Monday, April 26, 2010

A haircut makes some of the yucky go away



Long story short--My husband had to work so no time with my son. I just kind of did nothing this weekend. Everything I had planned was based around JJ.

To cheer myself up, I got my hair cut. It looks awesome. So awesome that included some photos. It is amazing how a simple cut and relaxer to the hair is such a pick me up. Plus, the lady who did my hair said my hair is very healthy. You could have knocked me over with a feather.

I worked some on Saturday and then had an impromtu photo session with my partner-in-crime and co-worker D. I am not a picture person but feel I do need some photos of myself. The cut looks awesome even if it was windy.
After two really good days after chemo, my mom feels like crap. The third through fifth days are really rough on her body. She has no appetite and aches. I feel so bad for her. But she is being quite a trouper.

On Sunday, I read the Sunday paper and watched a marathon of “The Hills.” The weekend wasn’t a total lost. And for the first time in awhile, I went grocery shopping. I have been grocery shopping at the Dollar General, Family Dollar and Dollar Tree because I couldn’t handle being in a grocery store. Those other stores are much smaller with less food. I went shopping yesterday and didn’t panic too much. Made a really good pasta salad and grilled chicken for lunch and dinner.

Mother’s Day is in two weeks. I am going home to see my mom and my son. As a gift to myself, I am taking JJ and I to see Iron Man2. I know he wants to see and so do I. I would feel bad seeing it without him. He is the perfect movie watching person. He thinks the whole experience is cool from buying the popcorn and drink to sitting in the comfortable seats. I am looking forward to it. Then I am going back to RR and then returning a few days later to keep my mom comfortable after the chemo. My brother had chemo company duty last weekend. I think my mom prefers me because I sleep in the bed with her and keep her company.

My first appointment with the new therapist is Thursday afternoon. I am taking a break between assignments. I hope to use this weekend to get back on the meds. I am handling things okay but I feel things shifting and starting to slide. I have a pair of pants that I use to judge if I have lost weight. If those pants fit perfectly, I am maintaining my weight fine but if I need a belt, things are not going well. I need a belt.

Daily Dose
1. Finding the perfect Mother’s Day present
2. Not stressing about things I can’t control in life.
3. Having a day just to veg and relax.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Tough as nails

My mom rocks! She had chemo yesterday and said she felt so good that she drove her car for the first time in months. And it's a stick shift and she has a broken arm. Amazing! And she isn't taking much morphine for pain. When I grew up, I want to be just like my mom. She fucking rocks! There I said it.

I finally settled on a therapist. My first appointment is next Thursday. I wanted an ED specialist but this would involved driving either an hour and half to two hours away. I found a doctor who is willing to work with me about ED and other issues (mom dying of cancer, pending divorce and missing my son). I am leaning strongly for going back on my meds. With the way things have been going, I need therapy and meds.

I did an interview at an assisted living center, which warmed my soul. Not only did I meet some really nice residents but two of the ladies in charge are thrift store junkies like me. We compared outfits and what stores they came from. In RR, there is cool consignment that has opened. It suits all budgets from $1-$100. You can go in with just five bucks and still come out with something nice. I am going to use my Silly Girl skills to see if the consignment store will set up a shopping day for the residents. I think they would really like that. I like using my powers for the forces of good.

I still haven't heard anything about my son visiting. I am pretty much waiting for the officially no. I think it sucks but that is a whole other post.

Daily Dose

1. My mom is good spirits and making egg custard!

2. Being able to help others

3. Finding a Virginian Pilot newspaper on the break room table. It's like it was just left there for me. In addition to pens, magazines and notebooks, I love newspapers! I am such a geek.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Sunday Sunday

It was busy week! I didn't realize I how much I missed this place. It is my home. Yesterday, I covered my first triathlon. It was so cool. It was considered a sprint triathlon because it consisted of a 300 yard swim, 14.8 mile bike course and 3.2 mile run. I am strongly considering finding a group so I can do the relay part of this event. Swimming is not my thing but I love running. But it has inspired me to stay healthy.

Yesterday, was a 12-hour day with triathlon and home and garden show. I am tired but I loved it. My mom is doing okay. She is having good and bad days. She has hardly know appetite.

Hopefully, my son will be coming for a visit this weekend. I am keeping my fingers crossed. It all depends on my husband's mood.

I have found a dentist who will help me restore my smile. With my insurance, roughly about four years and $3,400--I should have my smile back. ED did some serious damage do my teeth. I will have 17 teeth pulled since they can't be saved. I am so excited. This is motivation to keep the job.

Daily Dose

1. Finding a dentist!

2. Continuing to hold on and not give in to ED!

3. Watching the Lake House!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Back to my space


I have returned to work after being gone for a week. I was happy to get my mom settled and come up with a plan. But I am so glad to be back in my space and my world. I no longer fit in there.

