December 2007


So apparently Todd’s new year’s resolution is to kick some ass! Today was the kind of day that washed away my doubts and put the biggest damn smile on my face ( and Mary is also wearing one of course). I kid you not we were so caught off guard, that the first hour totally choked us up and we had to reach for the tissue box! Not just once either. As you all know the seizures were the most painful setback and poisonous really….. because they allowed a deep seeded doubt to take hold, while we watched and wait for Todd to reemerge. Well folks, you cannot keep that guy down! Literally! Today as Mary and I walked in Todd was being lifted into his nifty chair………from that moment on we were on the edge of our seats! Todd’s legs were moving up and down, both arms and hands grabbing and holding….he was wiping the sweat off his face (or making every effort to himself)….ate and swallowed applesauce. Did I mention the sentences? ( he is still quiet and we can get the whole line yet…but so soon!) I am telling you we went from 0 to 60 overnight. The guy was lifting himself off the bed in what you could imagine as stomach crunches. I have my guesses as to why, one of which without a doubt is time. For Christmas I gave Todd a special present, an amazing masseuse came in and worked him over yesterday for 2 hours. Sure I massage him, but not in the way Fokelein can! That and the fact that we are coming home and he wants you all to see his best side, of course. Curious what tomorrow will bring…. I expect a tired Todd. One thing is for sure. One day is never like the next, you can never be fully prepared. We look forward to be home…..soon, all in good time. Tomorrow the nurses have allowed us to stay until one in the a.m………then we come home and put Mary (aka the cockroach) on a plane. This weekend Yuksel and Zander return to say their goodbyes to Todd, we have been spending the last few days and evening packing preparing and saying our goodbyes to all the wonderful people here who have become our friends. We were planning to make a nice meal as a thank you for the nurses and our neighbors but that has turned out to be a bit of a pipedream to actually pull off. It is the thought that counts right?

From Mary:

Wow, what a day. From the moment we walked into the room, I could tell something was different. Todd’s face looked different…more expressive, more vibrant, a full range of expressions. As soon as he saw us, he started trembling, his entire body quaking with little tremors. We panicked a bit, wondering what was happening, thinking maybe he was having a seizure or was racked with pain…until his arm moved across his chest and he lifted his foot. His body was straining with such concentrated effort that sweat poured down his face. He grabbed for a towel to wipe the sweat from his face himself. We whooped. We cried. We hung on the side of chair and watched for any signs of movement in his body. A few minutes later, he did it again and again and again…until we left for the night. Being able to see and discern the expressions on his face was so telling. It was a beautiful and complex mixture of glee, joy and determination. Everyone in the room was watching Todd work and cheering him on. The nurse came by every so often to tell Todd to rest a bit, to take a break but that only made him work harder. He willfully ignored her orders and would cheekily move something else to spite her. He talked a lot, though we had difficulty understanding his soft words, we both thought we heard him say, “I can’t stop moving.” He checked every limb as though going down the list to make sure things worked…hands, then legs, then feet, then neck. The visible progress he made with each and every effort was riveting…every limb moved and turned and twisted and retracted and raised a little higher or wider or with more precision each time he moved it. He went systematically down his body with these self-tests, pushing a little further each time.

His expression was so intensely joyous, his body was finally moving again under his command…it was like watching Pinocchio come to life. I realized what an incredible moment I was witnessing and how lucky I was to see such a gorgeous sight as someone reintroducing body and brain to one another again after a long separation. Todd Blair had decided it was time to move and Goddamnit, he was gonna move. Every time Alex reclined the bed to get him to relax and rest for a moment, he pulled himself halfway up. At one point, he tried to swing his legs to the side of the bed as though he were planning to leave it. At every turn, his expression was one of joyful defiance…against the odds, against the nurse’s advice, against our expectations.

After a couple of hours of this, both Alex and I needed to go to the bathroom, but neither of us could leave for fear of missing one of these incredible moments. Alex’s grin was so huge and so frozen, I teased her about it, but little could I say when I went through a box of Kleenex myself. Alex had taken off her ring in order to give Todd a massage and as we were leaving, gave it to him to put back on her finger. As I watched him struggle (and ultimately succeed) in putting it on, I felt I should turn away and give them privacy but the moment was so Goddamn beautiful and precious, I hope they will forgive me for watching. Then I really blubbered. We told Todd to try and get some rest tonight, that we couldn’t wait to see what he had in store for tomorrow, but the look in eyes said he was planning otherwise. I imagine him doing crunches in his bed as soon as the nurses leave.

