How to be a bad mother in one easy step

Basset with hot water bottle on head and covered in blanket

Remember how hesitant I was to start volunteering because I feared my precarious health would make me unreliable? I had visions of calling in sick on a regular basis, but I should have known better. I am a reliable person. If I say I’m going to do something, I do it. I don’t cancel any commitment unless I’m strapped to a hospital bed.

I am pleased to report that, several months in, my health has not affected my volunteering. I’ve had to cancel only one date because of illness, and legitimately so: I didn’t want to risk sharing an infection with an unsuspecting blood donor.

I’ve been feeling under the weather the past few days–am I still allowed to say that if I’m in remission?–but I had a PALS visit with Jelly scheduled yesterday. Of course we’d still go. I’m not contagious, I’m just not feeling 100%. What does the U.S. Postal Service say? “Through gout, fatigue, anemia, and fluid retention….” (That doesn’t sound quite right.)

It never occurred to me that one day Jelly might have to bow out.

Upon awakening at 7 a.m., I realized that Jelly had slept late. (She’s up with the birds, remember?) Most mornings I send her back to bed once or twice before we all get up. She didn’t wake us? t naively believed Jelly had finally overcome her early-morning awakening.

Then J. gave her breakfast, and I realized how wrong I was. When our dog is disinterested in food, we know she’s unwell.

Normally Jelly eats in record time. Those dogs who pick at their food all day? Jelly ain’t one of them. In fact, she has a special dog bowl that slows down her eating. Before she had her special bowl, she’d inhale her kibble so quickly that, soon after she finished, she’d leave her breakfast, each little kibble intact, all over the kitchen floor. (I’ll let your imagination fill in the blanks here.)

So J. and I both tried to recall what Jelly had scrounged in the backyard the day before, other than kale. There was the occasional blade of grass, and a quick nibble on some grass patching that J. had spread. For whatever reason, Jelly has always loved grass (no, I don’t mean marijuana) in any form. Could her gardening have caused her stomach upset?

Sadly, despite our stellar attendance record with PALS, Jelly had to pass on yesterday’s visit. I emailed the organizer early yesterday morning to apologize for the late cancellation. What I neglected to tell her is that a lawn is currently taking root in Jelly’s stomach, causing her some discomfort, and that if she’d only vomit, she’d feel a lot better. Some things are better left unsaid.

If only I could end this post here.

I am a terrible mother, joking about my sick one. While I was busy minimizing Jelly’s tummy ache, J. determined Jelly needed to see Dr. Animal. Turns out our pup has an infection, hence the fever, lack of appetite, and lethargy. She has shown some improvement today, thank goodness, as evidenced by a few fleeting tail wags.

Hopefully Jelly will forgive me someday for neglecting her care. If not, I’ll find her a good therapist, one who will let her up on the couch.

Increasing my blog’s readership, one visitor at a time

It was a record week with two real live clients. For whatever reason, my second client found the session helpful and decided to rebook. At this rate, I may actually have a bit of income to declare at year end. Do you think her rebooking had anything to do with the despairing look on my face as the session neared its end? Or my begging? I thought so too.

I commended this client for making contact since we hadn’t seen each other for some time. I can’t imagine calling my therapist not knowing if she’d died since we’d last met. Kudos to her for taking the risk. I believe she could see, once she arrived, that my death is not imminent, or at least doesn’t seem to be so.

On a much triter note, I’d love my writing to find a larger audience. All writers would, wouldn’t they? Sometimes my narcissistic side wonders why my blog hasn’t garnered more attention over time. Is it my abrasively opinionated stance? My biting humour? How about my many random syntax errors? You’re probably wondering whether I’ll ever learn to stop my participles from dangling.

Despite my ongoing efforts to keep you entertained–“Enough already,” you say, “I wouldn’t have committed to this blog if I knew we’d be forging a long-term relationship”–I haven’t yet garnered any publishing contracts, I’ve had no requests for guest articles in esteemed newspapers, no talk-show appearances, not even any invitations to relocate to L.A. Perhaps my fame will follow my death, just like that of Bach or van Gogh.

It would probably help if I used social media to broaden my reading audience, but, because I don’t live with a teenager, I’m at a loss. I’ve taken a more primitive approach to expanding readership instead: I awkwardly tell people about the blog and ask them to take a look.

Sadness doll

Can you see the resemblance?

