Tuesday, December 16, 2014
Spark inspirations has this video available:
It's adorable. But what really struck me is the number of people standing around *not* dancing. People who are looking on longingly, clearly wishing they had the nerve to join in.
I remember one time when we were on a cruise ship, watching the Beatles tribute show. The performers said they were going to play a selection of the early, fast songs and invited the audience to get up and dance. Our family jumped up, from Gramma to the kindergartner, and danced, but no one else did. Yet I could see yearning in the faces of some of the other people. So I started making eye contact and inviting them onto the dance floor. Some of them joined us. Others just sat there, looking a bit sad but also very self-conscious.
I've done it myself. Two weekends ago I was getting a tour of an NPR radio station and we were invited to sit down in the booth, give our name, the car we drive, and the song we most like to drive to. I could have sat down and said that I love listening to Rockapella's Zombie Jamboree while driving my Saturn Vue, but I demurred. Why? I think my voice sounds weird. How silly of me to have passed by the opportunity to do something fun because of self-consciousness. That chance won't come again, just like the people on the cruise can't revisit that dance opportunity. Nor can the people who were on that subway platform where a little girl in a pink coat gave them all an opportunity to dance.
Life is too short to sit by the sidelines, worrying that someone will judge you for your actions. Grab on and enjoy.
Tuesday, November 04, 2014
Mom died just before midnight last night. Talked with all my siblings, cried a lot, got a really bad headache from the crying, and then finally fell asleep.
Mom did not want a funeral. But last night I gave her about 12 of them, including one at sea and one in space. I also spent weeks in the hospital with a friend, adopted a baby, redecorated my house completely--including moving it to a seaside location--was witness to a large drug bust (the first time I took my adopted baby out for a walk, which distressed me since my gods I'd just taken on all this responsibility), and helped some kids from out of town locate the nursing home where their grandma was admitted.
Considering that I only slept about three hours, my brain had a very busy night. That was some wild dreaming. The only bad part was that when I woke up the part about Mom being dead was still real.
Monday, November 03, 2014
I spent last week in Montana getting my mother settled into hospice. Today they called to inform me that they expect her to die in the next 36-48 hours.
2014 is completely fired.
Wednesday, September 24, 2014
A year ago, Team Becca participated in the CureSearch Walk. We were a sea of purple, led by a lively and laughing 5-year-old who ran wild on the grass, chasing other children, teasing her uncles, getting tossed in the air and squealing in delight. We were a worried but hopeful group of family and friends, laughing and chatting and enjoying a sunny day. We had raised a record $11,000+ for CureSearch, and no one could have guessed that our giggling 5-year-old was a cancer patient.
The other families who were there probably thought, "Look at them; they're innocent children, playing at cancer. They have no idea what's coming."
And we didn't. Because, despite a completely successful tumor removal, aggressive proton radiation therapy, and chemo, 10 months later we buried Rebecca, who died on her sixth birthday. Her anaplastic astrocytoma reemerged in multiple sites in her brain, inoperable this time, and she did not respond to the experimental drug trial. On the first Sunday of June, her family held her birthday party a week early. She had her face painted and rode in the rocket car shouting, "faster, faster!"
The following Saturday, surrounded by loved ones, Rebecca died. If love had been enough to keep her alive, Rebecca would be thriving now. As it was, we all watched this spunky, spitfire of a child, who was never really ill, and agonized in frustration that we were powerless in the face of this cancer.
It was like watching her stand on a train track with the train rushing toward her, with nothing we could do to stop or even slow it.
For Rebecca, we can but mourn now. The grief remains overwhelming. But in her memory, we can do our best to save other families from suffering such a terrible loss.
Raising money for CureSearch this year has been agonizing. Every time I write about it, I am pretty much wrecked for the rest of the day. But it's worth it, because thanks to you amazing people Team Becca has raised over $8,700 so far. We only have 3 more days to go before the walk, and I think it would be a fitting tribute to raise $10,000 in her memory.
Thank you, all you amazing people who have contributed so far. To see my donations page jump to almost $3,500 is humbling. Your generosity overwhelms me.
Monday, August 25, 2014
This summer has been a real challenge between grief and back injury. I lost my inertia, and for the last few weeks just haven't managed to do anything. So I decided that this week was going to be me getting back on track.
I got up this morning a bit later than I'd intended--but at least I'd slept well! I'd wanted to be out the door to the pool by 9, but it was actually a little after 10. For a moment I thought about letting it go, but instead I jumped up, yanked on my suit, threw a pair of gym shorts and a tank over it, grabbed my pool bag and headed out.
Things I remembered:
2. Swim cap
3. Heartrate monitor
Things I forgot:
1. Flip flops
2. Underwear for when I changed
3. A TOWEL
When I realized this, I thought briefly of running home. But then I realized that if I did, I'd probably never get out of the house again. So I went ahead and swam, then just came home "commando." It was a good swim, and I feel like I started the week right!
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