Sittin On A Porch

Sittin On A Porch
Our little back porch

Sunday, February 19, 2012

another full and busy week.....with a few twists and falls

Last night it rained.  The sky cracked and popped.  The protons and electrons boomed in the clouds.  The clouds released their moisture.  They wept and poured out that moisture while the sky lit up and the wind blew.  We needed that rain.  The tornadoes blew north of here.  The lightning filled the sky and touched land in places, but here, we were safe, we were blessed with rain. 

Tuesday after I volunteered at the Opera House office Mary picked me up around noon and we headed up to the Oncology Center.  I had thought my appointment was at 2.  I had told Mary and Lisa that it was at 2, but Monday when I got home there was a message from Stephanie, my scheduler saying that I had an appointment at 12:30.  I have no idea if it was my misunderstanding or I did not understand her correctly, but I had Ms Moon pick me up so we could make the 12:30 appointment.  We got there in time, but they did not call us back until after 2.  So, I have no idea what I did.  But we got to go in and see Ashley and then the amazing Dr. M.  Everything was the same as always.  That is good.  We discussed the possibility of treatment for the Hepatitis C.  We discussed what possibilities I would have with chemo with or without the treatment.  He gently, sarcastically with wit, chastised me for loosing weight and not drinking enough.  After we had hugged and helloed everyone at the Center we headed over to George and Louie's for lunch.  Fried Green tomatoes, chicken salad, Greek salad, Southern woman lunch food. 

We then headed back home.  Ms Moon had brought me a beautiful valentine card and orchid plant.  What a special surprise.  I had brought her a box of message hearts.  We both seemed happy.  But I definitely got the best deal of the day.  I got to ride in Ms Moon's Prias, talk with the amazing Dr. M, have lunch with Ms Moon and spend time just talking together.  She is so precious. 

I went to zumba that evening before getting the kids their burgers.  This is probably why I am loosing weight, going to zumba.  Well that, and rehearsals and not eating as regular because of rehearsals, and then so much physical activity.  Running at rehearsals.  Jumping, hopping, stumbling, undulating, shaking and wiggling at zumba.  I am sure burning up calories.  Something that I had not considered before going to the doctor.  I actually thought I was gaining weight.  But I had the crazies, so who knows when or if I was eating.  And I think maybe I need a new battery in my scale because it said I had gained weight.  I had told Ms Moon that I was having to watch what I ate because I was gaining weight and had to be careful not to put on too much weight before I had to run around on the stage for the Fantastick's.  Well, I didn't get that right. 

Wednesday I volunteered in the office at the Opera House again.  I worked most of the day, then I went to zumba and from there straight to rehearsal for Nobody's Perfect.  Thursday Carolyn and I watched Bride's Maids.  I have to say I had no idea the movie was going to be anything like it was.  I missed that completely.  We enjoyed the movie and it was fun to take it easy for a couple hours watching a movie.  Then to zumba and then rehearsal. 

Friday I straightened up the house in the morning, then met Manda and Falcon for lunch.  This is the precious couple I married last month.  They took me to lunch at the Rosemary Tree.  We had a wonderful time and they brought me the most amazing gifts as thank yous for doing their wedding for them.  I also talked to them about helping me with a website for sittinonaporch soap company.  Falcon is getting his masters in some type of computer thingy and Manda is good with computers.  I promised to teach Manda how to make soap.  More information on this later.

After lunch I headed over to where?  The Opera House of course!  There Jan and I set tables for the show that night.  A stop at the Winn Dixie to pick up a few things then back home.  Other Bob came over and we headed back up to where?  Oh yes, the Opera House for Friday's nights performance.  There I waited tables before running the spot light and sound effects.  We had over 40 people Friday night and Saturday night sold out, with over 75.  Ye haw!!  The show went well.  OB enjoyed the show.  But it is always late nights after the plays.  And it was a low pressure, dreary, gray, rainy time.  OB had driven over in his truck instead of his Harley. 

Saturday we headed out to fix the Malibu.  My very wonderful 5 door Malibu.  What I used as a truck since moving here.  But I have left it to sit.......for months.....and the battery was dead.  So we got the battery and some fuel treatment and continued up town to browse through the antique stores and thrift shops.  We walked from store to store then I headed over to where?  the Opera House.  Where Jan, Jack, Judy, Denise and I set the tables for the sell out crowd.  With the four of us, we were able to get things set up in less then an hour.  I headed out back into the gray rainy day and OB and I headed over to the best Mexican restaurant in town.  That is there logo.  It is the only Mexican restaurant in Monticello.  We headed back to Labrun where we got the Malibu running and played with the dogs.  They loved all the attention, tennis balls flying through the air, Harry laying  on the deck, his head in my lap.

