Thursday, November 25, 2010

Today I am very thankful ..

Having my reconstructive surgery means I am on the down slope of treatment. You learn so much during this process, and my goal early on has to been to share my experiences with newly diagnosed women so they know what to expect, even if I give up a little privacy. A first-person account is what I needed when I heard those words, "you have cancer" and I'm grateful I can provide that for others.

In that light, I would be remiss if I didn't let you know that half inch thick, post-surgical bandages (stylish though they may be) and a hot flash every 20 minutes round the clock are not a particularly good mix. Stir in a little "not allowed to shower" and "see me in a week" and you have quite an aromatic situation.

In fact,  I probably could have escaped the TSA-sanctioned grope. Nobody would have wanted to get that close for only $12.00 an hour.  I may have caused a few resignations.

I even noticed my husband sliding towards the opposite edge of the bed at night.

My cat though, didn't mind. In fact, at one point she woke me up by stepping on my newly created boobs.


The great unveiling was Tuesday. Still not able to drive, my husband took me to the doctor's beautiful downtown office.

When my name was called, as always, the nurse weighed me. I bet I've been weighed 100 times this year and my weight has always been the same.  But, I was shocked to discover that I weighed almost two pounds more than I did four days ago.

How can that be, when I only ate soup and yogurt for a day or two?

Are pain pills fattening?

(I later googled and discovered it was the implants, so those of you awaiting your surgery, don't be shocked at an extra pound or two afterwards.)

Fortunately, the doctor didn't keep me waiting. I couldn't resist asking him who had designed my lovely halter top, and to my surprise, he said he had. I told him Project Runway was in his future, and he said he gets that a lot.

So much for my originality.

He cut off my bandages, and once we waved the fumes away, I jumped up and walked to the mirror.

Birds started singing. Rainbows appeared. The sun arose with those brilliant rays that only children can draw. For, I was looking at a fantastic result, as close to having two normal breasts as a mastectomy patient can get.

My doctor is a genius.

After 13 months of believing I had no hope of getting good results, that I would likely have to wear a prosthesis anyway, that I would be deformed forever - there is no word for finding out that wasn't true.

Unless they have a word that means surprise, elation, gratitude, delight, amazement, relief, and renewed hope all at once.

Do they?

On this Thanksgiving Day, I first have to thank my old plastic surgeon for abandoning me. Because, he would not have given me these results; and he told me so:  I was too thin, my cancer was in the wrong place, my breasts and been large and wide and my body shape unique, the breast surgeon had taken too much out.. He said he couldn't put a large enough implant in my mastectomy side to match my real side and so I would forever be uneven.

And yet, I was mad when he dropped me.  I felt abandoned.  But, now, I'm grateful.  So, so glad.

This new guy - when I finally got to see him after months of looking for a new one  - he said could fix me and make a match.  By then, though, I had my doubts.  My expectations had been lowered, and all I cared about was being comfortable.

I was wrong.

Having a normal body again has completely changed my outlook.  I have always been positive about my prognosis,  but I was sliding into acceptance that things would never be normal.  I was going to feel like a cancer patient forever - how could I not, with missing/deformed body parts?  But, suddenly, I am certain I'm almost done, that cancer will never return, that this will be a chapter soon closed, and I will look and feel perfectly normal - not a new normal, but the old normal - forever.

I still don't have an inframammary fold because of the less-than-skilled surgery I had by the first doctor. It can be fixed - if I start all over. Had I gotten this new doctor from the beginning, I think, and he thinks too, that I would have gotten perfectly natural results. But, I'm happy with it as is and don't need to begin again for only minor improvement nobody but me can see.

Now, for those of you who are newly diagnosed, a reconstructed breast is an alternative to no breast - it is not the same as augmentation, which is an enhancement to a real breast. The projection isn't exactly the same and of course, I have scars and no nipple.

But, it's near perfect.  In clothes, nobody can tell.  Out of clothes, it still looks good.

I feel whole again. And, I didn't even know that I didn't feel whole. I had accepted that cancer would deform me forever. I didn't even mind; it was the price I had to pay for health.

I thought.

I don't like to expose my doctors on this blog - they didn't ask to be written about so I've mostly used nicknames.   My surgeon, my oncologist, and my newest plastic surgeon - all have given me outstanding and considerate care.

