Thursday, December 5, 2013

True words from a beautiful woman

I concur with Marilyn except for not trusting anyone...  The shuggy, family and select few people are completely trustworthy in my crazy book ;)



Tuesday, December 3, 2013

The Golden Ticket

I wrote this months ago - so I altered the dates originally written to fit with the current...I kinda got sick of this sitting around in my drafts.   :)

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I feel like I am incredibly lucky for sitting on this ticking time bomb on my back for over a year and it didn’t spread.  Yes, I needed surgery, but it didn’t infiltrate lymph nodes and as far as I know it hasn’t made its way to organs.  Most aren’t this lucky.  Most that had the same mitotic rate would typically have lymph nodes testing positive and thus needing further surgeries/scans done.  I got a golden ticket.


I feel like I am spitting in the face of my new found luck.  I’m ripping up my golden ticket and throwing it in the air like pretty, golden confetti.  My diet sucks, I have little to no self control when hamburgers or candy are involved, I don’t exercise, I do drink – really the only thing that I have changed is putting sunblock on the rest of my exposed body because I was already diligent with putting it on my face every day. It's almost 10 months since I had the surgery and that flew by like Super Man looking for a porta-potty. 

In a way, this general dismay about myself is a good thing.  I’ve always said that it takes baby-steps and this is just a little wiggle wobble in the right direction.  I know that I will snap out of this haze and as lame as this sounds...start treating my body like the temple it should be.  Wow, that just felt SUPER cheesy typing that, but I (we) do need to look at it that way.  My body jumped in and fought for me....my body fought for us.  I should be rewarding it, right?

I need to stop feeding my body with chemicals and realize the ultimate prize - my health, my life, my future.  I really enjoy cooking and like to make homemade meals as often as possible, but good lord is it cheaper to pick up a couple of tacos from jack in the crack than to make a delicious and nutritious meal.  I need to deal with my stress as opposed to fighting it and tucking it away like it's not there.  I need to not love western bacon f*cking cheeseburgers!  Even writing 'western bacon' gets my brain going...they're delicious....mmmmmm. Seriously...they're ah-maze-ING....to me!! Where's the nearest Carl's??       O-kay, bye!!  


Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Time of death

O-kay, I'm aware that the title of this posting is dark, but I wanted to share something worth while.

The hubs and I stumbled on a show one night while staying in a hotel in San Antonio (I will write about our trip soon, pinky swear). Our hotel rooms didn't have our lovely DirecTV that we're accustomed to, so we were blissfully unaware of what channels and shows we were flipping through.  We smartened up on the last hotel stay of our trip and made a list of the channels, which we should have done every dang night.  Oh well, hindsight is 20/20, right?

Anywho, this show seemed to be a documentary of terminal individuals and the main focus being of the family matriarch, Maria.  Maria had stage IV Breast Cancer and every episode there were other people willing to share their last moments with the world.  Most participants had some sort of cancer though there was one episode with Cheyenne who had ALS (Lou Gehrig's disease).  I couldn't stop watching.  I was fascinated with how these incredible people and their loved ones are dealing with the reality of their death.  I have never seen another show like this and I think it's............amazing.  Absolutely amazing.  I swear that my heart grew watching them.    

I'm aware that it's a little on the morbid side - who am I kidding, it's completely morbid.  But it's a subject that is never truly, really touched upon.  Movies, TV shows, video games, music and even commercials have death involved - but it's suspended reality.  Oh, don't worry! It's not real, it's just a movie.  What happens when "it" becomes your reality?  You've been suspended for so long that you can't possibly comprehend what to do because death is not in your glossary.   No one ever talks about death even though our departure is something that is absolutely, 1,000% certain for every single one of us (vampires excluded).
 
Time of Death is a 6-part documentary series on Showtime - click on this: (time of death) and it will take you to Showtime's website. If you have 'on demand' capabilities then I recommend that you watch it from the very first episode, it'll make more sense and you'll get a fuller understanding of the main family involved. This show induces thought, as well as tears, so get ready to cry on a couple of them.  It makes you wonder how prepared you and your family for THE uncertainty but it also lets you know that death isn't a tall, scary man in a black robe wielding a giant hay-blade. This show is about family....LOVE....and yes, death.  

Soooo....now that this posting can't get any creepier - I'd like you to check out this show.  I think it's well made, honest and promotes love.  Showtime - Fridays @ 9.  Check it out before it's too late :)

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Daydream, here we come!

In the last day I've come to the conclusion that daydreams can come true.  I wrote a post about daydreams one day after the hubs and I had dinner with our aunt.  My daydream has been primarily focused on the lottery, then secondly going on the most epic road trip with the hubs driving clear across the country and back....straight up taking a couple of months to do said epic trip.  I've included the link in here as shown as the funny looking "daydreams" above.

Did I ever imagine that the daydreams would come true?  I hoped.  I like to think that I am just a teeny-tiny bit psychic, but I don't know the future by any means.  At least the daydreams got my mind reeling and rolling of the possibility.  I think that daydreams, imagining and wishes - anything that gets your mind active and off of your current reality, even just for a bit, can do your soul wonders.  It's the complacently that puts us in a rut.  You're fine with your surroundings; you don't yearn for depth, then you find yourself in the blues and grays of your once colorful life.  Not that blues and grays are a bad thing, but what happened to oranges, yellows and turquoise?  Where'd they disappear to??

I'm in a rut...as I am sure that lots of people are.

Now, here is our daydream actually coming to life.  The hub's aunt - we'll call her Auntie G - she's moving to Texas for a short bit to be near her daughter who just gave birth to Auntie G's very first grandchild.  Auntie G has graciously asked the hubs and I to accompany her on this road trip and then fly our butts home.  Can you guess what we said??:  "Um, let's think about this (1 second passes) HELL YEAH!".

All three of us will drive to Houston, however we won't be driving straight through; we'll make pit stops along the way.  We'll see the Grand Canyon (which the hubs and I have never seen. I am almost crying now just given the opportunity to view it's splendor).  We will then go to Sedona, AZ (seeing the pictures online, it looks majestic - simply amazing.) We'll then run through New Mexico and possibly stop at the Carlsbad Canyons - or maybe even White Sands (both of which are equally amazing under and above ground respectively).  Then we will head to our final destination: Houston, TX.  Clear across Texas, damn near to Louisiana - at least it looks that way on my wall map.  

We can only assume at this point that the trip to Houston will take...4 days?  If we wanted to drive all the way through, from Southern CA straight to Houston, it would take approx. 22 hours.  However, including beautiful parts of our Nation to our trip it tacks on quite a bit of hours and miles.  Although, this could absolutely be a one-time opportunity and I am excited...I'm super stoked.  I want to eat in other states, I want to drive in other states, I want to go to the bathroom in other states, I want to talk to people in other states, I want to SEE other states.

