I started my afternoon out yesterday heading out to get my bi-annual mammogram. This is not something I particularly enjoy, but one of those necessary evil things, ya know? It certainly would make things a bit more pleasant if I didn't have to walk to the Vince Lombardi Cancer Center to get the the mammography place. Rather than name cancer centers after famous people who died of cancer, I'd be much more encouraged if they were named after people that fought cancer and won. But, it was nice of Vince and/or his family to give the money for the cancer center, so, there's that. After getting mammogrammed, I have to go in to get an ultrasound, apparently, I've got so many cysts that mammograms just don't really do the trick. So, I had to wait in the ultrasound waiting room for my turn and there must have been some hold-up, because I ended up sitting there for 45 minutes wearing my jeans, a hospital gown with the opening in the front and a really really big housecoat reading old people magazines. Finally, after getting a refresher course on the whole Tom and Katie break-up yet again (I'm sorry, but poor Suri doesn't have a chance in hoopla growing up sane) I finally got called in. The ultrasound tech introduced herself, get me situated and all that stuff, and I was thinking she was the same one that did my ultrasound 6 months ago, but didn't mention it. She turns on the screen, takes one look at my boob scan and says, "Oh, I remember you, you're got a LOT of lumps." Yeah, she didn't recognize my face, but she could immediately identify my lumpy boobs. I'm sure she's lots of fun at parties.
After getting scanned and such (the girls got a thumbs up for another 6 months, in case you were wondering) I headed over to Walmart to return some stuff. While in the return line, I saw a former neighbor and we did a little catch-up. Last I'd spoken to him, his wife had just been diagnosed with breast cancer. Apparently, she ended up with a double mastectomy and has been living in a care facility since June, she hasn't even been home during that time and is unable to walk. He was picking some things up for her at the store, he had rented a medi-van for the night and was next heading to the home to pick her up so she could go to their high school daughter's Christmas concert that evening. Their daughter didn't know he was doing this and it was going to be a surprise for her. All I could think about is how sad it was that something that so many kids took for granted, their parent attending a school event, was a highly complicated surprise for Morgan. Life is so unfair sometimes.
After my returns, I picked a few things up at the store,that's when I smacked the service dog in the head. It wasn't really, 100% my fault, the dog was kind of being an aisle hog. I'd managed to slip around the side of it with no problems, but then when I continued to walk down the aisle, I swung my arm back and managed to smack it in the head. The dogs owner didn't see it happen and I thought it would just sound weird if I apologized to the dog, so I just continued on my way. But, let me tell you, when I had to go back up the aisle, you can bet his furry little butt wasn't hogging the aisle again. That dog learned to respect my floor space!
Angel #4 managed to talk me into going to the high school Christmas Concert that evening. I didn't have any kids performing, but WE's girlfriend is in both the band and choir, and I knew some of the other kids as well. They all did a beautiful job, though it was kind of a bittersweet moment for the band director. Half an hour before the concert started was the school board meeting, the meeting where the superintendent was proposing that the high school band director get laid off. WE went to the board meeting, just to see how things played out and he said those who were in favor of keeping him on had a very pathetic case and things didn't look too good for him. As much as I like the guy and can tell that he loves teaching music, I can't justify his job either. Our district has more music teachers than it really needs and when times are tight, cutbacks need to be made. They may not be popular decisions, but a sign of a true leader is when they have the guts to make decisions other people may not like. It's good to know that we've got a guy in charge that is willing to put the good of the district ahead of the wants of individual staff members. Afterall, school isn't about individual teachers and their wants and needs, it's about educating our children as best as we are able.
Anyway, I also saw our neighbor again and got a chance to chat with his wife a bit. She looked pretty good, besides the whole being in a wheelchair thing. Her face looked filled out and healthy, not that thin, cadaverous look I've seen in some cancer sufferers when you know that they're not going to be around much longer. I've seen that look too many times. So, I hope Michelle is around yet for a good long time, I know she would love to see her daughter graduate high school and begin her life as an adult.