Quote from the room while we were writing: “You know you are in trouble when your make yourself cry ….. reading the entry you just wrote!”

From both of us: This should get a response out of your guys!!!!!

Well we are currently in the middle of the holidays. Yes we learned the hard way about 2nd Christmas. Apparently the day after Christmas, Amsterdam is shut much in the way of Christmas day except a little more open. Mary and I were tromping off into Amsterdam business park off the Bilmer Arena Station to pick up a special needs package. This package due to its needs could not arrive just at the AMC instead we must wander off (in the wrong direction) on streets void of sidewalks to help this little package find its way into our hands…… I think in the process we found some projects!? We decided at this time to accompany one another on our next adventure back to the post office… today. Today is Mary’s birthday. Toetsie, is trying to dig up the perfect Amsterdam moment for a dinner of 5 people, this includes Roland and Rian… Mary’s friends who I haven’t met yet. ……….BUT I will!

Mary has been trying to talk Amsterdam into doggie bags…… she never wants to leave a morsel behind. We are a little unclear on the etiquette here, but that does not stop Miss Mary, the cockroach. Mary was introduced to Davy as a cockroach, she got no jet lag, can go without sleep for days, will eat anything, has not gotten sick, and can drink (and eat) anyone of us under the table. Ahhhh our dear little cockroach!!! I believe for her birthday, today, I will try to find some collapsible Tupperware for her purse!

Christmas was a busy day at the AMC with our creative spirits in overdrive. We had a taster menu for Todd, all tongue worthy treats. When I arrived at the AMC, I got the best present a girl in my position could ask for. A sentence not clearly discernable, but a sentence all the same! The exciting part was video skype with a few friends and family. We, Todd included, were all quite pooped afterword with two of our dearest nurses, Stacy and Kati, sticking their faces in the camera to meet peeps. They have been such a comfort to us over all this time and so wonderfully committed to Todd’s recovery. Stacy has been with Todd since we came down from ICU, she is the perfect combination of fun and informative. Kati, is like a firm yet very sweet aunt……she can get Todd to do a lot. She hugs me at those very touchy moments, which in turn have in the past opened the floodgates!

While Mary speaks at length about the beautiful dinner she was prepared to make, we did not eat it. Instead we wandered in to an Indonesian restaurant partly because we were being stalked by some fucked up screaming dude yelling fuck over and over again somewhere right behind us. We were just too wiped out to wait for dinner it was late (almost tenish) and we did not want to turn around, so we ducked into this place nearby that was open. This is the first time the doggie bag thing came up, while she was unable to manage to bring home morsels, she was walking proudly down the street with a plastic bag of their homemade sambal! It was reminiscent of Zander walking down the street one of our first nights outside the hospital with a bag of toilet paper we were given by the restaurant…. We are so creative around here and nothing is ever too smooth, but it keeps us laughing.

As for the return home…. I may seem a bit illusive on this note but trust me this is not the case. The exact information is at this time is yet to be had. Mary pointed out it is bit like waiting for an organ transplant….. the call comes in (very little notice) and then you go. The arrangements are in the works, with the holidays clearly gumming up the gears. We do not at this time know where we are going and when. So you most likely will not know when we are going home but just that we are. We are getting busy with trying to see people, say our thank yous, pack, etc. So you will hear less and less until one day you hear we are settling in at home. It should be a matter of a couple weeks all total I imagine. We look forward to being surrounded by our friends and family, whenever that day comes. Until then Todd gets stronger and stronger every day, which will allow him to weather this flight. I imagine the actual act of returning home will take quite a toll on us both.

Mary is walking around the kitchen cracking up saying cockroach in 4 different languages, I think one is made up. Meanwhile she reheats the lamb stew she brought home last night wrapped up like a foil football. We did eat the Christmas dinner for lunch yesterday, much to our delight. So the frig is empty and we will venture out soon to rectify this situation. She is doing some lovely cooking.

PRACTICAL: I know of two packages on route… I hope to receive today or tomorrow. Let me know off the blog if there is something I need to keep an eye out for.