Take, for example, Mr. Platelet at the Calgary Blood Services clinic, the regular platelet donor who likened me to Little Miss Sunshine a few weeks back rather than my soulmate, Sadness, from Inside Out. You know Sadness, who’s forever trying to bring Joy down. (As a side note, notwithstanding the pale blue facial tone, I bear a striking resemblance to Sadness, even when I’m happy. The higher-than-average BMI, the frumpy sweater, the glasses, and the eyes that are always wide open. Hey, maybe that’s why Sadness is always sad. She’s tired all the time!)

I caught up with Mr. Platelet–would “Little Mr. Sunshine” be a better moniker?–this past Monday when I was volunteering and, while he was quietly eating his soup, I told him how touched I was by his kind words last time he was in. And then I clumsily directed him to the recent blog post where he’d played a starring role. In yet another act of kindness, he gamely read the post while consuming his soup. And just like that, I increased my readership that day. Poor fellow probably didn’t know what hit him. Even my clients would say I’ve never been known for my delicate touch.

No wonder my blog readership is increasing at a snail’s pace. Should I reconsider the social media approach? It’s less intrusive. Now I just need a teenager….

Social media icons (twitter, Pinterest, youtube

In certain circles, I’m known as Little Miss Sunshine

Stuffed toy of Little Miss Sunshine

If you think Sadness and Fear are my constant companions, I beg to differ. Sure, I’ve been a little off kilter lately due to my gouty complications, my unrelenting fatigue, and my difficulty handling doctor change, but the rest of the time, Joy prevails.

If you know me only by what I write, you may envision my holding back tears all the time. You may even wonder how I ever managed to become a psychologist. Before you write my provincial regulatory body to rescind my license lest I harm the public, I beg you to hear me out.

Despite your negative preconceptions, under the right conditions I am an unimaginable bundle of joy. I bring light and life to those around me. People can’t help but smile when I enter a room, and not only because my fly is undone.

To demonstrate my point, I’d like to share a story from earlier this week, before I became unduly distracted–and distressed, I might add, in case you didn’t pick that up–by the Trauma of the Changing of the Doctors. My moment of unbridled happiness took place on Monday afternoon while I was volunteering at Canadian Blood Services.

I’ve been on the Monday shift since I started volunteering at the clinic last September. It turns out that donors often set their appointments on the same day of the week, and that over the months I’ve become familiar with many Monday donors. I haven’t yet gotten to the point where I can anticipate their soup preferences or cookie choices, but I do see them on a fairly regular basis.

Earlier in the shift, I was feeling somewhat verklempt because I had met a donor who was profoundly hearing impaired. I did not realize her impairment until I noticed her reading my lips and heard an unusual lilt in her voice. Her hearing was impaired, but her blood was not, so in she came to give. The range of people who attend the clinic never ceases to amaze me.

Then Mr. Platelet entered. Mr. Platelet is a lovely fellow who donates frequently. Platelet and plasma donors often attend the clinic more often because they can, and thus we get to know them better. For the first time, Mr. Platelet called me by my name, which is on my little red volunteer vest. We had never chatted before but we spoke briefly as he was leaving. During this conversation, he told me he liked donating during my shifts because I am “all smiles and sunshine”. Not wanting to disabuse him of that notion, I thanked him warmly and told him he was very sweet.

And in truth, I am Little Miss Sunshine at the clinic. I look out upon the donors slurping their soup each week and imagine, “Are you the one who saved my life when I needed blood (or platelets or plasma)?” Thanks for that.

After Mr. Platelet left, I broke the volunteer code of conduct: I neglected the donors while pulling out my phone to text J. I wrote, simply, “I am all smiles and sunshine.” She promptly responded, “I know.” And so, too, should you, dear readers, in case you sometimes forget. I’d forget too if I were you.

Raising my business from the grave

My new life, Chapter 1, typed on paper in a typewriter

Last summer, I realized that: 1) I probably wasn’t going to die anytime soon; 2) not only was my death not imminent, my health was fairly stable; and, 3) I was getting bored of twiddling my thumbs. Those factors led me to seek out volunteering opportunities. To my surprise and delight, I was accepted to volunteer despite my leukemia. Today I enjoy my volunteer assignments with both Canadian Blood Services and PALS (thanks to my PAL Jelly, who is remarkably well behaved in unfamiliar settings).

