As I remove my sandals, which are barely shoes at all, I hear the TSA agent counseling me, " you're not over 75 I assume? You didn't need to take your tablet out of your bag. It's not a laptop." He is full of himself this morning, or perhaps wishing he was in another job. Always having been an anxious traveler and a rule follower I feel surprisingly relaxed today and think whatever. Passing the airport bookstore I run into Lucien from church, who taught Sunday school to both Butter and iMac when they were first graders. She is pure magic and goodness and gives me a hug, remarks to me how well Melanoma Man looks these days, remarks on my grace, which I am reticent to accept. I have time to get coffee.
Waiting in front of Starbucks for my skim latte, there is Heather with her family. She is all inclusive, frequently opening her home and heart to me, and so many others from different cultural and educational backgrounds, not requiring a resume, pedigree, a bank statement, or a list of accomplishments from me or others.
Boarding my flight, there is Bob M., recently retired priest from our church, en route to see daughter and grandchild. I hear the message. I am not alone.
I barely remember what we did on our trip North last year. Then I recall it was a much bleaker time, 3 weeks post brain radiation. I was still worrying about the potential of bleeding brain tumors, of radiation side effects, whether the radiation would work. Both boys had sore throats and colds, one boy was feverish and not sleeping. I had a urinary tract infection and a yeast infection. Mostly I couldn't wait to go home. Playing at relaxation was exhausting last summer. I feel it will be different this year. Both Melanoma Man and I are a bit more relaxed. Both of us cheery and light during the day, but haunted in our dreams. Last week I dreamt of being in a rural farmhouse with my brother Johnny Reb during a torrential storm. There was flooding and we were desperately planning an escape to safety for his young son and wife. The same night Melanoma Man dreamt he had lost our youngest son Butter in an international airport.
My plane lands. I am always surprised when the plane makes contact with the ground, pleasantly so. I call Bob S. On my cell. He is waiting in the cell phone lot for my call. Bob is my birth mother's husband and he is a Saint I think. We catch up on news and then reminisce about our first meeting almost 14 years ago. He says he liked me from the get go. He just had a feeling he says. I am feeling lucky to have this day in which Molly and Bob will care for me. Melanoma Man and the kiddos arrive tomorrow.