Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Day 41 - CT Scans...And I'm allll warm and fuzzy!

Tuesday morning this week; yesterday, John and I reported to the hospital Diagnostic Dept. for my CT Scan appt. at 9:40 a.m. .
I really didn't know what to expect, though in my mind that is the machine I've seen on so many television shows where the patient looks like they are being held in a culvert and asked to remain still.  Just the thought of it has always made me feel a little claustrophobic, even when I don't consider myself to be inclined that way.
After being led, like before upon my day of surgery three weeks ago, I am led to the "Gowning Room"; more a gowning cubicle in this department.  When I emerge the volunteer tells me these gowns; new ones, really look good on me!   Maybe I ought to pinch a set of these stunning gowns to don at home following my next surgery!  Another nurse comes along and we stroll to the room where the apparatus awaits my presence.
Good news, the CT Scan is like a giant donut and you only enter into the hole of the donut up to your eyes.
Before going to the "slab" that runs back and forth into and out of the donut hole, the tech nurse explains everything.   You will take in a breath and hold once inside, then release the breath as you are coming out.
She also mentions at one point once the dye; injected into your bloodstream intervenously, will travel the length of your body and may cause a funny taste in your mouth, AND you will feel very warm and fuzzy AND WILL, feel like you are wetting yourself!!!!  At mention of wetting myself I ask if I have time to use the washroom one more time; a little insurance.   I exit and return and she assures me I won't ACTUALLY wet myself it will just feel that way!  Whew, I do hope she is right; I think to myself!
Above the CT is a very pretty little mobile with butterflies set at varied lengths, I decide if this is at all scary I will either close my eyes or focus on the butterflies.
The great part is there is an automated voice; Wonder Voice, telling you exactly what to do as well as little picture prompters of a face, first with mouth open; which lights up.  Then the little face with it's mouth closed lights up prompting you to hold your breath.  Then the number 5 display lights up and counts down to 1 and the little face along with Wonder Voice tells you to breath!  That one you need no prompts for, but it is only 5 seconds you need hold your breath!   At one point after the I.V was started the nurse held my arm up against the front of the CT and checked at the point of where the needle goes in, and happily announced, "It's going in and going where it should!", then added, "Wait for the warm and fuzzies!"!
The CT starts up again and this time sounds especially loud, like that of a great alien space craft...and I wonder am I entering another galaxy!?
Of course I waited with curiousity to feel the warm and fuzzy all over and most certainly and especially the "warmth like wetting" in thy nether regions!  My face suddenly became very warm, like I had just had a most embarrassing moment...or was thinking about one that might come along any second...And there it was!  LOL!
There was indeed a "warmth like wetting"!  I can't say I didn't like that feeling...something about it!  Well, I must admit  this new experience has peaked my curiosity of the many fancy new KY gels you see advertised. Further curiosity has been provoked!  <: ]  Slowly gliding along the track backwards from inside the CT, it sounds like the space craft is landing and as I look above to watch the mechanics inside the hole spinning round and round as the whir eventually comes to a complete halt.
Just like that all is done, i.v removed, and a quick trip to the ladies room for my own reassurance that I have not in fact wetted thyself!   With pride in my self regulation skills where my bladder is concerned, I want to announce, "I'm DRY!"!
I don't know when we will have our results, assuming we would before my next surgery on the 13th of April.  If all is clear then perhaps we won' news is good news.
In conclusion, one doesn't ever want to have any reason to need so many medical tests and procedures but in thinking of anyone who has to and especially where children are concerned, this particular test isn't so bad after all.
'Til next time!  xo

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Send in the Clowns...Laughs lots of laughs...

This is a challenge...I need laughs,ha ha, jokes, belly laughs, good comical stories! PLEASE just send them to my email: !  I had a rough night last night, and I need more laughs, too many sad and down trodden thoughts rolling through my mind; !  ...send them along!
I thank you in advance!  : )

Day 38 - Scary Stuff, The Woman in Black the fright of choice .

Last night I did not sleep well at all.
I can suppress it for the most part, but not last night.   That "c" word and in particular the "m" word; melanoma, combined with the term "survival rate" consistently stole any true measure of a good nights sleep from me.  I hadn't meant to allow these things to enter into my thoughts in sleep, but there they were relentlessly waking me .
I'd like to see The Woman in Black, now live at the Park Theatre.    I will happily sit for this show and appreciate such a fright conjured with great talent and good theatre, in comparison to the frightening thoughts which spent the night stealing away my sleep and terrorizing me all the night last night.

Day 37 - A day called "NORMAL"

Today I had the good fortune of a wonderful time with a good friend.   I had the chance to play "Aunty" and yes, perhaps felt a little like a "Grandma" and quite enjoyed it all!
A little shopping as well as some sight seeing and an early dinner at Boston Pizza.
This day was the perfect prescription of "Normal" I needed!
Some of the best moments in watching her nearly 2 year old, making funny faces, mimicking me and watching his reactions to certain toys, and books at the store when he and I explored so his Mommy could go and try on clothes. store entertainer, or that's the yellow pages ad for Clowning School calling out again, or the call to become a Therapy Clown and work for Sick Kid's.   It's not the first time I've entertained those thoughts!  Ah, it was a great day for "Normal"!  I may need more of same in the days to come!

