The Night I Almost Met Lynda Carter....

If you know me at all, you know that Lynda Carter is a favorite celebrity of mine.  In 1975, when I was 10 years old, Wonder Woman came on the air.  Back in that time, there was no Netflix, no on-demand, no Tivo, no VCRs.  If we wanted to watch something, we made sure we were home at the time it came on, or we waited until summer reruns, and try to catch it then.  I made sure I was in front of the TV each week when it came on.  Little did I know I would be watching this all these years later.

You might remember one of my blog posts, It Takes a Village.  In it, I mention how watching Wonder Woman helped me through the hard days of chemo, and surgery recovery.  I finally found a quote that really sums it up:

"People always ask me why I love Wonder Woman....   It's because she reminds me tobe strong whenI don't want to be."
I don't know who to attribute the quote to, but it really is fitting.  To help me remember, I have some Wonder Woman themed things -- sunglasses, …

It's the end of March! No posts since January! Where have I been?!

I've been here.   Tired, but here.  In January, I was pulled from my regular duties at work to help out elsewhere, which took away all of my downtime.  No time some days to even turn the computer on.    Nice change of pace, but exhausting.  Today should have been the last day for that, we'll see tomorrow.

I have a facebook page connected to this blog, where I post shorter items, doctor visit check-ins and updates, medical test results, things like that.  I try to add some levity with posting comical items, too.  So, if you read this blog, you also want to like that facebook page.  Here's the link:  Living With Stage IV Breast Cancer facebook page.

So, where have I been?  Other than working with no downtime, I spent an unexpected week or so off of work in February being a co-caregiver (along with my husband) to our 19 year old son, who had an emergency appendectomy.  He ended up spending a week in the hospital, and then was sent home with ten days worth of three different I…

In Your Face, Cancer!

Last week while at a medical appointment, I was knitting with some very bright pink yarn.  The person I was with knows how I feel about "pretty pink ribbons" and how I feel that the awareness campaign needs to shift to a research campaign.  So, as I'm knitting with this obnoxiously pink yarn, she remarks on how bright it is.  Yep, it sure is bright.  Paraphrasing here, she said, "No, it's really bright.  It's not frilly light frou frou pink.  It's 'In your face, Cancer!' pink.  It's 'Take that, Cancer!' pink.  It's a good pink for you."

So, when I was having a pedicure on Saturday, I was originally going to go with a shade of blue.  Did I?  Nope.  When I related the above story to my wonderful nail stylist, and told her I wanted to find the most obnoxious pink they had, we found this:

If you want a great place for spa services, I highly recommend Nails & Faces of Joy Spa

My First 911 Call

I say my first 911 call because I know there will be more.  I have a terminal illness.  I watched my father live with cancer.  I watched my sister live with cancer.  I watched my mother deal with being paralyzed on her right side as the result of a stroke.  Sadly, I did not pay enough attention to how they lived with it.  I really wish I had been more attentive, and a better caregiver; a much better member of their respective villages.

Here's what happened last Monday.  Because of my treatment the previous Saturday, I knew what was coming.  You learn to predict when the side effects will hit.  I took some Imodium as a preventative.  Choked on the damned pill.  Have you ever seen one?  They're really small.  Leave it to me....  You would think that I could just cough it up, right?  Nope, that sucker was stuck.  So, I called (as well as I was able with a very quiet, raspy voice) to my boys, who were (thank God) home.  David heard me and came running.  He got Jimmy.  While Jimmy …

Cancer -- The Gift That Keeps on Giving

There is a misconception that with cancer, it's diagnosis-chemo/radiation/surgery--done/cured.  Not so.  I don't know when we as a society started to substitute the word remission with cured.  Did they find a cure for cancer and I never heard about it?  I didn't realize this had happened until I was diagnosed.  The nurse practitioner said, "I'm so sorry; it's Stage IV, there is no cure."  I thought, "Duh, it's cancer, everyone knows there's no cure" and in my state of shock thought her wording was odd, but thought nothing of it.  I've come to find out that in general, people think that once treatment is over, cancer has magically disappeared.  I was diagnosed Stage IV/metastatic/terminal from the get-go.  I don't hear the term terminal very much, though.  I think that it's all part of the desensitizing/sanitizing of humanity.  As an aside, I have a blog post in the works entitled "When I Die", and one of the things …

Little Pink Houses of Hope Retreat

I've posted a photo album on my personal facebook page with all of the photos from the trip.  Here's the link if you'd like to see them:  photos

Little Pink Houses of Hope is a wonderful organization.  They provide week long retreats to breast cancer patients and their families.  From their website:  "Every beach retreat is designed to help families relax, reconnect and rejuvenate during the cancer journey."  We finally had a week when we could "get away from it all", and at the same time connect with other patients and families.  I was so excited when I got the word that our application had been approved!  Our retreat was held at Ocean Lakes Campground in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

The process is not a short one.  I applied in December, and found out at the end of July that my application had been approved for the Myrtle Beach trip in October.   There is a committee that looks over all of the applications, and there is criteria that must be met.  Thi…

Treadmill Catch-22

Reason 1 to get on the treadmill:  Every time I see my cardiologist, she tells me she wants me to do some cardio, not just walking slowly and steadily, but interval -- alternating walking and running.  I can do that.  I've done that before.  I'm familiar with the Couch25K app.  Many times have I started ... and many times have I stopped, and gone back to old habits.  Now, my motivation here is to keep my heart healthy.  Believe it or not, my heart is healthy.  I have echocardiograms every three months that say so.  I have echocardiograms every three months because one of the maintenance medications I'm on is known to cause heart problems.  I'll be on this medication for the rest of my life, or until it stops working.  So, keeping my heart healthy is a priority.

Reason 2 to get on the treadmill:  Those 20 odd pounds I lost during my summer of chemo have been sneaking back up on me.  I had gone down a size (had to buy all new clothes; yet another unexpected expense of ca…