The last week has been a whirlwind of busyness. The busyness exhausts us, but mostly our spirits are good.
Monday morning JJ had an appointment with the surgeon who will be putting in the port on this coming Tuesday. He showed us what a port looks like. I only half looked and listened because it makes me nauseous. Of all the things that has happened in JJ’s life in the last month, this makes him the most nervous. He’s really struggling with it.
Monday afternoon JJ had a Pulmonary Function Test, which measures his lung capacity. Only one of us could be with him during the hour-long test, so EJ chose to go this time while I sort of dozed in a small waiting room.
Tuesday we had an appointment at the sperm bank in a large city that was two hours away. EJ almost never gets lost, but we were tired, and we got turned around in the big city, called the sperm bank for directions, got turned around again, and finally arrived at the appointment an hour late. Fortunately, the people at the sperm bank are incredibly nice and understanding and weren’t upset that we were late. They were also very informative about the process and procedures. I found the whole thing very sci-fi and fascinating.
Wednesday JJ needed a blood test for his port surgery. I ended up staying home because our friend was going to return JJ’s computer, which he was repairing. It turns out JJ will need a new computer tower. He’s frustrated by the lack of a computer because his favorite game is very complex and only a gaming computer can handle it. I’d love to get him a new tower, but I don’t know when or how that will happen. While my guys were gone, I began to clean and organize the house in preparation for Chemo. I got the downstairs cleaned.
Thursday was Thanksgiving. EJ’s sister had invited us to their house, but there was going to be a lot of people there and we didn’t want to risk JJ getting sick and having his treatment delayed so we stayed home. I like large Thanksgiving gatherings, but I’m very glad we stayed home because we were utterly exhausted. EJ put the turkey in the roaster and I prepared yams and stuffing and made two pumpkin pies and a mincemeat pie. Then we sat and relaxed for a bit, watching the parade and football.
Later in the afternoon, I cleaned and organized the upstairs. Until JJ was diagnosed with cancer, we had been getting ready to build bookshelves downstairs, so I had not worried about finding space for new books because I thought we’d be bringing them all downstairs. So books were everywhere in the library/guest room. We have five bookcases in the library/guest room and books are double and tripled stacked and piled high. We love books. I mostly needed to clean that room so JJ can use the treadmill which is also in the room. The doctors say it will be important that he gets some exercise through all this. It will be easier for him to take a moment or two to walk on the treadmill than to go for a walk outside, especially if the weather turns nasty.
Later in the afternoon, EJ began preparations for the new washing and dryer. Years ago, our friend’s son-in-law hit a rough time and needed some money, so we paid him to do some construction work. The young man’s Dad owned a construction business and he had been learning the trade too. The problem is that the guy never listened to what we wanted. We had him put in our old stackable washer/dryer, which required some electrical work to put in a new socket (or something) but rather than do that, he hard-wired the stackable into the electrical box. That’s just crazy. So yesterday EJ had to unwire it so he could move the old stackable out of the bathroom. He was very careful, but something loosened up and we lost half the electricity in our house. It took an hour or two to track down the loose connection and restore power. EJ needs to put in a socket for the washer/dryer (the job he had originally wanted the young man to do), as well as other work. He didn’t have all the supplies he needed and the home improvement stores were closed, so he couldn’t finish the work. Just as well, we were all exhausted.
Friday EJ drove JJ back to the sperm bank while I stayed home to wait for the new washer/dryer to be delivered. While I waited, I made Challah Bread and homemade turkey pot pies. I also brought in wood and walked to the local little store for milk. I was really glad that the delivery men didn’t arrive until my guys got home. In fact, they arrived seconds after my guys did. EJ was able to tell them exactly what he wanted them to do. After the washer/dryer was brought in and the delivery guys had left, I fed my guys and then JJ went to his room for a nap while EJ and I drove to the hardware store (the little near one, not the big farther one) for supplies. He spent the next few hours working in the basement to do the necessary work to hook up the washer/dryer. He made great progress, but didn’t get it all finished.
We recently bought Amazon Prime, which allows us to get free shipping on many items we order at Amazon. Since we haven’t been able to find time to get to the store, I have been ordering things on Amazon. I have bought things to use at home when Chemo starts–like medical gloves and masks and a digital thermometer and healthy jello. And since we need to keep our spirits strong, I ordered a couple of bird feeders and a hook-thing to hang them on. EJ has been wanting to feed the birds for years now so this is for him, although we will all enjoy it. We will put the feeders outside the living room window. It will be fun and relaxing to watch the birds. I’ve already found our bird identification books and put them nearby. I hope we will get more than sparrows, but even they will be fun to watch.
As we sat in the waiting room a week or two ago waiting for the Chemo Class to begin, JJ made a bet with me about whether or not I would faint during the class. He lost–I did NOT faint–so I ordered him a dorky bear hat from Amazon. It arrived this last week. He told me that he has to complain about it in order to safeguard his masculinity, but secretly he really likes it. It keeps his head very warm. The sides go down into a scarf and ends with paws. The paws are actually pockets. I think he’s very adorable, my cub sitting there with his bear hat on.
Our car needs new tires and because we have so much to do and so little time to do it, we were going to get it done today, even though it’s Shabbat when we take a day to simply rest. EJ also needs to finish up the washer-dryer hookup this weekend. However, we are so exhausted that I think we can’t push ourselves anymore. We absolutely need this day to rest. We can wait until tomorrow to finish the work.
Hanukkah began Wednesday evening. It’s a beautiful holiday about letting our lights shine in the darkness, and not letting the darkness of the culture overcome us or our faith. It is probably during this holiday that Yeshua (Jesus) was conceived. (His birthday was probably during Sukkot, the Feast of Tabernacles, in which God became flesh and dwelt–or tabernacled–among us). I love the beauty and meaning of Hanukkah.
Hanukkah lasts for eight days. So last night, at sunset, we stopped working and lit our Hanukkah candles. Then we celebrated the beginning of Shabbat. As the beautiful candles were lit, we felt peace descend.
Now we rest.
More about Hanukkah:
Hebrew for Christians: Information about Hanukkah
Biblical Holidays: Why Are Christians Celebrating Hanukkah?