Saturday, November 6, 2010

Second Day After Chemo

Tom went into work today so that he could make up the time that he missed while taking me to get Chemo on Thursday.  Bless his heart.  I hate that he is having to work odd hours for me.

I figured that since he is having to work, (besides the fact that I needed to move my car since it hadn't been driven in a month) that I would tackle our shopping today by myself.

The first thing I realized is that I hadn't put any gasoline in my car since I was diagnosed with cancer in July.  Yeah, that's right...JULY.  Needless to say, my little car turned its "I NEED GAS" light on first thing.

I pulled into the gas station and couldn't remember how to get my gas cap open.  I knew there was a button to push or pull somewhere on my car but for the life of me, I couldn't find it.  Now in defense of my chemo brain....I had just bought the car in May and haven't really driven it since July.  So, I pulled out the owner's manual and went in search of the release for the gas cap.  I finally found it and got the tank filled up.  (It was in a really strange Solara had it on the floor of the car and all I had to do was pull it up...this one was a button nearly hidden to the left of the steering wheel...way low where you had to bend down to see it...ridiculous!)  I was really missing my Tom during that mess.

Then I finally got to move on to Wal-Mart.  Now...Tom is usually my brain anchor while I'm on this Chemo.  I don't even think he realizes it.  If I'm feeling disoriented because I can't remember something, I'll prod him to help me remember.  Today, I was walking around trying to remember where I was headed most of the time that I was in the store.  I had a list but there were a couple of things I thought of (when I walked in) that I wanted to look at that weren't on the list.  I never did get those done.  (Whatever they  I mean you have to imagine the Attention Deficit Disorder that comes from Chemo Brain.  You're walking in the door and you see the sign "Pharmacy" which is near the beauty stuff.  So you think, oh...I need a new lipstick because mine is almost empty and then you look to your right and you see housewares and you think of something else that you might look at really quick and then you are trying to remember what your original idea was (which was the lipstick) but for the life of you, that brain cell is hiding somewhere and it is never to be found again.  This goes on the entire time I'm in the store.  All I can say is that I DID get everything that was on the list.  HA!!  Lists are my friends.  8-)

Also...I had this buggy that was just driving me over the edge.  It was like it either had a flat (spin, thump, spin, thump, spin thump) or something was stuck on one of the wheels.  I drove that thing all over the store and when I got to the food section, where I was looking for this particular type of jello that I like, and had run the gambit of the aisles looking for it (to no avail), that I decided that I needed to make one more sweep of the aisles but NOT WITH THAT BUGGY.  I proceeded to the front of the store and tested a new buggy and transferred my goods to it and then went happily on my way to find the rest of the stuff I needed in the grocery department.  Funny how much easier it was to think without that 'spin, thump, spin, thump, spin, thump' following me around.  I even remembered that I needed socks and ran over to the women's department and found some.

When I left to come home, I turned on my GPS because I knew that I'd never find my way out of the parking lot without it.  I finally made my way to Hwy 72 and headed home.  This great sense of relief and accomplishment hit all at once.  The simple things that I took for granted in the past have become huge and monumental accomplishments.  I can't wait until I start taking it all for granted again.  8-)  But for now, it is a good day to be me AND to be alive.  8-)  In spite of all the confusion and frustration, I enjoyed taking a little time to myself outside of the house.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Stubborn Cat

Yeah...another cat story.  

So, we got chill mats for our computers to cool off the CPUs.  I wanted it because Shadow likes to block the outlet to the fan on the bottom of the computer because she likes to get the heat from it.  She is absolutely the most stubborn cat I have ever seen.  Here is her solution to my putting the computer up higher on top of the chill mat.

So...I push her off and she sneaks back up to this position.

The day after my taxotere chemo treatment is going well.  I have the usual flushed cheeks from the allergic reaction to the chemo and I'm still bouncing around on steroids so today is a pretty good day.  Work has been hectic today and I've got to go back and get busy but I just wanted to touch base with everyone and say that I'm doing OK today. 

