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Sue's Sewing and Happenings
Monday, June 27, 2005
Assemble the troops
Mood:  rushed
Topic: June 2005
This week... I need to gather up all my reports, films, slides, tests, etc. to take to the City of Hope where I'm waiting for a call back re appt date. So, I'm hoping that a few phone calls will do the trick. With a few stops at the docs' offices and hospital.

Posted by sue at 10:38 AM PDT
Updated: Monday, July 25, 2005 3:15 PM PDT
Sunday, June 26, 2005
Writer's Block
Mood:  bright
Topic: June 2005
Um, can't think of anything to say. But ...that's a good thing. Things are good. Some of the topics I've tossed around in my head this morning include: family - what a great support group I've got; friends - wow, near and far, some I've actually met, others are my cyber sewing friends, they are all wonderful; ignorance - those that don't understand cancer or disease and think that somehow the afflicted person brought it on to themself; Advil, works great for muscle soreness; car accidents - that's what this is like, a wreck that I am watching from the curb, and someday it will all be over, I'll do a general assessment of my body and car, find out I'm ok, and say phew; sewing [must always include that] - I have about 3 things to cut out today and start working on, which one first?; co-workers - we should all be so lucky as me to work in such a great place; and/or Double Indemnity - watched that movie the other day - another great old movie!
It's Sunday, the sun is out, I think I'm gonna go float in my sister's pool!

Posted by sue at 8:51 AM PDT
Updated: Monday, July 25, 2005 3:25 PM PDT
Friday, June 24, 2005
Hair Today... Gone Tomorrow ....
Mood:  mischievious
Topic: June 2005
Wow, I slept good last nite, even after watching "Night of the Living Dead". That 1968 movie where the carnivorous dead zombies come back to life due to radiation exposure or leak or something. "Pits the living against the dead in a struggle for survival". Ah, those old movies, aren't they great!

So, I'm cancelling my appts with Dr. Fallout and have a new appt with a new oncologist on July 7th. This guy was recommended by my endocrinologist who I really like. So, for now, I'm on vacation from docs until the 7th.

Hair... this is what I've been thinking. It's most likely it will fall out, fall out, fall out, so may as well have fun, fun, fun, before the ... fall out. Tonite I get my nails done (well, put back on, I'm an avid nailbiter, always been, always will be, so stop nagging me!). My manicurist, who I also really like, is also my hair stylist. So, for the next month or so, until the fall out, fall out, fall out, I'm going to experiment with different haircuts. I'm thinking I may first go for a longish bob, shoulder length, then take it from there. I will try to take photos and post them, so you can follow along. If you have any suggestions, pass them along. Maybe I should experiment with color too, what the heck, it will just fall out!

Posted by sue at 9:13 AM PDT
Updated: Monday, July 25, 2005 3:14 PM PDT
Thursday, June 23, 2005
What's Wrong ....
Mood:  irritated
Topic: June 2005
"What's wrong... what part of this bothers you the most"... that is what DH asked as we left the oncologist's office yesterday. What bothers me the most ... well, the whole thing, all this crap. The fact that I have to spend my summer in a faux leather, overstuffed recliner with an IV in my vein getting pumped with chemicals I can't even pronounce that will make me sick, achy, bald, with several other cancer patients in various stages of their treatement - the befores, durings, and afters. What's wrong.....
I have reservations for Yosemite and now all I will get is virtual yosemite
. Oh, the nurse pointed out the nice large picture window in the "treatment" room. Oh, nice, I can look at the 134 and the 2 fwys and if it's not too smoggy a nice view of downtown LA. Not exactly the granite domes and full-from-the-winter's-rains waterfalls I had in mind. After Yosemite I was going to go to Big Basin to meet my sister and her family, a beautiful National Park just east of Santa Cruz, CA. I used to go there as a kid in the late 60's and dream how I'd live there some day as a hippie, without a care in the world. Um, so, what's wrong, Oh, nothing and everything.

