Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Book Meme

Copied from Smash's blog...though I did go to the trouble of changing the answers! ;-)

1) What Author do you own the most books by? J K Rowling - I'm sure 7 tops the list!

2) What book do you own the most copies of? I honestly don't think I own more than one copy of any particular title.

3) Did it bother you that both those questions ended with prepositions? Not a bit.

4) What fictional character are you secretly in love with? Emmett Cullen

5) What book have you read the most times in your life? The Mozart Season - Virginia Euwer Wolff

6) Favorite book as a ten year old? Definitely one of the Babysitters Club books - I loved those!

7) What is the worst book you’ve read in the past year? Dixieland Sushi - Cara Lockwood. It wasn't awful, but it really wasn't that great. It's one that I picked by cover - I try to pick a couple of those each time I visit the library.

8) What is the best book you’ve read in the past year? Water for Elephants - Sara Gruen

9) If you could force everyone you know to read one book, what would it be? Ditto Smash's answer - Harry Potter series.

10) What book would you most like to see made into a movie? Something Borrowed/Something Blue - I hear there are plans, and I'd love to see them materialize.

11) What is the most difficult book you’ve ever read? Something I had to read for high school, probably...I remember "Red Badge of Courage" being difficult to get through...and I know there were others.

12) What is your favorite book? Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

13) Play? I don't have one...I'm rather uneducated when it comes to theater

14) Poem? I'm also not much for poetry...look at me, all anti-literature.

15) Essay? I'm supposed to have a favorite essay?

16) Who is the most overrated writer alive today? I think Smash is right - Stephanie Meyer

17) What is your desert island book? I'll be different and say Twilight

18) And… what are you reading right now? Just finished Goblet of Fire...I'll start on Order of the Phoenix next.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Dog Bowl

We visited the Dog Bowl at Fair Park today. If you haven't been, I highly recommend it. Once a year, the Cotton Bowl becomes the area's largest dog park. They have vendor booths and kiddie pools filled with water all over the field, and this year they even had a band providing entertainment. I'm intimately acquainted with this because the second time I let Jock off-leash, he decided to go UNDERNEATH the stage! Fortunately he quickly came out the other side...I certainly didn't want to make a scene by going in after him!

We only stayed for 30 or 45 minutes. Branden's only a few weeks post-surgery, and his knee still tires quickly, so we left before too long. On the way out of the park, we stopped for a picture. This is the best of the lot - even though Branden's not looking, the pups are!

Jock, Pepper and Branden

Monday, May 11, 2009

A Surprise from my husband

My dear, dear husband surprised me this weekend with a year's subscription to Netflix!!!

It was his gift to me for taking such good care of him while he's been recovering from surgery. (His words, not mine - I swear!) Of course, I didn't do any of it expecting any kind of reparations, but this sure was a wonderful surprise!! I should get my first two movies tomorrow, and I can't wait. If you have an account and would like to be my Netflix friend, just let me know what your e-mail address is and I'll add you. :o)
I used to have Blockbuster Online, once upon a time, but it's been a few years since I closed my account to save money. I'm glad to be back on the mail order movie bandwagon. And I love the instant-movies option Netflix has - we even watched an episode of South Park on the computer on Saturday night after I signed up!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Branden Update

I want to start by saying thank you to everyone who has offered support over the last couple of weeks. They've been a bit rough, but I'm starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Having friends who I can lean on, people who will bring us food - it all means the world to us both.

Branden had his follow-up appointment with his doctor on Friday. It was a very positive visit, and I think it really motivated Branden to work on his recovery. The doc told him the following:
1. He needs to start putting weight on the leg - effective immediately.
2. He should start working on keeping his leg straight.
3. He should wean off the crutches over the next two weeks.

And he goes back to work on Monday! He'll still be behind the desk for a while, but it's a start. ever since then, he's been doin exactly what the doc said. He's already able to hobble about, and this morning we walked all the way to the other end of downtown to go vote...albeit very slowly and with the aid of the crutches. This is great progress!

I'm excited to see him begin the recovery process, and even though we've still got many months until he's 100% again, I'm very encouraged so far.

