It has been two weeks since I have updated this blog, and I apologize for the hiatus. I ask myself why I have waited so long to send a new post. Today I drove to the Farber to attend the last session of the Writing Workshop for this academic year. As usual, it was a wonderful and enriching experience. Each of the attendees is either a cancer patient, survivor, or caregiver, and we have developed a strong confidential rapport amongst ourselves. It's a place where we can express ourselves freely, both verbally and in writing.
Amy had a new challenge for us today, which had to do with interrupting one's writing for whatever reason. It really hit home. She gave us a prompt based on a poem by Tess Gallagher, who had recently lost her husband, the writer Raymond Carver. Here it is:
I Stop Writing the Poem
to fold the clothes. No matter who lives
or who dies. I'm still a woman.
I'll always have plenty to do.
I bring the arms of his shirt
together. Nothing can stop
our tenderness. I'll get back
to the poem. I'll get back to being
a woman. But for now
there's a shirt, a giant shirt
in my hand, and somewhere a small girl
standing next to her mother
watching to see how it's done.
Of course, there is an oxymoron here...she stopped writing the poem in order to write a poem?
At the class, we were challenged to use the first line of this poem to write about something that we stopped doing for some reason in order to do something else for us to explain. She gave us all 10 minutes to create something. Everyone came up with an amazing response. I can't believe how creative people can be with such a short time to respond. As for myself, here is what I wrote:
I Stop Writing the Blog
to finalize the sale of our home. I sit on the
back deck with the bittersweet feeling of both
relief and sadness. I reminisce about all the beautiful
sunsets I've watched, the family and friend visits we've
hosted, and the many memories of these last ten years here.
I rush to finish fixing up what needs to be fixed, and now we
search for a new down-sized place to live, knowing that
it won't compare to what we are leaving behind. I'll get
back to writing my blog. But for now, I am overwhelmed
with this major passage in my life.
When I read this to the class, someone suggested that this could in fact be my next blog post. So here is another oxymoron. My excuse for not updating my blog becomes the update to my blog! No wonder I love this workshop! Too bad I have to wait until September for the next meeting.
Tomorrow I head back to the Farber for my monthly checkup and Zometa infusion. I also have an appointment with Dr. Jean Marie Connors, a benign hematologist, to check whether my continued anemia might be related to something other than my MM. This is just a cautionary appointment, but I'm glad that Dr. Richardson has reached out for another opinion.
I do have some other myeloma-related items to share from the recent ASCO Conference and
some recent Farber MM research, but I'll save those for another post. It's all good!