Men have this natural instinct to fix a problem to slay the dragon, the kill the beast, and make it go away. Well, this isn't going to go away, at least not this summer. Thanks for asking and trying to help, but just be supportive, and don't take it personal if I'm in a bad mood or want to be alone. I'm just trying to wrap my brain around all this... and be nice at the same time.

Oh, yes, the oncologist's office, and yesterday's visit/consult. Your typical doc, sitting, taking notes, looking rushed. Asking me the usual questions: take any medications; any illnesses; breast cancer in your family; prior surgeries, blah, blah, blah. He asks, writes, and I answer. Then it babbles off the reasons I should have chemo. The technical side I don't understand, it's like an alphabet soup of formulas and reasons, but it seems to boil down to my age and that I am not menopausal, so I still got hormones. Oh, whatever.

He says chemo would be once every three weeks. Ok, that's better then the 3x a week for 3 weeks. He says it will be ATC treatments or something like that and to me it sounded like something I took to the hazardous waste facility last weekend when the oil was changed in my car.
He also asks how much research I've done. Well, not a lot. I prefer the denial way to life. Too much information; some of it useless - is it really necessary. Well, yes, according to him, I should have been doing my homework and researching all this crap so that I would be able to ask intelligent questions. I have no questions, oh, yes, I do have one: will my hair fall out? He bluntly says "in 3 weeks; it will just fall out; all of a sudden; gone; the roots will just die". So, now echoing in my head is "fall out, fall out, fall out, all of a sudden, roots die, fall out, fall out". Yes I knew my hair would probably fall out, but couldn't he have prefaced it with something, like "well, unfortunately; in some cases" or something not so harsh! [echo: fall out, fall out, fall out] It's my hair for pete's sake, I have spent thousands of dollars on special conditioners, brushes, shampoos, clips, babying my beautiful long hair not to have it fall out!
Then he asks which "formula" I would like, 18 or 16 weeks. I respond with, I'm still on the hair thing, can I get back to you later. Well, now it seems he's getting a little irritated with me. At first I haven't done my homework, so I don't have any intelligent questions, and then I'm being vain and worrying about my hair [yea, his hair is thinning and I bet he uses plain wrap shampoo, so what does he know anyway!]. He says, ok, why don't I come back next week and before my next visit, I should write down my questions. He said that twice, "write down my questions". I still don't have any questions becuase I don't know what to ask! Maybe I should write down: "can I bring a friend", "is alcohol allowed", or "since I'll be sitting in that chair for 2+ hours, can you bring in a manicurist?"

So, I went home, fired up the computer, and googled chemo. More good news: weight gain, eyebrows fall out, eyelashes fallout, muscle aches, bone loss (already got that from my previous thyroid cancer and THAT medication), irritated tear ducts, nausea, vomiting, fatique, mouth sores, taste changes, memory loss [who am I], neuropathy [oh great, so my fingers will go numb and I won't be able to sew?]. Ok, now I'm feeling better? So, then I read about wigs, false eyelashes, how to camoflauge green skin. This isn't helping, I close the computer and decide no more questions, maybe a different doc.

Well, needless to say, that's what's wrong... not the summer I had planned, but that's life, things happen.

Posted by sue at 9:57 AM PDT
Updated: Monday, July 25, 2005 3:05 PM PDT
Wednesday, June 22, 2005
What if ......
Mood:  lazy
Topic: June 2005
I'm tired today. I had one of those restless nites of "what if". You know where your brain works overtime with all those ridiculous "what if" scenarios that you can't block out because it's nite, and that's when everything is magnified. When I finally woke up this morning, it was like thank goodness! I can't really remember what the what if's were, but I'm sure it had to do with the possibility of being bald, sick, and, OMG, not being able to sew! I'm sure glad the Tonite Show repeats at 3AM!

Today I go for a consult with an oncologist, so I'll get the real scoop, I suppose.

Oh, I had my final stitches removed yesterday, and said goodbye to the surgeon. Guess I'm done with that doc, now on to an medical oncologist and a radiation oncologist. I think I need to get a "date book" or something.

Posted by sue at 9:46 AM PDT
Updated: Monday, July 25, 2005 3:14 PM PDT

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