It's a creekmore world

Week #15: The Egg-Man and Wormholes: Are we loosing our minds?

Today Trish is craving hard boiled eggs. Her chemo-day comfort food changes each time.

Miraculously, the little convenience store at the medical center has them at the coffee counter. I pick up a few with tiny packets of salt and pay for them at the cash register.

Among the trinkets for sale are Silly-Bandz, in all shapes and sizes. They remind me of our girls, who are having a great time at Grandma and Grandpa’s – away from cancer for a few weeks.

Cancer and Kids

ZOMG Silly Bandz!
I don’t know what the effect of seeing Trish go through chemotherapy is for a pair of 7 and 10 year old girls. Kids don’t articulate feelings easily.

On the outside our girls have dealt with it pretty well, but I’m glad they don’t have to see her go through another chemo cycle.

Friends and family have done a lot to help with care packages and little gifts for them. (Thank you everyone that sent them stuff, it meant a lot to us and them. Check out this giant bunch of Silly Bandz they got from Duffy and Dan!!)

New kinds of discomfort

The 5th treatment, is for me anyway, the worst so far.  We don’t have the hope and relief that will come with the final treatment, but we’re so deep into the process that the cumulative effects (on both of us) are painful.

The good news is Trish is not terribly nauseous and her mouth discomfort is much more tolerable. We’ve figured out how to deal with those symptoms pretty well.  But the bad news is the effects on her system and brain are becoming much more pronounced.

God I miss them.  I still have Monty though.
She is incredibly bored and she can’t do anything for 6 days except watch bad, bad TV.   Action movies make her sick, and anything with a plot is too complicated to follow.

She watches a lot of ‘America’s got Talent’.  That makes her frustrated and a little grumpy. And she sleeps a lot, which is as good a time-waster as anything.

Without our girls, I feel pretty alone. Our dog, Monty, helps keep me company.  I miss my wife.  I wonder if I’m loosing my mind too.

101 Surprises #66-70

Amazing necklace from Beadnicity
The surprises are the story this week. Trish got fabulous, thoughtful gifts from friends and family. It really shows the love people have for her, and me.  We thank you from the deepest part of our heart.

66) A Beautiful Necklace: Candace Stribling is a friend that makes amazing jewelry. She gave Trish this beautiful azure necklace and wrote “this will look great on her, she has a beautiful neckline.”

Totally true, Trish has a great long neck to display a bold necklace like this one.

Candy is growing her business, and you can see more of her stuff at her website (beadnicity.com) or email her at beadnicity@hotmail.com.

67) A bathroom poster of Morgan Freeman: Trish is a huge fan of Morgan Freeman, most beloved by her for his role in The Sawshank Redemption, which she has seen a dozen times.

This summer, he was the featured narrator of a Discovery Channel show called ‘Through the Wormhole”.

Some genius, who I hope was being funny, had the idea to broadcast Morgan’s promo for the show in the Men’s and Woman’s bathroom.

So employees would sit there, on the pot, and from the heavens comes Morgan Freeman’s god-like voice telling them to join him “Through the Wormhole.”

Naturally, this poster is from Betty and Kasey, and is going in our bathroom.

68) The Friday Facebook Flash mob: Tara Dixon Bunch emailed me an idea on Tuesday night, after the chemo treatment. She was lying awake in bed and the thought came to her that we could ‘take-over’ Trish’s facebook by flooding it with notes and updates.

Post counts during the day.  These are NOT cumulative.  They went back to zero each time she read through a bunch.  She got hundreds of posts.

Of course, we could only do this as a surprise, and Trish reads her facebook everyday. So I had to be sneaky to pull this off.  Fortunately, I can get into her facebook account because occasionally she needs me to post something or retrieve some information.

So I sent an email to her 300 friends from her facebook email. (I had to make 18 groups first because facebook won’t let you email more than 20 at a time.)

The opening message was “DON’T REPLY TO THIS MAIL OR YOU WILL SPOIL THE SURPRISE.” Amazingly, no one did. In a day an age where we hit ‘reply all’ instinctively, I was very impressed with all of your restraint.

You can't really tell, but her eyes are all watery from crying.
My email asked everyone to post a message of support to Trish Friday morning on her page, and in their status. That way, Trish’s entire facebook would be overtaken by messages.

And it worked brilliantly. She got over 200 posts on her page and as many status updates from friends, including the opening limerick posted just after midnight on Friday morning by our dear friend, Billy, who is also suffering from cancer.

A Take-over limerick for Tink

Said the girl who loved dance and trapeze
When she discovered Big C in her D’s
I will poison the lout
Then cut it right out
Till I swing again on the breeze….

Trish was in tears the whole day, something she doesn’t do often or easily. Thanks everyone that participated, it was an amazing gift.

69) A painting from an old friend. Trish has told me a lot of stories about Jessica and Lori, her two best friends in High School. They got in trouble here, had fun there, the usual stuff.

Jessica is an accomplished painter, and has her stuff shown all over the Bay Area including SF MOMA. We’ve loved her art for a long time.

So with great joy, Trish opened up an original painting by Jessica, called, appropriately for the curcumstance “Outburst”, at the top of the page.   The painting’s dual symbolism of Trish’s ‘Fuck You Cancer” approach and the expulsion of cancer from the breast will forever connect us to this experience in a way only art can.

This is going in a very prominent place in our home, where we will see it everyday. Thanks Jessica. Your art filled an old friend with joy and relief.

(Yes, I know, #69 should have been more explicitly sexah, but it the list just didn’t come together like that.  Get it, COME TOGETHER?  AH HA HA.  Gawd, I’m so funneh. I crack myself up.)

We can see their faces through the hair!  Lily's Betty Paige is adorable.
70) Three weeks without kids: Although this is hardly a surprise, and had to be planned from the beginning, this may be the greatest gift of the whole bunch. We miss our girls a lot, but it has been so much easier to take care of things without them.

They are used to spending summers away. This helps the with their continuity and comfort. We’ve spent at least a month travelling each of the past three years.

They get time with both of my families in New York, including a few days in the Berekshires, where I spent a lot of time as a kid. I’m so glad they get to go there.

Not least, my job is heating up in August, as will Trish’s medical appointments as we prepare for surgery. So I really can use the extra time.

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