Showing posts from October, 2008

S'il vous plaît payer $37 tout de suite

Albert got a parking ticket in the mail yesterday. It was dated July 27. ..... 2007, from Quebec City.

I had intended to return the ticket with a nice letter last summer when we returned home from our trip. But of course it was just one of those things that never got done.

We did indeed get a parking ticket that day in Quebec. But not before plugging a faulty meter with about $12 in coins and receiving 22 minutes on the timer. We thought it would probably be more cost effective to risk a ticket than spend a hundred dollars trying to get the meter to give us 2 hours. And the fact is, we were probably longer than 2 hours anyway, but we did pay 12 dollars to park there.

I had a letter all written in my head as a response but Alb got to the task quicker than me this morning. This is probably a good thing - he's much friendlier than I.

They probably can't even read his English response. We'll see what happens.

Il tout sera bon.

Details, details, details.

This is my blog. Which is essentially my personal diary or journal of a record of what's going on in my life. It's always interesting to go back months or years later and be reminded of things that seemed so important at the time that I felt the need to make a record of it.

Obviously, breast cancer is taking a front seat in my life right now and lucky you, I have given permission for you to become a voyeur and peer inside my life. If you think you might be offended by graphic descriptions of my left breast then by all means feel free to avoid your voyeuristic tendencies until such time as something more pleasant consumes my life.

I cannot believe how much more difficult I am finding it to bounce back after this second surgery. After the first surgery, I basically jumped off the operating table and never looked back. Of course there was lots of bruising and stuff to deal with but I was feeling pretty normal and headed back to work within a few days.

I know the body doesn&…

WARNING! Serious risk involved.

Jed and I were laying on my bed this afternoon discussing the new Wii and the fact that I would need to purchase another controller, a nunchuck, Dance Dance Revolution - one and two, and Wii Music will be released on November 14th.

I told him I'll be doing great if I actually get the thing out of the box before the warranty expires. On that note he decided we'd better take it out of the box and make sure everything was there. We inspected the console and contents of the box. He assures me it all looks good.

Then we opened the Wii Fit box.

The first thing to come out of the box is a bright coloured warning sign. I assumed it was a warning that persons with heart failure, broken limbs or who may be pregnant should consult with their doctor before using this equipment.

I was wrong. It clearly said: WARNING! When using this equipment others in the room will be able to see your weight and Body Mass Index.

I turned to Jed and said, "Carefully tuck everything back into the box and fi…

Happy Albert's birthday to me.

I'd laid around and slept so much on Friday that I ended up being awake most of the night. I sat in my computer chair doing "fluffy" web surfing. That's just clicking randomly on things to pass the time.

Of course no one else is on facebook at 3 am, making phonecalls wasn't really an option, and I didn't have the energy to pull out my paints and whip up a masterpiece watercolour to hang on my new walls.

I received an e-flyer from Superstore and began to flip through it. The coupon this week was for $35 dollars off ... if you spend $270. Somehow I couldn't imagine wandering the hallowed halls of Superstore piling that many groceries into a cart. That is until I "flipped" to the last page of the digital flyer - where they were advertising a Wii for, you guessed it, $270.

It's moments like this that my brain is able to process about 84 simultaneous thoughts:

Hey, I need one of those
Superstore opens at 7 am
It's Albert's birthday today
But he …

Mary Poppins saves the day.

Friday Albert had to go to work so Barbee came and spent the day with me while Uncle Jim entertained Jed.

Barbee arrived with beautiful pink flowers in hand not long after Alb went to work, which is practically the middle of the night, so I made her climb into bed with me and have a nap until the painters arrived.

The contractors swear to me that they'll be out of here by the weekend - only a month behind schedule. There must be some kind of lesson or story for the blog here amongst the inches of drywall dust one must drift through while trying to recover from surgery and come to grips with the fact that they have breast cancer. But I for the life of me can't come up with one. It must be the rigid T3 schedule I am adhereing to that is preventing me from finding humour in the situation.

Thank goodness Barbee was here in the afternoon when the wind picked up. I was laying in bed drifting in and out of a drug induced stupor listening to Barbee's sewing machine hum in the kitche…

Morphine and nachos and I can handle anything.

My second surgery, a partial mastectomy, was a little bigger production than my previous lumpectomy. Well actually as far as production goes, it was probably less involved, but the surgery and time in initial recovery lasted quite a bit longer. I did not have to go through the episode in the frozen mammography room with the vice grips and wire insertion and picture taking, thank God. If they'd have tried that with my previous incision and bruising still not completely healed, let me tell you, I'd either have be frozen from the neck down or someone would have gotten killed.

