While I’m home recovering from surgery, I thought it would be the perfect time to take my Christmas Card photos of Charlie and Orso and get the cards ordered. Well I forgot the most important part of the whole task. You have to have dogs that will sit still and pose for me. Those two can be quite difficult when they want to be. It’s doesn’t help not having good range of motion on my part, but I think they were being cantankerous on purpose. Stinkers! Anyway below are some of the faces the brats made for me.
Photos taken with my Canon Rebel
First I want to thank all of my readers and fellow bloggers that have hung in there with me for the past three and a half years. You’ve read my stories, laughed and cried with me and left me wonderful comments that have kept me writing all this time. I write because I love to write and would write with no audience, but because of you writing is more fun. You’ve kept me challenged to grow as a writer to try new ideas and travel down new roads in writing.
Recently I was diagnosed with breast cancer and last week underwent a bilateral mastectomy with reconstruction. Monday I received the pathology report on my follow up visit with my surgeon. The cancer was determined to be Stage 1 and there was nothing in my lymph nodes. The cancer was very small and with the mastectomy all of it was removed gone forever. (I hope) The surgeon told me that the survival rate was 95% for five years.
That was probably the best news I’ve ever received, so you can imagine how I felt. Me, who never gets excited over anything, was babbling pretty incoherently. Poor Mitch had to tie a rope around my waist just to keep me from floating six feet off the ground. I was walking around making plans, talking nonstop not letting Mitch get a word in edgewise.
Bottom line now I can move on and get back to the reason for this blog, to entertain you with stories about those spoiled rotten wretched dogs that love to use me as a boat anchor on their walks. Thank you so much for your continued support I promise I will not disappoint you.
PS. During my recovery time of lying around and healing, I decided to start another blog site, “Susan Uncorked”, this one dedicated to one of my other passions, wine. I love everything about wine, so it just seemed like a perfect match, I drink wine then I get to write about wine. When you have a moment, please check out http://susank456.wordpress.com/ and let me know what you think. I love hearing from you.
I am married to a tyrant. It just proves the adage, “Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely” or something like that. Anyway, I go and have a little surgery and now Mitch thinks he’s the boss of me. And he is certainly enjoying his new job, a little too much I might add.
“No, you can’t do this’ or “What are you thinking, of course not, you can’t fix breakfast.” “You had major surgery three days ago and was just released from the hospital one day ago, what are you thinking?” Granted I only felt like lying in bed and sleeping until this morning, but it’s MY JOB to take care of him and run the house.
If I start to get out of bed, he almost runs to my side of the bed and asks what I want, then pushes me back and goes to get whatever it is I want. The only thing he can’t do for me is go to the bathroom but if there was a way to accomplish that he would do it for me. He follows me around the house asking what I am doing or what do I need? God forbid I stand in one place too long, then Mitch gets really nervous and makes me go sit down or go back to bed. I think he is afraid I’m going to clean something or start cooking.
The dogs are glad I’m home. They give new meaning to the phrase, “Love me to death”. They were so excited to see me get out of the car, I thought they were going to crash through the door to say, “Hi, glad you finally made it. We missed you soooo much.” Mitch had to put leashes on them and take them for a walk to burn off some energy while my son and brother got me in the house and back into bed.
Now it’s a race to see who can get to the bed first and position himself close enough to be in the best snuggle position and not mow me down as they launch themselves from the living room in a race to be first. I’m telling you, two dogs weighing one hundred eighty pounds combined hurling through the air at you is the true meaning of terror. And then there’s Mitch right behind them trying fruitlessly to get control of the situation before he might have to take me to the emergency room and explain how I got squished.
As much as I complain about him ordering me around, I know it’s because he loves me and the longer I take to heal, the more likely he will starve. It would just be nice if he didn’t take so much pleasure being the boss of me. It is nice knowing that there he is taking care of me for better or for worse. But between you and me I won’t tell him that.
Today is the day. Today is the day I’ve been waiting nervously, anxiously for. Today is the day I’ve been dreading. I made the decision to have a bilateral mastectomy with reconstruction. I didn’t make the decision lightly. I came to this decision after three other lumpectomies, albeit all benign, and I don’t want to have to make a decision like this ever again.
I’ve joked about the cancer, mocked it and made fun of myself for getting breast cancer. Some might think I was being callous, not being caring and thoughtful of others that are and have gone through this, but I’m not. This has been the only way I can deal with having cancer. To mock it and laugh about it is my defense against it. Otherwise I would walk around like a zombie feeling sorry for myself, sorry, that is not me. Besides I wouldn’t put my family and friends through that misery.
My family and friends have been outstanding through this long waiting period. There have been lunches and dinners (with alcohol), shopping trips to buy zip up tops, pajamas and undershirts for the healing process and too many hugs to count. A dear coworker even bought me a massage for the night before surgery just to help me relax and have positive energy. Poor Mitch, who has especially had to endure my warped sense of humor and totally inappropriate comments, has no idea how much I love him. I told him last night that he was the best time I ever had. Just in case.
This morning after no food or drink after midnight, not even a cup of coffee, I get to go have dye injected in me, have both my boobs whacked off and the rebuilding begun. Of course on top of having all of this fun, I get to go wearing NO MAKEUP. This from the woman who gets up an hour early on hunting trips just to shower and put on makeup.
Now that today has finally come, I’m scared. I wasn’t going to let it get to me, but it did. Damn cancer. But I’ve decided that today it’s okay to be scared.