Day 35 - A Good start...and making the best of a good/bad afternoon

This morning was a great morning.   I head out on the 401 for Colborne, arriving at 8:30 a.m to spend the morning observing at C.P.S with friend and former colleague Lisa in the All Day Learning Kindergarten Class where she is the R.E.C.E working with Miss Clark; Kindergarten Teacher.   Friend and Colleague Ann is also observing this morning.   It was a really good morning and while observing is key, it's difficult not to jump in and be a part of the activities.   What a lovely group of children and very welcoming toward their visitors.

I left the class at 11:45 and headed back to Port Hope to meet Hubby at home for lunch and then to our appt. with Dr. S for our post surgery results.
This afternoon was both good and bad news. I sent John back out to the waiting room, the little room we are waiting in is very warm, he's working at making funnies; God bless him, but snapping gum and well, I'm getting less patient by the minute; nerves I suppose, and don't wish to be angry with someone who is only trying to help keep the mood light and make me laugh!   I love him dearly! 
John had also thought that perhaps I should remove my shirt in prep for Dr. Stratford to remove the stitches.   I think he meant well; Hmmm, but the minute the door should open I'm sitting in direct view of the waiting room.  I remind him one doesn't generally remove any clothing until the doctor comes in and then allows you time to do so with dignity!  LOL!

I am jolted to wakedness on the opening of the door; i had fallen to just the other side of sleep.

The lovely doctor arrives and discusses the good news, at the original site of the melanoma, they were able to get everything, it is clear, and then the less joyful news.   While the Left arm lymph nodes are clear the right arm Lymph nodes,show  melanoma present. 

I will have a CT scan soon and am booked for surgery on the 13th of April, yay and it's a pj party this time. An Overnighter...woot, woot!
Sometime after the surgery I will see an Oncologist to discuss whether or not Interferon treatments should be part of the course of action.

We then discuss the incision on my back and how does it feel.   It feels good, some soreness but very minimal, and of course there is some itching, but that aside, doing Great!   He's very polite and before asking that I lay face down in order that he may remove the stitches, asks if I would like a gown.   In an instant I can visualize myself splayed on the surgical table; not a pretty picture and tell him no, it really isn't necessary.   I am after all wearing a bra and not exposing anything more than my back!  He's already been there!  He states in somewhat of a question, "So you have a cousin who works in ICU in Kingston.(?)".   Yes I do I reply to him.   "You know Beth?, Beth Reed?".

He says yes,  and that he actually worked with her on this past Saturday!   Cool, I have an in with Dr. Stratford!  How about that!  I then explain that her sister my cousin also; of course, had been at my home on the Friday night, it was great to see her!   My sister and I had had a lovely weekend at Beth's back in the fall.  Our drive home was somewhat of a colour tour and I took my sister on the route through Glenora, which reminded her of Digby; the digby neck, Nova Scotia.   It's a very pretty little spot Glenora. Maybe a spring tour!!!
Once the sutures are removed Dr. S, goes to his next patient while I pop on my top and ask John to come in so he too will hear all of what Dr. S has to say and between us will keep the facts straight.   Hearing it all again sounds a little scary but there really aren't a lot of choices and those I hypothetically present; playing devil's advocate, will eventually lead us down the very same path.
It's funny, I don't really feel anything ...emotionally;perhaps it just doesn't seem real?...It will be real enough when I get to don those gorgeous gowns again and get asked how my breathing is several times in a day! 
Physically I'm still sore under both arms and my right arm in particular the worst with a constant sensation of a severe sunburn and both arms feeling at times like there is something stuffed into the bottom back portion of my lower armpit inner shoulder.
I will just have enough time to complete recovery #1 and have another date via surgical suite with DR. Stratford! Not too shabby! LOL....well I AM trying to find the positives here! AFter that I don't think I'll see him again until next check up; 6 months I think and again for my 1st Colonoscopy!  More fun times!

Well it's been a long day and while offered a day off tomorrow, don't really see the benefit in that; time to sit about thinking about everything that I don't really want to think about THAT much!  Besides it's Friday and missing the day would also make me feel even less prepared for the start of a whole new ball game on Monday; setting up a full day learning program in a pre-existing Kindergarten class.  I know it's going to be great and the teacher is on board and excited too and with the great team we have will work together to create a positive model to precede the start of next years program which will be the official start to Full day every day learning for this particular school.

'Til next time.  Love ya'.  xo

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Day 34 - It has to be a positively positive good day! ...positive vibes accepted here!

IT's been a very full and busy week to return to work!  While so sore continues, I am learning to cope and rise above it!   That's how one goes about living!

Tomorrow is a big day and I am keeping everything crossed, thinking positive thoughts and hoping for good karma all the day!   Along with having the stitches removed from my back and asking questions about the many "quirky" little things happening since the surgery, we will get the results from tests done following the excision and lymph node removal.  Along with feeling some numbness in my underarms, I feel I must be mind-numbed because I really haven't thought about the outcome of tomorrow.   Prior to surgery I had a great many thoughts that led me to tears quite frequently, but now....nothing really!   I think perhaps some form of defense...and that it has been a very busy week has in many ways been a very helpful thing!

