I had taken the precaution of painting two of everything–one for him and one for me. I’ve discovered that often people don’t really value a little painting that comes naked and unceremoniously in the mail, so I always make one for myself.
So I’m putting in the first version I couldn’t stand, and now the second version that I really like. I thought I couldn’t alter the early one, as I had varnished it, but after a good sanding, it took new paint just fine. Then I added a little something playful and changed the title. Voila.
The problem was a too-rough surface–my reds/yellows/pinks/oranges weren’t blending, and the shading just blobbed. I’d painted over the pleasant mountain scene originally contained by the frame so I could paint something I thought would go with the wonderful carving. But it was on plywood, very hard, very rough.
They were unusually beautiful, several different colors, half-open in perfect blooms, long sturdy stems visible through the glass vase. I said to him, “What incredibly lovely roses!”
There are things to work through after fighting cancer, things that blind-sided me. Finishing treatment was kind of like having a baby: I’d studied up on the pregnancy and birth process, knew what sort of pain to expect when, so it wasn’t too scary when my experience matched what I’d read. And I had all kinds of support, at the hospital and from my husband and staff at work (I was the director of a county public library system) especially. But when we came home with a baby, I was completely flummoxed: Now What? Overwhelmed by a new sense of personal vulnerability and responsibility, I experienced a flood of unexpected emotions, not all of them positive.
Several weeks ago, one of my doctors put me on a daily Prevacid routine to prepare mystomach for the apparently very acidic Fosamax (to counteract incipient osteoporosis). Although I have never been particularly allergic to anything, I seem to be one of those people with a hypersensitivity to the recent wonder drugs. Still, an antacid didn’t seem like something to worry about, since I never had a problem with Tums or Pepcid AC.