Unique Challenges in 2023

It’s natural to think that once we moved into our new home, the challenges would be over, but we’re not quite there yet. Moving into a new home is only phase one of the process. We left behind furniture to either sell or donate at the old house. We also have a lot of stuff to be picked up by the Got Junk folks. One family is keen to buy our Port Moody home and have removed three of four subjects, however, they must sell their home before they can purchase ours. It’s a domino effect and since I have no control over that I try not to fret about it.

We also have smaller things to take care of at the new house. Like buying a new kitchen faucet because the current one barely functions. We also have to figure out where to place the plants we brought with us, including my mom’s rose bush (it was given to me in memory of her passing four years ago). There are also paintings to hang, new furniture deliveries pending, and so forth.

As you’ll see from the photo, I’ve discovered that we have what I think is wisteria (correct me if I’m wrong) growing at the side of our house. Lavender and lilac plants also grow on the property. Since we looked at and purchased the house in November, it’s a nice surprise to see what else will be blooming now that the warm weather has arrived.

Additionally, and this is the personal thing I mentioned in last week’s blog, I had surgery on Thursday to remove a small mass in my chest, near my heart. The surgery went well and the pathologist’s report will be available in about three weeks. The surgeon doesn’t think the growth is cancerous, based on previous CT and PET scans and the MRI in February, but we’ll see. I was allowed to remove the bandages last night and finally take a shower, (this was laparoscopic surgery) but I can’t lift anything over 20 pounds for 6-8 weeks, which means I won’t be a helpful grandma over the coming weeks. Since I had a chest tube inserted after surgery, I had to stay overnight, but received good care at the hospital. I’m taking it easy now and planning to catch up on reading between the mandatory short walks and inevitable naps.

Unfortunately, my sister needs another surgery, as the surgeon apparently wasn’t able to remove all of the cancerous tissue during the April 13th surgery, so she goes back later this month. The good news is that the cancer didn’t spread to her lymph nodes, so chemotherapy won’t be necessary, just radiation. Later this year, my son-in-law is having shoulder surgery, so it seems this is a year for fixing things 😊

I had hoped to get back to work on more mystery writing this spring, but given everything that’s going on, it seems smarter to stick to one thing, which is fantasy writing and research these days. It’s my hope that life will be calmer once summer arrives and I can be more productive, but until then, we do what we can and what we must to be our best selves.

And belated Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms out there! My daughter was sick yesterday, so we’ve postponed our celebration till next weekend.


Author: debrapurdykong

I'm a British Columbia author who's been writing for over 30 years. My volunteer experiences, criminology diploma, and security work inspired me to write the Casey Holland transit security novels set in Metro Vancouver. I'm also a part-time facilitator in Creative Writing Workshops through Port Moody's Recreation program. Feel free to contact me at dpurdykong@gmail.com

25 thoughts on “Unique Challenges in 2023”

  1. Thank you for the update, Debra. Good to hear your surgery went well to remove the mass in your chest. Take lots of rest and recover well. You got some good news about your sister also. The cancer didn’t spread to the lymph nodes is a relief. More surgery seems to be common among my friends and relatives.

    You’re making lots of progress on your moving. We started selling our old house last September and moved into our new house in January. We’re still remodeling.

    I’m not sure if the plant is wisteria. The wisteria flowers hang down. The flowers in your photo hold up. I almost bought a lilac wisteria plant but my backyard is not ready. I bought many rhododendron plants waiting to be planted. Our previous owners didn’t plant anything in the backyard. I’ll have fun doing all the planting.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I always appreciate your insights, Miriam, and thank you. Our lilac blooms seem intertwined with what I thought was wisteria, so now I’m wondering if it’s a lilac wisteria plant? I have a lot to learn about flowers.
      Your observations regarding second surgeries for cancer patients is really interesting. My sister has an appointment with the radiation oncologist on July 12, so I guess that part of the process will be underway in a few weeks.
      Enjoy designing your new backyard. That’s the fun part!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It’s wonderful you’re there for your sister. My hsband’s sister went through it many times. She doesn’t talk about it unless I asked. His side of family is very reserved! Too bad to go through cancer alone.

        I’ll have major construction for the backyard. Right now it’s just a big slope of grass. It’s muddy in the winter, not practicle at all. I’ll make it friendly for my gardening and for the grandkids to run around.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. The plant looks more like a lilac to me but whatever it is, its pretty. I’m glad to hear the surgery went well. Just take it easy so it heals. (Not an easy thing to do when just having moved into a new house. Good luck with the sale of your former home. Always stressful. Sending hugs and a belted Happy Mother’s Day!


  3. Oh my gosh, Debra, that wasn’t really a “Like” I added so much as an acknowledgement. I’m so sorry to hear that you’re dealing with all these health issues in the middle of your move. It’s a question of being able to have it all but not necessarily all at once. I think your writing is just going to have to wait for a bit while you attend to healing and assisting in non-strenuous ways with moving-related and grandma-related activities. Patience in all things. 💕

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  4. Wishing you a speedy recovery but don’t rush it. My fingers are crossed for you.
    The purple flower is lilac and they are out now. Definitely not wisteria, which is a climbing woody vine whose flowers hang downwards. Google them both and you will see the difference.
    I hope you were able to enjoy Mothers’ Day in spite of all that’s going on around you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. We do have climbing woody vines on a trellis out front, and two different types of flowers that seem to be entwined. The lilac definitely has a distinguish scent! My Mother’s Day was quiet, with short walks and lots of napping, but we’ll have a family gathering next weekend, if everyone’s recovered sufficiently.


  5. Challenges always seem to come in clumps, don’t they? The shrub certainly looks like a lilac. It should be interesting to see what else the new-to-you garden shows as the summer progresses. Your plan for rest and recovery sounds like a good idea.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. You’ve been through a lot, moving is the worst as well as the best. Rest and relax and your fantasy writing sounds great, Debra. I agree with Miriam, that looks like a lilac bush, our neighbor has one just like it. Enjoy!


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