Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Hey, look!   A second blog posting in less than three months!  Ha ha.

Just wanted to wish all a HAPPY and SAFE Thanksgiving   The weather is going to be rather nasty today and tonight, so if you are careful!

We got the trees in the yard trimmed and several cedars cut down yesterday.  Which meant that the dogs were all wound up...most of the day.  There were two guys and big pieces of loud equipment roaming around the premises and they were SURE that we would all be they made me aware of every movement out there.

This would have been fine, if I wasn't on the phone for about three hours, with the people from Apple Care, trying to get my laptop straightened out.  The problem was such that a supervisor (who had a nasty cold and was irritated right from the start) had to get on the line with me.  In between the sound of chain saws and dogs barking hysterically, and the guy's snuffing, snarking, coughing  and blowing his nose, we got most of it straightened out.  What an ordeal!   I want to point out that I talked with three different people before I got the supervisor and all of them were so pleasant to talk to...and then he came along.  I could feel myself getting sucked into his negative vortex, but I really needed to get the computer working right.  So, I worked really hard to jolly him along, and was successful.  

I treated him the way he should have been treating me.  Funny how that happens more and more lately.

Yesterday I was miserable, physically.  Everything was aching and sore.  My mouth has sores in it from the medicine (I guess I am getting the clinical trial drug...a placebo wouldn't make these kind of sores) and my throat was hurting.  My side/kidney still hurt, my back hurt, I was just miserable.  Then the neighbors decide to burn up a huge pile of junk from the storms and the smoke rushed into our yard and stayed there.  I couldn't take a full breath without coughing and I could feel the congestion in my chest. 

It was hard to figure out if I was having reactions to the chemo drugs, a cold/allergy attack, or residual from the excessive workout at the gym on Sunday...or all three.

I took Zyrtek D last night and felt better.  I called the neighbor who likes to burn things and asked him to try to control the smoke, he apologized.  I do have a call in to the nurse at Women and Infant's but I doubt I'll be here when they finally call back.  Good thing I have Kathleen at Dr. Galan's office if I REALLY had a problem!

Okay, I'm off to take a shower, pick up my pies, see my therapist, pick up Sandy at work and then down we go to Jean's for Thanksgiving.

Have a great holiday!   Remember, no fighting with family's so NOT WORTH IT!


Monday, November 21, 2011

So, I went for my first chemo last Thursday and it really was a piece of cake.  I know now that I can drive myself up and back no problem.  This is a good thing for Sandy, who can't always take off from work to do this.

Jean, Sandy, Nami and I went up Thursday.  Sandy came in with me and got me settled in, then took Jean and Nami down to Ocean State Animal Hospital to meet with the it was Oncology day in our families.

Nami has a tumor on her heart and they are starting her on chemo (at home)...she takes pills like I do.  The doctor doesn't know if it's a slow growing tumor or not.  We will find out in three months when she goes back and they do imaging again.  He said she is in no pain, which is a relief.

I am on the first unit now for my infusions.  I have a new nurse,'s really something like Yvoningle or something like that.  She is very competent and thorough....just what I like.  I will have "Little Anne-Marie" for a nurse most of the time, but will have Yvonne when AM isn't on duty.  I love it.

It took a LOOOOOOOOOOONG time for me to get one med.  I didn't need premeds, which is what used to get me all woozy and sick feeling (and what prevented me from driving myself), but it took FOREVER to get the Avastin from the main pharmacy at the hospital.  My appt was for 11:30, I got into the room earlier than that and I didn't start getting my infusion until about 1:30!  Yvonne was more upset than I was about the time.

I was having fun chatting with the women who shared the room with me, first a woman with breast cancer, and her sister--who owns a package store.  We chatted about "Skinny Girl" products and had some laughs.

Then she left and I was alone for awhile, then another woman came in with her husband.  They looked familiar and it turns out they are from Norwich and they know Briege Kavanaugh, our old neighbor!  The woman, Mary, has ovarian cancer also, her CA 125 is at 900 now, which made me grateful for my measly 30 score!   She has a great attitude and will do well.  She gets a biologic agent like I do, but had to have some premeds.  Maybe we can commute together sometime down the road.

Her daughter came down from Westwood to visit and brought goodies from Whole Foods.  It was nice chatting with them...made the time go by fast.

My next appointment is Dec 1st at 8:30 in the AM.   I was supposed to work that day at 12:15, but I canceled that as I don't know how long it will take for them to get the meds hung.  Also, driving from Providence to Farmington is not the easiest of best that I cancel out.  Think I will look for Trader Joe's in Warwick on my way home.

I am now taking two pills a day in the morning, on an empty stomach.  I have to be careful not to touch the pills, which are called Everolimus.  I have to drink a whole glass of water with the pills and have to rinse my mouth out thoroughly after taking them.  They do cause sores in the mouth, which I now have because I forgot to rinse a couple of days.  I have a prescription for magic mouthwash being filled so that should help. 

Speaking of Trader Joe's....on Charmine's recommendation I bought their pizza dough and sauce.  I made pizzas for Sandy and Jean (and Carol) this weekend, using fresh tomatoes and fresh mozzarella.  I will never make pizzas my "old way" again!  

I have been trying to eat better, incorporating lots of spinach and red onions, in particular, into my diet.  Dr. Oz says that research shows that they are good for fighting ovarian cancer.   I'm also exercising more.  I go to the gym and on the "off days" walk the dogs, do house work, haul stuff in the yard, etc.   I will be setting up my first workout with the personal trainer within the next week.  Let's DO THIS! 

Of course, I had to go and overdo it Sunday at the gym.  I did the treadmill on fat burn for 20 minutes,  no problem, that's a nice, slow and steady pace.  Then I did the Fitness Test on the Stairmaster and messed up my data input after a few minutes, so I just hit Workout 1 and did that for five minutes...that alone added up to 10 flights of stairs...I have NO idea how many flights I walked while doing the fitness test!   At least another five!  Today I'm paying for legs, back and arms ache.  I'll go tomorrow and just take it easy...treadmill, bike, etc.  No stairs.

Been working too....just one more session of doing the physical exams for the Yale students, next up I have to be the smoker who wants to quit.  This is hard for me...I HATE saying that I smoke!  Even though it's not true, I can't stand it.  Takes real acting on my part!  Ha ha!

Thanksgiving happens twice for us this week, Wednesday night at Jean's with Taylor and Andrew and Ryan...and Deb and Neil.  We were together last year too and had a blast.  On Thursday Sandy and I will go up to Rhonda's in Pomfret, with Roxie and the kids.  We love to spend time with them.  I think this is the third year in a row I've gone to Rhonda's.  Great food, great company, we play games and have a wonderful time.  I have to remember to load Cranium and other games into the car.  Rhonda has "Dance Dance Revolution" which I have been wanting to try.  I would love to have that here at home.

Watching the Huskies beat Stanford tonight, good win.  They won, which is good, and they made a lot of mistakes, which is also good--Geno will have a field day pushing them in practice.  I love the new kids already...especially that Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis, who will be referred to as KML from now on in this blog. 

Now I'm watching the Patriots and texting with Katie, who is watching in Arizona.  This is our "tradition"...we text during the games.  It's fun.

Coming up on the horizon...Mary McKay's retirement party.  I'm speaking and have no idea what I will say...I'll think of something crazy I'm sure.

Okay...early day tomorrow.  The guys are coming to cut down and trim trees out back....they will be here at 7:30!  OUCH!   I have to get to bed!

Happy Thanksgiving!