Friday, July 30, 2010
I've made the decision that as long as they can do both surgeries at the same time (replacing my expanders for real implants & hysterectomy) I'm doing it in Houston. If the scheduling &/or my blood levels aren't good enough for that I may split them up & do the hysterectomy part here & go down to Houston at a later date for my foobs. I think I can live with that.
However, right now I'm slowly getting more & more irked with MDA because I keep sending messages asking if I can still do both surgeries with my blood levels where they are & when I can do it. All I keep getting in return are messages saying my request/questions have been forwarded to the doctor in question. Its been a week since I started contacting them. I still haven't gotten the final word on whether Dr. K (in Houston) is actually happy w/ my blood levels. I just got the results over the phone (Thanks, Sarah!) & asked for them to be faxed to MDA. I didn't ask many questions except to know I barely scraped by... I know how conservative MDA is, so I'm not really getting my hopes up yet. Heck, at this point I'm not going to get my hopes up until they put the IV in my arm & give me that great stuff that 'relaxes' me right before surgery. I think I just need to carry around some of that stuff... You know, like how people w/ bad allergies carry around an epi-pen? I need a relaxi-pen! I get all worked up & then I can't eat or sleep.
Friday, July 23, 2010
Monday, July 19, 2010
Rachel's not crawling yet. She pushes herself backwards with her hands & can sometimes convince her fat little legs (I mean little as in their not very long, not that they don't have extreme girth) to lift her fat little butt (again little is that she's 7 months old, not that its not extremely well-padded) to take a small crawl-step forward. However, these crawl steps are few & far-between! She basically likes to pull her feet up and wave her hands around while she rocks back & forth on her belly like an odd-looking rocking horse! Mom says I used to do the same thing.
Simon is still not potty trained. He has had 5 total successes & I can't even begin to enumerate how many failures. We've tried bribing him (toys, food, etc), giving him targets, telling him we'll be happy if he does it right, sitting him on the potty for hours, having him run around naked, doling out gentle discipline for peeing (or #2) on the floor, etc. He has shown that he knows what to do, he just doesn't want to do it. He can also hold it for tremendously long because as soon as we put a diaper on him its fairly bursting w/ pee (&/or #2) within 5 minutes. At this point we're doing all of the above simultaneously in the hopes that its going to click one of these days. Last night after he had 2 'accidents' at mom's house I brought him home to sit on the potty for a while. He did what he was supposed to FINALLY!!! Even though he'd already made a puddle at mom's he filled the potty pretty well! He got a potty dance from me, a "good job" & "I'm proud of you" from Andrew & me, & two toy trucks (a monster/hot rod John Deere tractor & hot rod fire truck). I kept praising him right up until he went to bed.
I sold Febe on Saturday. She's now in her new home in Northern/central Indiana. The family that came out to buy her was really sweet. She's going to be the foundation for their Equine Ministry. They have a daughter of about 8 or 9 that has Down's Syndrome. One of their son's is about 15. The son is the one that's going to work with her primarily until she settles into their routine. However, they hope to use her for their daughter as well as other children in need. They're also going to breed her if/when they find a stallion. Its weird to be horseless again for the 2nd time in a year. However, I know she went to a good place & that it'll work out best for me/us to not have a horse to worry about right now. In the next year or 2 I hope to get to a place again where I can have a horse & actually use it.
Andrew has been feeling kind of bad lately. He went to the doctor & they can't find anything wrong with him. The doctor said he was probably just extraordinarily stressed from everything that's going on in our lives. Andrew's not one to relish being idle, but since he closed his business, he's not had a 'purpose' for his days. I'm not home enough to help him out of the doldrums. So he's struggling a bit. However, I think he feels a bit better knowing that there's nothing seriously wrong with him.
I'm still waiting for my meeting with my local ob/gyn. I've had several people put the bug in my ear that I should still have my hysterectomy done in Houston. Most people's opinion is based on the fact that I *could* have cancer & if that is the case, they want to be sure I have someone familiar with cancer doing the surgery in case there's something different that needs to be done. I'm still leaning towards having it done here though. The chances of me having ovarian cancer are fairly slim (less than 5% I think) due to my age. However, I think the chances of having a more complicated surgery (open abdominal surgery instead of laproscopic) is probably greater than the cancer risk. If I do have to have the open abdominal surgery I'd rather be close to home for my recovery. I don't relish a 900 mile journey home with a big incision in my belly. I'm confident that Dr. B can do a good job. I'm still open-minded though (or at least I'm trying to be). I'm waiting on a reply from Dr. K from Houston on her opinion. Plus I'm going to ask Dr. B what her opinion is on Wednesday. All I know is I want it done ASAP!!
Tuesday, July 13, 2010
I think Rachel will be crawling in a few days - hopefully by next week. She's getting her knees under her and pushing herself forward on her face. Its quite comical to watch. I tried to get some video (using my iPhone), but the little twerp would roll onto her back & grin at me instead!
