Friday, September 30, 2011

And the treatment is Cyberknife!

Yeah - I don't have to do chemo - YEAH! I will fill you in more when I do. My oncologist say that the cyberknife guys were "salivating" over wanting to treat me - so, hey, what is a girl to do!?!?!?! I meet with them on Wednesday the 5th....more to come.....Happy weekend, Ang

Monday, September 26, 2011

Wyoming Wedding Weekend

The last time I posted, I didn't mention that I was getting on a plane the next day to go to Sheridan, Wyoming for a wedding. I know - Sheridan - where the heck is Sheridan?!?!?! Get a map - no one just knows where that is unless you are from there. One of my college roommates is from there and lives there now. I have never had a reason to go there, pass through, etc. but a wedding is a pretty important event, so I thought, "Now, is the time." So, off I went with another college girlfriend. I didn't have much time to process or change gears, so I told my friends that we were NOT talking about it and definitely NOT telling the bride. It was HER weekend. We flew to Billings and drove down to Sheridan blowing into town just in time for a shower for Lisa (the bride) which was GREAT timing. I met so many people that I had heard about, but never seen. I saw her Mom who I hadn't seen in 20 years and finally met her "puppy", 92 pound Otis. We laughed, told stories, ate and had a really good time. All Lisa could say was, "This is so weird being on this side of stuff." Meaning she ain't never been the Bride. Lisa has such positive energy; a full of life sort of person. Nothing really ever gets her down and, quite frankly, even if it does, she processes through it so quickly with such perspective you hardly notice her doing it. The next day we decorated for the rehearsal dinner which was a Luau (something I always think of when I think of Wyoming). It was 15 miles out of town in the thriving metropolis of Story, WY population 848 which was more than Banner which had 40 people. I was fine until the first drive out there. See, driving in Wyoming is like driving through an animal refuge 24/7. We had to stop to let a flock of turkey cross the road and there were several deer, raccoons, and other unable to identify carcasses on the side of the road. I was fine until someone hit a deer on the way to rehearsal dinner. Some of you may remember that Grant and I have a problem with skidding through herds of deer in Montana (totalling a vehicle), hitting dear in Eastern Washington and even catapulting a deer on the way back from Anacortes, WA (totalling another vehicle!). After that, I was on high alert and followed any car, going any speed, as long as they had a bull bar. My poor girlfriend, Michelle, who was with me, just rolled her eyes. Saturday we went out to a Eaton's Dude Ranch (oldest in the States), for a "FUN RUN" that by description didn't sound like fun. Michelle got out of running because we were late. Apparently, when getting directions you have to ask what the definition of a "T" in the road is because, Hand to GOD, that was a "Y". Also, the term, "where the road ends" can mean when it changes to a different Highway number, NOT from concrete to gravel. I had a tough time with North too because, I couldn't tell where the sun came up. The sky all looked the same. No mountains or water for reference - they were all mountains and no water!!! Next time, I am buying the GPS and renting a car with a BULL BAR! We then "ran" back to get ready and out for the wedding. This unfortunately is when I had my episode (bowel). I got through the wedding which was in the woods (but luckily facilities were near by), but I was driven home, tucked into bed and left to rest until I got it together before the reception. I didn't miss anything, just realized that I probably did too much and my colon can't do all that. Imagine me being me and draggin my colon along - quite a picture right? The reception was in barn - cleanest barn I had ever seen - with the "Dawg" house next door with the Nebraska/Wyoming game on. We lit sky lanterns into the sky (during a burn ban) and everyone was asking me if this was legal. I was like, "Yes, but if it isn't, we are doing it anyway, so ENJOY!" The band was all country, and I am surprised at how many of the songs I knew! We ended the night helping Otis, yep, the dog, get home and spent the morning with Lisa's family for breakfast. Wow, they can make breakfast! I stuffed my bag full of all the boy treasures of Cowboy Country - Pop Pistols, real cowboy rope, and a real dude ranch horse shoe and back to Billings we went. They put my bag through the x-ray machine - can you imagine what that looked like???? Guns, rope and a big metal dirty horse shoe. No wonder it went through twice! I am surprised I didn't have to open it. Like Michelle says, "I don't feel any safer with them." When I got home, the boys asked if they were now real cowboys now and I say, "For sure! You got the rope!" I have been roped, lassoed, and tied. I had a very nice evening and then it started to sink in......emails were returned and I learned that Hank spoke with Grant on Friday night (who decided not to tell me until this morning - good man), that my lung surgeon says surgery is not the best option because the my spots are so small. Now, we are onto radiation oncology for cyperknife...and again, I am one step closer to chemo. I cried because I don't want to be one step closer to chemo and I think back to the weekend where I was making plans to go back to Wyoming with my boys for camping, fishing, dude ranching, and ATV fun not ever believing that I would not be there. It is nice to think that way sometimes....if only for a moment. Love, Ang

