Why I smell like a Pomegranate

Posted on March 5th, 2012

I know, I know.

I have not written in a couple of weeks.

Actually, that’s not true. I have written a number of posts since Stella got home from the hospital last month.

It’s just that right before I am about to hit the “send” button, I re-read the posts and decided not to send them. They were not the right “message” that I wanted to share.

It’s not a big deal. I don’t think that any of you would find what I wrote surprising.

For example, I wrote (and then deleted) a post called “Unexpected Pain.”

Essentially it was about how we had gone to bed one night and the next morning found ourselves on the way to the Emergency Room (and a week-long hospital stay) because Stella had very serious pain that seemed to come out of nowhere and surprised us both.

But the post was also about how I had gone to the wedding of a close friend’s daughter. Stella was not feeling well enough to attend so I went solo. Everything was fine until one moment, while watching the ceremony when I felt a sudden emotional pain well up out of nowhere. I guess being in an emotional environment like that without my wife just triggered something. I had to excuse myself  run away and sit outside for awhile trying to get a grip. Which, of course, I did and then could go hang out again with my friends.

See, no big deal, but not really worthy of a whole depressing blog post.

Then I wrote a piece, and I don’t really remember what I called it. It was about how when Stella was feeling miserable, I stopped running and riding and just sat around eating all the cakes and cookies that people dropped off. Then one night the scale told me that I was well on the way to adding all the weight that Stella has been losing. I guess I realized that the psychological link that makes me feel low when Stella is feeling low was not doing either one of us any favors.

So late at night, I got on my bike and hit the pedals real hard, doing a time trial for an hour around the empty streets of the Yishuv. While it was tough at first, after a bit I could literally feel the stress leaving my body as I hammered up and down Neve Daniel’s roads, sometimes singing out loud or just yelling like a madman.

And I decided that I would resume training, with complete focus and commitment.

Training for what?

For whatever comes along.

Again, maybe interesting. But not anything I want to say more about.

Then one day I decided to write about time management. How every minute I wonder if I should be spending it with Stella, the kids, my work, or myself. And whatever I decide, always feeling like I made the wrong choice. If Stella is upstairs feeling lousy, does she need me? Or do the kids need a distraction? Or should I really be spending that time exercising? No real right answers, so again, not worthy of a blog post.

Of course everyone wants an update on Stella’s condition. But I have found that cancer is not like a football game where the score changes every few minutes. You can’t go on this blog and check Stella’s status like she is the Kinneret after a rain storm. Stella has chemo every three weeks. The chemo makes her feel lousy. She has also lost lots of weight, which concerns me.

But on the other hand, she has told me that she is fine and that the weight loss is due to an inability to eat much during the ten days after chemo. The weather has been awful for the week, so that does not help.

But right now the sun is shining and she is feeling much better. The last few days she appears to have stopped losing weight. She is eating much more and up and about out of bed.

So that is the important update you all have been waiting for.

Now I can get to the real reason I am writing this post.

Why I smell like a pomegranate.

By now, everyone is aware that as much as I appreciate the sentiment of people cooking food for us, I much prefer working with my kids to plan out menus and cook for ourselves. It brings a sense of “normalcy” to an admittedly abnormal situation that we would not have with lots of different people dropping off lots of different types of food.

Yet everyone loves Stella and wants to do something for her. So people have been dropping off presents.

Very nice.

She has tons of movies and books and doesn’t really need all that much.

So she has started getting what I call potions.

We have foofy soaps and shampoos, hand creams, foot creams, body creams.

We have bottles of lotions made from olives, and lavender, and lemons, and yes, pomegranates.

I think I have more fruit in my bathroom then in my kitchen.

And as nice has all these special gifts are, there is no way that Stella can use them all.

So I have been experimenting — not that I am really into lotions and potions.

But after a good sweaty run, who wouldn’t want to pour a bottle of pomegranate body wash on his head?

