Saturday, December 6, 2008

Update on Radiantly Yours

WhoooooooooooooooooooooHoooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo! Ten count em! 10more to go! Monday will start my boost treatments. I am so happy that this is almost over! Hope not to repeat it anytime soon.

What I can tell you about radiation is that my poor boobie feels abused for sure. Remember what it feels like when you first become pregnant? Multiply that by 20 and there ya have it, oh wait add sunburn on top of that............yeah! But just like childbirth you will not remember the pain my dear, once it has passed. Yeah ok.

The other thing is that you would not believe how drained you get, but actually recover rather quicky (unless it is me). Example I go in, full of it and ready to rock and roll and get the raiation, suddenly I am like poof tired. Everyone that knows me will know that in a 55mph I drive 60 or 65mph HAAAAAAAAAAAAAA! no more baby it is more like 35mph.

All in all though it is manageable and if you are out there worrying about your impending treatment, I got one word for ya DON'T you will be ok.

One funny thing, my doc asked me about my up and comming mamo on the other boobie. He thought I was going to get both done, silly man. I told him "NO friggin way was I ready to put my itty bitty in that damm squaching machine!!!" (exact words) and told him it was to be only the left one not the right. He laughed at me and said ya I don't blame you............hee hee like to see him do that. Ahemmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

So I am really wishing and hopeing that the other one is ok because I don't know how long I could keep up a positive attitued if it isn't.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Im burnin, Im burnin, Im burnin for you

Yesterday I went to the radiation center. I was so afraid and alone my skin was crawling. What you say...she was afraid? how could that be? Well chemo scared me yes, but for some reason radiation scares me more. I guess because I know it could compromise my physical comfort zone. I mean I purposely stay OUT of the sun to avoid sunburn because it makes me so miserable for so long, make me nauseous, itchy, not to mention the pain of burns. Yes I am afraid, and yes I am a big wuss so sue me.

My youngest daughter went with me to all my chemo sessions and I got through them like a breeze, lucky me. There were times I was having problems but I am tough so I made it through. I will make it through this too but yesterday no one in the world could have convince me of that.

So anyway, on the way naturally I was listening to my very loud radio on my favorite classic rock station, and they started playing this song that in the beginning didn't quite register. You know how you listen to music and just sing along and don't really pay attention? Well I got to the chorus part and it hit me. How freakin ironic this song is playing, and I didn't know if I should laugh or cry so I did what any red blooded woman would do and did both! Ha ha yes I know silly but nevertheless ..... so anyway

If you want to hear the song click on the music box top right of page

And here are the lyrics
Home in the valley
Home in the city
Home isnt pretty
Aint no home for me

Home in the darkness
Home on the highway
Home isnt my way
Home Ill never be

Burn out the day
Burn out the night
I cant see no reason to put up a fight
Im living for givin the devil his due
And Im burnin, Im burnin, Im burnin for you
Im burnin, Im burnin, Im burnin for you

Time is the essence
Time is the season
Time aint no reason
Got no time to slow

Time everlasting
Time to play b-sides
Time aint on my side
Time Ill never know

Burn out the day
Burn out the night
Im not the one to tell you whats wrong and whats right
Ive seen suns that were freezing and lives that were through
And Im burnin, Im burnin, Im burnin for you
Im burnin, Im burnin, Im burnin for you

On with it, I went and was promptly put into a room with two men. They were stranger and I was nakie from the waist up. Does the word uncomfortable come to mind? I know they are professionals, and have seen millions of boobs before me, (ha ha) not that I am a boob! but hey they never saw mine! and mine never saw them! So yes I was uncomfortable and embarrassed. You would think that I would cease to feel this way after all I have been through but there it is.

They went on to explain how this was going to go, the drawing of lines with a sharpie marker all over my chest, then the laying of the thin wire, going into the CT machine and then meeting yet another doctor who would come in a speak to me. After all that the tattoos. Yes they drop little blobs of ink on you and take a needle and poke ya in the weirdest places leaving permanent marks. Looking at them now I wonder how they will tell which are freckles and which are tattoos? I suppose the redness will eventually subside. So my chest now looks like a dot to dot page from one of the kids activity books. Talk about graffiti! a new body art form "boob graffiti" interesting concept.

A Decision Was Made
I made a rather important decision. No one was there but the doctor and myself as he explained that I should consider getting radiation to my lymphnodes. Ok well I thought this was already worked out so it came as a surprise to me.

Lymphnode radiation is highly controversial he told me, and sometimes it helps and sometimes it doesn't. So ok my mind is lacking at this point so I ask him what are the consequences? Definitely more problems concerning lymphedmia in my right arm and side. Explain problems? well you could swell up to 4 or 5 times more than it is now. Question from me - would I still be able to do detail drawing, writing, using my arm? Answer - not sure but there is always physical therapy (yeah for the rest of my life). Ok I say, give me percentages please. Hell he doesn't know I suck a math especially percentages but what the heck I thought if I acted smart he may tell me more. He was definitely going for the YES answer. So he told me, one really knows for sure yet, it is still experimental but, 10% is the bottom line. So that is 5% that it will help, and 5% that it won't? yes he said. So my decision is that NO I will not endure radiation to my arm or lymphnodes. It is a chance I am willing to take, however I can't say this choice would be the same for everyone. He said that there is a chance that cancer remains in my lymph system, but if the chemo didn't get it and there is no way of telling, then to me it makes sense that if - that little f****er is still there it has long since travelled to other places. I will just have to deal with it then. Oh and did I mention the cost? OMG! between $1200.00 and $30,000.00 per treatment and with no insurance I won't even live long enough to pay it all, even if I make it to my 90's! Add the rads to the lymphnodes and up that anty again. So I am not usually a gambling person but this time I am taking my chances and pray I am right.

After all that, I had to remain completely still as I went into the tube while it clicked and clicked. That was nothing, I am not claustrophobic and the hardest part was to be still. I swear the blood on me pools if I remain in any one position for more than say 5 minutes. I did it though with the threat of "or we will have to start over!" ha ha no way jose' I will not move no matter how painful. They practically had to lift me off the table as my back was frozen by the time we got done. The good news is that during the actual radiation it will be no more than 11 minutes and no less than 5 mins.

My bobbie shots went before a panel of "experts" to determine the least invasive angles in which to radiate me. They will call me in a week or less to give me my actual schedule, because once you start they don't want to stop unless you have an emergency situation or become ill. The techie guys, yeah I forgot their names told me that I am not allowed to diet and must eat properly. It appears that the weight loss that I may have is because radiation burns calories - alot. They said I will become more tired but they think because I handled chemo so well that I will have no problems with this. I am not a complainer usually and I try not to bi**h alot so they said I will do fine, bite the bullet and ride the wave to recovery. Ha ha so poetic.

After that I went to the billing managers office. I figured that was coming. She kept me a long time, very nice lady. I won't go into the details but I have to agree to a payment plan and stick to it. She told me about going to CFS to apply for Breast and Uterine Cancer insurance from the state. Well dang, no one told me about this being offered before. Not sure I can qualify because I didn't qualify for state assistance before because of $7.00 - yes that's right seven. There are a few other things I need to check out too.

On the way home guess what song was playing? (answer below)

All in all my visit lasted from 11am until 2:30, got home at 3pm exhausted. Skipped eating all day and took a nap instead. Zzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

"We are the Champions" by Queen one of my favorite groups!

