Well, this last week and a half has been a doozy. It’s reminded me of a refrigerator magnet I once saw that said “I try to take one day at a time, but some times several days attack me at once.”
The promotion lists came out on Wednesday and unfortunately, I didn’t get promoted. I can look around and see that I’m in some very good company with some excellent colleagues from my A-100 class and from Ciudad Juarez, and I think it’s likely in part due to the much lower promotion rates now than a few years ago due to the hiring surge. It still stings, especially after taking one for the team and going to Ciudad Juarez at the height of the violence and doing good work there. But, since I can look around and see that I’ve got a lot of good company and it was rough going for a lot of people, I feel a little less bummed.
That news came less than a week after I got another, and honestly much more serious, piece of bad news. Last Thursday, I found out that my dad has pancreatic cancer. Cancer is never good, but some are more treatable and less aggressive than others. Pancreatic cancer, unfortunately, falls in the less treatable and more aggressive category. From his scans, the tumor likely can be removed with surgery, but it’s a difficult operation involving multiple organs and a long recovery, and it’s still possible that they could find something that didn’t show up on the scans when they perform the surgery. Even if things go as well as can be expected and they’re able to remove the entire tumor with surgery, the five-year survival rates for pancreatic cancer are still a lot lower than many other types of cancer.
So, it’s rough news. I’m scared that he might not make it through the surgery and that he might not have much time left, even if everything goes very smoothly with the surgery. It hurts to be so far away from my parents as they’re going through this. I wish I could be closer to help with things and spend time with them. But, I have a job that keeps me in DC. At least I’m close enough that I’ll be able to go home for holidays, and will be able to make it home relatively quickly if the need arises. Still, it does make me wish that I could live a little closer to home, at least for a while.
As a result of all of this, I’ve just wanted to hide under the covers and pretend that the last week and a half never happened. Here’s hoping there’s no more bad news for awhile.