She was so happy to be home. Since the weather is getting warm, she is going outside more. I think this will help improve her. Plus, I’ll check in a few times each day. I am still torn between working and taking care of her. But right now, she is doing okay and it is best we continue to live our lives.

Before returning home, I spent sometime with JJ. We watched a Wolverine dvd and played with dragons. I enjoy anytime I can spend with my son. Hopefully, next weekend, he will come to RR and see things here.

On my first day back, I got to cover an event outside where schoolkids learned about colonial times. I love outside events and seeing kids learn something. I had a great time. It made me realize how much I love writing.

Daily Dose

1. Sleeping in my own bed.

2. Spending time with my son.

3. Preparing for my son's visit.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Getting Out of Here

After being here a week and two days, my mom is getting ready to go home. She ate her breakfast with no complaints. I slept. I can find something to eat on the way home. Every two hours, my mom got up to use the bathroom. If she is up, I am up. Well, I need to go and make my final walk of the perimeter. It will be so good to get her home and settled in. Then I am going to spend sometime with my son tonight. And then I will be heading home tomorrow afternoon.

Daily Dose

1. She is going home!

2. She is semi-regular again!

3. Things can get back to somewhat normal.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Tales from the food cart

As I write this, I am eating a cup of butter pecan ice cream. In the background, is my mom is trying to eat her dinner. Dinner is a Greek salad with feta cheese, bananas peppers, olives and lettuce. There is chicken salad pita pocket and mushroom barley soup. Her meal is something people would pay a lot of money for at any of the resturants in the area. She hated it. It tasted okay to me.

When it comes to food, my mom is traditional and goes with the familiar. This experience has not been good for her. We are still at the hospital. At the last minute, her doctor decided she needed to stay one more day. She is not happy. This is the understatement of the year.

I have made the best of a interesting situation. I take two walks in the morning and evening of the perimeter. At the ice cream shop, I am known as the hospital chick. On their menu is 42 flavors. I have tried 28 of those flavors. It has been me, the recovering one, to convince my mother to try new things. I have to admit some of meals served to her were not my cup of tea. For lunch, there was a fish. I took one for the team while she ate my chicken fries (Chicken tenders in the shape of french fries). But the pound cake with blueberries was excellent.

In making my rounds today, I found more magazines, some really good sweet potato souffle along with excellent butter pecan ice cream.

One thing I have learned here at the hospital. People don't know elevator equiette. Correct me if I am wrong. If you are on the elevator and you arrive to your destination, you are suppose to be the first to get off the elevator. Not the 15 nurses waiting to get on. People don't know the equiette here at all.

When I look back on this experience, I will remember how feisty my mother was. And even with a broken arm, she refused to take any crap from anyone.

Daily Dose

1. Butter pecan ice cream

2. Mint Chocolate chip ice cream

3. Be able to look at the newborn babies and remember that feeling four years ago.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Feeling okay

After being here a few days, I have realized something. Everyone on this floor has some form of cancer and they are in different stages. Even though, my mother and I are driving each other crazy, I still have her awake, lucid and hanging in there. Some people here are not so fortunate or blessed. The lady acorss the hall is in constant pain. So much pain that my mother had me unplug her IV machine and help her across the hall to talk with her. She said my mother brighten her day.

Today has been interesting. I am really tired. You see I sleep when she sleeps. At night, my mom get up every two hours to go to the bathroom. Last night, I helped her to the bathroom but fell asleep before she was finished. She sat there patiently for 20 minutes because she didn't have the heart to wake me up. I felt really bad. She said it was cool because she has been a little difficult.

Foodwise, things have been pretty decent. For breakfast, she had a ham and cheese crossaint with breakfast potatoes. I had fruit and orange juice.

Lunch was suppose to have been turkey and dressing with strawberry shortcake for her. For me, it was a small the works pizza from Papa John's with buffalo wings. She didn't want her meal. She wanted mine. So we switched. I mean for the first time in days, she wanted to eat. And I wasn't going to stand in her way. The turkey and dressing was pretty good.

Dinner was a wash. I think it was suppose to be barbecue chicken with snow peas and rice pilaf. I had a cesar salad and felt bad because I didn't want to share. My mom finished the buffalo wings along with yogurt, macaroni and cheese and sweet potato casserole.

Good news--We might be getting out of here tomorrow. I realize I am not a big fan of Charlotte. I do a morning and evening walk of the perimeter carefully. I am glad my mother and I had this time together. We had a chance to talk about some stuff. It scares me that she is sick. So I am taking all of these moments.

