Tuesday, December 25, 2007

It's All Sparkly, Cool

I guess I am getting kinda "girlie". I have never been one to covet diamonds and pearls and rubies and all that stuff. But my dear husband gave me a gift today, a totally unexpected gift. A gift that if you'd told me I was getting it, I would have said I didn't want. I would have said I had no use for it. I have never felt the need nor the desire for "adornment". I am what I am: a plain old Jane, ruthlessly practical, no nonsense, kind of girl. Then my husband gifted me with this:

And look! It even has tiny little sparkly diamonds down the shank. Isn't that sweet?

The pictures may not be the best quality, but it is so pretty and so sparkly. I can't believe he picked it out all by himself. And that I like it too. Our tastes are usually so different that what he likes I don't and what I do like he detests. I'm not sure why he got it for me. I mean, he's talked about it for years, but we've never had the money and well... you can see from my old wedding band that we aren't wealthy people. Poor folks just don't waste money on things like this ring. He got a really good deal on it (my son told me how much he paid, later on), but it's still more expensive than any single item I've ever owned, excepting cars and a house. I worry that he thinks he's gonna die so he wanted to go ahead and get this for me before he does. Or maybe he thinks I'm going to die because I haven't been able to get my sugar down to acceptable levels yet. I don't know... I'm just being silly, I guess.

He does start his radiation treatments tomorrow. I'm going up there with him. When I asked him if he wanted me to, he says, "They won't let you in there with me, you want to just go up there and sit around in the waiting room?", so I says, "Won't you feel better knowing that I'm out there in the waiting room?". So he looks kind of sheepish and he says, "Well, yes." So I says, "So... then I'm going with you." So that's my plan for tomorrow. He's getting up at his usual 3:30am and going to work, then he'll leave there and come get me and we'll be at the hospital by 11:15am. First they have to mark him and tattoo him for the machine and the girl said that will take about 45 minutes, then they will go ahead and do the first treatment. Since it's his very first, the girl said it could take up to 45 minutes as well. So... I will be sitting up there reading my book until they are finished with him. Then, when he's done, he will bring me home and go back to work. I know he is scared. He admitted it to me a few days ago. A very, very hard (shameful, in his eyes) thing for him to do. Men are so weird and funky about those kinds of things. It's just weird. I mean, what's so shameful about admitting you are scared about having radiation treatments for cancer? I would be terrified. And I would admit it in a heartbeat. In fact, I am scared. For him. For me. For Thomas.

Anyway... you want to hear something funny? This is how much my honey knows and understands me: Yesterday the History channel and Discovery and the National Geographic channel were running some really good biblical history shows. I was watching them while I was ironing Pete's work clothes and then when I was finished with the laundry I just laid down on the bed and continued watching. Stuff like that is extremely interesting to me. Anyway... as I'm watching Pete comes in to see what I'm doing and he stands there and watches with me for a while. He isn't in to all that like I am. He likes historical fiction, but I like my history hard and dry. Just the facts, Ma'am. So, like I was saying, he comes in and he's watching it, and he gets this puzzled look on his face and he looks at me and he says, "I thought you were agnostic, what are you watching this Jesus stuff for?". That just blew me away. How little my sweetie knows me or understands how I feel. So I said to him, "I do believe in Jesus. I just don't believe in organized religion."

And I do believe in Jesus. I mean, I believe there was a person named Jesus and I believe he might have tried to teach mankind a better way of living. I mean, look at it this way: for the stories to have lasted this long, for it to have made as much of an impression on humankind as it has, there must have been a person whom they began the stories about. Look deeply enough into any myth, story, belief, and there is almost always a kernel of truth to be found. I believe there must have been a person named Jesus; just like there was a real Muhammad, a real Buddha, a real Confucius. These are historical figures. We have evidence that these people existed. Just like we have evidence that King Richard III of England existed, or Pontius Pilate. I believe that if we could delve deeply enough into the past, we might find evidence of persons that humankind built the myths of Zeus and Hera and Athena around. Go back far enough and you may find a real Gilgamesh, a real Beowulf, a real Jason, a real Epona, a real Thor. Perhaps there really were Amazons or Valkyries. Or perhaps they were real people like you and me, who did unusual things, were especially great leaders of their people in times of crisis, or were the hunters, warriors, shamans, of their clans, who lead them to a better place to live; discovered something incredible like fire, like flint-working, like how to pile stones up to make a dwelling, etc. and the people remembered them, and told the stories about them and then they died and their children told the stories to their children and so on and so on. And oral traditions change. A word changed here, a sentence changed there and a larger than usual war hammer or ax becomes the hammer that Thor hurls lightning bolts with. Or the weird looking, man-killing foreigner becomes the evil, man-eating monster Grendel, whom Beowulf slew. Drop just a few words and the flood that washed away one settlement in one valley becomes a great flood that washes the whole world away. Who knows. I don't claim that it's the God's honest truth, but it is my opinion. So, yes, I believe in Jesus. I believe in God, perhaps. Perhaps believing makes it real. Perhaps when enough people believe in a God it makes that God live. I don't know.