My morning tomorrow begins early with a trip to Colborne to observe my friend and former collegue, Lisa in action; R.E.C.E,  working in the kindergarten class.  The kindergarten teacher from Beatrice Strong, will also be observing tomorrow.   Next week we will begin the first week of a 10 week program called Kindergarten Foundations.   I enjoyed just over an hour visit this morning in the kindergarten room, the second visit this week.  Tomorrow is the best day for this as it will keep my mind off of the appt. with Dr. Stratford at 1 p.m..
John will be joining me thankfully.  No leaving the appt. alone this time.

If you do prayer, I sure would appreciate a brief one, positive vibes, etc.!  Anything is sure to help-I know regardless I am still a very lucky person for all that I do have and know there are so many others in much less fortunate situations than I.   I'm not alone which already makes me so very fortunate.  My heart aches for those who face greater uncertainties with no-one, neither family or close friends to help them through such times.

Well I must shower, do some program write ups, read and head to bed soon!  Love ya'!  xo

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Day 33 ...Busy days and a mind busy with so many thoughts and, "If you like pina colada's"...time to runaway?

Ah, some oldies play over in my head and they feel like some sort of emotional rescue!   ...and that said, there's another great oldy; Rolling Stones!  The pina colada song drifted into my head too; Rupert Holmes, as I sat thinking, imagining John and I on some kind of great escape!   All in time I suppose!
It's just the nature of these days lately, so many unfortunate turn of events and all so very close together.  Each of a different nature but all so unfortunate, it's just feeling like we need a break, a change of fortune and to have a string of happier events would be so incredible.
I am hoping perhaps Thursday's appointment with the surgeon who performed my recent surgery will bring about a turn for the better!  That's the order of the day, but will at least mean the removal of my stitches!
I continue to be sore with regards to most interesting post surgery affects I am experiencing.  Thankfully  I have a lovely lady sharing what she knows from her own experiences and is able to advise me on what to do to help in the healing process and get through it without going crazy!
My right arm is very sore, as in it actually hurts to touch my skin from just behind my shoulder down my arm and almost to the elbow.   It feels like a bad sunburn or rash.   My left arm seems to be experiencing a different sensation in that from just above my elbow to just above my wrist on my arms underside feels like severe bruising.  Both underarms are extremely sore, at times feeling like a burning sensation, along with consistent numbness.  The actual incisions in this area are not sore and healing very well.   The larger incision from the excision on my back is a little sore at times and itches frequently which is a sign of healing, now that's positive.

All things aside there are some positives coming up in the near future, our daughter graduates from her course at Complections International School of Makeup Artistry, April 27th.
While she is not a fan of city life, she has enjoyed the program immensely!  She has done very well and we are so happy for her and very proud of her.  In the fall she will add further studies to her repertoire as she will attend  Career School; for hairstyling.

Next week I will have the opportunity to work a couple of days each week in a Kindergarten Classroom here in Port Hope in giving the teacher a chance to participate and experience what Full Day Learning looks like for a Kindergarten class.   Beatrice Strong will offer Full Day Kindergarten programs next fall; 2012.  Myself and another R.E.C.E will be in the class together for two weeks; four days, then she will return to her class and the teacher and I will continue with planning etc. for an additional eight weeks.

Well I'm getting a tad weary, today was a very busy day...planning our calendar at work for May to August programming, preparing for next week, busy with a landslide majority of play centre children in our care over those attending with parents for programs, messages, calls, and all that a busy day entails.   Busy IS good though in keeping your mind moving forward and active!
Hey, and how about that weather...GORGEOUS!   I await less pains in these arms so I may fully enjoy a day such as today in cleaning up flower gardens and preparing the yard for lots of fun outdoor days ahead!
Oh, and first bbq tonight ...hamburgers and salad for dinner!   Yyyyyyum!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Day 30 Happy St. Patrick's Day, Happy Birthday Buddy... and *gasp* no Bailey's in the house!

Happy St. Patrick's Day!  Today is our future Son in Law's Birthday!  What a great day for a birthday, so much celebration!  Poor fellow presently nursing two broken arms!  While putting both arms in front of one as we are falling; in this case down a flight of stairs, seems logical it is in fact not such a great idea but I'm sure must be a manner of reflex!  Buddy did what most of us might also do and that is two broken arms explained.
A great day for a birthday but not such a great way to celebrate, especially in the style one might imagine one does on an Irish holiday!
My arms are intact; well, as long as we're not considering our "Arm pits" in the matter, that's a whole different story!  My ailment; arm pits aside, is the lack of Bailey's to enjoy on ice!   Well I'm sure there's something here that I might enjoy as well ...just a wee shot or so!   Otherwise, we'll just stick to pain killers and that's tied to the "whole different story" which if you've been following along you already know!
Cheers to you all!  Love ya'!  xo

Early to Bed For Mrs. Bleary Eyes...and a change forecast!

