Saturday, May 27, 2017

Cobwebby Thankfuls

Oh, my goodness, have I neglected my blog! There are cobwebs everywhere, and the dust is thick enough to write your name in it. 

I've missed writing, and even more, I've missed my bloggy friends, but as much as I've missed it, the words just wouldn't flow. I used to try. I'd get my laptop out, turn it on, and maybe even try to write a paragraph or two before giving up. I progressed (or maybe "digressed" is the better word) to setting the computer in my lap but not turning it on until I finally didn't even pretend anymore and didn't even pick it up.

I've got a list of excuses as long as my arm. My mom was my biggest blog fan, and when she passed away last July, a little of my desire to write went with her. I began a second job this fall, working a couple of afternoons a week in a photo studio, and that, coupled with helping with photo shoots, has taken up a lot of previous down-time. It was Emma's senior year in high school, so not only were we busy with all of her activities, including Senior Nights for several of them, I was also on the executive board for Project Graduation (for potentially 500 graduates). I still haven't gotten over that whole fiasco of a presidential election, either, and that's all I'll say about that. Then in March, we were all stunned by the death of one of my daughter's friends in a freak accident. Spencer was the best kid ever, a friend to all and never without a smile on his face. I've known him since he and Emma was babies together in a club for stay-at-home moms, the club where I met his mom, who is one of my favorite people (she was an important part of my Ta Ta to the Ta Ta's Party five years ago). My heart has hurt so for my friend and her husband and daughter, and also for my daughter and her friends, who are too young to have to deal with something so terrible. I've tried to write about it, but the words wouldn't come, because I can't process it all myself. And my reason for starting my blog five years ago is in the rearview mirror now (more later on that), and I didn't know if I had anything else to say.

At this point, I had to decide if I was a blogger or a former blogger.

I'm going to go with blogger. 

And I'm also going to jump back in with the Ten Things of Thankful and include some things I should have written about AGES ago . Here goes:

1. My dad had knee replacement surgery on April 19 at the age of 82. Three days later, he was dismissed from the hospital and went to a rehab facility. He was there for only three weeks before he was released to go home, but boy, was he ready!

2. While my dad was at the rehab facility, torrential rains caused the lake to get dangerously high at the lake house, and weather reports said it could be worse than the flood of 2015 (which made its way into the basement of the house as my daughter and I watched, then we skidaddled). My husband and I went down there and sandbagged and moved what we could to higher ground (meaning higher than the floor, but it was the best we could do). We stayed there until the police began telling people to evacuate, and we told the house goodbye and left. Several neighbors and friends kept me informed on the lake level, and a few days later, the water level started going down.

3. Now, while we were all worrying about the lake house flooding, what we didn't know until the day I took my dad back home was that the basement of THAT house had quietly become a wading pool and then emptied itself. The water was probably not more than a few inches deep, although we can't be completely sure about that, but the bad news is many, many, MANY items were stored in cardboard boxes that were on the basement floor. A lot of books and Christmas decorations and more were ruined, but in all honesty, it was stuff that had seen better days and needed to go anyway. 

4. My dad had his surgery and rehab here in Joplin, and it allowed me to see him every day for the three and a half weeks that he was there. I have not seen my dad every single day for that long since I was in high school, and I loved getting the chance to visit with him daily.

5. The College Boy graduated from Missouri State University in the Honors College Magna Cum Laude with Distinction with a B.S. in Cell and Molecular Biology and minors in Chemistry and Psychology.  He's going to need a name change, for he is going to medical school in August! (Suggestions for a new moniker for him are welcome.) He will be attending the University of Oklahoma College of Medicine, located in Oklahoma City. He started preparing for this in middle school, and all of his work has paid off.

6. There was a tornado warning just as we were arriving at the arena where graduation was held. I dropped the College Boy off, parked the car, and walked the two blocks to the venue, sirens blaring the entire time. Emma was with me and was freaking out (and that's putting it mildly), even though I checked the radar and knew the storm was north of us and moving east, and we were in no danger.

In case you haven't ever heard tornado sirens, here's a small sample of them:

The ceremony was delayed for about fifteen minutes or so, as they hustled the graduates into a safe room in another building as they arrived while all their families sat in the arena. Had a tornado come through, those of us in the arena would have been sitting ducks. The jazz band played and played and played during the tornado delay, but at least it wasn't "Nearer My God To Thee."

7. Emma graduated from high school Summa Cum Laude two days after the College Boy's ceremony. I did not cry (although my eyes almost got leaky when she was singing the with her choir - those damn songs get me every time!). She is SO ready to move on!

8. We held Project Graduation that night for about 240 graduates (we were expecting about half of the graduates to attend, and we were spot-on). I don't remember the last time I stayed up all night, but I think it was probably at a sleepover in 7th grade, but I did it for this, it wasn't as difficult as I thought it was going to be, and I attribute it to the nine salted caramel cupcakes I ate throughout the night (I would have eaten more if I thought my belly would have held them). The event was a great success, and after a week, I think I have finally caught up on my sleep.

9. I got a hair cut.

10. And that reason for starting my blog that is now in the rearview mirror? After five years of treatment, which included 60 injections, one per month into my abdomen, I have finished my treatments for breast cancer - WAHOOOOO!!! 

I'm thankful. So thankful.

Linking up with Ten Things of Thankful. Join us!