A place for family and friends to see what I'm up to. Visitors welcome here.

Hail Guest, we ask not what thou art.
If Friend, we greet thee, hand and heart.
If Stranger, such no longer be.
If Foe, our love will conquer thee.
-Old Welsh Door Verse

Monday, November 17, 2014

Hope. Well, and Love.

Have you seen this?

I am so lucky to work where I do.  My colleagues are fantastic.  One of the best of the best is a math teacher who is all kindness and enthusiasm.  Not a new teacher by a long shot, but the energy and idealism of a newbie and the polish of the veteran he is.

He's into Minions.  When his students found out, they started building him a collection.  A week or so ago I saw this on facebook and it made me laugh.

It was easy enough.  Printed it off, wrote "from Debi" on the bottom and tossed it in his box the next morning.  I expected a smile and a thanks - eventually.  I did not expect a thank-you email that choked me up, that said in part that he appreciated that with all I've been going through, I can still think of others beside myself and do nice things for them.

That is exactly what is getting me through all this.  The love of friends and family.  I was touched by the cards and the presence of long-time friends  and colleagues at my husband's memorial.  And appreciative of my son who didn't blink when I asked him to drive me to Santa Barbara and back because my ophthalmologist wanted me to see a surgeon for my eye problem. 

But once down from the surgery - and essentially helpless for almost two weeks - the support blew me away.  My niece didn't hesitate to cancel her plans for a two nights and the day in between to drive me to Santa Barbara, sit in the waiting room during the surgery, then to Costco for prescription drops.  The next day she drove back to the surgeon's Oxnard office for a check-up with a stop at a drug store on the way home.  She has her own health issues within her own active life, but she gifted me with her total attention.

And my mom!  Yeah, she's my mom.  But she also has her own health issues and drove herself out here to sit with me while I sat - head down - for two weeks.  She even figured out  how to work our TV system.  I haven't watched it in years but I guess abject boredom is a strong motivator 'cause she got that sucker on and to the channel that runs a show called Bones (her favorite).

Friends kept up the encouragement through facebook and text messages (which I could keep up with on the ipad on the floor and the cell phone on my lap.  When I returned to work I was met with a gorgeous bouquet of flowers on my desk accompanied by a big "Welcome Back" card signed by all the students.  As I stood at my desk and tried to not make too big a mess out of myself before the kids started in, one of the parents came in with the most delightful basket full of gift cards and treats and special "toys," all with Disney themed labels.  Like the pink beauty mask that you keep in the frig that had the label with Aurora saying "Don't forget your beauty sleep."  Or the sunglasses with the picture of Olaf that read, "In the summer you will be a happy teacher."

It was lovely and overwhelming.

I'm OK, and things are coming together.  It appears that I will have enough money.  I still have some physical issues to deal with:  two weeks before my husband's death I had to go to an orthopedist who diagnosed a torn meniscus (a year ago my dog greeted me with exuberance and hyperextended my knee, which I continued to try to dance on as well as make the two-mile round-trip walk to work and back.)  Oh, and he also says I will have to have a full knee replacement within the next two years.  And I woke up one morning with trigger thumb, which is more painful than the knee and first on my list of medical have-tos after the eye issues.

Which are getting better.  I'm scheduled back to the surgeon in late January.  He says I have the "potential" for 20/40 vision in the eye that was operated on with the possibility of refraction at the January visit.  Sometimes it seems like there has been no improvement in the eye for a while, then suddenly I will realize that I can read something I couldn't read before.  There is still a great deal of distortion - kind of like the wavy mirror in the fun house, which isn't all that much fun after all.  But overall, I am functional and optimistic.

"They" say it can take a year for full recovery from surgery for a detached retina.  The other "They" say it can take a year to settle an estate after someone dies.

2016 is going to be a spectacular year. And if I can push that forward into 2015, even better.

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