Friday, November 19, 2010

All About Time we are...ready to shop for Christmas presents again.  It's almost Christmas Time.

This year has absolutely FLOWN by. 

I can remember being a child and wishing my life away.  I wanted to be 13 so I would be a 'teenager'.  I wanted to be 18 so I could move out and live on my own.  (I was an idiot...why would I want to give up lack of responsibility and free room and board?)  I wanted to be 21 so I would be considered a 'legal' adult.  Time passes so SLOWLY when you are young.  I thought those 'milestones' would never arrive.

Next thing I know, I'm wanting to put the brakes on and slow time down.  I didn't want to turn THIRTY.  That was almost dead in my head.  I literally went into a deep dark depression for my thirtieth birthday.  My sister sent me black balloons for that birthday...(Nice, Carol).  I imagined all my cells were dying and I had one foot in the grave.  (Still an idiot)

Then I had my son.  I wanted to see him walk, talk, start school, grow up.  (Again with the rushing time thing...still an idiot.) 

Now, I just want it to slow down.  I want time to really get to know my family and let them get to know me.  I want to understand how my son's head works and get to know him better than I do right now.  I don't want work to be the focus of my life.  (In fact, if I could afford to retire this next year in June, I would do so but I have bigger plans for our retirement so I will keep working for about 3-4 more years, which, according to our accountant, should leave us sitting comfortably.)

One thing I have learned is that, during our retirement years, we are going to need to get some hobbies to keep from getting too housebound and driving each other crazy.  (I've learned this to be true during this 'housebound' time.)

Anyway, back to Christmas.  Carol invited me to be part of their group in Giftsters.  Yeah Mom for telling me about it and Yeah Carol for adding me!  I put what I wanted in there.  I want no more chemo and hair...I wonder if anyone can get those for me?  lol  I had a lot of fun looking at what everyone else wanted. 

I guess I'll have to come up with something else so Tom can get me something for Christmas...I just can't think of anything I need or want right now.  I mostly want him to be happy. 

Originally, I planned to go to Carol's this Christmas, before all this cancer stuff hit.  We were saving our vacation so we could go out there for a few days and visit with everyone but we'll have to wait until next year now.  Sigh. fast as time is flying, it will be here before I know it.

Hope everyone is having a great day!  (The picture still has a sunny look today, Sis.)

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Romantic Stories and Not So Romantic Stories...

Sleepless in Seattle...absolutely my favorite romantic movie...

It's been a really busy work day today and in the background I had Sleepless in Seattle running.  I've probably seen it ten times but it always makes me go "Awww..." and grin and cry when Annie and Sam meet at the top of the Eiffel Tower on Valentine's Day.  Yeah, total chick flick. 

I am in the 'good week' after chemo.  Yeah!  I love this week.  All my energy is returning and this weekend I'm going to go Christmas shopping because it will be my last chance for this year.  The chemo is going to be stepped up from every three weeks to every two weeks so there won't really be any good weeks until January. 

The nice thing is...we're in the home stretch now.  4 more chemos, 11 more weeks and I should be back to being as good as I am right now.  (This is allowing for recovery time after the last chemo) 

I think my boss is becoming very impatient for me to get back to the office but the good news is that this is the time of year when we get a couple of days off for Thanksgiving and a few days off for Christmas so there will be less work days.  Before I started all this, he was used to me bouncing in and out of his office with ideas and solutions all day (every day, poor guy) and he doesn't have that right now.  He is also working on a proposal for one of the programs to try to fill my shoes as well as doing the 8 hour schedule training that he made me schedule last year for every couple of months.  (OK, I have to laugh at that one a little bit.  I didn't want to schedule all those in the future and he made me.)  I was just going to schedule them as we needed them but he was all "Put one in every couple of months." and I was thinking, if you give them more classes, they'll just wait until the last one to take it but "WHATEVER" and now here he is having to teach one on 3 December.  OK, I feel kinda bad that he has to teach the class but he could cancel it if he wanted to.

My sister is going to let me be in their 'Gifster' thingy.  That will be a fun distraction to see what everyone wants and if she remembers to give me access before this weekend, maybe I can figure out what Daryl wants before I go shopping.  Hello, Carol?  Don't forget about me.  8-)

Hope everyone is having a great day!  Thanks for all the prayers...they're STILL working.  8-)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Movies and Second Chances

On a more serious note...

