Saturday, September 29, 2007

Oops! I did it again...

JK. Well, first and foremost I have to apologize to my gf Selina. She did call me on my birthday, I just missed her call. She left a message right before 5pm, right around the time I was leaving work and the same time Sebastian called. My phone is really wierd like that. Sometimes I don't hear it ring if I'm on it. Anyway, she called me on my birthday. I don't know how I thought she would forget??? I guess I was just a bit emotional.

I've been trying to post, but just haven't had the time.

So on Friday, Sept. 21, I had my pre-op with Dr. Kutner. Of course she went over the usual stuff, but then there was something else that caught me by surprise. After they remove my lymph glands, they are going to biopsy them. If there is a lot of cancer in them, they will do radiation to that area, if there is not, no radiation is needed. I hope there is not a lot of cancer in there! After my appt with Dr. Kutner, I had to go admit to the hospital. While the lady was questioning me, she asked me if I had been in there recently. I said yes, I just had a surgery last month. She said she thought my information sounded familar! When it was time to go, I told her I hoped I didn't have to see her again. She just smiled, because she knew exactly what I meant.

Sunday, September 23 - Sebastian and I woke up early and went to San Francisco to go shopping for my birthday. We got there around 10am, and of course the stores don't open until 11am. So we walked around a bit, and checked out the LUSH store, which opened earlier than the other stores :) So of course, right at 11am, we went to Macys. I bought some boots, crocs, pants and comfy jammies. I need a lot of jammies for after surgery. Then we went over to H&M & I bought some sweaters and a pair of sunglasses. I wanted to go to the Coach store, but we ran of of time. Really :) I went home and took a nap, because I had to go the the Justin Timberlake concert that night!

So Reanna, Paige & I went to the concert, and I loved it! I really don't care much for JT, but his concert was really good! I think that Timbaland did an awesome mix, and I liked his little tribut to Aaliyah too. It was much worth the wait...

Thursday, September 20, 2007

It's My Birthday!

So today is my birthday. Yep, I'm a ripe old 35 years. I can't believe that I'm in my mid 30's. I'm not ready to be that old yet! Ok, so I'm not. I'm not. I'm not. I will be forever young. I refuse to get old.

So this week my surgery was moved up to Oct. 2nd. I called and tried to have it moved up to September, but Dr. Kutner was booked. And tomorrow is already my pre-op appointment. Wow, time is going by so fast. And I've got so much to do at work, I don't know if I'll be ready in time.

Yesterday I woke up to the most horrible allergies. I almost forgot what they were like. Yep, now I remember, just AWFUL. I went home from work early, took some Benadryl and just rested. I tried to sleep, but I couldn't. Can you believe that I didn't even eat dinner. I don't remember the last time I did that. Something must've been seriously wrong. So before bed I took another Benadryl, and I did sleep a bit better.

Since today is my birthday, of course friends & family call! I was shocked though, there were a few people who didn't even contact me. I know that there have been times where I didn't call, but I know I had a card in the mail. Oh well. I know that people are busy, and have their own lives to deal with, and I'm sure they don't around thinking of me all day, although it would be nice if they did :) Sophia took me out to lunch - we went to Chili's. Yum Yum. I had some Chicken something... and it was good. I really liked it. Then my mom called while at work. Oh yeah, the greatest husband, he left me flowers in a vase on the kitchen table with 2 cards. One from our dogs - it is the cutest thing - there is a picture of a boxer laying on a couch, and inside he wrote, "We promise not to get on your couches for your birthday" and he gave me another card promising me to take me shopping in SF this weekend. I like shopping, but he gets impatient. So it's a good/bad thing. If he goes, he will buy me nice things, but I have to hurry. If it's just me, he get's made if I spend to much, but I can take my time! So it's a double edged sword. I guess it's better if he takes me, guess then I don't get in trouble for spending too much $$. So before he left for work today, he gave me a kiss (he does every morning before he leaves) and told me happy birthday. When I woke up Reanna, she told me happy birthday too! I love her! Then my mom called and told me happy birthday. I chatted with Maria online for a few minutes, and she asked me what day my birthday was on, because she always forgets (she's getting old - ha ha) and she told me happy birthday too. But I was shocked that my dad did not call, and neither did Selina. Reanna was making fun of me saying maybe he'll call & tell me Happy Anniversary because he did call me in Feb. and tell me Happy Birthday on my Anniversary! He also sent me $$... lol... so maybe that is why, I already got my gift in February.

