The dogs are relentless and consistent in their disrespect of weekends and holidays. Saturday was no exception. I got up, fed them, and was making the tall coffee + double espresso + steamed milk whenChris wandered downstairs. We drank coffee, surfed the ‘Net, made breakfast. We got out before 9 and it was already oppressively hot. Beau decided it was too hot for a long walk. We didn’t disagree.

We ran errands and decided to see a movie mid-afternoon. The theater has changed its seats into the recliner versions (wine & beer, please) and the afternoon had undesirable seats available. We decided to see a later show and got better seats. The 2nd “Guardians of the Galaxy” was fun, funny, and with our senior discount, worth it.

In the background runs the internal dialog of what our son and his GF are doing: Is he icing enough? Is he getting enough help? (Anastasia made sure that people were over on Thursday and Friday to cook Colin meals and help him out. He’s sore and ice is his new bestie. They have a wide social network and their friends are stepping up. It’s a wonderful thing.  I cannot turn off that mother mode, I can only modify it. So far, so good.

We hope they’re up for visiting us of Father’s Day, and if they aren’t, we get it. If they are, even better. I’ll never pass up a chance to spend time with my family,; most of who I am is defined by my family. I cannot imagine life without them. I hope I never have to.

And Meave and

Kas and family and friends with whom I’ve shared this abrupt turn in our journey  have stepped up with so much helpful information, sharing good thoughts, prayers, etc., keeping Colin and his cancer top-of-mind. We all have friends who have friends/knowledge that we do not; asking for help has yielded many responses, so much information, and inclusions in prayer chains and similar responses. My heart overflows with how much love has been sent his way.

We’ll adjust to this new reality and be fine. Despite the initial shock, we will survive.

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A Mother’s Lament

Funny how you can blow your little problems into big ones, and deal with them as BFDs, which they really aren’t, until your kid is dealt an awful, unfair, fatal blow, and suddenly you’re jerked back into a reality that’s only partially yours. And then you realize just how petty and small-thinking you’ve been.

Our son noticed some pain & swelling in one of his testicles and went, urged by his girlfriend, to Urgent Care. (Sidebar: he doesn’t have insurance. I know, I know.) He was referred to a urologist, who sent him for an ultrasound, and told him Tuesday that he had to have surgery on Wednesday. Four days. And we just were informed on Tuesday.

So we braved I80 commuter traffic to pick him up and deliver him to the hospital. We waited…and waited…and waited. We read books (he read a Wine Atlas as he’s preparing for his Level 1 Sommelier exam). Finally the nurse came and things began to feel real.

No more books once he had his I.V. inserted. T here was no more reading, except of one another’s faces, moods, thoughts. My boy is like his dad, he keeps things close to his chest, until he feels that his audience is receptive and non-judging, then he opens up.

The surgery nurse came, and we gathered up his stuff and our stuff, rode the elevator to the surgery level, and away he went. We went to the cafeteria and had lunch. Then, while my husband read, I paced the floor, the hall, fielded texts from C’s GF and my clients who are closing on a house tomorrow, my family, etc. The occasional phone call. Climbed stairs. It was barely an hour and I had to move.

The doctor noted the C handled the surgery well. His left testicle is history; pathology in 7-10 days. He’ll get a CT scan of his body from shoulders to groin. That, and the pathology, will give him and his doctor a path to pursue.

Meanwhile, as a parent, a mother, very attached with her children, this is the WORST. I know it’s worse for him and his GF, as they have live with this. I’m sure he’ll kick cancer’s ass, but there’s a small kernel of doubt that wants me to go to the place of “he’s going to die.” But of course. As do we all. Will this be it? I think not.

I kind of want to prepare for the worst and hope for the best. When my husband or I are involved, it’s a fairly easy thing to compartmentalize that. But with our kids? For whom we want the best? Oh, not so much. I’m all mother bear then.

A part of me is hyper-alert, and I hope that serves our son and his GF at this challenging time. I hate that I can’t be the one to advocate for him. I hope he steps up on the insurance front. No matter, we’re here as his advocate for him.

I’m sure this will end well, and my inner mama bear is ready to roar.

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The New Tandem

We decided we’d ride the Cycle for Sight charity rid for our new tandem shake-out ride. Doris is ready to tattoo her initials on the bike to ensure her place as First Wheelsucker. We had plenty of flat riding to play with the electronic shifting, which was new to Chris, before we hit the climbs and fast descents. We hit 43 + on our descent of Pope Valley and 128; it was so fun! We enjoyed the ride so much, and are eagerly anticipating many more fun rides.

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Mother’s Day

We called my MIL, I received texts and emojis from my kids, my SIL (who with her husband are spending a week with us) had calls from her sons. My husband brought me coffee before I even woke up, then made pecan pie Belgian waffles for breakfast. Woof. Stuffed.

And yet we stopped at the Cowgirl Creamery and tasted about 5 cheeses they make, purchased some, for consumption over the next couple of days. They were good!

We’ve been having a high old time with my in-laws; we even got her onto our brand-spanking-new tandem bike (despite my requests, no one has told me how to post photos, so you can see them on Facebook, and I apologize for that. Help!). Having visitors reminds us  of how much there is to do and see in NorCal.

