I’m going to be paying for this one.. it was worth it! 

Today was my son’s graduation from grade seven- he’ll start highschool next year.  A year ago, going into that gym would have ended with me in the hospital. I premedicated myself like hell, and pulled my mask on tight, and I did it! Well, I watched him get his service award and his certificate, and then I bailed. The energy cost will be expensive for several days, I’m guessing. 

I haven’t gone to Christmas concerts, field trips, assemblies, etc etc at my kids school since 2015. I barely go out in public (although I’ve found a few coffee shops I can tolerate for a while). It still stuns me how much people REEK of fragrance.  Generally, Vancouverites are ‘low maintenance’ when it comes to cosmetics. I know very few women who wear full makeup on a regular basis. A small group of local Persian women still follow what they were used to, and scent is an essential part of getting dressed. I had a friend who is Persian tell me that she feels naked without her makeup and perfume. (I gotta say, my Mom wouldn’t have gone out without her makeup and perfume, either.) Of course, just for fun, Persian makeup is heavily scented. On special occasions, everybody turns their scent load up- a bit of hairspray here, extra fabric softener there.. ugh. I don’t really have occasion to get dressed up. I don’t go out for dinner, to the movies (let alone the theater), to any religious gatherings, etc etc. My wardrobe is very small- I live in yoga pants and t-shirts. Clothes that were bought before 2016 are too large to wear (a pair of pants literally fell off me as I was walking down the hall last week!). I managed to scrounge a pair of capri’s two sizes too big, and a pretty top I bought last summer- I’m glad I wasn’t in Toronto- I would not have passed muster. I am so conspicuous with my mask on, but I think I managed to not be too obvious. 

Wednesday  was one of those days where I was keenly aware that I was well past my energy envelope, as well as being in a very high risk environment. A large gathering is one of the most challenging environments for me. Not only is it unpredictable, but it’s tricky to make a quick exit- parents with cameras in the aisle, latecomers standing at the back, etc, etc. Not to mention that we’re sitting in a school gym that needs to be replaced (Word to all builders- flat roofs are a very bad idea in Vancouver… oh, man, the mildew…awful). There are about 300 other people, several of them adolescent boys who have just discovered the foul thing called ‘Axe’. (The boys are way more perfumed than the girls- which is a bit interesting..). It was startlingly over stimulating before the ceremony started, I’m SO rarely in public, I forget how loud people can be! My sister in law reminded me of that when I started to feel a little cagey, I was (understandably) anxious, and on full high alert. (The kid in front of us still had wet hair-it was pumping out some sickly sweet fruit scent 🤢) . My biggest worry was that I wouldn’t get out of the gym in time and pass out, embrassing and worrying my kiddo. (The day he turned 13 I suddenly became embarrassing, and I don’t know anything, as all parents do). I’m stuck in my bedroom right now- I have to wear a mask even in the house. Spring is late, and it got warm very fast. There’s grass and cedar pollen at the same time…  My poor mast cells are loosing their little minds- invaders everywhere! To top it off, I’m out of cannon balls (blood cells), and there is no iron left to make more (I had two infusions in May- and it’s used up already!). The grin on my son’s face when he saw me, and him knowing that I can be there for him-totally worth it. 

It was great to see my son and his classmates. I was so impressed with how confident they all looked, and they all had genuine smiles. The class ‘clown’ kept it low key, so that it was silly rather than annoying. Wait… rewind. My kid is going to highschool in sept…. oh boy. When did THAT happen? My nephew graduated from highschool this week, too. Wow. Time truly does get faster when you age. 

That was on Wednesday, and Thursday and today passed in a blur. I was ‘aggressively resting’…not that I had a choice. I binge watched U.K. documentaries, I’m sure I won’t remember a thing I saw… Tomorrow is Canada Day. I don’t think I’ll be attending any parades, but I should be vaguely functional. More so if I actually get a few z’s…so I’ll sign off. 

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