Friday, October 10, 2008

Just Wanted to Share

I read this on one of my list this morning and wanted to share it. Since I have no real news to share about me or mine thought this would fill in the blanks, and it so mirrors my thoughts even though I did not write it.

Note: This poem was one of Audrey Hepburn's favourite poems to quote,
and has been erroneously attributed to her. It was actually written by
Sam Levenson and read by Audrey Hepburn on Christmas Eve, 1992
and also on occasion when she was asked for beauty tips.
[From Audrey Hepburn by Barry Paris, 1996, Putnam]

Audrey Hepburn although before my time was one of my most favorite actresses to watch over and over again. I have to admit I am an old movie lover.

Time Tested Beauty Tips
by Sam Levenson

For attractive lips,
Speak words of kindness.

For lovely eyes,
Seek out the good in people.

For a slim figure,
Share your food with the hungry.

For beautiful hair,
Let a child run his or her fingers through it once a day.

For poise,
Walk with the knowledge you'll never walk alone.

People, even more than things, have to be restored,
renewed, revived, reclaimed and redeemed;
Never throw out anybody.

Remember, if you ever need a helping hand,
you'll find one at the end of your arm.

As you grow older you will discover that you have two hands;
one for helping yourself,
the other for helping others.

By Sam Levenson (1911-1980)
From his book: "In One Era & Out the Other"

Saturday, October 4, 2008

And So Life Goes On ...a breast cancer soap story

"I am the one who is strong enough to carry the life that God has given me" I don't know where this came from but I like it, I feel it and I borrowed it. If I am overstepping here someone tell me.

Ok well I went for all my appointments this week and don't know a whole lot more than I did last week.
Chemo is done for that I am truly grateful! I am totally exhausted and sleeping alot more for some reason, my nerves are a bit edgy as I get closer to radiation. Silly I know but anything new upsets my self lately. Still in my mind I am doing the happy dance that no more infusions. I wish they would take my port out but they want to leave it there "just in case". Ha just in case well I don't plan on a "just in case!" Wondering how far the mind can heal a person before she looses the mind? ya more dark humor that few understand.

So the new radiation doctor was very nice. I hope they don't switch me again, as I said I don't deal well with changes. I miss the original doctor, she was the bomb! On the 16th I will go for a simulation, this is where they do everything to get you ready and do a mock radiation treatment. The next day will start my treatments that will be for every day at the same time. The doc said that I can expect to feel like I have a bad sunburn on my little itty bitty. Ya I say easy for you with the dark skin. I have paper white skin on that area and oh I don't like sunburn. I guess I need a gallon or two of Aloe Gel and some creams. I have a few to try so try I will. I had some BP problems while there but there was good reason, however in spite of that she decided to give me some anti anxiety drugs, nothing much just a little something to take the edge off.

What got me going before the appointment was this. I was about ready to leave and just outside my door is a strung out little chick with her ginormous pit bull who was about to take a crap in my yard right in front of my porch. I see her and start yelling "ARE YOU LETTING YOUR DOG SHIT IN MY YARD????????????????????????" along with some other bad words. She just looks at me and says "oh sorry" so I ask her if she would like a bag? and she said no, were ok. Well this sent me over the edge more than a bit. I know I scared the crap out of her and the dog obviously because his turd went right back up where is came from and they moved on down the street. I mean come the hell on! I would never consider letting my dog do that whilst on a leash especially! I think the girl was a bit "cracked out" she looked it unless it was pure fear. I have had a problem with this dog before he likes to get on my porch when he gets out and pee on my chairs. I don't know where they live but when I find out, I may be calling someone to make her understand the facts of life of living within the city limits with a dog. As you can see I am still PO'ed.

So I am driving to my doctor's office that is less than a mile away and get behind a long stream of traffic. Ok well that is pretty normal in the am around our little town. No problem, the sign is posted 25mph. Well behind me is some big wheeled black truck with loud rap music playing and suddenly the music is off and the driver starts yelling at me out the window, followed by gestures of all sorts, name calling, etc. HELLO!!!!!!!!!!!!! is it my fault the speed limit is 25mph? Is it my fault all the people in front of me travel to work at their own pace? heck no so do I take all this abuse? Hell NO! So I just gesture back as any red blooded, already stress out woman would do. So this truck guy decides he is going to take a side street and try to cut people off. Ok I think good luck with that, it's your dream make it whatever you want. Low and behold the person when he gets there to cut off just happens to guessed it me! Again I am like oh Hell NO! I speed up a bit and oops he can't cut in without hitting me or the car behind me. Ha ya trick, though you were gonna one up me did ya? Ok so I am sometimes a bit extreme but damn I get just as irritated as the next girl and was feeling my Cheerios. I continued on to the doctor and the results were an agitated, higher than normal BP so I was pardoned after I explained it.

Yesterday I went to a church. It was to meet with someone that Social Security wanted to do a mental health check on me. Well not sure how I did but I am here to tell ya, I don't think I could pass the test on a good ole normal day! I mean who was the president in 1879? how the heck should I know, I was absent from school that day. Guess what the guy asking didn't know either because I asked him ok well who was it? No answer, well either that it is hidden by the Pentagon or something of the secret service dept. Geesh! I had around 4 hours of testing, and it was about math, which I truly suck, and the order of things, playing with blocks, remembering too much (not my strong point) so on average not sure how I scored. That is another secret. He dug into my brain, until it made me cry. His questions about my brother, my mother, my family in general. Then asked me if I was depressed? Well gee whiz I wasn't until I came here! you jerk! Truly I was happily skipping along until that little interview and testing. Trust me it does nothing for your self esteem. So after all that I was told to go home. Will I succeed in getting disability? doubt it. You know that really frost my pumpkin! If I was a drug addict or alcoholic I would get it, if I wanted to pretend to have a pinched nerve in my back or neck I would get it. I just want a little help until I am able to work, it isn't like I am ready to retire. Our government truly sucks ass.

So in spite of the above mentioned. All is well. On with my life and try to make each day a new one. I am starting aging of thinking about my crafts and drawing all the things that make me happy. I just need to get my hands and feet working properly so I do more than make a mess. My hair is starting to grow in, it is very curly more so than before. I think I will need the industrial flat iron in the future. Not sure of the color as it seems to change every day. My fingernails are still striped and very breakable. They are sensitive too, kind of like when you break a nail way far down, you know that icky feeling you get? I still have the needle jabs and numbness in my lower limbs and hands and the lymphedemia is still present but manageable. All in all considering what I have read from other BC persons I am doing quite well. It all a day in the life of survivorship.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Out of the Darkness

YaaaaaaYhoooooooooooo! I finished my last chemo yesterday, now I just have a week for feeling miserable from this stuff one last time, and hopefully it won't happen again! Anyway knowing that this step is over at last, will make it go quicker and part of me will be shining through and maybe not feeling so bad.

I do have some residual effects going on like the nerve pain called neuropathy. My lower legs, feet, and my fingers are numb most of the time now and feel at times like someone is sticking me with tiny little needles at the most inopportune times. This too will go away. I try to walk, and squeeze a rubber ball to combat it which sometimes works and sometimes does not work. My fingernails have stripes on them going across the nail and they have thinned alot, and are very tender. My toenails are ugly but they were before anyway. Hey they didn't fall off! Yippie!

I also have some weird memory problems, like forgetting what I am doing, or saying in the middle of a sentence. I use to multitask quite well and now I can't but I am told this will not last forever a year at the most.

