Saturday, June 28, 2008

Thoughts on Friendship

Today I am getting ready to leave to attend the wedding of my best friend's daughter. I remember the day the lovely Elizabeth was born. Her Mom had a son and was so hoping for a daughter. She called me the minute she was born, from the delivery room! She was overjoyed. She had just moved into her first house after having had a condo when her son was born. I was there to help her move, she was eight months pregnant and wasn't able to do much more than supervise. We met when we were ten years old and we are now fiftyish. Forty years of friendship. We have had a falling out along the way. I was very hurt over a letter she sent me when angry. She asked me to forgive her before the letter arrived but it took me years to get over what was said. Looking back it wasn't so bad. It's just that the letter arrived shortly before my son was diagnosed with leukemia. She called him in the hospital and offered to come be there with us. I wasn't ready at that time. When I was ready and called her she was there within hours. We have been through so very much together. I have been at two of her weddings and she two for me. We have been through pregnancies, births, moves and deaths of loved ones. We are going through menopause together after years of getting our periods on the same day! Her friendship is a sheltering tree. People say we are so much alike.She is tall and thin and I am short and heavy. We share a rich history. Noone gets me like she does. The private jokes go back for decades. Damn, I am so lucky and today I get to go and share in one of her special days again.
What really put me over the top was when she called last week and we were talking. Her daughter was discussing the seating arrangements and she asked where I would be sitting. Her daughter responded that I would be sitting with the family because I am the same as their biological family. I was so touched. Her daughter has decided to use the name Elle instead of her full name. That makes our connection even stronger. Today is a special day for a young lady who is family to me and I feel honored to be sharing it with her other family. Today once again I will be sharing the life of my friend who has become my sister of the heart. It feels so good.
Thank y0u Deb for being a part of my life. I am hoping there are many more memories yet to be made. Love you girlfriend.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Just a brief update

The past few weeks have been so hectic. At work they keep changing things and that is stressful. You are always monitored for quality and when things keep changing that can be difficult. Still, I am so grateful to have a job with good benefits and a steady paycheck, especially in this economy.

This past weekend we learned my father, who was vacationing at his home in upstate New York had a medical crisis. He had three seizures (in which he bit his tongue badly) and was not coherent for over a day afterwards. They rushed him to the local hospital where he was put in ICU. That was fortunate since his heart actually stopped during his first hour there. My one brother lives locally with his wife and grown daughter and my youngest brother happened to be there with them along with his wife. They told me not to come and I kept in touch constantly on the phone. Early Monday morning I spoke with my mother who said they had found something on his lung. Since the tumor removed from his liver was cancer the doctor felt this was another tumor related to that one. On Monday I walked into work and told my boss what was happening. He immediately told me to go be with my father and not to worry about leaving. I immediately called Rob and he left his job and we drove the 268 miles to the hospital. When we arrived he was still in ICU but seemed in much better shape than I had anticipated. By the following day he had improved so much that he was taken out of ICU and put in the regular section of the hospital. The spot on his lung turned out to be pneumonia. His potassium was completely gone as a result of ten days of chronic diarrhea caused by a medicine a doctor had put him on for Krohn's disease. He also had a bad infection. Antibiotics, many bags of IV potassium and stopping the medicine worked wonders.

While up there we got to see Seneca Lake and my older brother's home for the first time. I was sorry I didn't have my camera with me. We drove home late Tuesday evening and I was back at work on Wednesday. My father continues to improve. What an amazing recovery.

This weekend we are off to Philadelphia to take part in my best friend's daughters wedding. I am excited. The downside of going away is always leaving the pets. Our dog is very shy and doesn't like other people coming here and us leaving. While we were in New York my sister-in-law took care of him. We have a neighbor who will be taking care of him over the weekend for us. I love this dog but it makes it so difficult for us to go away and sometimes I envy people who have the freedom of just packing a bag and going. I am going to try to find a kennel for him.

