The more things change…

…the more they stay the same.

We (the five of us) are sitting in the neuro-oncologist’s office waiting to see the fabulous DrC. I have brought enough electronics to entertain each of the children (two cells, a nook and my laptop). We have a game of Uno, a game of Backgammon and a lesson in learning Mommy’s phone number (the source of today’s whine-fest)

I am blogging this from here b/c I am fairly sure that I won’t feel like telling it after later and b/c we usually have a long wait for the doctor and writing helps to distract me from the kid noise. Later  today I will be posting the regular 6-week Honey-status update. Be on the lookout.

So, let me tell you about my reunion-vacation….

First, I managed to get to Boston with no real problem. Two carry-ons, no waiting. Niceness.

Took the bus from Logan to Plymouth – my sister, F and her three sons picked me up and vacation was on.

They had turned the master bedroom into a retreat with flowers, candles and little “welcome” and “We love you” signs. Awesomeness.

Of course, there was the moment of guilt when I realized that my sister and her husband were planning on sleeping on the air mattress in the guest room so that I could have a retreat, but I got over that pretty quickly. Thank goodness.

On Thursday night, we gathered the whole fam-damily at Friendly’s for deserts. There is not much that’s better than a Friendly’s Perfect Ending hot fudge sundae with massive amounts of extra hot fudge. (Unless it is an Awful Awful from Newport Creamery.) So, there we were, five adults and seven children catching up on the past three years, oohing and awing over new nieces and how much the other kids have grown. Undoubtedly the waitresses worse dream – a large group for ice-cream only usually means they will be labor intensive but not leave a very good tip b/c the bill is less pricey than dinner, you know….

Anyway – it was a lovely family reunion. Everybody looked good, everybody seems happy, nobody cried. Success all around.

Friday (and every day after that) I woke up, puttered around and then headed off to the cape. Silly me, I totally forgot what happens when you try to cross the Sagamore Bridge on a Friday in the summer. It was not pretty. At all. At all…

When I finally got over the bridge and was actually ON CAPE, I had the opportunity to visit with friends I haven’t seen in decades – It felt great – kinda’ like sliding into a favorite pair of Levi’s. In fact, one of the people from my youth whom I hold dearest to my heart ever so kindly introduced my to Sailor Jerry. I haven’t had a rum drink since I was in Barbados 23 years ago.This was much better than I remembered. Thank you my friend – I love you.

Drove by the house my parents built – the one I grew up in…. The current owner must have gotten it business zoned – he has a salon in the basement. He did invite me in to look around, and then kindly offered me up a place to stay if I needed it while I was visiting. (awkward)

On my way back to my sister’s house I got a little flaky – I’m sure it had nothing at all to do with the glorious rum/coke I had just finished – but I couldn’t decide where I wanted to go. Did I want to go to the duck pond? the boardwalk? just home? what? So, I did what anyone else would have done in my situation. I did a lot of turning around in parking lots while I was deciding…. At one point I saw blue lights in my rear-view and I thought it would be quite prudent to get out of the way – the siren wasn’t on, but you know how it is…. So I pulled into the (do not) enter parking lot at the police station, turned around and then pulled into the liquor store across the street to make a decision and to set my GPS.

I don’t think you can begin to imagine how surprised I was when the blue lights showed up behind me again. I had done nothing wrong, I wasn’t speeding, I stopped at the light, the hell was going on??!!??

Anxiety and I are not well acquainted – at all – so I was perfectly calm and all together waiting for whatever evil awaited me in the form of a town cop…. License out, rental agreement out, wait for it… wait for it…. Now – police officer at the car asking me if I didn’t see him behind me. I replied that of course I had, that was why I got out of his way. Then, I looked to see who had busted me (this gets good) and it was one of my high school crushes. Which probably would have been absolutely no big deal had I not said, “I had SUCH a crush on you in high school.”

Short story long, I didn’t get a warning or a ticket – just a bit embarrassed.

Saturday. The day. I kept mistakenly calling the event Homecoming or Prom – it left me with that same kind of excited/anxious/nervous feeling. In the afternoon, I went to visit a friend who was in theatre with me in high school (yeah – I was a pretty big nerd even back then). It was wonderful to be able to face to face with her rather than only being able to Facebook with her. She looks lovely, she looks happy, her children are charming (even, nay especially, the 18 year old).

Got back on the road at 4:30 – looking to find a friend or relative who’d let me get dressed and pressed at their house when I got a text from a friend telling me that the pre-reunion was going to be at the town tavern.

Super quick, stopped at CVS, got some disposable razors, a sample deodorant and some lotion. Dry shaved my legs in the parking lot (only one small nick), lotioned, freshened my pits and I was off. Still in my comfies – but closer to ready than I had been 4 minutes prior. Got to the tavern, had me a drink (loving that Sailor Jerry) – chitchatted a bit and we were ready to go. Until I realized I was still in cut offs and a tank. Hardly the statement I was shooting for. Changed into my dress in the car, slapped on some eye color and mascara and I was READY.

The reunion was truly a fantastic event. Most everybody looked just like they did only the adult version. Most everybody seemed like they had their same core – just with new experiences added on for color. Most everybody actually wanted to catch up with classmates. For most of us, the lines that segregated us into cliques had been erased. For most of us…

I got lost on my way back to my sister’s after reunion. For 3 hours. We left the club at 1:00, chatted outside for about 30 minutes and then went our separate ways. I tried to utilize the GPS – but the direction lady was messing with me and leading me to places that I was even less familiar with. I problem solved this one on my own (because 3:00 am is too late to be calling for backup help) and came to the conclusion that if I could retrace the route back to the cape, I would be able to start anew to find my sleeping place. I finally got home at 4:30, collapsed in my clothes and was awoken by happy children not quite four hours later.

The rest of my visit was peaceful time with folk who love me.

It was just what I needed. I spent more time crying over the five days I was gone from home than I did in the past year combined. Friends were asking after Honey. But it was more of a, “How are you doing with all that is going on?” type of thing. Which of course would get me misty. If we are being clinical, or cracking jokes – I am generally okay. When I have to talk about our experiences, I process at the same time. I don’t want to be processing. I think I did okay when I was just riding on cruise control. It is scary to think about what may happen.

It’s funny. I have been feeling like I have really matured in the past couple of years. That the physical changes I have experienced since Blob are a reflection of my new emotional growth and maturity.

Then I go back to the town I grew up in, got stupid while driving, got pulled over, got lost quite a few times, dry shaved my legs in the CVS parking lot and dressed for an evening event in the parking lot of the bar I was just leaving. Cuz I am that kind of classy broad.

And I really thought I had grown up and changed.

Silly me.

love you (and going home again)


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