Sittin On A Porch

Sittin On A Porch
Our little back porch

Friday, November 5, 2010

cancer, bloody Mary's, remodeling and parties

This morning we met with Dr. Banderas.  Mary, Judy and me.  We talked, he showed us the PTScan on the computer.  He said that there was a 70% chance that it was lung cancer.  A 40% chance of breast cancer.  He was going to set up a lung biopsy and this would confirm the cancer.  If breast cancer then it is treatable and possibly could go into remission.  Things could be even better.  If lung, well that is also very treatable, probably not curable, but people with treatment can live long healthy lives with lung cancer. Sometimes once the cancer is under control they can use a pill form chemo instead of the IV.

And if we start chemo treatments again, which it looks like we could be doing so within the next couple of weeks, he will have a port put in.  They are wrecking my veins with all the sticks.  My hands and arms are covered in knots and black and blue marks.  My veins hide in terror when they see someone coming at me with a needle.  They roll and blow and hide and do all other kind of difficult things these days.

Finally, it looks like I am going to really know what I have.  My little "c" will have a name.  I am exited.

Then they gave me a B-12 shot and a shot of growth hormone, and then on to see Ms Donna in scheduling.  She was having trouble setting up the schedule so I gave her my email address and asked her to email it to me.

After the visit the three of us went to Lowe's to help me pick out the paint.  No, I had picked it out in my dreams last night, I needed to find the colors I saw, they were perfect.  So I would stare at all the pinks, overwhelmed and then I would start describing the paint color to Mary and within a card or two she would hand me the exact color.  For my bed room, Pixie Dust pink; for the living room and kitchen, Warm summer yellow; and for the 2 bathrooms and the guest room, blue mist.  Then to look at flooring.  This is a single wide trailer that I had planned on replacing when I bought the property.  I bought the property, the trailer was a place to live until I could put up a house.  Preferably an older house moved onto the property on the other side of the barn between the pines and the orchard.  But now, no I don't want to deal with all of that.  This trailer is fine.  It just needs a little extra attention.  I need to remove that horrible carpet.  Now don't get me wrong it was a good quality, beautiful blue, expensive carpet, but carpet is a terrible idea with 5 dogs.  I am now down to three labs, and you know what?  Carpet is a terrible idea with 3 ginormous labs, not to mention 4 cats.  

My first choice is the easiest to clean.  It is a single wide trailer after all.  So I thought we could look at the vinyl flooring and then at the wood laminate.  Tile is not a good idea for a trailer.  What I found and I am seriously considering is the light wood vinyl flooring that is made to look like wood laminate that is made to look like real wood floors.  I like that idea, the fake of the fake, hmmm and the easiest to keep clean.  I will take it!!!  Then Mary saw these wonderful area rugs.  There was one that I really liked for the living room, it kind of reminded me of plastic trying to look like bamboo.  I mean how perfect, vinyl flooring trying to look like laminate, trying to look like real wood with a plastic rug trying to look like bamboo.  I can't believe I like this!!!  The sales woman, said that is an outdoor rug.  I said, "perfect!"  Talk about easy to keep clean.

But it is much nicer looking then I describe and it will be so easy to keep clean.  I mean this would take all the work out of dealing with this horrid carpet.  Making life easier so I have more time for those things that are really important.  Cleaning carpet is not my idea of one of those important things. So that was that.  I had my paint colors and the type of paint I wanted.  I had my floor picked out and the card of the woman who will set everything up.  I saw a lamp that would be perfect, maybe, over the table in the kitchen.  Done.  Mary got a lamp shade and I got a pretty new floor register for the living room.  You know, just replacing the floor register made me feel that there is hope right here in my own little place.  Painting and a new floor, a little change here and there.  No moving, no packing, no stress about moving or building a house.  No, my dreams were beautiful last night with my painted walls. In my dream, the floors were laminate.  The vinyl will be close enough.  OK, time to take some action.  

