Wednesday, September 19, 2012


Just a quick update. After 17 hours and three planes, Nicole is finally in Brisbane. I briefly was able to hear her voice as she Skyped from the airport to let me know they all found each other.
I have lost count of how many times I have heard her coming down the hallway. Of how many times just today I have gone to her room to tell her something. Of how many comments I started to make and then realized no one would "get" but her.
Don't let anyone ever tell you that parenting doesn't mean sacrifice. Since the day I held my first child 28+ years ago, I have willingly, cheerfully, lovingly put aside thinking of me first to think of someone else first. I imagine I will keep doing so as long as these four people walk the earth--or as long as I do, at least. Is there a bigger gift to give each other than loving them enough to do what it takes to help them be happy? (Good gawd, Tami, you used to be a writer, but that sentence may destroy your entire reputation.)
I am off to take 15 minutes on the couch to rest this ridiculously swollen throat. But as I close my eyes, my heart is lighter because as much as I miss her, I am even more excited for her and what awaits her. She may be THERE, but she is also RIGHT here.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

She's on Her Way

Well, she's gone.
It was . . . tough, really tough. Two things took the edge off. First, we took something to slightly dull our emotions. Second, the last 30 minutes were filled with confusion over a suitcase that weighed too much, and a missing cell phone. They served as good distractions indeed.
Watching her hug her brothers was tough. Seeing her hug Joseph and the tears in his eyes was harder. Hugging me about pushed me over the edge. I kept seeing Dorothy in "The Wizard of Oz" hugging Scarecrow and whispering, "I think I will miss you most of all."
I miss her so much, I feel like I have a huge hole on me .  . I can feel the cold wind whistling through it and wonder why others don't point and comment. But I am also so excited for her that I am almost beside myself. She has an adventure ahead of her that is like no one I know.
And time will heal the wound, I know. Having it just means that I love her fiercely. As I write, she is waiting to board her plane in L.A. for Fiji! Fiji! Amazing. Send her good, safe travel thoughts and send me patience and a good hug.
Cuz, you know, she's gone.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Confession Time

Not doing so well today.
I AM better, but it's a slow process, and as soon as one thing gets better, the next one seems to kick in. I was up at 5:45 with a killer earache and a throat so swollen, I wasn't sure I could swallow the aspirin I was taking.
Got more sleep (yay!), got up and finished an assignment between 8 and 11. Went out for some iced tea with the girl. Ran into some pretty interesting people in the process, but all I could think was STOP TALKING TO HER. She leaves in 30 hours . . . 28 . . . 26. . . .
It's 2 pm and I have cried five times. No, not IN FRONT of her. Just when she runs to the store or takes a shower or is still sleeping. I do NOT want her plans to change. I just want her to find a way to go off on her adventure AND stay right here.
Not much to request, eh?
Lots of work, too much physical pain and discomfort, and my best friend leaving all at once? Just seems a little mean.
Don't mind me. I will be the one in the corner with the covers pulled over her head, whimpering.
Actually, I will be sitting right here at this computer working and smiling and keepin' on keepin' on cuz that's what life is about.
But . . . not doing so well today.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Inching toward Recovery

I am feeling a lot like an inchworm these days. 
Inch by inch by inch I am moving toward health. Progress is being made, but damn, it is slow. 
What isn't slow? 
New projects coming in fast and furious and I simply don't have enough hours in the day--especially hours where I don't feel like I am seriously sick--to keep up with deadlines. I have been apologizing left and right for missed deadlines and have even told some editors that I just can NOT do it. 
And time? 
Man, just last week I had 100 days before Nicole was leaving. 
Now I have less than 60 hours. It has gone too fast. Each minute becomes precious and none of them are ones that I want to spend writing test questions but instead sitting on the couch holding the hand of my dearest friend before I can no longer do so. 
Today we went on our last Goodwill run together. In the evening, we went to a play, and then over to VooDoo Donuts for a late night treat. Soon, we will go to bed and spend eight hours in sleep. If I could find a way not to do that, I would, but I am finding that cheating sleep only ends up making those inches toward recovery far slower than usual. 
Still coughing. Eyes still coated in gunk. Still exhausted by end of day. And still, time marches on, no matter how I beg it not to. 
Inchworm, inchworm. 

Friday, September 14, 2012

Apologizing to Karma

I must have done something really hideous to people that I don't remember, because I haven't been this sick in decades. Nights are awful--I tried taking a cough suppressant so I could SLEEP and found out that all it does is stop me coughing just long enough for it to build up and when I start again, it is terrifying. Coughing to the point of throwing up  . . not good. Plus pink eye matting my eyes shut every couple of hours. Plus on and off fever. And a headache that would stop armies.

I know. Go to the doctor. I keep thinking if I just wait another 24 hours, I will be better. I have flashes of better, but then night comes, and I think heck, maybe I'm dying and someone forgot to tell me.