Well time to get ready for work. I am leaving early today so I can get my nails done for the wedding. They look so bad. I also need to pack and frankly I am tired and want to make sure I go there rested. Hotel service, oh yes! I am overdue for a bit of pampering.

Hope your weekend is a good one!

Sunday, June 01, 2008

It's a Balancing Act

I really enjoyed my four day long weekend last week...trouble is I tried to fit way too much in.
My m i l's birthday is today. Last Sunday we went shopping and I bought her a digital keychain that holds 60 photos. When we got home my husband and I went through dozens of pics and chose the ones to put onto it. We discovered the USB cable was missing from the box. No problem because we had one from a GPS that would work. Thing is, I realized that in order to charge the battery she would need the one that was supposed to be in the box. Monday we had to see my parents and were so tired from all the yardwork and house chores that we then fell asleep. When we woke up I said that I would go on Tuesday to get the missing cable. I have Tuesdays off now. It's a trade off for working four ten hour days. I went on Tuesday and got the missing cable but problem being, I got the box in the mail too late and she didn't have it for today. I feel guilty about that. We called and apologized twice but I really do feel badly, especially with this being her first birthday without her daughter (and the anniversary of her daughter's death is a week from today.) Tomorrow she will receive a nice box filled with gifts and a check. I hope it will give her a nice lift. It's really hard to remember everyone in a timely fashion. When I wasn't working full time it was a lot easier.

I am preparing for my best friend's daughter's wedding the end of the month. I had to find a nice dress, have the dress altered, upon trying on the dress, realized it need further alterations, and still don't know what shoes I will be wearing! I was fortunate to find a dress that I really like.
It is black but with a matte stripe also black running through the fabric. It is piped in a beautiful chartreuse satin piping and I found a Pashmina the same color to wear over it since it has thin staps and is a very summery dress. Perfect for dancing and having a grand time. I am looking forward to a get away. Haven't spent a night away from home since last year when we were in my mother-in-law's and it was a rough week then. We need a night of happiness even if it is costing us a lot with the gas and tolls and hotel fees and the clothes and the gift. It will be a joyous event with people who are like a second family to me.

My father is not doing too well. He is depressed. He went to his house at the foot of the mountains in upstate New York. He walked in the house and fell on his face receiving a few injuries. They only have cell phones they use when there and they turned off the ringer and can't figure out how to turn it back on. My father forgot HIS cell phone (all the people up there had his no. not my mother's) along with his briefcase with all his house papers in it. My mother didn't fare much better forgetting her suitcase and realizing she only had the clothes on her back. This is over five hours away from their home here. They are planning to return on Wednesday and he has a full calendar of medical visits then. It has been strange not to speak to them except for twice when they called this week. Week before last I called one afternoon and my father began to say things he had never said my entire life such as that he loved me and appreciated all the help I had given to my parents. This almost scared me. He says that he belongs in a nursing home. He begs my mother to sell their houses and move into something that won't require upkeep and be so costly. She clings to that house even though she admits it's too much for her to care for. It's almost as though that house represents life to her.

Work is a good distraction for me from these problems. Work creates stress in a different way but I love the company that I work for. There are many coworkers I am fond of. Each day new things come into play that keep me on my toes. Tomorrow there will be changes again and my boss who has been out for two weeks for the birth of a child will be returning. I look forward to that.

This past weekend I emptied out all my pantry (and the overflow pantry in the garage.) I checked dates on all the jars and cans and boxes. I threw out a huge bag of expired items.
I have been so busy with working that I haven't cooked much and I wanted to make sure there was nothing old that I might grab in a hurry. This was symbolic for me. I have regained control of my life. The things that have expired are gone and what is left is neatly arranged. I am comfortable in my marriage, my home, my job and even my neighborhood. When I think back to all that has happened in the last decade it's a lot. I am a stronger, more patient person than I was back then. It's a good feeling and I like where I am. It was worth the struggles that it took to get here.