Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Tuesday, September 25, 2012


So my husband and I were sitting in Ruby's waiting for our lunch to come before my chemo today, and of course we, like a good married couple, are reading our phones and conversing sporadically. I checked facebook and saw this.....

and then I burst into tears while waiting for my salad... and my husband goes what?? what's wrong??? and takes my phone and reads it and says, in typical man style, "oh cool, they went ziplining!"  That's really all I can say about that, because there aren't many words.

Here are some pictures from the Komen walk on Sunday...again, don't really have words for this whole group of people who showed up... for me? It all still sort of boggles my mind.

My husband and son, walking for mama...

Thank you again to everyone who came out... thank you to those who keep me in their thoughts from afar, thank you for every good wish and prayer that is sent out. Thank you isn't enough, but it's all I can offer right now.


Appointments, appointments, appointments...

Days right now are full of appointments. In between now twice-weekly non-stress tests for the baby are my regular OB, oncology, and perinatology appointments, soon to be surgical consult appointment, last AC chemo today. Hopefully for a long time, like maybe forever would be nice. Then we start counting down to the big stuff, and more appointments! Ultrasound to measure how much the tumors have shrunk, since there is no baseline mammogram in my case. Full body CT scan after delivery, which is a scary thought to me - my oncologist is optimistic, but truthfully it terrifies the hell out of me. Oh my, quite the busy holiday season, and not in the way I like. But all I can hope and believe in is that at this time next year, I'll be planning a one year old's birthday party, decorating for halloween, going to the pumpkin patch and Disneyland, and looking forward to my favorite time of the year, without the worries and prospects I have to face right now. So much to talk about over the next few weeks, I just need to process a bit of it first.

Went to the Komen walk on Sunday....holy hell, was it hot and humid. One of my husband's co-workers organized a whole group, and it truly amazed me just how many people showed up for me, people I've known for 12 years now and people I don't even know! Thank you so much Karen! (pictures to follow soon)

Friday, September 21, 2012

A small bit....

After getting jabbed in one arm and then having my other forearm dug into (who takes blood from the forearm??) this morning - blood tests every Friday are getting really old - I got a bit of good news. I haven't really heard "good news" in front of my name for quite a while, well, other then that the tumors are shrinking. But I received my BRCA results this morning and they are negative! Which sort of confounded the geneticist, to the point that she's even asking the lab (there is one lab in the US that does the genetic tests for BRCA) to see if I need one more specialized test that they are able to do. She was surprised because of my age, and the fact that my mother and grandmother have both had breast cancer, along with a maternal great-aunt... however all of those were post-menopausal, non-agressive and frankly nothing like mine. I had a feeling all along it was not genetic, just crappy crappy luck. What this means is that now I 1) am not passing on a mutation to my unborn daughter - she will obviously be at greater risk because of me but the risk is reduced in comparison to if I was positive 2) I will likely only be having a single mastectomy now and 3) I don't have to have my ovaries removed, at least not anytime soon. So, hopefully this is the beginning of a roll for the "I have good news for you" appointments.

Since I'm in CA I thought I'd post a pic of the Endeavour fly-by for anyone who hasn't seen the million other much better pictures on the news or whatever. This was from my front yard.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Buckling my seat belt....

Well, after surviving the 100 degree weekend... things are going to be moving quickly soon... baby will be here on Oct. 16th, and I will be awaiting a call from the surgeon to schedule surgery soon after delivery, probably about 2 weeks later. This all seemed far away when this whole thing started and now I'm actually having to face it down. I hate to say, but this chemo has really been no big deal... now the "big deal" stuff starts. Which means I'm actually having to start realizing what I'm in for and the feelings that go along with that. More on that later.

 I'd like to really thank Jill at for giving a shout out, and Danielle and Bettina at for setting up the donation fund.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Stand Up to Cancer???

I just had to get this out while the hot computer is open and I remembered...I watched the Stand up to Cancer benefit that was on every channel Friday, well, you know, because I'm part of the "club" now...I have to say, I was not impressed. Let me tell you why. For someone who doesn't have cancer, sure, all of those percentages and statistics scrolling across the bottom of the screen I guess are informative and make you want to donate -whatever. For someone who HAS cancer....what a load of bullshit. Statistics and percentages and everything else, when you are fighting this, are nothing but things to dissuade you. I refuse to look at any sort of percentage of outcome or recurrance or statistic, all that does is create noise and doubt. I have my own outcome, I had to make my own statistics since I was disagnosed, and I think every cancer patient should... no one should listen to what it typical or normal or whatever, because you are fighting your own fight, and you are creating your own belief system and you are your own person, totally different from anyone else who has fought even the same type. No doctor has the answer to what's going to happen... I've read about Stage 4 people cured of many different types and I've read about Stage 1 people having recurrances and passing. There's no way to tell, and looking at numbers just takes a little bit of power away from you. That's my opinion and outlook, and the whole thing seemed rather dour to me. I did not approve.

