The string of letters was broken last week for the first time in I don’t know how long. A long, long time. It was chalked up to equipment malfunction but it was probably closer to ‘operator error’ in that I moved my office to the house and I couldn’t quite figure out the new printer. But that’s been cleared up and the presses are rolling again. Ellen was first to pick up on the lull in mailbox activity with a quick text “No letter?” so I guess there is some assurance that you don’t know what you’ve got until it’s gone.
The lapse gave me some time to think about the unfolding details of a new development for Felicia. The kids have both known about her melanoma for a week or so, but the details and scope of the issue weren’t yet fully known. They are now and we’re ready to move ahead.
June 1, 2011
Ellen/Reid: I’m up on the third floor of the townhome this morning, typing away in my new home office. Although it is in theory an ‘office’, your grandmother’s old twin bed is nearby and I have to fight the urge to lie down for a moment to rest my eyes. I’m officially a MyWorker. That’s bank parlance for someone who works from home or a satellite office. I’ll work from home three days a week and make the reasonable drive to one of the outlying offices the other two days. There’s only one other person in town who is on my ‘team’ and I’ll see her often enough. There was no earthly reason for me to drive the half hour each way, plus the parking space and other expenses. As it turns out, I actually start the day much earlier – about 6:30 – than I might otherwise. A guy could get used to working in shorts and a t-shirt. I wasn’t able to write last week because the printer was on the fritz. The string of letters was broken by a technical malfunction, to quote Janet Jackson. You probably didn’t miss much.
Today Felicia goes to her surgeon to find out what must be done to eradicate the melanoma which is on her left calf. It was discovered a few weeks ago during a routine examination, and it was determined to not be very deep (which is how they measure those things) and that is a good thing. She’s an outdoors person but had also frequented tanning booths (which she stopped going to last year) but the damage was done. She’s shown the patience of Job in not riding her doctors to get her taken care of sooner. That the disease had not shown signs of progression probably influenced their decision to make her wait for a few weeks, but it would’ve driven me totally nuts. We’re not sure when the surgery is scheduled – we will find out today – and they will likely carve out a chunk of her leg to make sure the beast is eliminated. I’ll be with her when she goes through that, just as she was with me in February. She’s been a trouper through all of this. It reminds me of your uncle’s situation, which is going on 10 years now in terms of a clean bill of health. He had a significant melanoma taken off of his left arm, and even now he goes through an examination every three months just to keep on top of things. I can’t recall if he underwent any chemo or radiation but the lesson here is that you guys ought to make sure a regular dermatology exam is on your medical radar screens. I say that at the very moment my face is peeling from broiling in the sun this past weekend on the golf course and the bike even though sunscreen was applied and re-applied. There’s probably more to protection than wearing hats and lotions. Since this runs in the family, please make sure you get checked out at least once a year. That’s why you have insurance.
Had a brief scare last week on my situation that had me hustle back into the doctor’s office for a few hours but all is well. Just part of the healing process, so there’s not much else to report on that score.
Not much new on your grandmother’s situation. Still in Wood River, still getting by. Her health seems to have evened out as of late although it appears she will make the move to a Veteran’s Administration facility because it’s simply less expensive.
My workouts to get ready for the Bridger have started. After a couple of minutes on the elliptical machine, it became very clear that whatever was gained over the years has been completely lost. It means essentially starting over from scratch, but there are about 7 weeks for me to try to regain some level of fitness. We arrive in Jackson Hole on Thursday, July 21 and head back to Charlotte on July 28th, if memory serves me correctly. Lots of planning to get down before the trip goes down.
Okay, guys, have a good start to your summers, stay in touch (that means you, Reid) and wear your sunscreen. Hope to see you sooner than later. Keep your Thanksgiving plans open.