Monthly Archives: September 2011


So, yesterday I turned 39.  A week ago or so Luke and I celebrated 14 years of marriage.

We are terrible in the household about celebrating anything that isn’t Thanksgiving, Christmas, or Easter.

On our anniversary, Luke had meetings all day and an dinner/evening meeting at church where he had to present something and I was sick.  Needless to say, we didn’t celebrate.  Luckily we had an impromptu lunch out the day before.

On my birthday I had a meeting and Luke met me for lunch and then we went to church after school (after arguing with Lauren about her violin practice with which she was having a hard time taking my coaching).  We had dinner at church and then worked with the kindergarten choir.  I am directing it this year so I asked them to sing me happy birthday 🙂

Luke and I have agreed that next year we celebrate big for 40 and for 15 years of marriage and then when his turn comes for 40 we celebrate that too.  We have a tentative plan for a large awesome trip with my parents that may span our anniversary and my birthday (which is also my mom’s birthday) so that would certainly be great.

It is good that Luke and I are compatible in our celebrating styles but sometimes that means we could both use a kick in the rear because we tend not to celebrate things and while that is fine, on the other hand, why not celebrate things?  We need excuses to celebrate and have fun from time to time.  We are so busy and we also purposely ignored some celebrations soon after Nathan died because they were so painful that we have gotten into a rut.

So – I hope to report some fun celebrations this time next year!

Life now

So – there has now been month of school already!  A month in which the girls leave the house at 8:00 and return at 3:45.   It is a new stage of life for me.  Last year with four half days a week for Lauren we were so busy during the day.  She needed things to keep her occupied the other half of the day.

The first weeks have been pretty busy for me actually.  My parents were here at the beginning and then I started cramming for Mendelsson’s Elijah, which the choir had been working on all summer while I was traveling and otherwise unable to rehearse.  I was also preparing to direct the kindergarten choir this year and going to more meetings than usual for the Children’s Museum as there is some really great momentum going on there.  Dropped into the middle of these weeks was a job opportunity as well.

So, I sit here in the middle of September.  Elijah was on the 11th and went really well.  It is the most demanding piece of music I have ever sung, partly because it is 2.5 hours of singing and also because it is just difficult music.  I was on the verge of giving up but I am glad I stuck with it.   There were many hours of rehearsal at church as well as at home.  We are back to normal choir hours but only for a month because we will start working hard for our Christmas concert very soon.  I am blessed to be part of such a large talented choir.

The first kindergarten choir night was on Wednesday.  I had a lesson plan and it actually worked very well.  I have been helping in that choir for a few years now so I knew what to expect.  I have never directed anything before though.  Fortunately it went as well as possible.  Going forward it should be less stressful.

The Children’s Museum project is gaining momentum on two independent fronts that should converge next month and could really make the museum a reality.  It is fascinating to have in inside look at how this city works, who makes it happen, and see such exciting visions for the future.  We’ve had nothing but negative for a few years.

Through a connection I was offered a very small bookkeeping/administrative job that I will do from home for just 3 hours a week or so.  It will start in October and I am excited about tipping my big toe back out into the working world.  I had assumed I would have to start at something outside my field so it is great that it involves a teeny bit of accounting.  It is a far cry from my last job as a CFO but that is just fine for now!  I think there will be similar opportunities in the future, and there are even a few possibilities cropping up, but this job is fine for now.

I will also be helping out at the school and perhaps some volunteering in the children’s music ministry office at church.  Luke and I are also on the Stewardship committee which will be busy in October.  Oh, and I am starting to attend Tuesday morning women’s bible study.

The girls are continuing their music lessons and are both making great strides.  Lauren is dropping ballet but she really wants to add swimming.  Swimming is twice a week after school though, so hard to fit in to our schedule.  She may have to wait for spring.  Lauren has been pretty tired getting used to full day school.  Julia has a musical theater class in addition to her cello and she loves it.  They will be doing excerpts from Newsies.  Both girls are in choirs at church while Luke and I are doing the kindergarten choir.

So – life is busy, and good.  This morning I am still in PJs with a few errands to run and tasks to complete but I am feeling pretty lucky to have this down time.  Luke is working very hard, as usual, at work.

Oh, and yes, I wish I had a sixth grade boy’s schedule to add into this mix.

Vivid dream

I often write about Nathan dreams..this wasn’t one.  I also often have dreams where I die – this one is different.  This dream woke me up a 6:22 this morning.

It was widely circulating that the world was going to end.  I sort of believed it but was skeptical as well.  I dropped of Lauren at Luke’s parents house and told her I would come back to get her later.  I then was driving north on I-25 and I called Luke because it was almost the supposed time for the world to end.  I told him kind of lightly it was almost time and we kind of laughed but then ahead of me I saw the city just collapsing in flames and I told him that it was happening and I told him I loved him but I was very calm and at peace.  I had a sensation of falling and falling and falling and as I fell I cried out to Jesus, but not in fear, in anticipation and love.

Then, I woke up.

Wow – I have just never had a dream like that that involved my faith.  It was not a nightmare, per se, but it certainly rattled me enough to wake up, and I supposed the dream had to end because when I was done falling, I would have been dead.

It is one of those that is still with me, many hours later…

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Candy Pants

Candy Pants is what I call these pajama pants.  I rarely wear them – they are high waters now, but they are really comfortable.  I grabbed them out of my drawer the other day and have been wearing them this week.

Why am I blogging about them?

They are full of memories.  Five years ago Nathan and I went to New York city to stay for about 10 days and have him start a new clinical trial.  So new, he was the first human to try it.  The doctor in charge of the research told us it it could be “a cure”.

After the first treatment and we were getting close to our return date we had an appointment where the doctor told us that he really didn’t want Nathan to go home because no one had ever had this treatment before they were concerned about unknown side effects.  I still remember the call home to talk to Luke about it.

So – we didn’t go home (not until December).  Fall came to New York City and all I had packed were summer clothes.  I went to Old Navy to do a little shopping and bought the candy pants (since Halloween was the next holiday and so they were the cheapest long pajama pants they had).  Luke and Julia eventually came to visit with some more clothes for Nathan and I, but I must not have requested any more pajama pants because I wore the candy pants every single night.

It is hard to believe that was 5 years ago.  There are so many memories.  I was just remembering when Nathan was in the hellish in-patient run there and we just scanned him and he had progressed on treatment.  He was neutropenic and his counts were not coming back.  They were insisting on giving him shots to raise his counts even though the medicine could be given by IV.  They felt it was more effective in the shot form.  That day, I knew there would be no cure for Nathan.  I grabbed one of the residents and pleaded for the IV form.  I heard the usual spiel about shot versus IV. and I told them that he had this scan and that I felt he was now terminal and I was not going to allow him to give him a shot when he could have an IV.  I had turned the corner from trying to save him to preserving his quality of life.

Now I remember why that memory came up.  Luke and I were discussing the fact that we never had “the talk” (for you non-cancer parents that would be the your-child-is-going-to-die talk).  We realized we didn’t need the talk because we had been running the show and making the decisions for quite a while and so we could see that when the last great attempt was made, and his bone marrow could not longer handle chemo, and his disease was still progressing, that it was the end.  No doctor had to tell us that.  I am glad for that.  We didn’t give up – we then researched all other available trials at the time and had phone calls with the famous Dr. S. in Vermont who rescued several children and Nathan just couldn’t do what was mandatory chemo for that trial at the time. the candy pants…you see how no memories are simple when it comes to what we have been through.  So many things are chained together.  I don’t mind wearing them..I am sure I snuggled with Nathan while I had them on.