Action, Bloody Mary's at Applebees along with some lunch.  We had a lot of fun, the food, hmm, well, it wasn't as important as the three of us together.  A good time was had, but the time came to head back to Jefferson County.  The girl's came in to drop me off and Dr. Bandera's called.  He said when he was looking at the PTScan with us, it caused him to look at it again after we left and he had it looked at, and there it was, cancer, lymph node, under my left arm.  

More cancer.

A lymph node.

Next week the doctor will call to set up the surgery to remove the lymph node. It could be 2 weeks before we have all the results back, but the doctor might be able to start the chemo again before we have all the results back.  That is why I had the shots today.  My white cells and bone marrow are still a little depleted.  So we are so close to naming this cancer.  Pink ribbon of course if it is breast, white for lung.

This is a lot to take in again, but this news is not so hard to take in like the last news from Dr. B.  And speaking of him.  He missed the cancer in the lymph node.  I was referred to him from a Pulmonologist, he never considered it to be lung cancer.  He never considered anything but unknown source and incurable.  He missed so much.  so very much.

And then tonight armed with my good news, I went to the party at Linda and Kent's for the Opera House Board evening.  I stayed for almost an hour, and I had a nice time and saw friends.  Linda gave me some hats and scarves, etc to wear and share. 

This was an amazing day.  The doctor, shopping for paint colors and new floors, lunch with bloody Marys, and then a party.  Then I came home and made a giant pot of veggie soup.  It is cold.  Have I mentioned that I dislike the cold?  I really don't like the cold, really.  But I can stay in the house and eat my soup and look out the windows and see the sunshine and know that next week they will remove that lymph node, that will be a little less cancer in me.  And the cancer that was radiated on my second rib does not show up cancer any more.  Neither does the C6 vertebrate.  Did the chemo and radiation do it, or was it ever there?  I don't know.  But it is gone, and soon also will be the lymph node, and from that node it is going to crack open the long held mystery and we will know.  OK, it is possible that we will not know, but I just feel that we will.  

So how is this going to affect my life?  Well, I just might have way more life then was suggested by the last doctor.  And Dr. Banderas is getting me to think differently about life with cancer.  How to use timing to live a full life, but to minimize complications.  If I start Chemo again the week of Nov. 15, and this would be a different combination then what Dr. B had used.  This one will be more specific to the type of cancer I have, but then taking an airplane to NY, within that 10 day time frame after the treatment is when my immune system is at its lowest.  Dr. M, suggests that we plan a trip to fit with the treatment schedule.  It might mess up plans for NY.  I will know more the coming week or so, but I have to deal with this cancer and participate in the treatments, make smart decisions.  I will get to NY.  Will it be this Thanksgiving?  I don't know, but by being smart now and getting this cancer under control, I will have time to go to NY later.  And I am not afraid that I will miss anything.  I have done a lot so far, and I am not giving up, or doing with out, just putting my life back in perspective again.  Perspective to what I know now, and what I will know soon.  

Such a good day.
I am happy.
I have hope, real hope.  Not just putting the best face forward hope.
Real hope.
A real cancer with a real name
with real treatments
that can be stopped, or slowed, or just put in it's place. 
Yep, a good day, and I am happy.


  1. So glad you have a doctor who sees life and is not afraid to chart a path for you.
    Take care,

  2. agree...

    I love that you are doing a little makeover on your place.
    I don't know where you get your energy from , wow.

    sleep well,


  3. Oh, good. On most fronts. I'm happy to hear that you're happy with the reports -- and I know that your dear friends will help you to get through everything.

    Tell Ms. Moon to show you how to take photos for your blog so we can see all your redecorating efforts!

  4. All right- I want to hear ALL about the party. You know I do.
    Call me!
    Kisses (but not on the lips this week)...Mary

  5. So happy for you. A good doctor makes so much difference~ In so many ways.

    Happy happy happy for you!

  6. I'm glad you have found the right doctor. It makes all the difference in the world. That, and very good friends.

  7. I am glad that you have a competent doctor. My friend in Maine had cancer that came from the breast as the primary site. She is still doing well. I have a good feeling with the new doctor. Stay warm.

  8. i love your talk of the flooring, the double fakes, perfect, and your paint colors sound divine. so glad you're getting spruced up, it will feel wonderful.