This week

I have hardly knitted . . . except to mess up my two-row patterned sweater. BUT I was just deciding to frog it anyway and go to bigger needles so perhaps I hoist myself with my own petard* unconsciously? In any case, I decided at the same time to be sensible and find a fricking pattern, so that 'Onie's sweater will come out right.

But today I realized I must get some simple projects going again because I need to knit to stay relaxed. While for many of you a "mindless" pattern is a four row repeat, my idea of a "mindless" (and successful) project is one row (MAYBE two, if they're simple). So I am going to find something in that line and start making those. One idea: burp cloths. So many friends and coworkers are having babies but I honestly feel in NorCal that a hat or sweater is an unlikely choice now that we're headed into summer. On the other hand, easily washed, thick burp cloths are always useful! 8^) I should call them "blup cloths" since we had one daughter who was an infamous "blupper" well into her crawling phase. We'd find blups in the carpet, the toy box, etc. And yes, the word is onomatopoeitic, as any mother knows.

Lots of you have asked about those square knitting needles I showed you last week. Well, I haven't knitted much with them, but I like them a lot. I have to admit that I don't really know if it's because of the lovely dark walnut they are made from, or the smooth finish, or the squareness. Perhaps it's a holistic experience, and it all converges. I can use them for one of these first mindless projects!

DH has come up with a wish (among others, like "Mother-cooked meals") that his mother can fulfill (she will be with us through his first chemo round). He wants her to make him a blanket, quilted on one side and knitted on the other. Foolishly, I immediately started my campaign to get him to ask her for washable wool rather than acrylic (she would prefer not to use acrylic, no doubt), but he is convinced that no wool will ever be soft enough. It's his party, and she will be the person he negotiates it with, so I think I'll just step outside that one. 8^)

YAY! news:
This Saturday, DD#1 and DD#2 return home from college (DD#2 starts her Roonil Wazlib gigs soon after, so she'll be touring; DD#1 leaves for Mexico in a few weeks after that). The house will immediately fill up as my DMIL arrives the next day, which is, fittingly, Mother's Day stateside (perhaps elsewhere?).

Cancer news:
DH returned from Europe Thursday evening. He has learned to avoid sleep on the westbound version of the trip, so he got a good 8 hours that night, which was fortunate because he has slept quite badly from worry and anxiety. Naturally.

He had his barium CT Friday, and a visit to the GP for much needed pain meds. Both went fine, and tomorrow he goes for a PET scan (briefly thereafter to glow with the warm light of irradiated sugars they'll have injected into him--jk). Then we attend a "chemo teach," which provides us with the finer points of conduct when one is undergoing chemo. So far, I hear it's "no flossing, uncooked produce or dairy, hanging around with sick people who don't know enough to stay home, or eating crunchy or hard foods."

He is trying not to openly do everything with the stated expectation that it's the last time he will ever do this, or that he must train me in XX right now, since I might have to hold down the fort indefinitely. Avoiding this tendency is quite difficult for him, as he is afraid to hope that he will do well and the chemo will effectively vanquish his cancer. I bite my tongue many times a day, since I have decided he WILL live and CAN'T die on us. But I realize that to him, my approach might well seem rather . . . callous. Or Pollyanna-ish. So I do my best to see it his way as well as my own. When the pain and his sleeping have both begun to improve, I think it will be easier for him to have a more optimistic outlook.

Through this whole process, several people within our HMO have said, "You are getting great care from Oncology. They're the best." Now that could be self-serving, but I take it seriously. That's not a common statement (I've never heard anyone from within say that about any part of the organization!--and I like our HMO!) so I assume it's a reflection of good success rates. Pollyanna be damned.


*From my favorite non-expert/non-verified site, wikipedia:
Shakespeare used the now proverbial phrase in Hamlet. . . . In medieval and Renaissance siege warfare, a common tactic was to dig a shallow trench close to the enemy gate, and then erect a small hoisting engine that would lift the lit petard out of the trench, swing it up, out, and over to the gate, where it would detonate and hopefully breach the gate. It was not impossible, however, that this procedure would go awry, and the engineer lighting the bomb could be snagged in the ropes and lifted out with the petard and consequently blown up. Alternately, and perhaps a more likely scenario, if the petard were to detonate prematurely due to a faulty or short slow match, the engineer would be lifted or 'hoist' by the explosion.

Thus to be 'hoist with his own petard' is to be caught up and destroyed by his own plot. Hamlet's actual meaning is "cause the bomb maker to be blown up with his own bomb," metaphorically turning the tables on Claudius, whose messengers are killed instead of Hamlet.


jenfromRI said...

Ha! I use "hoist with my own petard" all the time!

My thoughts continue to be with you and your family at this tough time. I hope everything turns out well - keep us all posted.

Susan said...

Still thinking about all of you and praying for good news.

Anonymous said...

Stacie - sending good thoughts and prayers your way - Karen

Shannon said...

hugs and well wishes to you and yours from the Monkeyhouse. :)