I rewatched the movie "Dreamer" with Kurt Russell, Dakota Fanning, and Kris Kristofferson yesterday.  It was a movie about a horse and the ability of a family to beat impossible odds of winning the Breeder's Cup with a horse that had broken its leg.  It was a story of hope and belief in the impossible.  Of course, I cried at the end when the horse won the race and got to thinking about how being diagnosed with cancer used to mean a death sentence.  (Don't ask me how my mind's a scary place in there.)

I am so thankful (grateful...amazed?...put in your own adjective here)  that it is no longer so. 

I am so thankful to live in a time when technology is so advanced that they can find cancer before it moves into other organs. 

I am so thankful to have a God who loves me enough to make sure they find it early and, even though I have to go through the chemo, that I can be a survivor of cancer and may be able to help others.

I am excited about the fact that I have this little experience to pass on to others.  I never really understood before why people would start cancer foundations or why Susan Komen was so interested in turning everything pink and making people aware of breast cancer.  I have this deeper understanding of that now.  It is a drive to make a difference after you've been given the chance to 'survive'.  I also understand why my sister's friend Kathy took the time to talk to me about her experience during my Dad's funeral when she found out I had been diagnosed with breast cancer.  I really appreciated her taking the time to talk to me.  I was hungry for information.   8-)

Uh rereading this, I can see that I've moved into my sappy stage of the chemo...sorry, have to take the bad with the good.  8-)

I also recently rewatched "The Bucket List".  Carol, it isn't so much about cancer and death as it is about friendship and the way that cancer changes people to the inner core of their being.  Other than the fact that I never really cared much for Jack Nicholson, since he's pretty foul in most all of his movies, it is still a good movie.  My favorite line in the movie is when he was on chemo and he had just finished throwing up and he gets up slowly and looks in the mirror and says, "Somewhere, some lucky guy is having a heart attack."  Priceless.  That sums up exactly how you feel as you go through the roughest stages of chemo.

Hope everyone is having a great day!  ( is sunshining here...mentally changing my picture.)

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Rain Rain, Go Away

It's rainy out today. 

It was rainy out yesterday. 

I think winter is trying to creep in. 

Shadow was mad at me because I wouldn't open a window.  She was running around the house yeowling from window to window and literally attacking things.  (She is big enough to create havock when she wants to.)  I've created a monster.  Since I've been home, I open a window for her either in the office or the breakfast nook but I can't today because every window has water splashed on it so it would be raining in.  (I guess the wind is blowing the rain into the windows in different directions.)  I never open the living room windows which lead out to the patio (not really sure why) but I looked at the patio and it was dry for about 6 feet after the window so I finally opened one of those and she currently seems to be content.  (MUST HAVE PEACE)  Yeah, I spoiled my kids this way too.  lol

OK, back to Tom's jury duty.  So, he gets out to the jail and the sheriff leads them all around the facility, sleeping area (apparently it is like a dormatory), chow hall, laundry room, get the idea.  All the time, the sheriff is talking about how they don't have enough high security (single inmate) cells.  They built the jail about 6 years ago and at the time, they didn't need that many (I think Tom said they only have 1 if I remember right) but now I guess we have harder criminals in the area that need to be separated from the not so hard criminals.  (Yeah, that makes me feel safer here..HA)  Anyway, when he got back to the courthouse, the jurors had to fill out some report stating the conditions of the jail facilities.  I think the sheriff was wanting them to go back and push for more single unit cells. 

The nice thing about yesterday is that he got to come home and have lunch with me so that was a nice break to my day.  I actually got to see a human being in the middle of the day and since it is someone I loved, that made it even better.  8-)

After they got back they also had to review 6 cases where the arresting officer brings in his reasons why he thinks the prisoner should be taken to trial and the jury decides whether the case will go to trial or not.  Tom said it was all very interesting and enjoyed the break from the 'normal' workday but wouldn't want to do it for a living.  Oh yeah, and on top of all that, they paid him $11.  10 dollars for jury duty and a dollar for gas.  It absolutely cracked me up.  They said that it has been that same amount for years and years and supposedly have tried to increase the amount paid to the jurors but it has never been approved.  Good thing he gets paid by his company for his jury duty would hate to try to live on $11. 

