It’s getting very close and I’m getting very antsy. Hospital called yesterday with pre-op instructions. NO food/drink after midnight, tonight. I’m already worried about food or, the absence of it.

I’ve requested that they add anti-nausea meds into IV so I won’t get so sick upon waking. (I also worry about waking, or not waking.) I remember, some time ago when I saw a medical show where the patient was given anesthesia and they started to cut him open and all the while he was wide awake, felt everything but couldn’t move. I really know that this is silly and I don’t know why my mind conjurs up these oddities.

Friends have been steadily visiting and asking how they could help best. It’s great to have this circle of friends embracing me with a big hug. They will clean house while I’m in the hospital, also shampoo carpet and work in the yard, trimming tree limbs and bushes. (That alone is worth going to the hospital.) Others will prepare soup.

Last night, when I woke with pain and took meds, I was so hoping that this was the very last time I’d feel it. That, in a few days, other than the soreness of the incision, I’m done. My son Cameron is offering for me to come to San Francisco after I’m healed as a Reward. I  am so excited. Also, making plans to go to Austria. It may be cutting it a little short with time. May have to postpone it until spring.

Professor Koebe wrote a nice note to wish me well. Still laments the fact that he can’t personally do this surgery. I am definitely going to go to Wuerzburg to see him again and Marion, his secretary.

My daughter called the other day and we had a nice, long talk. I know that her not being able to come is tough on her as well. Grandkids sending notes of love and support.

So. I’ll meet you all here, in a few days. Gung-ho and ready to roll.

I will put myself into the hands of our Lord.

Full circle and Dr. Two

I drove to Grand Junction myself, the other day for my appointment with Oncologist/GYN/Surgeon. (I had been there just two days prior for a CT scan. )This was, after all, ‘number Two’. This was the one, I had meant to see when Dr. Giggles insisted that I go to Denver, ‘because Dr. D. was ‘number one’.

We all know how that worked out and ended. Wasn’t too impressed by number ‘one’.

So, I was a bit curious how I would find this good doctor? Would she be brusk? Unfriendly? Arrogant? I sat in the treatment room and nurse did the vitals. Bloodpressure up a but it seems to match the surroundings.

After that, I sat there and waited. Nothing so boring as to sit and wait. Not even a magazine in there. My cell phone didn’t work in that little room. I took my checkbook out and tallied the sums. Not very exciting nor fun. Noticed how much I spend on medical bills and holistic stuff. I just heaved a sigh and put it behind me. Light knock on the door and in came Dr. ‘Two”. Nice smile, handshake. Then we discussed the lengthy tirade of my futile visits so far.

She examined me, then told me that she could not tell the source of the pain. There are many choices. But the CT scan was alright. No changes. No new growths, or movement from the old one. THAT is good news.

Here are my options: Try to manage pain ( not an option because it’s not managed.) Or: have a laparoscopy, go in, look and see’ then discuss further steps. (WHAT??? Go in twice? No. No.) third: Make a larger cut, so she can get her hand in (too much information!) to feel around. She said, they really can’t ‘see’ much therefor have to also ‘feel’. She wants to remove the cluster of small lymphnodes. They are no problem at the present but could be. Then, take out that piece they placed there over 10 years ago, for the adhesions to grow onto. (Should have been taken out and exchanged for a newer one, years ago. Maybe that’s the culprit??)

She will then place a new material in the abdominal cavity, the material being  similar to ‘Saran Wrap’ so adhesions can’t form. We will NOT touch the ‘errant lymphnode’ which is too overgrown with veines and blood tissue.

Surgery would take under two hours and I’d have to stay there 2-3 days.

So. Our number TWO doctor has no such hesitations to help me, as did doctor number One in Denver, or my GYN here, or, even worse Dr. Giggles with his arsenal of chemo.

I like her and I absolutely trust her to do her best for me. Finally. Someone to help alleviate this horrid pain. She asked me to think about it and then let her know. I was already pretty sure when I left, that I would do this surgery. She also assured me that we’re not doing chemo until ‘absolutely’ necessary. That was balm to my fearful soul.

I met with Carrie and Laurel, Gracie and a couple of their friends for lunch. Fun to have young, vibrant people around.

When I came home, I called Cameron to discuss these new options. He said they sounded good to him, too. He offered to come out again as well but I can’t ask so much for just a few days. Besides, sometimes we need a woman to do ‘womanly’ things.

Friday morning, I called Angela, her nurse and said I’m ready to set the date for ‘redecoration of the pelvis.’ She laughed and we settled on the 24th, July.

Now, that this is settled, once I have passed the unpleasantness of waking up right after, which is always so bad as the pain hits severely before they can give you anything. I remember this from every other surgery I’ve had but yet, this is not enough to deterr me.

Now, I’m setting up the friend rotation schedule, for after when I’m released. I so wish my daugher could’ve come to help me physically (she helps with the writing of my story with her brother)  but with the children and no money for the trip, it’s not possible. Cameron can’t come this time as he has to move. But, I think it’ll only be for a couple of days. Friends have offered right away to stay the night. Even from far away, like Boulder, my friend Rebecca has offered. Many, many well wishers and so much kindness.

Of course, sneaking into my brain are the thoughts that I usually have before any surgery. That very thought that woke me, early this morning before even the birds were up. I sure hope I will wake up. What if I don’t?? Well, I wouldn’t know about it but the (even remote) possibility makes me sad with missing my children, grand kids and friends already. And then, there’s my little buddy.

