Archive for September, 2009

It isn’t even October yet…

1.  And the pink ribbons are out.  Breast Cancer Awareness month can be a pretty sensitive topic for many survivors.  For some of us, it brings back the horror of the cancer ordeal.  For others, it feels like exploitation.  Here’s my take on it.  Large corporations donate a portion of their proceeds to Breast Cancer Research.  Which is good.  And we get a product with a pink ribbon on it reminding us that we are helping.  Which is also good.  But if you really want to make your money count, think about donating directly to Komen.  Or the American Cancer Society.  Edited to add: maybe not the American Cancer Society.  Read this and decide. That way ALL of the money goes to research.  And YOU get the tax break.  Not the big companies.  I’m not saying to stop buying yogurt with pink lids (though have you checked out how much high fructose corn syrup is in those babies?  No wonder they taste like dessert!)  If you want to wear a ribbon to remember someone or show support for someone.  You go right ahead.  Just don’t buy the Breast Cancer Kitchenaid.  (Unless you REALLY love pink.  Then it’s ok.)

2.  And the Halloween stuff has been out since the school supplies went on clearance.  I am resisting buying candy early.  I did, however, cave and get the kiddos their costumes.  So here it is.  A little Halloween preview.

I believe there is a FFFFFTT noise coming from J in this picture.  Imaginary adamantium claws, no doubt.

I believe there is a FFFFFTT noise coming from J in this picture. Imaginary adamantium claws, no doubt.

3.  BTW.  I did buy breast cancer awareness cheese today.  But it was cheaper than the regular cheese.   And the actual cheese wasn’t pink.  Grins.


On the eve of her memorial.

It’s 11:25 pm EST and I’m still wide awake due to the time difference, looking through old pictures on my Mom’s computer.  And I found it.  The picture I wanted to post when she died.

17 years old here, I think.


She was 17 years old, I think.  🙂

While I was perusing I found this one of my Dad.  Shocking how much my son looks like him. 

pat and richard

Sorely lacking the funny.

Plastic surgeon sent me to an infectious disease specialist today.  There is a red spot on frankenlefty.  They’re putting me back on Bactrim (started Levaquin yesterday) but I can tell they’re trying to prepare me.  I think there’s a good chance frankenlefty’s going to fail.

I can’t find anything funny to say about that.

But give me a couple days.

Drainless with a side of itchy

Sorry to keep some of you in suspense about my drain.  I’m sure much sleep was lost over it.  (I wonder if someone will ever design a sarcasm font.  It would be helpful.)  They took it out on Monday.

In fact, I’m full of all kinds of good news this week:

1. Drain is gone

2.  Infection is looking better, so I might get to do a one stage surgery next time instead of two (short version: no expanders, straight to implants)

3.  For better or for worse, I’ve reached my out of pocket expenses for the year so everything from now til the end of December is 100% covered.  I’m really hoping to get that one stage surgery in under the wire.

4.  I was told I have a beautiful colon.  How many people can say that?

5.  I don’t have to drink Gatorade with Miralax for 10 years (maybe 5 with my cancer history).  It’s awful.  I mean really awful.  Lemon lime Gatorade is bad enough but the Miralax turns it into a syrupy mess that just horrid to swallow.

I do itch though.  On the frankenlefty side.  Which is so weird, because I have no feeling there.  I actually run into things with my frankenboob and can’t feel a darn thing.  Shut it in the car door.  Really, I did.  Nothing.  Except the itchiness.  That I can’t scratch.  Because there’s no feeling there.  It would be funny if it weren’t happening to me.  😛

Ok.  It’s a little bit funny.


After last weeks meeting with the plastic surgeon, I was resigned to the fact that my drain was going to be with me for some time.  So I named it Alfie.  Mostly because I was watching the movie Alfie on tv (the new one with Jude Law)  (and isn’t he pretty by the way?)  But just like fickle Alfie in the movie, my drain decided also have commitment issues.

Last night I noticed that the stitches which hold my drain in had broken free and my drain was starting to come out on its own.  Basically this makes a pretty inconsistent seal which causes the drain to leak where it’s attached to me.  (Awesome.)  I called the doctor and he said I could either take it out on my own (yikes) or wait until Monday.  So I’ve now taped the tubing so it can’t work it’s way out and am waiting until Monday.

And as a bonus prize, sometimes, when I raise my arm, it squeaks.  The drain, not my arm.


You’re told you have cancer.  You need life saving surgery that might disfigure you for life.  You need chemo.  You will lose your hair.  You will feel sicker than you ever have in your life.  You might die.

Imagine all this.  Except you’re a kid.

September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month.

I’ve told this story before, but the first person to really help me come to grips with having cancer was Dawn.  Her daughter, Sam, was diagnosed with cancer roughly 8 months before I was.  Dawn was the one to tell me to get off the internet.  Not to look at the statistics.  To ask for clinical trials.  She took the time to help me when, by all rights, she could have just focused on her crisis.  But I’m finding that’s not what cancer survivors do.  We help those who come after.

