They should put warning labels on chocolate Easter bunnies: "Do NOT leave unattended in a car for any length of time, especially in the southern states." It does not take much heat to turn a cute and very appetizing chocolate bunny into a disgusting looking blob.
Why do I write this, you might ask? Because, of course, it happened to us this year.
My brother and sister-in-law came down for Easter. We were consolidating our efforts to bring much Easter weekend happiness to all six of our combined children.
Over the course of the weekend, all six of the kids' bunnies were inadvertantly left in a vehicle, where they made their hideous transformation.
Because looking at them was downright appalling, it was suggested that they just be thrown away.
But my ever resourceful mother suggested saving the chocolate for melting down later, stuck the blobs in a plastic bag, and tossed them in her freezer.
Jump to Wednesday this week, when my precious friend, Kim, shows up on my front doorstep with four pounds of the BIGGEST strawberries known to mankind. They are actually called GIANT on the label.
As soon as I looked at them, I said, "These would make great chocolate covered strawberries!"
And, as soon as Kim left, I called my mom and asked for some chocolate.
They were, by far, the best tasting chocolate covered strawberries we had ever made!
The next day, I went to the store and bought all the left-over chocolate bunnies I could find, too!
Once you go through something difficult in life, you become unwittingly a member of "the club". Whether it is being laid off from your job, having an external fixation device (like my husband did on his crushed leg), losing a child, having cancer, or facing any other crisis that life may throw your way. It is not something you choose, it chooses you.
But, once you become part of "the club" you have a choice of what to do with your experience. You can let it consume you, you can master it, you can help support others through similar circumstances.
After surviving my experience with cancer, I feel it is a priviledge to be there as a support and encouragement for others just beginning their journey into its unknowns.
While there are many similarities shared between cancer patients' experiences, because of the varied nature of cancer, treatment, life circumstances, and responses, there are obviously many differences.
So, Julie, if you read this, would you please use the link on the left sidebar of my blog and email me? I am trying to find you! Short of camping-out at Target (where we met) I can't figure out another way. There is no way to respond to your comment here on my blog.
I have just learned about a friend-of-a-friend who is in a similar life situation to yours and been diagnosed with ovarian cancer. If you would be willing, I would love to pass your email address on to this person.
I called my friend Linda this morning and was able to swing by her house to clean up my untamed (and untouched by scissors) mane (It is all of 1 1/4 inches long now, you know!).
I was thinking ahead to Easter pictures, and how nice it would be to look properly groomed for posterity.
In an effort to save you all from straining your eyes to actually see a difference, I have refrained from posting pictures (Linda says all she trimmed was a little fuzz). But while it may not be that obvious, it feels great to me!
My apologies to those of you who check up on me regularly.
I am still here, and doing GREAT! Cancer-free is a good place to be.
What has surprised me, though, is that, despite the fact I am "well" I am more tired now than ever.
In the mornings, I drag myself out of bed just in time to get the kids going. At night, I often pass out in one of the kids' beds saying goodnight. A child who has yet to be "good-nighted" will come wake me up, and I will move to their bed to sleep. Sometimes I make it to my bed, sometimes I don't.
Being well is exhausting!
Both my regular oncologist and radiation oncologist have assured me that it will take a good six months (from the end of radiation) to get my stamina back.
SOOO, by August (wow that's a long way away . . .) I should be feeling back to my normal self. That means a lot of things just have to go undone. And lately, that has meant my blog and emails, too.
Usually, for me, spring means projects, big projects. Last year, I (with help from my parents, Don, and the kids) built a fort in the backyard for the kids. (Have I ever mentioned my love of power tools . . .?) But this year, the projects will be small. I bought supplies for my "project" yesterday. And I think, with some help from the M's, we can get it done this week. (I will post pictures when we are done!)
And our 200 square foot garden needs some major tending. God has seen fit to give us some "time" to take care of that in a few weeks. They will be doing testing at the kids' school and none of mine fit the grade/class qualifications, so we have four days off with no homework! I just hope my 30 min to 1 hour of energy a day is enough to tackle that job.
In the meantime, I am enjoying doing the mundane. Yes, I was cleaning my bathroom yesterday, and I was thinking to myself what a blessing it was that I was able to do that. Can you believe it?!?
Cancer has definitely given me a new appreciation for many things, like doing housework, eating (and being able to taste what you put in your mouth), and having hair.
Today is your eighth birthday, my third born daughter.
How blessed I am to have another girl around in our house full of boys! And how much more amazing that in this house full of boys, you truly are a girly-girl!
You constantly remind me that there are difference between you and your brothers. And hopefully, they are learning from you as you all grow up together what girls like and don't like.
You are my angel on earth. It never ceases to amaze me how any of us can be less than loving to you but in response you rarely ever do anything but love us back.
You take joy in finding ways to do things for others. Often making sacrifices on your own part. Whether it is a toy or a donut or your time or effort, you are always willing to give.
The way you care for your little brother reminds me of me when I was little. You are so nurturing, sometimes even when he doesn't want you to be. I always know he is in good hands when you are around. And it doesn't do him any harm to have two mommys!