November 18, 2008
In farming communities before heavy mechanization (at least in the South, which is as far as my familiarity goes), when things were getting a little easier, you might say "I'm working the short rows, now." This presumes that the field or garden was probably set slightly on an angle, as opposed to sitting like a perfect rectangle. As you neared the end of your assigned work--plowing, hoeing, picking--your rows would get shorter and thus the work would get a little lighter. Tired workers always looked forward to the short rows.
So here Erin and I sit, looking at a short row. It's not the last row, because we have daily radiation sessions starting tomorrow (I've heard the number ten kicked around, but not confirmed by anyone in charge) that will require daily drives to Houston. Nevertheless, considering that we have worn the plow for the last five days, dragging it up and down the furrows with little rest, we are terribly excited to get to this short row.
Nothing about this visit to Houston has been easy, and it is a tribute to Erin worth singing from the rooftops that she has borne it all with determination and occasional wisps of humor. Luckily, we have had many blessings in the form of people willing to strap on the plow and pull with us. The Rosses, along with Bailey Scherr, took the long cut home from Victoria on Sunday, detouring through Houston for multiple games of Flinch and a nice dinner. Elaine and Nico braved Houston traffic yesterday for the fourth day of chemo and the nifty transfusion add-on that guaranteed us a full twelve-hour day. Hopefully a red blood transfusion will give Erin the boost she needs.
I don't want to leave the impression that Erin has laid about enduring with grim determination all day everyday since last Thursday. It's just that the fun-to-unfun ratio has been rather low. We did manage to sneak away on Sunday morning (while we were waiting for bed control to call and let us know they had space for us). Can you guess where we went?