Wednesday, April 01, 2009

No Foolin'

Ada (2) updates: her favorite color is BLUE, by which she specifically means a sort of aqua color. Let's call it "robin egg blue," for spring. She loves dinosaurs, butterflies, the letter A, and ROCKET SHIPS. (Many thanks to Lisa for the tip to bring out our globe. Ada is all about the "blue water-ocean" on the "circle map.")

Ellie (5) updates: She likes pink, but she likes lots of colors. She is growing out of Dora the Explorer (apparently, this is a very 2-3 year-old obsession) but hasn't figured out what to replace it with. Apparently, this is the part where I'm supposed to introduce Hannah Montana or High School Musical, and that's just simply not going to happen. Anyway, Ellie loves letters and letter sounds, Spanish, everything that rhymes, and, as always, BEADS. I am going to have to keep her far from Mardi Gras when she's a teenager. She lives for beads and spends hours a day playing with them. I encourage her free-form play, but cringe inwardly because I know that toy jewelry like that is chock-full of lead. Fortunately, she was just tested last month and her lead levels are normal.

Both of my beautiful, amazing, little girls are peacefully sleeping, as they should be at 10:00 pm, and I've made good use of my evening by bawling my eyes out.

I keep meaning to mention this, and put some pretty linkage up on this site, but I'm a Wellsphere community blogger. (That link might change; I'm having some little profile issues.) I get periodic emails from the Wellsphere people updating me on community stuff, and I got a sad one today, letting me know that another Wellsphere Health blogger died. Unfortunately, I don't read all the other blogs and as I'm in the Down syndrome community and she was in the cancer community, I didn't know her.

The email linked to this woman's blog, so I clicked over. Shawndra Turner was 32 and had a 3-year-old daughter. She was happily married for less than two years, with a six-month-old baby, when she started having some constipation. Her doctors didn't think it was anything to worry about at first but she's a nurse and pushed for more tests . . . two years later, she died. And she blogged the whole time, from early in her first chemotherapy regimen until just a couple of weeks before her death, with posts interspersed throughout by her husband and other family members. There are also pictures. I read and cried, read and cried. A friend of mine died of a similar cancer a few years ago. She was in her mid-20's and married for only 2 years.

Cancer just . . . scares me to death. Especially the thought of dying and leaving my babies behind.

But I finally quit crying and don't want to start again, so I'll cut that off right there.

And I'll end with a hint of humor. Paul works for a Catholic organization, which has weekly noontime devotional services during Lent. Management is encouraged to lead these sessions, and Paul's turn was today. I told him to stand quietly in front of the group for a while, then say:

"I am Presbyterian and we do things a little differently. Today I'm going to share the devotional with you via liturgical dance. [Long Pause.] April Fool!"

He didn't think they'd think it was funny. Alas.


Barrie said...

Recently I ran into an acquaintance I hadn't seen for several months. Her several months had consisted of being diagnosed with stage 3 cancer. She, also, has been blogging. Like you, I went back and read all the posts. Very tough. Although she is still fighting and that's very good news.

RobMonroe said...

I think that would have been funny - the dance, not the cancer.

I did not know you were on WellSphere. I am, too, but the Kidney Community questions are completely in the just-contact-your-doctor range that I'm uncomfortable even trying to answer. I want to be involved in the larger kidney community, but it's so specialized and not very touchy-feely.

Sarahlynn said...

Barrie, I know this probably wasn't the point, but that was so very well written. Your first two (short) sentences neatly imply the casual nature of passing time for you and then - wham - perspective. I am sorry to hear about your friend.

Rob, I agree! At the end, he said, "My wife wanted me to . . . " and related the joke. One woman spoke up, "And with my own Presbyterian background, I would have ridiculed you!"

I'm still trying to figure out Wellsphere, which is maybe why I haven't blogged about it more.

Kathy G said...

I have a friend who's going through treatment for breast cancer; she uses CaringBridge (different Website, same concept) for her posting. Although she's only about six weeks into her treatment, it's great to get regular updates from her. It's got to be a lot better for her than having to talk to everyone individually.

I'M a Catholic, and I would have found Paul's joke funny. If you can't laugh, something's wrong!

Sarahlynn said...

I agree about laughter!

And I love CaringBridge. Fabulous site.

Sarahlynn said...

Different, though. CaringBridge is about sharing your experiences, Wellsphere is a repository for health-related information and discussions, totally searchable. It's very much an online community ala iVillage.

Cate said...

I've never heard of wellsphere, I'll check it out.

I hate cancer.

Tracey said...

Ack...why did I go to her site while I'm feeling all weepy anyway? Heartbreaking and wonderful, all at the same time.

Sarahlynn said...

Cate, yeah, I'm with you.

Tracey, it's good to hear from you! :)