I convinced myself that, if I started volunteering, I might not miss working so much. My love for volunteering has not lessened my desire to work as a psychologist. To clarify, I don’t miss making money, I miss helping people.

I’ve had only one client visit my office so far this year. My client base has trickled to a standstill for two reasons that I can think of: those who know I have leukemia must think I’m dead by now, and those who don’t know I’ve been sick will have trouble locating me on the internet. Or at least I’m assuming they will; I’ve never Googled myself to find out.

What’s the first thing you do when you receive the potential name of a professional for hire, whether it’s a plumber or a financial advisor or a psychologist? You do an internet search, and decide whether you’re willing to give that person a try based on what you can find out. (I guess I shouldn’t speak for you, but I know that’s what I do.) If the professional doesn’t have a website, you may form your opinion based on her marathon time, or her snarky letter to editor of the local newspaper, or her involvement in this or that charity, or whatever else the internet chooses to share with you.

Many psychologists were slow to jump on the social-media bandwagon, perhaps because of the strict rules that govern how we advertise ourselves. We need to honestly represent our credentials–I can’t say I’m a Rhodes scholar if I’m not–and we can’t include any client testimonials. That means no quotes from former clients on how much I helped them through difficult times. Furthermore, when psychologists advertise or use social media in other ways, we must not breech client confidentiality. For example, we cannot befriend our clients on Facebook.

Despite these social-media constraints, more and more psychologists have been creating snazzy, engaging websites in recent years. In order to keep up with the Freuds (bad analogy since Freud was a psychiatrist but let it go, okay?), I too may have to create a website for my practice. Then when people search online for my obituary, they may instead find that, not only am I still alive, I’m open for business.

Once I have my website up and running, I’ll have to figure out how to solicit potential clients. Our ethical guidelines forbid ambulance chasing, which is overly constraining, don’t you think? What’s wrong with showing up at funerals and encouraging people to seek my help? I don’t need any client testimonials to assure you that I’m an excellent grief therapist. Someone has got to help the bereaved, and it might as well be me.

Engaging with the not-so-disengaged

Jelly with her PALS bandana on standing at PALS visitJelly and I have our PALS routine down pat now. I show her that special blue bandana and she heads to the front door, rather than hiding under the dining room table as she often does before her walks. We head out to the car and she quivers–in fear or excitement? I don’t know–as I pick her up and toss her into the car. And off we head to our assignment.

In addition to our bi-monthly retirement-residence stint, we participate in many one-time visits, going to places that are unfamiliar to us and meeting new people. Wednesday’s visit was was one of these “special visits”, to use PALS’ terminology. We signed up to visit clients at a dementia program in the community. The room was full to overflowing with those with dementia, as well as staff, volunteers, and assorted supportive family members. The program staff had planned their activities around our visit.

The clients weren’t quite ready for us when we arrived, so we were directed to a couch to wait. Since waiting isn’t Jelly’s forté, she immediately started whining. If I understood her correctly, she was saying, “We’ve come all this way and I’m not the centre of attention? Why is no one petting me? I’m bored.”

Jelly’s vocalization was quite the ice breaker. Upon hearing her cries, people could not help but turn her way and smile. The group seemed eager to finish what they were doing so they could meet the disruptive little imp.

As clients started wandering over, the whining stopped, thank God. In no time, Jelly was in her glory, surrounded by the many doting dog people in that little room. Jelly pranced around, visiting with anyone who wanted to meet her. Some petted her head while others graciously took her rump. Some people bent down low enough for kisses (not from me, I have boundaries, remember?). She didn’t mind when clients asked what her name was, even if they’d asked a few minutes prior. She was my model of patience, acceptance, and inclusion.

Everyone actively participated in the visit except for one fellow, who was seated apart from the others at a table in the dining area. (We were asked to avoid this area because lunch was being laid out on the tables.) This fellow had paper on the table in front of him and a pencil to draw. I was informed he was the artist in the group. He loved to draw.

Unbeknownst to me, a staff member had taken a photograph of Jelly. While the rest of us were visiting, this fellow was using the photo and glances our way to draw a picture of Jelly. Had no one informed me, I would not have realized he was participating in the visit in his own way. Prior to our departure, a staff member told me about the drawing and shared her photos with me. I see quite a likeness, right down to Jelly’s little white socks.

