Wednesday, June 25, 2008

The North Atlantic Sand

The beach cottage is 600 square feet, but its design seems to keep that a secret. Tall ceilings with quiet fans that spin lazily in the warm summer air give you a feeling of vast, open space. With central air, elegant paint and furnishings representative of a Pottery Barn summer catalogue spread, this is far from the "family summer cabin" days I spent as a kid. Back then, the summer cottage was a log cabin in Minnesota with no running water and sleeping quarters in a tiny attic space. But now, thanks to the generosity of friends, the idea takes on a whole new (and far more luxurious) meaning.

The weather is perfect -- warm but not stifling. The rain and thunder rolls in surprisingly on our schedule, giving us the ability to be outdoors as we wish, and making the perfect moment arrive for VB's fist film experience -- complete with a darkened living room and "The Little Mermaid" on DVD. Vast amounts of popcorn is consumed as the rain does what it needs to outside, leaving just in time for our next outdoor adventure.

What adventures the outdoors bring -- a zoo alive with baby bears and kangaroos that give VB plenty to talk about. Mini-golf that gives VB a taste of his grandfather's favorite past time.

And the beach -- gone is the vision of the crowded, muggy, sun-screen smelling environment I despise. Instead the vast ocean greets us with minimal company but the seagulls and waves. Decked out in sun-proof swimwear and with our sun-proof tent for shadowy afternoon naps, I am free to listen to the waves and stand on the rocks staring at the horizon, which shows itself in my favorite shade of blue. VM frolics in the ocean, while VB smiles and digs and laughs and plays.

The moments are perfect, like a string of rare jewels.

Now I know what vacation feels like.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

2 AD

BC = Before Cancer

AD= After Diagnosis

Here we are -- two years later. Granted, the anniversary if VB's first seizure that began our cancer journey is the 18th -- but when a life-altering event takes place on a holiday, it's easy to assign value to the day, not the date.

Recently, things have happened that are too good to be true. First -- and most important -- Vampmommy got a job! As some of you many know, her gainful employment was one of the sacrifices we accepted to be able to engage in the needed battle. However, with the battle behind us, VM overcame the current state of the economy and landed what should be considered the perfect gig -- that of a Patient Navigator for our local branch of the American Cancer Society. Who better to help cancer patients and families navigate the system then someone who did it as well as she did?

The second moment of wonder came this morning. The day VB had his seizure, the plan for the morning was originally for myself, my dad and my brother to have breakfast at a local Irish Pub. It didn't happen obviously -- and Father's Day last year was spent largely in the hospital. But today, with the Pogues playing in the background, we gathered at the very spot we had intended to two years ago, and had the breakfast I had been waiting for.

There is more -- on the actual date-anniversary of VB's diagnosis, we will be frolicking on the beach in our first vacation as a family ever. There are also other things "afoot" that can't be spoken of yet, but promise to push us closer to a stability that has seemed foreign to us.

All of this is leading to something I'm no longer used to thinking about -- the future. Do we dare dream again? Do we finally take our eyes off what's right in front of us, and look instead to the horizon?

Here's to leaving behind, looking ahead, and dreaming once again. Happy Father's Day to my fellow Daddy-Bloggers!

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Hairdresser on Fire

Vampboy's first haircut. Ever.


(Thanks to Vampmommy for the video....And Brenda for the cut!)