This daydream will turn into reality and I hope it will bring back yellow, orange and turquoise to our blue and gray life.


Friday, November 1, 2013

Survivor

Survivor
sur·vi·vor (plural sur·vi·vors) 
1.  somebody who survives: somebody who remains alive despite being exposed to life-threatening danger. 

What does survivor mean to you?  Survivor means that someone/something tried to afflict your being.  You fought with everything that you had to make sure that you survived.  It could be a creep in an alley way.  It could be silent: a lump, a bump, a pain or a even a little mole. Put Cancer into the picture and ‘survivor’ takes on a whole new meaning, doesn't it? “I’m a survivor”: Someone that has had chemo…someone that has had radiation…someone that has been bald…someone that has had REAL Cancer treatment.

The ultimate Survivor to me is my dad.  Dad, I hope you don’t mind that I didn’t ask you about writing this…but I hope you’ll get a smile from this. You looked death in the eyes, spat on it’s shoes and told it’s dumb ass to kick gravel and travel.  Death shivered in your presence. You are SO strong.  I think it’s amazing.

Personally, I’ve had a hard time with this ‘word’: survivor.  To me, I will not classify myself as a “survivor”.  My opinion is that I don’t deserve it.  Yes, I chose to wait for a year with ‘life-threatening danger’ growing on my back before I chose to see a dermatologist…who I am now happily calling “my dermatologist”.  He’s a nice, older gentleman that could totally be my dad’s age.  It’s a bit awkward during our 3 month visit; I’ve seen him seriously every single month since I’ve been out of work, if not twice a month in some cases, so we‘ve bonded a little bit.  The thing that makes me like him is he’ll walk into the office and say “So…did we fix you?”

Anywho - this is to all us ‘survivors’ and ‘non-survivors’ alike.  Regardless if you’ve gone through it yourself or if someone in your family has, I suppose we are all survivors in some sense of the word.  We survive the situation. We survive the thoughts. We survive the pain. We survive the sadness. We survive the day to day.

I guess we are all survivors.


Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Daydreams

I daydream of better days ahead.  Secretly, most of the daydreams are of my husband screaming out that we've won the lottery.  Oh, that one holds a dear, dear place to my heart.  I LOVE that daydream, it's my fave!  I've already cashed and spent some of the money in those daydreams.  First and foremost, the hubs and I would pay off our mother's homes.

Secondly, more than likely the exact next day, we'd go to an RV center and purchase our "coach"....or do people call it a "rig"??  Anyways, we'd buy ourselves a nice little house on wheels and see our extremely beautiful country, one state and National Park at a time while waking up to big, glorious trees and the smell of burnt firewood from the previous night.  Exhale....  My fingers are at a loss for words, that seriously sounds ah-maze-ing!

We have a HUGE map of America in our den with pins placed in super strategic areas:
  • Blue pins: Museums 
  • Green pins: National Parks
  • Red pins: Houses of family/friends
  • White pins:  Baseball fields that we'd like to check out
  • Yellow pins:  Points of interest such as the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and New Orleans. 


The hubs and I already planned out our cross-country voyage right after the whole "big Casino" rushing into our lives - even though initially to me it wasn't all that bad (and then I read statistics about Melanoma and other shit....and then I changed my mind and came to the realization that basically any "big C" diagnosis is completely crappy).  We had always talked about doing this when we retire, however things took a slight turn.  Melanoma is so unpredictable...as is every cancer...not to mention everyday life.  What better time than the present. Then both of us out of work kind of threw an annoyingly giant wrench into seeing America.

I will always have the lotto daydream and I still keep the giant map up to remind me that bigger things are always ahead.  We just have to take the leap.  But one step at a time...first step: jobs.   

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Failed friends

It's funny that when all of this bullshit starts, people warn you that some friends will fail.  You never know when it will be and, of course, you never knew who it will be.

I went to ONE support group.  It was really nice, really comforting.  The women were great; an amazing group of women that have dealt with a shit load in their lives. A lot of them mentioned that they've lost friends, some lost family...others lost their husbands.  I'm not talking about death, though in some instances I would be correct, I'm talking about people that are still living that are no longer in their life.  Personally, I've already had a handful of people fall off the Amber tree, which is fine - it's what they wanted - I guess we were never friends to begin with.  But when it happens to someone you've basically known your whole life...it kinda sucks.  O-kay, it REALLY sucks.  

Less than two hours ago, I pretty much had to break it off with my best friend...or at least who I thought was my best friend.  I feel safe writing about it because I know she hasn't liked my page or probably even read my blog. I hate to admit it, but maybe we weren't friends, either? :(  Ohhhh, this makes me SO sad!!!  I'm totally crying writing this :(

I am so thankful that I have a strong support group where I really need them to be...my backbone.  My husband is always there for me, picking me up when I am down - letting me know that I am always awesome.  My parents are great, too.  I break down on the phone with them even when I didn't feel a cry coming on.  My dad knows what's up, he's been here before.  It's nice to be able to ask about things - even though he's an uber-macho-man, but I know deep down he's uber-sensitive (yes, dad - I just wrote that about YOU!)   :)

In that one support group, this woman that has indelibly made an impression on me, she said that my vocabulary has changed and only a select few will understand it: (1) People that understand because their vocabulary has changed due to cancer and (2) people that truly love you that are willing to change their vocabulary to understand you.

I guess it makes you shine a light on the situation; what kind of people do you have in your circle?  What kind of people do you WANT in your circle?  I guess this all just weeded out who would really be there.  I am absolutely stoked with the handful that I have. I love you all, and you know who you are :)



Monday, October 14, 2013

Pass the Parasol!

I think it was around June when I first extended a hand to fellow Mela-homies and I got into contact with someone that I wish was closer (I wish all of us were closer; I wish we could all hug each other when needed).  This one is special, I feel like I know her and I know that we'd be super close friends if we lived in the same state. Her name is Julie and she's got a good thing going - check it out on her FB page: Cloudy with a chance of Melanoma.

She started this campaign called 'Pass the Parasol'.  It's a campaign that is sort of sponsored by Brelli; Julie teamed up with Brelli to help spread the word....and also spread a couple of beautiful parasols. They are UV protected and not only shield you from the sun, they protect against rain, too!  A multipurpose, gorgeous umbrella and 5% of ALL proceeds are donated to Melanoma research. I felt honored to be included in the campaign and hold the same parasol that was held by Julie and that will be held by many, many of our Mela-homies!

