A Hundred Gs, Part II

January 21, 2011 at 7:57 PM (Family, friends, Help, Karma, Silver Lining) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , )

We ate so many of these it's scary. And delicious.

A Hundred Gs, Part I.

On Thursday night before Christmas, while Mr. Wonderful and I were just settling down to another exciting read of The Deathly Hallows with the cherubs, the doorbell rang. Seven o’clock? On a weeknight? (Good grief, I hope it’s not carolers – usually four or five glöggs into  their celebration, they force you to stand, freezing, in the doorway and smile inanely while they try to remember the words to “Good King Wenceslas”. Erm, sorry — back to the story.)

Mr. W went to open the door, and up the stairs trooped old friends, neighbors, new friends, their families and kids, totaling about ten merrymakers. After hugs and introductions all around, the Organizer, I’ll call her, and her daughter passed me a big folder full of notes and drawings, plus a beautiful, handmade card with a big wad of cash. “What’s this?” I asked.

“We know you already bought your boots, but a bunch of your readers and supporters got together and took up a collection for you, so you have some mad money to have fun with. Buy clothes, books from your reading list, take your boys out for dinner, whatever you want. Just enjoy it,” Ms. O said.

It was a big pile of money, and I was really floored. See, I’m not used to being the center of attention, and I felt very humbled by everyone’s generosity. More hugs all around, and wishes for Happy Holidays, and they were off. I felt very warm and fuzzy as we went to find out what the Dark Lord was up to that night.

It wasn’t until the next morning, during a lull in the packing for our weekend trip to Norman-Rockwell-gorgeous Vermont, that I had time to sit down and really examine the folder full of notes. Not only was there the beautiful card and generous gift from those who gave cash, but there were at least ten more notes, checks, and gift cards from other blog-readers and assorted supporters from all over my life: neighbors, friends-of-friends, college friends I haven’t seen in twenty years, Mr. W’s co-worker friends. I was rendered completely speechless. (And you can imagine how difficult that is.)

My initial reaction was, “I don’t deserve this. I’m going to donate it to Ovations.” Mr. W talked me out of it: he said, “These are people who gave to YOU to help you feel better while you’re feeling horrible. They want you to spend it for yourself, to make you happy. Use it, enjoy it. You deserve it.” I felt guilty, I felt greedy, but I could feel the love in all the notes, heartfelt kids’ drawings, and expressions of uplifting support, so I stopped.

And switched it to gratitude. I know that people who love us, people who read my blog, wish there were something they could do to help me get through this disease. So when the opportunity arises to bring casseroles, Christmas cookies, or donations to the Carcinista Couture Collection, they jump. They help. They get gifts from giving, too. That’s what the whole Christmas-present thing is all about.

Gratitude. I’m full.

With heartfelt thanks to Ms. O and her co-conspirators, The Instigator (BKJ), TLP, TEA, SHB, SM, SMH, KFS, JQP, JBB, H&GP, JPW, JWF, HM, K&RS, DS, and anyone else, in my chemo-brained stupor, I might have missed. You have no idea.

Photo credit here.

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  1. Maggie said,

    Beautiful, Sarah. You’ve given them a gift by accepting. That was the first advice we got on the cancer trip, and it’s really been the best advice I have ever taken. Thank you….for accepting.

  2. Danielle said,

    How absolutely wonderful! I’m so happy for you and you are always in my thoughts and prayers. You are great! So glad for the update- I stopped checking so much and then I get on and have 2 posts to read! Yeah.
    It shouldn’t be a surprise that you have great friends and supporters being you’re great.
    Enjoy yourself girl and thanks for inspiring so us!

  3. Jennifer said,

    Love you!! So happy to be able to help in some way, all the way from Georgia.

  4. Mr. Wonderful said,

    You deserve it. And I am so glad that you were also able to enjoy it.

  5. Emily said,

    You deserve it all. I am glad you are surrounded by so much love.

  6. Dawna said,

    I enjoyed reading this post to Brea, Casey and Tina this morning. So happy you received and enjoyed your gifts!


  7. Nancyspoint said,

    Sarah, I was glad to find you had posted again! I was even happier to read about your good news. I’m thrilled you are feeling better and things are looking up! And your husband was absolutely right in his advice to just accept what people offered you. Sometimes accepting is so hard to do! This reminded me of the holiday movie, “It’s a Wonderful Life.” Have you seen it? Didn’t realize your life was like a movie did you?? Friends pitching in to help out, pretty darn nice. Happy New Year to you and yours.

  8. Donna said,

    One of the best things I learned from my own ovarian cancer experience is how to accept kindness from people. I just said anybody, anywhere, doing anything nice — I’ll take it!

  9. Ann said,

    Wow, that’s fantastic. How did it get arranged? I’d have donated had I known about it. However, knowing you dissed me on your recent visit to my part of the world might have made me think twice. 🙂

    You are a special person, Sarah. You are loved and people want to show you that.

  10. Crystal said,

    happened upon your site and wanted you to know how much I enjoy your writing and that you have another reader who is in your corner sending cyber prayers & healing thoughts. Looking forward to reading your blog and following your life for a long time!

  11. Jennie said,

    So deserved! And so happy that Mr. W convinced you to keep it. So, tell us…what did you do with it? XO

  12. Norma said,

    It feels strange, sometimes, doesn’t it, when we’re lavished with the lovingkindness of friends and families, especially for “givers,” and I can tell, Sarah, you are a giver. Someone told me at the beginning of my OC journey that it was my turn to accept the love, support, food, gifts, cards…..you name it, for a change. It’s hard, but oh so good to be loved on.

    Thanks for giving of yourself with your words.


  13. Dee said,

    How sweet and wonderful of your friends to give you things that will make you smile for many days to come.

    You are right – it does feel odd when you a given a surprise gift for no reason other than someone loves you and was thinking about you. I think those are the best gifts of all. Enjoy.

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