Last night following the movie The Help; watched in it's completion after a few stops and starts, I wrote a blog and headed to bed, it was just after midnight.   That was the first such late night I've had in over two weeks.  It looks like I won't be doing that any more.  This morning I didn't crawl out of bed until just before 11 A.M!  I felt like a cat, and there on the chest by the window was our lovely Alfie, all curled up sleeping and smiling with such a look of great comfort and relaxation upon his little face.   I feel very rested.  While having to get used to sleeping on my back, I'm doing fine!    Always a spooner I can only indulge in spooning ever so briefly before I am reminded of "the surgery" and have to roll over.  Hmmm, maybe when repainting the bedroom I should consider a masterpiece for the ceiling!  
The need to be in bed early just might be the change I have hoped for.  I'll be in bed no later than 10:30, and WILL will myself to be up early and get out for that morning walk I have long thought would be such a lovely way to start the day!  I'm sure John would love the responsibility of being my "wake-up" call!

Friday, March 16, 2012

Day 29...Of "Dici" days, Yay for Visitors and a wee close shave closer!

It's one week today since my surgery, and it's been a few days since I last post and while I've come a long way from the glazed over, drug induced, just want to lay around, read briefly, perhaps eat a bite or two and fall back asleep post op' state of days past, I am still very much enjoying a daily afternoon siesta and am yet in some pain with the incisions I have been left with; or within the proximity of that(those) area(s).
I assumed two incisions would be the case but there are indeed three.  The two smaller of, being the most painful and affording the greatest level of discomfort and continous sense of "Ouch"!  
I had the pleasure of the company of my boss and a fellow employee/friend  come to call yesterday and brought some of the loveliest flowers and a card signed by those I work with in the OEYC and Child Care-so enjoyed these and the laughs we shared as well.   My fellow employee/friend,  was so kind as to bring me a couple of bra's that she had benefited from with her own surgery some time ago.   These are front closing bra's which, as I recently confessed to my mother, remind me of my younger days and my husband will have a chuckle too as we go down memory lane; while not quite the ease of a "Dici"!   I have since tried one and most helpful, but will confess to having taken it off a short time ago as even in it's "supporting elements" like any bra I don these days, I found it was becoming quite uncomfortable and have released my "hostages" from it's grip.  It's getting dark now so that will help conceal my "natural" way!  LOL.

I have made a couple of attempts to shave my underarms...egaaaaaaads, that hasn't gone so well.  It seems there is some numbness in that area on both underarms, but more prominently so on the right.   This area is well above the incisions on the outside of both breasts, but holy hannah, it's really sore there!  Apparently is has something to do with nerves that may have been cut into.  The larger incision on my back isn't nearly the trouble these other two are, but it looks so angry with the stitches and red and just angry.  I'll be happy to have the stitches out and see it healing up more.

I plan to return to work next week but must admit to having reservations!   Just the thought of picking up a child makes me cringe, or having a little one run full throttle to me; there is a little one that enjoys doing just that lately.  Ah, he used to shy away so it's been a welcome change to have him that happy to see me!  There is much coming up though as I prepare to shift programming gears and look forward to some change as well!  I can't remember when I had this much time at home and not having been on holiday!   I dont' feel ill, though tired and of course very sore and as I regain energy but remain sore find it a little frustrating!  Hmm maybe an umpires attire would be suitable until further healing takes place!

Next Thursday I will have my stitches out and receive the results of the surgery/lymph node biopsy.  I can't imagine it will be anything but good news.  The chances there will be any cancer beyond the lymph nodes is very slim from what I have read and our family could certainly stand some positive news lately.

In the midst of watching the movie "The Help" with a dear friend, I had some welcome and unexpected visitors, with my cousin and her daughter stepping in briefly and then my sister!  What fun I should have planned a pyjama party!   My friend  and I just finished watching the movie and enjoyed it immensely and she has just gone home. I must I now head up to my bed!   My back is hurting and I am weary.
It's been a wonderful day though with some of the loveliest people; LOL, I hear Barbara Streisand singing, too bad they couldn't all have stayed longer, we really could have had a one week since surgery celebration in style!  Here's to Good things ahead and good friends!  :o)  ...and do you hear Rod Stewart, "Have I told you lately that I love you?"!   I do!  xo

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Day 24 - No movies, no chocolate...just sleep

Prior to having had this surgery I imagined my "Quick" recovery, that is thinking that day 1 after surgery I'd be indulging in the gifted treats, watch all of the movies in a day and would be reading through all magazines and looking for more to read!   LOL, funny how things don't go quite as we imagine.  This day has simply been about sleep, trying to keep even a little bit of water or ginger ale down in the tummy and being brave enough to shower and remove all bandages.
It isn't until late in the afternoon we take off the bandages and later I take a shower asking John to stay in the bathroom should I tumble.   I stand with my back to the shower head to loosen the multiple strips of steri tape left over the stitches in my back then turn for John to slowly remove them.  I admit to feeling a little whoozy as they come off and step out and sit for a moment.  Time to go back to bed.
That's the day in a nutshell.  Rest, rest, and more rest.