Then there is the fear of wondering if this will manifest it's ugly face again in the same, or other part of my body. I try to think positive, but know I have to be aware of changes in my body and get regular check ups which is not one of my strong points. I never went to doctors before this, I ministered myself and this is where I landed. I don't want this fear to take over but believe me it has a mind of it's own and is always there pecking and nagging me. As I said before, it is not the fear of dying but more of the fear of what I would have to go through. It sort of chips away at your spirit being pumped full of drugs, changing your usual way of life, and all the other crap you go through. Not to mention the look in my precious children and grandchildren and my pets who still need me. Of course I know all my relatives love and want me around but they don't need me. So all of this wrapped into a big ball causes the fear.

In a week or two I get to start radiation that will bring me to the New Year. It is scary to me to know that I will first be tattooed, manipulated into impossible positions, and get a beam of radiation to whatever parts necessarily. I asked the reason for this and was told that it will get the stragglers. The tiny cancer seeds that don't die or escape that I undoubtedly have because I have an aggressive metastatic brand of cancer. So if I wish to continue on with body parts that I don't want to loose I will do this. It will make me tired, and all of the stuff I have heard is very rare. Tiredness is the top complaint, burning on sensitive skin that has never seen the sun is another. So OK I can do this! The whole process of this daily activity will take about 15 minutes total, from undress to treatment to re dress and out the door. It will me a mild inconvenience to have to go everyday but at least it is really just a short drive down the street.

I was told that I will have to keep my port in place for about a year. The infusion center is happy about that, because then they get to see me once a month for flushing the port. Ha ha didn't know I was so loved. They are a really great group of professionals and they liked me because I didn't sit there and whine. I yelled once but with good reason lol. I like to ride the wave of benadryl they give me rather than sleep it off. Yesterday they got me though, my daughter didn't go with me this time and they gave me 50mgs of benadryl instead of the usual 25 - 35 mg and it finally got me and I hope I didn't snore.

Well that's it for now, keep me in your thoughts and prayers. Hope I could help some of you who may be going through this. Oh yes I almost forgot my hair is growing! My Onc Dr. McDreamy Funnyman said it will start growing really fast now that chemo is done. Wonder if he just said that to uplift my spirit?

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Update on stuff

Sorry I haven't posted in a while for those interested. I haven't had a big presence on the Internet lately including my groups.
I am tired! just not feeling the love of Internet right now, in part because I feel like I am really fighting within right now with this monster and in part because I am just plain tired from all the chemo. This too shall pass. I am not down in spirit just blah.

Had some bad news of late. My daughter in law's father has received news that he has terminal lung and liver cancer. They offered him treatment that would extend his life for 12 to 18 months, the other option is that he do nothing and has 3 to 6 months. He chooses to do nothing. I have to respect his individual decision, however it angers me that a person will not at least try to live. But as I said it is his decision. Hospice arrived at his house last Friday and set up so I think he will not be with us long. Sad for my daughter in law and her children and of course her Mother so I pray for their peace.

Second my Mother In Law passed away last Sunday morning. She was 96 yrs old. By the time I got to her, one hour later to say goodbye she was already gone. She was a good woman, always taking care of others and will be sadly missed by all of her family. She passed of old age, she had osteoporosis and degenerative disc and spine disease that became infected and infiltrated her kidneys she was in great pain for two weeks. I am glad she no longer suffers. She was cremated today and shipped to Jamestown NY her home town.

Lastly a long time acquaintance of mine who also had breast cancer passed this past weekend. She leaves behind her son, age 25 and her daughter, age 23. Judy was a strong woman, courageous, and very down to earth. I met her in 1990 when she came to work at WalMart. Her husband passed away that Christmas, and we became friends. Four years ago she was diagnosed with breast cancer, she was devastated but decided to fight for her life. Her cancer was removed and she went through treatment and it metastasized to her ovaries, which were promptly removed along with all the other parts, then it spread to her bones, liver and etc. She undergone various treatment each time loosing hair, teeth, weight, gaining weight all the stuff that happens. I am angry that her last day on earth was spent working at friggin WalMart! but I am glad she no longer suffers. Rest in peace girlfriend.
So if you all want to pray for all of these souls and their families you would be doing me a great service because I can use all the help I can get. I don't care what religion, color, orientation etc you are, I am sure that God listens to us all.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Cry Me A River

I don't know what the problem is but I am having one. I cannot concentrate on jack crap these days, I feel weak and tired all the time and my self esteem is at an all time low. Cry me a river. I get my overly happy manic moments too, wow hormonal? I think I am stuck in the "POOR ME" phase of this BS so I am trying not to post.

Had my weekly dose of chemo last Thursday. It was fun, oh blood return on that port again. My left arm is all black and blue again from them trying to get a little blood out of me. My body just don't want to give it up! I ended up being at the center for 5 hours, and then had to go back at night to try again. I got the chemo, and finally at 6:30 pm we got a blood return! I was exhausted. Got home got ready for bed and decided to check my email. Suddenly I am wired and awake until 1 AM, last night same thing only I was up until 2:30 AM. Thinking I will go to bed early tonight and hopefully nothing will kick in to prevent that. Maybe it is the steroids? Who knows but it makes me eat that's for sure.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Today My HERO Died

Today my one and only real hero stepped on through to the other side. My hero's name you ask? Professor Randy Pauch.

In case you don't know who he is, he was the energetic, beautiful man that gave "The Last Lecture" at the Carnegie Mellon University at Pittsburgh where he was a professor.

His body was consumed with cancer, his life and time limited, but what he left behind was even more than a simple gift of true love for humankind. He left us the ultimate gifts of courage, hope, humor. He shared with us the heartbreak, laughter, dreams of adventure, faith, teaching us that life in its fullness is good.

I have been saying a lot, mostly to my kids lately that we are given gifts in our life, we are born with them, it is like a toolbox of life. It is our choice how we use the tools. We are given everything we need to survive and become whatever we want to become, well I believe that Randy Pauch knew how to use the tools and he tried desperately to teach us how to use them. He said once that as we progress through life there are roadblocks and brick walls, they are put there for a reason, we are suppose to knock them down, that is part of our purpose, our learning process. I guess that is one of the major reasons I loved this man, it is the way I have always felt about life. Too bad I didn't listen sooner, and learn how to use my tools.

Randy was enormous. It is as if he was a good soul that was on loan to us. He is gone now and will be sadly missed by this person but I do understand the process and I know that his energy abounds. I will continue to pray for his wife and children so that they may seek comfort in their time of need.

On Tuesday night, ABC will be airing a 2 hr special on Randy Pauch. I strongly urge you to watch it, even after his death he is leaving a strong message and I guarantee you will benefit some way in your life if you watch it and listen. Even if you are as healthy as an ox you will benefit.

Peace and Love Randy, enjoy your journey.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Chemo, Pedicures, Manicures, Steakhouse Blues and Beads! OH MY!!!

Yesterday I went for my new chemo regime that will be for the next 12 weeks every week. The new drug of choice is Taxol. This one takes 3 hrs tops to get er done. They gave me some pre meds like Benedryl, Dexamethasone, and Lorazepam and Zofran along with some saline. This stuff almost put me in dreamland but my daughter was with me so she kept me awake. The pre meds are to keep me from getting sick from the new poison. The nurse gave me a print out, which I glanced over a little and she asked me some questions. The head nurse came over and gave me some cute little caps she was saving for me. That was sweet of her, I guess she is tired of my old ones lol but I do have my favorites. The girls there are so nice!