Sketch of Jelly at PALS visit

As you go through your day today, remember that you too may touch that proverbial fellow in the corner. That one person in the room who seems disinterested and disengaged may show you he’s not, but in his own way. Make sure you don’t miss it. I almost did.

Am I heartless to the homeless?

Hand with ladle putting soup in bowl two hands are holding

I went into volunteering with my eyes wide open, yet I hadn’t considered the ethical quandaries I might face in my positions. On Monday at Canadian Blood Services, I was tested. As I share this story, I expect some of you may disagree with my thought process or my actions. If so, I trust you will tell me.

I’d been hoping that my International Happiness Day would not include Sadness, and it didn’t until I was almost finished my Canadian Blood Services shift. Then, a homeless person wandered in the clinic back door, by our little free restaurant. (I assumed homelessness based on her dishevelled appearance and soiled clothing.) She walked toward the nursing station and was greeted by the head nurse.

Then she returned to the restaurant with snacks the nurse had given her, stopping to request a bowl of soup. She sat down only briefly before asking me to put the remainder in a cup to go. I refused. Because the soup is hot, no one leaves the clinic with it.

The woman was angry with me for saying no, and after trying to coerce me into changing my mind, she returned to her table to finish eating. I trust she was genuinely hungry, and I knew she had cookies and juice for the road as well. I had to leave while she was still eating, so I don’t know how the story ended.

You may wonder, based on this incident, whether I care about homeless people and I can assure you I do. I know that mental illness and addiction plague the homeless community, and that those who do not suffer these ills are on the streets because of other unfortunate circumstances such as unemployment or relationship breakdown. Homelessness is a serious problem in Calgary as in any major metropolis.

I treat homeless people respectfully because they are human beings in unfortunate situations. But if I see a person begging on the street, I do not give money because I don’t think my buck or two helps. I also know there are social-service agencies offering food and lodging to people in need. I believe that donating to these agencies addresses homelessness more effectively than giving randomly to individuals.

I normally lavish praise and food on everyone who comes to the clinic. Some have been deemed unable to donate while others are there in support of a friend or loved one. This woman did not come in to donate, and the resources are not designated for her. It’s as simple as that, but it’s never simple. It’s just a bowl of soup, but it’s not.

What if she returns regularly in search of a free meal? Say she brings a group of her friends with her next time. What then? By meeting her immediate needs that day, am I potentially creating a problem down the road?

Thankfully, the head nurse witnessed our interchange and came over to lend a hand. She kindly supported me for how I had handled myself. She also provided some guidelines were I to run into a similar situation again.

Was I really thinking I could park my ethics at the volunteer door? Not possible. But some of these situations are harder to handle than others. What would you have done?

Happy Rebirthday to you, Fred

I may rush in last minute when we meet for coffee, but I’m always early for my volunteering shifts. That’s how I was first volunteer to arrive at my scheduled Blood Services shift last Monday, only to be met by a FRiendly Donor (Fred seems the obvious moniker here) awaiting his appointment. Fred seemed in good spirits and, as the only two people there, we chatted while I warmed the soup.

Within a few minutes, I’d learned that Fred was donating blood that day, his 37th birthday. After offering him unlimited cookies (sadly I had no cake), he added, “I celebrated another birthday yesterday.” I looked confused, so he explained.

The day before his 33rd birthday, Fred underwent brain surgery to remove a benign tumour. He said the doctors had found the growth by chance. The surgery was successful, and after it was over, Fred experienced two major changes: the migraines he’d endured for years stopped and he was no longer depressed. He wasn’t aware that the tumour was causing these problems and was pleasantly surprised when they vanished. No wonder Fred celebrates that day. He considers his surgery-related birthday more important than his real birthday because of how his life has changed for the better since.

Hanging whole blood unitsWhat does this have to do with blood donation? Before the surgery, Fred noticed ten units of blood hanging nearby in case they were needed during his operation. Thankfully he did not need any of that blood, but the experience motivated him to become a regular donor.

I became unexpectedly emotional as Fred shared his story. When I was at my sickest, I received 22 transfusions–whole blood, platelets, and plasma–and I’ve required the odd top up since. Thank goodness Fred didn’t need all that blood during his surgery; he left more in reserve for cancerous people like me. And now, with his donations, he’s bolstering these life-saving supplies on a regular basis.