Merry Christmas, Happy Kwanzaa, Feliz Navidad, Happy Whatever-You-Celebrate? My Dutch friends here frightened me with stories of a town without food or provisions for the nest few days, so I spent Christmas eve running around to various shops for last minute supplies as though I were preparing for an encroaching blizzard. The house we are staying in has such a well-appointed kitchen that I vowed to cook at least one really nice meal in it for Alex before we leave and Christmas seemed like the perfect occasion. I bought some beautiful lamb from the organic butcher around the corner, a crusty loaf of bread and a nice bottle of wine. Alex has been dropping subtle hints about butternut squash soup, ex, “All I want is some butternut squash soup,” but there was nary a squash to be found, so carrot soup it is. Someone please make that girl some butternut squash soup when she gets home?

We were surprised and saddened to find Tuti still in his bed when we arrived, his holiday furlough shortened by a fever. The mood on Tuti’s side of the ward was somber. In the midst of this odd combination of sober watchfulness and celebration, we put on the Christmas cds sent from Carol & Traci, and moved Todd to a quiet lounge for the Skype video calls to his family.

The first call came from Todd’s father and his stepmother, Renate. Todd’s eyes locked on the screen and never left it. Subsequent calls from each of his sisters, his mother and his beautiful nieces and nephews brought tales of chicken enchiladas brunches and Christmas morning ski trips.

Mark and Amy and Jake Eddie called next. Jake Eddie asked if Unci Todd felt better and eagerly showed off his new toys. Todd seemed especially interested in a radio-controlled Godzilla that spat fiery flames at us. Several of the nurses popped their heads in to meet Todd’s friends and say hello.

Our call to Barney was the day’s highlight. The other calls had been pre-arranged, but we surprised Barney, who was fast asleep at his parents’ guesthouse in Calistoga. Gamely, he answered and agreed to turn on his camera. The connection was poor and the room was dark, so he stumbled around outside with video camera, cell phone and laptop in hand for a few minutes before realizing it was 34 degrees outside and he’d forgotten to put on shoes. Once he was properly shod, he gave us a walking tour of the Haynes compound, almost falling into the swimming pool because his attention was divided amongst so many devices…… all before his first cup of coffee.

For the man who is chair of the Media Arts department at CCA, it was somehow appropriate that Barney’s call should be plagued with technical difficulties. The video and sound weren’t syncing, so we talked via cell phone and watched his mouth move seconds later. Several times, his face dissolved into pixels or he appeared to have three mouths. We had a blast employing as many recording devices as possible: phones, cameras, laptops, video and stills?and a lengthy discourse on how many layers of technology were involved?an uber/meta video smash-em-up derby. Todd seemed to really enjoy all the techno chaos. His mouth and throat really started working as soon as he saw Barney. Maybe he was trying to tell us how to fix the problem.

We were all tired after almost two hours of calls and Todd was sleeping soundly when we left. A nice email from Barney was waiting for us when we got home. It was, he said, a great way to wake up on Christmas morning and the best present he’d gotten all day.

22 December 2007

I apologize for the tardiness of this entry. There simply has not been time to sit and record what I have seen and experienced since my arrival in Amsterdam three days ago. We are always in transit, to or from the hospital, foraging, fetching and ferrying goods back and forth across the city: infinity-shaped toothbrushes for Todd, visual treats to counter the dull hospital ceiling he looks at most of the time, food to fuel our own bodies so can make yet another trip to somewhere.

I was nervous on the flight over. What state would Todd be in? What state is Alex in? How useful will I be? Those worries faded as the plane circled above Amsterdam. A thin layer of new snow covered the city, highlighting its edges and contours in the purple glow of daybreak. It looked like a Guy Madden film in 3-D. I knew everything would be fine.

The minute I walked into Todd’s room his eyes locked on mine. His mouth didn’t move, but those eyes radiated a huge smile to match the one I was wearing. I kissed him. I hugged him. I rattled off the names of people I’d seen recently? Barney, Don Day, David Williams, John Rogers, Penny and Penny, Henry Cole, North? His eyes really lit up when I described the interface show and the work his students had done for it, so I lingered on that for as long as possible, peppering it with as much visually critical detail as I could. He seemed hungry and eager for news of any kind so I kept going and he ate every word. At times, his gaze is so intent and so deeply focused I found it unnerving? such a heavily concentrated dose of information and enthusiasm and emotion pouring out of those twin beams. It was such a relief to find him so Todd-like in so many ways.

