Saturday, October 31, 2009

One Chemo Down

I had my first round of chemo therapy yesterday with no bad effects. All is going well. My appetite is good, I slept well, and while I expect to have some down days in the next few days, I was pleasantly surprised to be feeling fine after this first round.

Angela, of course, has been the chief driver and nurse through all of this, and she's wonderful about it.

Today we were outside a fair amount of time as it was a beautiful day. I harvested produce from the garden - kale (my favorite veggie), green onioins (yum!), cherry tomatoes, radishes, and chives for baked potatoes tomorrow night with the kids. I'll be fixing my last eggplant tonight, and I have a load of beets for veggies through next weeks too. I helped pick up branches after she cut off those that were hanging too low to use the riding lawn mower. That was the first real exercise since my surgery. About all Nurse Nora (Angela) will let me do is the laundry and empty the dishwasher, so helping load up the trailer felt pretty good. She hauled them over to our big dumpster, so I really didn't do much. I don't think it was even enough to be sore in a couple days. after all that activity, Cassandra, my smallest Bichon, and I took a nap together on the patio glider.

It was a fine day.

Happy Halloween to all!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Race for the Cure

After a really terrible experience at Community Hospital's Cath Lab while getting my port put in for my Chemotherapy, I'm happy to report that the next Cancer-related item on my list was a great success. The Susan B. Kommen Race for the Cure was today, and four of us retired Fresno Bee (newspaper) gals joined seven other mutual friends for the one mile walk portion. The team captain recently found out she is pregnant, Donna had her cancer surgery two weeks ago, and I had my port put in two days ago, so we didn't think we should overdo it. The others agreed, and all did the one-mile walk. There were more than 6,000 people who participated in the Race for a Cure, most of which did the actual RACE part. It started at 6:30 a.m. The winner did the 5 miles with a 4.68-minute mile, which was pretty darn good! There were also shorter races, I believe. At any rate, I arrived at 9 in time for the awards. The rest of the group joined me in time to honor the survivors, of which Donna and I were included. There were probably 2,000 women who walked across the stage and took their seats in a show of solidarity that was very moving. We then moved on to the walk, which was easy and quickly done. Paula took a fall and scraped up her arm, but she's fine. Yes, we got it tended to at their first aid station. Angela was signed up to go, and donated her $20, but stayed home to do the lawn. We have to take one of our dogs up to Davis to see the super doctors up there, so she felt the lawn had to come first. Of course, she was super solicitous in helping me get ready and doubly so when I came home. She was concerned I might be overtired. Hardly! But she insisted I take a nap, which I gladly did. She's the responsible one, and it's a good thing, as I ended up sleeping for two hours. Evidently, I was more tired than I thought. Her point: "it has only been two days since your port surgery." I'm glad I have my own private nurse, and that's another Best Thing About Being Married to a Transsexual!

Sunday, October 18, 2009


Boy, there is just no way to feeling settled with Cancer. The bottom line is that Angela is about the only thing that's normal around here! She's my rock, my primary supporter, and cheerleader. How many Best Things About Married to a Transsexual can I list? Loads (!) - especially since the diagnosis. Having cancer is having one doctor appointment after another with scans and lab tests in between - and I haven't even started the Chemo or Radiation yet. The surgery went great and poor Angela is doing double duty on everything - yard work, housecleaning, and all sorts of just general helpful things. She's a blessing in so many ways. There are so many things one needs to learn, and there are only a few days to absorb it all and make critical decisions. I was expecting radiation after surgery, but not chemo. Now, chemo is in the mix and starting "soon." I had one bad lymph node, and some "suspicious cells" in two more, so we're fast approaching the Port or No Port decision. I was all for just following my doc's advice, and going with whatever she suggested, but after some research, I'm struggling with info overload. I've got a call into her to discuss not having the port done, and asking about at least one of drugs I'm supposed to take. None of the chemotherapy drugs are "nice," to put it mildly. They all have terrible side effects and long-term after effects. So, hang in there with me. I promise to keep after this blog. I just want to say how much I love having Angela around to share my thoughts, worries, and all the joy she brings me.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Whew! I'm glad that's over!

Surgery's over, and I'm doing fine. Now it's on to the next phase: finding out the results. I'm not good about waiting, but I'm stuck doing so for now. It'll be Wednesday or Thursday before the docs will be able to tell me the results of the lymph tests. Of course, the treatment plan depends on the outcome, so everything is back in limbo for a short while. I liked it a lot better when things were more concrete: "this is what we are going to do." Oh well. The good news is I'm feeling fine and improving each day. Angela, better known as my nurse, is on top of everything. She's doing laundry and draining my drains, she's tending the lawn and dusting the furniture, and she's reaching down everything I need that's above my head and picking up everything I want that weighs more than two pounds. She's a joy and a godsend all rolled in to my own very special T! What more could I ask?! I've got the best of all possible worlds. She's always there when I need her, and all those things are just more of the Best Things About Being Married to a T!