Thanks for Everything, Milwaukee!

Thanks for Everything, Milwaukee!

The trip to Milwaukee turned out to be loads of fun. The party to celebrate Dan and his twin brother Dave on Saturday included family and friends and plenty of food and cake and beer.

The birthday boys.

Dan and Dave.jpg


Family. (All at various points of inebriation. Ha!)

On Sunday, we scooted around South Milwaukee, Dan’s hometown. We drove through Grant Park to gawk at the beauty of Lake Michigan and grab a few small rocks from the beach to put in our landscaping, drove by the house Dan grew up in, shopped the local grocery stores for some favorite eats we can’t find where we live, and picked up a coffee table—a family heirloom—that his niece had been holding onto for us.

It was a busier day than I had anticipated, but the cooler temps and the fresh air were great. I was feeling pretty good (even though neither of us slept particularly well).

So when we got home yesterday, the first thing I did was take a two-hour nap. There’s just nothing like your own bed!

Once we’re fully recovered, we’ve got more projects to complete around the house. It’s shaping up to be a great summer. I am so glad.

A Thing I Did While Growing a Brain Tumor

A Thing I Did While Growing a Brain Tumor

Facebook tells me that on this day three years ago, Dan and I attended the Dave Matthews Band concert at Summerfest in Milwaukee. I remember it well. It was raining and only like 50° F outside. We could see our breath.

In July.

Fuckin’ Milwaukee, guys.

Anyway, we had lawn tickets but no chairs or blankets, because we weren’t anticipating the rain or the cold, slippery grass.  So I stood for the entire show. For HOURS. I wiggled and danced for a bit, walked around a little. Then stood still. Then shifted my weight from one leg to another. Then started the routine all over again.

At the end of the concert, we had to walk back to the car. My legs were tired. The car was parked several blocks away, and I remember saying to Dan, “My legs feel weird. Like I can’t walk. I don’t know if I can make it all the way to the car.”

I had no clue what was happening to me at that time. I just thought it was exhaustion and that I was really and terribly out of shape. (Even though my height, weight, and activity levels were still leaning toward the decent side of healthy because I’m stubborn.)

At that point, I had already started seeing doctors about weakness and fatigue and a bizarre sort of limp that came and went, but I wouldn’t get a fibromyalgia diagnosis for about three more months.

I wouldn’t learn I had a brain tumor for a couple more years.

I did make it to the car without aid that night. But it was hard, and I remember stifling fears that something was really wrong with me. I remember plopping in the passenger seat and sort of lifting a leg into the car because it just wouldn’t.

Anyway, I wanted to take a moment this morning to say I’ve done a lot of really hard things with a tumor in my head—a tumor that I knew nothing about. Wonder what else I can do now that I know and have doctors that know how to fight it.

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