We’ve been watching John Adams this week, and I just wanted to let you, my internet comrades, know that it’s a damned fine miniseries. It’s moving and well-acted, and has both of us interested in refreshing our memories of American history.
1. Attend the World Grits Festival
So I just left work to walk to a doctor’s appointment – only to get to K Street and discover that it’s blocked off between 19th and 21st – cop cars, police line tape, the whole shebang. I asked a friendly officer what was going on, and he said that there was a suspicious package, and could we all please move off the street corner. Back to work for me!
My grandpa is in the hospital right now due to some gastrointestinal bleeding. Mom doesn’t think it’s too serious – she said he was up and around and complaining about his clear liquid diet – but we’re still concerned. He’s in his late 80s and somewhat worse for wear – which is just fine, considering that he only retired 9 years ago! It’s times like these when I feel very far away from my family, and that makes me sad. My best friend lost her grandmother late last week, and I know she’s experiencing similar feelings – wanting to be with the family, but unable to do so because of distance and grown-up obligations.
Last night I listened to an interview with Dr. Dennis McCullough about his new book, Your Mother, My Mother, which deals with end of life care and advocates a slower, more contemplative path for treatment than is normally practiced. In the interview, he talked about how aggressive treatment for those in their 80s and later seems to reduce the patient to a disease process – rather than empowering them to live their lives, it instead reduces the life to cycles of treatment and recovery. He advocated a more reflective approach, letting the elderly make informed decisions rather than pushing aggressive treatment that might extend their life at the cost of life’s quality, at least in the short run. At this point I’m far from involved in these conversations, but this seemed to be an important and useful perspective as my family approaches the end of life period with my grandparents.
Also, I would really like to give my grandpa a hug.
This is our last weekend of entertaining for awhile after hosting my family, then Shane’s family, and then two grad school friends this weekend/week. I have to say that friend visitors are muuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuch less stressful than family, especially friends who are totally happy to just chill out. On Friday we danced our butts off at the Black Cat in an uncharacteristically late night of going out – in general we’re headed to bed by 11, and not much later on the weekends. Yesterday there were long walks on the Four Mile Run path, video messages for Keems, a visit to Michigan and Iko, custard at the Dairy Godmother, fabric shopping, and the triumphant arrival of Angela! Today we had brunch at Tallula and I had the most incredible breakfast sandwich, then we delivered Angie and Soy to their respective destinations – Angie will interview at Mason tomorrow, and Soy will be here until Wednesday for Computers in Libraries. We’ve had a lot of beer, a lot of Rock Band, and a lot of quality relaxed time, and in general it’s been wonderful.
I may have commented on this before, but one of the things that I really love about our grad school friends is that we can go months -or longer – without seeing each other, and then pick up right where we left off. While there are many things to love about our friends, this in particular is an excellent trait.