Hope everyone out there in the real world is having a great day!  8-)

Thursday, November 4, 2010

In The Chair Again

I got Kendra as my nurse again for my chemo today...YEAH!! I am in chair number six. That is a higher number chair than last time for whatever that is worth.  It just makes me feel 'more special' if I have a number closer to number 1...HA.  This is my last taxotere treatment. It took FOREVER to see the doctor this morning. He saw eight patients before he even got to me. My appointment was for eight forty and I didn't see him until nine fifty.

This really nice lady named Lauren was helping with the food cart today. (They bring snacks and drinks around to us if we want them during chemo.) She had really short hair and she shared with me that she had just completed her chemo treatments for breast cancer.  She really gave me hope when I looked at her and all that hair she had on her head.  I have the nightmares of never being able to grow hair again after this is over.  It's silly, I know but I really don't have a lot of control over my dreams at  I guess they often express some of our deepest fears and fantasies that go on in our subconscious.  (Yeah, I'm not going down the fantasy road in this blog world.  You're welcome...LOL)

I told the doctor about my double vision and he has ordered an MRI for next week. I hate that I am claustrophobic and will need medicine for them to stick me in that machine so Tom will have to drive me. This means more time away from work for him.  If I could do it without him, I certainly would.

I know exactly what to expect now for the next three weeks, and it's funny, but it doesn't make it any easier.  I really think it should but it doesn't.  In fact, I am just about a basket case because I do know what to expect. I just keep my mantra going..."God is in Control...God Loves me...God is in Control...God Loves me."

I have my first AC chemo treatment the day before Thanksgiving. My husband says we will celebrate Thanksgiving after this is all over in February. I am good with that. I guess we may as well wait until then for Christmas and the New Year too. HA!!

I am back home now.  All went well at the Cancer Center.  Taxotere is now complete except for the crying...HA!  That means that in 11 weeks, I should be complete with all the chemo and then in thirteen weeks I will start healing from it all.  I am REALLY looking forward to the healing process.  8-)

I got home and there were all these TO-DOs in my mailbox from work.  I wrote my boss and told him I would get right on it and he said, "Don't tax yourself, now."  All I could think was, "Then quit giving me all this work if you don't want me to tax myself."  Wow...amazing.  He knows I am compelled do work if it is passed down to me.  WHATEVER.

Tom took me, sat with me through the treatment and took me home afterword.  He is such a sweetie to give up his personal time like this for me.  I told him that I thought I could drive myself to these for the Taxotere but he really seems to want to be there for me. 

It isn't a bad day today except for the stress of it all.  Thanks everyone for all the love and prayers.  It means more to me than you can ever imagine.  8-)

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Remembrances of People I Love

I have a card (that a pastor from our old church in Navarre gave me) stuck to the door on the hutch to my desk.  (It actually is in a sleeve that you can stick to things.  The glue is pretty much worn out on the back of the sleeve, but I have it wedged in between the glass and wood of the hutch door.)  Of course, it is a bible verse (what else would Pastor Moritz have given me?).  It says, "Trust in Him at all times, ye people; pour out your heart before Him.  God is a refuge for us."  It comes from Psalm 62:8.  Under it it says "A reminder from Bob and Shirley Moritz".  It's been up there for probably 7 years.  When I am feeling tossed about and out of control, I find myself reading that and getting comfort. 

We never know how the things that we give to others might help them from one time to the  next.  I am not usually a keeper of 'things' but every once in a while I get a nugget like that one that feeds my soul and lifts my spirit. 