Here are a couple of photos that the hubs took of me and the "gorge-brelli" (aka: Gorgeous Brelli)  :)

My writing on the Brelli - I hope that all of us get a chance to write a little bit of ourselves
I like this one because you can see mirrored on my back "Cloudy" (Cloudy with a chance of Melanoma) and "Pass" (Pass the Parasol)
In the sun & rain, Brelli is your friend
Showing where I wrote and a little bit of rock....or duck face, but I like to think it's my rock face.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Discouraging

dis·cour·ag·ing  adj 
Causing loss of hope or enthusiasm: making somebody feel less motivation, confidence, or optimism about something 

This word pretty much describes life at the moment.  Hey, don't get worried, I still LOVE laughing and I still get joys out of life‘s little, beautiful moments…but things are kinda rough right now.  I guess I forgot how hard it is to be out of work.

Initially I tried to use this time to relax for once.  That didn’t really happen because within the first week I got a weird ‘stress-rash’ on my abdomen which is either rosacea or psoriasis and super cool thing is there isn’t anything that can be done to make them go away other than UV light. They go away when they feel that their job is done…and the unfortunate thing is they are totally working overtime.

I wish I was the one working overtime.

Prior to now, the last time I was out of work was in 2007.  I was a loan processor and the market basically crashed hardcore.  Everything was changing, we were pulling files on an hourly basis because guidelines had changed with rates, loan amounts, credit scores - the main structure of a loan was rewritten and we had to pull those that no longer qualified.  It was terribly stressful on everyone involved, including the borrowers.  Entire departments were cut and I was one of the handful of processors that were let go.

I went to a temp agency the first day that I was off and was basically told that I wouldn’t be hired anywhere because I had “mortgage” on my resume.  She didn’t even put me in the system; she said that her clients were specifically requesting non-mortgage applicants.  I thought she was exaggerating.  She wasn't...  That was the hardest time trying to find a job.  Until now.

There have been SO many jobs I’ve applied to where my experience was a perfect match to the job description.  It’s so discouraging.  Everyday the job hunt is a complete discouragement.  I can’t help but wonder if employers are “googling” my name, finding this very blog and it’s hindering my progress.  I hope they can see the 'real' me.  Not just the girl that writes about Cancer...or even worse they only see a girl "with" cancer. This blog was meant to help get things off my chest with high hopes of reaching and helping others that are going through a similar situation; I never thought that it would impose a risk in getting a job.

A funny thing happened this morning, I got on the computer this morning and within 10 minutes on the hunt the power turned off.  It’s not like a breaker issue, it was an its-going-to-take-7-hours issue (I looked it up on Edison‘s site from my phone - Boooo!!!).  I took that as a sign to go for a walk, so that’s exactly what I did, I walked away from discouragement.

**By the way, it's soooooo boring being out of work and no electricity until 6pm!  



Sunday, September 22, 2013

Nails on a chalkboard...

A lot of things have changed with the way I think.  Going places that require being in the sun for an extended period now make me nervous.  I now will no longer wait on seeing the doctor when something seems suspicious.  Yes, I totally may be becoming a hypochondriac.  Sunblock stands out and it makes me happy when I see huge displays in the front of stores.  Now when I hear people say that they NEED a tan; that a tan looks healthier, it literally sends a shiver up my back…it sounds like nails on a chalkboard.
 

The sun (and we can’t leave out tanning beds) emits ultraviolet radiation.  Once in the sun, your skin begins producing extra melanin in an attempt to absorb all of the solar radiation.  That suntan that you get is your skin’s defense mechanism trying to protect itself from the UV rays that it’s being exposed to.  Oh, and technically that sunburn you get is a radiation burn.


Back in the day, people that were tan were thought to be in the lower class because they had to work outside.  Affluent people were typically pale because they stayed indoors and women went to great lengths to keep their skin pasty.  Full length dresses that covered their entire body, white face powders and IF they ever did venture out in the sun, they walked around with those cute, little umbrellas known as parasols.  

Nowadays people are going to great lengths to damage their skin.  Listen, I get it – I used to be one of those people.  I used to lay out in my backyard using my SPF 4 oil and I would spritz myself with water to cool down, basically removing any of the little protection that I had on.  And that was only the front; I didn't have arms long enough to reach my back...so that got pretty much no protection at all.  

I used to go to the tanning salon in preparation for summer.  Though I only went a couple days a week for about a month, maybe two months out of the year, I still had the mindset of getting that healthy base tan every year so I would look super cute in my tank tops and wouldn't burn as easily (which is a complete crock of toasty fried crap).

Things have changed…completely.  

  • I am completely fine with double thinking activities depending on the time of day.
  • I am completely fine with being super pasty – so pasty that you can physically see my veins through my skin.  
  • I am completely fine slathering sunblock on.  
  • I’m completely fine with worrying about my skin the random days where I forget to put sunblock on.  
  • I am completely fine being the voice of annoyance to the people around me “Have you had that mole checked out?”  You WILL be wearing sunblock, right?”  
  • I am completely fine with *hopefully* having skin like milk while sun goers will have skin like leather.  
  • And, more importantly, I am completely fine with working on understanding the person that I have changed into since all of this started 

RESPECT THE SUN - BE SAFE AND USE YOUR SUNSCREEN!


Friday, September 13, 2013

Pieces of Me

I did see this on Chelsea's blog months and months ago when I first read it and I thought that it was an amazing idea.  It's a great way to help others know who you are.  So, I've been typing this post on and off for a couple months now and I felt like since I'm meeting lots of new people this would be a great time to share a part of me :)

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I hate lying.  I think that it's harder to lie than it is to tell the truth.  When you tell the truth you don't have to worry about what you've said in the past. 

Growing up I wanted to be a dolphin trainer, that is until I realized that I don’t like deep, cold water or large animals swimming around me.

After realizing the creepy dolphin trainer dealio, I decided that being a Special Effects person would be awesome.  Ever since seeing Jurassic Park, I was sold; that is until I realized that I'm not an amazing artist. 

I have a fear of the ocean, but I would much rather be in a shark cage than sky dive from a perfectly good airplane.

I really enjoy cooking new recipes and making new recipes of my own. 

The one thing I would bring to a deserted island would be chap stick…an infinite supply of chap stick (with SPF).  I can MacGyver the rest. 

I regret not playing softball in high school.

My favorite holiday is a tie between Christmas and Halloween.  Christmas because of the tree smell and the lights in/on homes.  Halloween because of the costumes and the creepiness.  

I believe in pretty much all things paranormal – except for aliens.  