It was just weird that my darling husband has known me for all these years, been married to me over a decade, and he still doesn't understand my kind of spirituality; still doesn't know that I believe anything. He was so shocked. He looked so confused when I told him that I believe Jesus is or was real. That I just didn't believe what organized Christian religion told me to believe. He really looked shocked when I told him that I believe that if there really is a Devil; a Satan; that he had hijacked the Christian church before it ever got started good. That he has been steering it since the beginning and laughing and rubbing his palms in glee at all the evil the "Church" has done and continues to do in Jesus' name.

I don't guess I should be too hard on the man for not knowing what I believe. I don't always know what I believe myself. Goodness knows, belief in anything is a hard thing to find sometimes. Faith has always been hard for me. I can remember lying in bed when I was a small child, like 4-5 years old, before I even started school, wondering if I was going to go to hell because I couldn't find it in myself to believe in the God that the preacher told me to believe in. I was scared to death that there might really be such a God and that I would be punished horribly for not having enough faith to believe in him the way I was supposed to. I still wonder about that sometimes. Cause I know that if utter and complete belief in God is the ticket to heaven, I'm not getting in. That kind of belief is beyond me. I suppose the one true thing that I've always believed, the one thing that has always stayed with me since I first learned it as a wee small child, is The Golden Rule:
Do Unto Others As You Would Have Others Do Unto You.
I've always tried to live by it. It is a thing that I believe in, a thing that works. It is a true thing that I believe would make the world a better place for everyone, if everyone believed in it the way I do. But I can't force people to believe it. I wouldn't want to if I could. For then, how would I be living by the Golden Rule?

Anyway... enough meandering for today. Must go get some sleep and prepare for tomorrow. I'm stressing a little bit, but I'll be fine, I'm sure.

G'nite All!


pamwax said...

The ring is beautiful and your hubby is a sweetheart for suprising you. Mine doesn't get me anything. His reason is that we do Xmas all year long. I think if he suprised me with something I would die of heart failure.

The rest of your blog...It took me a little longer to come to the same realizations that you have. It is too bad we don't live closer so we cauld hang out.

nutz4nagano said...

Nutz here Holly, the ring is absolutely beautiful. I think your husband gave it to you just because he loves you, and for no other reason. Thank you for allowing us to learn so much about you here. You are a very intelligent, open-minded, lovely person. I won't go into a long history of Jesus, but since you mentioned that you do believe in Him, I can only tell you that faith in Him will help you have the courage and strength you will need to help your husband and yourself through these trying times. He helped me get through the worst year and 1/2 of my life. I painfully watched my husband deteriorate with Parkinson's Disease, and he would cry because I had to feed him, bathe him, change him, because he was bedridden for the last 3 months of his life. He died peacefully at home where he wanted to be, with me holding his hand in Oct. '06 and the following month I was diagnosed with cancer, and underwent several months of chemo treatments, lost my hair, (which is why I haven't posted a pic of myself yet-but I will soon), wound up with some heart problems and excruciating back pain (all of which are much better now). I am cancer free now, and I am not telling you all this for sympathy, believe me, that's the last thing I am looking for - but merely to let you know that just as my faith in Jesus got me through those terrible times, it will give you and your husband, and children, the strength to get through just about anything. I don't believe He can prevent sickness or illness, or wars or other devastations, but rather give the courage and strength needed to get though those things. Holly, I will pray for a speedy, healthy, and full reovery for your husband.

nutz4nagano said...

Holly, You and your husband will be in my thoughts and prayers today. Your love and bond together will see you through this.

Some Kinda Wonderful said...

Thanks so much, Nutz. Your support means a lot to me. Bunny and Pam have also been a big help in getting me thru this time. I know I should have faith, but it's so hard for me.
He said the procedure was painless, boring, and uneventful. It only took about 30 minutes all total, from the time they called him back. He's asked them to do the rest of the treatments later in the afternoons so he can leave work early. What a sly one my man is, eh? Talk about finding the silver lining, huh?

I too wish we lived closer, Pam. What a fine time we could have.

Love you guys!

pamwax said...

I am glad to hear that tings went easy for your hubby today. I am sure things will well for him. They have made such advances in treatments that I am confident that he will be fine.

nutz4nagano said...

Holly, I am so glad to hear things went well today. Do you know how many treatments will be needed? I remember taking my 85 year old father-in-law every day for at least 21 days (except weekends). That was at least 20 years ago, and things have advanced so much now. You and your family will always be in my thoughts and prayers.

Some Kinda Wonderful said...

Hi Nutz,
Pete will have a total of 42 treatments. That means he will be done (should be done) on 02/25/08. I'm not sure what dosage of radiation he's getting, I'll have to ask him later. He's taking his after dinner nap right now. Wouldn't want to wake Sleeping Beauty, ya know?
Thanks so much for all the thoughts and prayers. I know they help. I do know it!

nutz4nagano said...

Holly, As you can see, I'm also an insomniac. I get a couple of hours here and there, and then up at 5:00 a.m. every morning. I'm so glad that your husband got through the 1st treatment with no problems, and I just know in my heart that he is going to be o.k. I'm always here for you if you need me.