I was scheduled to arrive at Patient Registration at 11:30. I arrived a few minutes early and was being called into the OR before I even got my gown and slippers on.

I was asleep by noon and I was crying when I woke up about 1:10. I don't cry easily and I can only assume it wasn't caused by some tender touching dream I was having, but rather the extreme pain that I felt in what was remaining of my left…

Na na na na, hey hey-ey, goodbye

That's the sound of me, kickin' breast cancer in the butt on it's way out the door today.

Once again, today I am "not eating after midnight" (last night) and "not wearing jewelry and hair products" as I prepare for surgery. A partial mastectomy they call it. It comes with a lovely drain tube and collection bag - I can hardly wait.

By this time last surgery day the procedure was pretty much over with, however today I'm in the afternoon group so fasting and coffee avoidance is a little more difficult. I had the pot of coffee half made before I remembered I wasn't allowed. It smelled yummy.

But I'm not complaining, I'm just thankful that I managed to bump someone and get in within 3 days. God is good. I want to think the bumped person gave up their spot voluntarily for their own reasons. Either way - God bless them with something super cool today.

The C-word

To me "The C-word" has always been a pseudonym for that disgusting word that means female genitalia.

Ever since I was called in for re-examination in the mammogram clinic in August, people have been great - praying for me and giving me encouragement and quoting encouraging statistics, and I appreciate all of that, but the entire time I knew that I knew that I knew that I was going to be in the 1-in-8 women who will be diagnosed with breast cancer.

So in the meantime I accepted that and delved into research. Once again I thank God for Google and the amazing mind-boggling internet. I checked out treatment options, read other women's blogs, and even scoped out wigs. (I am not a hat and scarf type of girl) I wondered if I'd be able to get fake eyebrows. I think that's what I notice most about people going through chemo - they have no eyebrows. (And honest Jesse, I don't have an eyebrow fetish.)

People often asked me what is the percentage of breast lumps that are b…

Trying to make dollars and sense of my budget.

I've been doing online banking for quite a number of years now. There's always a "click here to download" link at the bottom of the page. This allows you to copy your banking activity to Quicken or some other program for easy bookkeeping.

I've never "clicked here to download." What would be the point. The whole reason I bank online is so that I don't have to book keep.

With my recent surgery, renos, dealing with Community Living, and all the other excitement life brings, my mind is feeling a little cluttered lately. At least that's the excuse I'm using for forgetting to make a time slip at work this month. Who forgets to make a time slip? Apparently me. My punishment? No pay cheque this month.

I will get paid for the hours eventually - probably next pay period. Which is a good thing because, coincidentally, Canfor informed Alb that he'd recently been over paid for some vacation time and they will be taking it back next payday. So, you see…

This is about as political as I get.

I know it's a valuable right that we, as citizens, are entitled to help determine the governing body of our country. But a person should really make a bit of an effort to make an informed decision before placing their check mark. It would be preposterous to chose because of someone's age, sex, race or hometown.

58% of registered voters actually made the effort to vote. Count me in the minority group of the other 42%.

It's not that I'm totally uninformed. Mostly, but not totally.

It's not that I'm totally complacent. Mostly, but not totally.

The candidate I would have voted for has won in this area by at least a 3-1 margin in the last few elections so I figured why bother.

As suspected, nothing was achieved by this pointless enormous expense - other than it was a minor diversion from the overwhelming invasion of American politics.

Besides, there's something totally wrong with the system when a party that receives only 10% of the country's votes manages to ge…

Ha ha ha. I have to share this with you.

Yeah, so I have this basket of towels, candles, shells and paraphernalia in my bathroom. I was sitting doing my business last night and I totally had a moment of pure vision. (That's an art term for seeing what's really there, not the whole picture, or what you think you see.)

The shells, which I collected at Jamie and Ara's wedding, have been there collecting dust for two years. It wasn't until last night that I saw them as a representation of my boobs. I guess I never saw it because until now, my left boob wasn't dark and colourful.

My apologies, but I just had to share. Just be thankful that I've tucked the actual photos away, resisting the urge to be an exhibitionist.

When curiosity gets the best of you.

Have you ever tried to stop yourself in the midst of an action, knowing full well you intended on carrying it through? I mean more than just trying to stop peeing mid-stream.

I did that yesterday.

My instructions on leaving Day Surgery on Thursday were to "not shower for a few days" and "leave the dressing on." However they gave me two fresh dressings "just in case" I needed them.

