Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Reflecting on the Day

A shot from Lake Scranton, Sunday evening. It's a water reservoir not far from our house, so no fishing or recreational activities -- a pristine nature reserve.

The last time we walked around Lake Scranton was in March, a beautiful day that inspired some of my favourite photos. Lots has happened since then. David isn't strong enough to walk around the lake with me now, so I stop there by myself. I had to open a jar for him today because he didn't have enough strength to open it himself; walks are now restricted to paths with plenty of places to sit.

What comprised a good day back in March is something altogether different from what we call a good day now. A good day used to be a day in Philadelphia or New York, sampling a new restaurant, or taking an impromptu flight in the Tri-Pacer and photographing migrating birds up close. Now a good day is one where David can eat a plateful of food and be awake enough to get through a film, keep the food down, and not need painkillers.

That would make today a GREAT DAY. Not just a good day, but a STUPENDOUS day. The feelings of joy and fulfillment that follow today are no different than they are after any other Good Day, just the criteria's been revised.

Today is also our One Month Anniversary. I reminded David of this auspicious occasion by sending him an SMS, complete with a nifty ringtone. Mr. Anachronism took a while to figure out what the alert sound was for, but I have to give him credit for his reply...

After David finished chemotherapy around 6pm, I made a dinner that I was half-expecting David not to finish. To my utter amazement, he not only finished the whole plate of stir-fry (including the vegetables, which is even more amazing), but he went back to the pot and ate the rest of the beef and mushrooms. And it stayed down, all the way through our Netflix DVD, which David wrote a review for here:

Dave's Logbook: Movie Review - Devil's Playground

I knew very little about the Amish culture aside from their traditional eschewing of worldly possessions and living in total self-sufficiency, but I have to thank Lana for pointing me to this documentary, because it's a real eye-opener. Coming from a strict religious upbringing -- though nowhere near as strict as Old Order Amish -- I can understand the mixed feelings the youth have towards familial pressures and the even stronger pulls of peer pressure and the world outside the religious community. Yet...

*spoiler alert*

... probably the most compelling factoid in the documentary is the very last frame, which states that 90% of Amish youth return to the church after their rumspringa period, and the Amish are enjoying the highest retention rate in their history since they formed in 1693. If you've seen both sides of the fence this number seems less outrageous, but the documentary does show a side of religious ordered life that might be more appreciated than if it were unseen.

As with all good documentaries, it sparked discussion, a great way to end our Good Day -- Quality TimeTM with The Spouse.