Thursday, May 5, 2016



            We learned a couple of days ago that Kim will be receiving radiation therapy as treatment for her cancer. In one area she will have some sort of pellet inserted to zap the fast-growing cells. Less than two feet away she will be sprayed by radiation, five days a week for seven weeks. This is not good news.

            I’m wondering what difference this will make. Will Kim glow in the dark? If so, we will no longer need a night light for those bathroom visits we seniors are often called upon to make. (I’m trying to be positive here.)

            If Kim glows from the radiation, perhaps we could use her, with a few ornaments, to celebrate the Christmas season. We have heard that the radiation treatments will make her tired, so we may have to lean her in the corner.

            Will her anesthesia-driven brain fog appear as a glowing mist around her head for a week or so?

            How will her being irradiated affect her photography? Will she no longer need to use a flash? Should she wear lead?

            There are many who say that Kim already glows, even without the radiation. I recently saw her light up when she saw a baby Sandhill Crane (they are called “colts,” in case you want to know). And she glowed when she received a surprise card from a friend. And when she listened to her daughter making a confident, humane and professional business call on the phone. She glows when she is creating artwork, whether it’s weaving a bird’s nest or making a thank-you card with one of her photographs. And she glowed when she saw that I had actually cleaned my shower instead of going through the motions. (That might have been more surprise than the kind of glow I’m talking about.)

            When I picture what will be going on when Kim is being irradiated, I tend to think of a video game taking place under her skin. Maybe Pac-Man, maybe Space Invaders, with a geeky technician gobbling up or shooting down the bad guys, or maybe placing a deadly land mine in a private area. I find that it helps if I imagine that I am that geeky technician, freeing my queen from hostile invaders. In my own imagination I enjoy being her savior and hero, even while I’m struggling to make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.

            When her radiation treatment helps Kim become even more radiant, I hope that some of her radiance will rub off on me. I will continue rubbing her to help make that happen.

(My apologies to anyone with even the slightest medical knowledge.)


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