Fred had shared so much that I did something I don’t often do when I’m volunteering there: I told Fred I had leukemia, which deepens my gratitude for donors like him. Although I always feel this gratitude, I rarely tell donors how much their giving means to me personally. Could Fred’s blood have helped me at some point? I’ll never know, but I think he’d have good blood. He seemed like a decent person.

I’m not one to hijack a conversation, yet my sharing felt appropriate in that moment. Fred had disclosed a lot to me, and I wanted to let him know in the only way I knew how why his story had moved me as deeply as it did. The psychologist in me wondered whether Fred was as touched by my disclosure as I was by his. He asked me how I was doing with appropriate caring and concern and without a touch of pity, thank God.

As is my nature, I returned the focus to Fred within a minute or two, but I was glad I trusted him in that moment. Donors can only benefit from the chance to meet a recipient who is alive because of donations like theirs. I can be that grateful recipient, even while I’m warming soup.

Hopefully Fred and I will cross paths again so I can ask him his real name.

Sometimes boundaries lapse, and that’s okay

Hospice room with woman in bed, younger woman reading to her, and dog with paws on bed

Months ago now, two PALS volunteers, one of whom happened to be a social worker, interviewed me to see if I too would make a suitable PALSie. Ms. Therapist went off script near the end and asked me how I’d contain my therapist self in this role of PALS volunteer. What a great question. I was stumped.

As a helper by profession, I find it hard to ignore that supportive instinct in other settings. The job of a PALS volunteer is not to be a therapist to the people we visit, many of whom I’ll meet only once. I must deliberately set internal boundaries to stop myself from becoming overly or inappropriately involved with these visitees.

Setting these boundaries is not easy, I’ll admit. During the interview, I acknowledged I’m not great at shutting off this supportive side of myself. I told the interviewers that I often avoid the potential altogether by not informing acquaintances that I’m a psychologist. Sometimes Knowledge of my profession alone may encourage people to seek my support inappropriately. I may have previously mentioned a fellow gym goer once seeking relationship advice while I was naked in the change room. Lesson learned? Once burned, twice clothed.

Because the role of the PALS volunteer is therapeutic by nature, I must be aware of maintaining my emotional boundaries at all times. This becomes harder as I get to know some of the residents in our assigned retirement home. In fact, I wavered last week during our regularly scheduled visit.

Have I mentioned that one wing of the residence Jelly and I visit is a hospice? Yes, people go there to die. As I was entering the building, I happened upon a woman I had met previously. She was leaving after visiting her mom, a hospice resident. This woman was obviously feeling emotional, but she stopped to greet Jelly and told me how much her mom had enjoyed the last PALS visit. She asked me to check in on her mom again that day.

According to the bounds of my role, I should have wished the daughter well at this point, but instead I said, “This [watching your mom die] must be hard.” I learned she’d been visiting daily and commended her for being such a good support to her ailing mom.

The daughter became teary, but I felt I had to acknowledge what she was going through. It felt better to risk making her cry than to ignore her impending loss. Boundary crossed. I didn’t hand her my business card (although I had one in my wallet) or mention that I’m a psychologist; I wished her well and off she went.

Sadly, I don’t know if I’ll see that woman or her mom again. The thing about a hospice is that people aren’t often there long. I did take Jelly to visit the mom, who looked all the more frail since we were last there. She was exhausted and politely declined our company. I respected her boundary and moved on.

All Jelly and I can do is show up and hope to provide comfort. Sometimes we are successful. If that involves crossing the occasional boundary, so be it.

Introducing the Booger Rule

I’ve been finding my three-hour Blood Services shifts exhausting, since they’re closer to four hours by the time I drive to and from the site. I love the work, but I’m comatose by the end of my shift and it takes me a full day to recover. Last week, I asked the volunteer coordinator if I might shorten my shift to a manageable two hours. Thank goodness she was responsive and accommodating, as is her way.

For my first two-hour shift yesterday, the driving was atrocious (heavy snowfall + deep freeze = icy road conditions), so I asked J. to chauffeur me. Some days I’m just not up to driving, and the thought of taking transit in such inclement weather was grossly unappealing. J. dropped me off early and retrieved me a few hours later. On a good note, with my shorter shift, I didn’t resort to keeping myself awake by eating the high-sodium vegetable soup.