The nurse gave us permission to take Todd outside to see the snow. We had two exactly two minutes and no longer. We bundled him up, all of us giddy for Todd’s first trip outside the hospital. We found an opening in the bushes that surround the frozen canal and parked his chair there. “Do you like it, Todd?” He blinked once for yes. “Are you cold, Todd?” Two blinks for no. “Do you want to go inside?” An emphatic no. It was beautiful to watch him take in all the details of that frozen world and difficult to go back inside, but it was getting colder by the minute and Todd was getting tired.

When we left him that evening, he was sleeping soundly and, I like to imagine, replaying all the images of what he’d just seen.

23 December 2007

Davey leaves today tomorrow so the morning was spent packing and repacking his bags, most of which are filled with Todd and Alex’s stuff. Davey seems to be going through what Alex describes as the freak-out everyone has when they leave Amsterdam. He was perfectly functional, of course, but entering the first stages of Todd/Alex withdrawal. Todd must have suspected as much because he gave Davey a really special going-away present today.

Alex had gotten several pieces of really nice chocolate for the three of them to share in parting. Davey bit into his piece and scooped a dab of its soft center onto his pinkie. He offered it Todd, saying “Come on, buddy, open your mouth so I can put this on your tongue.” Todd struggled and struggled to open up. You could see how much he wanted that chocolate. Davey coaxed and pleaded. Todd worked and worked. Finally, those lips parted enough for Davey to share his chocolate. The room erupted in Super Bowl Sunday cheers as Todd swallowed and opened his mouth a little wider for more. Having seen the grey gruel milkshake he’s been eating, I can only imagine the pleasure Todd was feeling when that chocolate slid down his throat. Davey was beaming from ear to ear, so happy for that personalized gift from Todd. I think we all teared up a little bit.

That day also brought a pretty powerful exchange with the Surinamese family across the way. We ran into M.C., Tuti’s brother, at the elevator as we were taking Todd down to look at the hospital’s art collection. M.C., who is gregarious and jovial and always a pleasure to run into, looked at Todd, then at us and said, “You know what Tuti said about Todd?” According to M.C., Tuti is a shaman and sees things. Tuti saw Todd “go all the way up to the top” and talk to the people there. Todd told those people he wasn’t yet ready to go, it wasn’t his time and so came back down. Todd, Tuti says, is back and will be well one day. That’s quite a conversation to have at the coffee machine in a hospital hallway. I like that story because I believe it. Watching Tuti over the past few days, I have no doubt he sees things the rest of us can’t. Alex has told me about the bond Tuti and Todd have developed over the course of their stays here and how, in many ways, their respective conditions and progress have mirrored one another’s. We are trying to think of a nice way to thank them for all their support of Alex and Todd and a way to show support for Tuti and his healing. If anyone has ideas, keep in mind the family often extends to twenty or thirty people and they all love to eat. Tuti’s wife is making us Surinamese food and making a special trip to the hospital to deliver it because Tuti has gotten a holiday furlough and is going home for a few days. There is a great deal of love in that ward. People like Tuti and his family and the nurses make a drab and clinical place strangely beautiful and alive. I couldn’t have predicted I’d say this, but I am very happy to be here.

Well the last few weeks have been very challenging for my faith and strength to say the very least. The waiting has been sheer torture and of course I want to feel and see the things we have seen before. The seizures by their very nature take such a toll. I was waiting to see if there were any obvious changes to the equation. Today, and the last couple days, have finally given the glimpse of what we have been waiting for. Yesterday as you will hear from Davy was Todd’s first word (again) “more”…… and today came the attempt to say more… you could call them questions? Sentences? Phrases?… Well we were not able to clearly discern what he was saying…it is clear that more is coming. There is an increasing complexity in our days. It is simple and beautiful and oh so overdue.

Turns out the reaction to the cold here was quite warranted. The city is now covered in a beautiful powder…. Today Mary and I took Todd out for his first excursion outside the walls of the hospital. (It took me 2 weeks, Todd a few months) We all enjoyed the beauty of the white trees and checked out the public art piece there along the path that we walk by every day on the way from the train to the hospital.…more on this moment will soon come from Miss Mary. (On the way we did check out the 75 Christmas trees and the solid steel waves…I told him Liisa would be talking to him about these.)

Since I am in the company of such good writers I have and will take a back seat, but just for a moment. It is always good for us all to hear and see another perspective… and with that I give you Davy.

Davy here:

“More!”

Todd tends to do things in twos these days, so when he looked up at Alex and whispered this word, I knew he’d be repeating the request. Alex had been planting kisses on his cheeks, forehead, eyes and lips and when she drew her head away to smile at him, he wanted to let her know he wasn’t done: “More!” he said again, louder so that we could both clearly understand his desire.

