A little over three weeks ago my mom was diagnosed with cancer. It is untreatable. It’s spread to her lymph nodes and in her brain – as well as a growth in her chest/throat that makes eating impossible.
I’m angry about this most of the time. Anger is easier than sadness… plus, I might get to kick someone’s ass if something goes awry. Me with anger issues… go figure!
About Enjoying Every Sandwich
Thank you Amber, for pointing me back to one of my favorite songwriters, Warren Zevon, who, when speaking about the lung cancer that would kill him told David Letterman, he was reminded to “Enjoy Every Sandwich.”
I’ve often been fearful when exposing my songwriting and performing to people; half-started and half-stopped things I’ve wanted to do and accomplish, write and then erase things I’d like to write that fall outside some imaginary line.
But, time is not saved, spent, or guaranteed. We have now and nothing else.
The best parts of me are from my mom… my respect and adoration of women, my sarcasm and sense of humor, my competitiveness, and my love for people. She raised me much more so than my father did and I’m glad for that.
I won’t admonish you to tell someone you’ve avoided that you love them. I won’t tell you to be nicer to people. Because this isn’t for you. This is for her. You get to figure out on your own if you will a crappy, angry, complainer or someone who builds people up. It’s your life ya know!
Four months ago my mom, at 84, was playing 2 hours of tennis, several times a week. And that, a year after a hip replacement.
When first diagnosed, the doctor asked my mom, “Is there anything I can do for you?”
True to form, my mom replied, “Get me a better doctor with a different diagnosis.”
It made everyone laugh. And that is her way… to not be a bother and to maintain yourself in crisis. She was an intensive care nurse for 30 years… she’s seen the rodeo played out. As she told one family member… “Now is not the time for crying, there is stuff to get done!”
In short, she’s a bad-ass. Most people would need 3 lifetimes to be as much of a bad-ass as she is. Good luck trying!
Here is what I will tell you. Life is amazing! It’s a beautiful thing! My children know that “AMAZING” is the word I use most often to describe…
…that lizard I caught, the sunset, the rain, the taste of water from a garden hose, the first cup of coffee in the morning, rivers, the homeless guy playing guitar in Miami, cell phones, new guitar strings, old guitar smell, daughters, sons, ex-wives, dogs, people who love dogs, a long walk to clear your head, a book to fill your head, sandwiches (yes, sandwiches)…. most of it is amazing! Life, is amazing!
…and my mom. My mom is amazing!
Note: I first wrote this piece on Facebook. Upon posting, the above mentioned Amber commented..
What we have is our story, what we hope for is a witness. Your mom has both. Lucky girl, she is.
I read that and lost my shit!