Thursday, October 22, 2009

Welcoming the "New" Normal

Of course, there was nothing wrong with the "Old" Normal. The "Old" Normal had plenty of pizzazz. It had style. But it was lacking one big, gnarly "Thing".

After a couple months of blasting "Thing" with nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons of mass destruction, we are so far holding "Thing" at bay. But the post-war environment has been slightly rearranged, and every month we still need to launch a sneak attack on "Thing" to keep him from spreading across the land. This brings us to the "New" Normal.

Ok, so maybe the war analogy is a bit too much, but the "New" Normal is beginning to finally crystalize. Day by day I have been slowly picking up pieces of the "Old" Normal and seeing if they fit into the new puzzle. I've returned to work, almost full time. I've brought my dog Chana back into my life (with much thanks to JO for...well...everything). I've been gradually increasing my physical activity level. I even picked up my guitar for the first time in months. That said, I know that not all of the pieces will fit, and the final picture will definitely look different than before.

From the physical perspective, the 5 days per month of chemo will likely lead to 5 days of subtle misery; a slight nausea, a loss of appetite, a bit of fatigue, and, of course, frustration. But as my friend "Emmysan" pointed out to me, most women go through a very similar pattern every month, so I have no complaints! There are also several aspects of the "Old" Normal that I've yet to reengage, though I am optimistic that eventually, with time, I'll be able to forcefully press in at least some of those pieces.

From the philosophical perspective, the "New" Normal will have a pretty different orientation. It's still early, but from the outside it must be interesting to guess where this might go. Internally I'm trying not to guess, since that can get a little scary....

In the meantime, as the "New" Normal unfolds, I might not be writing as frequently, so fear not for long periods of silence. They do not indicate a turn for the worse, but more likely a turn for the better. I do once again want to thank all of my friends and family who have reached out to me in so many different ways, even simply letting me know I'm on their minds.

And keep your eyes and ears open for the eventual announcement regarding a fundraiser AGAINST cancer that some friends of mine and I are trying to organize. Good times to be had by all! Except Mr. "Thing"....


  1. HI Eric;
    I am Claire, Bruno's girlfriend. We think positive thoughts for you often. Even though I've probably only met you once or twice, I want you to know that I have always enjoyed your presence when you come for lessons. You have always been laughing! I have enjoyed hearing it and been inspired by it, even thinking of you as a role model of positivity. When I heard about your illness, I felt sad but also thought that your laughter and positive attitude will give you a healing edge.