Thursday, March 14, 2013

Pink Ribbons ~ Family Makes Me Crazy!

Pink Ribbons is a feature series I have started that is posted every Thursday.  I am a Pink Ribbon Warrior, having gone through the chemo, surgery, radiation, the year of waiting and recently stage 2 reconstruction...which I find is really the first of many little surgeries.  I am at a place in my life where I am willing to open my journal from that time and share with you my anger, fears, challenges and pain of finding out you have cancer.   This is me sharing with you from the other side of breast cancer.

These are not current events, events are from Sept. 2010

Thank you for all who have texted, send cards or checked in with me.  I'm sorry if I didn't respond the way you expected.  I find I have incorrect memories of chemo week. I fussed at James for not checking on me only to find that he'd called twice and I didn't remember any of it. Mr. Rosey confirmed all the calls.  I just don't recall it.

It is my "good" weekend. So I wanted to visit momma. She had her final cataract surgery on Friday and did fine. But I wanted to see her again before my chemo. She is planning to have GYN restructure surgery later in the month. She may not survive the surgery. But she wants a better quality of life. So we basically gave her permission to die. :( To seek a better end of life anyway.  She is in end stage liver failure that was caused by her Tomoxophen.  It poisoned her liver and her oncologist never took tests to see how she was handling it.  

This is the reason my oncologist is going to use Arimidex for me as he said...though it's extremely rare, we found when it happens to one person, it happens to other members of the family.  It's a familial, genetic response to Tomoxophen and how it's processed.  All my sisters are on different prohibitive cancer meds now.

I need to see mom and we were going to go late afternoon. Then I find out this sister and her clan are going. My blood counts are good but I still have to avoid kids.  Seriously, they said to avoid grade school kids altogether as they are notorious germ carriers. So K and I decided to wait a little later to give them a chance to leave. It was closer to 8 pm before we arrived at moms. 

I'd been so looking forward to a QUIET weekend with my momma, and visits with my sisters and niece. sigh. 

I arrived to a full house. I don't get people. I thought I was being slick waiting later so they would be gone. 

fragrantroses wrote:

  Seriously, they said to avoid grade school kids altogether as they are notorious germ carriers.
Ain't that the truth!!   Somehow last year, I got H1N1 and nobody else in the home did. However, I'm betting on of them brought it home from school and kindly gave it to me. 

I arrived to find that mom had a house full.  Not only were all my sisters there, but so were my cousins AND their kids. I wanted to burst into tears. Long drives,  being anything over 30 minutes have been sending my back into spasms. Since that first chemo it's even more touchy, so I arrived hurting. Mr. Rosey wasn't feeling well, and there was around 30 people in the room. I don't do well in crowds ANYway, too many sensory issues there. I had wished just once someone would honor my wishes for a quiet weekend with mom!

I had my new denim hat on which was decorated with my big gaudy hair band flower. I got immediate positive comments on that. Then came the question that I dreaded and just KNEW someone in my family was going to be so gauche to ask.   It turned out to be one of my female cousins, "Can we see your head?"

I said "NO!" and walked away. 

Some of the boys were asking "why...come on...whats the big deal. Its just a bald head."   

Seriously? Can people really be so classless? My cousins aren't children! The youngest is 35! It really bothered me.

I was shocked by mom's appearance. She was thinner than she was just a month ago when she came for my surgery. :( She said she hadn't lost any weight. I told her then she had lost muscle mass . Her weight was probably stable as she lost muscle she gained more abdominal fluid. She wasn't yellow which is good. But she looked like one of those little dried apple people? More wrinkled, dark and knarly. sigh. She's so frail and I should be there. I'd like to talk to God about this timing.

She was so exhausted she went to bed within 30 minutes after I got there. She was so achy she took 2 sleeping pills to make sure she fell asleep.

Finally the cousins left and it got a little quieter. I had a nicer visit then with my sisters. 

Next morning I was up first and brewed coffee. That brought mom out. So we got to chat about my treatments. She lectured me about my meds and treatments and recovery in general. We talked about the American Cancer Society and all they were doing for me. She was happy about all that. Like I'd said...we'd been donating all these years and didn't know what they did with the money. Now we know a little better.

We left late afternoon, and today its just us. K grilled ribeye steaks and we had corn and shells n cheese...probably our favorite bad starch. lol

Becky brought me another card. It said...if someone asks why you wear a scarf on your head...tell them you are a pirate and then GROWL at them. We laughed and laughed. She had planned to send it later but after the cousins hassling me about my head, she couldn't resist. 

Some people don't see eye to eye about how I deal with cancer. Some people think I need to be dancing and praising God. I think this is one of those times where I am content to let Christ carry me through it. If I think too much about the cancer and what's ahead I get scared. I decided God doesn't want me afraid. So it's okay to take it day by day and let him carry me through.  I have another family member who thinks I don't have enough to do....she's asking me to help her plan a wedding. *roll my eyes*

It's a busy week ahead....getting my hair, taking the Look Good class.

Maryland Crab:
Glad  you had a good time.  May I ask who on earth asks a woman going through chemo to work on a wedding?  Who prey tell who?  I'm floored by that.  And I say whatever keeps you going with your chin up is what you do.  Don't let anyone else dictate how you deal with all of this.  I'm happy you were feeling well enough to go. 

Becky scolded me..why in the world did you let her talk you into this veil thing. Well it seems this family member can't relate to me on just a supportive role. She doesn't seem to have a clue how to be encouraging. It's like she thinks she;s being supportive by asking me to do stuff FOR her. So I was like hey...maybe if I do the veil she will stop asking me to go bra shopping, decorate wedding cakes, or create the flowers. I can do this and be done. Let's all hope that okay?

Glad most of your visit went well. Sorry it got off to such a rough start. You are handling all of these different situations with such grace. You're my hero. I will be praying for you and for your momma. Hope you had a great Labor Day weekend.

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