Daily Dose

1. Papa John's has the best pizza.

2. We're getting out of here soon.

3. I love my mommy very much!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Perks of being a magazine loving pen freak


We are still here at the hospital. My mom is getting better but grumpier. She's ready to go home. Today, I left the hospital campus and ventured to a Rite Aid. My mom wanted a pedicure. Or as close to one I could give. Next to the Rite Aid, a Books-A-Million with a Chick-fil-A nearby. Cue the angels and light shining from heaven. I was a happy Silly Girl.

So for lunch, my mom had chicken wings and dirty rice from Bojangles while I had my favorite Chick-fil-A meal. Her turkey club wrap looked at us while we ate. For dinner, I advised my mother to try White Chicken Chili in a bread bowl for dinner from the hospital. She took one bite and spit it into her napkin. I went to hospital cafeteria and got her fried chicken, black eyed peas, mashed potatoes and cornbread. She was happy. I got the chili. It wasn't bad. Could have been seasoned better but not bad.


The picture I have posted is from JJ. He wrote his name--JJ. I am so proud of my baby.
Daily Dose (Perks of living in a hospital)

1. There is always a newspaper lying around.

2. All types of free coffee, tea and hot chocolate in the waiting room.

3. Magazines. There are tons of them on tables all around the hospital.

4. Those miniature cans of soda.

5. If you are nice to a nurse or cna, they will be even nicer to you.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Livin' the hospital life

I can work a 12 to 13 hour day with no problem. But I am about to go crazy here in this hospital. I don't like changes to my routine. When my mom eats breakfast, lunch and dinner, she expects me to eat also. Hospitals feed patients earlier than real life. Plus, I am not as open minded about food as I like to think. But I have been drinking more water just because it is good for me and my mom stares when I drink more than one soda a day.

I have explored the hospital so this morning I ventured out to the surrounding streets. A community college is nearby so I explored the bookstore and the library.

My mom is not to happy with me right now. I told the nurse about a wound (the size of a quarter) under her arm from radiation. It looks and smells bad. My mom and brother thought it would just get better on its own. She's in a hospital that is one of the best in the state and nation. I spoke up and they are pissed at me. For awhile today, I was wish I was home in my motel room.

Daily Dose

1. Beautiful weather with crazy temperatures

2. Duke won the NCAA. I was one of a few to pick them to go all the way.

3. Orange soda and oatmeal raisin cookies make things a little better.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Role reversal



This is a picture of my nephew Devyn and my son, JJ, playing together. They are quite a pair.
There has been a change in plan. My mother is still in the hospital. She took a bad fall in her hospital room yesterday afternoon. She fell on her already broken arm and because she was alone, no one knew she had fallen. She laid there for awhile and had an "accident." Meanwhile, I am in RR and my brother had went home to take a quick shower. We both felt horrible. So I am here now at the hospital with her until she is released.

I have difficult decision to make--stay with my dream job in RR or move home and care for her. I had the talk with my editors and they are willing to do anything to keep me. My brother is doing best he can but it isn't fair on him to shoulder all of this. Tomorrow, I will talk with the staff to see if there is any options for my mother. She receives her cancer treatments at one of the hospitals in the area.

It is hard. It feels like the roles are reversed. Plus, my mom and my brother are trying to give their input about my marriage. It has been a long day for Silly Girl. I know this hospital better than I know the town of RR. The best things to eat in the cafe. Figuring out the coffee machine in the waiting room.

Daily Dose

1. Spending time with my mommy.

2. Getting a chance to bite the ears off of the chocolate bunny.

3. Eating a pot pie from KFC.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Dreaming of my pillow

I have been fantasizing about sleep. I dreamed about sleeping last night. I am tired. This has been a crazy crazy week. It is Easter weekend, which means Easter Egg hunts and church events. I have the weekend off. This is good.

My mother has been in the hospital since yesterday morning. My brother and her decided not to tell me until after I had gotten off from work. They didn't want me to worry or try to get on the road. It is combination of the chemo drugs and not having much of an appetite. She said she is doing fine and for me to stay put.

I love my job. In almost eight months, I have gotten a ton of experience. I would like to stay here awhile longer but I might have to move back home. My brother can't handle this all by himself. My dad isn't my brother's dad and my aunt is almost 70. I have started looking for jobs closer but there aren't any. And employment options are pretty limited down there. Fast food is an option but I really don't need to work around food. The outcome is never good with me working in a resturant. It seems to be a major trigger for me. I guess I will continue to monitor the situation. I want to be Lois Lane but at the same I want to be a good daughter and mother.

Daily Dose

1. I slept in until 7 a.m.

2. I am improving my water intake.

3. When I grew up, I want to be just like my mommy.

My new smile

I have great news. Last Monday (April 10), I got my new teeth.  They have definitely been a game changer. It is weird being able to smil...