April 2014 Continued…:
So, exactly what would you do if you suddenly had $22,000 in your checking account?
My very first act, other than a full tank of gas, at $50.00, was to sign up for LifeLock.
Now, you may laugh, but that strikes me as a very rational act. Anybody who would try to steal my identity prior to this was going to get slapped down and slapped hard – my two credit cards were maxed out, I had about $42,000 in educational loans and no business in their right mind was going to give somebody credit using my identity, even though, I am proud to say, I still have not been late on payments – much. There has been a bit of dancing between Peter and Paul and who was yelling the loudest.
However, with $22,000 in the bank, I looked like a more likely prospect, hence LifeLock. Mind, it wasn’t going to stay there, but until I had the pleasure of spending it, I didn’t want anyone else to. A bit like Macauley, the Dog and his bone.
In the meantime, the family had not stood still. My brother had his challenges, and my sister… In April, my sister called to say she had breast cancer. Throughout April, tests were being done to determine how serious it was. The good news was it was Stage 1. The bad news was it was Type 3, aggressive. We held hands through the phone throughout April, through tests, through days of waiting. Kate’s surgery was scheduled for May 7.
My brother came for a visit in early May. We weren’t sure if it would be one day, a week, or maybe a month or months. We lasted one week. We dearly love one another and we have lived together in the past. This time, though… it was tougher. As though we had calcified during the time passed, nine years, in fact. We stepped on one another’s toes, without meaning to, but still heavy footed. We also had some good times that week where we laughed and laughed. He was here for the day of Kate’s surgery, May 7. We planned to call her about 5:00 p.m. our time, which would be 7:00 p.m. Tennessee time.
Kate was due to check into the hospital at 8:00 a.m., her surgery was scheduled for 10:00 a.m. A mastectomy, the left breast and lymph node. For some reason, Kate had read in a book that she might lose the use of her left arm and this worried her more than just about anything else. “How will I get dressed? How will I drive?” She called us at 2:00 p.m. her time. She was home, cozily ensconced on the sofa with her daughter, who flew in from California, there to take care of her. Do you get that? Breast mastectomy, home by 2:00 p.m. Holy mother of God.
She came through with flying colors. Nothing in the lymph node(s), it was contained to the left breast with a 10% chance of returning. What that translates to is no chemotherapy and no radiation. We had thought she might have radiation follow up treatments, but only when there is a 20% and up likelihood of return. Thank You, God. THANK YOU, GOD. Oh, and her left arm was just fine, thank you verra much.
It’s May 28 and I’ve spent all but about $1,000 of the $22,000.
Your turn to breathe, she said mischievously. In. Out. easy-peasy. In. Out.
I paid all my bills, yes, May rent, too, Toto! I paid off both credit cards. Zero. And, I plan to cancel one of them because of the high interest rate and the $79 annual fee coming due in August. I paid back everyone who had lent or given me money over the course of the last two years. I got to fulfill my dream of “I can pay, play and give away.” (Bonnie Ingersol). I got to contribute to causes I believe in, one of which, of course, is Rara. (Want to contribute, too? See that bright shiny button off to the right of the home page – click it… grin). I got to get my hair cut. I went on EBay and bought jeans, a new winter jacket (two, actually) – my first in three years?, sheets, glorious sheets, 1500 thread count, which I put on my bed today… Oh my gawd… sooooo soft. And the color is of milk chocolate with lots of milk. And, the duvet matches in 1500 thread count. I confess, I’d forgotten about Ella, the greythound and Elby, That Cat!’s nails. Please, God, please do not let them tear those sheets….
And, so I am back, and four posts lighter. Thanks for reading.