I almost cried at a Pedigree commercial.  It's a new one and totally sweet with home videos of the cutest dogs and a sappy song.  Take my advise ladies, if you're close to your 'monthly', change the channel!

I think cemeteries are beautiful, quiet and comforting.   

I once almost passed out from accidentally sitting on a tube of fake blood.  I felt like such a nerd when I realized that I wasn’t bleeding profusely.

I drive like a dude.  I even make fun of women drivers since I’ve lifted myself out of that category. 

I enjoy the fact that I actually listen to the little voice in my head that knows right between wrong.

Japanese food is my favorite.   Ramen, sushi, katsu pork with curry sauce...mmm....and shabu-shabu. If you haven’t tried Shabu-Shabu yet, you must immediately.  Seriously, stop reading this and head to the nearest joint.

I totally talk to myself.  Not in front of other people, that would be weird. 

I love scary movies, they're my favorite.  Even though I will absolutely wake up in the middle of the night and ask the hubs to accompany me to the bathroom.

I'm not discriminatory, I love all dogs, though my favorite dogs are pitties; but I love any in the bully breeds.  And please don't say stuff like 'their jaws lock' around me, you’ll get schooled.    

I like to think (know) that I am just a touch....psychic.  I've had several dreams that led me to truths.    
I am independent to a fault.  If I need personal help, I rarely ask because I like to think that “I can handle it”.

I used to have a 4ft tall play house in the back yard and I tried jumping off it with an umbrella and shopping bags in hopes of parachuting.  It didn’t work...

...And I’ve never broken a bone and I hope I never do. 

I hate spiders.  Hate.  Them.  Oh, and snakes - they are totally creepy.  O-kay fine, I hate everything with no legs or more than 4.

I love my husband and family lots, but sometimes I wish I had more friends. 

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Admiration graduation; part two

Most of you know that I've started a new Facebook page for this blog and the neat thing is that I've had a couple of "Melahomies" that I've been following comment on my page and it gives me butterflies.  Lots-o-b-flies.

It's still hard to talk/write about things, but at this point I feel like I've already opened up so much that some of you know me pretty well.  Most of you are my family, some are my friends, others are people that I have never had a chance to shake a hand with - though I hope one day we will get the chance to hug and share a laugh.

I can't help but smile when I see that people have read this very blog in Russia, Germany, Australia, Thailand and several other countries. It's overwhelming, extremely humbling and somewhat worrying (only 'worrying' because I know that Melanoma was the key part of the internet investigation).  I know it all started with a search engine, but I hope it ended with my words.

I started this blog to keep my family and friends aware of my inner thoughts and feelings and also hoped that I might reach an outer circle.  I never imagined that it would reach a larger circle, even though that was a hope.  I am so very happy that the circle is getting larger, as is our voice, and I am so extremely proud to be a part of the roar that we have.


Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Thank you Life, may I have another?

The other day I was thinking how I hadn't written anything in a while.  It actually made me feel kind of sad, like I haven't had a lot of random thoughts like I normally do.  I suppose it's true, I've really only been focused on getting back on track. Almost like I've been mentally hiding from my 'random thoughts'.

A couple of times when the hubs and I were chatting during the last month he made mention that he had this bad feeling that things would get worse before they would get better.  I thought it had something to do with the unemployment...which by the way has not started yet...it's been super.  Well, yesterday while doing laundry, I walk back inside our place and notice some of Tony's things with an interesting set of papers on the dining table: Discharge paperwork.

I swiftly walk through our small apartment and I can't find him.  I straight up looked in closets thinking that I would find my strong, tall man in a crumbled pile on the floor.  I pace for about 30 seconds before I can hear his footsteps coming up to our patio and the look on his face confirms it all.  He was let go, too.

Breakdown commences in 3 - 2 - 1....

You all know that I am a firm believer in everything happens for a reason so I am betting it all on black that we're going to win the lottery.  I mean, we've got to, right?  Wouldn't that be awesome?!  Yes, yes it would.  I also know that we all learn and grow from life's experiences, but there are times when I just want to scream "What else are you going to throw at us, LIFE?"  I definitely don't want to shout "Is that all ya' got!?"  I don't want to challenge the universe, that would be a very, very bad idea.

This last year...who am I kidding, the last two years have been pretty stressful.  With all of the learning and growing that the hubs and I have been doing, we're going to be so much stronger and smarter than we already are.  I am just so unbelievably ready for all of this to be over and put in the past where it belongs...



Tuesday, August 20, 2013

The attack of the 'OMAs!

It’s the attack of the ‘OMAs!!  Ahhhh….they’re coming, lock your windows and doors!

Since the biopsy last week of my angry lymph node on my neck, I’ve been trying not to worry about it because, as I’ve said before:  Worrying will never change the outcome.  The first couple of days were pretty bad.  I wasn’t sleeping, I was terribly worried about it being Melanoma, blah blah blah.  Wednesday and Thursday were just plain crappy on the crap-o-meter.

Then on Friday, I decided to do some research based on Dr. Surgeon‘s suggestion that it ‘might be Lymphoma‘.  Yes, I am a bit of a detective - I may have been one in a past life.  I find that there are two main branches of Lymphoma: Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.  Under the Non-Hodgkin's branch there are a ton of different types.  I’ve read on some websites that there may be as many as 50!  That is not a typo - 50!  Makes me want to kick my leg up like Molly Shannon’s SNL character “Sally O’Malley”.  I’m FIFTY!

Anyways.  During my research I learned that there are quite a few of Non-Hodgkin’s that can involve the skin and have a RASH that looks damn similar to what I have.  People also experience easy bruising, fatigue, fever, more than normal hair loss, itchy skin, headaches and of course a swollen lymph node(s) (among other symptoms).   As of late I am waking pretty much every morning to a new bruise with  no idea where the heck it came from, I’m always tired and almost sore, I always have a low grade fever typically around 99.3 - 99.7, I shed hair like a sick dog and we can’t forget the whole headache debacle.

You’d think that it would have freaked me out, but it didn‘t.  It was almost an ‘ah-ha’ moment.  Ah-ha…that’s what it is!  A weight was lifted.  It was as if I could finally exhale.  I don’t need to search for ‘what-it-is’ anymore.

Need not worry, yesterday I got the call from UCI and spoke to nurse G.  She told me that both tests came back negative for malignancy in Melanoma AND Lymphoma.  Phew!!  It IS great news and I was stoked!  It was a huge relief, but not the one that I am looking for.

