Thursday, December 23, 2010

Marsi White: A Christmas Carol

Everything was canceled this weekend, for me anyway. Soccer tournaments (rain); a birthday party (not actually canceled, I just did not go); basically all of the plans for the weekend that I had as of yesterday afternoon. I have a head cold. nothing with a fever; nothing particularly notable about it, just a head cold. But man, am I sick!

I have been fighting it all week, taking plenty of vitamins, sleeping as much as possible, the usual. And I thought I was getting better, until about 10:00 on Friday morning. When suddenly, I realized that I should be no where near my office.

However, instead of coming home and going to sleep, I began addressing our Christmas cards. Instead of adhering to our couch, I made myself busy with Christmas-type things. Around 4:00, I succumbed to my sickness. As my body relaxed, the cold hit in full force and it sucks.

Sitting here today, though, I am appreciating all that is holiday. I am enjoying our tree. I am proud that we actually mailed our Christmas cards today, hoping people like the poem that I drafted as a meager way to offer our thanks for all of the support we received this year from our friends and family. We talked about how Santa stops time. We watched a movie and a couple of Christmas cartoons. I made my girl hot chocolate and enjoyed some coffee. I drank Gatorade. Lots and lots of Gatorade.

The best part is...this year, I do not have cancer. Last year, I seem to recall that we did all the same things. However, I also recall an underlying code of stress and anxiety unmatched by anything we had known before. Exhaustion at every step. A tear around every corner. But we did it. Life went on. That was the most important gift of last Christmas season. Life went on and Christmas came. Family came. Santa came down the chimney. He traveled through the night spreading Christmas cheer that cancer could not abolish. LIFE WENT ON.

Perhaps, I am forgetting the nausea or my gray skin tone or the implicit fog that plagued my brain on Christmas day.....but looking back, none of that seems important. I am proud that we got it done for our kids.

Looking back at pictures, I am sentimental. And I think about many Christmas seasons from now when chemo will be a distant memory, when I am completely reconstructed and I think about that special Christmas as a blessing. A blessing that taught me to appreciate all Christmas's past and future. My own Christmas Carol and the ghost that was our escort was my own.

How many people get a second chance like that?

So, I am going to sit on my couch and continue to enjoy our tree. I am hoping desperately that my cold goes away very soon because Christmas is coming. Good thing that most my shopping is done.

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