For the past 11 years, I have managed one of the largest annual events in Central Park – Japan Day. It’s a single day event celebrating the culture of Japan, that gathers on average 50k+ people. My staff of 30+ would work nearly 36-48 hours straight to load in, operate and strike the event (over 30 tents, generators, sound system, LED screens, food & activity tents, signage, and so much more).
Every year, the event falls on Mother’s Day, so every year I miss the chance to indulge with my family, even though seeing the handmade cards displayed at 4am and their faces for a fleeting a moment through the massive crowds have always been a delight. I even worked through it following my treatment 8 years ago, as my 30 radiation treatments ended on April 17th. What with the pandemic canceling the event this year (which was bound to be stellar given the 2020 Tokyo Olympics), I was looking forward to the moment I’ve always craved – homemade eggs benedict (which Graham has mastered).
But starting last Saturday, the day after my last radiation treatment, I started experiencing extreme acid reflux, which my oncologist through tele-medicine diagnosed as mucositis, and can take 2-8 weeks to subside. The effect? Extreme pain any time I eat or drink anything.
This has turned my diet to watermelon, yogurt, pedialyte or Recoup (see http://www.recoupbeverage.com) and Coke – thank you Katherine Marks! So while I’m losing weight, down 8lbs so far, my stomach growls so much that it can almost be heard over zoom meetings. I sleep until about 3-5am and then have to move to the couch to continue sleeping upright.
Meanwhile, my med intake, which before all of this was only one pill a day, has now turned into 5-6. And I’m starting to feel hot flashes, but with the nervousness about the virus, I’m checking my temp 2-3 times a day (still 97.6). I’m hoping to get an appointment next week to see if I have the antibody.
So my indulging tomorrow will be more time at our garden, which is what’s been helping me stay sane through all of this, just as it did eight years ago when Jenny saw my bald head and gave me a plot.
But since May is the month of Mom (my birthday is on the 30th!), I’m hoping to indulge on those eggs Benedict then. In the meantime, I’ll be working on my killer bod, keeping busy with my work from home and finding zen once again in the garden. All in all, it’s still a pretty wonderful time.
Happy Mother’s Day to all moms of all kinds out there. As I feel all caregivers at this time should be celebrated, so please indulge if you can.