Thursday, August 11, 2011

Big changes

It's been an exciting week here at our house.  Azalea and Eleanor started practicing at their new preschool/daycare!  They will begin attending full-time on August 22nd, which is the day that Ian starts going back to school full-time.  Our house is full of excitement right now.  Big changes coming our way.  It is very, very fun.

Eleanor will be a butterfly.  She is one of the most verbal of her classmates, and possibly one of the older kids.  She will not be long with the butterflies before becoming a ladybug.  In the meantime, the butterfly teachers are fantastic, and Eleanor has already found some favorite activities.  Today was her third practice, and she stayed with the butterflies all by herself for a whole hour.  She didn't even cry!  I think she'll do well with the increased socialization once she adjusts to the new faces and things.

Azalea will be a dragonfly.  Today was her first practice with the dragonflies, so Ian stayed with her.  He was VERY impressed by the education-quality of the dragonfly care.  As a mechanism to dismiss the kids to the next activity, the teacher asked them to name what letter certain words started with.  When an "A" word came up, she piped up, "And MY name starts with the letter A!"  It was a proud moment for both father and daughter.  Tomorrow she will have a practice all by herself.  She is SO ready for this change.    

Ian and I think the hardest part about the daycare transition will be the sister relationship.  Azalea and Eleanor are best friends, but now they will be in separate classrooms.  I think this will be good for the big girl, but the little girl might suffer at first.  It will be good that the learning is tailored to their respective ages; I just hope we've laid the foundation for the outstanding sister relationship so that it continues.  Forever.    

I must say that the most adorable part about all of these changes is Ian.  He is so, so excited, and that makes me excited.  And I am so proud of him:  he found a new GI bill for which he qualifies, and it is paying 80% of his tuition plus a monthly living-expense stipend!  Wow.  What a rockstar.

Me?  Thankfully I don't think I have any changes, except supporting my family members through theirs.  I am biking to work almost every day (no more lung tightness--that's a pleasant change), and my hair is so long that I really ought to get a haircut (another pleasant change).  I am being productive at work and home, from manuscripts being reviewed at scientific journals (change) to having the toy room all organized and tidy (change).  My range-of-motion is even good enough that I can reach the top shelf (change).  I feel so good that I'm taking a road trip this weekend to Ann Arbor for a wedding (change).

I still have herceptin treatment every third Wednesday, but it's not so bad.  I bring a project, and I have lots of friends at the clinic.  It's almost a social engagement.  Almost.  My last treatment will be the first Wednesday of November.  Let the count down begin.  And then we'll start a countdown until port removal, which will be at my discretion but probably not until at least October 2012 (40% chance of recurrence of inflammatory breast cancer in the first 1-2 years, therefore why rush the port removal?).  Ah, port removal.  The best change of all.

Poke tally:

port  36
right arm 12
tummy  6
left arm  6
right breast 2++
left breast  1+
superior vena cava 1
T9 vertebral body  1


  1. Exciting changes! Hooray for Ian and the girls going to school! How fun to get a haircut too. Can't wait to see it. Have a great time in Ann Arbor and a safe trip, Heather!

  2. The picture is my favorite part of this entry. I love your family.

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  4. Sounds positively fabulous. I'm sure the girls will love daycare and continue to be the best of friends!

    Glad to hear you continuing to sound like your active, productive, H-Bomb self. I know you are glad to feel things getting back to 'normal'.

  5. Exciting positive change!!! Heather, you weren't in the same classroom as your sibs, and look how close all of you are!!! Heidi & Russ did well with all your family games, camping trips, etc...I cannot imagine that you cannot meet or exceed the promotion of sibling closeness with your girls!!!!

  6. My apologies to you and your public - certainly I've interrupted your next blog post . . . can't wait to read it, hope you get some rest tonight :-)