But, when you are given a cancer diagnosis, you are referred to people you have no knowledge about. If you have invasive cancer, you have to make decisions quickly,  and you don't have time for detailed research and interviews. And, reconstruction  is not the same as augmentation - it's a special skill.  You sort of have to take things on faith and trust your instincts.  And, as I learned with my original choice of plastic surgeons, your instincts can go quite wrong.

So, I am going cut a corner for you, and tell you that Dr. Jeffery Sweat was my plastic surgeon. He was caring, understanding - and, from what I can tell, very, very skilled. If you are in Sacramento and are able to get him through your insurance, then you should. I hope he doesn't mind my mentioning him. Of course,  there are probably other great reconstructive surgeons in Sacramento - but Dr. Sweat  I'm sure of.

This year, on Thanksgiving, as we share what we are grateful for, he - and all my caring doctors: primary care, surgeon, oncologist and plastic surgeon alike - will be  who I will mention around my Thanksgiving table. In their own ways, each one of them gave me my life back.

And, I'm very thankful.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving.


With expander a week ago

Even with swelling, they look good!

Monday, November 22, 2010

TSA Scans and Breast Cancer

Dear Hawaii,

You are the most magical place on earth. Yes, even more magical than Disneyland. I've not seen you for a while, and I miss the smell of plumeria and how the flowers seem to fall from the sky. I miss the tiny raindrops blowing down from the hills, the sparkling rainbows, and the sounds of the surf and gentle Hawaiian music.

Hawaii, you are the home I've always wanted, the place I feel most alive. I'd hoped, once I was done with cancer treatment, healed and back to health, I would celebrate my survival with a vacation in beautiful Maui, where some of my happiest memories lie.

But, I will not be visiting you again. You see, to get to you, I now have to submit to an assault. I love you, but not enough to survive a physical violation to get to you.

It seems that at airports now, all flyers have to be scanned in such a way as to show our bodies naked. And, people with implantable medical devices, such as silicone breast implants used in reconstruction, are selected for secondary, "enhanced" pat-downs, because we are out of the norm.

My darling Hawaii, you may not be aware that since August, women on the various breast cancer boards have posted about the new screening, and how they are being pulled out for pat-downs, over and over again, due to having a prosthesis or an implant. No one escapes.  There has just been a news story about a flight attendant who had to pull out her prosthesis during an airport screening, but she isn't the only one - many women have posted similar experiences. I've been reading first person stories about this for months, as these scanners have come online at airport after airport. Women with implants due to cancer, who have suffered enough, are getting stopped and selected for searches. The machines are supposedly sensitive enough to read the serial numbers on our implants - and we carry cards that match those numbers - yet nobody has been trained to let us through or allow us to bypass this last violation of our bodies.

These security checks are humiliating and intrusive. Once you fail the scan (or admit you have an implanted device) you must submit to an enhanced pat-down. You may not change your mind and leave. The TSA "agent" will touch your body, your breasts and your genitals. They run their fingers through your hair, down your face, under your clothing. These are not, by the way, trained police professionals who suspect that you have violated a law. They don't really think you are a boobie bomber.   These are $12.00 an hour government drones whose jobs don't even require a high school diploma. They don't care that you have done nothing (except get sick.)  They aren't paid to make intelligent judgment calls, they just do what they are told, reasonable or not.  Some hate it, I'm sure.  Some get their jollies from it, I'm sure.

I'm also sure that patting down 50 year old mothers, grandmothers and great-grandmothers who are cancer survivors goes far beyond what is necessary to keep us safe from terrorists.  I'm sure that our founders would be horrified at what this nation is coming to.

We cancer survivors are being selected for assault, our privacy violated, completely against our will, for no other reason than we had a disease and chose to hide or repair our disfigurement.  That has to be some sort of HIPPA or disability rights violation.

Doesn't it?

I love you, my beautiful Hawaii. But not enough to be strip-searched to get to you. Not enough to have the government cup my breasts, stick their gloved fingers down my backside and up into my crotch - merely because I had cancer.

I gave up my breasts to this disease. I gave up my hair. I gave up a year and a half of my life to sickness and treatment. I will not give up my dignity.

Good-bye, Hawaii.

And, Good-bye, Sweet America.

Tell me this isn't intrusive (as well as impressive)

For more, check out Fly With Dignity.


Sunday, November 21, 2010

Surviving the Holidays with Cancer

This is my second holiday season undergoing some form of cancer treatment. Last Thanksgiving, I was recovering from my mastectomy, and I had my second chemo on December 23rd. This year, I am recovering from the reconstruction surgery I had on the 18th.