I better push all that out of the way and concentrate instead on my trip this fall. I’ve seen some pictures of ‘Meteora’ and ‘Valley of the fog’, in Greece. I really, really would like to go there. But, I speak no Greek, ‘that’s Greek to me,’ ha (even less than Spanish!) So. I better stick with Austria. Just the thought that I could plan and actually go gives me new vigor. A very nice Facebook friend, from Austria, who’s a singer- (You Tube-Peter Martell) wrote the nicest comment. He told me that when he recorded ‘Amazing Grace’ he was thingking of me and praying that I’d find relief soon and asked the Lord to listen. Touched me to tears. Also said, when I come to Austria, he and his lady friend would sure show me around and help me find reasonably priced rooms.

It seems a long time now, since I’ve started this ‘cancer-health-journey, to now. I told my friends how grateful I am for their loving, never wavering support. For listening to my woes and tirades. For coming and helping, no matter how big or little the problem. In this, especially my ‘favorite Mike’. My son, who took a big chunk out of his life and time, to come and help me find treatment. My friends, Monika and Inge, who always take me for tests. Others who bring food, laughter warmth. Strangers, who, after reading the blog have called or written e-mails with suggestions and links to doctors and or Naturopathics. Others, who have become new friends and presented me with a Pedicure. Others again, bring vegetables, soup, cage free eggs etc. Or, bring the dogs when I had a particular low day, to cheer me up.

(I’d written an e-mail to recommended Naturopathic doctor in New York but have never received an answer). Never again heard from that woman Dr. in Boulder. That 15 min phone call cost me $75.00.

So. Next week, I will pack my bag. (They have T.V. computers in the room). I can wear my own PJ’s. Hopefully, this will be my last surgery. I sure would like to have a few years without pain or some other health problem. As long as the cancer behaves, I’m good to go. I  will write after surgery, as soon as I’m able.

Thank you all. Hugs all around.

Oh, I want to mention that it rained yesterday. A true ‘Gully-washer’. Everything looks brigher, greener and grass is finally green and not brown. Birds are singing and the scent of fresh washed air is coming in through the open windows, carried by a light breeze. Great Sunday morning. Thank you GOD.


Rain, finally and new Doc

After the long, long dry conditions and the horrible fires in our beautiful state, finally it rained. Yesterday, thunder crashed and lightening all over but with it blessed rain. I ran outside to take pictures as the earth opened to receive the long awaited rain. Parched as it was, water ran in thick and heavy rivulets down the street. A cooler day is here and all week our Monsoon season.

Fourth of July was subdued due to all the people, houses and forests lost. Also, no fireworks as it would have ignited the rest of the state. Some people actually were complaining about that. Fools.

On Tuesday, (my friends) Inge and Monika and I, set out for my appointment with Oncologist. We chatted and looked out at the dusty, dry fields. Almost in Grand Junction, each time we turned on the air conditioner the car sputtered and so the trouble began. It was a sweltering 102F and no air. We pulled over, let it rest, started again. With its last power we pulled into the parking lot where it promptly died. But, we were there.

I explained to Dr. D. my whole, painful dilemma. She examined me and pounded front and back checking and after all that we agreed to have the OB/GYN Oncologist/Surgeon have a ‘look-see’.  Well, I’m certainly hoping that once, on this fact finding mission, if she sees the problem and it is adhesions, she will snip it on her way out.

I really like Dr. D., who is competent and compassionate. She told me she would talk to surgeon herself and then that office will call to set up appointment. Sure enough, Thursday they called. I am impressed with the speed and efficiency of taking care what they promise.

I am trying hard to get my excitement back for healthy living. Due to this pain and lack of appetite, I was eating other foods as well. Not too far away from my ‘lifestyle’ but yet enough to make me feel guilty. After a stern talking to (myself) I am now back on track. Neighbors were grilling BBQ and that smell nearly drove me off the edge. I just wanted to run over there, grab that piece of steak (or chicken) and run off. HA. But, I did no such thing!!

Friends come by and spend some time. Also, taking me out to dinner. I had a nephew and his wife and their wonderful son, Zane, come visit. I have not seen nephew in 30+ years. It was a nice visit. I cooked Schnitzel and several salads and we had a great dinner.

When the hot water heater broke and water was flooding the basement, the mice came up. I am so squeamish when it comes to those critters. (..and snakes… and spiders.) But, I couldn’t let them run free and ruin my sleep, running over things. I had bought humane traps. But, could never tell if it really worked. Had my ‘favorite Mike’ come over (husband of a friend of mine) who repairs, fixes and in other ways is very helpful and kind. His 8 yr old son comes with him and takes out the traps with carcass and re-sets them!! I feel only slightly embarrassed that he can do this and I can’t. I think, we are successful and for the last two nights, I slept very well. Of course, that could also be due to the new, colorful Marijuanan candy. There are soooo many different edible things to choose from. Yesterday, when it was cooler I also walked for 45 min.

My daughter is busy trying to keep her children entertained for the summer and work at the same time. She lives far away and won’t be able to come. Cameron is on business in Venezuela.

I suppose my friends will take me to the hospital and bring me home and take care of me for a few days. I plan to start hiking again, once the damn pain is gone. I told Dr. D. I need to be all improved by mid September as I have plans.

I will be so very glad when my ‘whiney’ season is over and I can concentrate on the ‘cancer’ instead. So far it’s behaving and I really am thankful because I don’t think I could handle both.

I also want to thank all of you for the kind messages, suggestions, comments and support from ‘you’ out there. Most of you I don’t know but am really humbled by so much kindness. THANK you.