Monday, August 08, 2011

A good shellacking

It's been about three years since I've had a professional manicure, but last week I had some time to kill while I was in Fort Worth for an education workshop, and my fingernails were actually sorta grown-out and healthy, and I'm in-between piano gigs, so what the heck... I had heard that the new manicure rage is "shellac", and that it's super-durable, so I thought I'd try it.

I don't want long, fake fingernails, not now and not ever. It's just not ME. And they get in my way; everything I do that I'm good at, I do with my fingers and hands, so I have to be able to use them. Anyway, it's been a few days, and I have to say -- this stuff is AMAZING. Not a chip, not a scratch... they look exactly the same today that they did when the tech finished with them.


I've been driving back and forth to downtown Dallas every day now for about four days in a row to check on my Pop. Mom's with him down at Baylor, of course, but things are pretty delicate right now with his health. His cancer is in remission, but the ensuing graft-vs-host issues and childhood infections like chickenpox all over again have just taken a very heavy toll on him.

It's not about me, obviously, but this is MY blog, so yes, this WILL be about me. I have to have somewhere to decompress.

I am busy. And tired. I'm not sleeping well anyway, because I'm worried about my dad.


In times of family stress, the cracks tend to show more readily. Old wounds, imagined slights writ large, visit us like nighttime hallucinations, and no-one can make us believe they aren't real. If only there were a way I could gently wipe the filmy residue away from the hearts of the ones I love most, so they could leave behind the fear and isolation that is SO. UNNECESSARY.

But I can't change any of it. I just have to navigate it. And try not to let any of it stick to me.


I'm going to go over to my mom's to sleep tonight. She normally comes home from the hospital at night after Pop goes to sleep, but he had a really awful night last night, so she wants to stay with him this time. They have a little dog at home, though, so Alice and I are going to go take care of Coco.

Tomorrow, assuming all is well with Pop, I'm going to meet my best friend from college, Emily, at Grapevine Mills Mall for a couple of hours.


I think that, sometimes, the gifts that God gives us are the actual struggles and hard things... because without having been through the struggles and hard things, how can I be of any help at all to others enduring the struggles and hard things?

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