No, I did not die. I did not get divorced. I did not move to a shack in the woods.
I last wrote to you in March, before our family took a trip to The ATL because our youngest daughters thought our 2009 trip to Georgia Aquarium was the highlight of their childhood, and we had always promised we would take them back, and when we realized summer vacation was impossible to schedule, we decided to take a spring vacation and thusly we did plan a trip to The ATL. My mother, upon hearing we would be fewer than 1,000 miles from her, asked if she and Papa could join us and we said YES!
Maybe in another 11 years I’ll share their faces from this last trip, but see how small they were when we went in 2009?
This one is from 2021. It’s still amazing. Five Stars, Would Recommend.
When we returned home, my favorite admin person ever (MB) left the office, and within a month, Mentor left too. Eventually the office took an intern and hired a new admin, but no new person to take on Mentor’s work. Mentor says her absences benefited me professionally. Still, I grew tired of being “all by myself.” She rolled her eyes when I made comments that began with “While I was here ALL BY MYSELF…” which became a pitiless joke between us. Angst and panic aside, her absences did provide additional opportunities for my professional development.
Also in the spring, I got diagnosed with a new autoimmune disorder. Not a big deal, since it runs on my mother’s side. We all start the day with a thyroid pill and are expected to live as long as we would otherwise. I want to make it known that this pill has improved my quality of life substantially. I now wake up alert as other people have always claimed they did but I could not relate. I’m overall less tired. My joints ache less, particularly my right shoulder, elbow, wrist. I no longer itch like a madwoman. My hair is thicker. My face is not as round as a Wall-E people anymore. It’s quite nice.
No magic pill for female flooding fiascos, but eventually I was granted a surgery date to yeet my uterus et al.
There is something to be said for surgical risks. They turned my attention back to Milton’s “When I Consider How My Light Is Spent”. When your doctor says you absolutely cannot return to work for two weeks after and she’d prefer you take a month off because you only get one chance to heal, you start to think about YOURSELF. Particularly how one of your bosses suggested YOURSELF could maybe work from home that second week. More specifically how regardless of working from home, YOURSELF would return to the office to be strangled by labors undone. With that looming end date, on understaffed job, and maybe my life altogether, I decided icannotwiththismuchlonger became icannotwiththis and Fin.
Enjoyed long, lazy days with Moo.
Went to the Indiana State Fair with Bubba and Moo and Kiki.
Moved Sassy in at my alma mater.
Had several of those Women Who Lunch days with MB and Mentor, along with days where the pot sat on simmer, gettin all good.
Baked a fair amount of banana bread.
Visited Sassy at Family Weekend.
And then at the end of September I had surgery. Or so they tell me. The nice man put the mask on my face and I can’t piece together much after that…off and on for a few days. I was comfortable in the surgery center’s recliner. Obviously happenings occurred in the hours between the recovery room and the recliner, I simply don’t remember them. I thought I had a spiritual encounter, some beautiful and kind brown-skinned person with shiny, wavy black hair, very angelic I thought – might have seen a halo — turned out to be an earthbound spirit same as me. I saw her again when they wheeled me out to the car. With a pointed finger, I gasped, “You’re real!” Other people saw her, too, so I know. It’s only been a week since I was told she helped The Mister take me potty. Do I know how to have meaningful spiritual encounters or what?
For a good time, ask Moo to do her impression of me when I came home later that day.
I am always surprised and grateful not to have died in surgery. No matter how many surgeries I’ve undergone, I remain wildly excited to have been rewarded with more life. I woke up from the surgery with less pain than I had going in. No bocce ball in my pelvis. No low back pain. Similar to after c-sections, I felt light, like freakin Tinkerbell.
Unfortunately, I didn’t recover as quickly as I expected. It was difficult to be inactive (and a little helpless at times.) I still have some limitations, but I am 100% glad I did it.
At 20 days post-op, Moo, Kiki, and I went to the Covered Bridge Festival.
Soon after, I watched Moo compete at Bands of America.
I schlepped my enhanced professional development hither and yon and I landed a new position in a new office – a thriving, growing business chockablock full of people.
Watched Moo compete at Bands of America again.
Celebrated Thanksgiving with the fam, including the boy one and his roommate.
As is traditional, I show you my aging face and with candor, I tell you, we are all aging and I’m here for it. My nose is growing, my eyes are fading. My face is fuzzy and dry. Don’t hate on your aging self. Old isn’t a bad word, neither is ma’am. Take your old face out and do things that make you smile, which will make other people smile.
I put the tree up.
Moo will be an adult this week, and then The Mister will be 51.
Right now, my Chinese food is on its way.