Monday, March 29, 2010

All I Need is a Miracle

A little over three years ago I was told I had cancer. My run with cancer lasted about 6 weeks and it was over. Quick as a wink. I've often thought that I don't fit into the cancer crowd. I never had radiation or chemo, never lost my hair. All I needed was a few incisions, a removal of some affected parts, and VOILA! Cancer free.

At the time of diagnosis I was worried. I distinctly remember talking to my father one day. I had rehearsed to him the many, many miracles we as a family had experiened. I felt overwhelmed with gratitude for those blessings, but I wondered if we had used up our miracle quota. He assured me that, no, we had another miracle coming our way.

Last week, during a routine appendectomy, cancer was found in my sister's appendix. Tomorrow she goes in for removal of her right colon and some small bowel.

Today, I want to pass on my assurance to my baby sister. We have another one coming. We are a covenant family and we can expect miracles.

See how easy that is?

Miracles never cease.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Bright Side

I finally, finally got an appt to see an orthopedist about my shoulder. In addition to the pain I feel if I lift my arm up, I'm losing strength. Not good.

I started walking again with H. and my back feels tons, tons better. After my last post my back pretty much went out on me for about 2 days. Wow. I got a muscle relaxer from my PA friend, as well as a lidocaine patch....neither of which helped, at all. Which leads me to my self-diagnosis of a bulged disc. But, since my back is feeling terrif right now, my shoulder comes first.

We have a vacay coming up and we still don't have firm plans. H. likes to get outta town, but I'm always crying coming up with the same excuse....moolah! So, we are trying to find a happy medium. But we could very well end up sticking around town and seeing dollar movies all week! :) I think the kids really don't care, they'll just be glad to be with us, having fun together.

Have I mentioned how much I like my kids? I talked with a friend recently whose daughter is pretty much being a major nightmare. This made me reflect on my kids and right now, they are pretty much rockin' the good kid planet!

S. got into the chamber choir for next year. YAY! I'm super, super proud of her. She rears her teenage head occasionally, but so far, so good. My sister keeps telling me it was when she turned 15 that she brought out her version of a she-devil and that I need to watch out. As of right now, I'm bracing myself and hoping. Overall, when I show love and kindness, that is what I get in return. She's a great girl.

I got a call yesterday from a neighbor mom telling me what a great kid M. is. Now, I already know this, but she proceeded to tell me that when her son got beaned in the head w/ a rock by another neighbor boy, it was my kid who was first on the scene making sure her kid was a-ok. This mom told me that if all of her son's friends were named M., she'd be happy. Wow, what a great compliment. I'd like to take credit, but that kid came with a spirit full of love and compassion and I'm just feeling like the lucky recipient.

H. applied for a volunteer position with the city. We have no idea what the city committee is looking for, but if he gets it we are seriously considering taking our house off the market. We are both in the big black hole we call indecision.

H. used to mock me because when we would peruse the toy section at pretty much any store, I would inevitably find the Magic 8 Ball and ask it a major life question. He would roll his eyes and shake his head, certain his wife was on the fast track to idiotville. I sure wish I had a M8B that would answer this question for us now.

I know, I know. Turn to the scriptures, pray. Well, we've been doing that and there is still a big 'ole void in front of us. There are lots of interpretations for the void. Stupor of thought? Lack of faith? Only time will tell.

Tick tock, tick tock.......

I've heard spring is here, but I haven't witnessed it because I'm stuck in my basement 35 hours a week. Is the sun shining? I need to get the sunshine in my soul, that way it won't matter what the weather is outside.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Age-Related Concerns

I'm hoping I don't sound all whiney or anything, but I'm seriously concerned about having turned 40 and now it feels like my body is falling apart.

Exhibit A: My rotator cuff. Now, I haven't been to the doctor, but my local friend who is a PA (and since he is my friend he diagnosed me for free) told me I have torn my rotator cuff. Now, without magnetic resonance imaging, the extent of the tear remains a mystery. Here is a pic of what I think my cuff looks like:

Why does both my (free) PA and I think this? Because I can't lift my arm over my head without severe pain. Also, in trying to lift my arm, I overcompensate with my chest muscles, trying in vain to get my right arm to do what my left seems to do without any trouble whatsoever.

An MRI would be the final diagnostic tool and a few weeks ago I would have been fine with an MRI. But then my dad asked if I had ever had an MRI.

Me: Nope, never.
Dad: Are you claustrophobic?
Me: I don't think so.

Then he proceeds to describe how after you are rolled into an MRI machine the walls of the machine pretty much surround you and give you about 1 inch of wiggle room on all sides. And, only your feet stick out.

Now I'm starting to feel all claustrophobic just thinking about this. I mean, what if we have a major catastrophe and I'm stuck in this machine as the hospital falls around me, and the orderlies and nurses run screaming from the room to save themselves? I mean, I might be magnetically charged the rest of my life, never able to even be several feet within anything made of metal. I'd be so magnified that I would draw leftover nails from construction 10 years ago out of the ground! And no more underwire bras for me! I'd never get them off again. Ok, really I'm just scared of being crushed to death in that horrid machine. Honest to goodness, I'd rather have exploratory surgery to confirm my diagnosis than go into an MRI machine at this point! Who knew I was so claustrophobic??

Exhibit B: My vision. You might recall I lamented last year about getting trifocals. Even though I have the "right" glasses, they don't work. No lie. I can see distance no problem, but there is no way I can read close up...or at middle distance. And it's getting worse. I was recently at a darkish "romantic"-like restaurant. It's a good thing I knew the menu already because I couldn't read a darn thing!!

Can you read this? Probably, but I can't.

Exhibit C: Last night I started feeling all weak in my back, and then the pain hit. I had H. give me a massage in my lower back, but it didn't help! I tossed and turned all night. And what I mean by that was every time my back hurt (a lot) I had to grip either the sheets or the side of the bed and use my arm strength to roll myself over. Not pleasant, not easy.

Yes, that is the region where my pain is. No, my bee-hind isn't that firm.


And, as a pleasant reminder that yes my body is fragile in more than 3 regions, I just cut myself on a can lid while attempting to make homemade bean soup that is served half and half with Canadian Cheddar Cheese soup. Not just a run of the mill cut while cooking; deeper, but not deep enough to need stitches (I know this because I couldn't see anything like fatty tissue or muscle on the inside of my cut). The cut is on my thumb, on the inside, near the bendy part. No bendy no more! I had to pull out the hydrogen peroxide, sterile bandages, Bactroban, tape...and now I'm all fixed up and thankfully all my thumb needs to do on this keyboard is hit the very large space bar. I actually think I'm typing better than normal, but I think I taped this too tight as I'm starting to lose feeling in the tip of my thumb.

AHHHHH, life is good people. I'm alive enough to "feel" and you know what, despite all the aches, pains, cuts, bruises, tears (rhymes with pears), and bluriness, I'm feeling good!