Afterwards I wanted to come home and take a nap but my darling 7yr old grand daughter is here so...........she and Tama decided that G'ma needed a pedicure and manicure. We went and we all got our toe nails and finger nails done.

Mai and I got patrotic and got flags on our big toes and thumbs and red with sparkles on the rest except I got fireworks on my fingernail. Tama wasn't that adventurous but still stylish. I had to be a kid of course and entertain my Mai! I got to say that pedicure thing is the way to go! You sit in a massage chair, soaking your feet in a bubble jet and this Korean girl comes and descales your feet and massages your calves and feet then she does the cuticles and cuts and files. It is so relaxing. Wish I could do it more often. I don't know what it cost but I would bet more than $100.00 for the three of us. Tama was feeling wealthy after working a 40 hr. week with 70 hrs. overtime. She is exausted but having fun with the money. You can see how swollen my hands and feet are due to the chemo and, I still have old and ugly feet and hands but hey I used them alot!

After all that we went to the Japaneese Steakhouse for dinner. It is called Osaka's. Awsome food, and way more than any of us could eat. I brought alot of it home and it will feed me a week but if it isn't gone in 3 days out it goes. I suppose I could freeze it. Tama took home 3 containers and when she woke up this morning it was all gone! Her boyfriend and his buddies got the munchies sometime durrning the night while she was finally sleeping. She wasn't so happy about that so I offered her mine but she wouldn't take it. I think when my big Sissy and my Neice come we should go there, my neice is a vegetarian and I think she would like it besides it is way cool, they cook the food in front of you on a huge grill and it is so entertaining! They do have meat for us carnivors though and seafood if you want it.

When we got back Tama left for the night and Mai and I made paper beads until 10pm. I put her to bed, she camped out on my bedroom floor, we made her a bed with the couch cushions and she was comfy. I was exausted but so wound up and couldn't sleep. I stayed up until 2am reading. Got up bright and early this am and now I can't wait for bedtime! I am still jittery from the chemo though so who knows if I will sleep. Wish me luck!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Ok so here's the deal. I was sick as hell the last few days but seem to be alright now. I am still feeling the effects of the last chemo, and I am so glad that it was the last of that particular poison. I think another and it would have landed me in the local hospital Hilton. My blood pressure is still flip flopping and my guts still feel like they are being turned inside out but I am better!

On a happy note, I retrieved my Momma from the hospital yesterday. Her surgery was a week ago today and my God she is unbelievable! She is sore as heck, this time they used staples. Yes they look just like the ones we load into our staple guns to tack up wood and stuff. She has a strong appetite and is content, the only thing I know that would make her happier is that if she got expanded cable. She only wants it so she can watch the rest of race season but when I go visit today I will ask her if she wants me to order it for her.

Oh did I mention that my hair is trying to grow back? yup I have about 1/4 inch of white stuff. Yes white, I think maybe my red hair is gone forever. We will see, the doc told me not to get use to it because the next round of chemo will most likely fry it off again. In spite of the lack of hair, it is still HOT but I blame that on the Florida weather.

Well that is about it for today, have not done much to write about. I did work on a few crafty things here and there and will try to post them on my other blog sometime today.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

I May Have Crashed, But I Didn't Burn!

NOTE * If your here to see the Queen of the Night she is on the other blog about art and you can get there by clicking the link on the top right of this page.

Well what a exciting day! Started as usual, me causing a ruckus in the chemo room. I swear they are just too stoic in there! So Tama and I were talking and laughing and soon everyone in the room joined in. My "new" nurse said oh I see we have a comic in the house, my reply was oh yes they book me every three weeks, to provide you with quality entertainment. The regular nurse Kristin was there and she pipes in "oh we have missed you!"
There was a conversation about cows going on it was so dang funny I had tears running down my cheeks. A couple of the nurses that bring supplies in were talking about their pet chickens, which led to pet cows and they were trying to one up each other. Well the one nurse started talking about the names she gave her cows Mr. T and Elsie the other one say well my cowssssssssss names are Bar B Que, Brisket and Rump Roast. Why the heck I found this so funny I don't know but I couldn't let it go. But I can't help but wonder what they call the pigs!

So on with the Crash

Had my last of the koolaid (adyramycin, cyotoxin) cocktail today and my body objected heavily. I really didn't know it, I was too busy trying to keep focused on my panicked daughters face, and was speaking in a forign language obviously because no one knew what the heck I was saying, including me lol.

My blood pressure dropped suddenly from 147/87 to 99/62, I was cold, then hot, then cold ping ponging. I stopped breathing according to the machine but I swear once again I was breathing just fine, slower maybe but breathing. The heart monitor said my heart was going wonky. The questions were do you have heart problems, no I say none - what? answer the question! I did answer the damm question NO HEART PROBLEMS! ok roger that.

The nurse is a tattle tale too she is going to call the doctor and tell him how I am so he knows when I go for my shot tomorrow. Kill joy!

Well it turns out that it was either from not eating before chemo, or because the nurse was pushing it in too hard and fast. Who knows but I am ok now and don't remember that much. After that my daughter took me to lunch at Quiznos.

So any way that is done and I am happy. In three weeks I will start 12 (not 10 as origionally told) weekly treatments of Taxol. Another chemo. The doctor said it will be like a walk in the park compared to this. The nurse said, yeah well you will loose anymore hair you may have, and your nails could fall off, you could break out ect. Everyone reacts differently she said, and you will have compazine with it.
This nurse is so full of hope. She needs some "Moon" style lessons on her bedside manner to be sure, but hey guess you can't be mad at the messenger.

The one think I hope it doesn't affect is the brain cells, I am having alot of trouble with remembering what I did, when I did it and sometimes I just don't care enough to remember because well ...... I don't remember! LOL such is life and it will go on.

YeeeeeeHawwwww! sometimes ya just gotta grab life by the balls and run!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

On a Positive Note!

I got some really GREAT new today! I went to the doctor and the doctor said....... next week will be your last A/C treatment! He said I only had to have the four (4) count em of the A/C. After this last one, in 3 weeks I will start the next one, of Taxol for 10 weeks uggghhhhhhhhhhhhh. That's once a week for ten weeks and then if all is good I will be done with the chemo phase of the treatments. He said that the taxol is like a walk in the park compared to the A/C so I am counting on his expertise. Hopefully it won't make me sick.

My hair is actually trying to grow, little fuzzies but not sure if I will keep it. The doc said probably not. My eyelashes are thinning in spots but I am an expert at mascara and hide it well.

Saturday, May 31, 2008

I've Got Chemo Brain...What's Your Excuse?

Ok I am convinced it is official, chemo brain has set in. I have always been proficient at multitasking, lately I am lucky if I can remember one little thing. Regular stuff seems like a far reach lately, like remebering if I just went to the bathroom for instance. Funny you would think any normal person would know lol it is sneeking into my brain cells. Another thing, who thought that watercolors actually bleed? why in the world would water make them run? Oh my! If that isn't enough I added more sugar and creamer to my already fixed cuppa, yuck! I do not like that much goo in my java.

