A couple of weeks ago I had an MRI on my upper back to see if my arthritis has gotten worse. My anesthesiologist wanted me to have one done prior to giving me my next epidural. Since it wasn’t my oncologist ordering the test I had to have it done at the regular hospital instead of the Cancer Center where I’m used to going. So different techs, different radiologists reading the scans. The anesthesiologist seemed satisfied and gave me my last epidural without any problems.
Last week, however, I went to my oncologist for my annual blood work and checkup. He looked at the results of the MRI and told me they reported a spot on my right lung. He’s not sure if this is a spot that has been there, as a result of my prior surgery and it’s just being seen by new eyes, or it’s something new and we need to be concerned again.
So, the hamster is back on the wheel. The “what ifs” are flying around my tiny cranial cavity.
OK. we have a CT scan scheduled for when I return from vacation and the oncologist a week later for the results. So for two weeks this is going to prey on my mind.
Light a candle for me.
The winner is the Alitma!! Apparently my puny little cancer cells didn’t measure up to the big gun medicine so he backed off the dosage of Altima by 25% and we’ll see how I do on that. I can already tell that this is coursing through my body at light speed. Little pearl of poison infiltrating my cell structure to wreak havoc over the mutant cancer invaders. Maybe my life is one big video game. I keep getting restarts on the cancer thing till I get it right and move to the next level. What fun that will bring.
Did have something interesting happen today at the oncologists office. A little background here, as little as possible. In 2006 when I was first diagnosed with cancer everyone rallied to my support, with the outstanding exception of the two people I directly reported to and the one person I worked with. Now for four years I spent 10 hours a day with these people, the one that I worked with I thought was one of my greatest friends. We shared everything. Anyway, as soon as I was diagnosed, I ceased to exist for those three people, most notably the one I thought was my friend. Calls were not returned. Lunch meetings with other friends she always had an excuse not to attend. I’ve seen her twice, both accidental meetings, since I left work. Guess who I ran into today.
Sure enough, walked into the doctor’s office today and there she stood. Big as life and she remembers me. I don’t look anything like I did then so I don’t know how, but she did. She put the big show biz grin on her face as she squealed out my name and made to hug me. I looked her in the eye, exchanged a quick “hi, howareya”, and continued on talking to the nurse. I knew who she was, she hasn’t changed a bit. I know I should have been more civil, but I couldn’t find it in my heart to be. She dropped me like a hot rock without a word or reason. She hurt more than my feelings during those months.
Anyway, I think I handled it well, like a lady and an adult. I wanted to scream and cry and ask her why, but I maintained control. I hope I can handle the rest of this chemo with that much control.
Good night all. Sleep well.
There is an official end to the tunnel, even though it’s still two more weeks plus, at least it’s a tiny light. I’m hopeful that I’m done with the chemo also. This last session tore me up.
I now fully understand why prisoners were tortured with a strict diet of bread and water. It causes a binding effect that is most painful to experience. And given the fact that they ate mostly whole grain breads I imagine that would have been worse. Anyway, the chemo caused some major binding and intestinal swelling. Now I have to be careful what I eat for a few days so that I don’t overdo and tear anything. My insides ache like I went seven with Sonny.
There is something so basic in being reduced to not being able to eat, drink, sleep, vomit or have a bm for four or five days. By the middle of the third night I was in agony and nothing worked. Luckily things are moving along swimmingly now. Lesson learned: double up on the Senakot the day before and the day of chemo just to smooth things out.
They want to double my radiation tomorrow. 45 minutes in that cage. I think I’ll ask Tio to drive me, that way I can relax and medicate as needed. My last double day. My skin on my neck looks like a Savannah Monitors right now. Crispy and fried and kinda gnarly, like you used to see on the old women who spent a lot of time by the pool. Old leather comes to mind.
I am so thankful for my friends and family that have helped me through this.
Don’t you love it when you go to the doctors or the hospital and they ask you to “rate your pain”. What is this a freaking game show. If I pick the right number between 1 and 10 to I win the magic injection that will dull the pain.
Help me figure out this pain scale thing. So if a 1 is a stubbed toe or hang nail then a 10 must be an axe to the head or cut off my leg with a chainsaw.
But is it consitancy of pain or level that generates that scale. A hang nail can bother you for a long time. You tend to bump it constantly, and a stubbed toe can throb for hours. While an axe or chainsaw wound while most assuredly hurt like the world ending, such would result in almost instant unconsciousness either natural or chemical. So which is a greater pain?
And when they ask you to rate emotional pain on the same scale? How do you rate emotions on a scale of 1-10. People ask me how I’m feeling and I don’t know how to answer them. Do I give them honesty (which I’ve discovered makes most people run and hide) or give the polite I’m OK and move on? What do people want to hear? Are they asking about my physical or mental health? I’ve pondered this endlessly. And just because you ask, don’t think you’re gonna get the true story. Trust me, sick people can tell if you’re genuinely asking or just doing the mandatory “howareya”.