The summer of the devil

Seriously, I am trying really hard to keep up my good spirits, especially knowing what I'm facing in the near future, but really, this heat is just sapping every little bit of energy that I have, which is not much at the moment. Some days it's like an unimaginable task to even respond to a text or email, so please don't get offended. It truly has been the summer of the devil - I don't remember an extended period of heat like this in the 9 years we've been in this house. I pray, beg and plead for the signs of fall that everyone else is talking about to show up here, and then I look at my phone for the next few days and all I see is high 80's and 90's. Please, may mother nature show some mercy and have this break soon. Okay, my bitch fest is over... for now.

This was a very tired weekend. Between this baby, who I am carrying much lower than my son, and the interminable summer, I could barely get off of the couch. I don't like feeling like this at all, so I try to get up and at least vacuum and do dishes and stuff just to get my blood moving, but dear Lord. My poor husband is going to need a well-deserved extended vacation to himself after this is all over.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Holy shamoley...

Well, looks like little bug may be coming earlier than we thought...eta is now about October 15. She is measuring two weeks ahead of schedule and already weighs 4 pounds so no one is too worried about her size. Which means surgery will be moved up also, etc etc. Oh my. Looks like 6 weeks to go. Holy crap, we've got stuff to do.

My two babies sleeping together, soon to be actually touching!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

One more thing...

Soooo to add insult to injury I was diagnosed with gd today. I knew I would be after I failed my first glucose test....I have had no previous bs problems and none with jack's pregnancy, however one fun side effect of chemo and steroids is that it raises blood sugar, so there is really nothing I can do about it. But now in addition to getting my arms pricked for the next seven weeks, now my fingers get poked too. Faboo. Thank god I only have 7 more weeks til delivery because between all this crap and the HEARTBURN FROM THE DEVIL I think I would have to crawl in a hole if I had much further to go. Plus chemo is doing nothing on slowing this kid down or her growth so I am not worried at all about her. One day at a time, I will make it through this. Honestly, it's the pregnancy giving me way more pain and discomfort than the cancer or chemo at this point.               

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

You've gotta represent...yourself!

The one thing I know about the medical community, when you are in it or caring for someone in in, is that you have to advocate for yourself or the other person if they are not capable. And it can encompass everything, from watching and asking what medications they are giving you and why, to why certain treatments vs. others, to even watching the saline drip and making sure it's right. It's unfortunate because when you are in the hospital or dealing with doctors and nurses, it's not normally when you are feeling your best and everything is going right and your stress is minimal - quite the opposite. But it is still imperative that you do it.

So I go to chemo today and wait for the nurse to try to find one of my poor, disgruntled, hiding veins. She's all, okay, show me your access, so I show her my arms. She's all, ohhhh, no, the Dr came in the other day and said anyone getting adriamyacin has to have a PICC line or a port. Well, I have neither. Too late for a port while I'm sitting there and I have refused a Picc line for a number of reasons. I will tough out the sticks until I deliver and then will get a port. So I heard her talk to one of the other nurses who said something about me "just being against it" (ummm, yep. No PICC line with a 2 year old, plus I have seen and taken care of other people's PICC lines and seen too many infections, they just get dirty, plus I could have clotting issues due to being pregnant - so NO PICC LINE!) insuating I was just being difficult. So she was all flustered. She brought over the charge nurse, who knows my whole story, and she was like, okay, let's look at your arms, I'll take this one, no problem about the Picc line, I totally understand, got a good vein, annnnd done. So, there you go. You really have to learn to assert yourself at all times, for everything. And chemo went completely fine, not even the slightest skin reaction this time, in and out, great.

Monday, September 3, 2012


Changes, changes all the time. I'm not a big fan of change, never have been, so I guess that's something else I have to learn to live with in all of this. Our kitties had to move out this weekend. Now we would never get rid of any of our animals under any other circumstance, but one of our cats has a tendency to get a little over-stimulated and would scratch me sometimes, and I absolutely cannot get scratched by poopy cat claws right about now... so a college friend that I haven't seen in over 7 years heard about Chloe and drove out from Arizona to pick her up! Amazing. My mom is taking the other kitty, he needs a kitty friend and was originally hers anyway so he'll be fine. We would never have just taken them to the shelter or anything, we would always have found them a home no matter how long it took, but we are so grateful for this help. Every part of life seems to have to adjust to this crap, and it's unfortunate, but unavoidable.

Cleared for chemo #3 tomorrow... yay! (I asked the I the only one who gets excited for chemo? She's like, 'you should be, you're killing bad things!' which is exactly why I get excited) Let's go kill some more evil cells!