The majority of you will not understand this: I feel like something is wrong.  I feel like something is medically wrong and the doctors have missed it.  I’ve felt this way since April and I've never felt like this prior to then.  I’m searching for the reason of why I am feeling this way.  It’s not fun living like this.  Not at all, it sucks, it's incredibly frustrating.  I know what you’re thinking: Just snap the hell out of it!  You’re ’cancer-free’; move on with your life! Yeah, yeah, yeah - it’s a lot easier said than done.  I told the hubs last night that "NO" is not the answer I am looking for.  I am looking for "YES" - 'Yes, this is what is wrong with you' - 'here is the name of the reason you’ve been feeling like an insane person for the last 4 months'.

I know, it sounds crazy, I know.  I can hear myself when I am crying and trying to explain this unusual creepy feeling.   I don’t want cancer and I definitely don't want another type.  I wish that I was never diagnosed with Melanoma because I wouldn’t have all of this crap that has so annoyingly invited itself along for the joyride.  I wouldn’t feel like a mental patient.  But I do have Melanoma…and I sound crazy...and I need to learn how to deal with it.

So, how does said crazy person deal with being…well, crazy?  You cry when you feel like it.  You get stuff off your chest by writing them down if it’s easier than talking.  You try to get out of your head for a mini anti-anxiety vacation - whether it be a bike ride or cooking something yummy.  You sign up with support group(s) online and in person.  I’ve already registered to chat forums online, but I felt like I would still be sort of hiding behind the security of a computer and possibly wouldn‘t open up completely.

With that said, I just registered for my first ‘live’ support group and it’s tomorrow at noon!!  I am really, really excited!  I am really excited in the possibility of finding out that I may not be as crazy as I feel, and that my friends, would feel really freaking amazing.  We'll see how it goes; I think the groups in the evening may be a better play since there might be more people there.  I'm still researching options in the area but at least I took one HUGE step in the right direction :)
I've got to keep this one...


Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Fine Needle Aspiration

I saw Dr. Surgeon this morning, luckily they were able to squeeze me instead of me waiting until my next follow up appointment the end of October.  Whoah, if they would have made me wait until then, I would have freaked myself out for sure.

He said that he was glad that I came in because Melanoma is nothing to play with, which I obviously know.  He thinks that it's weird that I have this lymph node on the back of my neck and if it were Melanoma then it would have typically gone to my left pitter.  As he felt it more he said that he was pretty confident that it wasn't Melanoma but that he'd need to do a biopsy to confirm.  I totally wasn't expecting that.  I was expecting full removal, as in surgery, to make sure that the entire node is checked out.  I guess it's a good thing that I didn't need surgery; I just don't want anything missed.

Fine-needle aspiration biopsy (FNABFNA or NAB), or fine-needle aspiration cytology (FNAC), is a diagnostic procedure used to investigate superficial (just under the skin) lumps or masses.

Basically what happens is they take a needle/syringe, stick it into the lymph node itself and then move it quickly in and out and side to side while pulling back on the syringe to suck some of the tissue into the needle.  JOY!  It was just as fun as it sounds!  He did this twice...  All jokes aside - it wasn't terrible, but it wasn't anywhere near being comfortable.  It sort of stung.  I should get used to this because I've got freaking infant veins and whenever I am getting blood work done the nurses dig around in my arms trying to find a blood line.

The reason for the double biopsy is to get tissue samples to test for Melanoma and then also Lymphoma.  He said that in some cases peeps with Melanoma do get Lymphoma, but to try not to worry about it.  I think it's somewhat normal for anyone with any type of cancer to get other kinds.  It could just be an angry lymph node and it may stay that way for the rest of my life if it's benign.  What I do know is that it's angry right now, the biopsy left it not feeling so great.  It's bruising up a bit, too.

Picture of bruising (this is taken in reflection of mirror - the node is on left side of neck)
A shot of where the lymph node is.  It actually isn't swollen from the biopsy, this is the size that it has been this whole time.

It takes around three days to get the results; hopefully by Friday I should know whats up. I'm actually not worried about it.  In a strange way this is all very interesting to me.  At this point, there's nothing that I can do to change this.  If it's the worst case scenario, then it is what it is.  At least I'll be able to get all of the scans that I've wanted to get :)

Thursday, August 1, 2013

NOT a Lovely Lady Lump

It's hard to talk about yourself, at least for me.  It's especially hard to talk to someone that is a difficult listener, at least to me.  It becomes harder to talk when you're scared.  You don't want to sound scared, which is exactly what I am.  You don't want to sound weird, which of course I totally am...but I like to think in a good way.

I've had this enlarged lymph node on the left side of the base of my head now for almost three weeks.  Normal people probably wouldn't notice this, but for someone like me - someone now hyper-aware of her body - it's terrifying.  It's even more terrifying when you feel like you can't mention anything about it.  So what do I do?  I turn to writing.  I get this shit off of my chest.  It's needed and I do it.  Here it is:

I was scratching my head one day at work, it actually was the day before I was let go.  I scratch my head a lot.  It's itchy.  It's annoying.  It's annoyingly itchy.  It was a Thursday afternoon and I feel this lump.  It's not like a 'Black Eyed Peas' lump; definitely NOT a "lovely lady lump".  It's a hard, creepy lump.  A lump that I've never felt before.

Along with this strange rash that I have on my abdomen, now I have this weird lump.  Awesome!

When the rash wasn't going away or really seemingly getting any better in a few days, the hubs told me to make an appointment with Dr. Dermatologist; so I did.

I had my appointment and I made mention of  the lymph node to which Dr. Dermatologist responded immediately with "When are you seeing Dr. Surgeon again?"  Dr. Surgeon is the Melanoma dude.  That didn't make me feel any better...  He wrote me a Rx for some antibiotics in hopes it would shrink my node and we scheduled an appointment for two weeks. Well, I've finished the antibiotics and it's still there.  Still there; still the same size.  I may be paranoid but I've felt another one right next to it.

Also another possible paranoia is the fact that my neck has been sore.  Of course, it's more than likely psychosomatic.  Or more like PSYCHO!  But really, it's probs' stress.  I don't have a job.  I have a hard time talking.  I'm freaking out about g-damn, stupid ass "skin" cancer - aka MELAFUCKINNOMA and I have a shit load of bills.  Rent: super.  Hospital bills:  awesome.  COBRA: even more super awesome.  Not to mention the rest of the shit that we pay for.  Oh, and it's been ah-maze-ing on me & the hub's relationship.  He's basically downright sick of my shit.  Just lovely...
 
