Wednesday, August 19, 2009

what's in you wednesday

I'll be honest.

Every day that I was away on vacation, I thought about Deana. Especially the day that I watched this magnificent sunset and I thought about the harsh reality of a woman, not yet 40 years old, dying to a brutal disease that she was diagnosed with, 11 months prior. I thought about her leaving behind a husband and two little boys who are not yet five. I thought about Deana and I thought that what happened to her, (and her and her) could have just as easily happened to me.

I thought about how life can throw some real curve balls our way and nobody knows what tomorrow will bring. I thought about our children and how blessed and lucky we are to have them and, how blessed and lucky Charlie and I both are that we - and our children - are in relatively good health.

Sure, my husband's back goes out every now and again and it might hurt to climb a flight of stairs. Or, sometimes my knees make noises like a bag of potato chips being crushed and I'll be momentarily crippled by a rogue muscle cramp. But we're here and we're healthy - and as far as our doctor's are concerned - we'll all still be around several years from now.

These past few days, I've been at a high intensity business meeting. I'll be going to another high intensity business meeting next week that will involve a judge, a jury and several lawyers who have been tasked with making me look like a raving idiot.

Since I've returned from vacation, I have been buried under almost 1,000 work e-mails and associated fire drill situations than I can count on both hands and feet.

I am trying really hard to not lose focus of what's important in life.

My children. My husband. My physical health.

Charlie has been officially laid off. He will be hired as a contract employee for his company - so he has work if he wants it, but trying to juggle his part time schedule with my more than full-time schedule, is proving to be very difficult.

Unfortunately, and as much as I'd love it, at the moment, moving to the southeast isn't an option for us. Of course, we could just move on our own - but then we'd need to find new jobs. And from the limited research that I've done, I am well aware that the chances of me (or Charlie) finding a position even slightly comparable to what I have now is completely null.

And, if we were to move on our own, we would take a significant hit on the loss of equity in our house. Fortunately, we are still in the black. But that "black" is more like "a very light grey" when you consider the resale value now, to what it was two years ago. Meanwhile, I know for a fact, that my job in California will dissolve over the next few years - so we are currently facing a great unknown.

Over the past week - more than once, we have openly discussed what is important to us. We have reflected on the fragility of life, the unimportance of material possessions and the knowledge that we only come around this way, once.

It is for that reason, at the moment, we are seriously contemplating selling off everything that we own and buying a sailboat that we will take up and down the inter-coastal waterway, while reveling in the waves that splash off our bow and the bottle nosed dolphins that jump in our wake. Once we've had enough boating, we'll move in to a one-bedroom apartment in South Carolina and live off of noodles.

But before we do any of that boating and one bedroom apartment stuff, I need to complete a three-day breast cancer walk.

More information will be coming soon, but for now, our team will be The More The Merrier Walkers for Knockers (Walkers for Knockers was already taken) and currently, there are almost TEN women who have committed to joining us. I'd love to have more.

This is an invitation.

Do you live in Southern California? Or, would you be willing to take a trip? Check your calendar. The dates are November 20-22, 2009. Check out the button on the left in my sidebar - or click this link to see the website and learn more about a three day walk, that will cover sixty miles, and will raise a lot of money to cure a disease that claims the lives of 7.5 million people a year.

There you have it.

That's what's in me this week. A whole lot of instability, a probable mid-life crisis, coupled with an overwhelming desire to cure cancer.

What's in you?


  1. I am so sorry that your husband has been laid off. We are looking at that possibly happening to us in the New Year if the economy does not improve. I never thought that I would be full-time working mom and my husband never thought that he would be a stay at home dad. However, flexiblity is the key to surviving and thriving during challenging times. Like you, we are blessed with our family and our health, so what else really matters-

  2. Thanks Cali - but actually - we're rather excited about it. Life has been getting increasingly hectic for us and we're optimistic that if one of us is consistently at home, things will settle down.

    Of course, I'd love to be the one home - but - Charlie is a great cook and he is pumped to spend some serious time teaching the children his craft...

  3. So like how far do you have to walk? More than a mile?

  4. I am sorry you guys are facing the woes of financial stress. It is so funny though that you should mention living in a boat. We are converting a bus, and then we were talking yesterday and thought if we get tired of the bus we should get a boat and cruise up and down the coast.

    You should do it and blog about it! :D

  5. My Dad is so proud of you and very impressed that you would go it again raise more money for "c". Thank you for your continued passion to make our world a better place.

    Although I'm not a tent person...the more I think of it - I really wish I could join you guys. Hey! There's a 3day walk in Atlanta - how bout ya'll taking a trip here? ;-)

    Did the girls pick you as the team captain? (God help them!) ;-)
    Love, Marg

  6. Oooooh, I like the sailboat idea. There was a great documentary on TV awhile ago about a South African/Canadian family that did something similar -- they sailed their boat around the world for several years with two small children. I wish I could remember the name of the program. Anyways, I think it would be an amazing adventure and what a way to educate your kids. Good luck with whatever you decide and with your walk -- wish I could join you but NJ is too far away!

  7. Sorry to hear about the layoff as well. I work at a NYC-based transportation planning /engineering company and I know of so many architects (and planners) being laid off. It's such a challenging time.

    I'm sure you'll make the most of it. I really love reading your blog. I'm a new mom (Oliver is one now), juggling a full time executive level position, activities (surfing, running), and keeping our marriage happy. When I need perspective I read your blogs!

  8. You are both geologists? Check our (Environmental Resources Management) and opt for Careers. They have several positions across the US for geologists. I'm not a recruiter and I don't work for ERM, though I used to.

  9. Have you participated in the 3Day before? My sister has walked some local and some far away. And, when she isn't walking, she is supporting the walkers. This time, she will be in San Diego with her large group of friends cheering on the walkers as one of the "Hookers for Hooters". (If you don't know who I am talking about, you will after the event is over!)

  10. I just posted a link to your Breast Cancer site on my Facebook page. It's easy to do... just a couple of clicks! If all of your blog readers would do this, we could easily help you with your goal!

  11., can I come stay at your house, if I come for the 3 day walk?! :) Remember...I live in northern Alaska, so I'm used to cramped spaces, and totally love living out of a tent! :) Easily pleased. I just think its a great idea to do these things, but never have a place to stay, or people to feed me.
    P.S. my hubby used to pilot the medevac jets outta here, and now he works at Alaska our travel is like fifteen bucks from Anchorage to wherever. :)

  12. I wish I could join you for the walk! If it was in SC I'd be there...

    Every time I read about your trip to SC I am anticipating the announcement that you're moving there. It just feels like it's where you're supposed to be or something. I know the feeling of wanting to be near family. We ended up renting out our home to buy another home closer to family. Because I just needed to be there... It's tough.

  13. Hi! I just wanted to tell you that I have done the 3-Day twice and you are going to have so much fun! It was one of the most fun and rewarding things I have ever done. My team lives on (Texans for Ta-Ta's) but I am not participating this year. My trips are 6 month old and once things calm down I may do it again. Good luck!