So I’m helping.  Check out Dawn’s blog and the Miracle Party, a fund raising event for all childhood cancers; leukemia, neuroblastomas, aplastic anemia and a host of other -emias and -omas that children and their parents should never have to face.

Back to the drawing board.

Plastic surgeon had to take the whole thing out.  Turns out the expander was infected big time.  The alloderm, on the other hand, did it’s job beautifully and is now incorporated into my own tissue.  This is good.  It might give me some different options down the road for reconstruction.  (I.E. Not just a lat flap.)   And yes.  I said down the road.  I need 4 to 6 months to heal.  4 to 6 months of once again being lopsided (though this time it’s the other direction and I don’t have to wear a bra.  Don’t laugh.  I take my perks where I can get them.)

Frankly, I’m not in the best of moods.  On top of this, we just lost another girl over at YSC.   Too young.  Too soon.  One of too many this summer.

So I’m going to share with you something that made me feel better.

Edited to add: I wish I could take credit for the following funny, but it was one of those viral emails that makes it round and round the internet.  I realize I didn’t label this very well, and don’t want people to think it is mine.  🙂  One of my fellow YSC’ers posted it on the YSC bulliten board.  So I wish I was that funny, but, alas, I am not.

Random thoughts from people our age…

More often than not, when someone is telling me a story all I can think about is that I can’t wait for them to finish so that I can tell my own story that’s not only better, but also more directly involves me.

Nothing sucks more than that moment during an argument when you realize you’re wrong.

I don’t understand the purpose of the line, “I don’t need to drink to have fun.” Great, no one does. But why start a fire with flint and sticks when they’ve invented the lighter?

Have you ever been walking down the street and realized that you’re going in the complete opposite direction of where you are supposed to be going? But instead of just turning a 180 and walking back in the direction from which you came, you have to first do something like check your watch or phone or make a grand arm gesture and mutter to yourself to ensure that no one in the surrounding area thinks you’re crazy by randomly switching directions on the sidewalk.

I totally take back all those times I didn’t want to nap when I was younger.

Is it just me, or are 80% of the people in the “people you may know” feature on Facebook people that I do know, but I deliberately choose not to be friends with?

Do you remember when you were a kid, playing Nintendo and it wouldn’t work? You take the cartridge out, blow in it and that would magically fix the problem. Every kid in America did that, but how did we all know how to fix the problem? There was no internet or message boards or FAQ’s. We just figured it out. Today’s kids are soft.

There is a great need for sarcasm font.

Sometimes, I’ll watch a movie that I watched when I was younger and suddenly realize I had no idea what the f*** was going on when I first saw it.

I think everyone has a movie that they love so much, it actually becomes stressful to watch it with other people. I’ll end up wasting 90 minutes shiftily glancing around to confirm that everyone’s laughing at the right parts, then making sure I laugh just a little bit harder (and a millisecond earlier) to prove that I’m still the only one who really, really gets it.

How the heck are you supposed to fold a fitted sheet?

I would rather try to carry 10 plastic grocery bags in each hand than take 2 trips to bring my groceries in.

I think part of a best friend’s job should be to immediately clear your computer history if you die.

The only time I look forward to a red light is when I’m trying to finish a text or finish applying my makeup.

A recent study has shown that playing beer pong contributes to the spread of mono and the flu. Yeah, if you suck at it.

Was learning cursive really necessary?

LOL has gone from meaning, “laugh out loud” to “I have nothing else to say”.

I have a hard time deciphering the fine line between boredom and hunger.

Answering the same letter three times or more in a row on a Scantron test is absolutely petrifying.

My brother’s Municipal League baseball team is named the Stepdads. Seeing as none of the guys on the team are actual stepdads, I inquired about the name. He explained, “Cuz we beat you, and you hate us.” Classy, bro.

Whenever someone says “I’m not book smart, but I’m street smart”, all I hear is “I’m not real smart, but I’m imaginary smart”.

How many times is it appropriate to say “What?” before you just nod and smile because you still didn’t hear what they said?

I love the sense of camaraderie when an entire line of cars teams up to prevent a dick from cutting in at the front. Stay strong, my peeps!

Every time I have to spell a word over the phone using ‘as in’ examples, I will undoubtedly draw a blank and sound like a complete idiot. Today I had to spell my boss’s last name to an attorney and said “Yes that’s G as in…(10 second lapse) ..ummm… Goonies”

What would happen if I hired two private investigators to follow each other?

While driving yesterday I saw a banana peel in the road and instinctively swerved to avoid it…thanks Mario Kart.

MapQuest really needs to start their directions on #5. Pretty sure I know how to get out of my neighborhood.

I find it hard to believe there are actually people who get in the shower first and THEN turn on the water.

Shirts get dirty. Underwear gets dirty. Pants? Pants never get dirty, and you can wear them forever.

I can’t remember the last time I wasn’t at least kind of tired.

Bad decisions make good stories.

Whenever I’m Facebook stalking someone and I find out that their profile is public I feel like a kid on Christmas morning who just got the Red Ryder BB gun that I always wanted. 546 pictures? Don’t mind if I do!

