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Up and Down and All Around

Posted Jul 18 2013 6:50pm
Whew, I feel like I've been through the spin cycle a few times. Sorry I haven't posted here in a while. This summer generally has just been so busy and exhausting for me - this past week in particular. Thanks to those of you who checked in on me - I was touched by your thoughtfulness. So, the highs and lows...let's start with the highs...

My husband and sons skipping stones along Lake Ontario at sunset.
We spent four days traveling and camping our way to the far northern reaches of New York state for my college reunion. As you know, I was worried about managing the trip and the reunion and thinking I might feel left out among the healthy friends of my youth. I shouldn't have worried. I had an AMAZING time! We mainly went for the reunion at my old sorority house. It was the 25th reunion for the year behind me, and they organized a massive group of friends from several surrounding years (from '87 to '90). There were probably 30-40 of us from those years who showed up, plus a smattering of alumni from recent times and from the 70's and 60's.

It was soooo much fun! Though I hadn't seen most of them in 26 years (other than letters at first and Facebook more recently), it felt as though no time had passed at all! We were all so happy to see each other. We reminisced and told stories and laughed and laughed and laughed. My face hurt from smiling and laughing so much!

I didn't feel left out at all. Most of them know about my illness from Facebook (I don't talk about it much among my friends and family on Facebook, but I do occasionally mention it, like on Awareness Day), so I didn't feel like I had to explain anything. There were lots of chairs on the porch, so I wasn't the only one sitting. And when I got tired of standing after a group photo, I just plopped down on the stairs - a couple of my friends joined me and the others moved down to the bottom so we could still talk face to face (I really hate being the only one sitting at a party and staring at people's bellies all night). Although most people were drinking beer or wine, I wasn't the only one drinking water, and - unlike when we were students - drinking was not the center of attention!

The only thing I missed out on was going out downtown (it's a small town) and dancing until 2 am Friday night! The women from our classes went out en masse, took over some of our old bars, and partied like it was 1986! They even went out to The Bagelry (an amazing place!) at 2 am for after-hours pizza bagels, just like the old days. So, I missed all that, BUT...I did manage several hours of socializing with everyone on the porch at the house both Friday and Saturday evenings, which was an amazing feat for me. I think all the laughter counteracted the exertion!

A big shout-out to my incredible family because I never could have managed this without them. We enjoyed camping, and it gave us a nice respite from the crowds of laughing, shouting women! My husband and my two sons were great sports, hanging out while I caught up with my friends (there was one other husband and one other teen for them to hang out with!). Everyone kept saying how incredible it was that two teen boys were so patient and thoughtful. I'm lucky to have all three of them!

Oh, yeah - the bad stuff. I don't want to dwell on that now that I am smiling thinking about the weekend. It's just been an exhausting and stressful week for me. My husband has been out of town, and the boys and I have had just 3 days to unpack from the last trip, clean up the house, and get ready for another trip. My son got an ear infection over the weekend, so we ended up making two trips to the doctor's office, 3 trips to the pharmacy, plus all the other errands, etc. Then my husband had a medical scare last night, 2000 miles from home (everything seems to be OK for now). Whew - just feeling totally wrung out right now.

Back to the positive side...one more big, exhausting day for me tomorrow, packing up and driving the kids to their grandparents' house, with a stop on the way at our Lyme doctor's...and then...I get 2 days all to myself (by myself!!) and another 4 days alone with my husband. I have big plans - to rest and recuperate!

Here's a photo from the weekend - that's me in the front, holding the Phi, with a big smile on my face!


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