This holiday season will be remembered for being one of the most uncharacteristic ever.
Because my parents decided to go to Florida earlier than usual, my family celebrated in late November . I had just finished five days of chemo and was neutropenic, so knew it wisest not to attend. Sadly, in the past I've landed in the reverse-isolation ward of the hospital after contracting a bug from someone, and having had no white blood cells to fight it.
So, with all the merriment over and done with, one of my sisters has invited us to share with her their holiday dinner but, as we've both agreed, without the fanfare. The dress code is simple: seasonal sweaters, your ugliest but most comfortable slippers and of course, turkey pants. "Turkey pants" is a new phrase coined by my niece in Atlanta. Turkey pants are the ones that have the drawstring that can be discretely loosened just before the dessert course. Naturally, the men are ecstatic. No ties, no collars, no belts, no limits. Call it comfort-accommodating-excess. We're grateful for the comfort, we're grateful we have accommodation and we're embarrassed over the excess.
All kidding aside, I am reminded daily of the extremes and excesses that my Sunflower Sisters and their families go through... especially poignant at this time of year. Yesterday, we sadly learned that another Sunflower Sister "got her wings". Today we're praying for a "teal" family member who is on her way. Yesterday, I communicated with a man who wonders how to prevent recurrence in his Stage 4 wife? Today, I'm awaiting for news from a Sunflower Sister in California on her latest round of chemo - a chemo which I informed her comes from the "Asian Happy Plant". Yesterday, I received a surprise "Happy Turtle" Christmas tree ornament from a Sunflower Sister who calls herself the same - and today I'm waiting to hear about the breast biopsy results from a very frightened friend.
I think we all need to ask Santa for a pair of "turkey pants" as the great metaphor for accommodating life.