Thursday, January 02, 2014

lazy river

For me, home will always be the Applegate River. I love Portland. I do. But I had to run away last week, make sure my mom-out-law was okay -- she's getting on in years -- and sit in one of her two recliners for four days. I called no one, visited none but my son and his aunts, her daughters. But when we were finally by ourselves, we did a Breaking Bad marathon. Hours and hours of non-stop episodes of meth drama. Rita, she's 83, is the one who got us started watching it years ago.

I kept saying things like, "Are you sure you don't want to go for a walk?"
"How about just one more," she'd say.

Two hours later we'd come up for air or a bowl of chicken soup or a bit of dark chocolate. Old women don't eat much, so we didn't occupy ourselves with food. I did have Duffy to contend with, so had to walk him from time to time.

Her place is exceptional. Acres of riverfront property, well cared for, with an enormous front yard guarded by fir trees and lilac, cattle in the acreages across the highway. You can hear them from the porch. Duffy did not get skunked this time around. The second evening we were there I opened the door to let him out, leash in hand (not on Duffy) and as soon as the cold evening air hit my nose it was fresh with skunk. He started to bolt, but hesitated (remembered?) and I caught him just in time.

It was good to get away and not sit in my home consumed with the third coming of chemo. I wanted to absorb the good days in the best place I know so far.


nina said...

Well now, maybe it ought to be a regular stop for you in these challenging weeks?

Funny about smells -- skunk, to me, seems more acceptable than perfumed air sprays. Skunk means there's life around me. And what a benign weapon! Scare off the world with your stink!

I should think that the third chemo dose is especially bothersome because there are still too many ahead of you. After, you're moving on to the tail end.

On the upside -- I bet your high temperature for Monday wont be -15.

greg|regan said...

hey there,

if you're on the same meds as i was... amazing how quickly my brain has been willing to forget their names... something like cyclophosphamide and doxorubicin for the first four rounds and docetaxel for the last four, AND if you experience it anything like how i did, then the last four won't give you nearly the dread that the first four give you. that nausea works something powerful in the brain and you pair it with the awful punch red of the chemo med and it must be something like PTSD thinking of gearing up for another round. but docetaxel doesn't give you the nausea and therefore spares you most of that palpable feeling of dread. your body doesn't hold onto the memory of how unfun chemo is like it does with those first two meds, and your mind is so much easier to trick than your body. at least... i found this to be true. you can 'gear yourself up' for the chemo you've got to get yourself through, but if you're physically anticipating it, you have to work that much harder to be okay with it.

you have to get through this season, and you'll go into summer healing. that can be a wonderful thing.

someone said...

What a great thought: halfway. Downhill.

I'm a country girl and love the smell of skunk, but bathing my dog out in the cold... harsh. Even the tried and true tomato juice didn't get it out.

greg|regan said...

Hope you are doing okay Judybluesky!