I awaken later than I think I will after all the sleep I had yesterday. I am surprised at how much I am needing lately. At least ten hours a day. I lay in bed and think, something I never used to do, but really enjoy lately. Steve wakes and we talk about the day, he is going to go represent the Humanists of RI at Pride Day, downtown.
Today, I really am going to go to Whole Foods. As Kaileigh and I pull out of my street, I see people walking to the Farmer’s Market and out strolling along Hope St. I realize I haven’t seen this Saturday morning parade in weeks. The sun is shining and it feels good to be out in the world.
We poke along in the market, enjoying the the slowness and exploring food possibilities. We get home and put the groceries away, and are discussing going out again. The door opens and my friend Anna comes in. I had made a plan with her earlier in the week for her to stop by, and even though I have written it on my whiteboard calendar, I have forgotten. She has arrived just in time!
Anna is the mother of two of the children I have been taking care of for the last five years. I love her and her family, and am so glad she has stopped in. She had been away while I was in the hospital, and I have missed seeing her at pickup time this week. I catch her up on what has been going on, and where I am at right now. She asks me if I have cancer, because up until this point, I have been referring to things the way they were described to me: a malignant mass, spots on my liver. I didn’t want to alarm people with the word cancer, it holds many different emotions for people. I tell her yes, in fact, I do have cancer. I assure her that everything is going to be okay though. She is concerned, but relieved by my attitude.
She tells me that when she was a young girl, her mother had colon cancer too. I have met Anna’s mother, and she is doing fine. I am reassured by her story.
After Anna leaves, we head off to Bed Bath and Beyond. I have been having terrible night sweats and the flannel sheets on my bed get so wet and take too long to dry. I would like some cotton percale sheets that will be cooler and dry faster. Right away, we walk into a sale. 350 long egyptian percale, half off. We check the rest of the sheets, comparing softness and weight, but I know I have found my price. We find all the pieces in the sizes and blue color I want, this was meant to be.
I think I still have the energy to tackle Target at this point. I want to find a tube top to cover my ostomy bag, something I have read about that will help smooth out bumps. We don’t find a tube top, but do find a pregnancy Be-Band. It is the same sort of thing, but probably twice the price. I decide to get it anyway. I am here, it is here, and I am getting tired.
We pick up essentials that I need for home and daycare, and by the time we hit the register, I am very hungry and tired. I ask if we can stop by Del’s once again, I have found it to be a quick hunger relief. The Del’s is cold, and so am I, but sitting in the car in the warm sun is heavenly.
When I get home, I go take a nap. One and a half hours. As soon as I wake up, I start texting with my daughter Ayla’s friend, Chauncey, about tattoos. He tells me where he gets his, at Blackstone Tattoo in Pawtucket. It turns out that I have met the artist, Derek, at the playground. He was there one day with his son while I was there with my crew. We make arrangements to go visit him at the tattoo shop where he works, as soon as Ayla gets out of work.
I bring the painting that Kaileigh has made and tell Derek which one I would like for my tattoo. It is the paisley dotted one, the one that looks aboriginal. He likes it. I tell him that I am going to start chemo in a little over a week, he doesn’t think it should be a problem. He assures me it should be pretty well healed by then. I have a feeling that if I were to mention this idea to any medical person, they would advise against it, so I don’t. I am hoping he can do it over the weekend, but he is booked. We make plans to do the tattoo on Wednesday at five thirty. He will be doing Ayla’s too.
As we leave the shop he tells me not to be surprised if I decide to add details or change my mind completely by Wednesday. “Happens all the time,” he says. On the way home I contemplate adding a sun.
I am tired, and though it is warm outside, I am chilly. The fans are on in my house and there is a lot of moving air. I go upstairs and crawl into my bed to get warm while Kaileigh and Ayla make dinner. Chicken sausage and corn on the cob. Corn is not on the list of foods I should be eating right now, but it looked so good in the market. I am not disappointed.
Steve stops in to check on me before going to march in the Pride parade this evening. He has had a long day that will now stretch on into the night. I know I will be going to bed soon, and give him a kiss goodnight.