Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Being Thankful

I really enjoyed this Thanksgiving. It was an unusual thanksgiving because my parents were there. Normally we only celebrate with Geoff's family. So it was nice to have my parents. I also got to see my cousin Shari & her family who were visiting her husband's sister in Monterrey. I loved being with my family for a change. And it was such a treat to be with Shari.

Of course I had to remember last TG when I was unable to eat anything. This year, I was able to even eat some sugar - in the form of apple pie and vanilla ice cream. Unfortunately, I discovered that the sugar didn't effect me like it always had. And now I can't seem to stop eating a bit every day. But, hey, I feel grateful that the chemo cleaned me out like Ajax and now my body seems to be able to handle everything!

Today I went to a support group at Womencare. I've been going to these again. Remember when I went to my first one before going to chemo? Well, I got freaked out and didn't go to another one until 3 weeks ago. The freak out had to do with seeing a lovely, sweet, delicate, gentle and vulnerable woman talk about her chemo not doing anything. I couldn't even go there mentally right then. I needed to believe it was all going to work. I needed to stay strong throughout the entire treatment.

Now that treatment is behind me, I can go to this support group and have gotten a lot out of it. I'm with other women who have walked my same path and understand what it's like to face death. I actually am able to enjoy being with women who are stage 4, etc. I find them empowering and enlightening and understanding. Today, the third time I went back to the group since I've been going again, I was told that the woman who originally scared me had died November 20th.

I have a PET scan coming up sometime in the next couple of weeks. It definitely brings up that fear of death again. So the hardest part about hearing that that woman died was wondering about her kids. I guess I'm not afraid of death really, it seems like it would be a relief of some kind - like going to sleep. But I don't want to leave my kids. I don't want to leave my parents. I would hate to have to say goodbye to any of my loved ones and friends. I watched "Bucket List" before Thanksgiving and couldn't understand wanting to travel or do the things that were on their lists. My list only includes 2 things:
1. Improving my relationships so that I feel love and give love more.
2. Establishing a "successful" practice and enjoying it to the point of feeling good about myself and what I can offer people.

The things that excite me these days have to do with my writing. My article came out in the Jewish Community News and the Sentinel says it should be printed there this weekend. I've posted it online as well and am so hoping that the Jewish moms who need this article will find it. Just today Aimee told me that in her drama class they will do an Xmas play and they went around the room describing their fondest Xmas memory. Aimee didn't say that she doesn't celebrate it. She told everyone that she has fond memories of going out to eat at a nice restaurant in Palm Desert. So I'm glad she didn't feel left out. My kids are too old now for me to come to their class and make latkes and teach the dreidle game, so that their holiday has some kind of presence at school even if no one acknowledges it.

This Thanksgiving, my friend, Andrea's father was downtown in S. Cruz (I can't call the town "holy") and saw swastika flags hanging from two windows. An article about this was published in the paper today: http://www.santacruzsentinel.com/ci_13898408 It makes me glad that my article will be coming out soon and I so appreciate this one editor at the Sentinel seeing it's value.

The rebbe of Chabad found me when I was in high school and somehow knew I was on a mission. And I will continue to promote being Jewish with pride and honor. I feel very lucky to be one of the chosen. And I'm not afraid to claim choseness. It's not easy to be chosen for this mission. There is so much darkness. But spreading the Light is what we are here to do and also finding the Light within the darkness so we can uplift it. I believe this is a choice that all of us have - not only those who were chosen to do the job.

I read somewhere on Chabad.org that the gematria of this year in the Jewish calendar spells out the same number as does the number for the promise to Abraham. The only time in the entire Torah that the word "faratzta" is used. It means to spread out all over the world. So the promise to Abraham was that his descendants would spread out over the entire world. To spread the Light. There is no hope for the darkness because the promise was kept. And perhaps this year we will get to see the outcome of this Light being in all 4 corners of the earth. Those dark flags were there for only one reason, for us to see that there is darkness here and to bring Light.