Archive for January, 2011

Oh my goodness

I think that I have given heart attacks to a few people who love me.

I do not have a recurrence.   I’m fine 🙂  In fact, my very dry humored oncologist told me a couple weeks ago, “You don’t have any problems relating to cancer.”  Funny.

January 25th was the anniversary of the day I was diagnosed, so I wrote a letter to myself, reflecting on that day and how far I’ve come in three years.

Again, to those who misunderstood, I am so sorry.


Letter to my January 25th, 2008 self

Dear Nicole,

I know it’s been an exhausting time.  After two weeks of doctors appointments, biopsies, mammograms and several assurances that it couldn’t be cancer, your doctor is going to call, on a Friday night, and tell you that it is.  Cancer.  You are going to calmly hang up the phone, start to hyperventilate, leave the children with your friend and get in the car and drive to your inlaws.  In retrospect, driving was probably not the best plan, but it happened so we’ll leave it at that.  And the inlaws were comforting, so since you didn’t get in an accident on the way there, it was probably a good place to go.

I know what you are thinking.  The possibility of death is stifling and it’s so hard to imagine a time when you won’t be cancer mama.

But here’s the thing; life will go on.  It will bring you the people you need, when you need them.  There will be people to help you with treatment.  People to help you with the family.  People to help you with your spirit.  And they will come from everywhere.  Close to home and across the internet.

You will feel like crap.  And then you won’t.

The hair will go.  And come back.

Reconstruction will be a pain in the butt.  Ask me in 2012 if it was all worth it.

You will have friends who move on with their life.  You will have friends recur.  And you will have friends who die.  And this is hard.  But it’s not your fault.  Some people will respond to treatment and some won’t, but there’s no rule that says just because you’re fine someone else has to not be.  There’s no bell curve for cancer.  So no wallowing in survivor’s guilt.  It doesn’t help them or you.


Knit some hats.

Share your gifts with others.


And heal yourself.



English Language Learner

So, having two boys as close in age as the boy and his cousin are living under the same roof has taught me many things.  Mostly that little boys (and their sisters) really want to be first.  At everything.  Going in the door.  Getting their food.  They even only want to use the number one Wii remote.

Which brings us to today.  I asked Kindergarten to get into a circle, and two boys were lagging behind, bickering in Spanish.  I asked them, “Are you arguing about who gets to go first?”  They sheepishly hung their heads, said, “Yes.” and sat down.  The little girl sitting next to me asked, “Did you learn Spanish over break?”

I said, “No.  But I’m pretty fluent in 5-year-old boy.”

2010 in review

Thought this was interesting.  🙂  Got this in the mail yesterday.

The stats helper monkeys at mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads Wow.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

The average container ship can carry about 4,500 containers. This blog was viewed about 15,000 times in 2010. If each view were a shipping container, your blog would have filled about 3 fully loaded ships.

In 2010, there were 54 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 508 posts. There were 51 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 88mb. That’s about 4 pictures per month.

The busiest day of the year was June 24th with 143 views. The most popular post that day was All aboard the potty train.

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were,,,, and

Some visitors came searching, mostly for clay aiken, fanny pack, google memes, potty, and silicone muffin cups.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.


All aboard the potty train January 2009


Trauma and the cancer patient June 2008


Cider Vinegar Fly Pool of Doom October 2007


Review: Silicone Muffin Cups January 2009


Fairy Wings October 2008