On a more positive note, I woke up this morning with Bob Marley singing to me, yup at 5:15am he was singing the song "Every Little Things Gonna Be Allrightttt" of course once I was awake I realized he wasn't really in my bedroom playing his guitar. Now that song, like a worm, is stuck in my head weaving it's way throughout my day. I did go back to sleep until 7:30 wondering if I pee'd or not? who knows? but I do know that Bob Marley is still singing to me! and I have to pee.

I hear that reading, and art makes the boogy man go away, I have been trying that. So far the study I am performing is unfounded. What am I reading you ask? hell if I know I can't find my book!

I think I will get my shower and visit my Momma today, I think she is wanting to go to Wal-Greens, hope we can find the store!

PS I had to come back, I forgot to tell you that the baby should be here on the 6th, providing Ama doesn't do anything stupid like go into labor before that!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Grandma Again (almost)

Wow looks like I may be a Grandma again by the weekend! I am worried to death about it because my daughter has a condition called placenta previa. She is on strict bed rest until Friday when the doctor will decide if she will have a C-Section and which day they pick. Of course you who know Ama, knows that she is kicking and screaming about all this. For instance, the bed rest that she was ordered on? well that will start today even though the order was given two days ago. Why? because Ama said "she had things to do!" If I could smack her rear I would just to set her in line! She is scared of the C-Sec and no amount of Mom talk or Sis talk is helping her with that. I wish I could be there with her at this time.

Her little sister is trying to make plans to go up there, and no one is talking. I think she plans on staying and is afraid to tell me that. I did see her post on myspace though and that is the indication. I think she should go, and get out of this town and try to make a new life but, and there is one...I wish she would go to another part of the state. She and her sis will not get along for very long when they live in close proximity to each other. No one will miss her as much as me, I cry just thinking about it but I do want whats best for her, so she will never know. She doesn't read this blog, because she doesn't know about it so I can say what I want here lol.

Today will be my third chemo. I dread this process, and in the back of my mind I am afraid of this time. I don't have a clue why, maybe it is because yesterday the nurses at the hospital kept asking me how I feel, and if I was sick ect. It is kind of like when you go out and party and drink way too much and make yourself sick. Why would ya? well that is how I feel about chemo. It is much the same feeling. I did get some more drugs (just what I needed) to deal with the aftereffects. The trouble is that one of them makes me super susceptible to any kind of germs, so what now am I suppose to live in a bubble? Just call me bubbles now there's a thought!

So I may sound a little bummed today, but there is light at the end of this somewhere I just have to find it, and find it I will. Still believing that everything happens for a reason, I have to try and keep a light heart

Friday, May 16, 2008

As If I Didn't Have Enough!

Wow is all I can say right now. Our family took another hit below the belt yesterday. I took my Mom to get her checkup and colonoscopy and heard the dreaded words "her cancer is back". I guess I knew in my heart that is the news we would hear, because I knew it was only a matter of time.

Two years ago she found out about the cancer, had a resection and was declared cancer free. She opted for no additional treatment - no chemo or rads. I was like ok with it because she was cancer free. I still thought that it would come back one day and it has hung like a cloud for 2 years.

I am not sure how I am suppose to juggle my treatments and her crisis at this point but I have to think it will all work out. She will be having surgery as soon as possible, the doctor will call to set it up as soon as the labs confirm what he said was 95% sure to be.

So it is a sad day around here, I hate to see her go through this again. She is 83 and a strong woman but at 83 I am not sure how much her little body can take. I can't help but wonder if she "knew" and didn't complain because of my situation. I suppose I will never know for sure.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

There once was a woman who woke up one morning, looked in the mirror,
and noticed she had only three hairs on her head.
Well," she said, "I think I'll braid my hair today?"
So she did and she had a wonderful day.
The next day she woke up, looked in the mirror and saw that she had
only two hairs on her head."H-M-M," she said,"I think I'll part my
hair down the middle today?"
So she did and she had a grand day.
The next day she woke up, looked in the mirror and noticed that she
had only one hair on her head."Well," she said,"today I'm going to
wear my hair in a pony tail."So she did and she had a fun, fun day.
The next day she woke up, looked in the mirror and noticed that
there wasn't a single hair on her head."YEA!" she exclaimed,"I don't
have to fix my hair today!"

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Don't try this at home!

Got Cancer?

Here is a little movie to explain a few things. It embodies the way you must feel in order to survive.

The Survivor Movie

I have just come off a 5 day Chemo drunk as I call it. I was good on thursday, and ok on friday then all hell broke loose. Sick and sicker but thanks to the powers that be I am feeling quite well today! I call it a chemo drunk because it feels alot like morning sickness, motion sickness, then hangover from when you drank way too much. We have all been there right? well maybe not but I have and now I am revisiting that old sick feeling without the benefit of the night before. LOL

I will say this, it had better work this shot because I will not be doing this again. I have 19 more fricken weeks to go, and I won't give up but by then enough will be enough. After this I have to get that thing called radiation, not too please with that though but will give it a shot.

Anyway watch the movie, it is awsome, it says it all. Hugs for now!

Friday, April 25, 2008

I May Be Loosing My Hair But I Still Have My Wings!

Aw www the things we do to amuse ourselves. Today I am clowning around a bit. It all started in the shower, yes weird I know. Well I am minding my own business and suddenly I think I have a bug on me, jump and almost fall, another bug JUMP DAMMIT! No bugs thank the good bug God, just more hair and more and more. Jump and look again just in case.

So it is like hair autumn around here and I am contemplating shaving my head and getting it over with, but if I shave my head will I not have a bunch of tiny hairs to deal with? GROSS!

I get out of the shower and find one of Grandma Harriet's old scarves, thinking AHA AA I will tie it up to catch what must fall. Well I suck at scarves, it better be a ready made Do Rag that I just have to knot or it just isn't gonna happen. Then I remember the hat my sissy bought me, along with a fall. Well I don't need the fall yet but here's to the HAT!

As I was messing around, playing dolly makeup with my face and hat I got to thinking I still have my wings! So some of you may know what the hell I am talking about eh Sis? LOL!!!!! I will always have my wings! It runs in the family. Decided to take a pic, this ones for you my dear sweet sister whom I miss SOOOOOOOOFREAKING BAD right now!

Today is my little Ashton's 2nd Birthday, and I don't get to see him. I am sad over that. The daycare has a run on chicken pox, runny nose's and croup. I cannot see my babies until the threat is gone. I miss them. That's OK I am sure they want to see me next year, and the years to come, so be it.
this is Ash looking tough. Hmmmmmm wonder if he would let me borrow his ball cap?

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Hair Watch not Baywatch

Ya know I think it is funny that some of my friend, family and care taker's are on hair watch lately.

This is for you NOPE NOT YET.....but soon. It is coming out by the hands full today, all I have to do it touch it. My roots are sore but remember I have a heck of a lot of hair. It doesn't even look thin yet.

My charming hubby make a crack last night about how it could come out just on top and he could just see me with the Bozo effect! LOL well if that happens, I honestly will be tempted to put on Bozo makeup just for the occasion! Well it was funny oh how we amuse ourselves.....

It is quite annoying today though, I keep getting hairs where I don't want them to land, like in my food, my mouth, my dogs mouth, the table, the sink well you get the picture. Well at least it isn't the chunks of hair I heard about.

So for now we are on RED ALERT for HAIR WATCH!

Good Day (said in the Paul Harvey tone)

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

The Party's Over

Ok after one week of hell I feel GREAT! and I still have my hair!!!

