Friday, February 26, 2010

Great News....

After a whirlwind month which included going to Kauai with our friends and family (only 17 of us this time), proposals that we won and lost, and working working working, I saw my Oncologist yesterday. When I first got there I was fine, no worries, and then as I sat to wait for my blood draw, an older gentleman was confused by the lab. When you get your blood drawn at our lab (which is conveniently located across the lobby from the oncologist), they ask you, "Arm or port?" He was confused, so I asked his wife (who was in a wheel chair) if she has a port and showed her mine. Her face was very disfigured. It was swollen with skin graphs, but she was able to speak quite well. So, I answered for her husband and explained to him what it was. "Thank God we haven't had to do that!" he exclaimed. I figured he thought it was like the old kind where a piece hung out of you, so I showed him mine and told him a little about it. Then, the woman next to me asked me how long I had had mine. I told her and she said, "If you get really lucky, you get a power port." Power ports are like the Cadillac of all ports. I was like, "NO WAY - those are cool!" She said, "They are." And so the woman with the face said, "So, I want one of those?" We both said, "No. YES. NO!" We chaTted for a while, swapped stories, and laughed a bit, She was really sweet. The nurses convinced me to flush my port and I chatted them for a while. Then, the oncology nurse came to get me which was a good thing because I can't be strong forever - if I am there for too long I get the hibbie gibbies (SP!) We talked about mutual friends and how one died that "wasn't supposed to" and I said, "I just gave up asking why. It hardly seems worth it. I don't know why I am still here....I guess I just got lucky with it stabilized and became operable." She looked at me and said, "Ang, there is a reason you are here.....there is just a reason. Enough said." I am thinking like, "So, what is it????", but I couldn't get the words out without tearing up. My grief was for the past patients, not for me. Just then, my oncologist walked in. We chatted for a while about how I am tired, but from only good things, about my other docs, about Kauai, about normal stuff and then he said, "Have you had a scan?" I was like, "Dude, that is not until next month, so NO." He smiled and said as he was examining me, "Well, I think you might like what I have to tell you." By this time, my nerves were getting the best of me and as a defense, I said, "You got a reason why I am still alive????" Looking at me like I am the nut I am, he said, "No, but I do think that you are doing so well that we don't need to do a scan next month. How about a chest X-ray next month and a scan in three months? AND, you only have to come see me every other month. I will miss you greatly, but I think it is the right thing to do." About half way through this new protocol, I looked at the floor and exhaled. I said, after he was done, "You know, I could get used to this." He put his hand on my back and said, "I could too." So, with a hug, we said the stuff people say when they have been down this ridiculous road together. I got dressed, made my appointments, and GOT THE HELL OUT OF THERE. I have never gotten this far in this journey and I remember when I went into remission the first time, my oncologist was like, "And you HAVE to come in every month, and you HAVE to get scans every quarter, and you HAVE to....etc. etc. etc." And, so it has been......until now. A little more freedom which oddly enough is scary too, but not so scary that I ain't taking it with BOTH HANDS AND RUNNING WITH IT. Happy Friday, Ang

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Mason, Grant, and Nolan

I am posting about my boys today. Today I went on a field trip with Mason to Chinatown. This is the second field trip that I have been on with Mason. He has had a lot of them, but this is the second one I have been on. The first was when I was first diagnosed and I quickly found out that was not something I could easily do. So, it was been off the "to do" list for three years. He is so used to telling me what happened and whose Mommy took care of him. He tells me, in great detail, who misbehaved, and who didn't which always includes him. But today, he didn't have to, because I was his helper. Now, for most people, you would think, "Wow, things are really back to normal" and they are, but this is a kid that when I get sick with a cold and mistakenly say, "Mommy doesn't feel so hot today......" he jumps into action and starts putting things away and "helping" with lunch and putting things in the frig and says, "Don't worry Mommy, I will take care of you and, when you die, I will take care of Daddy and Nolan." Sometimes he asks me when I am going to die and I explain that I may not, we just don't know, but I don't want him to worry about it because I am healthy now and NOW is what matters. I tell him that he will NOT be responsible for everyone and that he is just a kid.....but it doesn't matter what I say, he is just that type of boy. Such a burden. We talk about now, we talk about Tinkerbell, we talk about heaven, and then, when there is nothing left to say, I just hug him and kiss him until the tears stop and he laughs so hard he can't talk anymore. Now, Grant....well, you know, Grant has been working in his new business, and he is doing well. We aren't rolling in any money, but he is busy, working, and he even invoiced a client. So, things are going in the right direction. I am amazed at how happy he is and I am a little bit in awe of how talented he his. His writing is really good, but you know, it is about cleaning dirt. HOWEVER, he is not allowed in Kinko's by himself EVER AGAIN. I knew this would happen. See, he has NEVER worked without a word possessor, CAD guy, receptionist, etc. etc. etc. and it is starting to show. So, I edit (no proof reading - you all know I am a horrid proof reader - I am good at formatting), I make it look pretty, and I get it out. I think he thought he could go to Kinkos, have it copied, bound, and sent by FedEx in 30 mins. No. By the time I got there....well, let's just say, I told him leave. He looked something like a deer in the headlights (I know what that is since Grant is like an expert at hitting deer, but he misses Moose) and a lost puppy. For me, that part of the project is easy, but it takes focus, respect, and time. So, he ran to his next meeting and I focused on the project. Run home, fix the formatting he screwed up, go to Kinko's in Kent, find out they suck, go to Kinko's in Tukwila which is amazing, copy test, review, decide, copy, bind, research paper while they are binding, take it to my Fed Ex Office that I know will get it there, call Mike for a the contact phone number (because Grant is in a meeting), get it, send it, tell a story about the new show "Boss something" and go home. 2.5 hours. Done. He calls about an hour later and says, "So, how it is going? Oh, it is done? All four copies? To the right person? I have to call Mike and tell him. It will be there by noon right?" I reply with, "It's done, yes, yes, already done, yes." And he exhales, "Thanks." Oh, my Grant. (Smile) And, then there is Nolan. Well, Nolan is still Nolan. Self absorbed. Gonna turn three and keeps telling anyone that ticks him off (including me) that they are not coming to his birthday and they don't get cake. Yeah, I know. I just respond with, "If I ain't coming, you ain't havin' a party." Nolan looks at his Dad. He responds with, "What she said." We are GREAT parents. ;) So, here is my message.......while things are crazy and complicated, I still feel my eyes fill up with tears of appreciation that I am the one the "save the day", that can explain to Mason that he is still a kid, and that puts Nolan in his place. Yeah me. Love, Ang