The excitement for today was SNOW! I write it that way because I am sure that's how Maggie would say it. Because the nearest entrance is four plowed blocks away, we drove and when I opened the car up, who should be there, but Maggie's dogwalker (a.k.a. the dog-goddess), Barbara. She had three of Maggie's pals with her and it took Maggie a few minutes to decide if she wanted to ski with me or go home with Barbara. Finally, she decided that she would come with me, but she was really considering her options. We went for a 3 mile ski which was far more successful than the last one (glide, clomp) as it only involved a couple of icy snow build ups on the ski. This time it would just happen randomly and suddenly one leg or the other would not glide and I would almost do the splits as the other leg and the rest of my body continued on. I managed not to land in the snow only by extreme luck.
Other excitement for today included coffee with Patrick, lots of journal reading and a visit to the ice cream store.
My taste for sweets has partially returned, partially in both depth and breadth. I do not like sweet things as much as I used to and I like a much smaller range of sweet things. That said, after a skiing adventure, a scoop of ice cream seemed just the thing. Pre-leukemia, I went to Stillwell's a couple of times a week, but after-leukemia, I have been fewer than five times. I started going soon after they opened and the owners were the only employees. As frequent customers, we got to know them a bit. They've been doing really well, opened another store, hired lots of employees and are now only intermittently in the store. I've seen the husband of the couple and had a couple of conversations with him, but he did not mention the hair. I saw Arielle today for the first time in about eight months and she commented immediately on how nice it looked. Someday, I'll just say "thank you" and we'll talk about how easy it is and then the conversation will move on, but I'm not there yet. Now, I tell I know people the whole story. I think the more times I tell it, the more it will just become a narrative, embedded in my life story the same way and with no more emotion than "and then we moved from Minnesota." Arielle had been having a not very good day, involving the annoyances of life that can add up: a wet shoe, a broken hinge, unhappy children and said thinking about the suddenness, the unexpectedness of a diagnosis like leukemia in addition to how well I was doing, made her view her morning differently. I was glad to help.
A reasonable question might be to ask if I view those annoyances any differently now that I've been through a life-threatening illness. I'm not sure, but I don't think so. My response to a collection of minor calamities is usually to laugh at how obnoxious they all are and how they're piled up. I usually just tell everyone in sight about my traffic jam of nuisances and that works wonders. What I do notice is different, is that I am somewhat more likely to think about what I'm doing with my time. I am a little less likely to goof around on the internet without considering my options. I may be almost as likely to actually play sudoku, but to have my brain consider if this is really what I want to be doing seems like progress in conscious living.
For me, for tomorrow, I hope for continued progress in paying attention. For you, I will wish the level of attention that is ideal for you.