As I’ve written here many times before, it’s hard to be a sib.
Throughout this crappy little boat trip, Clio has gotten so much more attention than Elsa, of so many different sorts. She’s been the recipient of countless gifts and treats, only some of which have come in duplicate. She’s spent endless hours more with Alastair and me at the clinic, in the hospital, at home. And when we’ve gone to special cancer-related events, Clio has been the star, Elsa an afterthought.
There used to be a lot of tears and a lot of anger from Elsa. We’ve tried all along to even the scales to the extent that we can, and to fight for her when it comes to things like charity events and special outings; try to impress upon people that we’re all in this together, and that Elsa has had to be pretty damned brave, too. But there’s only so much we can do. And there are some things we just can’t control.
Like a couple of weeks ago, when we got to go to a Celtics game, thanks to the Jimmy Fund clinic. We had seats in one of the corporate boxes, which was really fun for all of us. Great seats, and free greasy chicken tenders and crappy pizza for everyone!
But during halftime the patient kids and only the patient kids (meaning, kids who are patients, not kids who are good at waiting, because that wouldn’t necessarily be Clio…) plus one parent got to go down on the court to high-five the players.
We knew this ahead of time, and told Elsa so she wouldn’t be too disappointed when the time came. I braced myself for a big scene. But to my immense surprise and relief she just said, “Yeah, that’s OK. It makes sense since she’s the patient.” Continue reading
Now that I’ve processed and decided to leave my Make-a-Wish guilt behind, I’m getting really excited for our trip to Disney and Universal Studios.
Alastair has been hitting the guidebooks, and a friend of a friend who helps people plan Disney vacations, via her company Kingdom Planners, has provided some great tips and sample itineraries (thank you!). Reading about the specifics is helping to dissolve our misanthropic distaste for theme parks, and anti-establishment suspicion of the corporate juggernaut that is the Disney company.
It’s also reviving fond memories of the two trips my family took to Disney World when I was a young kid, times when we went to visit my grandparents, who had a condo in St. Petersburg.
One of my most vivid memories — one I’ve never really forgotten — is from the first time we went, when I was in kindergarten. It was an evening visit, and I donned my most beautiful dress to ride Prince Charming’s Carousel. I chose the horse with all the flowers on it (which I assumed was supposed to be Cinderella’s) and rode side saddle, for the most princess-y possible effect.
But then I felt like people, including my parents, were watching and smiling at me in a fond, isn’t-she-cute sort of way, for attempting to be so damned princess-y, and I got embarrassed. I wished that, at the very least, I hadn’t done the stupid side saddle thing.
I know. Was I the world’s most self-conscious five-year-old or WHAT? Continue reading
After last week’s post in which I excoriate the purveyors of alternative cancer “cures,” I would like to take this opportunity to reiterate the fact that chemo — while effective — really does blow.
The girls want their pictures taken with any and all costumed characters. Even weird corporate spokesrobots.
We just got back from a whirlwind trip to DC, where Alastair had several gigs, followed by the Jersey shore, (Ocean City) where my aunt lives, for beach / boardwalk / five pounds gained in less than three days due to Johnson’s caramel corn, Kohr Brothers frozen custard, Brown’s fresh donuts and Shriver’s Salt Water taffy.
We went on our trip armed with a big backpack full of Clio’s meds, including the last of her doses of steroids for the latest cycle, which–as she withdrew–gave her some trouble with leg pain, such that the little bit of sightseeing we did in DC was tricky. (Thank goodness for complimentary wheelchairs and stroller rentals.)
We also traveled with a shot of our old pal Methotrexate, which is going to be a weekly part of Clio’s treatment for the next year. I gave her the shot on Thursday night, and as always, she was a total trooper. She even invited the four-year-old son of the friends we were staying with — who was in his own words, “Very interested in medical stuff!” — to watch.
She seemed fine that evening and first thing the next morning, but it went downhill from there. Continue reading
Every so often, people ask me if there’s a way to go back and read my old blog posts from my blog Baby Squared on Babble, where I blogged from mid-2007 (when my girls were 6 months old) through Summer 2012 (when they were 5-1/2 and, you know, we got cancer and all.) And the posts even before that, before I moved to Babble.
There’s never been a terribly easy way to to find and go through the old posts, and I kept meaning to build an archive here and never got around to it. But finally – FINALLY! — I’m doing it.
Below are word documents with the blog posts for each year. Be forewarned: They’re not carefully formatted. Most of the pictures aren’t included. Some content may be missing. Any links left in may or may not work. But it’s the best I can do on limited time.
Le paperback! On sale today.
Today is a good day. A day when I’m feeling — yes — refreshed and renewed. It’s 65 degrees and sunny outside. I went for a run this morning. I’ve got lots to do, but not so much that I’m feeling stressed. I’m wearing a spring-y shirt. I’m drinking a tasty au lait. And today is the day that the paperback version of Double Time goes on sale.
A year ago today, the hardcover version was about to be published, an event that ended up feeling rather anticlimactic. It’s a weird thing as an author; you work and work on this book, you see it all coming together — the cover, the pages, etc. — and then suddenly one day it’s on sale and…nothing really happens. I’d heard this from lots of author friends, and tried to prepare myself for the let-down. But you still sort of feel like there should be champagne or fireworks or something.
I treated myself to some extremely excellent shoes as consolation. But then, less than two months after the hardcover came out, Clio was diagnosed with leukemia. Which cast something of a pall over the whole thing. (Publishing the book, that is; not the shoes, which are completely pall-resistant.)
This time around, though, I feel like a much more seasoned author, and clearly I have some more important things on my mind than my book’s ranking on Amazon. Paperback launch? Yes, how lovely! I hope my book gets into the hands of more people as a result.
But what’s especially nice about this final milestone for Double Time is the sense that I can fully move on to the next project(s). I’ve had an idea for a novel cooking for some time now, and am starting to buckle down and work on it for real. Continue reading