Sunday, June 28, 2009


Happy one year anniversary to me! Happy one year anniversary to Vic! Happy one year anniversary to our new normal! [groan]

What a bumpy ride this year has been. No pun in intended. You know. . Bump, Lump. Lump gets you lumpectomy. So if you have a bump, do you get a bumpectomy?

It seems a lifetime rather than one year since diagnosis. Much has changed, but most things have remained the same.

Vic and I are leaving today for a 3 days at the ocean. Rejuvenation. Celebration.

A couple of pics of the hair growth. Nothing straightens it out and makes it spikey. Nothing. I'm happy to have it - that bald look isn't comfortable.


Thursday, June 18, 2009


Quick update on mammogram:

There is "architectural distortion" with no microcalcification per se. The breast radiologist's reports indicates that the mammogram does look different from the 2008 mammogram and believes it is from the lumpectomy. The distortion is about where the surgical scar is, so that makes sense. The oncologist stated that they are being conservative by asking for a unilateral mammogram in six months. . . just to confirm that the change in the breast is from surgery and not from anything else. About 90% of the time, the architectural distortion is from surgery, and particularly at the lumpectomy site.

So in six months, I'll have a MRI and mammogram. Until then, I'll just live my life distortedly (no, that word does't exist in And very happily distortedly.

Be at peace my friends,


Wednesday, June 17, 2009


So, when is okay really okay? That ponderable was with me last night and all of today.

Yesterday was my first mammogram since diagnosis. I didn't realize how uptight I was until the tech said several times, "Relax your shoulder". I did my best to do positive speak to the worries and thought I WAS relaxed.

I think I had at least 2 and maybe 3 compressions on the non-cancer breast; at least 4 or maybe 6 on the cancer breast (or former cancer breast). Not sure the exact amount -- I was too uptight! :-)

Before the tech left to review the pics with the radiologist, she said don't be concerned if we tell you that we'll see you in six months. I appreciated the warning, but also told her that every 3-4 months, someone or something would be looking at that breast. So she left the room to confer with the radiologist.

A few minutes later, she stepped back into the room and said it was "okay" and that I could go have a seat in lobby to wait for the blood draw. I took it to mean "the films are okay and you have no cancer". Denial is such a great thing, isn't it!? In talking with my sweet husband last night about my day, I told him that it was "okay". I know he didn't mean to plant a negative seed when he said, "Okay just means okay - they don't need anymore pictures".

Update on the updates . . . deep breath and a big sigh; yes, this will end someday. I've been having pain in my left big toe but couldn't find the source. I discovered that the nail has a horizontal crack about 2/3 from the top. There is a fair amount of white on the toe nail - similar to how the fingernails looked when they were lifting. I just never put the two together. pain = chemo nail.

Vic and I meet with the oncologist tomorrow afternoon. I'm hoping that the Vitamin D levels have risen significantly. I've been taking a 50,000 IUs pill once a week and 4,000 the other 6 days.

We will also meet with the geneticist and the research coordinator for the neuropathy ointment. It will be interesting to find out if I did have the real thing! Not sure why we need to meet with the geneticist, but kind of glad that we are. I'd like to know if my BRCA gene variant has shown in anyone else's testing.

More news tomorrow! Okay?



Sunday, June 7, 2009


"That" Mammogram
361 days ago

First Surgery
301 days or 43 weeks ago

Last Chemo
185 days or 26 weeks ago

Last Radiation
126 Days or 18 weeks ago

Working 1.5 hours in the yard yesterday was amazing. I'm paying for it today with some tightness on one side and a killer of a headache. I don't really care about the pain - just excited that I had stamina for that long. Just a few months ago, it would have been 10 minutes.

The fingernails never did fall off. After they started lifting, I kept them filed very close to the skin which helped. Wearing bandages on the nails while keyboarding also helped. Currently, one nail is about 1/3 of the all white dead stuff; the others about 1/4. Just a few months ago, the nails were two-thirds all white.

Toe neuropathy is pretty much gone. I have days where they do burn, but it usually follows alot of walking in non-supportive shoes or attempting to wear heels at work. My body hasn't done high heeled shoes ever since I feel down a few cement stairs - face first - in 1990. Ankles were mangled.

Call me Poodle. The nape area is 2 inches, extremely curly, so much that no product will keep it straight . .or slightly straight. The nape hair looks to be 1/2 inch in length - it's that tight of a curl. My hair has been straight all my life, well, other than those ugly perms in the 1980s and 1990s. I went to my hairdresser a week ago to see if she had a magic potion to help style the hair. I walk into the salon, she greets with me with "Oh My Gawd!" and starts laughing. Say what? She was shocked to see the curls and waves, she couldn't help herself from laughing. Heck, I laugh every morning!

Eyelashes have lost their length again. I'm back to the short short that it isn't worth putting mascara on.

Port incision has healed nicely and no problems with it. Hallelujah! I am so glad that thing is G.O.N.E.

June 16th is the next blood draw and first mammogram since diagnosis. I will ask the oncologist about markers and all the new research on treatment for TNBC on June 18th.

Hope you all have a great week!