My allergies were not as bad as yesterday, so I didn't cancel dinner. We picked up Paige and went to the Fish Market. We met Lori, Bernie, Irene & Breanna there. The company was great, the food was nothing to brag about. I had heard a lot of good things about it there, and it was nothing to write home about. Well, it could be because of my allergies also. Food is just not the same. After dinner, we came over to our house and had some cake. Yummy. I love cake. I love ice cream too, but we didn't have any. Which is fine, because I'm lactose intolerent. So that just means I'll sleep better tonight.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Bark in the Park

Today was the annual Bark in the Park event held at a park at the corner of 16th & Williams. I really needed to get out and do something, as most of my weekends I have been home alone. I was glad that Sophia wanted to go, it got me out of the house. I left later than I wanted. I had to straighten up a bit, because Barbara came over to stay the night. So I had to wash the sheets, etc and make sure everything was nice & clean :) After that I dropped off Reanna at her dad's house, and went to the park. I was really dreading all the walking, and earlier in the morning I finally took off the remaining surgical tape Dr. Kutner put on last week after she ripped out my stitches! Now all that is left is a scar about 3 inches long going the length of my knee. But do I care. No. I actually like it. It is a part of me. A part of my new life. It is a reminder to me to live life - and to love it. I love my scar now - just as I love my life.

I knew I was going to spend most of my day walking, and I knew the parking there would be just horrid, as the park is in the middle of a residential area. So as I drive around and look for parking, I turning at the corner, and what do you know - there is handicapped parking! Woo hoo! I had gone the week before to DMV and got a 6 month placard. Yes, I was excited that I was not going to have to park far. So, right in I go. I wave to the police my placard, he makes me stop and roll down my window. He told me - "That is a hanging placard, hang it!" "OK, thanks officer" was my reply, but wtf? It specifically tells you - DO NOT DRIVE WITH PLACARD HANGING. Hello??? Did I miss something there? I was still DRIVING! Anyway, I park and Peanut & I get out of the car. At first he was scared, but right away he warmed up and he had a great time! Of course, I had no $$ on me. What a LOSER. I had to use my ATM to pay the $5 per dog fee. Shortley after getting there, Lori came up to me. What a surprise that was. I hadn't seen her since ... hmmm... I think it was the baptism for Christine's first baby. And she just had baby #2 - Dillon. Lori even showed me a picture. The proud auntie!

There were so many dogs there. It was really nice. I was glad to get out and do something. Midway through my time there, my knee did start hurting. I thought of bringing my cane, but I did not bring it because I had Peanut, and there was no way I can have my dog and cane at the same time. That would have been too hard. It was hard enough - I'm used to walking him, and stepping over his leash, etc. Today I had to keep turning around, etc because I can't bend my leg enough to step over it. I managed. I really want my knee to heal faster, so that when I have my next surgery, it will be easier. Sophia got there and she was so kind to buy some food tickets and got me some food! I got a snack first - ha ha. That's me! I still haven't changed. La Fondue was there, so I had chocolate covered strawberries. Yummy. By the time I was done, she was at the front of the line for food, so I got a pork pot sticker. I gave Peanut some, and he didn't eat it! Now that is a shocker. He eats everything. But it was funny watching him try to bury it! It got a bit windy, and I had a tank top on, so it was time to go. Later Sebastian got mad at me because the Dr. told me to avoid the sun. I wore sunscreen, but I don't remember her saying that to me. But then again, I have been to so many appointments, sometimes everything just runs together. Hence me blogging now. It's easier to do it while it is fresh on my mind. After Bark in the Park, I went to Selina's to pick up mine & Sophia's candles, then home to nap. I was tired. What a day out does to me!

When Sebastian got home, we just went and ate Taco Bell and then ran a few errands. I knew Barbara was coming over, and she had the key, but she was in front! She said the key wasn't working? We tried it, and it worked fine? I felt bad, she was out there for about 30 minutes! Oops. That'll teach me! Anyway, I showed her our new cars (well, we've had them, but she hadn't seen them yet) and she loved them. She said Sebastian should enter his car in car shows. He really isn't into that, but I think he should too. But then again, if he does, he may see something someone else has done, and there we go. Spending $$ on fixing up cars that are already nice. We do not have the kind of $$ it takes to make your car "better than the others out there." I just want him to enjoy it, which he does.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Leg Sock

So today I had an appointment to get a leg sock for after surgery. I will have to wear it for about 6 months to prevent my leg from swelling, and lymphedema. After they remove the lypmh nodes, I guess your leg can swell up. I can take the sock of to shower, etc, but for the most part, I will have to wear it all the time. Luckily I get two, one to wear, one to wash. So I picked one beige & one black. Since they didn't have my size already made, they had to measure me and they will be special made. I hope they are done by the time I have my surgery. After the appt, I met Kimberly at Valley Fair and we did a little shopping :-) I just bought a pair of pants & shorts to wear after surgery.

