It’s been a long few months. Like many we’ve had vacations canceled, holidays at home and anxiety over the state of our world. Couple that with broken limbs, infection, and the family ride on the cancer roller coaster…we needed a mini retreat.
It’s not that we don’t like to vacation with Chris. In fact, he’s one of my favorite travel partners. With Chris adventures comes deep conversations, soothing silence, good coffee and the occasional disgusting Waffle House next to an equally questionable motel. Although he did get the prize for best motel stay on our honeymoon in New Mexico.
My second travel buddy though is E. With E comes those same deep conversations. Did you know the Stegosaurus has 24 spikes? Zero silence. Zero. And smelly boy smells. But E like his mama prefers hotels, charcuterie boards, pools and room service. The child even knows what wine to order me. Malbec please.
So when the news came that E was getting his cast off, we said adieu to Chris and set off for a wonderful and slightly overpriced weekend.
Being with E is equally exhausting and relaxing. There are no lulls in conversations unless he’s watching videos on reptiles or mythical creatures. Both of which need to be done with only one foot in the air and humming a Queen song. The rest of the weekend is spent chattering non stop about the hippocampus, singing, complaining about starving to death 30 mins after eating a full meal, and swimming for hours and hours and hours.
I came prepared with wine plus we mixed up our time visiting with our dear friends Mr Drysdale and his lady love. We got so used to seeing them every Friday when I was home recovering, that my heart just needed a squeeze, or two.
It’s important for me to provide these memories for E. For him to have moments when he can just be a kid. Not a kid with a sick mom. This time around cancer lingered on the edges as I didn’t want to take the risk of infection with dipping in a pool. Nor am I totally confident with myself sans hair and plus poundage. (Thanks chemo) This resulted in a mini breakdown. E is a tough little soul. He typically handles this cancer shit in stride. But even the strongest of 9 yr olds wants his mom to have hair, self esteem and energy. After lots of cursing (yes we let him swear when appropriate and this was appropriate dammit) and crying, we dried our tears and headed back to the pool. Pretending to be the Last Water Bender fixes everything.
His smile. That’s all that matters. Cancer has stolen a lot from us but I refuse to let it steal his smile, childhood, hopes and dreams. Whether that means making memories at home or over gourmet mac n cheese. Bring on summer. We have lots of escapes planned and next time I’ll pack my confidence.
Special thanks to T and B for making the weekend so wonderful. And to Evan for always making mama feel beautiful. You rock kid.