I think I must be getting a bit to lackadaisical with my self protection. I woke up today with a slight sore throat and a little stuffy. Although it sounds a little over reactive I have really enjoyed the last two months of steady improvement and lack of any inclination of illness other than my semi scary labs. The fact is I have been pretty diligent about hand shaking, hugging, and hand washing if I do let my feeble attempt at a wall of no response crumble. I have found it harder and harder over the last 3 weeks to turn away peoples attempts at truly friendly touch. I had done pretty good for a while but as I feel better I find it even harder to step back from these human interactions which so many of us take for granted. I think one big learning point I have taken from this last year is how nice a simple touch can be. At the same moment I can realize how treacherous it can be also.
I doubt though that I collected some virus from a simple hand shake or even a hug. My guess is that I was really pushing my luck by volunteering to help coach soccer. I have for the last 3 weeks ended up helping out with Finn’s group of kids who are all about 4. Last week there were a couple who were a bit sniffly. Even though I immediately washed my hands these little guys are tough to avoid at that age. Finn himself is a little snotty now and it is even harder not to want to cuddle up with him at night when we read or in the middle of the night when he seems to sleep walk right into our bed.
Either way I have managed not to get a full blown cold just yet and I am crossing my fingers I don’t. I skipped taking the boys to soccer tonight so I didn’t feel so useless just sitting around and watching. Brooke didn’t mind as she hasn’t been in a while. I busied myself with a good house cleaning to see if that could alleviate further bugs. While cleaning I was nicely interrupted by a call from Luke. It was good to hear from him. He and Emily have been pretty busy lately as they are both back to full time work, moving houses in Maui, and trying to live the Hawaii life (although it seems it would be relaxing, the islands can be quite hectic when you aren’t on vacation). Luke hasn’t been surfing much after a little rib injury but he is getting back out there which I like to hear. I have to live vicariously through his surfing adventures for another 6 months or so before I might get a chance to go again. I hope I remember how to do it if I do get the chance. My guess is that I will be pretty rusty but I bet it will feel good when I get to go.
Those little moments of hope for the future are starting to come to me more lately. Despite the liver issue, anxiety over other illnesses, or the fear of Leukemia itself I find myself more frequently thinking and hoping about the future. Not that I am missing what is going on around me now (I am sitting in my living room watching a gorgeous 930 PM Alaska sunset and had a wonderful ski/nap midday). Yet, it feels so normal and reassuring to think ahead again. I do often still get stuck thinking about grander plans when the idea that I could rapidly get sick again jumps out at me like Liam trying to scare me, I know he is there but it can be overly loud and dramatic. I guess though that this fear for me is healthy and that it keeps me focused a little closer to the now and what I can actually participate in.
These thoughts though, coupled with the more open approach to friendly greetings and the family conversations have made the last few days pretty enjoyable. I think I am happy with my lack of true freaking out over my labs this week. My feeling is that these little enjoyments have made accepting the liver problems more tolerable. I can only hope that this coping with issues more mellowly can continue. I really hope I can kick this little virus and get back to that more free feeling about human touch and even back to helping corral those little kids at soccer.
Head Up, Heart Strong. I need a cure.