Once again, I've been thinking. Do the decisions we make really change us? If I could go back & change just one thing, would that make me a different person? Better? Worse? On the one hand, I don't regret who I am, but who's to say that I couldn't be a better person if I'd chosen more appropriately at one point in my life? On the other hand, sometimes the quirks of fate seem to slap me in the face instead of patting me on the back. Oh, I know God is ultimately in control of everything. However, its our free will that really screws things up!
For instance, if I was bosom buddies with someone who then turned around & stabbed me in the back, am I a better person for it - or does it just show that I lacked perception in chosing my bosom buddy? Another instance, when I hid myself away after my boyfriend's death, did I delay the joy that Andrew & I have found? Had we met sooner, would we have more than 2 living children and 4 saints in Heaven? Would I be a better wife, him a better husband? Would my cancer have come sooner or later? If I'd phrased a comment differently, would the response still have been so dramatic? There are so many questions & so few answers. God, the author of Life, is the only one who knows.
Sometimes its the small things that can completely change someone's life - either for the better or worse. Did a harsh word I said to someone in high school irrevocably harm them? Did a harsh word I heard irrevocably harm me? Did a kindness done to me or observed by me foster in me the desire to do the same for someone else? This latter is what I strive to do - live it forward.
Life has dealt me some blows. It is my goal to rise above these blows and cause someone else to have hope, love, and compassion. The only way I can do that is if I have hope, love, and compassion. Lately I've been lacking in hope and quite possibly compassion. Life has been difficult & sometimes, even when you strive to rise above, you can't get above the deep well of negative emotions. I'm crawling up by will, prayers, & my fingernails. I hope that in my struggles I've not brought anyone down. I wish only to rise above and help others to rise as well. God bless!
Friday, July 9, 2010
At work we also just got the 'official' word that furloughs are definitely going to be required for state employees. That means that we're going to be forced to take a certain number of days off without pay. Not to mention that the budget shortfall is making them mess with our retirement benefits. Of course, the private sector people think our benefits are so awesome... Well, they used to be, but now we're really just average with a little better retirement/insurance. However, our salaries are generally *lower* than other states as well as private sector jobs in our field. For instance, in Henderson, NV (or really almost anywhere, but here) if I had this same exact job, I'd be making at least $10,000 more per year. So in order to stay close to my family, I thought the benefits of state employment would out-weigh the lower pay. However, it looks like when its time for me to retire (if I make it that long) the retirement plan will no longer be in place. I think its set to run out of money in 2013.
So basically, since our legislators/governors/etc can't balance a budget & keep to it, us 'little people' are going to suffer. You can bet your bottom dollar that they're not going to suffer from this... When they're re-elected they'll throw out perfectly good office furniture & such to order new for themselves. They'll give themselves raises every year while our 1% increment has been denied to us for at least 2 years. They'll spend money wining & dining lobbyists & themselves, but they forget they're sometimes taking food from the tables of hard-working state employees (not to mention tax-payers). They'll give money to people who have no jobs - some through their own faults (drugs, convictions, etc) - but not help those who work for a living.
Aaaaaaaaaarrrrrrrrrrggggggggggggghhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!! This has been a *really* crappy week...
Wednesday, July 7, 2010
This time last year I was being strapped to an operating table without anesthetic for my biopsy. I could hear, feel (a lot more than I wanted), and smell the surgeon taking the lump out of my breast. I could feel Rachel (although I didn't know she was a she yet) swimming around in my tensed abdomen. I can still remember the disbelieving expression on the surgeon's face as he told me, mom & Andrew that the lump he removed was cancerous.
It probably doesn't make sense to everyone why I'm making such a big deal out of this. I mean, another month or two really isn't supposed to matter that much. However, I've got some bad feelings. I'm haunted by the fear that my body is going to betray me again & I'll have cancer (ovarian this time) if I don't hurry up and remove the appropriate tissue. I'm also worried that I'm going to lose my nerve to have this surgery. There's also the increased risk of becoming pregnant (and most likely miscarrying) during this dangerous time. I'm going to mourn the loss of my fertility, but there are definitely benefits to that loss - some of which only another woman with problems like mine can fully appreciate. Not to mention I was really looking forward to having my real foobs as opposed to these uncomfortable & ugly expanders. All in all, this surgery was about actually *improving* my life as much as it was about preventing cancer. Its also difficult for me with my obsessive-compulsions to get over the fact that my tidy schedule has been irrevocably ruined. I want to see the end of this cancer monster that has not left my mind since this day a year ago. I want to know I've done everything in my power to eliminate this monster from my life once & for all.
I was hoping that by this time this year I'd have all this behind me. I was working really hard to attain that goal. Sadly it didn't work. I'm still just as unsure about the future as I was then. I'm still as nervous, scared, and worked-up as I was last year. The biggest difference is that now I have a 7 month old Rachel instead of a 20 week embryonic Rachel. I just want to be finished with this scourge called cancer. I want my life to go back to normal. I just want to be normal.