So, anyways...here it is...me venting.  I've got an angry lymph node, an angry husband and I am seeing Dr. Dermatologist again next Tuesday - I hope I can get re-enrolled by then.  I was really expecting  an unemployment check before I enrolled but it looks like that's not going to happen.  My 'slogan': "Everything happens for a reason": It's getting a little hard to appreciate as of late.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Dear 16 year old me

There is a PSA made a while ago and it’s amazingly emotional, strong and it gets the message across in the best way possible - showing real people that have been affected.  You're not reading about them, you're SEEING and LISTENING to them.  I still see people on Facebook sharing it, as recently as this morning, and it makes me smile, all the while mentally reliving the first time I watched it.  I watched it at work during lunch one day and I had to stop it so I could go to the bathroom and cry my eyes out.  I dared not watch the rest of it….until the next day at home alone.  

Of course I stopped it the first time right smack in the middle; right in the heat of the emotional part.  The first time I watched this it was shortly after diagnosis and probably a week or two before my surgery.  I wasn't sleeping, I was literally a pasty ball of fear fueled emotions.  I still haven't shared it because I didn't want to prompt the same feelings in others.  What if they were having an awesome day and I just totally made them cry and ruined it?  Shit man, I don't want to do that.  But now I can watch this through a different light.
Hopefully this video works.  I've included the link, too, just in case :)  Please spend 5 minutes and watch.


What would you tell your 16 year old self? 

I would tell myself:
  • Do not worry about what people think. 
  • You need to open up more because people will never know the true YOU until you let go of insecurities (I used to be SUPER shy – took me waaay too long to figure this one out). 
  • That one breakup will not end you even though you think it will, and you will be thankful that you went through it so you know what you DON’T want.
  • That other breakup, you should have done it sooner…
  • Yes, you find someone - an amazing man - with all of the things you DO want.
  • You won’t get a boob job because you don’t need a boob job.  You will spend your saved money on a giant subwoofer and an annoying, loud ass muffler.  You were sooo fast and soooo furious. 
  • There still aren’t any surgeries yet that will fix your eardrums because of said loud music you listened to.
  • Don’t be afraid of doctors, they are there to help you.
  • Don't be afraid of outcomes, they will shape you into who you are.


MAKE IT A GREAT DAY PEOPLE :)  GIVE AN HONEST SMILE TO A STRANGER TODAY. 

Saturday, July 20, 2013

In a fog with a blog

This sucks.  I read to my husband what I write and I can hear myself….only writing about Melanoma.  Well, I suppose that makes sense seeing that the title of my silly blog is ‘Holy Moly, Melanomy’.  I also suppose it makes sense that I've only had surgery a short 3 ½ months ago.  Wow.  When I think of it that way, it’s only been a very short 3 ½ ago.  It's very, very fresh.  I’m a newborn in this weird fog.

I don’t like this fog.  I hate it.  I like being able to see.  To see my life.  To see my husband‘s happy face.  To see me, being happy with everything.

This is lame.  Complete lame-sauce.

How do I get out of this fog?  A super thick, fear inducing fog?  I don’t know…  I can’t see any exit signs, and that scares me.  I don’t want to be scared.  I don’t like being scared.

I remember at times when I was at home sick from school and my mom had to work - I’d play this made-up game that I called “ten things”.  This may sound strange to some of you.  When I was home alone and felt scared or I heard a noise that made me feel like someone was breaking in, I’d look around in whatever room I was in and look for 10 things that I could possibly fatally wound someone with.   Yes, I just wrote “fatally wound“.  

The way that I could 'pass a level' in my ten things game would be if I could find those 10 fatal objects, then I could move on to the next room.  This was the way that I would get my mind off that evil mailman - which would scare me by making noise outside my house and would turn my dog into a bloodthirsty crazed wolf.  That room could be the kitchen - duh, super easy.  The bathroom was especially hard; what to do with a loofa, shower gel and a shower curtain?  Believe me, I’ve figured it out.  I have several potential weapons in every room.  With this game, I found courage.

Why don’t I have a weapon to battle my thoughts?  I found courage by looking around my house - thinking of 409, candle holders, toilet plungers and records as weapons. Why don't I have that same courage by looking inside myself?  Where is that same warrior in me?  She’s in there, along with all that raw courage, why can’t I find her again?

Friday, July 19, 2013

Craptastic Sundae


Lately I’ve been feeling a little down on myself.  This stupid asshole of a cancer has affected all aspects of my life.  I've been trying to focus on trying to get back to normal, which is no easy task.  Even though I was barely touched with Melanoma, that touch was enough to mentally jack me the hell up.  I suppose it was a little more than just a touch, it was more like an aggressive shoulder check.  

It’s affected everything.  Every. Thing.  My work was affected.  I can't help but think if I didn't have this stupid shit, then I wouldn't have obsessed on it and I'd probably still have a job....even though it was technically a "lay-off".  My relationship with my husband has been affected.  I have a terrible time opening up and I've been just a little bit more koo-koo in the last week than I normally am (due to obvious reasons).  My sleep has been affected, luckily the last few days have been fine - but I normally only get a couple of good night's sleep a week.  And last but definitely not least, my emotions and thoughts have been affected.  They were already screwy to begin with so that part has been particularly super fun to deal with!  (I'm so sorry honey - things will get better, I promise!)

Throwing in a job loss on top of all the ways that Melanoma has affected my life has just been splendid.  Absolutely splendid.  I've got some sort of stress rash on my belly - at least that's what I am calling it even though it's not itchy.  Lots of little, teeny patches of angry skin.  Why, it's the perfect cherry topper to my craptastic sundae!  I've tried vitamin E, cortizone cream, super moisturizing lotion and it's not really getting any better...it's sort of getting worse.  Hey - now I have time to get to the doctor!



Saturday, July 13, 2013

This sucks.

This morning I woke up at 3:30, wide awake.  My first thought was 'Go back to sleep, you need to get up for work in a couple of hours'.  Oh yeah, wait a second, it's Friday, I can stay awake or go back to sleep and actually sleep in.  Wait a second, I lost my job...      Shit.

That's right folks, I lost my job.  Not like oh-it's-lost-and-I-can't-find-it, but I was let go.  I was laid off.  I was cut.  I am no longer working.  There is no easy way to say it...or type it.  Add that to my list of stresses.

This sucks.

I cried a little bit during my "exit interview" though I held it together while I packed 5 years of my work life into a box (which I totally forgot about an entire drawer - my oatmeal must feel so left behind).  I lost it when I got home.  The hubs hugging me while I was totally shaking and crying in his arms.

This fucking sucks.

I've been laid off before, it's never easy.  You have to come to terms with being "the one" that the company can do without.  The last two companies that I've worked at I was laid off twice from each one...they let me go, called me back and then let me go again months to years later.  You can always tell when it was coming because your boss tends to avoid you.  This time was no different.  I knew it was coming; I've been mentally preparing for it for the last several weeks.