Okay, enough bitchin'. Off to take a shower and see if I can breathe for a little while. Thanks for listenin'.

Monday, September 10, 2012

The Flu STILL Sucks

I really, really, really hoped I would have been completely over this flu by now, but alas, t'is not true. Shakespearian styles aside, I feel like crap. I haven't been sick in YEARS and apparently that means I have to make up for it. I have taken Vitamin C, and lots of aspirin and I feel better long enough to work a couple of hours and then just melt down. I have due dates looming and I feel terrible that they are sliding by me, but I can't manage more than a few hours and then I'm back on the couch contemplating what needs to be amputated in order for me to feel better. So far, the only thing that doesn't hurt on me is  .  yes, I'm trying to think of something that doesn't hurt . . . . my CHIN, there, my chin can stay.

Sorry for the complaints. Just really, really need this to be gone. I have only 8 days left with my girl, so I don't want to spend them sick. Even moreover, I don't want HER to risk getting it. I will actually offer to take it another week or so if it means she stays healthy.

That's it. Nothing witty. No clever last line. See, the damn flu has even taken my clever verbiage.
Send healthy thoughts.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

The Flu Sucks

This just in . . . . . THE FLU SUCKS.
I know. Shocking news, right? Who knew?
I haven't had the flu in so long, I forgot how NOT fun it is. My son came home from camp with it and guess who got it? Yup, me. Fever, deep cough, sneezing, congestion, and oh man, the muscle aches. I feel like someone ran over with me with the street cleaner and I have blocked it out of my memory. When your fingers hurt on the keyboard, you know you're sore.
So, I am trying to balance working and resting, although deadlines are being pushier between the two. And I am trying not to breathe on anyone else in the family because I don't want Nicole getting it before she heads out of the country, or Joseph because anything respiratory hits him hard.
So, send healthy thoughts and chicken soup. Although, honestly, I would prefer some hot chocolate and oatmeal cookies because, you just learned, the flu sucks.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

The Countdown is On . . .

My darlin girl leaves for the other side of the world in ten days.
She is leaving under the best of circumstances . . . going to a place that she had dreamt of going for years. Going to live with people who, if I had to design a family for her to live with, couldn't have fit my requirements more. They are funny and irreverent and loving and gentle and compassionate and wonderful. Going at the end of our summer so that she arrives in time for their summer and then back home in time for our summer again. NO WINTER. :) Going with all of the money she needs that she worked very hard to earn. Going while she is young and single and free to explore herself and the world around her.
And I am honestly, sincerely thrilled for her. Man, how many people get a chance like this in a lifetime?
I know we will Skype.
I know we will write.
But the idea of not having her beside me in the aisles of Goodwill . . . . watching chick flicks together in the afternoon . . . . laughing our butts off at something stupid . . . coming down the stairs to give me a morning hug . . . well, that feels like it is ripping me to shreds.
I will adjust. I know that she is going where she will be cherished and loved. It's just hard to be the one that will be doing it from afar.
Ten days.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Nature's Torture Device

I always thought I would be one of those people who could stand up to torture fairly well. You know how you watch movies and think, how long could I stand that without revealing top secret information like my weight, how often I've cried at those stupid phone commercials, or how many times I have watched the YouTube video of laughing babies. A kidney stone a while back taught me humility in dealing with pain. It still ranks as the most painful thing I've ever experienced.

However, a close second is that most evil of ailments . . . . the one that sneaks up on you when you're sleeping peacefully, dreaming of old friends and new adventures . . . the one that attacks without any warning and immediately reduces you to a sniveling, whimpering, cursing victim. You know this attacker. It is Mr. Charlie Horse.

I used to get these fairly often and they made mornings miserable. I haven't had one in ages and apparently, I needed to make up for that. I was hit with one this morning and ohmigawd, it was hideous. Like liquid fire from ankle to hip. To complicate matters, I was sleeping out on the deck, so I was IN a sleeping bag on a low air mattress. Getting out of these on most mornings takes Olympics style leaps and twists, and with a Charlie Horse taking an entire leg out of commission, well . . . . I am not sure what one would call these contortions, but I am sure that "graceful" would not be considered.

I cursed . . loudly. Moaned. Cried a little. Rolled out of the bed and just whimpered, trying to put weight on my leg. Finally, it let go and I could breathe again. Now, less than two feet away from all this action Caspian and Nicole were sleeping on their own air mattresses. Did they notice my agony? Did they even stir? NO. Nothing. Not a twitch.

They can sleep through THAT, but let Joseph reach out and give me a grope, and one of them will mutter, "Get a room." We have a room--it's the deck and you're on it.

Anyway, now I am limping and every time I start to stretch my leg, I wince.  Fortunately, no terrorists were out on the deck with me at the time, so I didn't reveal any national secrets. Chances are, if the terrorists had been there, they would have slept through it anyway.