Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Warning--may be graphic!

I don't want this blog to be sappy and sad but I may give too much information so just a little heads up. I stopped crying a few days ago in front of the UW medical center. I fell apart in front of everybody waiting outside for their cars--when we first heard how advanced my cancer is. I did not care. I wanted people to see a 55 year old woman crying hysterically that she didn't want to die--not yet anyway. Actually, I sort of could not control myself. But you know, we all pass from this life at some point--every single one of us.

The past few days have been a little rough in terms of physical invasions of my body. I was never a person to run to a doctor for every ache and pain. Perhaps, I should have or I may not be in this pickle. But I don't like to be messed with. I do not particulary like manicures, or hair appointments, or dentist appointments. I hate mammograms but I kept up with all of the necessary things and did not think I was too far off getting my first colonoscopy after I just turned 55. Well, water under the bridge now, that's for sure.

The last ten days, I have had a CT scan which was preliminary for a Pet Scan. Both times disgusting contrast dyes had to go up my colon and bladder. Contrast dyes had to be injected into an IV during all of these procedure. On Monday of this week, which happened to be our 35th Wedding Anniversary, I was having a temporary tube inserted into my colon to keep the tumor from blocking things while I have chemo which has been enormously painful. My anniversary dinner was ice chips. Yum! Dave stopped at Dicks on his way home and said it was the best Dicks he'd ever had. There was a slight complication with it so they kept me in the hospital overnight and ordered another CT scan. It will be fine. Then in reading this latest CT scan, they did not like a little spot near my bladder so off I went to get my bladder blown up yet again with a catheter and contrast dye. Again, all is fine on the bladder front but everytime one of these questions come up, you feel kind of terrified.

Finally, today, I went in for another procedure to put in a porto line. I keep wanting to call it my porto potty but no, it is a little entry place inserted under the skin of my shoulder so that the chemo can be more easily given.

My priest, who is originally from England, was here on Sunday after church. He was saying in the name of punishement, they used to do some horrific things to people down in the dungeons and torture rooms way back when. People's bodies can take a lot of beating up and still survive miraculously. (You gotta know my priest, a true Englishman.)

And finally, again, I thank you for all of your blessings, prayers, cards, letters, e-mails, food and flowers. I love flowers. We have received so much love from so many people and we are truly overwhelmed. The entire country of Chile is praying for me. Mothers are highly regarded in their culture and Lucas received an outpouring of emotion and love from his students and friends, mostly Roman Catholic. Dave and Lucas ate a fabulous copper river salmon dinner last night delivered by friends and we have chile they ate for lunch today. Although, I can't eat normally yet, it is wonderful for me to watch my family eat well. We have also received a number of inspiring stories of survivors. I cannot believe the number of people we know who have dealt with this disease. 35% of all people will have some form of cancer in their lifetimes.

By the way, nurses both male and female are truly the most wonderful people on this earth--right up their with teachers.

UPDATE: Yesterday was kind of a blur for me because of the sedation for my port thing. When I got up this morning, I wasn't sure what I had written on my blog and was a little scared to come and look. I had this vague memory of asking for a mirror during surgery to see what it looked like and I had to ask Dave if I dreamt it or if I really did ask for a mirror---LOL--in the OR. Evidently, I did and the nurses thought it was an excellent idea to have a mirror around for anyone else who might ask.