Friday, November 2, 2018

Random Thoughts About Life

It's 2:30 am in Rome (7:30 pm at home) and since I can't sleep I guess it's as good a time as any to start my Rome wrap up post share some random thoughts about life.

This really has been a thought provoking few months. While yesterday (or was it the day before? I've lost track of my days!) I said never again would we fly overnight or fly such a long distance, I already started scheming (that happened at 1 am this morning) of ways to get us back here. Fly Boise to New York. Stay a few days. New York to Reykjavik and stay a few days. Reykjavik to Rome. Hubby wasn't going for it, though. Darn. I think Rome was a one and done for him. This was his trip, his must-see place, but the huge crowds and the walking and the fear of falling and the stamina issues have him quite a bit hesitant of heading out this far again. 

This is a new life for him. He was always confident in his actions, independent, walked fast (well, as fast as someone with cerebral palsy could), and never, ever, considered himself handicapped. But after his kidney failure he never regained all the strength and stamina he had beforehand. And since his kidneys are only at 60% capacity and will never get better, we are learning to live life differently. I've taken more of a caretaker role lately. I'm okay with that, but it's unfortunate that at 58 he sometimes seems like he's 78. I'm guessing if not for his camaraderie with crew members we probably wouldn't be cruising anymore. He loves the workers on the ship. Absolutely adores them. As a former high school teacher, I think being on the ship makes him feel young again with all the conversations and fun he has with the young crew members.

Each time we head out on a new trip we send a photo from our location to the group of crew we've come to know so well. We sent out our Rome picture a couple hours ago and so far we had Mariana from Mexico City tell us she just got a job at the JW Marriott and thanked us for our support and the letter of recommendation we wrote for her. We had Jelena from Serbia tell us how much she loves us and if she and her boyfriend decide to stay in China that we will have to come see her. Mou and Neville from India sent us a picture of themselves in Sydney and said they hope their next contract is in the US so we can come to see them on the ship. Clary has a picture of all the Kit Kats we sent to him on his ship in Japan and told us about his friend who works on the Crown. Niranjan said he can't wait until we (he calls us his mom and dad) get to the Grand next month to see him and told us about his best friend on the Crown. We heard from Sainor from Honduras who found out he might be getting a promotion and Sheila from Nicaragua who just finished her contract and got to go home to her little girl. Sandesh said he is now working night room service on the Crown so we've made plans to eat late a lot these next couple weeks. Sundar just joined the Sea Princess this week. Marcelino and Joffrey are still working together in the bar on the Grand. Sid is off in Saudi Arabia working at the hotel so he can make enough money to get married. Rushi is still recovering from his terrible bike accident. Renjith's baby is growing so big and he sent us his family's formal pictures - with his baby boy wearing the outfit we bought him. 

That's why we cruise. Not for the ports, not for the ship life, not to be treated to unlimited food. It's for the crew. And that's why hubby gets himself up out of bed everyday and makes the most of the day the best way he can. Some days are good days and some days aren't. Some days his frustration is at its peak and some days he is more able to just go with the flow. 

Like I've said before, each trip makes me wonder if this is the last. I think we're getting there. My role has evolved over the course of our lifetime. I've always been the planner, thinker, organizer. The one who makes sure we get where we need to go. But now I've added in making sure he is set and comfortable. Like with the hop-on, hop-off bus for example. I would have picked a different bus company with several routes, and probably made my way onto each route, but I knew how much energy he had in him. So we chose the one closest to the hotel with the fewest stops. I helped him climb the step onto the bus and found him a seat downstairs. I opened up the headphone packet, uncoiled the headphones for him, plugged it into the headphone jack, got it to the English channel, and made sure he had a safe spot for his cane before I headed upstairs. I don't mention all of that for any reason other than to document where we are at this point in our lives. We now walk slow, stay close, and keep things simple. I'm okay with that, but I'm not certain he is. I'm sure he's struggling with having to come to grips with the fact that he might actually be handicapped

But he puts one foot in front of the other (actually, one foot drags - it's called foot drop and that's what the doctor says is causing the falls) and gets up and dressed. We've seen things we never could have imagined we'd ever get to see. We've done things we never could have imagine we'd ever get to do.

It's been a great run. And if this is it, so be it. I'm so very grateful for this life we've been given. Life is flippin' amazing, isn't it?