Tuesday, December 27, 2011

A (Mostly) Uneventful Year

I didn't realize it had been this long since I made an entry in this blog. I always heard that time goes by faster the older you get, and it's true. It feels like only a couple of months ago that this year was new and I was still trying to absorb the shock that my Aunt Bernice, who I spent so many enjoyable hours with for most of my life, had passed away several weeks before and I was never told anything until a couple of scribbled lines on a Christmas card from a cousin who (I thought) knew what she meant to me...and the shock of losing my friend Sandi who was so instrumental in bringing hubby and I together...and the shock of losing our friends Mike and Al, all way too young (55, 61 and 56 respectively). Then there was a BIG situation hubby and I were still going through (finance-oriented) that was not resolved till this year and that I hope I/we never go through again. While digesting all of this and hoping this year would be better, January (mostly was). My cousin's dear daughter Janet and my LONG-time pen pal Ellayne (who I wrote to on and off since we were 15 and 16) found me on Facebook. It has been so awesome getting reacquainted with them. And that same month, I went to the annual Chili Cookoff at First Christian Church (not even being sure why, since it was SO different from the traditional liturgical type of church I was sure I was seeking) and that night, Jill, Mary Ann, Becky and Sharon found me. I gradually came to realize, to my shock after a year and a half of searching in vain, that THIS was the church where I was meant to be. So that was a big part of my life that was finally settled (even though a BIG part of me still feels unworthy to be considered part of a place with SUCH Godly, loving people).

The next noteworthy occurrences of the year were downers. Only a few weeks before we found each other again, my good friend Ellayne was stunned by the sudden loss of her husband, who was my age. Yet another somber reminder of the brevity and uncertainty of life. My dear friend Dianne's beloved dad Hal died in April at age 89 -- and I was crushed to not be able to attend his memorial service due to a severe migraine. In May, our darling "secret" dog Zane, a beautiful purebred collie who had lived in our yard with his two sisters since Dec. '09, suddenly died at the young age of 7. And my anticipated three-day trip to Portland and Salem (and potentially Eugene, but I didn't make it that far) in June was ruined by another severe migraine.

The next few months were pretty uneventful -- work most every weekday, stay up too late on weekends, crochet every chance I get, see Dianne every few weeks, try to get to church and to my Tues. night Bible study every few weeks. Then in Oct. and Nov., our wonderful senior furballs Jesse and Archie had surgeries a few weeks apart. First, Jesse had a tumor removed from his eyelid. We were shocked to find out it was cancer,, but the vet was sure he got it all. Then Archie had a hematoma removed from his ear. Aside from the first night when he forced off the bandage and made a mess, he recovered well. But Jesse's left eye gradually started looking weird, to where it looked like a oval divided diagonally, half solid black and half solid pink. So earlier this month, back to the vet he went. We were beyond shocked to learn that the cancer was back and the vet felt that the surest way to keep the cancer from recurring again (though there was still no guarantee)...was to remove his left eye. This was stunning news, but we knew we had to do whatever we can to save our boy. So, on Dec. 14, he had the surgery. It went well....but over the next several days, Jesse scratched the area and removed the stitches. So on the 22nd, he had to go back for a THIRD operation. Now he has to wear one of those dang cones around his neck to keep him from scratching it. He doesn't like it and we don't either, but there is no choice. It's broken my heart that our poor baby has had to go through all this, and we can only pray that he heals completely now and that the cancer does NOT come back. So the year, that started out so well, has not ended all that well. But we are thankful to still have Jesse and Archie, and that Susie (who turned 3 in Sept. and still has not bonded with me after 2+ years, but I do love her) and our piggies (including Pinky, the senior) are doing well.

On Sat., Dec. 17, Dianne and I took a bus trip to Leavenworth (a/k/a America's Bavaria) for their annual tree lighting, which was her Christmas present to me. It was a memorable day in a beautiful setting, and on the trip back, on the bus they showed the movie "Miracle on 34th Street" (the original from '47) which, incredibly, I had never seen. I really enjoyed it, so much that I watched it again on TV on Christmas Day. Christmas itself was quiet as usual, with hubby having to work at the kennel. I intended to go to church on both Christmas Eve and Day, but he was too tired to go Christmas Eve after working all day, so I stayed home with him. I heard it was packed Christmas Eve and not so the next day, but still a nice service. I made cornish hens and the usual simple side dishes, finished the latest fancy pink thread baby dress, and just took it easy the next day, then back to work today (well, actually yesterday -- so what else is new; when am I NOT awake after midnight!).

I'll post my latest crochet projects to my crochet blog by the end of the year, and look forward to another long weekend before the long, dark month of January. Hopefully the coming year will be better for my friends who lost someone so dear to them, and our sweet doggies will hang in there also. I have another hope for 2012 that I won't go into just now, what with all the false starts and literally giving up that it will never happen. I DID give up, but hopefully not forever. And that's all I'll say about that for now, except that I can't do it without the divine intervention I feel has eluded me all these decades....