Day 23 - Visions of Surgeons dance in my head

It's a very early morning today, I first open my eyes at 5:30 am, to the sound of Alfie our youngest cat chirping about needing to go outside.   Well taught by our beloved Cloud, Alfie too knows how to roust one from our warm beds, as he finds tissue paper from an opened gift and krinkles it until I finally get up and foollwo him downstairs.
It's THAT day.  Toady is my surgery day.  I am booked for surgery at 9:30 for a Sentinel Lymph node biopsy and an excision.
We arrive at 7 am., I bid my beloved John farewelll and am whisked away to the "gowning" room, for not one gown but two, one open in back and the other in front, like a housecoat; very nice.  Oh look, someone else has the very same fashion sense, same outfit.   I'm not shopping there anymroe!

I sit for an hour and then am taken by wheel chair to Nuclear medicine, where the process for Sentinel Lymph node biopsy imaging begins.  Here I meet Kate, who's specialty is in nuclear medicine and she will do the imaging. The machine is similar to a CAT Scan and takes images from all sides, but before that happens they have to inject a dye referred to as the radio tracer into the area of the original site of the melanoma.   I had read somewhere in all of my presurgery readings that this might hurt.   UNDERSTATEMENT, and of course it isn't one needle, it is four.  There were two gentlemen who came into the room, one; with the needles, was australian, and rather cute.   He introduces himself and then proceeds and I turn the other direction so I don't see the needle.  That is when he responds, "Oh the needle is small but there are four."!  He apologizes with each injection and I hug the pillow beneath me a little tighter each time and tell him he doesn't have to apologize,  it's o.k, because he's just doing his job.  He laughs.  I think the injections are by far one of the worst moments in all of this.   I had a wonderful 3rd year student with me all the way through, her name is Ashley and she is in the 4 year RN program at Trent.
Following the injections and just over an hour of repositioning for various angles of images and being marked with felt pen for accuracy in locating the lymph nodes, Ashley wheels me back to the Day Surgery area, where we wait for another hour and a half.  They are behind today.  Of course by this point in the day we have had plenty of time to talk and know a little about each other.  She is now my rock and doing a wonderful job.   Her compassion and caring manner shines through and is greatly appreciated.

We finally head to the operating suite at 11:00 a.m, which feels like it should be some time much later in the afernoon.   In the surgical unit we have quite a gathering including my surgeon friend Dr. S; waving from the other end of the table, Dr. H; who had just asked the final round of questions before our walk down the hall, Kevin the Paramedic, Student Nurse Ashley and a number of other surgical nurses.  They ask if I mind that Kevin the Paramedic observes, he is learning about anesthetics, at this point I'm just happy to finally be in the OR, so no, I don't mind at all, "Hi Kevin!"!  Dr. H mentioned she would give me something to make me forget the dye needles and in just a matter of moments I am to assume that is exactly what she delivered.

It seems like seconds later I awake in recovery.  You have some time to sleep in recovery, but of course you know they are bound by duty to wake you, hydrate, dress and roll you out of there in a set amount of time to, as the leaflet says, "make room for the next patient", and they do just that.   As I am waking they ask where I work and if I booked time off, and I reply that I took Monday and two of the nurses respond that I may want a little more time than that. Dr. S is nearby and they pose the thought to him and he nods from side to side, and the nurse tells me to be sure to ask to speak with him directly when I call to book my appt. to get the stitches out.  I'll see.  It's about 3:40 and we are on our way home.

We head home and make a stop at the pharmacy for the prescription they have given me, more treats promised by Dr. H.  John returns to the car with a wheel chair and says they won't release the prescription to him and wheels me in.   The girl seems embarrassed and says he didn't need to do that, we could have just called.   Funny thing, I don't carry the pharmacy number with me at all times.

Finally home; it's 4 P.M. .  All I want is my bed, some meds and lots of sleep.   I have come to terms with the fact that sleeping on my back is necessary for the next few days at least.   There is a 2-2 1/2 in. incision on the outside of each breast; just where it then curves to under the arm, and an approx. 6-8 in. incision from the excision done on my back.

Tomorrow is another day of healing.   It's been such a long day but I was in good hands, in the people around me and especially John, my rock and those caring for me at the hospital.   I couldn't have asked for better.

*there are some errors at the beginning of this piece, written early today whilst still a tad foggy and a little shaky, so I am going to leave them that way-somewhat relevant to the writings.

Sunrise and Surgical dreams

It's bitter cold
But I don't care.'s there
It fills my soul
With joyous light
this amber sunrise
Warm and brigt
a blended palette
pink, yellow orange red
Sinks into myheart
We laugh at the cold
morning sting
because the happy sunrise
makes me sing.

Cathy Nevin
Mar. 9, 2012
On route to the hospital 6;30 am

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Day 22 - I'm just pooped and ready for the "knock out round"!

