Hi to my on-line gang!
Well, it seems the time is flying by, but not without medical wrinkles. I’m feeling okay, great in fact, and enjoyed my first jumping lesson on horseback last week, which was awesome fun and has me in mind of entering a horse show or two this summer. But first I need to get my stamina up enough to jump an entire course of jumps: so far all’s I managed was three in a row. It was so lovely to be part of a group again, and Gypsy really loves lessons too. Watching each other go, then having your turn, and then proudly returning to the herd. It’s just like old times!
So, feeling well, but some of my blood-work has been a bit “off”. You see, I was mismatched with my donor for the CMV virus. CMV is something *most* people have had in their life and figure it was just “the wicked bad flu”, but it’s actually a specific virus that they have identified. Anyhow, Connie took such good care of me that I never had it (or chicken pox) growing up! So, I was mismatched, but the risk/benefit analysis was made and I got the organ regardless. CMV is totally treatable in most cases. Anyhow, they’ve been monitoring my blood for CMV cells and found a few recently which means I am having weekly bloods drawn and going on some medications to counteract the virus. These *may* make my white blood cell count drop, so we’ll have to monitor closely. Our hope is to drop the CMV cells. You see, my life has always been a balancing act, and CONTINUES TO BE!
Ah so, MUSIC. Lovely music! Our show last week at the Cadillac Lounge went even better than I’d hoped with lots of supporters coming out. I got to wear my new black “wiggle” dress and leopard print shoes. I can’t recall the last time I left the house so dressed up! It felt good! Singing with the band is feeling more and more normal, vocally, and tonight we hit the stage from 6-8pm at the Cameron House on Queen street West in Toronto. I’m loving it! This is what I do! What could only be more perfect would be to sing from horseback: WAIT, I did THAT this week TOO!
Loving the spring weather too. Had Gypsy out in the back forty and crossed little streams and saw the cardinal and smelt the earth as we trotted along in the spring sunshine down the lane-way between the fields. What an HONOUR to be able to do this again — without the oxygen tank catching in the trees as we pass.
Speaking of horses, Tom and I went to Woodbine racetrack to play the ponies. I won a couple of bets (total, about $9.70) but Tom very nearly won about two hundred dollars, (except my horse beat his horse at the wire. ) Can I say that it was a pleasure to be able to walk the stairs from the grandstands to the betting window at each race? Can I also say that smoking sucks? Now that it’s outdoor season on patios and at the track, etc, I find it’s just such a yucky habit. When someone lights up I don’t recoil in fear like I used to (the smoke would make my old lungs bleed) but I just really resent that smokers are there fouling the air up, even in the non smoking section. Anyhow, a LOT of people smoke at the track so I was constantly on the run from them. Don’t want that crap in my shiny new lungs! What is it that Steve Martin once said, “Does anyone mind if I smoke? No? Does anyone mind if I fart?”
We got the yard into shape this weekend. Tom did all the digging and stuff since I’m supposed to stay away from gardening now (bacterias in the soil are bad for immuno supressed people) but we got some tuplips and daffodils at the nursery, and gave the”tiki” bar a good scraping and a new lick of paint. Tom took this paparazzi photo of me. I am wearing a mask since paint scraping is a dirty job: this is a mask that friends brought back with them from Vietnam, where apparently masks are all the rage with the ladies! Seriously. They also brought back a plaid one!
Oh, and how did I forget the Ukulele jam? A friend recently gave me a baritone ukulele which I have not put down since. There’s a Uke jam/open mic in town Wednesdays and so I took myself down there and sang a song. Everyone applauded enthusiastically and since I had a room of forty people and a microphone I told them about how this was one of the first outings for me and my new lungs. I will spread the word one room at a time if I have to!
Which brings me to my next adventure: TELEVISION. I am taking part in a television program for the W network where I tell my story. We just started shooting this week with an entire day of camera crew Monday. We got Gypsy all glammed up and they videoed me riding her. Perhaps she is camera shy, but Gypsy just wasn’t so interested in jumping which is hilarious because she loves to jump and has only ever refused about five times in twenty years. Well, so we refused on camera (in her defense, the cameraman was crouching just on the other side of the brush jump). Anyhow, After that false start we did just fine. But it was just too funny. Of all the times to refuse!
Anyhooooo…. that’s it that’s all….. until later. I’ll leave you with an impressionistic photo of Tom in his Homburg hat trackside, racing forms tucked under his arm….