So to all the gift givers — thank you very much.

But I think both of us are all set for the time being.

Have a great day!

 

|

Share this article: Tell a Friend

Comments

  1. Zefi, Doron & Noam Seitz says:

    Dear Stella and Yarden,
    We are very happy to hear that Stella is feeling better. I said I would pop in, then heard she wasnt feeling her best and though she would rather have peace and quiet that have to force herself to smile and pretend everything is peachy. We love you guys lost and hope to see you all back to “normal” as soon as might be.
    And as for the pomegranate smell: your family smells of love, doesn’t get any better than that. No need to hide it.

    Have a lovely SUNNY week.

    Love,

    Zefi, Doron & Noam

  2. Ruth says:

    Thanks for the update Jordan, all news is always welcome, whether no news, good news or bad news. Stella and you are never far from my thoughts and prayers.

  3. Brian says:

    Nice article. Rimones me of old times.

  4. Miriam says:

    Still davening for you with all our hearts. Your blogs are just amazing, Yarden! How you put all those emotions together- thanks for letting us know- and Stella looks beautiful. She should have a refuah sheleimah!

  5. carla says:

    Thanks for this update. You have truly said it like it is for all people experiencing somekind of upset in their lives. So many people say “Everything is fine” when it isn’t and you are letting us into your real thoughts. You are amazing and so is your writing. Having been through this and going through this with friends right now I want to take your article and send it to all the people who don’t understand why they can’t visit someone or why the caregiver needs time to be alone, not socialize or eat with people but just regroup. Glad to hear the good news and hear the “real” news too. Hugs and love to you both and your family. And keep writing… it can be hard to read at times but the honesty is the most important part of it.

  6. elana says:

    thanks for the update and for telling your feelings a little. thinking of you, davening for all of you.

  7. minka says:

    tzadakah! this is the answer to what people can do for you now. give tzadakah to any number of institutions like the hospitals stella has been to, the organizations that work for cures for cancer, for care for cancer patients, and on and on. so many organizations that need the tzadakah so so desperately! i gave last week to chai lifeline here, which is helping kira and ariel with zakkai and the other kids. and i will give to others that stella may be cured once and for all and that yarden and stella will sit in rocking chairs surrounded by their grandchildren one day soon, in neve daniel of course!
    i am happy that stella is managing to eat during the weeks she is not suffering from chemo and i pray that every last atom of cancer is gone from her body soon.

  8. libby anfinsen says:

    Am in Jerusalem for several months……let me know if Stella or you want
    some visits….Is there a bus to neve daniel….don’t have a car and can’t hitch
    all the way…..chag purim sameach with many more purims in store. This cold rainy sleety and snowy Jerusalem is not what I expected, and my computer, telephone, television all had malfunctioned leaving me stranded in my apt in
    Talpiot without hot water…..But things are somewhat better now, and the miraculous feat of purim where all bad news was reversed for victorious heights
    should happen again to cure you and Stella from all and any unwarranted and
    unwanted problems…..love and pleasures only for you and the kids…..libby anfinsen

  9. Samara says:

    Thanks for the update. We’ve been thinking of you all on a daily basis. Talia told me about the kids taking turns making meals and doing chores. You have great kids. May Hashem give you lots of strength to continue.

  10. The Engel Family says:

    I say tehilim on behalf of Stella daily as our hearts go out to all that you and your family are continuing to go through. Thank you for always keeping in touch and not turning your back to your friends inspite of your emotional and stella’s physical pain. You are a good role model of how to live through the pain and isolation that you feel as long as long as she is recovering. Shmuel (now 19) says hi to you all and especially Max, who was always so nice to him. Alix will be in Israel next year, graduating from the Yeshiva this year.

    Know that you are thought of with great admiration and fondness in your community of Silver Spring/Potomac, USA.
    Ahuva, Chuck, Shmuel and Alix (and, our dog Rusty too!)