I climbed into J.’s warm car (the person who invented heated seats should win a Nobel Prize for Coziness), only to have her say, “Is that a booger on the end of your nose?” My first reaction, after my abject horror of course, was to say, “That’s highly possible.” Then I cried, “Why didn’t you notice this problem on the way to the clinic rather than on the drive home?”

I admit I’m not one to look in the mirror before I leave the house. That’s why so often my fly is undone, I have lunch on my shirt, I have food between my teeth and, it turns out, I sometimes have boogers on the end of my nose. Even if I did inspect myself in the mirror, my near vision is so poor that I’d need reading glasses to notice anything untoward.

Now let’s remember here that I’d just spend the previous two hours serving food to the generous donors, who’d trekked to the clinic through cold and deep snow. Thankfully our eye (or nose) contact was fleeting. I didn’t stand over people’s tables watching them consume their treats; I delivered the wares and went back behind the counter with all the other volunteers. (Alas! Did the volunteers notice too?) Now I’m wondering how many of the donors were thinking, “I don’t want the booger woman serving me my food.”

There is an obvious solution to this problem: I could start looking in the mirror before I leave the house. Who am I kidding? I haven’t been concerned with my appearance for over 53 years; do you think I’m suddenly going to start checking myself before I go out? I don’t want to see how large the black circles are under my eyes, or how bloodshot my eyes are from chronic fatigue, or even how much I look like I have leukemia.

I have a better solution, assuming you’re willing to help. From now on, please invoke the Booger Rule, i.e., alert me if I have boogers on my nose (or greenies between my teeth, or lunch on my shirt, or an open fly). Maybe you wouldn’t want to know, but, trust me, I would. My fleeting embarrassment is surely preferable to my sporting visible boogers all day, don’t you think?

Quote: I'm making eyes at you, hoping you'll see. For my lips cannot form the words. and all I want to say is that which must remain unspoken between us. (also, you have a bit of spinach in your teeth.)

A moment in (cancer) time

hand pushing elevator down button

I usually try to end my blogging week with an upbeat post. Something funny or light to make you laugh. Who wants to hear from Debbie Downer right before the weekend? But Sadness nixed my planned frivolity this week, and I always listen to Saddy. Everyone should listen to Saddy.

Yesterday J. drove me up to the Cancer Centre to pick up my chemotherapy refill. (I’ve given up on having my drugs mailed to my home since that unfortunate Canada Post fiasco last year.) J. waited in the car while I popped in to the pharmacy.

Things went as planned. I made my way through the hoards of patients–cancer stops for no one–hopped onto the elevator, and headed to the pharmacy. I showed the kind pharmacist my red card (also known as the PROOF YOU HAVE CANCER card), and she gave me my little brown paper bag, as if I were hiding condoms or something (not that I’d know about that).

I returned to the elevators, which at that moment were overflowing with patients going up. I needed to go down. After the uppers were gone, I pushed the down button while I watched an older gentleman shuffling toward me very slowly. I asked him where he was headed, and he said he too was going down. “Great. I’ll have company,” I said, perhaps a bit too jovially given the environs.

When our elevator arrived, I let Mr. Shuffle enter first. I followed him in and pushed the button for us. He leaned against the elevator wall as if it were holding him up. After the doors shut, he said, so quietly I almost didn’t hear, “I am so weak.” I looked at him sympathetically but did not know how to respond, so he added, “The chemotherapy.” I touched him on the arm and said, “Cancer is hard.”

I struggled to know how to respond, and I still wonder if I said the right thing. Is there ever a right thing to say? It wasn’t the time or the place to get into the nitty gritty of his treatment; we had only one floor to travel. I didn’t want to minimize his experience with a “Things will look up!” because I didn’t know if this would be true for him. I could have given him a hug, but strangers don’t often hug, and I might have tipped him over. It’s more than that. Since he seemed to be alone, I wanted to bring him home and take care of him, but my boundaries stepped in.

Cancer is hard in different ways for different people. I’m hoping this man sensed that I could see that he was struggling. Maybe I provided comfort, however fleeting. And I’ll hope there comes a time when he doesn’t feel so weak. But right now, I feel sad that anyone has to endure the worst of cancer. I know it’s not easy.

I still feel sad when I think about this man, but I have to let that go today. Joy is joining Jelly and me at the university, where we’ll be cheering up some stressed-out students. Volunteering, my purely selfish endeavour.