Sittin On A Porch

Sittin On A Porch
Our little back porch

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Hoppin John

It is the last day of 2013.  A gray chilly day, almost like it is mourning over the ending of the year.  A year that has been filled with challenges for so many people. 

My year?  Wow, this year has been filled with events I would never have guessed could happen to me. 

Bug proposed
I accepted
Vicki asked us if we did?
We both readily agreed
Then we were husband and wife
best friends
happy, happy, happy

We travelled
Met each other's friends
fell in love with these new friends,
on both sides

We buried Daddy
We helped his parents buy a house near us here in Monticello
My big brother and I have become even closer
I have gotten to spend so wonderful moments with my baby brother and our family
Christopher is a teenager
Nathaniel is a senior in high school
Jessica was 9 and in a few days she will be 10

When I married Bug
I also got 2 great parents
A daughter and almost son in law
Three grandsons
One grand daughter
A son and girlfriend

Cousins and Aunt, Uncles
Two new brothers
and a partridge in a pear tree
Okay, not that last one, it just seemed right considering the time of year and all

We will stop by and visit with Mr and Mrs Moon this afternoon
I used to see Ms Moon every week
But then I lost my mind and my anxieties took over my world
and the ability to talk on the phone or stop by and visiting people
Ms Moon would have understood me
She probably would have even know what to say to make me laugh and feel better
but I couldn't do it to her
or to anyone
so I shut myself away from the world
Hid behind my Bug

I am better
not consistent, but better
It is just I am so very happy in my life
But I have to manage the situations I put myself in and if I can not be sure that I will not break down crying or say mean or crazy things.
I have the best friends in the entire world
Everyone of them would be more then happy to do whatever they could for me
I have not wanted to take advantage
and now I am so far out it is even harder to try and come back into a life with friends again

Jan. 4 is the very best most special New Year's Party there is. 
The invite came yesterday and I was so thrilled.  It is a Christmas tree burning
reminiscent of the bon fires roaring on the hillsides in the UK and I am sure else where in the world
Fire and a new year just seem to go together
and dear special friends

The black eye peas are bubbling on the stove
I soaked them last night, which is my preference.  They are a bean that really doesn't need to be soaked, but it is part of the ritual of new year's eve.
Now they are getting thick as the water cooks down.  Bug helped me to chop the onions, carrots and celery for the pot.  This evening I will make the rice, cornbread and cook the turkey sausage for my hoppin John. 

Tonight we will each eat a big bowl of the new year's eve delicacy. 
Each bite we will make that happy face of rich savory beans and meat over rice and a piece of corn bread stuck to the side of our mouths.  We will scrape the bowl down and then Bug will remark, "Wait until it sits all night.  It is going to be even better tomorrow."

Which is why I love to soak and then cook my black eye peas on new year's eve instead of new years day.  I also like the transition from one year to another by cooking and eating what is often referred to as Southern Caviar between the last and new year.  It is a feeling of plenty for me to carry over such a basic food, and one of my favorites.  This year I will be cooking spinach instead of collard or mustard.  Just changing things up a little.  Life throws challenges and I try to change and flow with them

The pain is getting to where it is almost a back ground noise again.  Yes, there are moments where it grabs the spotlight and comes down stage right into all of my attention, but I think I am starting to relax into this world of medication and just not feeling so lost is helping to separate the pain from just the background.  After all, I don't just have stage 4 c, but I am also growing older each day.  So some of these pains may also be just getting old.

I think one thing that would help me with my pain management is to see the next PT scan.  I want to see where the cancer actually is so pains elsewhere can be dealt with for what they are, not what I fear they could be. 