The weekend is going well so far. Last night I went with my friends Lindsey and Christina to go see a performance of Crazy for You put on by the Music Theatre of Denton. Operawife played the role of Irene, and the show was absolutely fabulous! I was reminded of just how much I love musicals, and I hope to attend more as funds allow.

I also got to meet a fellow Knottie/Nestie, Rachel, who I've "known" online for quite a while now - since we were both planning our weddings and posting on the Knot message boards at the same time (she got married last November). I was excited to finally get to meet her in person, and she's just as sweet in person as she is online!

I'm currently watching Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone with Branden. I need to watch "Chambe of Secrets" tonight for the Harry Potter Revisited contest (see sidebar), but Branden wanted to start from the beginning, since he's never read the books or really paid attention to the movies - though he has seen one in the theater with me and my parents. I suppose I should go pay attention...I always notice new things each time I watch these movies.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

I am not okay

I have to admit much as I've tried this week to be okay, I am not okay.

I will be. But I am not yet.

I have tried to be strong, and for the most part it has worked. And I know I will continue to be strong. But deep down inside, I am not okay.

I am not okay with the fact that my stepdad has lung cancer. That is not okay with me. That makes me angry, and hurt, and it is just so wrong. It isn't supposed to happen to him. He is too good for that. It's not okay.

It has been one week since my parents invited us over to tell us the news. I am inspired and in awe of their positive attitude. I am doing my best to emulate that positive attitude. For the most part, I am doing a good job. But I still know that deep down inside, I am not okay.

I am not okay with the fact that it is stage three...and inoperable. I am not okay with what he is going to have to go through...the chemo, the radiation...whatever course of action is decided upon by his doctors once all the test results (needle biopsy, PET scan) come in. I am not okay with the fact that I now know what a PET scan is. I am not okay with the fact that dirty, ugly, black cancerous cells are making themselves at home inside his lungs. They have no right to be there.

I know in my heart of hearts that he will fight this. That he will go into remission. That my parents will have great vacations and fun RV trips. That he will be in the waiting room when I give birth to my first child. That he will be around to see that child grow up, at least for a little while. That he will have a wonderful life, just as he has the past 66 years, until it is his time. The doctors say he has a really good chance of making it to the 5 year mark, because he's otherwise in such good health. And that's just an could be much more than that.

I am definitely fact, proud...of the fact that he is in such good health. I am proud that he has lost so much weight (in a healthy way) since his triple bypass surgery three years ago. I am proud that because of those choices, his body is prepared to fight. He's always had a fighting spirit...I know that from all the stories he's told me over the years...but now he has the body to match. I am proud of him for that.

I can't decide if Branden's surgery has been a good distraction from all this...I'd like to think it has. Taking care of him post-surgery has taken up most of my physical and emotional energy since then. He's been an excellent patient, and I know he hates feeling like a burden. But he has not been a burden. I am taking care of him because I love him, because I made a vow that I would be there for him no matter what, and because I know he would do the same for me. It really isn't any's just energy-consuming, what with fixing meals, keeping up with his Polar Care 500, taking out the dogs four times a day, keeping things picked up, making sure he's clean and well-fed and has water and medicine and entertainment...

Like I said, it's no problem. It just consumes my energy. And so I am not okay. Not yet. And perhaps I'm not supposed to be yet. Maybe that's okay. Maybe it's okay that as I sit here, listening to the hum of his cooler, watching him sleep, that tears roll down my face. Maybe it's okay that I had to leave my best friend's party because I couldn't sit there and watch people smoke. (I feel awful about was her day, and I wasn't okay enough to celebrate with her).

I do know that I've never felt so old as I do now. These are adult situations that I'm dealing with, and I hope, at least outwardly, that I am dealing with them with as much grace as I can muster. This blog post...this isn't my public face. These are my private thoughts...but somehow it helps to get them out in the world.

I am not okay...but I will be. I don't need sympathy...if anyone deserves that, it's Wayne, or Branden, or my Mom, who are all doing what they have to do to move on. I am playing my part, and I will be okay. Really, I will.