Having cake and eating some too


Last night we celebrated the twins’ 14th birthday. In our family we have a tradition that you can get whatever you want for dinner on the evening of your birthday. And a cake from whole foods. Which is better than anything I can bake. The twins wanted meatloaf, mashed potatoes, and steamed broccoli. I cooked during the day when Clay was taking a walk with my friend Ruthie. And our dear friend Eileen insisted on making them cake…well 2 cakes. Cakes that you could easily serve in a restaurant. It was very impressive. We had a nice gathering of friends over to partake in the sugary goodness. We sang, we ate, we played apples to apples. They were pleased to no end.

We did not get them anything yet. We asked everyone to pitch in for a best buy gift cards so that we can get them a laptop. They will need a computer of their own when they go to school next year. They were very content with that. And because we have so many kids we do not do a birthday party every year. The twins had a big one last year. It works out better this way. Its always somebody’s time to get the big party. This year it was Clay. Alec will get a graduation party. Jesse will be going with us to New York to see Spamalot on Broadway. I cherish all of this. I don’t care how many years I am here it will be a gift every time one of my children reaches a new milestone. For Clay it is his recent ability to walk and his emerging vocabulary. For the older kids it is a moving forward academically and getting older. It is all celebrated either in my heart or with little family celebrations. There is still so much to look forward to.

Tonight we went to a celebration of another kind. Our church has a big communal dinner 4 times a year. We do this when people chose to become covenant members or to be baptized. The kids and I will celebrated with the rest of the congregation. It is always a treat to spend time with so many people I adore. And to eat good food. I spent a lot of time in the nursery breaking up arguments among 4 year olds. This is mostly because anymore I get nervous in big groups. I never know who to talk to or what to say. I know this seems implausible but it is true nonetheless. I did however watch a lot of people become members of Circle and that was great. And it was very comforting to be among some of my favorite people. Even just siting next to them and not talking to them. So, Hi to all my favorite Circle peeps..you know who you are! I love you. Thanks for being awesome.

Thank you to everyone who gave me a bit of sympathy regarding the passing of my friend Rachel. We did not know each other very long but I adored her. About three years ago I lost my friend Sara to metastatic breast cancer as well. She too was in her late 30’s. While I was pregnant with Clay that Hall and Oates song ,Sara smiles, came on the radio. I cried so hard I had to pull over onto the side of the road. I missed her so much. And I miss Rachel now. Breast cancer scares me. Is it okay to say that? These two beautiful women are no longer here. It seems so weird when a young women dies fighting this dreaded disease. It all makes me so angry that we can’t/they can’t stop it. I just feel so uncomfortable. Why isn’t there a cure for cancer? I want to know.

People send me books about herbs that cure cancer. Or supplements. And then maybe the answer is in the raw food diet. Kristine thinks it is and she is in Florida finding out how to make her cancer disappear forever. I hope she’s right. I hope that’s it. Alaina fills my mind with tales of the new ways they are treating my disease. She tells me about bone marrow replacement and advances in therapies for our disease. I love these information sessions because they make me think I might live through this. Maybe I am living in a time in which a cure is near. A real cure. Not just the chemotherapy that keeps me alive. Alive indefinitely as long as I let them poison me. Go ahead poison me. Keep my cancer from spreading all over the place. I’m game. For now this is my best option. I am going with this until something better comes along. I’m sorry to everyone who desperately want me to take thousands of dollars worth of supplements I can’t afford. Sorry I am sticking with my Navelbine and Zometa.

Currently, it is what we have come to call my good week. It has been 10 days since my last chemo and I have a lot of energy. I cleaned my house, helped my daughter with her science project, and had a great deal of happy time with 15 month old Clayton. The good week is always good. I am trying to enjoy it. Usually I just end up over doing it. Which I certainly have done, as apparent via my very swollen arm. But in the end I would rather have a swollen arm than a dirty house. It is definitely a personality defect no doubt.

The good week is very short and very sweet. I plan to spend a lot of time fawning over my children and husband. Thursday will come far too soon.

5 Responses to “Having cake and eating some too”

  1. debi says:

    I think I always say the same thing. When you have a good week and tell us all about whats been going on like the twins birthdays , it just makes me smile a big smile. Joe and I just got done praying for you and a friend of ours who is also battling cancer. It feels great to be part of the army of others who pray for you. My best to you Andrea, debi

  2. Donna Arnold says:

    Hello from SC, Andrea:
    You don’t ever have to apologize for any decision you make regarding your choice of treatment options. As I have said before, we have faith in our treatment team that we handpicked, and while folks mean well, we don’t want any herb recommendations, or you should “try this” or you should “try that”…and we stand by that…its very confusing enough to wade thru what the doctor and therapists recommend and tell you, without having the added pressure of, well maybe this is worth trying, or gee, I should have tried that……each person has his/her own beliefs, and no one person is right or wrong….and I am certainly not stepping on anyone’s toes, or beliefs……my point I am trying to make is this…..try and respect the person who is going thru cancer treatment, and their decisions for their course of treatment. Sometimes, we just have to keep our own ideas and opinions within…treatment regimens are hard enough to endure, without added pressure of “second guessing” what the treatment team has chosen or recommends…does this make sense???
    You are truly a remarkable, beautiful human being with such a beautiful mind and soul!!!!!
    Stick to your guns, follow the regimen you are comfortable with. People mean well, and we all will try to “grab at straws”…everyone of us wants desparately to believe that herbs, or, raw veggies, purified water is the “end all, be all” cure for everything……while some things it can be good for….other things require conventional treatments, medicines…..that is just the way it is……
    Please no one take offense, and read my words just for what they are….’words”….I mean no ill will towards anyone….my concern is for Andrea…we support HER choices of treatments, therapies, and modalities, and she not have to feel she owes us an apology because she doesn’t take expensive “other” treatments….allow her to make her choices, decisions, and be able to feel comfortable with that….
    Andrea, keep the faith, baby!!! You are making such great strides in the future you want so desparately to have….just since I have been tagging along with your posts, I have seen so much progress in your journey!!!
    Hang in there, chica…….we are on YOUR team here in SC!!!! Donna

  3. joshua says:

    you’re out of control! who has the energy to keep up with you?

    great quote from love feast…
    “go circle!”

  4. Dina says:

    Happy birthday you awesomely cool 14 year olds. I am sure the older twin enjoyed his few minutes (was it 6???) of being older. I won’t mention any names. lol.
    Hope to see you guys soon. Love you, Andrea!

  5. the other naomi says:

    Happy Birthday love to Tucker and Asa from all of us at the hippie farm!
    yo’ auntie