After 48 hours the incision was obviously healing cuz, as incisions do, it started to get itchy. I gently rubbed the area to relieve the itch. And each time I did, I couldn't resist "accidentally" hooking my fingernail under the edge of the bandage and giving it a little tug. Because if the tape "fell" off, then I would have no choice but to change the dressing and investigate just what sort of damage had occurred at the hands of the surgeon.

I armed myself with a fresh dressing and my camera and stood topless in front of the bathroom mirror. I managed to get…

It was worth it.

I don't think I'd be willing to go through surgery every week just to get obedience and respect, but for this week, it worked.
I know when it comes to my blogging, Jed is a hot topic because he provides so much material on a daily basis. But to be fair, I must also show that he does have a touch of sensitivity and love for his mother on occasion.

The night before my surgery he had to dig out his Superman costume and get our picture taken together. I think somehow he was trying to rescue me.

It was touching.

After I'd been home from the hospital for a few hours I wanted a stir fry or some sort of veggies. Jed offered to order Chinese food and insisted on finding the phone number in the book and writing out the list:

Somehow from this list we ended up with:
1 Almond Chop Suey 1 Large Prawns 1 Chicken Chow Mein 1 Sweet & Sour Pork 1 Small Spring Rolls
It was delicious.
Later, I asked him to make me a cup of tea. I have 2 mugs I drink from: my purple pansies mug from Terri at work,…

Run Forrest Run

Did you know they give you boxers to wear with your open back hospital gown? I sat in the Day Surgery waiting room for only 15 or 20 minutes before they called me to go to the mammography room. This is a good thing because I don't think I could have listened to Spongebob blasting on the waiting room tv for one more annoying minute.

"I thought I was getting some freezing before coming here," I said to the nurse as she was leading me to mammography. The thought of a 10 inch wire being poked into my breast au naturale was not all that appealing to me.

"They do that in the room," she responded.

As we entered the room, otherwise known as a walk-in freezer, I realized my whole body was probably going to be frozen in no time.

They had me lay on the bed on my right side and wangled the bed around so they could stretch my left boob into the vice machine. That didn't really work so I had to flip my head to the foot of the bed and lay on my left side sort of propped up wi…

I cheated just a little.

It's surgery day. I was awake by 5. That sucks.

I tossed and turned until 6 and decided since its only an hour and half till I have to leave for surgery I may as well get up and get ready. No coffee and no breakfast this morning. My two pills and a mouthful of water will have to carry me through.

"No jewelery," they said. And no lotions. No make up. No deodorant. No hair products. No bra. So it took me a minute and a half to get ready. Now I wait.

Ok, I cheated a little. I used hair products. I know I went all week last week simply spraying my hair with water, but I had to use a little dab of mousse. And a few shots of hair spray. I mean really, why is it necessary to have flat hair so they can puncture a hole in my breast with a knife. It makes no sense.

There'll be no big 80's hair for me this week.

I've needed a hair cut for a couple of weeks. I was having a hard time coordinating with my hairdresser because her working hours are just about exactly the same as mine. I could get in on Saturday, but I really don't like going on Saturdays so I decided I could OD on hair spray and get by until next Tuesday. And instead I pampered myself with a new raspberry swirl bubble bath bar from Lush for $8.95.

That night I had the typical "I'm fine! I don't need a shower" fight with Jed. I always win.

He emerged from the shower smelling fantastic, and then running for his life, when he informed me he had used my bubble bath bar as shower soap. It had dwindled down to about the size of a nickle - enough to make bubbles in a teaspoon, not a bathtub.

He eventually did give me an honest-to-goodness apology. I've probably only gotten about 5 or 6 of those from him in his life. Usually it's, "Well sor-ry!" He also offered to to buy me a new one. I was stilled…

Oh, Scorvana

I had about 150 customer file folders to go through at work. I needed to take them from their drawer in the cabinet to the desk in the other room. I had to do this in 3 trips.

As I was piling the first batch into my left arm I realized that I was in fact carrying the pile as much with my boob as I was with my arm. For some reason this struck me as funny and I blurted out to the 5 or 6 fellow employees and customers nearby, "If I have to get my left boob cut off, I'll never be able to carry this many folders." For the most part this was met with shocked silence. Except for Nikki, who always has something to say, "Oh, Scorvana. You scare me."

I have no idea where "Scorvana" came from, but that's what most of the girls in the office, including the boss, call me.

A while later, one of my male coworkers called me over to his desk. "Are you really gonna lose one of the twins?" he asked.

He is a huge Edmonton Oilers fan and we are always bantering …