Saturday evening I headed back up to, yes, the Opera House again for the Saturday show.  It was a little crazy getting everyone in and at the tables.  We had more people then we had counted out.  It was crowded, not everyone can see all of the stage; there were spots on the floor where only Jan and I could squeeze our little tiny butts in between the chairs and tables.  There were places that even the two of us could not get through.  But we got the meals served.  Everyone seemed to enjoy the meals. I only made it to the main course, then I starting getting woozy.  I felt fine, but my head was spinning, I was having a hard time staying upright.  I have never had vertigo like that.  I don't mean that I have never had vertigo, but there was always a reason before.  Last night, it was just out of nowhere with no warning.  Just bam!  I was falling over and looked like I was drunk.  I had not drank anything.  I had not had any change or difference with my meds.  I had eaten.  I was trying to drink more water.  I have no idea why this happened, but it was debilitating.  I went into the bathroom and fell off the toilet.  I kept falling off my little tech stage.  I fell through a door, but Jack caught me.  I went over the sound effects again with Rich and then Boone took me home.  He had to hold on to me as we walked out to the car.  I felt horrible.  I don't mean the spinning and woozy.  I mean about leaving the play, about abandoning my part in the show.  I am the one who has had practice with the sound effects.  It is not hard, but to just jump in with no warning, that was a lot to ask of Rich.  He and Jan worked the sound and the spot light.  it worked, but not as well as someone who has gotten to practice.  I was at home. I was sitting in my red chair.  If I laid down, my head would spin and make my stomach would start to roll.  So I would sit more upright and doze off.  But I was not comfortable and I kept waking up.  I finally made it to bed in the early hours of the morning.  I was able to sleep fitfully and at least one time got up to go to the bathroom.  I was not awake enough to realize I was still dealing with vertigo.  I would realize when I was laying on the floor staring into Harry's sleeping face.  When I got my senses back I would pull myself up and holding on to something to stay upright I would make it to the bathroom and then back to bed.  By 7 this morning, I was able to get up and down without falling over. 

I have spent the day not feeling right.  I keep having hot flashes wave over me or is it a fever.  My head spins, I have a terrible headache that is rolling over me, ebbing back and forth.  First pain from the center of my brain radiating out, then backing off so I can think.  I still do not feel "sick", but I have no idea why this is happening.   Did I do something?  Do I have something?  Is it contagious?  Did I expose everyone in the play?  Are we all going to be sick next weekend?  Am I typhoid Mary?  Or is this something completely else?  I have no idea.

Yes, I have been busy.  I did go to three zumba classes this week.  I did go to rehearsal several nights.  I was going all day.  I did have several nights without much sleep.  So, what is new?  I do that at times, and not fall over. 

Judy and Carolyn came over and we worked on the Murder mystery.  We chose the pages for the auditions.  We went over the set, we discussed characters we ideally would love.  We discussed options for the script.  We have a good basis for the show.  We are both such strong personalities and I think to people who do not know us would think that we get into arguments, but I do not feel like we are arguing.  Instead we each say what we are thinking, ask each other to explain our ideas.  We compromise sometimes, we think the same thing at the same time sometimes.  We work through our differences.  We try to give and take to make sure what is important for each other gets into the show somehow.  Carolyn was quiet and amazed as hour after hour we worked at it. Checking off the list of things that needed to be done.  Each of us thinking of things the other might not have taken much time to work through.  Judy had worked out the set.  I loved her ideas.  We disagreed on how to do it, but by the time we were done, we had used all of Judy's ideas with my input to come up with something simple, workable and trying to turn the Opera House into a bar in the future in space, deep space.  It is such a creative process.  It is a lot of work. 

That is my favorite part of directing with Judy.  She is able to see things that I do not.  She sees how to work somethings that I would not have thought about.  And with my different view of things it helps Judy to figure out how to make her ideas work.  Maybe it is a little different then she would have originally thought, but often she sees how she can get her concept off the drawing board into a 3 dimensional place to fill with actors, aliens and tell a story of murder and intrigue.  And when we leave the end of our session I admire Judy all the more for her concepts and her knowledge of sets and construction.  She understands how to play a joke, how to get the laugh.  She can see how the stage and actors all fit into with the audience to give our patrons the most enjoyable theater experience we can. 

I think now I will close up from this grocery list of events.  No big ideas, no deep thoughts.  Just a journal of events of the week.  I spent time with dear precious beloveds.  I worked out physically.  I did my community service.  I worked on three plays.  I finished a scarf where I learned how to shift different yarns while making a scarf on my knitting board.  I saw the amazing Dr. M.  I heard from the Social Security Office.  I am now officially handicapped.  It was hard filling out the paperwork applying to them to call me disabled.  It took me a long time to get through the process because I did not want to be called disabled.  But without that documentation I can not use the money from my IRA.  Well, not without a huge penalty.  I am not getting that much money from Social Security, and no other benefits, but it does allow me to use my money.  I do so much every day it is hard to think of myself as disabled.  But I know I do not have the intelligence I had prior to chemo therapy.  I do not have the stamina.  I do accomplish more the most people.  But then I crash.  I crash hard and sit in my chair and have to recover.  And maybe get vertigo.  Maybe.  I have to say that when I saw the letter instead of feeling overwhelmed and hating the tag, instead I felt relieved.  I don't feel sick or disabled, but I also know that I am 56.  I have stage 4 lung cancer.  I am not going to get better.  I am not going to live long enough to see all of my nieces or nephews graduate from high school.  I do go strong and hard and pretend like I am fine.  But I also know that is not reality.  It helps to survive cancer for me.  To admit it out loud, but to not really accept it in my heart.  To ignore the statistics. To pretend I am fine.  Not a bad way to fake believe my way through life.  And look at everything I do accomplish. 

That is real, that is not fake believe. 
Life is full. 
But my life is living fully with cancer. 
That is why I write this journal. 
To remember my life when I can not keep getting up and live my life. 
For when I can not remember my life. 
And getting to enjoy my life with all of my precious beloved ones.
that is real.
real life


  1. Kathleen, maybe there is some kind of inner ear issue. Sudden onset of vertigo can be caused by fluid changes in the inner ear. I hope that you are okay. Sounds as if you stay busy. Busy is good.

    1. Thank you Syd, I think you are right. Have a lovely day,

  2. I hope that you feel better will soon. I love your weekly updates.