After two years of holidays being impacted by cancer, I have a few tips on getting through the season:

1. Enlist Family and Friends
I was a "do it all myself" person. No potluck in my house, no way.  I created gourmet meals, set a beautiful table with napkin rings and everything, and cleaned and decorated. When you can't lift your arms, all of that has to go, and so I asked for help. Family cleaned my house, cooked Thanksgiving dinner, brought their own dishes - and you know what? It was more fun. For the first time, I got to sit and relax and let others do the work. In fact, I enjoyed it so much I waited a year to have my next surgery so I would have an excuse to do it all again! This year, I'm buying a Thanksgiving meal from Whole Foods. It's not about the food, it's about the family.  I will play games with them rather than spend time in the kitchen.

2. Lower Expectations
If your holiday doesn't include 500,000 lights on the house, a themed Christmas tree in every room and a night of caroling in costume - does it really matter? If you can't pick up the laundry off the dining room table, will your family love you less? Being bald and tired on Christmas distills the meaning of the holiday down to its most important element - having your family smiling at you. (And, of course, giving you a kindle)

3. Go easy
Chemo makes you tired, especially at the end. You can't taste, you don't have energy. Surgery makes it hard to move and do the things you want to do. You may be feeling discouraged, and like treatment will never end. Take this time to relax. Light a holiday candle and let the undone chores go. Choose the most important traditions - making a great day for a little one, for example - and let the superfluous go. It's not the time to fret about what you used to do. Read a book, reflect on your life, allow your body to rest, and let the pressures of the holiday go. Health is now your goal, not an elaborate, perfect holiday.

4. Shop Online
Low white counts mean being in holiday crowds can be dangerous. Plus, depending on where you are in your chemo schedule, walking may be exhausting. Take advantage of deal sites like or Amazon's vast list of items, (please use my search box on the right) and do all of your shopping online. Amazon will even wrap for you. I did 100% of my Christmas shopping online last year and I will likely do the same this year.  Yes, you miss the crowds and store decorations, but having nice young men in brown clothes bring you packages is also a plus. 

If you would like to chat with me about getting through the holidays with cancer, or chat with other Sacramento Connect bloggers as well as The Bee's Niesha Lofing and Debbie Arrington about Surviving the Holidays (whether you have cancer or not) use the chat window below. The chat will start at noon California time.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Surgical Chic

I woke up after my surgery with no clue what was under my bandages.

But, what bandages!

Whoever put these bandages on me missed their true calling as a contestant on Project Runway.  This week's challenge:  can you make something chic and stylish out of staples and bandages?   Why yes! Yes you can!  My new top is a combination of Sons of Anarchy motorcycle wear and a bit of  50s glamour.   The only thing missing is color - had the bandages been black, I'd be runway ready.  

I have a halter top.  And, a racer back! 

This style, folks, was deliberate.  My last bandaging was just wrappings.  There was no halter, no belly shirt.  Just foam and tightness.  I had big clips holding the thing together - this time I get these darling little punk staples.  It's a masterpiece, I'm telling you.  Somebody in that operating room is the next Carolina Herrera.

I'm almost going to be sad to take my designer duds off, but it's the only way to see my designer boobs. I can't peek with all the staples in my way.

My unveiling is Monday at 3:30 and I'll see how boobilishious I actually am at that time.  I have steeled myself -  I know it won't be great. If I can wear a scoop neck top and look normal, that is my goal. I've already noticed one improvement.  My armpit had been deformed, with skin and muscles stretched in such a way that it wouldn't flatten when I raised my arm up.  I had a very difficult time shaving that area.  And now, it looks like a regular old armpit, just like before.  I can't wait to take a shower and test my theory.

Recovery has not been easy.  Today I'm at that point where I want to feel better, where all the things I need to do are sitting there staring at me, calling me. (Did you notice the laundry on the dining room table in the photo?) Mentally I want to do these things, but it's physically impossible.  Yesterday, I didn't care. The day before, I didn't notice.  So, that is improvement.

The pain has been similar to the mastectomy.  On my left side, the doctor did cut through my virgin chest muscles to place an implant.  The purpose was to get the top "poles" to match in shirts, and that is extremely painful. I feel very much like I've been beaten with a baseball bat. My back, my ribs, my arms, my entire left side feels bruised and sore. There is no such thing as a comfortable position. Getting in and out of bed is the worst - I end up flopping around like a turtle on his back trying to get up.