Yep, that was Todd’s first word. “Love,” I’m sure, will not be far behind it, but first he needs to regain more dexterity with the tongue.

Todd’s new room, now that he’s checked out of medium care, is pretty sizeable. It could hold four beds but there’s currently three. With this move, he has been reunited with an old friend, Tootie: the two of them face each other over by the windows—their feet separated by a table and chairs. Their view includes the low rooftops of the hospital complex, and a vast, flat countryside scattered with bare, frost-coated trees.

Tootie bunks across from Todd. His brother MC and his girlfriend Myra show up to hang out with him everyday. Other members of his Suriname family—all ebony skinned with beautiful velvety hair—like to visit and things get very social. Kids hop around, the adults gossip, and Lenny Kravitz plays on the boom box. The ambience is great for Todd. Today, after taking Todd for a spin, we sat around gabbing with MC and Tootie (who had on his black Bob Marley teeshirt) about Suriname food and music. Todd follows the conversation, his eyes fixed with interest on whoever is talking, and occasionally answering a question himself with a blink. But yes, he still gets quite tired and he can’t always concentrate on what’s being said around him.

It’s COLD! There’s snow! The denizens of Amsterdam are out taking pictures of the bicycles and boats all dusted with powder, and the trees glimmering with ice. Seagulls whirl around in the white air and sit on the points of the houses near smoky chimneys.

On the subject of snow, the October issue of “Powder” magazine (thoughtfully sent by a friend) has a great article written by the ski pro C.R. Johnson, who recovered fully from an injury similar to Todd’s. It is a perspective from somebody who has been there. I’ve emailed the editors to see if Alex can post a copy, but if any of you can get your hands on the magazine, it’s worth reading that piece.

Alex and Neruda are proving to be a potentially dangerous combination—especially for anybody who happens to be standing by Todd’s bed as she recites to him the Chilean poet’s love poems. Yesterday, she was reading a particularly racy one, called “Body of a Woman.” She sat on his bed, with one arm on the other side of him, propping her up by his side, and leaned her face in, close to his. When she began the poem, “Body of a woman, white hills, white thighs…” Todd closed his eyes and seemed to drink in the verses. BUT, when she got to these lines, about halfway through—

Oh the goblets of the breast! Oh the eyes of absence!
Oh the roses of the pubis!

—his left leg SHOT up under the sheet with two lightning mule kicks! Alex looked up from the book and smiled to me—she hadn’t seen it, but she certainly felt it and heard it. I just busted out laughing. All right, you two: Get a motel!

It’s impossible to express HOW COOL IT IS to see Alex conjuring Todd back into the world, day by day. She gets him to talk, move, brings out his passion. She calms him down after a nightmare, rubs his legs and makes him purr, and kisses him and caresses him into deep restful sleep.

Be patient, Todd. In good time you’ll finish the poem yourself.

Davy

P.S. Mary arrived this morning, hungry and happy to get off the plane. She brings a lot of good energy to help Alex get ready to move Todd out and get him back to SF. The two went off to shop for tights and mittens before training off to the hospital.

Dear All:
I walked into the ward last night at 5pm to find Alex with her head on the bed just below Todd’s pillow and her long black hair spread out across his chest. Todd, who normally naps around this time, was wide awake and had his eyes fixed adoringly on his sleeping wife. As I stood there looking at them, the tears started welling up in my eyes like I was a little old lady! These two are so strong when they’re around each other. What an inseparable duo!

I’m not the only one who’s charmed by these two lovers. Todd and Alex are darlings of the nurses who naturally gravitate over to them during the course of the day. There’s Stacy, the plain talking (let’s not say “indiscreet”) Canadian. There’s Kati, who’s kind of like a good aunt and a dominatrix at the same time. Kati has an amazing power over Todd: she is always trying to push him a little further. But my current new favorite is Ed—or, as I like to call him, Freddy—because he is damn proud of his Freddy Mercury impersonation, which is a total riot. Today, he brought us a picture of himself in complete concert regalia and—except for Freddy’s famous overbite—he was a spitting image.

Todd can wear his glasses again and this makes a big difference. He loves looking at the things going on around him and he devours pictures—especially from architecture magazines. The museum has a nice collection of art on the walls, and the two go off on a viewing tour in Todd’s wheelchair, with Todd wearing his black hoodie and the cool new pants his sister bought him. They inevitably end up in a corner somewhere where they just sit and have quiet time. Tonight, by a window at the end of the hall, Alex read some poems of Pablo Neruda to Todd—the same verses that Todd used to send to Alex in his many love letters.

