Monday, July 28, 2008

He Ain't Heavy (his stuff just is!)

I turned 41 on Friday. (Yay!)

I was happy when I turned 40 last year -- something not many 38-year-olds diagnosed with GBM get to do. So turning 41 was even better!

On top of that, I got everything I wanted this year. The birthday itself, of course. And good MRI's all year (so far--praise God)!

I also got my favorite shoes. Not new ones -- just my old favorites that had been hiding from me. They were gorgeous Italian shoes that were a rare find during a garage sale last year, but a common loss in our house. (I swear my epitaph will read, "She couldn't find her shoes.") It drove me nuts, constantly hunting for those shoes for months. For a while I was cruelly teased by the discovery of one shoe. It had separated from its mate, which seemed hopelessly lost. I even tried replacing them, but I could not find their equal in stores.

Then last week I dreamed that I found the other shoe. I woke up and looked under my bed (something I had done many times before) and FOUND IT!

My husband cleaned the house and treated me to three new outfits to go with my shoes. There is a special occasion coming up (I'll talk about it later) and now I have my Barbie clothes for that.

My kids gave me gifts and made me cards. My son's card was "To my speasl, speasl Mom." (His dad later taught him the right way to spell "special.") And my daughter carefully wrote "MOM" on hers -- the first word she's written on her own.

And my brother Jim drove in to town. He and his family are now officially Texas residents, living about twelve minutes from my house, and close to where Jim is setting up his dermatology practice. We spent my birthday emptying the moving truck, which was actually pretty neat. I considered it opening the big, huge present I'd been hoping for all year. (More family living close to me.) We followed that ceremony with lots of revelry, as the remaining non-Dallas-area members of my family also came up to celebrate Jim's arrival, my birthday, my nephew's birthday, my grandmother's birthday (lucky her -- she's turning 89) and some anniversaries.

On Saturday evening I saw the Osmonds wrap up their 50th anniversary tour, and as they sang "He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother" I thought about how light the moment was for all of us, no matter how heavy the boxes and furniture were. As I thanked my mom and my grandma for being part of the reason for my birthday, I thanked Jim for his life-saving advice nearly three years ago, which is part of the reason I've been lucky enough to have forty-one birthdays.


Temporarily Me said...

There was a link to your blog on a blog that I read and I have to say you have been inspirational to me. Especially as I am begining to embark on my own trips of MRI's and neuro-surgeon appointments. Thank you. Kim

gcashton said...

I just can't even remember how I got here. It's rare for me check out a stranger's blog--but I just read your "Sunday Sermon" and I know I found you for a reason. It was so random that I clicked on that post and then left for the day. Now, hours later, I just sat down and read it and it was a answer to my prayers. I've been feeling very frustrated for the past few days. The emotional roller coaster that I've been on for the past few months is on another downward decent. This past February, my youngest son was hit by a car in my driveway by a good friend and died after emergency surgury a couple hours later. I have come to understand a little of the "refiner's fire" that is mentioned in the scriptures. But with all that I've learned and accepted during my many moments of peace, I still have those dark days of frustration and doubt. I've been feeling very uneasy about some things that aren't working out so well in my life right now--and my attitude hasn't been the best.
I so needed to read your talk, and the many quotes and scriptures you included were perfect reminders to me. I just cried as I read what I felt was meant for my eyes right now. That last quote from Gordon B. Hinckley especially. Thank you for sharing this talk and being my "instrument" to help me with the answers that I've needed.
Gillian Ashton

Jessica said...

I happened upon your post while researching Glioblastoma survival rates after my 36 year old sister in law was diagnosed in June. You are such an inspiration! I am going to send her the link and perhaps she can get even more inspiration from you! She is also a native Texan, as I mentioned 36 years old and mother to 3 of the most gorgeous, incredible kids! She has a 14 year old about to begin his freshman year of high school, a 6 year old starting 1st grade and a beautiful 3 year old daughter just hanging out with mom and daddy at home. She just finished her first course of radiation and chemo and has her 'photo shoot' on the 27th of this month. PLEASE keep her and our family in your prayers. Best wishes on all of your blessings!
Jessica C., Houston, TX