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Good news is that

I found my dill weed. Bad news is that I didn't get a clean scan. I have three small spots in my left lung that are not showing up on the PET scan, but are showing up on the CT which is a bit mysterious. I meet with my oncolgist next Thursday to discuss options. My cancer is back. I got six weeks off. More when I know it. I am numb. Love, Ang

Monday, September 19, 2011

Scan tomorrow

Nothing is "wrong", but this is my final clearance scan. I was supposed to do it right after my last treatment, but that was August and, remember, I took August off. So, when I called on August 30th to schedule, I could not get in until tomorrow, the 20th. Clearly, I have hit the "B" priority list. Sometimes that is a GOOD thing. Here is the think you are handling everything so well, you are confident that you will have a clean scan, you have it all together, you are back and, then, like in my case, you can't find the dried dill weed that you JUST bought at the grocery store and you loose it. My cousin's son is dead, my chemo friend is BACK in chemo, I have another friend that is having major issues right now, and then, I have a scan and will I, once again, be a suck on the side of the earth? Yeah...I was a hot mess. Poor Grant didn't see it coming and I think really thought it was about dill weed. My evening ended reading to Nolan in bed and falling asleep with him. Man that kid moves a lot! I am better today, probably because I had no sleep and I haven't eaten a carb all day for prep, so I don't have the energy to be a hot mess. I will be okay either way - I am just scared. It is like PTSD....and it stinks! Love, Ang

Friday, September 16, 2011

I just got home from the second of

three funerals that my cousin and her family have to attend. She and I are cousins by marriage, so we have no blood relation, but we have known each other for something like 28 years. We were born days from one another and both are Geminis. We have a lot in common, and as with my blood relation girl cousin, she is stunning, perfectly thin, and I pale in both of their shadows. (I come from good stock, but my Dad screwed me up!) But, like both of these cousins, they are some of my greatest fans, and love me genuinely. I was at my Aunt's house for canning peaches and pears last weekend. I got there on Friday and that is when they found my cousin's eldest son. He had died under a tree as a result of a motorcycle accident. 22 years old. Navy Man. I comforted my Aunt and Uncle. I offered my help, but really all I could do is can peaches - they weren't getting any greener and my Aunt was busy. So, I did. They went to her side. I didn't feel it was appropriate for me to go so soon. I took care of the dog, made my Uncle a sandwich, and I didn't cry. I was busy....and numb. Young, healthy, just coming into his own, and poof, he is gone. I really didn't cry until I came home and saw Grant. A horrible accident. One could blame the bike, one could blame the road, but really there is nothing to blame. It is just a horrible accident and, unfortunately, the horrible accident happen to him. I saw her at the service at Mt. Tahoma National Cemetery. I didn't feel like I should interrupt her - there was so much family. So, I didn't and it wasn't until she was in the car to leave that she glanced up and saw me. She pointed directly to me and said, "You. I want to see you." She asked that I attend the gathering afterward, and, of course, I said, "If you want me there, I will." "I do." "Okay." I love her. I really do. I know that I am only the step, but we are family. At the reception, we shared words that only moms and family can share. We cried and we laughed and I was so proud of the strength and the grace that she had for all this. I pray for her to get through this, but how do you do that? How? So, as I came home with one of the bouquets because they didn't have enough space in the family's car, I initially wanted to give them to someone...anyone....but when I tried, I couldn't and for a brief moment, I felt peace. He was still here, in the flowers, in the air, comforting his Mom, Dad, and Sister. Keep the flowers and smile....... Love, Ang P.S. For those of my sick friends (which accounts for most of them), yes, my house is sparkling clean, I have canned pears, pickles, dilly beans, and called family friends for the recipes and how the canned the soup they brought me when I was sick. IT IS HOW I MOURN!!!! Logical? No. Productive? EXTREMELY!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Labor Day Weekend

Last weekend, I ate a peach and the juice smooshed out the sides of my mouth, I cuddled with the kids in the morning with, of course, the smell behind the ears, I got bruised by my son, I ate three meals without substituting one with liquid shake, I ran through the sprinkler, I cleaned up the garage, I visited with neighbors, and I painted the mail kiosk in our neighborhood. As my neighbor says, "A healthy Angie is a busy Angie." It was Labor Day Weekend after all! Love, Ang