There's a popular Tim McGraw song that came on the radio as I drove my sleeping child home from baseball Saturday. The chorus contains the line,"Some day I hope you get the chance, to live like you were dying..."
I've heard that song hundreds of times, but in that moment, it hit me profoundly. There are elements of a terminal diagnosis that are equal parts blessing and curse. Yesterday our family had the opportunity to see one of the blessings: Mom got the chance to live like she was dying.
To say that it was awe inspiring, unbelievable, and heartwarming to see each and every person who filed past my parents to show their support and love is a mild understatement. A line stretched out the door, into the parking lot, and snaked around the building; some standing in the rain as long as two hours to share a minute or two, a hug of support. It is so inadequate, but thank you to each and every one of you.
I have seen again and again in the guestbook comments, emails, texts and messages this resounding theme of Mom being the one who holds people up, who helps people put themselves back together, and she was able in those few hours yesterday see some small glimpse of that coming back her way and what a gift it was!
I have hesitated up to this point to drop names into these updates because I am afraid of leaving someone out, but I would be remiss if I didn't thank the Powell, Weible, and Brown families for taking this idea for this little shin dig and absolutely running with it. I know there are many others who contributed the many desserts I will likely continue to wear on my thighs and rear for eternity. Thanks (I think) for your stellar cooking. We had several engineer types guess that we had 500 people file through AND we had leftovers...amazing!
We also wanted to thank Joanna (Pelz) Anderson for gracefully and at times through her own tears, documenting/photographing our family and this day for us. I've included what likely promises to be the best photo of the batch in the photo album for your amusement.
A gimpy Jamie White and Colleen Gibbs also dropped everything with less than 48 hours notice to create the most beautiful book for everyone to sign, and Rick and Katie Carmer appeared with the cozy throne we perched Mom upon for the day. Thank you.
Sunday for the first time in my life I literally watched Dad go completely speechless when I dropped news on him that his buddy from work, Bill Latham had passed a cap through City Hall, the Police Department, and Fire Department to create for our family an Emergency Trust Fund that already contains just shy of $3,000. I will pass along details for this account tomorrow when it is fully up and functioning but the generosity of all of you is absolutely astounding.
On a whole other note, I've put off writing much of the day anticipating starting this post with the stellar news that the Nexavar is in the mail and en route to shrinking these tumors, but at this moment I have no such news.
What I can tell you is that today my patience has again been tested to a level I never knew existed. Somehow Cheri Schmit called to check in with me again at the exact moment I transitioned from frustrated tears to a fiery rage; she gracefully took the baton and started calling on my behalf. We have collectively bugged the people at Nexavar to the point that they finally dished us off and we are now in the hands of the Walgreens Specialty Pharmacy.
Cheri was able to get Walgreens to upgrade our status from Urgent to Stat, which is the highest level. Things then came skidding to a halt when they decided suddenly mid conversation that because they didn't have a copy of the Power of Attorney on file, I had no right to be on the phone. Turns out I don't have a copy of this document in my binder, McFarland cannot seem to locate it, Iowa City isn't answering the phone, my Dad apparently wasn't good enough to verbal it on the phone.
At some point I am sure I will find it hilarious that Mom was out getting a freaking pedicure in anticipation of what the Nexavar will do to her feet while I am trying to refrain from punching holes in things trying to GET it...but at this moment I am everything but amused.
I hope to update again later tonight.