A great day…

I had a great day yesterday!  Thank you to some friends and family.

Started the day off with a healthy breakfast, then I went for a walk (yep, still moving kind of slow but I’m moving to keep the blood flowing to promote healing and prevent widening of my ass.  LOL !  Walking is a win-win activity.  I am glad I am feeling a bit better to get out and get moving a bit.

My walk was to meet up with Rick’s Mom who I call “Jack”.   She lives pretty nearby.  She drove her motorized scooter to the restaurant (she is 85) and I walked to meet her there.  This is our hang out spot where I eat a healthy salad for nutrition but then the good eating habits that I have adopted went all to pot for the day after the salad.  You see, it’s the darn coconut cream pie that Jack has made me become addicted to.  It’s delicious !  Meeting Jack for lunch was the only plan I had made for the day other than some light housework.

Just before I left the house to meet Jack, I received a phone call from my dear friend and fellow cancer fighter, Dana.  She asked if I would like to accompany her to her cottage beach retreat at Rondeau Bay for the afternoon.  I immediately said “darn right I do!”.  I am learning that housework waits for you plus I have been itching to get to the beach this summer.  (I used to spend a lot of time at the beach when I was a kid, one of my favourite past times)  I asked Dana if she would like to join Jack and I for lunch first and she accepted.  I think we may have Dana craving for more pie in her future. 

Off to the beach we went, but not before stopping for an ice cappucino at Timmy’s first.  Mmm, yum…. thanks for the idea Dana, afterall, we don’t have to behave and eat healthy all the time right?  Dana and I never lack topics of conversation.  It’s nice that because we are both in cancer-land together we connect in a way that I cannot put words to really, we just “get it” and say things to each other that maybe we wouldn’t say to others.  I am so happy for Dana as this Friday is her last chemo treatment!  Congratulations!    For those of you that have never been to a cancer clinic, (I’m sure each clinic has their own tradition), but in London where Dana and I go, there is a little ceremony after your last treatment, the nurses gather together and ring a bell to signify a patient’s last treatment.  In the waiting area, other patients and their friends and family will clap along and cheer you as you leave the clinic.  It’s quite touching really.  The first time I experienced this event, it was with a patient I didn’t know.  The man did not seem happy, he seemed to have this look in eyes.  A look that I recognized “of fear”.  I completely understood the look as I have thought of this myself.  What happens after chemo is done?  As difficult as it is to go through 2 major surgeries and chemo treatments within a 6 month period, I am “actively” fighting against cancer and “doing” something about it.  However when chemo is done, what the heck comes next?   This is why I understood that man’s look that day.  The big question of “what the frick comes next?”  I don’t trust the “wait and see” fight method or the “scanxiety” method.  Right now I feel in fight mode, but come November when I am done chemo, things will be different.  I wish I could have an MRI machine at home so I could test myself every day and nip cancer in the ass and say “huh !  caught ya!” and nice and early.

I am sorry I got off topic for a bit, my intention was to share my great day with you.  As you see, cancer is always right there behind every thought of mine and sometimes it sneaks out and takes over, well take a back seat cancer, I am talking about my great day.  It’s not about you today, ughhh! Back off.

Okay, so we arrive at Dana’s cottage, it’s so perfect.  A great place for healing and serenity.

You can see the beach from the back of the cottage, a very short walk to the water.  I wanted to swim and lay on my tummy in the soft sand, shallow water, calm waves, just like some little kids were doing.  However because I am still waiting on my incision to close up, I am not able to get my abdomen wet yet.  Crap.  Oh well, we improvised.  We took Dana’s umbrella and 2 of her plastic muskoka style chairs right out into the water.  You can walk out quite far into the water as it’s shallow and sandy for quite a way.  We sat and people watched and chatted for a couple of hours, my shorts were getting a bit wet, so I headed back to shore and took them off.  Yep, I enjoyed hanging out in a tank top and my undies.  Who cares right?  I no longer am that worried about body image, who cares about scars, stretch marks, dimples, whatever we normally obsess about.  I am not letting anything stop me from enjoying a abeautiful experience, if it means stripping down to my undies, than so be it !  It was a beautiful day out, and as Dana and I were talking, sitting on the chairs in the water, I am thinking to myself, gosh, Dana looks so great!  Since she is still in chemo, she has to be careful of sun exposure.  She has lost all of her hair so she was wearing a brown weaved wide brim beach hat, fashionable sunglasses and she looked like a movie star.  I doubt she realized how great she looked.  I know all to well how it feels to look in the mirror every day and see someone other than yourself.  Well, a different version of yourself. 

I told Dana that I felt like I was 10 years old again.  It had been many years since I had been to this area (even though it’s only 20 minutes away from home).  I forgot how much I loved this place.  We went for a drive along the lakeshore and admired all of the cottages.  We drove through the woodsy area and left the park.  Next stop, we shared an order of french fries and gravy at the fry truck.  After the pie at lunch, I thought who cares, I can eat better tomorrow. 

Dana was close to dropping me off at home and my cell phone rang.  It’s now supper time.  My brother was texting me to see if I was up for company, he could stop in and bring my niece and nephew by and deliver ice cream if I was interested.  To be honest I didn’t even think twice, ice cream?  Yep that’s a healthy supper!  I said sure I would love some company and ice cream, just surprise me with any flavour.  I have to thank my 6 year old niece Caelan for choosing a great ice cream and for the blue tongue. She thought I would enjoy the cotton candy flavour.  Life through a 6 year old’s version is more fun I think.  I don’t know any adults that would choose cotton candy flavour ice cream.  I enjoyed it and next time you go out for an ice cream fix and see that bright pink and blue ice cream staring at you through the glass, you just may think twice about ordering it, at the very least you may think of me.  LOL !  The kids enjoyed a swim in the pool while my brother and I chatted.  It was a great impromtu visit.  Thank you guys!   

The day is not over yet, just before Davey and the kids left, I received a call from my friend Sandy (my  Zumba dance class buddy), she asked if I was up for company.  I said sure, stop in!  We sat pool side and talked away the evening.  Sandy always makes me laugh, she is a doll !  We met about 20 years ago when we both worked at United Parcel Service and have been friends since. 

It was about 9:00 pm now and Rick just arrived home from a long day at work.  There it is again, that internal feeling of extreme guilt knowing that he was working his ass off while I am having a great day.  He never complains or makes me feel bad, that is all my doing.  When I called him in the morning to tell him I was headed to the beach with Dana, he said, stay as long as you like because I will be working late anyway.  Thank you Rick, but how do I “really” thank you?

Since the day was shot for my healthy eating strategy I had a bowl of cereal for a very late supper at 10 pm followed by a chocolaty, gooey, surgary home-made treat that Sandy brought to us.    As I lay in bed reviewing my great day in my head, I am thinking, hmmm…. the pains were there but they didn’t dominate the day.  Yippeeee !   Good night everyone and thank you for the wonderful day.  I pray for health and happiness for each one of you.untitled