Guess my heart just hurts today for all the coulda, shoulda, woulda’s that run everyone’s world. I love where I am, I just wish I had made a few different stops along the way.
Off to wallow in my wounded emotional quagmire.
Give a smile to someone today, you won’t need it anymore and they will remember it all day.
I’m home. Sweeter words have never been spoken. It’s nice to be surrounded by all that is familiar and loved. I woke up this morning with Mo curled up in the crook of my neck and Oscar stretched out along my side with his head on my shoulder. I adore my guys, they are so “brothers from another mother”. Oh, and on the wild and bazaar side, one of my friends e-mailed me to let me know that she had adopted a shelter dog (I’m so proud). Imagine my surprise when she sent me a picture of Mo. When I asked her she said that this little girl just called out to their hearts. Now she has never seen or met Mo. Her dog is Chi/Pom just like Mo. Same markings, colors, eyes, age, underbite…. How strangely odd are we. She and I have thought alike for 15 years. It just shows to go ya.
I hear mom walking around upstairs. She’s such an intense little lady. I love having her here with us. She reminds me of the blue faerie from Cinderella. Always flitting from hither to yon and making much ado about nothing.
I did have a minor meltdown at the hospital yesterday. I’m not proud of it, but it happened and I’ll own it. I basically threw a good old three-year-olds temper tantrum. The Doctors aid came in at around 9:30 am to check up on me. Was I eating? drinking? going potty adequately? When I answered yes to all of the above he told me that there was no reason to keep me, and I should be released by noon. Yippee!! Noon is a workable goal. If you tell me noon, then I look forward to noon. Now, 10 rolls around, no doctor. 11, 12, no doctor. No-one to sign me out. So by 12:30 my anxiety and my absolute need to get as far away from hospital smells as humanly possible took over and I had a brain fart. I wanted someone there NOW and I wasn’t taking no for an answer. I wasn’t waiting another minute, I was dressed and by 1:30 I was walking out the door come hell or high water. Even whipped out the ADA card (against doctors advisement) for checking myself out. Joe even went so far as to contact a patient advocate to try to get me out. I don’t do stress well, and I do confinement against my wishes even less well. So, by 1:30 I was on my way home. When I get on my soapbox, things move.
Off to nap. I hope everyone had an amazing day full of wonders and laughter.
If there is a level of fear below scared shitless, I’m there.
Apparently when the surgeon found a “really promising” gland and cut into my neck, there was a tumor attached to the gland. Really not a good sign for someone with a cancer history. She was able to remove it and send it in for tests, but I have to wait till Wednesday for results. Then on Thursday I see the oncologist to find out what kind, what stage, where it’s at…. So, pins and needles till then.
The good news is that I’m sporting another rockin’ star on my neck that is about an inch long. Right in front, above the collarbone. I get to scare little children for another year till it starts to fade. Yeah, yeah, quit bitching about a little scar, others have it worse than you. I allow myself to vent once, play the pity party for 10 minutes then I pull up my big girl pants and get on with it.
Joe did agree to let me go ahead and get another tatoo. I just need to find a local artist who does amazing dragons. I have always had an affinity with dragons, and have felt many times to be protected by them. I have had the same dragon in every car I’ve owned. He’s been with me for 30 years and he watches out for me. So, I’m getting a dragon on my left front thigh. I have a tremendous urge to get it done quickly. I’ve been dreaming of a dragon for the past several nights, so I know what I want it to look like. Lots of reds and yellows and orange, really scaly and fierce. Lots of fire and teeth. I need a fighter.
OK, I’m off to bed. I think I’ll take a pain med and zone. Night all.
Spent an amazing Saturday playing with my four favorite people. My SS, DIL and the grandbabies. Every moment I get to spend with them is a treasure. The fact that they are 1.5 hours away is a hinderence, but We gotta do what we gotta do. Just hung out, chatted, had lunch. It was a really nice couple of hours. The best part was the fit my granddaughter threw when we left. It does your heart good when they really don’t want you to leave.
Sunday, Other SS came by and help do something I’ve wanted to do for months. He finally showed me how to turn off that silly touchpad on my laptop. My biggest frustration is typing away and suddenly, everything is gone, highlighted and deleted. Now it’s fixed and I can type without worry.
Today was another day of trying to figure out if my tenants had moved out yet. Finally got her to e-mail me back to let me know that she had moved out. At first she told me that she had to “finish cleaning” today. Ummm, that’s what you had all weekend for. I finally got her to commit that they were “out”. What a mess they left. Bags of garbage and bags of bottles and cans. They didn’t even bother to clean out the fridge. What pigs.