To my faithful followers: I’m sorry to abandon you so unexpectedly. I was not in the shop–well, I was a few weeks back, but not since I’d last written. Since my cancer diagnosis, I have come to understand that unexplained disappearances are often assumed to be health related, or a sign that I’ve died. So I am here to reassure you that I am alive and well, leukemia notwithstanding.
Rather, my computer was in the shop, and I can’t recall how to write by hand anymore. How does one edit obsessively without a computer? There must be many landfills overflowing with the eraser shavings of yesteryear.
My computer’s ill health was untimely because I’ve had so much to tell you. My posts have been whirling around in my head with no avenue for expression. This must be blogging withdrawal. There’s the inspiring leukemia walk we attended Saturday night, followed by the best fast food I’ve ever tasted, and, wait for it, the new car. I’ll get to all of these things but you’ll have to be patient.
Saturday night, J. and I and Jelly and our wonderful, spirited, up-for-anything friend, S., participated in Calgary’s 10th annual Light the Night Walk for leukemia and lymphoma. Supporters’ t-shirts were white while sickies’ shirts were blue. Supporters’ lanterns were red and the sickies’ version was white. The golden lanterners were there in memory of someone who had died. It was quite moving, and dramatically beautiful, marching amidst 1,500 lanterns, me with my blue shirt and white lantern, J. and S. with their white shirts and red lanterns, and Jelly with her special attachable flashlight to prevent marchers’ missteps. (Bassets are low to the ground.)
I don’t know about anyone else, but I sure noticed the blue shirts. Sadly, there were too many little blue shirts on small children. (I didn’t know until that day that leukemia is the most common type of childhood cancer.) There were also blue shirts on parents with white-shirted partners and children, which made me unspeakably sad. Those folks better pull through along with all those kids. And then there were people like me, childless (but dogful), yet surrounded by the support of my family and special friend.
I decided to feel like one of many guests of honour. I got many smiles and greetings, more than my share. When I asked the cost of the red plastic bracelet–kind of like the yellow cancer-fighting one but without the ethics scandal–the volunteer gave it to me for free because, in her words, “You’ve suffered enough.” And at the end of the walk, as a blue-shirted white lanterner, I received a white rose.
I’ll admit that we skipped out after the short (3-km) route rather than completing the long (5-km) route. Dear S. had friends to meet–boy does that girl have energy!–and both Jelly and I were pooped. But our drive home fortuitously tracked the route of the more ambitious walkers, so I leaned my white lantern out the window while J. shamelessly honked the horn. Never have we so disrespectfully disrupted the peace. We garnered cheers and hoots and hollers from the walkers. What a wonderful finish to a moving evening.
So next year, feel free to join us. I thought it might be fun to get a group together, and I’ve been racking my brain for a catchy team name. I’ve decided that Annie’s Anemics doesn’t have a great ring to it. Team L’Chaim anyone? I’m open to your suggestions.