for Medical Unemployment Insurance. Both activities triggered a (soft rolling) rage in me. OH MY GOODNESS. What is my issue? Chill out woman. Government agencies work at their own pace. My armpit was burning. I needed a nap. I was all snappy. And so not proud of myself.

Grateful for the team that got me out of Surrey in the midst of a torrential, news-worthy downpour.
And so very thankful for the promise I saw as I headed east. I just followed the rainbow:

After my rice and gravy meal (and roast beef and corn on the cob), and after the Wegs unpacked me then left, I opened the sliding door. Sat on the couch. And breathed.

What day is it today?
I've been doing a lot of sleeping. And reading. And walking. And not paying attention to clocks or calendars. I'm also not doing a great job of responding to 'how are you' inquiries. SO sucking at communicating these days. I'm not sure what to say... Yes, I am healing. Yes, I am waiting for results. I have spent the last 4 months having procedures and waiting for results. It doesn't get any easier. But I'm committed to not obsessively worrying, because worrying isn't going to change a damn thing. God's got this and regardless of what my next diagnosis, He is still good.

The other day I spent the afternoon catching Pokemon. I single-handedly took down all the gyms in Cultus and along the Vedder and made them blue. Yes, I did. Nine of them. Took me about three hours. So grateful for all the benches on the Rotary Trail; I run out of steam so quickly. And thankful that the rain held off while I wandered beside the river.

And today I walked along the lake shore from Main Beach to Sunnyside. And back again.
I wonder if profuse sweating is a natural reaction to walking slowly on a not-hot evening a week after surgery. Cuz, MAN. I am a pro at sweating these days.

Also. It's dead quiet in the 'hood.
Summer is over.

Things I'm thankful for:

1. His promises
2. This place
3. Friends and family who extend grace and muscles
4. A body that is healing. Slowly
5. Messages and texts and emails from people who love me
6. Despite the forecast, the rain has been minimal
7. Kids who are recovering. 3/4 of them have had mishaps/owies this past weekend
8. Music and musicians
9. Plans
10. Sleep

Shalom, friends.

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