Thursday, February 21, 2008


Good morning, dear friends and gentle people,
I have woken up with the most Godawful case of vertigo. When I move, it is a toss-up between falling over and barfing. Sitting still is a very good thing, so that is what I am doing, with  Bella on my lap.  We have a call in to Dr. Aaberg, to get his take on this new revoltin' development,  and also maybe to get the results of the path report from the surgery.  In the meantime, we have watched American Idol--the Girls--and are consuming chocolate provided by my dear thoughtful
Markamenta.  I hope that we will get caught up on posting today-getting those photos downloaded and on to the blogsite.
Continued healing very evident as I look at my new/old eye. It is astounding how this manufactured sphere-thingie has become, at least to my senses, and integral part of my body. It moves in concert with my right eye. It basically feels like my eye has an owie. When I look in the mirror, I see that my eyelid is beginning to open a little--maybe about 25% open. My "clear conformer", as my shape-holding contact thingawhatzus is called, is shiny, and the tissue/orb behind it is a soft pink color, giving me a kind of 28 Days Later, I-got-the-virus look on one side. The colors continue to flourish down my cheek--predominantly cranberry and chartreuse today. 
Let me tell you about tears! The ones that come out of my left eye sort of shoot out of my tear duct rather than pooling around first.  My eye waters quite a bit when I get tired. However, the pain is all but gone and I don't need even Tylenol anymore.
Thank you Judith for the Cream of Asparagus soup and the lovely card and thoughts. I walked into the Holland Area Arts Council yesterday to see my students' artwork displayed upstairs--and may I say how proud I am of my students- and immediately saw our Lorma, then Tinina and Andrew (could you be more adorable, Andrew?) and it felt so good to be out in the world feeling like myself again, not diminshed, not handicapped, not a victim of anything--oh, not at all. May I know how that feels every day.
Some of you know that in November, I went to an AA meditation retreat with Buddhist Kevin Griffin, who is a recovering alcoholic himself and has written a book called, ONE BREATH AT A TIME: BUDDHISM AND THE TWELVE STEPS ( see earlier posts for more about that...) Anyway, I am in touch with several of the recovering people from that magical weekend, including Steve Colf from his Come to Believe Ranch in California. While I was there, we had a meeting, and he shared his experience with beating cancer through his spiritual practice and visualization. He inspired me so much, and now, I am able to ask him for his help.  This is how life works, folks, and the only thing that stops it is our own fear. If you are in recovery and are interested in broadening your understanding of the steps, I recommend Kevin's book. He is a holy man.
Send your positive energy to my substitute teacher, Ken Newton, who is a delightful, funny person. I know that my students at Waukazoo are getting the love and care they deserve from him and are being inspired to make more great art.
Also, please give Carolyn Gundrum a large hug for me. She has been working tirelessly to educate my kids about this experience and help them walk through it with me without misconceptions and fear.  This is a very scary thing for children to contemplate. I remember my Annie having nightmares about amputation after seeing a little girl who lost a leg.  I believe that the answer is in education. Kids can handle the truth if it is presented kindly and age-appropriately, and that is what my friend Carolyn--as well as Bobbi in the music room-are doing for them.  I have a huge shopping bag that is literally full of books, cards, drawings and letters from my kids, and it is absolutely my favorite thing to do to look through them. They warm my heart and help me heal.  
more later--love to you all....

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