Monday, August 17, 2009

I really am the worst kind of snob...

...Since Friday, I have been here. I have concluded, I don't belong here. I imagine, however, this is largely the mantra of everyone here. Who wants to be here? Away from their families. Away from friends. Secluded. Sequestered from the outside world. Some are sicker than others. I am the least sick of all. Maybe. I'm sure everyone else feels that way too. This is a world where everyone is sick and no one is sick. How funny. The idea of recuperation is somewhat of a joke. All of us here in limbo. Not sick, but not well. No privacy. A shell and shadow of life before.

What will I take away from this? A small distrust of doctors. Sad, but true. I put myself wholly into someone else's hands and this is what I've come away with. Three days in bed and no discernible 'recovery.' I never do that and perhaps this is why. Closeness does not come easily. Perhaps this is why. I can do it on my own and this is why.

They serve pudding with lunch and have a drawer with an endless supply of graham crackers. Maybe its not so bad after all.

Friday, August 14, 2009

MamaKat's Writing Prompt 8.12.09

3.) Describe one of your 'G-d Moments'.

It's hard to describe just one moment in particular. G-d and I have often travelled a bumpy road. I have the extremely bad habit of needing a scapegoat when things go poorly in my life and G-d is there. He is omnipresent and loving and all powerful. How can he allow such pain and unhappiness in the world? In my life?

I went to Israel in January of 2007. I was excited about the trip and while it was a religious trip, I think, at the time, I was more excited about being able to travel. I love to travel. I boarded the flight and squeezed into the cattle car seating in coach. I love to fly, but something about the flight just felt different. As we were boarding there were huge celebrations taking place as a large group of people were making Aliyah. They were making the giant leap of faith of moving to Israel---a land of uncertainty--from the relatively safe confine of the United States. I was in awe of them. At the time, I thought there was no way I could make that sort of leap. As it was, I had parents and friends and family worried sick I was even traveling to Israel as a tourist. It had only been six tense months since the ceasefire with Lebanon and I would spend part of my trip traveling in the Golan Heights on the boarder with Lebanon and Syria....not Israel's greatest friends.

As we made our way across the Atlantic, I found myself too excited to sleep. Israel. The Promised Land. The Holy Land. I secretly prayed with the men that gathered at the rear of the airplane as the sun set. (They were Orthodox Jews and men and women do not pray together...) I prayed for a safe trip. I prayed for my family. I prayed for the future of Israel. I prayed for a safe landing.

The beautiful thing about Israel is that G-d is almost palpable. I have never been to a place where just being makes me feel so close to G-d. It is the most amazing feeling. It is consuming. For someone who's relationship with G-d has always been a little dramatic, I was so thankful and so in awe. The feeling is indescribable.

While I was in Israel, I visited the Kotel. (The Western Wall, The Wailing Wall) Tradition is to place a prayer on a piece of paper and place in the cracks of the Wall. Inexplicably, as I had never even considered a family a possibility, I prayed for John and I to have a family and I placed my prayer in the wall. The feeling of confusion as to why I would do that stayed with me well after the trip.

I love my relationship with G-d, despite its ups and downs. July 2, 2008. The day that changed my life forever. I found out I was pregnant with Sadie. She is my G-d moment every day. She is amazing and prefect and wonderful. When I look at her, for a brief moment I am back at the Kotel praying for her presence in my life. I thank G-d for her.

My G-d moment is a series of beautiful moments. Whenever John embraces me. Whenever Sadie smiles. I am in awe of how incredibly lucky I am.

Monday, August 10, 2009

To boldly go where we've never gone before....

....CAMPING *SOLO* in our new (to us!) camper! :)

Friday July 31, 2009: In spite of myself I woke up fairly early (for me on a Friday) and was out the door with John and Sadie by 9am to go with John to get a haircut. As it turned out I was absolutely exhausted and had Jacqueline also wash my hair as a treat for me (it's my favorite part!) and a little pick-me-up as I anticipated a long day. After our little hair adventure, we made a stop at an electrical supply store (for John's work) and continued on to stock up on provisions for the weekend camping trip. The shopping was surprisingly difficult. This was the first time John and I were camping on our own....and we were camper camping to boot! We piled in all the necessities: chocolate, graham crackers and marshmallows....and we got some food too and then headed home to pack everything up....which I am determined to get better at...I packed everything but the kitchen sink! Did I really need 6 books for a two night trip? Evidently not. How many pairs of underwear did I think I would be needing?!? I could have outfitted the entire forest. Needless to say, as much as came back dirty came back clean...and then some!

We arrived at Occoneechee State Park in Clarksville, VA around 2:30pm or so. We hadn't made a reservation because we wanted to make SURE we would be able to go, but we had been keeping an eye on them throughout the week and were fairly confident we wouldn't have a problem getting a site with electric and water hookups. Not a problem, we chose site C7. Nice and private and woodsy. Problem? FIVE DOLLARS PER PET PER NIGHT! HA! No more Occoneechee State Park for us!

Then the rain poured. And poured. And poured. Now, ordinarily, this wouldn't be a problem. We had managed to get nearly everything set up. The awning was out, the windows were closed and the A/C was on. We had a primo site almost at the top of the hill. What could I possibly find to bitch about, you ask? Our primo, hilltop site? Apparently prone to flooding. Awesome. What can we do? Nothing. We hunkered down inside and enjoyed our first meal in the camper. HOT DOGS! The problem with cooking in the camper? No cooking utensils. Of any kind. And a funny thing about plastic utensils? They melt. Quickly. We served our plastic laced hot dogs with cold salads from the Walmart deli. John had picked up a particularly yummy Broccoli Salad which was discovered on Saturday night to have bacon in it. Awesome. Oh well.