Color me fulfilled.

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Change Is The Only Constant

My friend and broker, M, made some major changes to her business, and what affected me the most was her plan to spend a year (or more) in Europe. I’m all over that; we’re planning some trips to Europe with our new tandem this year and as many years as we can manage. But I wasn’t prepared to change brokers (she doesn’t want to manage agents half a world away, and I totally get that), and interviewing new brokers was very much an energy suck. I was turned down twice in 5 interviews (one broker doesn’t have room; the other didn’t care for my politics. Imagine that!) I joined with a drama-free, top-producing broker who was just voted the local Realtor of the Year. What a pleasant surprise, and kind of an affirmation that I made the right choice. I knew that I’d made the right choice for other reasons. I have no aspirations to be a top producer, and I appreciate that both my past broker and current broker recognize that and embrace me anyway. I require balance in my life; I believe this move will reinforce that.

I was with my past broker 3-½ yrs., and in her building nearly 11 years. I miss it. And I’m stoked about my new broker and office, and the culture they’ve created. I hope to contribute and move forward my new culture and environment, as well as kick-start my business in a big way.

And tomorrow will be sunny, so I plan to ride my bike up to the dam, and see the Glory Hold overflowing, and enjoy late winter in NorCal. I love this place, and this place I am in my career.


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Like a Marvin Gaye Song

What’s going on?

From my bubble on the Left Coast it seems as though the country is experiencing unprecedented turmoil and discord. The first time I dealt with a president who was dishonest and criminal was in 72-73, and I remember being in a friend’s apartment in Beatrice, NE, watching Nixon delivering his resignation. I was floored. I was never his fan (campaigned for McGovern, the first year I voted. I’m proud to say I’ve voted every chance I had. I did have regrets, sometimes).

So now we have a new administration and a different reality in the White House than ever before. I’m nervous, concerned, worried that the tumult is distracting people from the real issues. Aside from participating in a peaceful march in January (with my husband and the husband-half of good friends of ours) I’ve felt rather helpless in expressing my views and hoping that our elected officials do the right (aka, progressive) thing. I’ve donated to PP, as they were significant help to me as a young, broke, single woman, as well as a young, broke couple. To defund them, IMNTBHO, is criminal — they do so much for so many, with abortion being a tiny fraction and non-government funded.

I don’t know where the country is going, or how it’s going to end, but I’m committed to keeping progress moving forward: LGBTQ rights, women’s rights, equal rights for all, health care for all. I have no interest in plunging society back into the ’60s or earlier. No race, creed, religion, political party should face discrimination. The human race is equal.

That the highest office in the land deems otherwise is chilling. Pay attention, people.

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A Sodden January

We’re so wet! I forgot how NorCal springs to life with exceptional rain, and we’ve certainly had that. I feel for those folks along the Russian River (among other waterways) who have flooded; you had a 10 year hiatus, and I hope all are reimbursed for their losses).  There has been epic snow — 20′ at Lake Tahoe — and epic rain, and it’s so needed and so welcome.

As a result, along with work/taking down Christmas/nursing injuries, my workout schedule has taken a back seat. I’m interviewing brokers, as my current broker who I love to the moon and back is semi-retiring. I walk the dogs every morning that isn’t rainy, except for yesterday, when I decided to give them a day off (so I could ride my bike). Over a number of weeks I found I have 2 very small tears in my right knee’s meniscus; not enough damage to warrant surgery, but enough to make my knee inflame after a run or hard bike ride. WTH is happening? I’ve spent 30+ years helping people to become physically healthy, and now I need guidance to navigate this physical stuff. So there are the distractions, and they must be addressed. It seems that the physical stuff calls for more attention that I’d like to give it, yet if I don’t, I can’t do the rest of my life.

And then there’s what’s happening with our new administration. I protested in the early 70s, burned a bra (hell, yeah, and I still wear them, so there’s that irony), campaigned for McGovern, voted for him in my first time ever to vote, and joined SDS in 1972 in a march (in Philly), so showing up with Chris and our good friend Jim (who has more protesting experience than both of us) at the Sacramento Women’s March on the 21st was a natural thing. I need to blog that as a stand-alone. It was amazing. Peaceful, warm, friendly, inclusive, powerful and family-friendly. I was impressed at how many people showed up, and how there was NO VIOLENCE at all. Wow. Not at all like my past experiences.

We were walking back to our vehicle, mostly silent, digesting what we’d just done. In the infrequent observation we agreed at how that march affected us. I felt a huge sense of pride that we’d shown up and supported our beliefs in a peaceful way.

We marched to the Capital and turned left, and walked back to the car. We were really impressed and humbled at what just happened. We were so awed by what we did, and what continued as we left. We have a voice. We need to use it. If you believe in something, show up and support it. If you don’t support something, show up in protest. It is your civic duty.

However your beliefs lead you, show up and support or protest. If you take no action, you might as well stay in bed. By not voicing your opinion you’re tacitly agreeing with what you don’t agree with.

RIP, Mary Tyler Moore (s0b) and Mike Connors. The world is less without you.

The world is more with those of you who speak out. I hope to see you soon.

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