I should say that things have been quite difficult since Todd’s serious seizures. Stacy, who wheeled him into ICU a couple of weeks ago, told me how fast she’d run to get him there, and how worried she’d been at the time. He’s coming back slower than he did the first time around, but there are good signs: no more breathing tube, and now that his throat is recovering from that painful object, he is respiring easy, swallowing without pain, and resting a LOT more calmly. He and Alex need to be around each other to find the inspired patience that will keep the healing going on its steady forward plod. They give everything they have to each other, and the people around them also give more when they see this.

Here’s hoping the New Year brings Todd home!
Davy

CONTINUED:
I am ticked off at Todd.

When I walked into his room today his eyes were alert, his face was flushed pink and he looked excited, like he had a thing or two on his mind. He waited patiently until I put a chair beside him and sat down. “Do you have something you want to say, Champ?” I asked. He took a bunch of deep breaths and then… he stuck his tongue out.

“Did you just stick out your tongue at me? I don’t believe that!”

This mischievous glow came over him and he started working himself up. Then, after a pretty good effort, he stuck it out again, further this time. “Damn it, Todd” I said. “You set me up!”

We’d been trying to get him to do that little trick for days as he was coming off the sedatives, and he’d been holding out on us. So last night before we left I joked (in front of witnesses, unfortunately) that if he stuck out his tongue I would buy Alex dinner. Alex was pretty excited. No McDonalds. She wanted French. “So if you do it,” she told Todd, “it’s like you’re buying me dinner yourself.”

So OF COURSE the first thing he does when I come in the next day is, he pokes that evil thing out at me. “All right,” I said. “You’re feeling better, aren’t you? Do you know how many euros you may have cost me to prove it?”

So… anybody planning on holding another benefit soon? And could you throw in a little something for Alex’s entrecôte?

Maybe it’s just because Alex has been steadily bombarding me with DVDs of sappy chick flicks (tonight was “Bridget Jones”) but I’ve found myself wondering: How many people could be as truly loving as Todd? To be shackled by a mutinous body for weeks, and the first time he has the chance to prove how much he cares about his girl, he comes through. Sayonara, Hugh Grant!

A few minutes later (as if to rub it in) Todd worked his fingers into a fist. But he wasn’t done showing off. He’s chomping at the bit to get his body back to work again. After a bout of heavy breathing and a pretty good sweat, he raised his head up, maybe an inch—and then his shoulders came towards each other and partly off the pillow.

I haven’t been that pumped up since Johnny Damon’s grand slam in the second inning of the 2004 ALCS. Then—as now—there was still a LONG way to go in the game. But you could just tell we had it in the bag!

Stay tuned…!

Davy

So the rumors are true we are now preparing for our return home, the timing is a bit unclear…..but all gears are working away. Each day will bring us more information.

The weekend was quiet, our favorite nurses no where in sight. (It much more fun and productive when they are underfoot.) On Sunday a family friend stopped in… Bunny. It was a lovely visit, a real blast from the past for Todd. Otherwise the weekend was relatively quiet, with Todd being a bit tired out from his chair. This week will be full of meetings, waiting, and logistical developments. Kisses and dimples shining through…..but it is very real to us here in Amsterdam, how intense those seizures were and it is going to take some time for Todd to regain his stepping and pick up where he left off. I am spending much more time at the hospital and considerably less time with my computer, so you will hear a little less from me over the next few weeks while the puzzle gets put together….

Lovely Moment:
1. Davey walked in to find Todd watching me sleep, with the most adoring look in his eyes. I missed it, guess I was sleeping.
2. The two of us sitting next to eachother in chairs, my head on his shoulder just hanging out, looking out a window. It was a real natural moment for us.

On the pragmatic front it is time to wrap up those letters and packages. It can take over two weeks and I need time to pack up and maybe even mail back some of our belongings. So if there is something you would like Todd to receive, I would mail it by Tuesday at the latest…… but soon we will be home and you can give him whatever you like! Everything would need to arrive here by Christmas if it is to get to us…… and really I would just be turning around and bringing it home……yup coming home. The date is still in the works but it is not long now. We look forward to seeing your faces……and eating fish tacos.

THERE IS NO PLACE LIKE HOME.

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