Tomorrow is like a spa day...arrive early get primped and primed, a nice gown to don for the occasion; no real choice of colour or style, but that's o.k, I doubt I'll give it a second thought.
Hmmm, a little presentation, some nice sedatives and voila!  While I'm out they do some fancy work and when I wake up it's all behind me; IS going to be on my back after all...and under my arm!  I even bought a couple of new bras for the occasion; no underwires for this girl for a few days...or maybe I'll choose never again, besides they can wreak havoc with ones clothes dryer!   I have packed a little bag, had my last supper; presurgery and will look forward to a filling glass of apple juice before 6:30 a.m. tomorrow!   ...And for the next few days an agenda that looks more like a film festival of sorts!   Movies to attend; in my own bedroom, books to read and treats to tackle; like that's a problem!   I know I'll be sore, but it'll be fine and then the hardest part of all, waiting for the results...7 to 10 days!
This too will pass and what has already helped in this scary turn of events which still seems surreal is the people who are all around us, those I work closely with, those who are like family to me and those who have come forward in sharing their stories and letting me know it's o.k to be scared and that one just needs to take from this experience the details of it and all of the wonder and science in the care that I will benefit from and learning more about the very thing that has brought me to this point.   Big hugs to you all, you can't truly know how much you mean to me and sometimes how hard it is to share such a thing.   Reminds me of sending out links for fundraising, I always stop and imagine that person receiving the link and wondering if they will be like, "Oh man, I can't believe she sent this to me!"!   Good night.  Love you!  <3

Day 21 - Good Byes and I'd like to sucker punch Mother Nature

Today has been a very long day.   I spent the day thinking about our beautiful and beloved cat Cloud; soft as a ..., named by our son Chris.   Cloud is thirteen years old.  This morning I called the vet to book an appt. to have our friend Cloud euthanized, it's time to say good bye to him.   He was at the vets overnight Thursday last and we brought him home with the hope of things turning around, hoping to interest him in eating once again, but only a couple moments of hopefulness then dashed when he again refused to eat or vomited any morsel of food he managed to indulge in.   Each day I raced home to go to him in the hopes of positive change, looking stronger etc..   Of course no matter how prepared we think we are, we simply do not want to let go, until we realize for the sake of the one suffering must then let go.   He enjoyed some time outdoors with us following him and watching as he soaked up some sunshine Sunday afternoon and actually seemed to be "enjoying" himself, but then brought him in when the air felt a little cooler and the wind picked up.   Each night he either slept with our son,  or with myself and John always on the pillow curled around my head; as ususal, or would retreat to solace in the basement on a down filled sleeping bag on the futon.
We made our goodbyes and he was put to rest in a favourite brown cardigan John wore and that Cloud loved from the time he was very young.  John would put it on button the bottom four buttons and Cloud would climb into the sweater and fall asleep. A little cat nip sock and kitty treats.  May sound weird, but seemed very very appropriate for such a dear friend.  He is laid to rest in the Sedum garden in front of the little deck by the fire circle, where he could often be found sprawled out upon the deck in the warmest portion of a spring, summer or fall day.   He really was such a lovely, cuddly and personable cat, with people, other cats and even our Dash.  We loved him so and he is greatly missed.

On another note, Friday is my surgery and as it draws near and my nerves heighten a little, who should rear her UGLY head, ...pardon me, but the maliscious little bitch that is Mother Nature!  I should have known she would show up and make a less than wonderful time even less than wonderful time.   I'd like to sucker punch her!

What a day.  Good night. xo

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Lens to my soul (Shutterbug Blues)

I miss my notebook, when I am without one.
My voice when I can not find the words.
My emotions understood.
My discoveries in even the most familiar of places.
My eyes wanting others to see.
My camera takes me to the heart of my soul.

Cathy Nevin
Tues. Mar. 6, 2012


Waves roll, replenishing over and over.
Millions of particles of sand displaced again and again.
The wind ever pushing, until it crests.
Not unlike emotions.

Cathy Nevin
Tues. Mar. 6/12

Day 20 - Bring on MORE Happy's a tough day inside my head.

I wish I could stay home and just take care of Cloud...hold him for a couple of hours and make sure he knows just how much we love him.  I woke up about 4:30 a.m and Cloud had come to our room and was curled up right beside me.   I love him so.  We know we have a decision to make and it will leave us broken hearted but be the better for Cloud as you can see he is growing more weary with each passing day.

I called the hospital this morning to confirm surgery time on Friday, I must be at the hospital by 7 a.m (gasp), and surgery is on for 9:30 a.m. .  Oh well, I WILL get a little extra sleep there!  ;o)  Today is the first day in a while I have had perhaps too many thoughts in my head that allowed to stay for any length of time invoke tears and they do on my way home today.   I try to drown them out with music and OTHER thoughts!

 Today is a busy day with regular happenings and then packing more of the weekly prizes for The Great Literacy Race; our student is away today, then staying later this afternoon to completely pack allllll bags destined for the special wrap up event at the Library tomorrow.  We packed several hundred books into book bags sorted to specific classrooms in specific schools all around the county. DONE.

I head downtown with initial intentions of indulging in another nap at the Pier!  Today though I decide to go visit someone and when they aren't in, do for the last 15 minutes before start time (2), head to the pier.  The waves are fabulous and while there is some water splashing and spraying up over the end of the pier and would be lovely to park there and drift off I decide to park along the east side and watch the waves roll into the beach.  I could spend hours here!
A full day in the OEYC, and then off to our evening program Winners at St. Joseph's school!  Our few regular families show up and are so appreciative of the program and really don't want this to be our last night.  I will miss a couple of the kids in particular!   It's been a good run and I do enjoy this program.   Next up, the 10 weeks I will spend in the Kindergarten class at Beatrice strong.

