I’m not always at my best. In fact, I’m probably not at my best half the time.
On any given day – especially within the past month – there’s a good chance you could have found me in the corner of my closet or locked in the bathroom crying because it was all just too much during that one moment. I had my five minutes of getting it all out and then pulled myself together.
This summer has been lots of things. It’s been fun and exciting.
It’s also been stressful and emotional.
As you know, when we bought the 70’s Landing Pad, the plan was for my in-laws to move into our home, the Beloved Foreclosure. They lived about two hours away from us and the plan for the last couple of years has been to get them down here. We didn’t think it would happen the way it did with them moving into our old house, but it worked out well.
So in the middle of May, we moved into the Landing Pad and Mom and Dad started doing some remodeling at our old place. (Yes, I’ll show you the changes they made soon – it looks totally different!) For the most part of June, there were contractors coming and going there. I think everyone’s goal was for them to be down here by the fall. We wanted the house to be completely finished so they didn’t have to think about a thing when it was time to actually move in.
July came and more contractors were lined up to complete more work.
And in the middle of July, we found out my father-in-law would be getting a stem cell transplant. In two weeks.
Let me back up for a moment though. We found out last fall that Dad (my father-in-law) had two types of cancers – Myleodysplastic Syndromes (MDS) and a version of Multiple Myeloma (MM). The only cure is a stem cell transplant.
Considering that I am so open on this blog, I realize this news comes out of left field to you guys. The truth is that neither Grunt nor I barely made it a single day without breaking down for a few weeks after we found out. Writing about it just wasn’t something I could do. My father-in-law has been a #1 supporter of this blog since the start. In fact, he might just be the only one who thought I could actually turn it into a business. He was one of the first to sign up for an email subscription and loyally clicks through every day a new post lands in his inbox whether he gives a damn about the content or not. He gives me a heads-up when the email subscription isn’t working properly, tells me his opinion about the ads on my site and holds my hand through filing the taxes for this business every year. This man survived Polio and was an Army Ranger. He’s in better shape than me or Andy. In our eyes he was unbreakable so when he told us he had cancer, it knocked us on our asses.
Since the fall, he has been in a clinical trial to reduce the “cancer numbers” as I call them because that’s the best way for me to tell it to people. The meds in the clinical trial were not a cure though and his doctor suggested a stem cell transplant that could potentially cure him. His doctor suggested that in the late spring / early summer I believe. None of us thought it would actually happen until the fall at the earliest.
Needless to say, when the doctors found a donor in July, we were surprised. We were also extremely happy because this donor was almost a perfect match.
However, upon going to the first appointment to start the whole process for the transplant, the doctors said they had to do more testing on the donor and the transplant would be delayed. This was July 19th – less than a month ago. After finding that out, Mom and Dad came back home and decided to kick it into overdrive. They started packing up their house, the contractors finished the work at our old house / their new house, we went into a painting spree and painted every piece of trim and every wall so it would be ready for them to move in. It was a whirlwind.
And during this whole time, we were also getting Bill ready to go to college. Since he’s playing football, he had to be up there earlier for practice.
So week before last, on August the 2nd and 3rd, we made a mad dash to finish painting before my in-laws moved in. On Thursday, August 4th, Bill left for college and I commenced crying like a baby and sitting in his room for hours after he left. Later that day, I left for Atlanta for the yearly Haven Conference. That Friday, the 5th, the movers packed up Mom and Dad in Knoxville. The next day, Saturday, they moved them into their new place (our old house). That same day, I think everything caught up with me and I wound up sick as a dog and had to come home early from the conference. On Monday, the 8th, Mom and Dad left for Nashville to start the process for the stem cell transplant.
We thought July was crazy, but it had nothing on the first week of August.
So in case you were wondering where I was last week, I did what I needed to do.
I took room to breathe.
I only posted once. I caught up on work items that had been on my to-do list since April. I put a dent in the 1/2 bath remodel at our own house. I cleaned up my desk. I cried every now and then. I drank a little more too. I laid around and watched TV with the Circus, who by the way has been one hell of a trooper during all this and by the way, so has my mother-in-law. That woman is a rock.
And you know what? I feel a little better.
I’m still worried about my father-in-law (he is doing well, though). I still have a shit ton of work that needs to be done. I still miss Bill and sometimes just sit in his room. And we all know I still drink. 😉
But I can breathe a little better because I took a little time.
And shockingly, the world did not come to a complete stop because I slacked off on my duties.
So what’s the point of this post?
I’m giving you permission to give yourself room to breathe.
It’s ok to cry. It’s ok to scream. It’s ok to drink a little more than you normally would.
Just breathe, baby girl. You’ve got this.