I also have a picture of my son, from when he was about 12, wedged into the other door to the hutch.  He has the largest, sweetest eyes and a precious grin on his face.  I love to look at that picture and remember when he was smaller and needed me in the way that only children need their moms.  He never went through the terrible teens.  He was always a quiet child as though he was thinking about things before he would ever speak.  Don't get me wrong...he wasn't perfect and he is making some of the usual mistakes in adulthood that I made but that's ok.  He has to learn from his own mistakes.  I know that I certainly learned from mine.  8-)

He wanted to come home and take care of me when I was first diagnosed but I had to explain to him that this was going to go on for months...there was no way he could come and stay that long.  I thought it was really sweet that he wanted to though.  He sends me a text message about every other day asking how I am.  He has a good heart. 

We had a psychologist tell us once that a child's brain isn't fully developed until it is 25.  I believe that to be true.  We have seen a great increase in maturity in our son this year.  He just turned 25 in August.

I have other things that I enjoy that people have given me as well.  Mom mom gives me the most unique gifts.  My house is filled with them but one in particular that I see everyday is a little turtle that states on the underside of its shell that it is from the Loose Neck Collection.  Here is a picture of it since there is no way I can explain it very clearly.  When you touch it's head, it wobbles around.  Very cute and colorful (like my Mom).

My sister gave me a gift of two girl statues (many years ago) and when you put them together, they are holding hands.  A representation of she and I.  (See Carol, I got the  She is the one whose hands are on the outside because she had to always be in charge.  8-)  I guess older sisters are just like that.  I look at these figurines and think of her often.

My son, mom, and sister are living in different states so I don't see them often and I like to have these little reminders of them sitting around where I can reflect on the way our lives have been woven together and apart over the years.  They are all little reminders that I am loved.  8-)

I have many gifts from my husband but the best one is his heart.  He continues to give daily with that gift.  I am truly thankful for all our years together.  There is no one in the world that I would rather have by my side with all the struggles that we are currently facing.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Starbuck's Habit

I told Tom not to get me Starbuck's Coffee this morning.  I've been getting Starbuck's every morning (during the work week) for over three years now.  It is a comfort food because it is flavorful and creamy and just plain old yummy.  I don't really need it though.  I have found in my life that I get into habits (some good and some bad) and I can always break them and move on.  Sometimes it is painful and sometimes it is just a redirecting of my thought processes.

Of course, he sends me an email saying how strange it was for him not to get me Starbuck's this morning.  (He's been doing that while I am going through Chemo treatments and working from home.)  He's not worried about me not having it so much as he is scared for the cat, he states, "If I find a cat, torn to shreds, with fur all over the house, I will know that I should have gotten you Starbucks this morning."  Funny guy.  I will have everyone know that the cat is currently sitting in front of the office window enjoying watching the birds.  I haven't laid a hand on her.  

Of course, the day is early yet...(Muwah hah hah)

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Another Fine Day

Today was another fine day.  We watched Everybody Loves Raymond while we ate lunch and we got the curtains hung (finally).  They make the room much more cozy.  Below is a picture of the finished product. 

You can also see in this picture that I haven't killed Dub's funeral plant yet.  See...miracles do happen.  HA!

I really enjoyed the grocery store this afternoon.  I got to pick out fruits that I wanted.  I am very much a whimsical fruit shopper.  It is hard for me to say, "Pick me up 4 pears" if I don't know if their pears look good for that particular day.  Buying peaches is all about smell to me.  If they don't smell like peaches, I don't want them.  Apples, anyone can buy.  You just make sure they aren't beat up but I'm not so crazy about apples.  Grapes are easy so I've had a lot of grapes lately.  We got some Talapia to cook for tonight as well as all the other food we would need for the next few days. 

I've been having some double vision I need to ask the doctor about.  It comes and goes and just started last night.  This is the first time this has happened and I'm not really sure it is the chemo since it should be all out of my system by now.  I've had a lot of headaches and now this double vision...kinda weird.  I am beginning to feel like a hypochondriac with all these  I'm just 'journaling' it in this blog so that I remember when it happened.

Not much else going on here today.  Hope everyone is having a great day!