Let me tell you about Neulasta, not a pretty story so if you don't want to hear me bitch and complain go to the next paragraph. I got my Neulasta shot, no big deal right? well on last thursday at 3am I woke up with the most ungodly pains throughout my whole body, no temp, but uncontrollable shaking. I never felt so much pain and that would include all previous operations and childbirthing. So I took my pain meds that I had left over from the lymph node dissection. I got sick, sick and sicker and still ached all over. I think I now know how one feels to be put on a
15th century stretcher you know the ones used for torture. Called the doctor and they called in another script for something different, unfortunately same results. I was told that is because I am so young, and my bones are "younger" than my real age. Go figure.

ok so today I go see my Dr. McDreamy and he tells me that the next time and I am saying what makes you think I will do that again????are you nuts???? he said "THE NEXT TIME sigh lets try taking a Clairatin before the shot". Apparently there have been studies going on about how Clairatin helps people who suffer bone pain from Neulasta. Ok, I agreed, leaning towards the door. He also said that with each chemo treatment the pain from Neulasta will go away because my body will actually need it more. Next I asked how many more treatments because I knew I had to have 6 rnds of A/C but thought Taxol was a pill. No he said Taxol will be once a week for 9weeks. All in all I am looking at 21 more weeks of this crap. The Taxol he said would be like a walk in the park, which is ok with me as long as the temperature isn't over 75* I also lost two more pounds, that is 4 in one week, heck maybe mama was right. (see below about the Chemo Diet)

So after all that I came home, so I don't catch any cooties from being out in public without my armor and painted a picture for Earth Day. That's over on my other blog. Great Day, beautiful weather, happy puppy, what more could I ask for?

Oh hey try the new Ocean Spray cranberry and pomegranit juice with a shot of gingerale and slice of lemon, and lots of ice, taste like a wine cooler but much healthier.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

First Chemo Down! WhoooooHooooo!

Ok here's the deal, had my first round today and feel ok - for now. I am actually higher than a kite lol weird effect, I feel like I toked a fat one (blunt) that lasted all day. I was told that about 3am it will wear off and my bliss will end but for now hey what a deal and it is legal!

Only thing I feel is weird, and the bottoms of my feet burn, my hands are tingly, and my throat is sore and my mouth feels very fuzzy. Remember the soap that when you got it wet it would grow fuz? Think 1960 something. That is my mouth tonight yuck! I am also extremely tired (yes more than usual)and yes I am still smoking.

I am not sick to my tummy but I don't want to eat anything, no appitite but usually I don't eat supper every night anyway. I would love a beer but I know better, couldn't handle it before and probably can't now and besides why tempt fate?

I do have to give honerable to my youngest daughter for today. She really impressed me with her whole being and I am so proud of her. She picked me up on time, was careful driving and stuck with me the whole time. Asked the onco nurse questions, gave her imput, talked me through the whole thing. Told me to sleep if I wanted to and she would just sit and guard me lol but I didn't sleep. Thank you Tami.

I sat next to an old man of 75 and he was so sad looking. Of course I had to talk to him and ask questions ect. By the time he was done with his treatment he was laughing and smiling. He told me about when his hair fell out, he has a goatee and he was drinking coffee one night and as men do he placed his hand on his face over the mouth and rubbed down his goatee and it fell off in his hand, ruined his "GD" coffee lol we laughed about that. His hair grew back and now he is in again because he has inoperable lung cancer, now in both lungs. He said he quit smoking 10 years ago and got cancer 10 yrs later. So he left wished me luck and I wished him luck and told him I will see ya next time! You bet he said. When he stood up I was shocked at his form. He was very tall and thin, while he was sitting he looked average. His behind was showing crack and Tam and I told him to pull up his pants before he got the nurses all excited. LOL was funny, he said oh like that will happen and one of the nurses said Oh my I am getting the vapors! So I hope he had a better day! See you next time he said with a wink.

Monday, April 7, 2008

The Barbie Doll Syndrome "The Chemo Diet" not for everyone and Please Do NOT try this at home!

I almost forgot to share this little glimpse into the dysfunctional type I grow from.

Something my Mother said to me last week "Oh you will loose alot of weight when you get chemo!" how freaking exciting is that??? Well let me first say, yes I am a little overweight, but not disgustingly so. I always was a person who fluctuates from one size to the other. But my Mom bless her has never to the best of my knowledge ever been over 130lbs. and always boasts about her girlish figure even at the young age of 83. I think she is at about 125lbs. right now. She goes on about how she had the Barbie figure her whole life. My Dad on the other hand was a huge man topping the scales over 300lbs. at one time (so I hear). So I guess we kids all got our genes in the body weight dept. from dear ole Daddy.

So now I can look forward to the chemo diet eh? maybe I should market that concept, what a deal ... diet and free hair care! LOL sorry can't help but be a bit of a synic on this subject.

The next thing is that she cut out this article about how starving yourself before chemo could be beneficial. Now to be fair I must tell you this study was done on rats not humans. So am I now considered a rat??? LOL there I go again. I know she is grasping at straws, trying to help but come the hell on! I know she loves me endlessly but that isn't really helping me at this moment trying to understand the logic. Here is the article below if your interested in such.

We are all afraid of this 125lb ball of fire we call "Mom" but we few would never admit it. She is a force all her own, very strong woman, a man hater (but omg not a lesbian - banish that thought!) She has battled colon cancer without chemo and so far has won, she has battled half her nose falling off due to skin cancer and won! She is an amazing woman, a true warrior, well loved, somewhat respected. Somewhat because of her views on things that sort of rub people the wrong way, misunderstood? I doubt that but hey who am I to say? Did I tell you that at 83 she can put down as many beers as you can? Watches NASCAR thankyou Tony Stewart!

How does the word DYSFUNCTION fit into your world?

The Rat Pack Article

Author is Denise Gellene from the LA Times

Starving mice for a few days before chemo protected their healthy cells from damaging side effects, offering a possible way to shield cancer patients fro the debilitating hair loss, nausea and anemia that now plague the treatments, researchers reported this week.
The study, published Tuesday in Proceedings fo the National Academy of Sciences, could also allow the use of more potent chemo doses without endangering patients.
Valter Longo, of USC who led the research, said healthy cells deprived of noruishment stop dividing and become more resistant to stress. That makes them less vulnerable to chemo, which targets cells that are dividing.
Because cancer cells do not respond to their environment in a normal way, starvation does not protect them from the drugs, said Longo, who conducted the research with scientist at USC and Giannina Gaslini Institute in Genoa, Italy.
The experiment looked at how healty and cancerous cells reacted when they were exposed to toxins after being denied glucose, a simple sugar. Yeast cells, for example were 1,00 times more resitstant to damage from chemo than yeast cells containing a tumor gene.
An experiemnt in mice confirmed the protective effects of fasting. Of the 28 mice that received only water for 48 to 60 hours before chemo one died. By contrast, 20 of the 37 mice that did not fast died from treatment. All mice were given an amount of the cancer drug etoposide equivalent to three times the maximum human dose. Fasting mice that survied treatment had no visible side effects, researchers said, compared witht he second group of mice, which became sluggish and devloped ruffled hair because of the drug.

Well there you have it. Of mice and men.

