1: often capitalized : an abode of souls that are according to Roman Catholic theology barred from heaven because of not having received Christian baptism
2a: a place or state of restraint or confinement trapping travelers in an airless limbo—Sam Boal
b: a place or state of neglect or oblivion proposals kept in limbo
c: an intermediate or transitional place or state the adolescent occupies a special human limbo—New Republic
d: a state of uncertainty The graduate was in limbo for a while, trying to decide what to do next.
e: a dance or contest that involves bending over backwards and passing under a horizontal pole lowered slightly for each successive pass
Last month I spoke about our lives in the last few years, the boat, JoAnne’s cancer and right after that we were put on alert watching Hurricane Florence form off the coast of Africa and make the long trek across the sea, to finally visit the USA.
In the few weeks after publishing that entry in August, I spent a lot of time cleaning up the boat, getting her ready for the fall trip to the Bahamas. Then Florence formed, and it appeared to be heading right for Southport, NC. The news was all over the place on possible hit locations, the NHC was all over the place, the Spaghetti models were everywhere. The only thing that was accurate was my own predictions that it would hit somewhere between Myrtle Beach and Beaufort, NC. And I was accurate about that part.
JoAnne and I started preparing the boat for a hurricane, and finally on Tuesday just before it hit, we also received a call from her oncologist’s office back in Colorado. We had four weeks to return to begin a treatment plan. A PET scan had been ordered and taken care of the Friday before. The doctors read the scans and decided she had some “area of concern” which the oncologist believed to be a recurrence.
On Wednesday morning, of “official, mandatory evacuation” and in light of a probably Category Four hurricane hitting full on in North Carolina, near to us, we packed the last of our belongings we’d not place in storage and I started the car, looked to JoAnne and said, “Where too?”
We had no idea where to go, which way to run or who would take us in for a few days. With the car running, we called her Brother down in Florida and told him the situation, and he had us come to stay with he and his wife for a few days. We knew we wanted to return to the boat before heading back to Colorado, and probably hit our storage locker once more for cold weather clothing, usually kept in storage in the summer.
We spent a week in Florida visiting with friends and her brother. When we attempted to return to North Carolina, the rivers were just cresting, roads were out, flooded and bridges damaged, roads closed, and basically those who got home to Brunswick county were already close in, and had an idea of which roads to take avoiding the dangerous conditions (and road blocks).
Many made it home, but we could not. Our time was running out.
We made for Colorado. Friends are caring for our boat, which suffered only minor, external damage. Lost a solar panel, the bimini and it was damp below. I have plans to head back there once we get JoAnne settled into a routine.
This past week was a mess with the doctors and insurance. We argued with both for hours, until finally, the insurance company told the doctor’s office what we’d been saying all along; we do NOT need a referral to her oncologist (since she has been seeing him for four years) and we’re on Tricare standard which does NOT require ANY referrals for ANY outpatient care.
The doctors also told us, that there were two areas of concern, not one. One area on her lung, and another somewhere between kidney and liver, very non specific. We will find out how specific that is on this coming Tuesday.
Another CT scan was performed a few days ago, after the battles with Insurance and the Dr. office, and we now have more information.
Friday she was called and told that she will be commencing chemotherapy soon, after a port is installed and we see the doctor once more so we can work out a schedule and plan to fight this. He told the caller to tell JoAnne that the lung issue is a “recurrence” rather than a new form of cancer (lung cancer perhaps). He was unsure prior to the CT scan, but is more confident of his diagnosis now I suppose.
(Personally, I am NOT more confident yet, and have questions.)
At the beginning I put up a definition. The definition was for the word Limbo, a word I used in the previous blog entry from August.
Limbo, from the definition is a place… without a destiny or destination.
It’s also a dance…
Kind of like life. Life is a dance or journey. You never know when you’re young how the moves go. You have to be taught. Some of us, like me, never learned how to dance, I just listen to the music. But, there are times when bending over backward to accomplish something important is how you get it done. Going in the wrong direction to reach your destination can get frustrating.
Our destination is, and always will be, to sail the islands, from the Bahamas on to the rest of the Caribbean. We have found that life isn’t really a “dance”, but a journey without a true “destination”. The “Dance” part comes in at successive times in life, when you’re worried, when you’re up against some seemingly insurmountable task and just about ready to give up and quit, you Dance.
It can be a jig, a limbo, a foxtrot, or the twist. Whatever it is, at the end, you will come out stronger, better, and more in tune with life.
JoAnne and I had a dance the last few days with Life. It wasn’t a journey, it didn’t turn out to be a destination, merely a diversion. We talked and discussed this dance, and found that we have decided that we will no longer live our lives around medical issues, we will deal with them around our lives.
After we get the plan in place, we’ll have about three weeks before the next chemo session. This will give us time to travel back across country, see our boat, repair the damage, prepare her for winter (by dumping water, checking engine etc) and collect the Colorado Clothing we’ll need, and then return to our family and support system here.
Adventure has proven she can and will survive whatever Nature throws at her for now. It’s not her time, and it’s certainly not OUR time.
So to our friends in Southport, Kevin and Debi, we thank you for looking after our home, Adventure, and WE WILL BE BACK SOON! To our family, Especially Nick and Levi, thank you for your support. To those we left behind in the disaster, you will rise up stronger.
And for us…. We’re going sailing again, very, very soon.