Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Some pictures

Time has wings

The days zoom by faster than I ever could imagine....where on earth does all the time go? Right now my house is a mess and I'm behind on laundry and I didn't even cook dinner tonight, and yet I was busy every second of the day. Yikes!

(The washing machine is running now; Tessa's beloved "Crockie" the stuffed crocodile from Orlando suffered a fall into a puddle and that got me moving. And yes, we know that if Ryan got it in Orlando, it must be a 'gator, but Tessa loves crocs right now, so a croc it is.)

And what am I doing with the 24 hours that I am allotted in a day, the same as everyone else? Well, lots of things:

- Working out! I am determined to be beach ready by Hawaii, and now that I'm not in surgery mode, I'm also determined to take good care of my health. I heard another survivor refer to exercise as her "treatment after treatment" and that really struck a chord with me. Regular exercise has been shown to reduce recurrence by up to 50%, which is FAR more effective than chemo. I never, ever would have skipped a chemo because I needed to do laundry or sweep, so I'm keeping that perspective now. Of course, chemo lasted months, and exercise lasts a lifetime, but I'm trying to keep a good attitude about it. Last week I worked out 5 times, running a total of 13 miles, and tihs week I plan to do it again (I worked out yesterday and today with plans to do it again tomorrow and Thursday). I'm able to run 3 miles in about 29 minutes, which isn't exactly a land-speed record, but when I consider how much my body has been abused lately (surgery is not kind) I'm pretty proud of it. The marathon - October - is calling and my work is set out for me.

- Physical therapy. I'm trying for twice a week right now, to make sure that I regain lost mobility. I've made huge advances since my surgery, but I'm nowhere near "normal" and I want to be better than average or normal.

- Team Warrior Women. As a team captain, I'm taking my job pretty seriously, and I have been kept busy responding to emails and communicating information to the team. I can't take much credit for it, but I am DELIGHTED to report that we have 20 official members - double last year's size! - and so far my team members have raised over $16,000. WOW! These ladies are incredible. This makes the hour or so per day that I've spent organizing things seem very, very worthwhile. We have a half a dozen survivors on the team already, and I'm inspired by them more than I can say.

- Genentech. I'm preparing for two events right now: another trip to San Fran in mid-April to film a video for the web, and a speaking engagement in Seattle on May 5.

- Komen for the Cure. I'm back into doing volunteer work, and getting ready to roll out the I am the Cure program at this year's Race for the Cure. It's exciting - but it's about to take up lots of my time.

- Co-op & swimming lessons. Tessa and I spend one day a week at co-op with her buddies Zoe and Jessie; the three girls also take swimming lessons once a week on "my" day. It's a blast to be with them, and they're good friends who play well together, but it's a very busy day. I am also co-op chair...a position I never should have taken on because I'm too busy.

- Back on Weight Watchers. A few pounds crept back on when I wasn't paying attention, and they must leave. Immediately! I'm officially doing the program again, back to writing down every morsel, measuring and weighing. It's working, as I've lost a couple pounds already, but more work is to be done so that my smallest pants fit again. (I haven't gained a full size, but things that fit a few months ago fit uncomfortably now, and that's the best way to judge how things are going!) I plan to go to a meeting on Thursday this week and next, and to prove to myself that I can get this back under control in just a few weeks. The thing about WW that's both good and bad is that it's time consuming; instead of just grabbing a scone at a coffee shop when I'm hungry, I need to plan ahead, prepare more food, plan menus carefully. I should be doing all of these things anyway,so I don't mind, but it is taking up some of my time. Ryan is joining me on the program, and I'm thrilled to have his company and to give him support.

- Playing with Tessa. She's so much fun these days (for the most part; today was a bit of an exception but I'm going to forget that asap!): we've been going swimming together - she can actually swim on her own about 10 feet, and can even take a breath sometimes; Ryan's taken her bike riding (has to be a sunny day to enjoy that); we've been walking the dog together; she's writing lots of letters and learning their sounds; we've been doing art projects almost daily (I set them up, she does them, only occassionally requesting my help). We have playdates, we sing songs, we read stories, she helps me to cook sometimes, and I'm amazed at how she grows and changes each day.

- Trying out a church. Ryan, Tessa and I went to the West Seattle Unitarian Universalist service last Sunday, and really enjoyed it. We're not committed to it at this point, but we will go back and keep trying it on for size. http://www.wsuu.org/ I like their world view, lack of dogma, and open-mindedness. I realize it's not for everyone, but then, not everyone's church/view is for me, either. :-)

Mixed in with all of this is the usual: trips to Target for hand soap and bandaids, last minute treks to the grocery store, getting gas for the car, sewing on a lost button, cleaning up dog hair (how does one dog have so much hair?!), walking Shep, going to the park, grabbing a latte, visits to the vet, my usual doctor's visits (SO much less than before, but still more than I wish), trying to write in my journal on occassion, occassional dates with Ryan, occassional girls' nights, paying bills, figuring out the taxes....there are many, many things to fill each day.

This weekend was almost perfect. On Saturday, the Landahl's came over for breakfast at our house, and we all feasted and the kids got to play together. When they left, we went to the YMCA, and Tessa and Ryan swam (his first time seeing her go - he could hardly believe it!) and I ran on the treadmill before joining them; we had a quiet evening at home, the three of us. On Sunday, we had a lovely day - the best in a long while. The three of us got up, went to the coffee shop (C&P Coffee Company) together, then went to WSUU. There was a lovely service about right livelihood, and then afterwards we went to lunch with the Hisatomi's. We came home, and did some chores, and then Ryan & Tessa went for a bike ride while I prepared a Sunday meal (lemon thyme roasted chicken with baby potatoes and asparagus - a new recipe that I would make again) and then the Starkey-Burdett's came over to join us. It was a wonderful mix of work and play.

And in this way, the days pass. I'll take it!


PS Ryan's okay, but he took a spill on his bike. He has a terrible piece of road-rash on his thigh - it hurts me to look at it! He is working from home right now as it's really almost impossible for him to sit while it starts to heal, so we are incredibly grateful that his company allows him to work from home. He's got a system figured out for lying on the couch with his laptop on the coffee table. It's a surface wound, and it will heal, but he could use your good thoughts that it will heal quickly! He hopes to go for a bike ride this weekend again. :-)