Unlike heroic TV people, I am not capable of running or doing anything when my chest muscles have been sliced open. I guess that's a failing of mine. On TV, somebody like Michael Westin will get shot through the chest, and then in the next scene be recovering with bandages and running around driving cars and fighting the good fight again, so I know that's how it's supposed to be.

Me? I can't even cough without needing a pain pill.

The exchange on my mastectomy side has been easy though, the real pain was on my "good" side with the new muscle cuts. So for those of you who have doubles and are expecting your exchanges - don't let me scare you. It's not bad at all on that side, a little sore. You'll be fine.


Just a little housekeeping:  now that Christmas is coming, those of you who will be buying stuff on Amazon, please remember to use my link to the right to search for your item.  If you buy it, I get 4% of whatever it may be.


Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Zombie Apocalypse

Look at  the cookies my coworkers made to support my upcoming surgery.

I almost didn't get to eat them.

A zombie apocalypse. An asteroid hitting the earth.  Finding out we are merely ants in the universe and that big shadow is a foot about to stomp out humanity.  Those things sound pleasant compared to the phone call I got yesterday from my plastic surgeon's office.  Left on my machine was a message cancelling an upcoming appointment.  My surgery is the 18th, and my after surgical appointment is the 19th.

What do they want to cancel?

Fingers shaking, zombies pounding on the window, at 4:55 I called back, worried nobody would be there.

The secretary answered, and I was informed that there had been a death in the doctor's family, and my appointment on the 19th was canceled and probably my surgery too.

I'm embarrassed to say that at that moment, I didn't care one whit about whoever died in my doctor's family.  I don't think I'd give up this surgery for a death in my own family - in fact, I'm sure I wouldn't.  Thirteen months of an expander is worse than watching zombies eating your neighbor's brains, and I want it OUT. 

I stammered.  I stuttered.  I said, "No, this can't be happening!  I've waited so long.  I've been through enough!   I  arranged for a sub at my job!  It's a holiday - I only have to take five days off - any other time and I'll have to take two weeks!

I have boob cookies to eat!!!"

Then I burst into tears.

I didn't cry when I was diagnosed with cancer.  I didn't cry when my last plastic surgeon quit on me. I didn't cry when I was told I had to have a mastectomy, I didn't cry when I was told I had to do chemo.   I never cry.  My husband has never seen me cry.  But, I cried at this news.  The zombies were breaking through the door and were about to eat me, and I had no fight left it me, just tears.

His secretary said she would call the doctor and double-check his flight.

I whimpered and hung up, then I called my husband and blubbered.

A few minutes later she called back.  His flight is after my surgery and so the only appointment that will be cancelled is my post-surgical one.

Whew.  I can live with that.  The zombies have retreated.

Now, of course,  I have a doctor who may be distracted and upset when performing surgery.  But, I don't care, I'm getting this expander out of me.  Honestly, if he hadn't done it I might have performed that surgery myself.  I hear some women in the South Pole performed breast surgery on herself - why can't I?

I'm a bit disgusted at myself though.  It wasn't his fault I had to wait so long for this surgery and it wasn't his fault that a family member died.  But, for that moment, I didn't care about him a damn bit.  It was only about me.    I'm ashamed of myself.

I think I'll have a cookie.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Video: Who or what helped me the most?

I made a video describing who/what helped me the most after my cancer diagnosis.

See it here

Below my video, if you could post who or what helped you after your diagnosis that would be great.  Even share your own video, I'd love to see you!.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

The flurry before the surgery

I had three doctor's appointments last week. Wednesday was herceptin and my oncologist.  Thursday, I had a six month follow-up with Rockstar Raja.  He asked me how I was doing.  I said fine, no problems with the breast.  I tried to probe him about my back.  I said, "I'm having this lower back/side pain, do you think it could possibly be from the expander?"

His response:

Same as my oncologist.  Profound silence.  I even tried again and got the same response.  Not even an "I don't know" or an "I can't answer that."  Just....nothing.  He wrote it on his notes, "back pain" but never responded.   It was very strange.   Maybe that question is too stupid to be answered - it does seem a far-fetched idea.

I think they'd prefer to believe I'm imagining it rather than they can't answer it. 

Maybe my oncologist called him up on the phone and said, "Hey, this crazy lady is going to ask you about her back pain - she thinks its from the expander.  I was messing with her mind and didn't answer her,  you do the same!"