I also got an email back from Dr. Kutner. I asked her to move up the surgery date so that I can start my CASDI in Sept, instead of Oct. If I do that, I can get a lot more $$ per week. Hopefully she can find a cancellation in her schedule so that I can move it up! I hope I get a call from her on Monday!

Dinner was nice. I went to Fresh Choice with Reanna & Sebastian. It was very relaxing, and the place was not a madhouse! Sometimes it is pure chaos there - but tonight was really good. Then of course Reanna got a text from Heather & Justine. So she is out tonight, Friday, hanging out with them. I love it when my daughter is hanging out with friends. I like for her to be out with her friends, and sometimes I feel I push her to go out, and she doesn't want to because that is not her. (I have not done that in a long time!!!) I do love her for who she is, I just don't want her to miss out on doing fun things. I have learned to let her be her, and love her they way she is. I just got excited that she actually went out tonight. Normally she'll just pass. I hope she has a fun time and stays safe!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Last few months

Wow, the last few months have been quite overwhelming. Earlier this year I had a mole on my knee that was really bugging me. It would hurt all the time, and I would bump it on my desk at work and it would get really irritated. So finally, after Sebastian bugged me, I made an appt to get it removed. So on June 29th, I brought Reanna with me and Dr. Gifford removed my mole! I was so glad that it was finally gone!

On July 5th, Dr. Gifford called back to let me know that my mole had Melanoma. I didn't know what it was at first, but then he said skin cancer. He immediately told me that I had to meet with a surgeon and have a WLE (Wide Local Excision). Ok, so I panic a little, but not too much.

July 10th, I go and meet with Dr. Kutner, and she explains the Melanoma & surgery more than Dr. Gifford did. Oh no, this is not what I was expecting. My surgery is going to be 1.5 hours, and she is going to remove all of the skin/tissue around the knee area, where they removed my mole, and then a few lymph nodes also. The only thing is that we had a vacation scheduled in two weeks, so it was going to have to wait for that.

July 19th, I go and have my lab work & chest x-rays done. Normal procedure before surgery.

July 22 - Sebastian, me, Reanna, Paige and I drive our RV to Las Vegas! Oh yeah, we brought Peanut & Butter with us. My mom came by and we had a great time! We ate at Circus Circus, gambled a bit, and the girls played some games.
The next day we drove over the Hoover Dam and then walked around for a bit. Boy, was it hot! I do not know why - but for some dumb reason I did not wear sunscreen. So we had to hurry, because Dr. Kutner told me not to go outside without it! Yes, it was hard to hurry when it is that hot! Luckily, we got back to the RV, turned on the A/C and had a nice lunch. We had sandwiches and a Spinach dip I made before we left. It was GOOD! After lunch, we finished our drive to Williams KOA. The next morning, we took a cab to the Grand Canyon Railway. While there, we saw a wild west shoot out - pretty cool, it even sprinkled a bit during it. Then we took the train into the grand canyon. It was a beautiful day! There were a few clouds, but you could still see for miles! I must say that it is quite breath-taking there. I would love to go back someday! The next day we were supposed to relax at the RV park, but in the middle of the day, Sebastian decided we should drive home! So that is exactly what we did. We packed up and drove home. What a drive that was. Glad that we will never do that again (we sold our RV immediately after the trip).

August 6, 2007 - Sebastian & Reanna came with me to have my physical done. I had to have a physical before my surgery. I guess they called it a pre-op appt. The physical wasn't that bad, but I felt like I was there all day! I had to do that, do some more lab work, go meet with some other surgery people, pay for my surgery ($5) and sign paperwork, etc. Not fun at all.

August 12, 2007 - Maria's birthday. I called her, and she wasn't home. She had just left to a baby shower. I called again at 6pm (9pm her time) and there was no answer :( I was bummed that I did not get to tell her Happy Birthday! Anyway - Sebastian & I took Reanna & Ben to SF for the day. It was Reanna's birthday the next day, but I would be in surgery, so we went to the Wharf & Pier 39. We ate lunch at Pier 39, and Sebastian was making me mad. We didn't finish our fries, and he carried them with him for about an hour. He was trying to feed the pigeons, but they didn't want them. I told him not to do it, but since he saw them eating them in the restaurant, he thought they would want them. Sometimes he's a bit too stubborn! Anyway, after lunch we went to Ripley's Believe it or Not! There were a lot of interesting things in there! Then we walked around for an hour or two, and then made our way to the Wax Museum. I think Sebastian read EVERYTHING in there, because he took forever. We had to send Ben back in, because we thought maybe he got lost or something. After that, we went right next door to have dinner at the Rainforest Cafe. Reanna picked that out! We had a great time on her 17th Birthday!

