Friday, April 25, 2008

Garden and updates

Hurrah!! The Garden is in. We started building it a month ago at the Minga work party. There was not enough time or materials then to finish the project but not to worry. A couple of people, specifically Patrick and Jim would not quit. Both guys came back on multiple occasions to finish the fence, deliver soil and hang the gate. Annette, Pats wife, also made a fantastic snake sculpture that guards the gate. It is so great to be the recipient of such hard work and dedication.

A couple of years ago Jim said something to me that has stuck in my mind; "One way to find out who your real friends are is to call them at four in the morning. " Nothing about having cancer is convenient, on the contrary it is a giant inconvenience. But folks like Patrick and Jim don't seem to mind. They jump up and help. So many people have jumped up and helped it is amazing.

I was speaking with Aunt Judy yesterday. She had read a study that was done on people recovering from serious illness. The study found that the single largest factor contributing to recovery is a solid family and community support group. I know gratitude is one of my big themes here in this blog but I want to look at it from another direction for a minute.

Think of all of the young men that are returning home from service in the middle east right now. Many of them with life changing injuries. Many of these guys went into the military because their resources were limited in the first place. The burden that these poor guys put on their families is huge. I have also seen in the news that the support that our government is supplying for these guys is lacking. It is a real shame that those guys should want for anything. I don't mean to get all political here. I am trying to show how lucky I feel. Lucky to live in such a great community, lucky that I have in my my life I have reached out to so many folks and made such great friends. So many four-in- the-morning-friends. So thanks Jim Patrick and Annette and so many others that are helping us out.

Other News:

We have been working on getting our ducks in a row for the Bone Marrow Transplant (BMT). Really it is mostly the chickenhawk doing that. We don't know when the BMT will be. It is dependent on when and how well my current oral chemotherapy is working. Once that oral chemo's results start to plateau, then I will go shift over to the BMT. We are hoping that is going to be solidly in the middle of the summer so that it has a minimal impact on the kids and school. But, as I said earlier, there is nothing convenient about cancer.

Yesterday, when I was getting out of bed I could tell that the C/H was really upset about something. I started probing right away. She quickly shared that she had read in our health insurance contract that our policy on pays for 100 days worth of outpatient medication! That is a big deal. The actual cost of the meds that I am taking is in the many thousands of dollars per month range. If we have to cover the cost of the meds on our own after 100 days we are screwed! We both got morose and resigned at the same time. I was thinking about which bikes I would sell first and which retirement account I would drain.

Then the C/H spent an hour working through voice mail hell and called the member services people to get clarification... "Oh no," the voice on the other end said, "you've got it all wrong. You only get 100 days worth of meds at a time once you run out of those, you can re-up for another 100 days." We got all worked up for no reason. That is the nature of the beast. We are on the edge so much of the time. It doesn't take much to push us over the top.

So my question to you; when have you gone over the top about something that ended up being no big deal?


Matt said...

this summer i did a bike ride from venice to budapest. i booked a hotel in venice with the internet on the phone while in france for (what i thought) was a great price of 40 euros a night.

when i checked in with my confirmation stuff the front desk guy (owners son) said there was a big problem, that the room was really 400 euros a night, so my 2 night stay went from ~80 euros to 800! euros. the place was super nice but i couldnt afford the 800 euros. the whole first day i went everywhere looking for other boarding, there was none, no hostel, it was mid july, the hordes had arrived.

so i stayed there. had a chef cook me omelets at breakfast, great breakfast, comfy bead, a jacuzzi, near the church, with a view.

i go to check out and im ready to fight them on the bill, fight hard, get the us embassy on line, marines...and if air strike fails, use the emergancy credit card at the bottom of a pannier. the owner, dad, checks me out. he looks at my confirmation stuff, gives me one of those all knowing winks and says 'oh looks like well have to fix that price online. did you get enough to eat at breakfast? we have extra if youd like to take some on your ride, how do those campy shifters hold up touring?'

i left with some of the best sausage sandwiches ever.

bikesgonewild said... i read the title & saw the picture, my heart was just kinda overwhelmed...patrick, jim, annette & others...all the work that was done to create a beautiful environment where things can grow & mature & be utilized for sara, spencer & the girls...just so awesome...
...& that smiling serpent is "the best ever" (a term i usually use mockingly) but that honestly is the best ever...(looks like madrone, maybe ???...analytical mind at work)...

...seeing the garden happen, it's visceral, like i feel it more than i can say it but it's like how we all wanna see you grow healthy, spence...

...stay good, stay strong, get healthy...see ya...

Reagan said...

Just last week, my husband and I found a house that we really like...but we were only going to buy it so that his mother could possibly buy ours. I was soo excited! I loved the house and I kept thinking and making plans in my head about how we could do it. My husband decided we should wait a week and then re-evaluate. This wasn't a big deal because it's been on the market for for around 8 months. We waited a...1 week (yesterday was a week) I look online today and the house was taken off the market. Presumably sold.

I have peace about it because I feel we are led by God and he provides, opens and shuts doors as He is the only one who knows where we are going!

But I was totally worked up over it and even reconfigured all of our finances (to see how fast we could pay it off etc). Anyways - I need to remind myself to stay calm and let God lead!! He always provides!

Judi said...

Spencer - I wanted to comment on the military guys who got shit on by our government when they returned from Iraq or Kuwait. yes they did get shit on, some are broke from hospital bills - it's sad. My friend who came back from Kuwait last year, her b/f is in DC still waiting treatment for his back that he injured over there.

I also get myself worked up over a ton of stuff. Monthly acupuncture helps a lot but mostly I need to just calm down - not stress out about stuff so much.

I am glad your meds are covered. I know that was a huge relief.

Take it easy, sending healing thoughts to you and your family.