Driving home was surreal.  This was a drive that I've done for over 5 years.  Good news - I don't have to deal with the stupid toll road increases anymore...or gas prices.  Ha!  I can't afford them anymore!  My intestines started hurting almost immediately; it's a distinct, sharp pain. I had to drive while putting pressure on my lower stomach.  My kidneys hurt, could be all the wine I had last night - yeah, that's probably it.

Now it's time to get my mind right; it hasn't been "right" for a couple months now.  I'm not really the same person since Melanoma forced itself into my life.  I can use this time to learn how to relax, maybe meditate or some shit like that.  I don't want to spend time being sad, I've already done enough of that over the last 6 months.  I'd rather spend time looking forward to a new chapter in my life...spending time getting back to ME.  Everything happens for a reason.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Coffin Beds

I’ve heard people refer to tanning beds as “coffin beds”.  Makes sense, they kind of look like one.  They open relatively the same way; they’re just one door versus the deathly double door variety.  You lie in them, silent and still.  Quite a few of us ladies tribute the use of tanning beds to our cell mutation.  Though I’m sure there are a handful of men that will admit to using them, too.  I know that about 60% of the time that I was at a tanning salon, either a man was working there or a man was there working on his tan.

Tanning beds and coffins have since taken on a whoooooole new meaning and it could never be any realer.  That stupid ‘coffin bed ’ could potentially put us in a real one…all for a tan (or a typically a burn in my case).  And a tan that we shelled money out for – how lame!  I think tanning bed manufactures should totally start making tanning beds look like real coffins.  That would make peeps think twice.  Although it may backfire and cause the goths to have a sudden urge for a glorious glow. 

I’ve read that the ultra violet light emitted by tanning beds is as carcinogenic as cigarettes, arsenic and asbestos – just to name a few.  Way creepy.  This is why legislation banning the use of tanning beds by anyone under the age 18 is sweeping the country.  The Nation is catching on.  Currently the only states that ban use by anyone under age 18 is CA (which we were the FIRST state to do this!), NV, OR (as of 01/2014), TX (as of 09/2013) and VT.  Bans for under anyone under 17 is currently only NJ & NY.  Lots of other states have bans, but those need to change for the better. 
Here is the link from the National Conference of State Legislatures that includes the above information:

If you're in a state that currently does not have a ban, or that ban could be updated to a respectable age limit, and you have an opportunity to write a letter to your legislators, I BEG that you do.  Lets try to change the future for our younger peeps so hopefully they wont have to go through what we do :)




Monday, July 8, 2013

Days off vs. Off days

As I was getting ready for work this morning after a glorious 4 days off, I realized how much I needed them.  Every single day that I’ve taken off from work, for as far back as I can remember, has been taken off because of being sick, having a terrible period day, my belly acting up, body shutting down in need of sleep, doctor’s appointments or surgeries.  Don’t get me wrong, those days are absolutely needed.  Sprawled out on the couch in a zombiefied state where you absolutely cannot go anywhere except the bathroom is a justified ‘off day’ in my book.

I haven’t had a 'fun' day off since my vacation to Cabo in May of 2011.  I had 5 beautiful days off…then guess what happened?  I got freaking bronchitis.  I started getting sick during the very end of the vacation – I even had to leave the wedding early which was the whole reason for the damn trip in the first place.  I was out sick for the entire next work week.  My body was like “Oh, you thought you were relaxed?  BOOM!  There ya go, take that, lungs!”.  Then a few weeks after that my eyes got all crazy and decided to get swollen.  BOOM!  Take that, eyes!  I’m telling you, my body has a sick sense of humor.  Get it?  Sick?   Hee hee, I’m so punny. 

The results from the biopsies taken from the colonoscopy on Monday came back on Tuesday.  One day after.  The office called me – they asked me to come in that day.  Um, no thank you!  I was expecting a little more time, much more than a mere 24 flipping hours!  I need to mentally prepare for these little things, ya know? I made the appointment for Friday since we had the day off from the holiday. I tried not to think about it.  Why couldn’t’ they just tell me over the phone?!  Don’t they know that coming in for results when nothing is told over the phone is terrifying?!  Fortunately, there are no cancer cells in my bummer and I could, again, exhale.  Everything else is still the same, I still have ulcerative colitis and new player - diverticulitis.  And the doctor highly recommended me taking medication for the colitis (like I should have been doing) and wrote me a script for it.  But there is no Melanoma or any other cancer in my colon.  Oh happy day!  After 3:00pm on Friday, I could enjoy the remaining 3 days off.    

I was able to go wherever I wanted but I was happily sprawled out on the couch.  I was not in a zombiefied state – but I was watching zombies thanks to The Walking Dead marathon, which was awesome!  I literally just told the hubs at the surgi-center on Monday morning that they need to start playing the episodes again; "they" must have listened.  It felt amazing doing nothing on a day off without a care in the world.  It was refreshing.    
 
I prefer days off vs. off days.  Off days just suck.
 

Monday, July 1, 2013

A little chat about 'bummer' exams/surgeries

Well, since I've been completely open about Melanoma, I might as well be open about everything else medical going on my life.  Here is a little about....(dun, dun, duuuuun) colonoscopies.  

Excitable tummies run in my family.  My mom and grandma also have/had excitable tummies.  I like that: “excitable tummy“, that sounds better than “bubbly guts“.  So, growing up with a mom having an excitable stomach made me think that mine is completely normal.  Until the day that I poo’d blood.  LOTS of blood.  Like ‘I-can’t-see-the-bottom-of-the-toilet’ blood.  Yeah...Let’s talk about it…  I was at work the first time it happened.  I was under a shit load of stress - pun intended

I walked back to my desk, probably white as a ghost.  Actually, I’m sure I was because two people asked me what was wrong.  “Nothing, nothing is wrong”.  I remember emailing both my boyfriend (now known as the one and only, 'the hubs') and my mom telling them that I just saw a huge amount of blood and I wasn't talking period stuff.  They both called me within seconds.  Their advice was consistent with each other: CALL THE DOCTOR!  

A few weeks before the “bloody incident” we had moved to a new apartment and I was promoted to much more stressful position at the company I was working with at the time.  Dr. Dummy basically told me that I had ‘strained’ myself and that was ‘normal‘.  Bleeding THAT much is normal?  Maybe I hadn’t relayed to him how much I bled.  Actually, I did.  I told him everything, just short of bringing him to the bathroom with me, which I totally would have done.  The visit itself was a crock of bloody poo.  No blood work, no looking at my bum, no stool sample (o-kay, fine, I was completely stoked about that part).  I knew in my gut that something was wrong.  Again, pun intended.  

