Xmas Eve and the New Heart

My cariologist said that some transplant patiences are afraid of their new heart, and such a bad mindset can lead to rejection issues. Not me. I have a mantra: "This is Douglas Whaley's heart; it's my heart now."

And it's been behaving very well. I feel like a kid again---much more energy. Have been working out with stretching exercises and 30 minutes on the exercycle in the basement. Most of my life I have had a rigorus exercise program, including weights and bodybuilding, and I'd like to get back to that by summer of 2010.

I was scheduled to go over to Ann and Tom's house tonight for their ritual Xmas Eve fondue dinner, but Tom is ill, and, of course, since I have very little immune system, I have to stay away. Tomorrow I will go to Art and Lorri's house for the major Xmas dinner they always prepare, and Tom will stay home (so we're taking turns). These are all part of my chosen family group, and we have been together for decades. Wonderful people who love me.

My own son, Clayton, and his wife Maria will fly in from Seattle on the 30th. Clayton will be feted to a major dinner that night in honor of his 37th birthday, which actually occurred the day before. My ex-wife Charleyne will drive in from Indianapolis (we are still good friends; she has been to visit me 4 times since summer), along with her second ex-husband, Roy Gabriel (also a good friend of mine) and his daughter Terry. Roy (everyone calls him "Gabe") and Terry are African Americans, and Clayton grew up in that family in Indy and with me and my partner (I am gay) in Columbus. It was, to say the least, an interesting childhood, but Clayton emerged from it fine. He works in Seattle helping do computer work on the new Boeing 787 Dreamliner (he is in charge of the wiring on the wings), and he speaks, reads, and writes Japanese fluently (which is what got him the job since the wings are being made in Japan). I am throwing a New Year's Eve party in their honor and it looks like around 30 people will attend.


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