Saturday, December 16, 2006

An Unwanted Journey: Day 0388 - I'm glad we have you

Weekends are especially enjoyable right now. My wife and I are spending more quality time together on the weekends, doing simple yet enjoyable things together - things like shopping and other errands, getting up early on Sunday mornings and going to Starbucks for a latte and to listen to Tony Bennett's Duets, driving into the country or around the city to see the Christmas lights in the evening. Last weekend, I purchased an FM transmitter for my iPod. Now, with a Christmas holiday playlist of about 10 of our seasonal albums downloaded to the 60GB iPod, she and I can simply be in the car listening to an eclectic blend of the old and the new, the jazzy and the sublime, the sacred and the secular.

It's just pleasant, and very fulfilling, spending time doing these things together. I know it sounds sentimental, but last weekend I mentioned to her how much I enjoyed our time together. This weekend, she spoke simply, and yet directly, "I'm glad we have you with us this year."

Yes, despite the roller coaster ride, despite the emotional uncertainty, despite the continuing side effects of chemotherapy, I am here and with the ones I love.

It's almost Christmas. This year, it won't be a cancer Christmas. It will be a cancer-free Christmas, a time of hope, a measure of peace. I'm glad we have the stories of Christmas. I'm glad we have each other and I'm glad we have more time together.

As we drove today and talked about the changes we've been through, I asked if she thought cancer would recur. Of course, she doesn't know, any more than I do, but given the test results I've had recently, it really wouldn't be that surprising if someday, somehow, we have to face that kind of news directly. But not yet, not now.

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