After our dinner (still raining!), we watched Hancock on my computer DVD player. (Not exactly roughing it are we?!?) Then to bed early. Even Sadie was exhausted from the day. Kaiser and Kizmet waited patiently for us to go to sleep and then hopped up on the sofa. So much for no pets on the furniture without it being covered. :)

My unlit Shabbos candles...rain, rain, rain...

Saturday August 1, 2009: A new day, a new month. Up and around at a respectable hour. No lounging in bed for us! Let's have some breakfa--SHIT. I didn't pack anything for breakfast. Seriously. The most important meal of the day and I just blow it off. You know why? I've never been camping when someone else wasn't going to be making breakfast. I can't believe it. So what do the Wills's do when the going gets tough? The tough go to Hardees for breakfast biscuits! YUM! John had a bacon, egg and cheese biscuit with homefries and a GIANT coffee with like 16 sugars and creams in it and I had a chicken biscuit with orange juice. The dogs ate my homefries. It's camping. They should be allowed a vacation too!

Off to Food Lion to pick up things I forgot. Things such as charcoal, lighter fluid, cooking spray, breakfast foods, coffee, sugar and hamburger buns. You know. Camping essentials. Duh. $60 later (and still without any cooking utensils--though I wouldn't discover this until I go to make breakfast in the morning...) we're headed back to the gas station to get some gas and a bag of ice for the drink cooler. I run in to get the ice and come back out with three different newspapers. Ice? Yeah, back inside to get the ice. At least John got the gas.

The remainder of the day was spent at leisure. I did some reading and some sleeping. Sadie did some sleeping and some playing and John did some picture taking, some fire poking and some campery-type things. It was fantastic. I turned off my cell phone and turned up the A/C. The problem we did run across in the camper is that I like my air conditioning set somewhere between "walk-in-freezer" and "Arctic." When it's at least 90 degrees outside, this type of temperature swing leaves electronics such as iPods, computers, GPS, and cameras with oodles of potentially damaging condensation. OoPs.

What a cute little face!!!

See? Condensation. Boo.

Dinner were steaks and baked potatoes cooked over charcoal. Sadie had her first bites of potatoes. Not wild about them, but I imagine they were pretty bland without butter, salt and sour cream. I don't blame her one bit for spitting them out. Dessert was S'MORES! That's reason enough to camp. :)

Reading (I was reading The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie. John was reading the Craftsman tool catalog) and listening to the BBC Proms on the XM radio before bedtime. A great, relaxing day.

Sunday August 2, 2009: Rain, rain go away. BREAKFAST!!! The plan was eggs for John and I and sausage for John. Again, do you know what happens when all you have is plastic flatware with with too cook over a hot gas stove? Melted plastic. Good times. Yummy plastic laced scrambled eggs and some soggy sausage. Fantastic Samantha. Well done. The only thing done well was the coffee in the French Press. At least John go to enjoy his coffee!

In perfect Wills camping tradition, it rained on pack-up day. No biggie. Margaritaville on the XM, shove everything into the camper and worry about it when it dries up in a few days. The beauty of camper camping and being not too far from home! The problem with that is that I actually LIKE packing things away properly. I like organization. I dislike chaos and chaos is what the packing up process feels like to me. Ugh. Anyway, I got part way through it and then, as the rain got stronger, things got shoved in and I was to sort it out later. I disliked this exceedingly.

I was exceptionally sad to see the weekend end. :( I wasn't ready to go back to work and home and doctors and medicine and all that jazz. Spent the rest of the evening unpacking and doing laundry and then repacking it in the camper. Sheets, towels, blankets, kitchen mitts....all put away somewhat properly. Ah. I can sleep now. Early to bed. Mundane end to a relaxing weekend, but we were thankful for the weekend all the same and are ready to go again soon. With breakfast AND camping utensils packed and ready to be deployed!!!!!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

MamaKat's Writing Prompt 8.6.2009 *Updated*

*1.) What's ailing you? Diagnose yourself with a syndrome.*

Obsessive WebMD Symptom Syndrome.

I think there is something you should know. I have had virtually every disease known to man. Most of them are fatal. I know. You will miss me. I will miss you too. In fact, I'd bet I'd be able to diagnose myself with Obsessive WebMD Symptom Syndrome using WebMD. Their symptom checker has allowed me to prepare for my impending death several times. Runny nose, watery eyes, swollen lymphnodes? The common cold? Certainly not! Brain cancer. Pain in my shoulder, numbness in my hand? Perhaps a pinched nerve? Nope! I've had a stroke. Headache, nausea, light sensitivity? A migraine perhaps?? Alas, no. It's jock itch. How can I possibly get through my day knowing my promising life is coming to an abrupt and painful end?

In the end, it always turns out that my brain cancer miraculously cures itself after a week a rest and fluids. My stroke? Well, thankfully just a pop of my shoulder and the numbness disappears!! And, thank heavens, my jock itch clears up with just a couple doses of Immitrex. The aura is gone and my vomiting comes to an end.

I just can't help myself.