It’s a strange feeling walking up the stairs to one of my surgeons offices for a check up, as I remember coming down that exact same stairway with phone in hand calling M and telling him that I have cancer. I feel it in the pit of my stomach and it takes me back. But it doesn’t take me back for long. That hurdle has been jumped now. Time has moved on! My aunt e’s and tells me of how her friend died within 3 days, once diagnosed with stomach cancer. Another of the many reminders to cease the day. And within the same week, a school mom friend has part of her thyroid removed and the pathology results come back benign. Amazing amazing news! Life is fragile and every now and again we get a nudge to put every day trivialities into perspective.
It’s with that perspective that I aim to move forward today. Instead of grumbling about the fact that every single part of my body aches from yoga yesterday, I try to relish the fact that I had the strength to endure the class – well most of it. I decided to take the leap yesterday to try out a new yoga class at Mill Valley Yoga Works. It’s on the schedule as a level 2 and I reckon I can handle that – really? It doesn’t really help that the yogi ‘dude’ has the softest most sing-song Italian accent ever and that his instructions sound more like a hum than actual words. There is no long warm up, no time for meditation. Just straight in and 1.5 hours of solid exercise. About 20 minutes into the class, he is asking people in the room why they are standing on the wrong leg. I really want to say “because we can’t understand what the hell you are saying”, but I keep that thought to myself and soldier on. I tell a friend which class I went to later that day. She laughs and says “oh, you went to yoga boot camp”. Boot camp it was indeed. I will not be beaten, despite the fact that he asked me more than once if I’d eaten too many pancakes that morning (and no – I hadn’t. I was exercising on an empty stomach and was starving, thank you very much). So, I’m going back tomorrow with a small possy of friends – a united front of yoga warriors. ;-).
Perspective also comes about as I drive back from the doctor’s visit. I turn on the radio and it’s playing one of my all time favorite songs. The Clash, ‘should I stay or should I go now‘. I turn up the volume and blast it out as I drive along. It sums up how I’m feeling about America right then. A sweeping statement, I know, but you have to admit that being told that you probably have 5 more years in line before your green card is going to be processed just because your husband is a Swede and swedes are over subscribed right now, is pretty ridiculous. There I am sending my kids to school to pledge their allegiance to the flag on a daily basis, going to baseball practices and creating perfect little Americans, having spent the last 5 years paying my tax dollars dutifully and without the right to vote and influence what happens with all of that hard earned cash, and yet the crazy immigration system still stands in our way.
Ok. rant over. I love where we live, really I do.
On a positive note, the weather over Labor Day weekend is fab. We lap it up while swimming, playing tennis and soccer with the boys, catching up with friends and grooving to the local band ‘Vinyl‘ at the Homestead Music Festival. The festival is cool. Quite grungy and very low key. The band is awesome. They remind me of the Average White Band and so I’m excited to find that AWB are playing at Yoshis in San Francisco at the beginning of November and buy tickets right away.
The boy’s highlight of the past few days (remembering that the way to a mans heart is through his stomach), is the sticky lemon chicken that I make, using a Gordon Ramsay recipe that M has found on YouTube. It’s the first time I’ve ever cooked to a YouTube video and it makes it quite a fun interactive experience. I use gluten free soy-sauce and agave nectar, instead of the honey. The result is delicious and we eat the chicken on a bed of roasted rosemary potatoes with fresh rosemary from the garden. Yum!
As I cook the chicken, M takes the boys up the road to our friends house where they have just acquired 6 chicks. The boys are so excited to have seen the chickens, but M deems it inappropriate to discuss it over dinner in case they make the connection that the cute fluffy things that they just saw are what we have sitting on a plate in front of us. Funny.
The lunchbox successes continue. I venture into the land of hot soup in a thermos, previously unchartered school lunch territory. It helps that the thermos is a Harry Potter one – the new household craze. I also try out a few new g-free products and add these to my ‘products that we love‘ page.