I remember when summer meant running around the neighborhood barefoot, finding other kids and playing games, running home quickly to grab change when the ice cream truck rang out its tune in the late afternoon… time spent curled up in my room with a book or running through the sprinkler… drinking from the garden hose, selling Kool-aid on the shaded front porch…
Now summer means that there are teenage and young adult men hanging about the house on computers. At least one of those young men must be reminded to shower with soap and shampoo — he is not “fresh as a daisy” nor does he smell like a rose. My house smells like it is lived in by adolescent males. Dirty dishes pile up on the countertops and in the sink while I am at work. (If I think hard enough about it, there were probably dirty dishes piling up in my childhood summer days, but it never really mattered to me because I was a child.)
Last week, I drove across the state to pick H-J from college. I delivered his packing boxes to him on Wednesday and then backtracked across the lake to spend the night at Mrs. G’s house. It had been over a year since we had spent time together and it was a lovely evening (we took our conversation into the wee hours of the morning) and an equally lovely but short morning. My derfwad cup runneth over.
Then I was back in the insane traffic that belongs to Seattle, where my son was ready to load his boxes into the minivan and close out his first year of college. We drove past the rental house where he will live in the fall and I showed him the house where I lived in my late teens. But enough lollygagging — it was time to get back to our own home.
In the past 8 days I’ve driven 600+ miles, grieved the tragic death of a three-year-old, and noted the 4th anniversary of my mother’s death mere days after learning that another member of our extended family has been diagnosed with cancer. I suppose this helps explain my melancholy mood and lack of blogging.
We’ve got two more cross-state trips to make this month and a special visitor coming from Virginia, so I’m confident that there will be some good blog fodder coming soon.
A little more than a week ago, I walked a 5K with this team:
Team Tim (missing 2 runners who were already lined up at the start)
and especially this family:
in honor of that man. He lived well, he loved well, and he is sorely missed.
For anyone who was hoping for a more traditional Memorial Day post, I’ve written about it multiple times here (with pictures here), and two more here and here.
It’s simply that for the past couple of weeks, Tim and his beloved family have been weighing heavily on my heart.
It’s snowing again tonight, wet pelting dots (not flakes) covering the frozen streets. It was slippery driving and I’m grateful for snow tires and front wheel drive.
I was released from the grip of Frankenboot yesterday afternoon, although we’re back to wrapping and taping my toe. I’d stopped doing it because it hurt when I did it — and that couldn’t be good, right? — but it kept swelling up and wasn’t staying straight (trying to hammer toe up again like it’s fellow little toes on that foot). Still, it’s a relief to not have to ZZZZZZIP! ZZZZZZZIP! the straps of velcro (multiply that x5). My heel has finally made its presence known… which is kind of a bummer because I’d gotten used to it not hurting. I’m not sure if it is the fascia (which was clipped) or the spur that hurts. The doctor had asked about it but I’d never really noticed it until after my final appointment — all pain and annoyance being focused on the toe — so I was kind of surprised to feel it when I no longer had the extra padding of Frankenboot. Hopefully ibuprofen will help.
I’ve been hanging out in a hospital room these past couple of days. A friend is dying. It’s been stated before, but I’ll say it again: I hate cancer. A brain tumor started it all, but that isn’t what is killing him; the complications, especially the headaches and seizures and infection, have beaten the fight out of him. He is ready to go, even if we are not ready to say goodbye. Thank God for palliative care! I feel blessed to be a part of it, to be able to participate in a supportive network of church family, friends and neighbors.
So we grieve and share and watch him breathing, living life while awaiting death.