The New Do

OMG Look at me now! This is my new do, happy about it or not it is here for now. I was advised by many to cut off my locks before chemo, and so I did. It really don't matter much since it will all be gone in a few weeks. Check out the lipstick! LOL I never wear lipstick especially bright colored ones! Just had to do it.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Its Been A Long Time Baby

I know I have not been on for a while, and for good reason. I had another operation called and auxillary node disection. It sucks big time I will not lie but and there is a but, it helps with the diagnosis process. This is where they take out some more lymph nodes, ya know the ones they left there before? This time it has caused a bit of a problem, but nothing I can't live with *wink-wink. Consider the alternative. So I am numb most of the time and feel like my right side of of chest and underarm is in a tight sleeve or lets say tournique. Ok so now I have this forever weird feeling but it's ok! The good news is that there were no more infected lymph nodes, so now on with the plan. Plan, did I say plan? Thoes that know me I am one of the worst planners, I rather do things on the spur of the moment but that is why I have doctors so they can plan.

The next thing I had was a port installed in my arm on the other side. Oh joy of joys I have this ugly and I mean ugly big bump on my arm. My whole arm turned black and blue and purple and red blah blah blah. The pain was untoleralble for quite a while and I made a new friend whose name is Percoset. Well that was a short lived friendship because I really don't like the way my new friend treated me although he did help me sleep at night. I do not do well with medications that alter my brainwaves to the point of the duh huhs. So anyway I managed to get an infection in the whole arm, up my neck ect. Antibiodicts were next. So where did the good doctor send me? The emergency room. BIG MISTAKE! After 11 hours of sitting around with alot of sick people they sent me home...

Got the flu, oh no! what the heck did I do? Karma for me is not good these days and I keep wondering what the hell did I do to get this? Well nothing really but allow me some dramatics for goodness sake! So finally after missing the Relay for Life I am starting to get over it but still have a horrible cough. Did I mention all through this I have been trying to quit smoking, house train a puppy, and gear myself up for what comes next? LOL life is weird! Needless to say, I am still smoking, the puppy is somewhat trained and I am scared to death.

Chemo comes next Thursday. This is where they inject you with poision. My hair will fall out, and a host of other things could happen. Grose! I know how vain I am about my hair. Shameless as it is, I am. All my life I didn't hear, how pretty I was, no no but I did alway hear how pretty my hair was. Now I won't even have that. Do I care? you bet I do but hell that is a small price to pay to see my Grancchildren yet to be born, and the ones that are here to be loved by me. No one can love them more than I can. So to deal with this I am trying to talk myself into getting it cut this weekend. I will donate my long braids to locks of love, just like last year but can I keep going on the extent of hair that will come off? If I thought I could drink and party I would but not this time, well maybe a beer or two won't hurt.

All in all not sure when I will be back, not sure anyone reads this crap but I write and read and laugh at myself after. Self amusement, almost sounds dirty! LOL

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Met my Chemo doc yesterday, he gave me alot to think about. It is very scarry all of this. I will be on chemo after my next surgery he said for 6 months. That seems like a very long time. That also means that I won't be going to NY in June as planned. Huge disapointment. He said I would definately loose my hair and eyebrows. Uggg! I am so vain and never knew it lol. I asked about my eyelashes and he said no he didn't think so, so we will see I hope he wasn't lying about that. Oh well come what may.

My surgery that was suppose to happen this Friday has been postponed a few days. March 5th is the day now. My lymphnodes are comming out. This scares me more than having the tumor removed because there is a threat of lymphedema and nerve damage. Not to mention it will most likely hurt like a m**f*er (bad language I know BUT...)

Gosh I think I am a bit negative today, I try not to be but somedays it just is. When you have cancer it is almost like your emotions have no control of their own, and some monster takes over and runs you around like a swirling wind in a tunnel.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

How much more?

Ok well this is getting old and I am a very impatient person. I want this behind me, forgotten and dismissed.

Bad news on the report from the surgery, have to have more surgery. They saved the boobie for which I am eternally grateful, but now they want the rest of my lymp nodes. It appears to have spread a bit.

So much to think of, more surgery, chemo shortly thereafter and then radiation. I think by then I will be like an atomic bomb lol. So much for travelling out of the country!

I am increasingly tired. I don't care much for this stint in life. I try to keep up with the world, sometimes I surpassed it this is cramping my style. I guess I am angry!

Thought for the day : wondering if they will leagalize pot for me in the near future lol think I will take that to congress along with socialized health care!

Ahhh truly rantings of a mad woman!

Sunday, February 3, 2008

One Giant Leap and Surgery in the Fast Lane!

Whew! That was quick, surgery is over and I am on my way to recovery. Talk about drive thru surgery I think my case tops it. I got to the hospital at 10:15am, rushed right into surgery, 2.5hr later in recovery, and home around 5pm. I still couldn't walk when they wheeled me to my car to go home, I don't really remember going home except my hubby carrying me in the house. I presume that is what they do with you when you have no insurance.

Anyway a partial masectomy (lumpectomy) and a snb where they took 6 lymphnodes. I am very pleased with that, my poor little part is just a bit defalted not as bad as I was expecting. just a bit achey. LOL happy days. My underarm well that is a different story. That hurts quite a bit, alot of tingling, stinging pain going on. I could take my oxycottin that was given to me but I can't stand how I feel on it, so I am taking plain ole tylenol and learning to be a bit tougher. Haven't been able to eat much mostly due to the oxy.

I am anxious to get back to my art and computer. I haven't been spending much time on either and oh boy I want to get in my car and drive! Can't do that yet either.

In a few days, I go to the onc doc and will most likely hear the plan that is laid out in front of me. I am not excited about that yet. I would love to hear ok your done, go home, cancer free and live the rest of your life. Holding on to that for a few days. The day after I go get my stitches out, tape off or whatever back to the surgon, and she will probably be done with me. Yippie!

Well ta ta for now.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Two Wolves


One evening an old Cherokee Chief told his Grandson
about a battle that goes on inside people. He said,
"My son, the battle is between two wolves inside us all.

One is Evil.
It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity,
guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.

The other is Good.
It is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence,
empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith."

The grandson thought about if for a minute and then asked his grandfather,
"Which wolf wins??

The old Cherokee simply replied,

"The one you feed".

There is a lesson to be learned here, let us not learn it the hard way.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Tick Tock Tic Tock and Breast Cancer is NOT Contagious!

Waiting for important things in your life are like looking at a 1500 mile stretch of road ahead. Of course things that seem important sometime are not at all but at the time you are thinking of them they are.

Tomorrow I go for pre admit, and on to the Oncologist. I am getting cold feet about the whole damm thing. I don't want the shot for my SNB, I don't want surgery, I DON'T want to do the rads and chemmo, BUT if I want to live this is my chance to prove it. How fair is that?

Yes I am definately feeling sorry for myself. lol tell me you wouldn't.

The other thing that is prying on my mind is that what happens to your friends when the shit hits the fan? I am here to tell ya that what I have is NOT CONTAGIOUS! All but one friend has fallen off the face of the earth. What the hell is that all about?

If I was a whinner I could understand, I simply said I have breast cancer and poof! Bitter yes indeed I am, seems to me I held their hands plently of times even held their hair when they were sick for a few. I don't want anything but how about a I'm sorry, lets go shopping, or lets make some art, or how about lunch or even just watch a great movie and eat ice cream?

Now that that is off my chest, (no pun intended) I can forgive, for they know not what they do to me, but God bless them, I may never understand it.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Decision Day

Decided to go with the current surgeon, soooooooooooooo my first appointment with the Radiation Oncologist is next Wednesday, then on the 29th to get the injection of interferon for my sentinel node biopsy, and surgery to have the lumpectomy and node discection on the 30th.