Hope everyone is having a great day!  Now that there is cat peace in my house, I know I will.  8-)

Monday, November 15, 2010

Eating Out and Jury Duty

Yesterday's post generated some good comments for 'safely' eating out...thanks for those, Carol!  I would never have thought of all that.  (Must have something to do with your job that you know all that  Other than Thai on Friday nights (and an occasional pizza) we don't get any food from anyone else.  I've been way to scared of whoever is fixing them having a cold (or something worse) and spreading the germs to my food.  Then, as you brought up, the plates and utensils could be problematic.  I've been in restaurants so many times and seen dried food on the utensils that I don't even trust their dish washing capabilities.  Even before chemo treatments, I wouldn't eat with those conditions. (Yeah...even pre-cancer, I was a bit OCD.  Whatever...)  I'll have to print out that comment to remember it all.  8-)  Can't you just see me putting it into list format and checking each one off....

Use Clorox wipes.

No real dishes.

No salads.

Grilled meats OK

Baked potatoes OK.

Hot vegetables OK.

No mexican food (Especially refried beans and rice)

NO sushi.

If you must eat asian foods, only hot asian food.

Avoid rice unless they use vinegar in it, or unless it's fresh and hot. (Yeah, this one is too many questions for the waiter...I'll just avoid the rice)

No reheated foods.  (And they are going to tell me they reheated it?)

Don't eat at holes in the wall or mom and pop places. (wow, you just put the small business people in jeopardy)

Be sure and breathe around other people unless they're coughing.  (Ok, I made myself laugh with this one.   Wait...I can't stop laughing now.)

Now, the funny part about yesterday, having said all that, is that we didn't even eat out.  We did get a Sam's, Wal-mart, and a Publix run before I said it was all I could take.  We had a really good time together though and found ourselves laughing about a lot of things which was good medicine for both of us.  We got the most delicious blackberries at Sam's.  They reminded me of the ones we used to pick out at my grandmother's.  They were exactly the right ripeness to just pick up and eat. 

Tom has jury duty today.  He called and told me that he has been selected to be part of the grand jury.  I'm like, "What does that mean?"  He explains that even though he has been selected to be part of the grand jury, they haven't had anything for a grand jury to do except for twice in twenty years.  BUT IT GETS BETTER THAN THIS...they just sent him over to the JAILS (yup, I said jails) to inspect them and make sure they are acceptable for prisoners.  I thought, "Hmmm...does he just tell them that he wouldn't stay there if it were up to him?"  What does 'inspect' really mean?  White glove inspection?  Food inspection?  Make sure the toilets flush?  I can't wait to find out.  Well, I guess we really are in Alabama.  8-)  Where else would a juror do a jail inspection?

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Angel and a Devil on my Shoulders

Today is a kind of an emotional 'down' day so I told Tom that we should actually get out today even though I am in 'Nadir'.  I probably won't have much energy but I need to get out and do something productive.

Then, in my usual fashion, I changed my mind. 

Then, in my usual fashion, I changed my mind back to going out.

Somehow, we (Tom and I) were discussing this changing of the mind that I go through all the time and I said, "Oh, poor you, I just torment you all the time, don't I?"

He replies with, "You don't torment me ALL the time."

Yeah...we got a good laugh out of that one.

Of course he followed up with, "I would be tormented if I were alone."  (Yeah, I can hear you all going 'awwww' out there.)  Of course, I said, "awwww...."

When I know I am supposed to be good and say home because I could so easily catch every little germ that is flying around out there...I usually stay home but I'M TIRED OF STAYING HOME.  I feel like being a 'bad' girl and just throwing myself out there in the mix.  I know some might say "Trust God, he'll protect you."   But then there is a part of me that says, "God gave me the wisdom to stay home so why don't I do that?"  Hence all the vacillating that goes on in my head about leaving the house when I'm in Nadir.  Of course, every other bad thing I've done in my life began with this same type of vacillation.  You know the old story of the demon on one shoulder and the angel on the other.  I definitely have one of each and they loooove to talk.

There are two things I know for sure: I know my husband needs to get out of here with me and I know that I need to get out so that I don't sit around in the doldrums.

Hope everyone out there is having as good a day as I'm going to have...'cause I'm heading out.  8-)  That little devil on my shoulder just won the toss.