Grass heavy with the morning dew
Leave tale tell signs of her passing
Stirring the thick mists
Hanging just above the ground.
Early morning dawn breaks
Through the low hanging branches
Soft light across the meadow
Dew drops sparkling.
So far the real downside to breast cancer is that I had to give up my hormones. I know that in the great grand scheme of things, giving up taking hormones is insignificant to staying alive, but these hot flashes are miserable. That sounds petty and small to some I’m sure, but until you’ve had a hot flash you have no idea what I’m talking about.
You don’t know what to wear, either you don’t have enough clothes on or way too many and sometimes not enough on that you can remove them in public. You never know when one is going to strike, no warning, just all of a sudden there is blast furnace turned up on high inside you and you can’t get any cooling relief fast enough. I keep a small fan on my desk and am constantly turning it on and off, to the point that I’m starting to get the crazy eye looks from some of my coworkers. Of course, they’re a little scared of me under normal circumstances anyway, so this just adds to the fear.
Its small comfort that it’s late autumn and winter is coming, maybe it won’t be so bad with colder weather. Of course the neighbors will think I’ve lost my mind when I’m walking the dogs in a snowstorm wearing a short sleeve t-shirt and shorts.
Stupid breast cancer, couldn’t it have been something else that could have caused it besides hormones? I would have gladly given up turnips or fish, (even though I don’t eat turnips or fish anyway) to save myself from breast cancer. Of course I don’t know for sure that the hormones caused the breast cancer, not yet anyway. I’ll find that out after the surgery when they take it all out and some of my lymphatic system too. It just sucks that not only do I have to worry about breast cancer, but I have to be miserable off and on too.
Where is that rose garden, nobody ever promised me anyway?
Do Not Cry
Do not cry for me
For I am not here
I am the wind,
The earth and water.
Do not cry for me
For I am at peace
I am light and dark,
The sun and moon.
Do not cry for me
For I am free
I am soft and gentle
The mists and fog.
Do not cry for me
For I am the light touch
You feel on your cheek
When you think of me.
I took the dogs on an early morning hike or at least that was my plan, but when I pulled up to our regular spot there were other cars already there. That was when I noticed the large letters under the sign that said, “Dear Archery Hunting” and realized that we would be out there with men carrying large high powered compound bows. So in order to protect the dogs and me, we went elsewhere.
Photos taken with my Canon Rebel
What a fun day Tuesday was, I couldn’t ask for a better day, oh sure. I woke up with a monster headache for the third day in a row. Switching from Daylight Savings Time to normal Central Time is a killer, even though we gained back that hour we lost in the spring. I keep waking up an hour earlier which is not good since we get up at 2:30 in the morning because of Mitch’s work schedule. Charlie and Orso are totally confused and don’t understand why they are eating an hour later but their stomachs are still on Daylight Savings Time. They were being especially annoying poking and pacing letting me know just how put out they were waiting for me to get my contacts in and clothes on. Ever tried putting a contact lens in when all of a sudden you get a jab in the back of your butt? Super good time.
The morning just kept getting better and better. I unplugged my phone from the charger pushed the button to turn it on and nothing happened. The screen stayed black and the phone felt hot. Wonderful, phone dead. It is two years old but I wasn’t ready for an upgrade, it worked just fine for me. I guess Sprint had other ideas and probably secretly sent a self-destruct code to my phone while it was charging. You don’t realize how attached to the little buggers you are until it doesn’t work. I always carry my phone when walking the dogs because between my “natural grace” and the things that go bump in the dark, I want to be able to call for help when they drag me off a cliff chasing some deer. I told the dogs that they better not knock my down or drag me around since I had no phone, like they care. I spent the day randomly calling my cell phone just to see if anyone called and left a message. No messages, just goes to show you that I really shouldn’t be so attached.
I was swamped all day at work with no time to take a breath, which makes the day go by faster, but didn’t help my headache. I had a consultation appointment with a plastic surgeon late in the day to discuss whether or not a mastectomy was a viable option and what the recovery time was. I have already read the horror story articles about women that the surgery didn’t go well for them, complications and infections, multiple surgeries and taking years to heal. I’ve heard the “It’s a great way to get a boob job” remarks and read the articles that paint a rosy picture of the procedure and wanted a realistic explanation from a reputable source. The plastic surgeon was awesome, we spent an hour and a half asking and answering questions. He explained the different types of reconstructive surgery available. When we left we both felt that we were as informed as possible about the procedure.
Mitch just had to tempt fate and suggested that since we were in the area, why not buzz by the Sprint Store and get a new phone. I don’t know about you, but there is no buzzing by a Sprint Store. We pulled into the parking lot and of course it started pouring down rain just as we parked the car. We made a mad dash into the store and was greeted with a packed house. Sprint was the place to be evidently. A Sprint staffer pointed out that there were eleven people in front of us (I think she wanted us to go home) and would be helped as soon as someone was free. Of course I didn’t know what I wanted, because I wasn’t looking for a phone so I wandered around looking at the different phones available. I am not super tech savvy so I mainly looked at the different sizes and colors. When it was finally our turn, I had narrowed it down to two models, decided on one based on the staff’s help and thought I was good to go. Oh no, I had to pick a color and a case to match, then it was screen protectors to avoid scratching the screen. The last challenge was trying to get my old phone to turn on so that they could sync all of my contacts and data over to the new phone.
Two hours later, we walked out of the store new phone in hand back into the pouring rain and headed home. Pour Mitch, by the time we finally got home it was too late for dinner. More good news, my headache was still going strong.