Well, it's getting late, my eyes grow heavy and I should head off to bed.  John has already headed up.
Good night to all.   xo

Day 19 - Monday Monday!

Ugh, it's Monday.   ...on the upside, it's a movie night with two lovely ladies I've been catching up with these days.   Glenda, whom I attended high school with and Wendy who has known John for a number of years!  Both ladies work at Shoppers downtown Port Hope, their specialty the post office!
A little dose of laughs with these ladies will surely inject a little more light heartedness into my day!  ...and does.
We enjoyed the movie the Vow, and while some very poignant and sad moments made some of our own funnies along the way and afterward went to the Black Bean and Steak for a drink; regular drinks, just a little above regular prices!   Glenda was treated because the bar tender had been into the post office and Glenda had really helped him out ...apparently he made many many trips back and forth and really wanted to have her pop by for a drink, compliments of him!   It was a fun night, met some people who know Alex; my son and met some others who were just fun to be around.
I came home to find our cat Cloud all curled up downstairs and really felt awful having to disturb him for his medication.  He's been so good about it though.   Upon heading to bed took him up to tuck him in where the food, water and litter box are easily accessible.

I am very tired...of sadness, of worry, of so much.
With each passing day the idea of being put under anesthetic and not "thinking" about anything for even a while on Friday for my surgery, is feeling more like an invite to a spa-like event than surgery .

Day 18 - Watching while another enjoys the simple pleasure of the sunshine

Our Cloud isn't doing so well, seems happy but is very thin and we're just having a couple of days here at home with him.   This afternoon John took him outside as he keeps going to the door to go out.   John walked about the yard with him and then he settled among the cedars bathing in the sunshine along Tullios lane just below our house.  He just wanted to lay in the sun and seemed so very contented doing so.   Poor fellow as weak as he is knows what he truly wants, just to be outdoors.   John went in and I then stayed with him a while before bringing him inside when we felt the air getting a bit colder.

It's been a rough weekend.   In retrospect a rough few weeks.   A quiet day here on the home front just getting some things done around the house and keeping an eye on our dear feline friend Cloud.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Cloud has begun to eat on his own!   I sat and watched him eating enthusiastically and I was moved to tears.  A nice shedding  tears of joy!   Amen!

Farewell to Cabaret...Bittersweet for Cast and Crew

This is the last night for Cabaret to WOW the audiences and they; cast and crew, will be both happy and sad!   Following the show tonight they will greatly enjoy some well deserved celebrations!  Much reminiscing and highlighting of great moments, behind the scenes "oops" and such and just celebrating the coming together of a fabulous group of people all intent on doing their very best in delivering a chin dropping, knock their socks off performance to an audience ripe with anticipation!
Sad because while they are immensely weary, sleep deprived and desperate for a return to the daily grind that is "normal" life, it is the more recent routine of late nights, fast food, hours of choreography and line runs and the camaraderie in putting the show together that will be missed!   There is a real HIGH in being on stage, performing, delivering that which the audience wants and doing it well and after it is all sad and done there is a real LOW, in that it's over.
If you missed Cabaret I am then sad for you, ah, you should have seen it!   Every aspect of the show makes the Northumberland Players shine so bright and each of the cast a star in their own right!   Fabulously done!
Enjoy yourselves tonight Cabaret Cast and Crew...tonight is your night~ it's your Cabaret!  <3 xo

Day 17 - Hometown Treasures

Up early today, in order that we get in to get our "hairs" done.   I'd almost forgotten that's how our former "DAC" Graham used to respond when noticing our new freshly coiffed hair..."Hey you got your "hairs" done-looks nice!".
Cloud slept with Alex all night.  Alex; our eldest son, said he didn't like to see him in the basement alone all night and I was feeling the same way.  He still looked so "trippy" late in the evening and non-reponsive to our contact.  He seems a little better this morning but having given him his required meds is once again not happy with us.  He wants so badly to be outdoors and I had let him out earlier very briefly and moments later went out to follow him.  He was in our neighbors yard and when I called to him, happily came to me.

My hair now "freshly coiffed" I imagine looking a little better than I might otherwise on Friday upon waking from my scheduled surgery.  While I might still awaken drooling, groggy and looking "trippy", my "hair's" stand a better chance of looking "in place"!  LOL!  ...especially when the "not so hard to look at" doctor comes to call!...oh, and John! ;o)
 For a "perk me up" following surgery I have picked up some of the latest product from the Wicked Wik shop...body frosting.  The Mulberry is so very lovely!   Rachel; the shop proprietor, has everything you need for a little self indulgence,  take a minute or (30) opportunities where your bathroom becomes your spa.with soaps, bath bombs, candles, creams and more!

