I’m still here.
Thank you all for your continued prayers, visits, mail (holy crap do we get a lot of mail, which is great), care packages, and Guestbook posts. We read them all and accept all of our mail. Keep it up. It really helps Meaghan (and by extension me) to know so many people are thinking of her and care for her. And it has led to a burgeoning relationship with our UPS delivery guy – a friendly sort who is earning a non-denominational winter holiday gift from us.
I haven’t posted for a long time – mostly because of the amount I was working in September and October. But as you all know, Meaghan has done such a wonderful job of baring her soul and keeping you all informed that you didn’t need to hear from me. Her honest blog posts really do capture what it’s like for her to fight each day and give you all a bit of insight to her mind and her soul. While I kind of liked the fact that I had a private audience to that until August, I’m glad she is sharing with all of you. She continues to impress and amaze me with her strength.
I have obviously missed a lot of time on the blog so its hard to come up with many succinct thoughts about the journey. And that’s certainly what it is – a journey and a marathon, not a sprint. I think it’s important to not get too high or too low (I know, convenient thing for me to say) since this will certainly be a process. For example, in one week we met with the nurse practitioner who had a hard time feeling Meaghan’s tumor (because it was so small) and was impressed with her tolerance of the treatment. And then not two days later I was using an electric clipper to shave Meaghan’s head. Understatement of the year: not a fun moment. But we got through it – Meaghan by focusing on getting a picture of herself with a mohawk, me by doing my best impression of a barber asking questions of his client. My hereditary tremor and general distaste for what I was doing led to a mediocre effort that masked the effort I put forth. If this whole tax thing doesn’t work out, barber college is not in my future. I could be screwed.
Meanwhile, life goes on. Unfortunately we lost my uncle earlier this month and one of my dad’s cousins also unexpectedly passed away that same week. As my dad said, maybe it will just be easier to not answer the phone for awhile. Being far away makes it difficult already, but then having to stay close to home and not being able to get back for services and to pay back some of the support we have been getting was very tough. Fortunately we have been witness to so many great examples of ways to help from afar, so we did our best with that.
Another take away I have from the last month or so has been all of the help we have been getting. We were fortunate to have Meaghan’s brother Lucas for short stop and her mom Kathy and in town for about 10 days when I was very busy with work. That allowed me to at least feel a little bit better about getting home form work late and then also working on the weekends. I definitely felt the pull to be home and that definitely made managing like difficult. But we are getting through it and my work schedule isn’t as hectic for the next month or so. My parents also made the trip out to help us and see our house for the first time. It was great to have them here and treat them to the same treatment all of our guests have gotten over the last few months – no sightseeing and lots of chores. Ah, vacation. I know they would have come out for that no matter what, but it still means a lot to us. And now Meaghan’s parents are back in town – this time for a pre-planned visit. We are truly blessed to have such great families. Even though there are 2,000 miles away, they never really are.
We have also had lots of visits from great friends, some close and some who used to be close and are now not as close as we would like. You all know who you are – thank you.
I want to give a special shout out to Meaghan’s co-workers, grantees, collaborators, and work friends. The level of support and comfort you have given Meaghan is truly outstanding and has definitely helped lessen the burden on the work side of her life. Her team at GBMF hasn’t been getting enough appreciation and thanks from me for their flexibility and understanding. Her grantees and other work associates have been amazing as well. I was fortunate to briefly meet many of them recently at a local retreat that Meaghan attended. What a great group of people doing great work and surrounding Meaghan with a lot of love and support. So thank you to all of you, people of ocean philanthropy.
As I write this, our house is being surrounded by sound. Helicopters are flying overheard, car horns are blaring, fireworks are everywhere. You might be thinking, “are the cops arresting him because anyone who looks like a pale version of Peyton Manning and Phil Mickelson’s lovechild needs to be locked up?” The answer in this case is no, not being arrested – the Giants just won the World Series. Exciting for the city for the 2nd time in 3 years. Someday Cleveland, someday. Oh, and Go Irish.
Thank you to all of you again. I will attempt to be better at adding my two cents here from time to time. Until then, enjoy the week and your families.