I have a small bruise on my lower back, right on my back bone and it is swollen.  I don't have one clear memory of where it came from, but with 3 labs and unstable feet, the possibilities are infinite.
I have had it over two weeks now
But once you have had cancer, anything like this makes me take notice to make sure it is not something else.
I don't even want to say in my head what it could be.
I just want to look at the PT scan with my own eyes and see that nothing is there.
That it is just a bruise
This could help me a lot in starting to be able to calmly look at changes and not consider the worse.
It is funny instead of convincing myself it is the worst possible scenario,
As soon as that thought comes into my head I start looking for a simpler possibility
Something more reasonable with a klutzy person like myself.  Because people tend to think I am getting down on myself by using the word klutz.  Well, I could say gravity impaired.  It doesn't matter to me.  It is not a fault as much as just who I am. 
I have often said, "It is not if we will fall or hurt ourselves in my family, it is when"
My hands are covered with burns from the toaster over, cuts, scrapes, gouges and dry cracking.  Why?
Because I do feel in my hands,
but my brain is much slower reacting these days when it comes to pain

OK, my brain is slower these days periods
I had called the med delivery people three days before we left on vacation
They assured me that I needed not call that it was scheduled to be mailed out on the 19 of December.
I thanked them, double checked because I only had 17 pills left.
The pills had come with out calling last time, but they had gotten to me earlier then these seemed to be coming, and I don't want to mess up on my doses
This is the stuff that is keeping the cancer a little slower
Just like my brain, the cancer is slow
Slow cancer is good, slow brain, not so much
When the pills were not here yesterday I was concerned and called. 

Oh, no, they were not mailed out until the 26, not the 19th
They said the mistake was that they did not say the week of the 19th.
I know my brain is slow, but the 26 is not the "week" of the 19th.
but my brain is slow

By the time I found out that they had not mailed my pills and I had to answer all of these easy questions but fired at me non stop like a machine gun, just loud enough that I could barely hear them,
The anxiety just shoots out of control and then I answer one wrong and I can't get back, and well, I just ended up in the bathroom weeping

I cried because I had so much anxiety flowing through my veins I could do nothing else
I cried because I realized how impaired my brain has become
I cried because I had snapped at Bug when he tried to help me
I cried because I was scared
I am not scared of dying
that seems like such an easy thing to do at this moment
The hard scary stuff is trying to live when your brain just doesn't always work
It is scary because I snap at people like a crazed animal backed into a corner
I cry because I feel so stupid that I am taking 2 drugs for crazy and that I am still crazy
Okay, even more crazy
I cried because out in public every one looks at me and tell me that I am going to be fine
I am fine
Well, when I am not weeping and whining over poor me
It seems like a lot of people survive in this world just fine never even trying to use their brain

The pain?

It is not that bad
even the bad is in more perspective and I am learning about my pain management meds
I have to quit worrying about becoming addicted
even just mentioning it I feel stupid
I am a moderate person, not an addictive person
If I use the drugs as prescribed there should be no worries
just pain management
I am working on it
and even though I had that terrible melt down yesterday
Bug was there and wrapped me in his arms and told me how he felt
I felt guilty at first at putting him into this spot,
but he opened the door and walked into my life and has never asked to leave
he kind of knew what he was getting into
Not really because how could he
if I didn't
and still don't

We will get out of the house, maybe straighten up his parents new home a little bit.  We will come home later and snuggle with all the animals and eat our hoppin John. 

oh yeah
it is new years eve and I
am once again counting all the amazing gifts given to me this year
how lucky can one person be
Good bye 2013
what adventures will 2014 bring?
we will just have to wait and see



  1. I hope that your day is good, Kathleen. We don't know what the new year will bring. Last year was not an easy one for us. Maybe the Hoppin' John and the collard greens will help.

  2. Dont you mind your meltdowns, they help you cope in the long run with all the uncertainty and the pain, so relax and know that everyone dear to you does understand why you get a little ratty... after all, wouldnt they too get like that if they had to cope with cancer like you do... I love reading your blogs, the joy and the fun and the futuristic wish and look of it all is so inspiring.. I have cauda equina syndrome after two spine ops went wrong, but those life changes are minor compared to you and your life with the big C.. carry on blogging and letting us share in your joy and a VERY VERY Happy New Year to you and your darlings.. hugs from across the pond..Janzi

  3. ps...Love the young picture of you on the porch, you look so happy and pleased with life.. as you should be now you are a young married lady!! janzi