Funny that my biggest worry is about the lymphnode stuff. I worry that it will damage my nerves and hinder my love of drawing and painting. You wouldn't believe what goes on in my head about this, worried that I will end up painting like Picasso is a frightening though. I know he was famous but not until he was dead! I have not got that scheduled into my planner! I am known for detail in my work, that is what I have always done best. Besides since I do not own a portable DVD player I plan on drawing in my art journal while undergoing the long hours of chemo. So yes I am worried.

The breast that will have the lumpectomy, and possible mastectomy can be rebuilt. Ha ha thats a good one I know it can but tell me, when I am old will I have one droopy and one stand upright? That makes a very funny picture in my mind. Sorry again for my sic sense of humor. It is all my mother's plastic surgeon fault (he rebuilt her nose out of her ear)! In his office he had a comic of two old people. The woman had beautiful breast all perky, the dream of a lifetime and the man well you know he was taking viagara BUT the rest of their bodies were all shrivled up like prunes. Well it was funny.

Love n' light

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

The Results are In

Yeah it sure sucks to be me right now, but I mean that in the nicest way. Isn't that what we are taught, to be nice at all costs? Even to ourselves.

Well here is the black and white of it. My core biopsy results show -Invasive ductal carcinoma, grade III/III. What does that mean? Simply put, as it was put to me is that I have 1. an invasive meaning it plans on screwing me by infiltrating wherever it can 2. That it is indeed cancer (no duh) 3. grade III (3) means it is the most aggressive. I will spare the GROSS details, because it is well uhhh GROSS!

The surgeon was a lot better today with me than she has been. Told me what she plans. A lumpectomy (good news) at least I get to keep my precious body part, and then she let the shoe drop on the lymp node thingy. She wants to take my nodes, and I want her to be conservative on that because I have no desire to go around with balloon arms. I asked how many, she said she didn't know. I asked how? and she said they inject blue intrferon dye and where the dye goes so does the node. Sounds like a soap, well never mind my sic humor again. I ended up telling her I would get back to her. She was like what do you mean get back to me? I simply have to think about this, get it through my head and then I can do it. I am in no big rush, I think a few days really won't matter at this point. I will decide between now and Friday, if she will be doing it or another doctor and what his opinion is.

I can also expect chemo and radiation oh joy just what I want a bunch of poison to kill the poisonous monster within. Gadzeeks I am dramatic! Hey maybe I will get a hat that says Chemo Girl! or RadWoman.

Well enough of this I have things to do! Got to make something, call a few people, and plan tomorrow with my youngest daughter and her lovely little angels.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

The Start of the Unwanted Journey

On December the 5th, 2007 I started on this journey but it will NOT own me! However I feel the need to express the churning's and emotions that are contained inside me, otherwise I may blow up like the little girl that ate the blueberry candy on Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory and bust. Your welcome to read and I will understand if you don't wish to read the rantings of a mad woman.

I knew I had a lump, it had been there since June. when one morning I woke up and my itty bitty had an ugly bruise on it. The bruise lasted about 2 weeks, that is where the lump was. Funny thing I didn't remember getting roughed up anytime in the night, my hubby is way past that stage. I didn't remember getting drunk, and falling, or walking into anything, getting in a ruff and tumble with my grand kids, none of that. So I had an unexplained boo boo. After the bruise went away so did any more thoughts about it or the lumpy.

July there was no change. I didn't do the monthly breast exams so why would there be a change to compare with? August, September, same story. October I started not feeling too hot, but attributed it to lack of exercise, poor eating habits, not working ect. I told my husband hey maybe you should get me on your insurance pretty soon. Since I am never sick enough to warrant a Doctor visit, he didn't see the need. November, I was so busy doing all the great stuff for the holiday preparations, excited because my Grands were getting just the right age, that I can tell them stories of Santa. I was also going hot and heavy in my favorite art groups, making all kinds of stuff.

Then BOOM, one day in the shower I felt a rather large lump in my right breast. I wasn't looking for it, still not doing breast self exams. Please ladies do these exams, I cannot stress that enough! So having no insurance and slightly freaking out, I call around to find a clinic or doctor to do a free mammogram. No such luck, I did however find one that would give me one with payment options.

Dec 5, 2007 first appointment and many $$$'s later the good doctor is grim. You need a diagnostic mammogram, and x-ray. Down the hall.

the waiting begins...

Dec 18, 2007 Diagnostic Mammogram, ouch Don't they know it hurts to pull on those puppies? let alone squish them! Uh Oh lady you need to go to the Ultrasound room, the radiologist is waiting (in my head is piling up more $$$'s) OK so we do the ultrasound. Radiologist skirts around it but eventually says you have breast cancer. My question of the day is how does he know, answer? they know what they are looking at BIRADS V. I fall apart, I cry for about 5 minutes. IT WILL NOT OWN ME!

I cry alot lately off and on, try to stay tough repeating that little phrase "it will not own me" I will give it 5 minutes a week and that's all. Sounds great in theory.

Dec 21, 2007 Back to the doctor for confirmation. Confirmed. Now if this day isn't bad enough because of what happened last year! Seems like every Christmas has it's horror story. Last year my brother ended his own life, it absolutely devastated myself and my sister. The year before that my mom had colon cancer diagnosed just before Christmas (she is good now). The good doctor refers me to a surgeon.

Jan 3, 2008 Happy New Year you have to have a Core Biopsy ASAP! Why do you think surgeons are so dang cold. I think because they have to deal with all the blood and guts of an illness, they shut themselves down to emotion. I don't like my surgeon much, I picked her because she is a woman, she is a woman of color, had 32 years of experience. I figured she had to work harder than anyone else to get where she is. Why don't I like her? She is rough, manhandled my boobies like she is on a mission to kill! I will go for the biopsy, and then back to her to hear my options but I may ask for a second opinion. I know I am dragging my feet.

The waiting is impossible!

Jan 10, 2008 I go for the biopsy. I was so frightened beyond belief. I know my blood pressure was sky high, I was shaking and sweating. I am needle phobic. I curse under my breath, don't want to offend the dude with the needle!

True Confession - It wasn't all that bad. Yes it stung a little, and the sounds freaked me out, the position of my arms were uncomfortable, although the nurse did everything she could to make me comfortable. I didn't whine, like I thought I would, in fact I said nothing unless I was asked.

What they do is numb your boobie with something like what the dentist use, lidocaine, or some kind of caine. They also turn you away so it is impossible for you to watch. The make a tiny cut, insert a hollow tube needle into the tumor. I had this done 9 times. It depends how big the tumor is they have to have several samples. The purpose of this test is to type and stage your cancer. Then they insert a little tiny titanium chip called a tumor marker so they can identify the spot in the future. Tape you up with suture tape and send for another mamo to check the chip. Yeah all done! I was given a bag of peas for an ice pack. Here I was expecting a lolly pop and got a bag of peas! I had more fun than I should of with the peas, I told my hubby on the way out the door that he could expect peas for supper! I thought he would toss it right there.

The boobie is still sore, and black and blue all over. It hurts a little but I know what I can and cannot do. It is temporarily and some day I will wish that was all I had to worry about. Now the game is on, my next appointment is Jan 15th.

The waiting sucks.

This graphic is from Thank You Kay