Have you ever planned something, and it seemed like everything in the universe was against you completing your plans? Even the little things – planning on getting to bed early, planning on getting a full 8 hours sleep, planning on cleaning out your dresser. The very instant that “plan” gets set in your head – the gremlins come out. I can just see them – evil snickers, rubbing their hands together in pure joy as they screw up your day every possible way.
Lets go with a simple plan – cleaning out the dresser. If you have EVER done this, you know, as well as I do, it is a huge task. All the clothes have to come out, be looked at, refolded, and either replaced in the dresser, or put in the bag to go away. You are guaranteed to find, stuck in the bottom of one drawer, that shirt you were wearing that day when (fill in the blank), so you stop and reminisce for a bit. Then there is either the stack of shirts that are so small you know, deep in your heart of hearts, you will NEVER again wear them. You hem and haw, you put them off to the side – and here come those gremlins. They are that little voice in your head that says maybe just maybe one day you will again be the size you were 35 years ago when you actually last wore these shirts, and besides, there is the one in that stack you bought at the first baseball game you actually worked and paid for the tickets to, and it was a playoff game, first one the Angels had ever played in (yes, I had that shirt until Mr. Mouse decided to live in my dresser and ate huge holes in it). So you lovingly fold them, and put them in the back of the drawer. Then there are those shirts somebody gave you 5 years ago, that you have not taken out of the drawer and ever put on – so that stack goes away. Drawer after drawer, hour after hour, one piece of clothing at a time is debated on, and its fate decided.
Of course, you save the “best” for last (at least from the gremlins standpoint) – the SOCK DRAWER! Not near as loving on this monster. By now you have been at this for a couple of hours at the least, and you are beginning to realize that you are probably going to be late putting supper on the table, because what was a pretty much clean, orderly room is now piles of clothing, pulled out drawers, and half full garbage bags. You must finish – or not go to bed, because your bed is covered in stacks of folded clothes, and now a mountain of socks. You dive in. The paired socks are the easiest – you blast through those like a hot knife through butter. At last, all the paired socks are neatly stashed back in the drawer. You look to your bed, and there it is – gremlin paradise! That stack of unmatched socks. You know it well – the pink fuzzy one with butterflies that you only wore once, because the mate never made it out of the dryer alive. It has mouldered in the drawer for over a year waiting. The bright green one-you threw its mate in the trash ages ago and thought this one had followed suit. The white one with the red stripe – that belongs to your son (you hope you didn’t throw its mate out last week when you did HIS sock drawer). The five pair that actually have mates in the unmatched stack, you fold and put away. You are left with usually about half-dozen unmatched socks, and now a decision is required. Do you put them back in the drawer in the hopes their long-lost mates will return, or do you simply throw them away (since you only have about 25 pair of socks in the drawer anyway, and only wear about 4 of those)? Gremlin time! The little evil twerps get in your head, and take away any ability to make a decision away – far away. Like Siberia far away. You decide to save them from a horrid end – this time – and get all the clothes back in the drawers. Phew. Oh, but wait, there is more. You are about to leave, go into another room of your house and you see it. Yep, there is a stack of clothes on the edge of the dresser. Why? You know you stacked everything on the bed. You put everything on the bed away. The stack of clothes is unmistakably yours. The gremlins forcibly turn you around and propel you towards the stack of clothes. You stare at them, go through them, and while the evil laughter of the gremlins is almost audible you quizzically look at this stack of clothes, trying desperately to remember why you put them there, and where they need to go to complete the task you set yourself. Did you intend to get rid of this stack? Surely not, for it contains your favorite yellow shirt that you wear at least once a week. Then you remember – no thanks to the gremlins – that this is the stack of clean clothes you were bringing to put up when you got the brainstorm to clean out your dresser! Thank heavens! You dispatch the stack to its proper places, and head out of the room, whistling a little because you did it – you FINISHED! Or so you thought.
You leave your bedroom, go about your business. Cooking supper, visiting with family, messing around on the computer. Then its bedtime, and you head back to your room. You go to turn down the covers on your bed, and there is it! More evil work of the gremlins! A stack of underwear!!!! Your brain is screaming at you – “I already did that!” But there is no denying – you forgot a drawer. Now you are brushing the cobwebs out of your brain (they form quickly with the gremlins help) trying to recall if you already went through and threw out the holy pairs or not. Tired as you may be, and to the utter joy of the gremlins, you sort through the stack, discover you did that 6 hours before, fold them and put them away. Finally, a job that should take about an hour is complete, half a day later. Those pesky gremlins.
This made you smile, didn’t it? You have been there, done that, could have written this story. Well, I traveled this road this morning for a reason. I planned an information blog. I planned it to be daily. Then the gremlins called life jumped in. The information blog is still coming – I’m not ever giving up something that important. I just didn’t want anyone waiting for it to think I had forgotten – never. Cancer and major illness awareness is far to vital, and far to important to me.
So it’s coming – until then, keep on volunteering, keep on loving our patients, loving our caregivers, supporting our fighters. Get the word out any way you can – Cancer sucks – having a major illness sucks. But those illnesses are like our dressers before we clean them out – mussed, disorganized. Awareness can clean out our proverbial drawers, make the clothes neatly folded again. Knowledge – not assumptions – creates order out of chaos.
Thanks for your time today – remember the only stupid question is the one you didn’t ask.