__________December 03, 2015__________

Bad News & Beer

Here’s a story for you…

Yesterday, my PhD pen-pal was telling me about how he’s a beer snob, and how this one brand – Rolling Rock – is the best tasting of the cheapy beers.  I’d never heard of that brand of beer, before – we don’t buy the stuff for home, often.  Brian likes a beer, occasionally, though… and I did a search – the store I have to go to tonight carries it.  I wonder what he’d think if I bought him some, to see what he thinks?  Beer is so rare a purchase in our house, I’m sure his brow would rise, but he’d like it – and he doesn’t admit much, but he likes to be surprised.  And I keep him hopping – there’s no rhyme or reason to what I bring home.  Could be fun!  🙂

Tuesday I brought home maple flavored cookies that were AMAZING – from a little 5 & 10¢ store my grandma always took me to when I was a little girl.  (I had to take the kids through it.  It’s… unlike any other store on earth.  The smells, the merchandise, the memories…!  They’re just THICK, there.)  And they had my garlic shavings… and I impulsively got the cookies.  It was a good buy – everyone was taken aback by how good they were.  Even I hadn’t expected!  Anyhow, so I’m now thinking that I’m going to do this – buy beer for Brian.  Could be fun!

Got bad news, last night.  Cal wrote – his cardiology evaluation didn’t go well, at all.  Here’s what he said:

“I had my evaluation for bypass on Monday.  I went in for a calcium core scan and a heart specific CT scan.  The news is not good.  I have severe blockage in all four arteries.  Originally they thought is was 75%, decreasing with the roto rooter chemical treatment.  As it turns out, I have nearly 90% blockage in two arteries and 75% in the other two.  To add insult to injury, I have a heart valve that is not working properly.  What one doctor said was “basically you should be dead”  Humph, some bedside manner, him.  Anyway, what the plan is right now is to go in to do a trans-catheter aortic valve replacement.  Then they can go in to do a bypass.  As I understand it, I am not a candidate for bypass surgery until I have the valve repaired or replaced.  I am on a list for the procedure, which may be a month or more.  There are few cardiac surgeons who do this kind of surgery on geriatric patients.  So, there we are.  I am going to be down for the count for about 5 days after this procedure.  Then, within a month, if all goes well with that procedure, I will go in for bypass surgery.  I am being evaluated for what is called “keyhole” bypass procedure.  This involves small incisions in the chest through which they remove and reattach sections of the arteries.  If my blockage is localized enough, they will be able to avoid cracking my chest and have a recovery time of a few weeks rather than a few months. Regardless, I am going to be incommunicado for an extended period of time starting next month probably.  Until then, I am not able to do much of anything.”

HATE this news.  This wasn’t supposed to happen.  And he’s such a good guy, y’know?  He has so many amazing stories, and… am I selfish to want him to be around to tell me a LOT more of them?  I can’t even imagine how his wife is feeling.  And worse, he’s on a WAITING list for all of this.  He’s had two ‘episodes’ in the past three weeks, and they’re saying a month or more until he can have the valve repaired – that’s not including the bypass to deal with the blockages that are causing the ‘episodes’.  HomiGOSH…!  I know he’s seriously freaked out and afraid.  He had a friend who died on the table having a heart procedure, too, so that doesn’t help, either.  HATE this.  Can’t even begin to think what’s going thru his head, right now.  He insists that I *HAVE* to keep writing, since he’s stuck and needs the distraction of my crazy e-mails to lift his spirits (well… he’s not so wordy about it, but that’s the gist.).

I am SO praying for this whole horrible thing.  But the problem is… well, I’m a ‘Thy will be done’ kind of pray-er.  I don’t like asking for things, because… what if what I’m asking for isn’t what Yehovah wants to have happen?  That’d put me out of His will, and make me selfish, wouldn’t it?  On the other hand, I’m feeling VERY selfish about Cal, at the moment.


I got invited to my first Hanukkah open house.  I’m friends with a woman… okay, I’ll be honest.  She’s in the local homeschool group, and she’s Messianic (similar to what I am).  When she found out we share similar beliefs – coming out of Christianity – she friended me and tried to get close.  I… don’t get close.  But we’re ‘friends’ on FB, and we’ve had a few conversations.  We even went on a field trip together, but when I saw her, I kind of turned around and went the other way.  She makes me nervous, like there’s an expectation or agenda.  She’s Messianic.  It’s just hard to explain, except to say she brings out feelings of leeriness.  Anyhow, she’s invited me to her open house on Sunday.  And y’know what?  I’m thinking of stopping in.  Turns out, she lives two blocks from the pool.  Anyhow, if we’re FB friends, and we’re both celebrating Hanukkah… shouldn’t I at least go and wish her ‘Chag Sameach’ and be a little friendly…ish?  More than I have been?  I don’t know – she might be a nice lady.  Anyhow, in spite of my stand-offish-ness, I’m thinking I might go.  It feels HUGE, and I don’t know why.  Probably because that’s reaching out, and it’s not something that happens regularly.  But it’d only be for a few minutes, right?

We got our outside decorations up, last night – the kids and I.  I was actually waiting for my guy, but after a week and a half of that, I decided to just do it.  He came and helped unscrew-up the parts I had all wonky (don’t ask), and laughed at my hack job on parts of it.  It’s not much – two snowflakes and a string of green lights, but it’s pretty from the road (I hope!  We’ll see, tonight!).  Less can be more.  And trust me – it’s enough for me to do, with five semi-crazy children trying to help!

Then it was inside to cut hair.  With five guys in the house, you know we don’t go to a barber.  Let’s just hope the ‘hair shock’ wears off by the time we have to get pictures done, because …*Isaac*…!!!!

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