August 13, 2007 - Reanna's Birthday & Surgery Day. WLE. I have to be at the hospital at 8:30 in the Nuclear Medicine Dept. The dr. gave me 4 shots in my knee, and boy were they painful! The radioactive dye should've shown up about 10 minutes later, but of course, NOT. Finally, 45 minutes later, it shows up. The dr comes back, marks my leg up, and sends me on my way. I make my way to the surgery center. The nurse asked me about 100 questions, then I had to go to the room and get changed (or should i say undressed) for surgery. A few minutes later, Sebastian shows up. He is there with me up until they wheel me away. While in surgery, he went and got my prescription. Right when I got out, he was right there. He was so helpful! I stayed for about 45 minutes and then he helped wheel me to the car, etc. My leg brace was big! I wasn't expecting it to be that big! I go home and just take my vicadin & rest. I really couldn't do much more. The next morning, I was extremely sick. I was throwing up my food, water, everything. All I did was sleep. I felt awful. I did not want to talk to anyone. Not even him :( I could not help it at all.

August 15, 2007 - I meet with Dr. Paek, my new dermatologist. Dr. Gifford referred me to her because she specializes in melanoma. I meet with her, and I have no clue why. She went over my whole body, and the remaining of my moles are fine. But she does not have any info for me because the results from my surgery are not back yet. All she told me was that I was minimum melanoma Stage II.

August 21, 2007 - Post Op follow up with Dr. Kutner. Good news - the surgery in my knee was successful. All of the cancer was removed. Bad news - the cancer spread to my lymph nodes, so they are going to have to do another surgery. Just what I didn't want to hear. She left the room for a few minutes, and I had tears in my eyes. I just could not help it. Sebastian was with me, and he was so kind and understanding. We went to the surgery scheduling area, and I scheduled the surgery for Oct. 5th. I got home and called Selina, I could not help but cry. She was so strong for me. I know she was upset, but she stayed so strong for me! That was what I needed. Then I called my dad. Once again, I started crying on the phone. And my dad too stayed strong. He told me he would help me in anyway he could. Barbara even got on the phone and said to call her anytime, she would come down and help in a heartbeat. That really meant a lot. The next call was my mom. This time I had to be strong. No more crying. I finally called her, and she was really upset, and she too, like everyone else, stayed strong.
August 29, 2007 - I met with Dr Kwong, an Oncologist that Dr Kutner referred me to. He gave me a lot of info, and treatment methods. He was very understanding, and offered to give me support group info. I learned that my Breslow's depth is 2.01mm and my Clark's level is IV.
August 30, 2007 - PET Scan. I went in, and of course it's freezing cold. Yep, I did not blow dry my hair, so that made it worse! I brought a Sudoku book, because I have 45 minutes to do nothing. The nurse tells me I can't read, do Sudoku, nothing! She turns the lights out and tells me to go to sleep. Luckily she gave me a blanket, but I was still cold with WET hair! Right when I fall asleep, she wakes me up and makes me go into the room with the scanner. I'm in the scanner for 45 minutes! It's not that bad. Guess I'm not claustrophobic! So after that, I go to work, then to meet Dr. Hickey, a PT. She gives me some exercises and measures me for a sock that I'm going to have to wear after my next surgery. On the drive home, I get a call from Dr. Kwong. Can you believe they already had the PET scan back! Earlier that day his assistant Linda (I wonder how I remembered her name?) called me and made an appt for me to get the results on Sept. 6th. It's the same day and he already was calling me? Well, he said he had good news and he did not want me to wait worrying for the next week. The cancer is confined to the lymph nodes in my left groin area. This is GREAT news. Oh yeah, I also have gall stones and a cyst on my right pelvis. LOL...

Sept. 05, 2007 - I go to Dr. Kutners office because the stitches in my knee are really starting to hurt! I need them removed. OMG - now that was painful! I did not know it would hurt so bad. She was pulling them out, and I was sliding off the bed! I wanted to scream SOO bad, but I refrained from screaming only because I did not want to scare patients that may have been in rooms near me. I can still remember how painful that was. Next time she said I'll have the dissolve able ones. Thank God!

Sept. 12, 2007 - I had my ob/gyn appt. Every 3 years is too much! Can't you just go once in your lifetime? Anyway, I had to go because of the cyst that was on my pelvis. My Dr. scheduled me for an ultrasound in Nov. to look at that, long after my surgery. Yep, I have to drink (4) 8 oz. glasses of water 1 hour before my appointment, and I can't pee. Like that's going to happen??? I can't believe they make pregnant ladies do this! Guess I should be glad I'm not pg.