Thank you 3

Thanks to the large, but unspecified, group of friends who pool money to send us a bagels and lox care package from Russ and Daughters, perhaps THE premier smoked fish/pickle/bagel emporium in New York City. Thanks to Sarah, who orchestrates this delicious gesture.

Thanks to Jay and Catherine, who send a hilarious book, Cancer Vixen, a graphic memoir by a New Yorker cartoonist who is a breast cancer survivor. Thanks, also, for the more serious book about being a parent with cancer, and helping kids to cope.

Thanks to Sarah, Elizabeth and Simon for the lovely little print. We’re having it framed and it will make us smile when things get icky in the coming months.

Thanks to Clair, who continues to pull us kicking and screaming through the renovation process. Who knew that you can now pick up giant paint chips to hang on the wall rather than bother with little sample cans and brushes and paint thinner and all that mess?

Thanks to Mikiko and Marshall and to Drs. Rugo and Hwang for helping me to find a primary care physician, a dentist and a gynecologist. I am surrounded by doctors these days, but not the day-to-day sort of doctors.

Thanks to my roofing contractor brother Hal who fixes a hole in the deck over the floor where we hope to be living in a couple weeks. Thanks especially for finishing just before the rains begin in earnest this weekend. It’s not true that it never rains in California, only that it doesn’t rain between April-May and October-November.

Thanks also to Hal, and to his wife Lili, for taking daughter Erin for a sleepover, movie, junk-food marathon and Boo-the-Rottweiler worship session. She needed the break. We needed the break.

Thanks to Laurie, another member of Bay Area Young Survivors, who bumps into me and Pete in the hall after my Chemo Teach appointment. Thanks, Laurie, for being so up and looking so great in your Go Giants! gear with only one chemo infusion to go. You give me courage. But even more important, you give my husband Pete courage. Pete’s mental image of chemo is his mother, 30 years ago, when things were different.

And this just in: Thanks to Brooklyn pal Leslie who sent us a check to help me kick the Puritan, clean-o-holic nonsense out of my head so that we can hire maid while I’m too tired to endlessly vacuum pet hair and indulge in alphabetizing spices and preparing overly elaborate dinner parties. And thanks also to more Brooklyn pals Sarah and Laura, Elizabeth, Ruth Ann and Kevin, Theresa, Sarah and Elizabeth for sending MORE funds so that we can continue to afford a chemo maid. We might get used to that again. Haven’t had a housekeeper since we left Monterey 10 years ago. Thanks also for the Brooklyn sugarless gum. Erin snarfed it down in about five minutes.

Thanks, thanks, thanks, thanks, guys.


About leftbreast

I have had breast cancer. I was diagnosed at 47, and am now 49. I have finished "active treatment," two surgeries, chemo, radiation, monoclonal antibodies. These days, I only take a drug to suppress my uptake of estrogen, since my tumor was highly reactive to that hormone. I have been married to my husband Pete for 21 years. I have a stepdaughter, Maureen, 30, and a daughter, Erin, 10. I've been a freelance magazine journalist for 20-plus years, covering everything from Chinese foreign policy to Catholic nuns to endangered species. I have had a great life. I have lived in Asia and all over the United States. I have spent nights with tree-sitters in Oregon and with astronomers at the Mauna Kea observatory in Hawaii. I've been to a cocktail party on the poopdeck of a British destroyer docked in Shanghai. I've taken the bus to Tibet, and tramped through the cloud forests of Panama with biologists. A magazine sent me on a raft trip down the Colorado through the Grand Canyon; another sent me to cooking school for a week. I have spent time with celebrities, presidents and heroin dealers. I love my work. I have a loving, supportive family and more friends than I probably deserve. I have had the space and time to camp, ski, cycle, garden, cook and spoil my pets (an Australian shepherd, a German shepherd and a tabby cat). If it all ended tomorrow, I would have to say that it has been a really, really good ride. When I was in thick of treatment, I was simply fighting for more time. Now, I'm trying to connect the experience of cancer with the rest of my life, with the time that's been won. I hope the cancer never comes back, but if it does, I'll be ready. That's what this blog is about.
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1 Response to Thank you 3

  1. Catherine says:

    And sending a big hug to go with those books. Dreamed about you the other night–we met up and were delighted to see each other and hugged–yours was a right-sided hug so I knew it was real. 🙂 xo

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