Tis the Season – Bah Humbug!

Gentle Readers,

Let me say up front that I am not against Christmas in any way, shape or form. Some of the best times of my life have been around Christmas. Its just that last year and now this year we have had the specter of cancer hovering around us. Last year it was the Doll and this year me.

Both years we have been able to decorate inside but the only outside decorations are the wreath on the front door. This is vastly different than when we had all kinds of lights, blow-ups, and music all over the front yard. It was awesome, but it doesn’t look promising with the big day a little over a week away. The good news that between me and the Doll, we have almost finished our shopping. Thank Goodness for Amazon and gift cards.

We are planning for some Holiday gatherings for both Shelia’s family and mine, so it should be some fun at least. Humans need to make the best of things when possible. Lately it seems like I am faking it until I make it more often. But then again, I do it well.

We also were able to plan and attend the Combined Holiday Gathering for the Pellissippi and Dowell Springs Toastmasters Clubs at the Carolina Ale hoys on Thursday night but cut it a little short, so we could attend Granddaughter Rose’s Holiday Concert at Bearden Middle School. Its been almost 30 years since Tony, her Dad, went to school there. Oh, my how time flies!

Our social life sounds exciting but truthfully my fatigue is not better at all. Some days I can do more than others, but I must push myself more often than ever in my life. Fatigue can be either from the radiation or the cancer so that does concern me that it is more from the cancer which may mean that the treatment is not effective.

But that is what consumes the cancer patients mind for so much of the waking period. As much as I try to stay in my active mind by focusing in on daily activities and social functions, the fatigue makes me tired and lets me slip back into my default mind which is typically negative about the outcomes of my battle.

I attended a Mindfulness and Meditation Class at the Cancer Support Community on Saturday morning and it was nice. The leader was excellent, and the attendees were all very nice and friendly. I was reminded that I do have a problem with Meditation. Even with guided meditation and guided imagery I seem to be at one of the two extremes. Either I am so sleepy that I drift off or my mind races from one thought to another one and it is usually something I feel must be done. Occasionally, I can meditate effectively and when I can it gives me a temporary peace at least.

Speaking of things that must be done, ever since I have been diagnosed, I have had an ongoing list of things that are important to getting my affairs in order no matter if I transition in a few months or a few years. I have been obsessed with putting things right and I have been pretty good about being objective in what the priorities should be, and I have completed a lot of stuff on my list.

There is a sense of urgency on my part. So much stuff to do. Redraft my suggested obituary, write the dreaded final letters to many of my loved ones, finding appropriate pictures and music for my celebration of life, etc, etc, etc. The list is long my friends.

Shelia and I and the kids went to Pineville Kentucky on Saturday evening for the Celebration of life for Shelia’s best friend Sharon’s Mom. It was a nice little celebration, but it got me to thinking that if my cancer advances and it becomes clear that I won’t make it make much longer perhaps I should have my planned celebration of life BEFORE I die. I suspect it would be more of a roast, but it would be cool to be present when people tell the big stories (lies) about me.

I can attest that whether I am alive or have transitioned to the light I will be present, so I am looking forward to hearing all the good stuff that people say about me. Most of it should be funny too! LOL

This will be a busy week so I trying to figure out how to pace myself effectively. On Monday Shelia goes back to the orthopedic surgeon who put the plate and screws in her arm to see how she is doing, then I have a Toastmasters meeting, and finally a Doctor appointment for me.

On Tuesday I go to the Dentist and Shelia has a Dr appointment and after we both have an appointment with Dr Clayton Bell, an Integrative Medical Doctor to get some strategy on complimentary medicines and supplements to help us with our respective cancer battles. Sheila has seen him before, but this is my first appointment. What I like is that he promotes a plant-based lifestyle which falls right in my lane. I am excited to consult with him.

On Wednesday, both Shelia and I have a writing class at the Cancer Support Community I suspect that it will be like last month’s class. I may even put one of my stories or possibly one of Shelia’s on the Blog soon. The Doll is a good storyteller.

On Thursday we have Dowell Springs Toastmasters and that evening we have the Relative Caregivers Support Group. In between Haylee has a Dr appointment.

On Friday I am hoping to attend the Gentle Yoga Class at the Cancer Support Community. I have tried to attend the last 3 weeks but for various reasons I haven’t made it. A little later I have the ETMP Combined Board Meeting to set strategy for 2019.

On Saturday Shelia’s family will be here for a Christmas followed on Monday with Tony and Brianne and Family her on Christmas Eve.  Then the big day itself. Maybe rest then for a day or two!!  Isn’t that what Santa is planning?

Just writing about all this scares me and makes me tired. If I can push through the fatigue and accomplish all this, it may well be declared a miracle. Even without the cancer battle this seems like a week that would tax anyone. But this IS our life and I will live our life until I can’t!

I will check in with everyone soon but before I go, I just want to thank each of you for your support and love. When I am trying to push through the fatigue I do think about the number of people on my side that are  sending me good energy and prayers and it certainly helps me muster up just a little more energy. Please keep sending  it to me!!!

Love Jim


6 thoughts on “Tis the Season – Bah Humbug!

  1. Sounds like quite a busy week indeed! Every single day there are thoughts entertained and earnest prayers said on your behalf. Much love for you and your wonderful family!


  2. Jim,
    I am continuing to send you positive energy and prayers! Wishing you all good things, including some time to relax after Christmas day.


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