Sunday was a bit of a sucky day. I was exhausted, Paco and I were arguing (again) and the house was in utter chaos. I spent Monday night with Colleen, and was never getting around to packing up for one night and one day at UCSF. So I had to call in the forces. Vivian arrived and reigned in the kids. Clark and Babs arrived, and then Clark took Paco to his game. And I packed. I stuck around to hang with them, then gave Lemon the bath and put him to bed. Clark and Mom let Paco stay up, and let me hit the road until Steve came home. Thank goodness there is this network on which I can rely.
I hit the road in the new car, a 2-door golf, 5-speed. Steve and I are a bit too excited to have a little rev. We just figure this is our last chance to drive something small. Soon Lemon will have baseball equipment and we will be shuttling 10 and 5 year olds everywhere. So this was our swan song for a time. Steve let me take it to SF (JOY). On the way, I tried to hit BevMo, but it was closed. I have been drinking Kettle One here and there, and it just is not hitting the right way.
Exhausted, I arrived at Colleen’s hotel. I was worn out so much. Colleen gave me a second wind. She had found a few different airplane-size beverages for me to try out. Ahhhhhhhh. Grey Goose on ice. Colleen then added some Vitamin water. Just a splash and I drank it. We headed to Scalas (a fav restaurant near Union Square) with her Adobe Software Yoda: http://www.deke.com/. The glory of Grey Goose continues. I did not embarrass Colleen, or so she says. (I must have). She and I chatted half-asleep and late into the night. I don’t know the last time we had time to do that.
The next day, I was actually hungover. A first in over 2 years. A hilarious win. But a win.
For breakfast in Cole Valley (learning the ‘hoods in San Francisco), I met my old friend. Not old, but we grew up a few blocks from each other. In high school, we were close friends. When my dad started to become ill, I tended to push people away. When we reconnected last summer, we opened with apologies. I apologized for my horrible attitude when I was 18, She apologized for not being “supportive” in those days. This is only her mind. In my mind, she was. I made the choice never to visit her at UCSC, and I made the choice to lose contact with most friends from high school. She would have answered any call.
We picked up conversation like 20 years had not passed. She even ended up coming with me to UCSF. It was just a wonderful experience.
From a good meeting with Dr. Clarke, I went across the street for the infusion. Sunny had to actually go work (tsk!).
The team at the infusion area is just extraordinary. I feel like they are Brain Cancer Camp counselors. I had to make the announcement, for the humor effect. Laughter is the best medicine. And I had a hangover. One of the rockin’ charge nurses cracked up. She knew. She knew it was a weird hurdle to conquer, but a true one, nonetheless. I cannot drink what I used to love…wine, beer. I dislike spirits. So it was always a sip or two before the burning started. Now there is Grey Goose in the freezer. A good balance for steroid weeks!
Bea arrived to infusion, in burrito hell. I cannot eat anything like that after about 2PM. I am up all night in gas pain. Poor thing, she was. She went from constipation to the opposite. As we all do. Her dad ended up driving her to UCSF that day. And he was just warm and lovely. He reminded me of my dad’s parental warmth.
Papa Bea looked quite similar to mine. Though Bea’s dad was not as tall, and (obviously) thinner. But the hair, the skin, the curls, the gray at the temples reminded me of my tween years. Dad would ask Colleen to muss his hair all the time (tousle). I was in charge of tackling his tummy with a hug, an “oof” we would call it. That was the noise he made every time. Paco now does that to me, I just realized. He calls it a tackle hug.
When I asked if I could touch the hair of Papa Bea he smiled and said yes. I tousled quite a bit. Papa Bea had a beard. He said his wife would not let him grow his hair too much. I had to laugh. My mom did not like it when dad had a beard, so it did not last long, and she loved it when he cut his hair. For one moment, I could feel my dad’s hair. And we all cracked up.
At one point, there were four GBMers in the room. We don’t normally get to talk too much, but the nurses made sure we were all introduced. I don’t remember names too well anymore, none of us do. But they liked the hangover announcement, or at least humored me.
When I got home about 4, the kids were having a daddy fan club day. They boys were happily enjoying some daddy time. And Steve had the biggest smile I have seen in a time. Then I got the Lemon baby dive. Ahhh, the baby dive. And the tackle hug. Steve and I smiled. I am paid so much.