Big Bend

The day before we left for Big Bend, I received a phone call that I would need to come in and repeat my mammogram.  Not the voicemail you want to hear.  When I called back and hounded the scheduler for more information, she told me it was human error and that one of the images was incomplete.  Mistakes happen, but maybe that's the sort of thing you could double-check for a woman getting her first mammogram after two years of breast cancer treatment?  I went back and repeated the mammogram this week, and they finally gave me the all-clear.  Way to keep me on my toes.  

While we were driving seven hours through West Texas on our way to Big Bend National Park, I had to repeat the phrase "human error" in my mind so that I wouldn't ruin my vacation worrying about it.

We spent the first night at a bubble in Terlingua.  Unfortunately, I forgot to check the moon phase before I booked the trip, and the stargazing was ruined by the full moon.  The kids didn't care, as long as there were s'mores.

The second day, we drove the Ross Maxwell scenic drive and hiked into the Santa Eleña Canyon, where Claire had fun playing in the mud.  Jeff had fun reading all of the informational plaques.  That night, we camped in the Chisos Mountains.  We didn't see any bears or mountain lions, but we were visited by a fox, a skunk, a roadrunner, and a deer.  There were a few complaints from the girls (and Jeff), but they did well overall.  At the top of the Lost Mine trail, Claire professed her love for hiking and said she plans to take her children to Big Bend someday.  Then Julia howled into the canyon.  I'm going to count that as a win.

On the third night, we went to the famous Gage Hotel for dinner on the patio (a welcome change from peanut butter and jelly sandwiches) and stayed at a funky bed & breakfast.  The girls loved playing with the owner's dogs, and I practically had to drag them to the car when it was time to leave.  


When we got back to Austin, I discovered the downside of my habit tracker obsession.  I had to mark four consecutive days with an entire column of red X's, and now my progress graphs are ugly.  I suppose I could've been writing or meditating or stretching while on vacation, but I was too busy doling out snacks from the trunk of our car.

One of my "habits" is wearing a lymphedema sleeve for several hours every few days to prevent fluid buildup.  I recently ordered a new sleeve with a wildflower tattoo print, just for fun.

At first, Julia thought the tattoos were real.  Maybe that explains why a mom from school walked right past me in the post office the other day.  Or maybe it was the change in hairstyle?  Or the new symmetrical boobs?  Who can say?  My look is rapidly evolving.  If you receive a holiday photo card from an unknown yet very attractive woman with a short bob who couldn't be a day over 35, it's probably just me.