To sleep in our own bed. To be surrounded by our comforts. Our stuff of life.The scenery out our windows. Our furry creatures. Each a part of what makes home home.
Home is an interesting concept. I wrote before, home is where Dominic and I are together. (And where I have ziplock bags.) And yes, that is true. But home is also that place where you have everything just so. We each have a bedside lamp at home. We each have a place to rest our coffee in the morning and our water at night. We have a place for books and remotes and tech and the various bottles of prescriptions or sleep aids or painkillers.
Here is that place at our temporary home.
|The wonder of the box. Cats sit in them. I lie next to them. I brought my own lamp. A sticker marked fragile is wrapped around the corner. Indeed. So true. Glamorous living.|
We're working toward normalcy. It will take time. We know that. We talk about it. The fatigue is still a very real thing for Dom. The steroids did mask the fatigue, so now he rides the tide in and out, day by day. He's still neutropenic, which means we're still careful about the foods he eats. We have to think through things, being sure to eat safely while keeping in mind magnesium and potassium rich foods. Can I get an amen for dark chocolate? Rich in magnesium. Who knew?
I feel like I'm looking over my shoulder. I don't feel like something bad is going to happen. (It already did?) It's just after all this time of hospital stays and infusion center visits, it's a strange thing to be home and not anticipating a 5 day or 3 month stay. I can't shake it.
I know I will.
There's so much to do at home also. There was much to do before that terrible day back in June. I've spent the last several days cutting back trees and pulling weeds. The neighbor goats are delighted with branch after branch of new oak cuttings. I have been resistant to cutting back the many saplings around our house, but last year's devastating fire changed my mind about that. There is a young oak tree just outside our bedroom window on the other side of the fence separating us from the former horse field. As I came up to the tree, I noticed a shrub below had burned and the flames reached up and burned a section of the tree. My gratefulness for all the people who saved our home bubbled up again. The acknowledgement of how precarious this past year has been washed over me as it does periodically, sometimes with rhyme and reason, sometimes with none. I have exponentially experienced the fragility of life this past year, and it causes me to simultaneously hold on tighter and relax my grip.
I do believe the transition has been complicated by this experience of the fires. The final months leading up to transplant day were colored by waiting and hoping for rain, and feeling so incredibly vulnerable.
I'll likely always feel vulnerable. I'll also always feel grateful and strong and capable and cared for. Life is complicated. This past year just added some incredible facets to the prism I see the world through.
And so now, we're settling into yet another temporary rhythm. A rhythm of first 3 days in one week to the infusion center, then 2 days, and hopefully soon just one and then none. The week of 3 visits tore me up. We've had our longest vacation this weekend. We've normally been driving to Sacramento every Monday and Thursday, but this week, we don't return until Tuesday. I had four days in a row to settle. Four days that afforded me the time to work on the great outdoors and catch up on office work and watch some movies with Dom.
There's still bouts of discomfort for him. Constant little reminders of all he's been through, and all that lies ahead. We constantly hope and pray that he'll have little after effects, but it's all still a mystery how things will shake out.
We haven't been very sociable. We're still keeping pretty much to ourselves until his WBC goes up. My neighbor dropped something by while I was taking a walk last night, and I was kind of excessively sad I missed her. I almost called her back. I'm mostly an introvert, and a home body, but this has been a long haul. I could very possibly find myself enjoying small talk at this juncture.
I think it will all feel a little less transitory when summer comes. I love the winter. I love bundling up and snuggling under blankets. But I'm hoping by summer, Dominic will have his WBC back on track. I'm hoping he'll have more energy to be out and about. I'm hoping his windows of experience open wider. I think home is not just where we have our comforts but also where we feel safe to thrive. I think I'll feel more at home when Dominic can return to his camera and his rhythms of life.
We're astonished we're already here, we've already come this far. We can continue to make the slow transition and learn to thrive again.
Now, off to bed for his big day tomorrow! No more tri-fusion! No more ports in his body! A long shower without worry about getting the bandages wet is on the list of things to do tomorrow. For the first time in months, no Saran Wrap and tape. (Yep. He was like leftover veg, wrapped in kitchen plastic roll.) Tomorrow is yet another milestone of so many.