Monday, November 29, 2010

Men Are From Mars

Anyone who has ever read “Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus” knows that men have a fundamental need to fix things. It is difficult for them to just to sit back and do nothing when there is something wrong. Particularly when it’s something wrong with someone they love.

Every since I received the diagnosis, Robbie has been in “fix-it” mode. Except there is one small problem. He can’t fix the one thing he really wants to fix. So he's had to displace his need to fix. Over the weekend he researched what types of things can be done around the house to prepare for chemotherapy. I think most people know, but chemotherapy breaks down your immune system. This will leave me vulnerable to bacteria and infections so it’s important to limit exposure to viruses. The cleaner my environment, the better.

He came home from Bed Bath and Beyond yesterday with a humidifier, cleaners, and a new mop. He was disappointed that they didn’t have the HEPA filter he was hoping to get and plans to order that online. He also spent yesterday doing laundry, bleaching surfaces, and cleaning our bedroom. He’s also informed me that once chemotherapy starts I can’t garden, cannot have cut flowers in the house, can only have meat that is well-cooked, and that the dogs must be bathed regularly.

I had mentioned to him that I would like a TV for our bedroom since odds are that I’ll be resting a bit in the near future. I was thinking it would make a great Christmas gift for me. He is a man of action - the TV is already on order and will be here later this week. We had also talked about painting our bedroom sometime soon. It was still "contractor white" from when we moved in. As I sit and type this, he is upstairs painting a lovely shade of green he picked up at Home Depot called "Restful."

It is only for the sake of humor that I make light of his obsession with preparing a sanctuary for me. I cannot express how much I appreciate that I have a husband who is a positive force and wants to be on the front lines fighting with me. As my friend Erica and I often joke, I have the “BHE”. (Best Husband Ever).

In other news, the word is out. I’ve been having “the talk” with all the people I need to have it with – family, boss, co-workers, and friends. I appreciate those who have the ability to share my dark humor during this time. Today, as I was grabbing M&Ms out of the candy bowl at work, one of my co-workers said to me “Don’t be spreading your cancer in the M&Ms!” This made me laugh out loud.

Many people don't even want to talk about it. Heck, if it weren't me, I probably would be that person. I can understand why it's an uncomfortable topic. No one wants to talk about something that makes us acutely aware of our own mortality. And I also understand that many people just have no idea what to say. To those folks I say gifts will easily take the place of kind words. Send cookies or chocolate - just no cut flowers please :)

In all seriousness, I have gotten many E-mails, posts, calls, etc. with an amazing amount of support. I always say that I'm surrounded by the best group of folks a girl could know. You don't know how every little ding on my blackberry with a new post makes me smile and lightens the weight of the world just a bit.


  1. Kelly, your Robbie sounds wonderful and I can't wait to finally meet him! A+ on the green for the bedroom my favorite color. I love you and your sprit. Again thank you for being strong and sharing this! Laughter is always the best medicine. Positive vibes from West Virginia!

  2. I just kept thinking BHE the entire first half of this post. Too funny. But yet so sweet! As you're going to need to know everything you're touching & using - I beg of you to leave the freaking labels on things! For example hair gel can be mistaken for hand sanitizer. Super glue could be mistaken for lip gloss. Just things to keep in mind. :)It would be a tad bit weird if the dogs looked like Cameron Diaz in There's Something About Mary or your lips were superglued together & you not being able to tell the dogs to stop eating DVDs. That would just not be right. Did I make you smile out of this little bit of non-sense? :)

  3. Kelly, first rule of thumb...NEVER advertise how good your man is!!! ;-)

    Hang in there girl! There's a great bottle of wine at the end of the tunnel!!

  4. Kelly, I'm so sorry that your are going through something like this. A good man right by your side will truly help, I know this from experience. It sounds like you have a positive experience and that is most important. Keep up your faith and you are in my thoughts and prayers.

  5. Cookies? Hell, I'm sending you a new Garden Gnome. LOVE YOU!

  6. Kelly,
    Sorry to hear your news. I have had type 1 diabetes since I was 5 years old and through all the troubles the disease has brought, staying positive is the best thing I can tell you to do. The positive energy you feed off of helps your mind and body to be able to handle all the trials of the battle. Hope you and Robbie can find happiness this holiday season and I will keep you both in my thoughts and prayers.