Is it just me or do high school girls wear skimpier and skimpier clothing every year?

If Carmen San Diego and Waldo ever got together, their off spring would probably just be completely invisible.

Why is it that during an ice-breaker, when the whole room has to go around and say their name and where they are from, I get so incredibly nervous? Like I know my name, I know where I’m from, this shouldn’t be a problem….

You never know when it will strike, but there comes a moment at work when you’ve made up your mind that you just aren’t doing anything productive for the rest of the day.

Can we all just agree to ignore whatever comes after DVDs? I don’t want to have to restart my collection.

There’s no worse feeling than that millisecond you’re sure you are going to die after leaning your chair back a little too far.

I’m always slightly terrified when I exit out of Word and it asks me if I want to save any changes to my ten page research paper that I swear I did not make any changes to.

“Do not machine wash or tumble dry” means I will never wash this ever.

I hate being the one with the remote in a room full of people watching TV. There’s so much pressure. ‘I love this show, but will they judge me if I keep it on? I bet everyone is wishing we weren’t watching this. It’s only a matter of time before they all get up and leave the room. Will we still be friends after this?’

I hate when I just miss a call by the last ring (Hello? Hello? Dammit!), but when I immediately call back, it rings nine times and goes to voicemail. What’d you do after I didn’t answer? Drop the phone and run away?

I hate leaving my house confident and looking good and then not seeing anyone of importance the entire day. What a waste.

When I meet a new guy, I’m terrified of mentioning something he hasn’t already told me but that I have learned from some light internet stalking.

I like all of the music in my iTunes, except when it’s on shuffle, then I like about one in every fifteen songs in my iTunes.

Why is a school zone 20 mph? That seems like the optimal cruising speed for pedophiles.

As a driver I hate pedestrians, and as a pedestrian I hate drivers, but no matter what the mode of transportation, I always hate cyclists.

Sometimes I’ll look down at my watch 3 consecutive times and still not know what time it is.

It should probably be called Unplanned Parenthood.

I keep some people’s phone numbers in my phone just so I know not to answer when they call.

Even if I knew your social security number, I wouldn’t know what do to with it.

Even under ideal conditions people have trouble locating their car keys in a pocket and Pinning the Tail on the Donkey – but I’d bet my ass that everyone can find and push the Snooze button from 3 feet away, in about 1.7 seconds, eyes closed, first time every time…

My 4-year old son asked me in the car the other day “What would happen if you ran over a ninja?” How the heck do I respond to that?

It really pisses me off when I want to read a story on and the link takes me to a video instead of text.

I wonder if cops ever get mad at the fact that everyone they drive behind obeys the speed limit.

I think the freezer deserves a light as well.

I disagree with Kay Jewelers. I would bet on any given Friday or Saturday night more kisses begin with Miller Lites than Kay.

The other night I ordered takeout, and when I looked in the bag, saw they had included four sets of plastic silverware. In other words, someone at the restaurant packed my order, took a second to think about it, and then estimated that there must be at least four people eating to require such a large amount of food. Too bad I was eating by myself. There’s nothing like being made to feel like a fatty before dinner.

Posted over at YSC.


1.  It cracks me up that L can read, write, and correctly spell the word turkey.  But pronounces it churckee.

2.  J threw a fit on the way to the doctor yesterday.  “I don’t wanna go to the pwastic surgeons!  I want to go to the OTHER doctor!”  There are no toys at the plastic surgeon’s office, but there is a slide at the family doctor’s.

a)  I find it both humorous and sad that my 3 year old knows the words plastic surgeon, drain, surgery and other medical jargon he’s picked up over the last year.

3.  I am tired of surgery.  Strike that.  I’m tired of recovering from surgery.

4.  Despite all the sad things, the crappy things, and the annoying things I’ve dealt with this year, I still think I had a great summer.  I got to spend wonderful time with John’s family, my family and friends.  The kids got to do fun things and both kids are on their way to actually learning how to swim.  I got to perform in a few concerts.  My life is good.

5.  I just walked in on L reading to J.  Love it.

Colonoscopies, surgeries and and a potential new flap.

So here’s the skinny.

Onc wants me to get a colonoscopy.  This was something she wanted me to do last year and we never got around to it, so no worrying.

Plastic Surgeon is still stumped by misbehaving frankenrighty.  It has still not healed after being on 5 courses of antibiotics over a 9 week period.  So he’s going in.  If everything looks good inside, he’ll take out the Alloderm and see if that works.  Otherwise the expander is coming out.  My next option is to have another lat flap done.   I have said I would just go flat if this reconstruction failed, but here’s the thing;  Frankenlefty  looks awesome.  Better than it did when it was mine.  I’m just not willing to flatten it.  So once again, I’m eating my words (I really should just learn never to say never.)  and I’m considering donating tissue from my right side to make them match.

There goes my dreams of being quarterback for the Broncos…

Oh I know.  Bad of me to mention the team that should not be named…