‘Koyaanisqatsi’ and My Life Feeling Out of Whack

I’ve been having a hard time putting together a blog post in the past 6 or 7 weeks, since my sister was in the hospital with pneumonia and I wrote my most read post to date, My Sister is Back in the Center Ring. Which means I haven’t had a chance to let everyone know that after 2 weeks in the hospital, Barb was released on December 19th!!!!! Yeah!!!!!! She was even feeling strong enough to be back at work by December 23rd! Woo Hoo!!!!!

In other news…

My feelings today feel complicated and all jumbled up. My life–and many people I know–are feeling that life is truly out of whack and we are struggling to get it–keep it?–together. I remember going to see the movie Koyaanisqatsi with its Philip Glass score on the University of Michigan campus when I was a senior in high school and being blown away by how it messaged that our life here on Earth has become incredibly out of balance. I never saw the other 2 movies–Powaqqatsi and Naqoyqatsi–that with Koyaanisqatsi became the Qatsi Trilogy, but this first movie still resonates.  I will always remember how in the movie, the images are so peaceful to begin with and then everything speeds up, capturing more and more frantic-ness. There has been much in the past year that has felt frantic.

And it doesn’t feel comfortable.

I know that blogging helps me find balance in my world, but I haven’t had a chance to ‘be’ with time–and my computer–to write as of late. This afternoon, I’m claiming some time, with a small window open of Koyaanisqatsi on my computer screen and Philip Glass’ music playing through its speakers.

Here is the jumbled mess of my world in (what started as) a free write sort of way.

Friday, December 16th was the 5 year anniversary of being told definitively that my biopsy results indicated I indeed had breast cancer.  5 years. Wow. What was crazy was that the dates and days of the week totally matched between December 2016 and 2011.

Stranger was that after many, many years of being an educator, I’ve never worked Thanksgiving through COB (close of business) December 23rd (4 weeks) and then had 2 weeks vacation, returning to school January 9th. I kinda liked it, but wow it was hard to be prepared for the Holidays.

Just as my sister got out of the hospital, Terry’s uncle was back in the hospital by December 22nd and so we spent Christmas Eve and Day traveling too and from the Mayo Clinic to visit. We picked up the coolest little metallic Christmas tree on the way to take as a gift. What started out as fear that Uncle S. was on a downward trajectory, turned into major relief that his situation is treatable. The negative: the drive back to Chicago in the freezing rain with front wipers on the fritz.

We spent the night in Chicago and then headed to Michigan to celebrate a delayed Christmas for a few days with family and friends. And to leave Bleu and Zora at my parents so we could head back to Chicago for New Years and to pack…

…before finally heading to Antigua after 12 years. So cool to spend the first week of 2017 in such a beautiful place and my 49th birthday with Terry and my Antiguan family. Amazing. Bummed that I haven’t had time to savor the trip with a blog post all its own, but doing so is something to look forward to.  Have to give a preview, though!

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And then back to reality…

I’ve already had a cold and the stomach flu. Work has been intense and difficult and rewarding and exhausting–and we were furloughed today with at least another 3 days on the way. And there are whispers that we will be out 2 weeks early. Yes, we sure value education in the US. So much for not going on strike back in October.

The cool thing is that after Terry being in a period of career redefinition throughout 2016, he secured a new job in his desired field the first day back from Antigua. The challenge is that it is in Michigan, near Ann Arbor; however, he is able to stay at my parents’ home with the dogs. Sometimes, a bit of distance can do wonders for a relationship.

I don’t have the energy tonight to write yet about the political state of our country or social media in these times of troubles or immigration bans or mourning the election results. However, for the record, I went to DC for the Women’s March 2 weeks ago and I am grateful that I did. Yes, I have another blog post in the draft stages over that event, but here is another dozen pictures as a preview.

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Finally, there are a couple of people in my sphere of reality who are dealing with some serious health issues and I have yet to follow up. Mrs. Thompson, know that while I haven’t reached out (because I honestly didn’t realize what was going on there initially), both Barb and I are now aware and will be in touch soon.

Now it is off to bed! I have a PD all weekend in downtown Detroit at the Renaissance Center and need some sleep!

10 thoughts on “‘Koyaanisqatsi’ and My Life Feeling Out of Whack

  1. Pingback: Weekly Round Up: The World Cancer Day Edition | Journeying Beyond Breast Cancer

  2. I, also, have December 16th as the day I found out I had the drastic-surgery-and-go-bald kind of cancer. Exactly five years ago, too. I love that Marie’s Round Up connects us to swap stories of endurance. xoxo


    • Wow. That’s crazy that we share such a random, yet life altering date! I totally agree about Marie and her Round Up. I read all of her posts and the posts of others that she shared obsessively that first year. She was so influential in my starting to blog!! xo


  3. I totally get it, JoAnn. Sending love to you and Barb. My diagnosis day was also in December, December 17. I was tired all throughout the holiday, not because of the disease itself, but because the gravity of it all. Take care of yourself. It is definitely a crazy time all over. Much love!


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