Friday, April 29, 2011


Can a person get their $10 copay back if they storm out of their doctor's office? Just wondering.

Today I met with a new nurse practitioner at Dr. Laudi's office. The entire visit was spent clarifying my current status which should all be in my chart. I was asked if I am still throwing up blood. That happened one time, months ago. I know we all have to learn. And I know we are all teachers at times- this is our chance to give someone the patience and understanding we all hope for when we are learning. Today, my patience was in short supply even after scraping the bottom and around the edges. Today, I saw a garage sale on my way to the clinic. Today, I just want my money back.

Later at home, I watched as Olivia learns how to crawl. She rolls onto her belly and lifts herself onto her hands and knees. She inches her knees forward, but doesn't seem to know what to do with her hands, so she just starts rocking, back and forth, until she accidently moves her hand or she tips over. It can be a painstaking process to watch, because you just want to help her, to do it for her, but for all the connections and pathways to be created in her brain- she has to learn it herself. An inch at a time.

"What's she doing?" asked Dave, a cab driver over to talk to Mark, after watching Olivia rocking for awhile and going nowhere.

"Just figuring out how to crawl."

"She's too small to crawl."

It is something to see. A few weeks ago, Mark and I were in a Byerly's grocery store walking through the produce section. The produce scales were large and gleaming. Olivia is small and was sleeping in my arms. We couldn't resist. Olivia weighed 13 pounds 6 ounces.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Care Notes

Dr. Laudi showed me my PET scans. I have active areas in my lumbar spine at L2 and L5 and a small spot on my icshium, which is the lower part of the hip/ pelvic bones. The plan is for me to take Xeloda (2 weeks on, 1 week off) for about 6 months, then rescan. Dr. Laudi thinks, once these active areas are taken care of, I may end up back on Tamoxifen. Xeloda has given me insomnia, so I am exhausted for the 2 weeks on and try to catch up on sleep during the 1 week off. It's a vicious cycle- always chasing sleep, but never quite catching it.

Mark and I have been working with a realtor and hope to find a new home for our family. Natalie and Larissa are busy with school, Girl Scouts, soccer and church activities. Olivia is sitting up now and playing with toys. Amore gets a surprised look on her face every time Olivia grabs her ears or pulls her tail trying to get it in her mouth.

After picking up the house today, I was straightening up Mark's desk. Mark claims to have a "system", but I wonder about that every time I vacumn under the sofa and suck up the receipts and envelopes he apparently has "filed" under there.

Buried in a pile of miscellaneous papers, I came across some pamphlets called "Care Notes." Given to people in times of need, they are meant to offer support. The tag line reads: "Take one- take heart. Give one- give hope." I leafed through them looking at the topics:

"Feeling overwhelmed when one loses feelings for another."

"When your spouse has cancer."

"Mother Teresa's response to suffering in and around us."

"We will meet again."

And, the one that made me giggle... "Beginning anew as a younger widowed person."

Hello? Last check, I am still here. Sometimes, I just have to laugh...