We also stopped by Bibelot, another of my most favourite stores!  One day when the livingroom is finally refinished I hope to indulge in a wee bit of shopping there to add a few new touches to the decor/atmosphere of the room.   First, the bedroom and diningroom. The livingroom is going to be a big job...ceiling to floor!
I venture in to Bibelot for greeting cards...such lovely designs Patience Brewster and so many others, as well as unique gifts, trinkets, treasures and books!   We have found beautiful calligraphy sets which we were happy to gift our son and just today more such finds...and I think I'd like a set myself! ;o)  It's always a pleasure to stop by and browse and a quick visit with Elizabeth Stefoff, the shops proprietor; she also has the help of daughter Jann and Deborah C. there as well.  I am loving the colour she has recently adorned the walls in, with the help of "Hank" whom I was just introduced to today and told he does a marvelous job of painting...and especially in tight quarters!

Last stop before coming home; and all of this before noon today, My Sister's Closet.   I have money on account there from Christmas...compliments of my wonderful husband John!   It just feels like I'm walking in and spending without thinking about cost, though today even if I were the deals are amazing!   Triple treat with three colours of tags on sale at 50 % off!   I end up with two new tops and a pair of jeans for $17.00 and money left in the account!  LOVE IT!  I'm stealing Scotia Banks' saying...."I'm richer than I think"!

Friday, March 2, 2012

Day 16 - One turn of the kaleidoscope.

I'm really going to need some happy thoughts this weekend. Our cat Cloud is home but I'm really not sure how this is going to go. Very thin but had eaten today, ultrasound showed no obvious tumours etc., likely combination malfunctions with liver/pancreas and intestines due to not having eaten. He has medicine to be given by suringe and we'll keep watch over him. There is one other option but it is both costly and very time have a feeding tube put in his esophogus; it may or may not work and is meant to be temporary.

He's not very happy with us as we just administered the first dose. I hope there is a turn around, he seems so frail. I hate to see him this way, just the way it pains us to see our children ill. Positive thoughts for Cloud. I just want to hug him all night. I hope he will take up his usual place on my pillow tonight.

I feel like I have had the wind knocked out of me, no energy and just completed depleted!

Chris may have some very exciting news shortly, but I'd rather wait until we have further information. As I told him today though, it's a little light shining at a time when there seems to be so much dark. He said why is everything happening to our family right now? All I could think was it's just the way life sometimes goes.

"There's a time for everyone, If they only learn, That the twisting kaleidoscope moves us all in turn."

Happy thoughts happy thoughts happy thoughts!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Day 15 - (a) HAIR away from Happy Thoughts

My day today doesn't pass without worrying about another family member, our cat Cloud, the eldest of our feline family.   He had an appt. with Dr. Shand this afternoon.
This evening I keep looking for him here at home and I know as I follow my bedtime routine I will check the porch rail for him at least once.   I know he is in good hands and will have medication this evening and likely a very good sleep.  They will have run blood tests to determine further his condition.   It was looking like there are liver disfunction as his skin and whites of his eyes are yellow.  At bedtime he always comes up to our bed, struts right past Dash; because he is the King of the house and can, then up onto my pillow and curls around my head.
  Good night Dear Cloud.

The rest of the day was alright nothing extraordinary to tell of, though was reminded by a dear friend of the amazing power listening to music through headphones can afford you in the happiness you feel and the strength you draw from that.   A few years ago I was one character in a most memorable cast of people for the Northumberland Players production of HAIR and spent many a night donning headphones and listening to the music over and over.   Often this involved also practicing the choreography to each piece.   In some manner, for a brief time, I owned our livingroom!  LOL!  It was so sad to see that production run come to an end as we truly became the tribe and indeed felt we were brothers and sisters and have maintained many of those connections!   Tonight that music was everything I didn't know I needed!   ...and John even ignored that I was singing out loud, while he watched the tv, in the same room!   That's why he's my Rock!...Maybe he should be my "Rambo" ...makes it through anything with me!  No ...I'll stick to my Rock...Rambo isn't one of my fave characters.
 I may be replacing Elton as my car pool tomorrow, taking the cast of HAIR along with me for a few days instead!   Tears of happiness stream while listening to HAIR...coupling the songs with the most wonderful of memories of being with some of the most amazing and beautiful people ever!

It's almost Friday and I look forward to the possibility of a "real" hair cut on Saturday morning at the hands of a trained professional, as opposed to "moi", doing a "home cut" beginning in the shower and ending in front of the bathroom mirror.    It could be moment from a horror movie...  "...a few moments alone in the bathroom when, as I open the drawer and am blinded by a glint of light reflected in a most shiny and sharp pair of scissors. Carefully and slowly I retrieve them and draw them up to where I can view them at their task in the mirror..."!  It's been since last August that I had a "real" haircut!
When people compliment me on my hair; assuming I had it professionally cut, I tell them not to do this again, because that only encourages me and gives me license/cause to cut my own hair again!

Well I am late getting to bed now, having been heading there from 10 p.m. each night, so I must go now and hope to have a good and full nights sleep; not always afforded me lately.
Good night to you.  xo

You're already there.

I LOVE YOU. You don't have to say I LOVE YOU to relay your love for someone.    If someone you are very close to , someone you've ...