I was laid off shortly after that; I was still having symptoms.  The bleeding subsided but the pain did not - something was wrong.  I drove down to Hawthorne and saw the doctor that I grew up seeing.  I didn‘t have insurance, but I wanted a doctor that knew me...I wanted a doctor I could trust.  I loved her, she was such an amazing doctor.  She confirmed that something was indeed wrong, but I needed to have a colonoscopy and advised that I should absolutely wait until I had insurance again.  I got rehired at the same place about 3 months later and soon I had insurance again.  Of course, I put it off for a few (several) months - but I built up enough courage to go to a different doctor near me and ask for a referral.  

I was referred to a cranky, little Indian gastroenterologist.  Very blunt and straight to the point with absolutely no sympathy whatsoever.  When I woke up from the colonoscopy, I was crying from the anesthesia and I see the hubs sitting there with this super sad look on his face.  A look like “I am so sorry”.  I asked the nurse what was going on and she said that she will grab the doctor.  Dr. Cranky came back in, snapped that he had already told me about the ulcerative colitis - but then quietly said that its normal for me not to remember due to the anesthesia.  I tend to like doctors that are straight to the point, but come on, if your patient is scared…show them just a little touch of compassion.  Don’t act like an inconsiderate jack hole that has no time for crying little girls.

Prior to Melanoma, I’m supposed to have a lovely colonoscopy every five years.  As of yesterday, I was 6 and a half years over due.  Anyone that has had one typically doesn’t jump for joy to have one, unless you enjoy pooping like a chicken ALL day and not eating.  That’s why I think it’s funny that they are constantly asking you who you are when you’re a center waiting for your ‘bummer examination‘.  “What’s your name?”; “Can you spell your last name?”; “What’s your date of birth?”; “What procedure are you having?”: “What’s your doctor’s name?”.  Ummm.....Whatd'ya think I did?  Took out the person in the waiting room so I could steal their colonoscopy?  Ha!!   "Bitch, had over your bracelet, I'm taking your colonoscopy!"  Whatever, I guess it’s protocal….a very strange protocol, but I suppose it's effective.  

This morning I had my second colonoscopy.  Now that Melanoma has joined the party, I need to have one every three years.  I don’t know if it’s because of the Colitis, too - or if it’s just because of the cancer, but regardless - I’ve got to get used these crappy surgeries being more frequent than than I was expecting.  They really aren’t bad at all.  It’s the prep that stinks. Hee hee, I'm so punny.  And the waiting for the results - other than that, it’s really super easy.

The last time I had to drink these two super strong saline solution type “drinks”.  They were terrible.  Only about 10 ounces each, but they packed a terrible punch.  Terrible.  Ugh!  And because I had to drink them both at the same time, there was no ‘easing into it’.  There was no testing the water with one foot to see how it is.  Some creep walks by and literally throws your ass into the deep end of the laxative pool.  By the end of that night I was in the bathroom crying.  Not only did I know that something was up with my innards, I am bawling and my husband is in the bathroom with me trying his best to console his broken down wife.  Can you say - awkward?  You can also say, without a doubt - love.  That’s love; I have the best damn husband ever.    

This time was a bit easier. Instead of jumping in, you ease into it.  I got two little ducolax laxative pills to take after my breakfast of homemade egg drop soup.  At 10am you start mixing powdered laxatives with 32oz of clear liquids and then you do the rest at 5pm to finish your 64oz concoction.  By the end of the day, I had taken 16 doses of laxatives.  Whoah.  Luckily the powdered stuff doesn’t have any flavor and you can mix it with water, apple juice, light Gatorade - really anything that is clear and isn’t red or purple.  If you get hungry, you eat some Jell-O or you can have some broth.  Really that’s all that you can have.  At certain parts of the day, I was hungry - but then you get over it.  Most of the day I was nauseous; 64oz of crappy medicated liquid can do that to you.  

When you go through this, try to make your appointment as early as you can get in.  From the lack of calories, you’ll be pretty weak with a possible headache and just downright hungry AND thirsty.  After leaving the center, the hubs and I stopped at Carl’s Jr. and I got myself a western bacon cheeseburger….mmmm…..I think it was delicious.  I hardly remember it.  The nurse said as we were leaving that they shot me up with enough sedatives to knock out a horse.  I’ve got a high tolerance for that stuff apparently.  I don’t remember waking up.  I don’t remember starting to get naked in front of the nurse while attempting to dress myself…I assume that’s when she mentioned the massive sedatives that I was given.  I don’t remember leaving.  I barely remember the doctor telling me that he took two biopsies and that I have a “touch of” diverticulitis which momma has, too.  Remember: excitable tummies apparently run in the family.  I came home and slept like a sedated horse for three and a half hours.

So, I’ve got a week before I can over the results with my GI doctor.  The hard part is over.  I’m sure all is good, I’ve just got another intestinal issue to add the list.  Whatevs!  As long as Melanoma isn't putting it's name on the list for entrance to another part of my body/innards, I'm good to go!

People - be aware of your body.  If something isn't normal, go to the doctor.  Have your annual exam...be seen by someone other than yourself.  Be proactive with yourself. 
You're the only YOU that you have



Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Self-Diagnosis a la WebMD


As I’ve mentioned before, I used to hate going to the doctor.  Hated it.  I knew if I was sick or had an infection of some sort they would just put me on antibiotics.  And most of the time those antibiotics would make me throw up. I only went if I felt that I actually needed those silly antibiotics – of course after doing my “home remedies” that obviously didn’t work out so well.

One time (...in band camp - just kidding) I had woken up and my eyes were sore.  I thought nothing of it because hello - I had just woke up!   I just went on with the day.  The next day, they were even more sore.  It straight up hurt to blink.  To BLINK, people!  I thought it would be a great idea to check out WebMD.  Holy shit, my eyeballs are swollen and they are going to swell so much it’s going to cut off circulation to the cornea and I am going to go effing BLIND in a matter of hours!  Needless to say, I made an appointment.  There were no home remedies that could help my peepers.  Not to worry, I was just stressed and it was a symptom of my ulcerative colitis.  Didn’t know that, did you?  Neither did I.  It can aggravate a whole bunch of crap.  Damn intestines… 
 
The fun thing with Melanoma and WebMD is that every little thing could be *gasp* cancer!   I’ve been trying to stay away from it and just let a doctor actually check me out before I lose sleep on headaches, belly issues and every slight little twinge of pain.   
 
I had to share this comic because it's SO much more true than it's ever been....and it's hilarious.