Anyway, Dr;. Raja asked me a few questions, did a breast exam, wrote "expander age" alongside "back pain" on his notes and told me he felt very bad that I'd had to have it in that long.  He told me to call him anytime I needed anything and he'd help me, and he then released me from his care.  He asked me to send a card at some point to let him know how I was doing.  I honestly think he meant it too - he's a wonderful doctor and the most caring of the bunch, despite not answering my question. 

Here's an example of the kind of doctor he is.  While I was in the waiting room, the phone rang.  Apparently somebody had cut their finger.  The receptionist was trying to tell the person that doctor Raja didn't do hand surgery but was getting nowhere.  Dr. Raja heard the conversation, picked up the phone and helped the person himself.  He called me often too. and this person wasn't a patient, just some person calling randomly.   Sacramentans, if you get Dr. Rajagopal as your surgeon, thank your lucky stars.  You will get personal attention. 

Friday, I saw my plastic surgeon.  I'd forgotten what he looked like, it had been so long.  (He's young and cute.)  He asked me if I had any questions and I figured I'd ask him about my back and see if I could quiet the room/kill a thread.. Never give up!   His response was:

"Probably not."  Wow, he'd answered me - he must not be answering his phone.

He'd said he'd never seen anybody with lower back/side pain caused by an upper right expander but he hoped I'd be pleasantly surprised after the surgery.

Anyway, I have to buy a front closing sports bra and I will wear that for two weeks night and day after the surgery.  He ordered a variety of sizes of implants for me.  I'd been told that I would have to be smaller than my normal size by my previous plastic surgeon but this new guy doesn't agree.  I could never figure out how that would work anyway because I still have one breast left.

I was a C before and I'd like to stay a C so he'll get me to a C.  I have been convincing myself how nice it would be to have a B cup and be able to button blouses all the way up without gaps, and how I could fit into more clothes with a B cup and being so tiny, it would be better suited to my body.  But considering that I still haven't haven't adjusted to having grey hair, I'd probably be best not to do any other radical changes, and I'm glad he thinks he can keep me the same size.  I can barely recognize myself as it is.  Gray hair and small boobs might be too much for my delicate psyche to handle.

I might start imagining weird back pain or something.

I forgot to ask about drains.  I hope I don't have to have them.

This time next week, I'll have that hard, plastic shell out of me and will be well on my way to putting this whole experience in the past. 

I'm almost done folks.  Almost done.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Cray Cray

Before I give you your regularly scheduled health update, I want to take a moment to thank our veterans and their families, who have sacrificed so much for the greater good.  I honor all members of the armed forces today - and every day.

Yesterday's appointment went as follows:

CT scan:  Normal.  As expected.

I told the doc, "Great news!  But my back still hurts."  He doesn't know why, there is nothing structurally wrong.

I offered, "Maybe the #$*% expander I've had in for a year is making my body adjust wrong, causing the pain?"

He said:

And ordered an abdominal CT.   

I don't want another test (and more radiation, I might add.)  I REALLY REALLY REALLY don't think this pain is cancer. 

Neither does he.

Since I'm having surgery next week, maybe by the time I get the call my chest will be even, sleep will be better,  and the pain will be gone. Neither of us believes anything is wrong.  Why spend the insurance company's money?  Isn't that wasteful?  I think it's wasteful.  But, in the unlikely event cancer has settled into my kidney or somewhere, some lawyer would be sure to convince me by not having the test and not diagnosing it, I should sue.  That's why it's not wasteful, I guess. 

I just want to say that on Veteran's Day today, I do NOT honor lawyers, who have done so much to push common sense out of any equation.

Maybe I'm just going cray cray. Maybe there is no pain and it's just my overactive imagination settling into my left side.  Which is burning as we speak.  My imagination has always been good.

December 1 is my last herceptin.  I began chemo/herceptin December 2nd, 2009 and will finish December 1, 2010.  One full year of treatment is about to end.  I'm beyond excited.  I now only see my oncologist every three months, and after a year, every six months.  My surgery is  (finally) next week and I'll just have tweaks and revisions and won't have to think of another surgery for at least ten years.  In three years, the odds of this disease coming back go down.

The end of cancer is in sight.  Buh-bye.

Today though, I see my breast surgeon for my regular six month check-up.  I can't wait to see his reaction to finding that expander still in me.

Can you imagine spending a year trying to cover this bulging monstrosity?

No wonder my back hurts.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

CAT Scan

Looks comfy, doesn't it?   I had a long, exhausting week, and  I was really looking forward to my CT scan so I could get some rest without impacting my family.  (I think they are getting tired of waking me up for dinner).  I thought about it all day:  how comfy the padding would be, how they give you those nice, heated blankets, and how they said it would take an hour so I could just lie there, listen to the hum, and doze.

