Hello Again!


8BC72028-7862-4928-B28D-7ECB92870985No, NOT bad news, dear readers! But rather, good news and, well, NEWS.

At yesterday’s  visit with my dear Dr. Hellerstedt, she upgraded me to annual-only visits!!! She DID say, “Again” but oh well!

She also gave two thumbs up to a procedure I have scheduled next month.  The scar tissue on my right, cancer, side – is badly adhesed to my ribs with no intervening tissue. This restricts my range of motion and causes a significant amount of “discomfort”.  I’ve been been referred to various doctors and now have a surgical plan.

What I will be having done is essentially reconstruction with scar release and autologous  fat grafting (and yes, I DO have cleverly camouflaged fat!). This will lay in a padding of fat between the released scar and my ribs, hopefully preventing further adhesion.

My (new) plastic surgeon pointed to my tummy and informed me “Now,  you should be aware that this won’t be available for any future reconstruction you might want to have.”

Plastic  surgeons – what a crack-up!

“Good!” I said, trying not to roll my eyes. Many if you don’t know about the fantastic chest tattoo I had put on December 2016!

Like I’d mess THAT up!

Have wonderful holidays, everyone! Surgery day will be January 14, 2019.

#27 – Burned

Last night, trying without much success to fall asleep, I felt for the first time really Burned. Like, sunburn burned.

Believe me, that was a familiar feeling. Some of you who were also kids in the 50’s and 60’s will remember the homemade “suntan lotion” of baby oil and iodine? That was more my dad’s poison than mine, but my friends used to compete as to who could peel bigger strips of skin off my back.

I know, disgusting, ain’t it? Well, I’ve had the skin cancers to pay penance for it 😉

Well, I got up, smeared some (more) Aquaphor on myself and took some Ibuprofen. After tomorrow I can use Silvadene.

Get to healin’.

#26 – Quiet

“You’re quiet today,” Jason remarked after they had set me up. 

Normally I chatter away, I guess. I hadn’t really thought about it. 

Now I’m just looking forward to Thursday’s last round. Will they do the weekly X-ray’s tomorrow? Will I see the doctor, and when again – and after that, who will follow up about my skin? 

Sigh. Two more rounds. I’m so tired of all this.

Plus I still can’t taste anything. That takes most of the fun out of celebrating 😉

We’re almost done, folks. Hang in there!

#25 – the Downhill Run

In the spirit of the Olympics…this is the last week of my cancer treatment.

Did you get that?

Not just the last week of rads, but the last week of this  8 month course of treatment that began last June. After four surgeries,  four rounds of chemotherapy and now only 3 more of 4 treatments left for this week.

Then recovery. Healing. Rebuilding strength and stamina.

I can’t help but think, though, that it’s never really over. Cancer comes back, or if not cancer then something else. Aging is all about gradually (or not so gradually   😦  breaking down. Dust to dust. Somewhere along the line one must learn to absorb the illness, treatment and recovery into the stream of one’s life.

Is it even possible?  Do we even have a choice? I was and am still aggravated by the feeling of having had to “put things on hold” these past 8 months.  I hope and pray I have learned from it, and grown thru it.

“Be merciful to me, O God, be merciful,

for I have taken refuge in you;

in the shadow of your wings will I take refuge

until this time of trouble has gone by.”

Ps 57:1

#24 – 6/7’s done

And I’m pretty sure I have the flu. I dunno. But I called the doc and they switched my atb to Augmentin. I’m coughing and hacking and blowing. 

Happy Valentines’s Day, anybody?   : )

They said I could still have my rads, so the DH drove me. I didn’t see Terri but there was some passed-out woman on a stretcher. She looked pretty much the same when I came out as when I had gone in. 

God bless her.

I’m staying in for the weekend, I do believe. 

Good night everyone. Only 4 more rounds.

#23 – Dontcha just Hate

having to spend a sick day being sick?

I did go down to rads, and saw Dr. Wu. She’s just recovering from stomach flu, so it was hard to tell which of us most wanted to avoid the other ; )

She approved the Ceftin, said my scabby area is looking “great” (I wonder about her sometimes)  and was overall encouraging. Only 5 more treatments, and the weekend off after tomorrow.

Jury still out on whether or not I’ll go to work tomorrow. I’ve spent the day coughing and blowing my nose, so I bet they’d prefer I stay away : )

(I can heroically sacrifice myself by staying home again)

Time for green NyQuil and night-night.

#22 – Systems Down

No, not the linear accelorater. Mine.

WBC 2.7. Temps up over 100. Snorking and coughing. Scabby (but not weepy) radiation site on my incision line. Doctor out sick or running 2 hours behind.

Thank God for NP Lisa. And Ceftin.

No work today for me : (

#21 – and even the doctor is out sick…


Even Dr. Wu is out sick for the second day In a row. The E-C Jen eyeballed my skin icky and said I’d be sure to see a doctor tomorrow (A sure bet since I have a Dr. Hellerstedt visit in the afternoon 😉  Jen didn’t think it looked much worse, but the new wound care nurse at work, who very kindly was willing to check it out, was talking antibiotics.

We will see. Thank the good Lord I am not allergic to any of those. And hey, it could be worse -I could be in Sochi right now and dousing myself with Evian water for showers…

Actually,  I think allergies have gotten me (’bout time, eh, one wonders how I’ve avoided it thus far!) My Dymista seems to be taking care of the problem, at least for the moment. Felt pretty punk a bit earlier.

Fortunately, I’ve been blessed with a husband who can make spaghetti and a daughter who can whip up a mean hamburger helper stroganoff. Those and easy peasy steamed veggies and I’m good to go : ) Olympics and the newest ripple blankie project, “Swiftly Tilting Planet” for bedtime and I’m off…

Good night and a peaceful rest…

#20 – A Sick Day

Ugh – got the cruds today. I woke up tired, reset the alarm after hitting the snooze and finally dragged myself out of bed. I just felt like I was moving in slow motion, then there was the cough. And the sneezes. I started calculating what all I HAD to get done at work today. 

Figured I could get the necessities done in an hour or so  after rads, and drove down south  after 10. Missed the worst of the rush hour then, too. 

The Ever-Cheerful Jennifer agreed that the scabby area along my incision Does Not Look Good. She wants the doc to see it tomorrow (she was out today). I pray there might be something to make it feel better, and not break down further or get infected, and that I don’t have to delay treatments. 

I’m missing the wound care nurse at work, who went on to Greener Pastures : (

I want to go to bed, but don’t want to miss the rest of tonite’s Olympics.

What a rough life….

# 19 – In, Out and Home

The mist started freezing on my windshield as I drove to rads this morning from the nursing home. Terri wasn’t there – she lives south, so was probably safer staying off the roads. What that meant, though, was that I was in and done in less than 15 minutes!  A hot mocha in hand, I tootled up South First to Lamar and home. 

Definitely did not go back to work for one more hour, not with conditions going sour. I had taken care to tie up loose ends  before I left – I hope so, anyway! 

After some lunch, I planted myself on the couch with the re-covered iPad (thanks again, God) and spent a couple of hours reading past blog entries of Attic 24 – a wonderful young Brit who crochets the most beautiful things (it’s from one of her tutorials that I am learning the Ripple).  

A very lazy day, well-enjoyed by yours truly, who is feeling some fatigue after this 4th week of radiation.  

We watched the beautiful opening ceremonies to the Sochi Olympics, but I admit I will NOT be up at 0300 to watch the events begin ; )

Good night, all. 9 more rounds to go – 2/3 rds done.

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