personal: April 2006 Archives

popping in for a moment

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still at the house my brother has been building for my gram. it's habitable but the upstairs has lots of work and the finishing touches are incomplete. kind of reminds me of us human beings and a t-shirt i once saw "please be patient, god isn't finished with me yet".
have seen my dad - he's frail, bed-bound for the most part, with almost no muscle mass to be seen. there is a hospital bed in his living room and he holds court from there. he says that he is slowly improving. he's finshied his course of hyperbaric chamber treatments and his physical wounds are slowly healing. but he still has so much wrong in his body that it's a battle to keep his medications in balance with each other. he was having fainting spells so they reduced his blood pressure medication, but that could adversely affect his kidney function etc.
my gram is stable, spends most of the day sitting in her chair reading her horse race mysteries and occasionally pottering around the house. my brother goes from room to room finishing this and that using tools that make interesting noises.
saw my eldest son last night for dinner (sushi place). he's getting ready to move closer to where he will be going to school to finish his undergraduate program. and from there, eventually, grad school. a late bloomer, like his mom.
will be having dinner tonight with a childbirth educator friend. tomorrow brunch with a couple of my siblings-in-law, and later that night on a plane to head back to my dh, who I haven't seen for 10 days. boy do i miss him. and my own bed, too, for that matter.

still on the road

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I just know that I will get back to the office and everyone will ask me "How was your vacation"? I think I will need a vacation to recover from this trip.
Many bright spots - I had the chance to meet Mimi and we spent some great time together just conversing. Her boss was gracious enough to let her leave early so that we could meet up for a couple of hours over coffee, tea, and desserts at a local to her eatery.
Let me back up a bit and run you through my itinerary so far.
Saturday 4/22 I was on my 24 hour call at the hospital. It was crazy and busy even though I didn't have a single labor patient of my own. I went to Mass Sunday morning on my way home and had the chance to hear a rarety - a homily on the benefits of the Sacrament of Reconciliation - as part of the Divine Mercy Sunday events. Went home afterwards and handled the minutiae of getting ready for a prolonged road trip. When I checked in on-line, I realized that I would be sitting in the middle seat at the very last row on the longest leg of the trip - and being already sleep deprived AND facing a 2 hour drive at the other end of my journey, I did something that I have never done before. I cashed in most of the frequent flyer miles that I had been painstakingly accumulating over the last 20 years - and bought myself an upgrade to first class. It was worth every mile that I spent. I am not one who can usually sleep on a plane, but as soon as Narnia was over I was fast asleep until nearly time to land at PDX. Let's face it, the nice fruit and cheese plate and the free drinks certainly helped a lot, too! I could really get used to flying first class.
Landed in Portland OR and picked up the rental car, drove down to Eugene to my son's where my youngest had already been hanging out for a couple of days (she not having to work and not wanting to miss any time of her school break) and somewhat incoherently crashed out on his couch. Got up early later that morning to take dear daughter to Willamette University, went on a tour, met with an admissions counselor, and left her there for the visit classes/overnight stay. Met with a midwife friend Pam and had lunch at the Coffee House Cafe. Talked about midwifery, politics of;christianity and midwifery, raising kids, staying competent, and all sorts of midwife stuff.
Then I went back to Eugene, stuck my head in at the NPR station there (but there was only one person in the office who I knew), went to Costco to buy groceries that I can't get in NH, went to Fred Meyer (ditto) and then back to my son's place. (I pack very lightly to go out to the west coast and I bring an extra suitcase to haul home the goodies). What I haven't figured out yet is how to safely bring home Pollo Loco. I am under instructions to bring home YumYum donuts and/or Western Bagel. We shall see. I am pretty close to my weight limit already.
Had dinner with both my Eugene children (the son who hosted me and his next sibling, a daughter). Went out to dinner, and daughter got carded by the waitress because, although she is nearly 24, she still doesn't look much over 14. This runs in the family - I think that my 30 something daughter still gets carded on occasion. The funny thing is that since D doesn't drive, she uses her passport as her primary ID. Took the waitress aback a little bit.
Slept a few hours and then packed up my stuff and left to pick up B at Willamette. Got on the road and drove north to the University of Puget Sound, where we were 5 minutes late for the 2 o'clock tour we had scheduled. Oh well. Sorted things out with the staff at the admissions office (who, btw, were not nearly as friendly or organized as the same staff at Willamette U.) Left B there on campus and arranged that I would be there at noon the next day to pick her up. Finalized my arrangements to meet up with Mimi( 1/2 drive south). Was finally reached by a midwife friend in Kennewick who invited me to come out there and tour her birth center. So I made a last minute change of plans and drove the 221 miles one way from Tacoma to Kennewick. Until I knew what time B would be through on campus, I couldn't really finalize things, and if she were to have been through at 0900 I wouldn't have been able to make that run. In retrospect, I wish that there had been another day in there so that I could have driven up to see my daughter in Idaho but it just didn't work out.
Left Mimi, called the friend that I had originally been planning to overnight with and let her know, and drove and drove and drove. When you look on the map you don't really realize what that drive is. Because of this feature called a mountain range, it isn't possible to drive as the crow flies. Gotta go north or south before you can go east. Drove through some truly awesome mountain country and was very glad that is wasn't winter. Got to Kennewick sometime before midnight, toured the birth center, the hospital, chatted for a few hours and went to sleep, only to be awakened because my friend had a mom in labor. So I headed back to Tacoma as the sun was rising. It was a beautiful but exhausting journey.
Stopped to see another midwife friend and barely made it in time to pick up B. Never made it to see yet another childbirth person because we couldn't make our schedules mesh.
Drove back to Portland so that B could visit with two of her cousins - one who is a few months older and the other who is a year younger than she is. Had dinner with her uncle and cousins, then drove her to the airport to catch her flight back to NH. Went back to brother-in-laws house to sleep for 4 hours before catching my own plane to Los Angeles. Never made the connection with my other brother in law or any of my Portland friends.
Got into Los Angeles yesterday AM. Saw my dad, and am staying at my grandma's house that my brother is building. Still unsure as to the rest of my intinerary here, but will probably see my elder son tonight.

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This page is a archive of entries in the personal category from April 2006.

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