Friday at 5:30, I'm wearing a hospital gown and am ready for my nap.   I got in feet first, just like in the picture, arms over my head. As I imagined, I was given a warm blanket which immediately began lulling me to sleep.

Just as I closed my eyes, a disembodied voice male demanded "Breathe in."   I was startled into obedience, and took a deep breath. Imperious, it ordered, "Hold your breath" and the machine started whirring around me.

It's pretty hard to sleep and hold your breath at the same time.  So, I  reluctantly held in air and gave up my nap.

The next set came, and the tech explained it would be a long one.  She advised me if I couldn't hold my breathe as long as they wanted me to, then to gently and slowly let it out so I wouldn't move.

A challenge.

If I can't sleep than I am going to hold my breath.

When the machine told me to, I inhaled deeply.

And held it.

And held it.   

Eyes open, I looked up and noticed on the machine two little light-up pacman  graphics that were apparently designed to help me know when to hold my breath.

Oh, this is getting kind of hard.     Maybe I can't really hold my breath this long.  How long has it been anyway?  Two minutes?  Three? Why didn't I pay attention to the start time? 

I looked up at the clock counting down the time.  34 seconds.  33.  32.  I can do this.  No, I can't.  Yes, I can. 

12, 11, 10....It's so hard.  Just a few more seconds.  I can do it, I can!

I did.  Whew!  The woman literally high-fived me when I was done.

If you think about it, she's probably really bored with her job - put people in machines, take them out,  over and over, all day long.  They have even taken away her ability to tell people to hold their breath - the only power she had.  The machine has an electronic voice that does it now.  (Why?  Were the techs forgetting?  Is there a study that shows people will hold their breath longer for machines than a live human?)

All she can do to make it fun for herself is to guess which people can hold their breath and which ones can't.  She probably pegged me as a winner and was so pleased at herself for being right that she high-fived me.  Maybe it was the first win she had all day.  Maybe she had made a bet with herself,  "If I get five right today, I get to buy a new pair of shoes."

No wonder she was happy.

I wasn't.  Napless, I went home and was tired the rest of the night.

I see my oncologist on Wednesday and I'll hear if I have a disc problem then.   I'm not worried about it either way.  

You know, since I held my breath so long, I think I deserve a new pair of shoes too.

Macy's, here I come.


Thursday, November 4, 2010

The man and the machine

When it comes to getting his patients into machines, my oncologist, like Dr. House, doesn't give up.  Next thing you know, he'll have his team searching my bedroom looking for toxic substances.  (He'll hit pay dirt if he looks under the bed.)

As I previously wrote, I have back pain, and my doctor wanted me to have an MRI.  Due to freakish circumstances, a year after my mastectomy I still have the goddamn expander in.  Because an MRI is a magnet and the expander has a magnet in it, I can't have that scan or the device will leave my body with the same explosive, electromagnetic force that caused Oceanic Flight 815 to crash land into the Island.

But it would totally be worth it if Sawyer was waiting for me at the end.


Since Sawyer's not likely to appear,  I was glad I had a way of escaping the MRI.  I've had enough tests.  I've been in enough machines.  I am not scared of them, and I don't dislike them.  I'm just bored.  Seriously bored.  You can't take your iPhone in there, you can't take reading material, you can't even scratch an itch.  All you can do is lie there and sleep.

Even trying to get a blog post out of it is difficult at this point. As many machines as I've been in this year, I have nothing more to say.

So, I was happy I could delay the test.  Yes, my lower back on the left side burns, but as long as I take the medicine prescribed,  I can live a normal, pre-post-cancer life.   I went about my business, figuring my next medical appointment would be Herceptin on November 10th..

Joke's on me.  How dare I think I could actually go an entire three weeks without being poked, prodded, examined or placed in a machine of some sort?

How delusional can a person get?

Yesterday, I had to face reality when the phone rang and it was Radiological Associates, calling to schedule a  CT scan.  Unfortunately, when Dr. House was told that I couldn't have an MRI due to the expander, he didn't give up hope, unlike California's Republicans.  Instead, he found a non-magnetic device to stick me into.
One good thing - my test is 5:30 this Friday.  I counted, and I've had about 70 medical appointments this past year, and this is the first convenient appointment time I've been given.  After work, right at nap time.

Maybe I'll see Sawyer after my dreams.