Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Three down, Thirty-two to go...
Well, so far, so good. I have had three treatments now and it only takes a few minutes and I am on my way again. It is just the trek to go there every day for the next 6 1/2 weeks that is aggravating to me right now. It is messing up my entire life's schedule. If I want to get my nails done, I have to schedule it around my radiation treatments. Maybe I need to change the time for the treatments. I had scheduled them for 2:00 every day, but that is proving to ruin my entire afternoon.

Damn it! Why am I complaining? I should be grateful for the fact that I don't have to go through Chemo. So what if I can't get my nails done when I want to. There are a lot worse things in life! I could be loosing my hair and throwing up my guts for heaven's sake and feeling like warm crap! So, Cindy, stop complaining and get on with it. WAAAH~ WAAAH~ WAAH~

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Saturday, October 25, 2008
Ready? Set? GO!
I have been preparing for this for the last two months and now we are at the jumping off point. So here is the scoop.

Back in June, I had a regular, yearly, screening mammogram. I am a strong advocate of having that yearly checkup. Anyway, a few days later the doc called me and told me that, just like last year, I had an abnormal area on the mammogram. Last year, they had found some calcifications and did a core biopsy. A few days later they called and said that it was nothing to worry about. Completely benign. Yay!

This year, however, when more calcifications showed up, I had to have another core biopsy. This time, it turned out to be Cancer. When I got the call (while I was driving on the interstate) I was stunned to say the least. I immediately called Tom to tell him what the doc had said. I couldn't see his face when I told him, but I believe he was just as stunned as I. We had to go see the doctor that afternoon. It is scary enough when they say the "C" word, but when they say, "I want to see you this afternoon to discuss your options," it really sounds bad. Of course, at that point, I was terrified.

After visiting with my doc that afternoon, I learned it was not as bad as my wild imagination had it. I had been diagnosed with Ductal Carcinoma in Situ or DCIS for short. From there I had to make a decision of either a mastectomy or a lumpectomy. After much turmoil and about 200 questions and internet research later, I chose the lumpectomy.

The first part of having that done was to have an MRI done on both breasts to make sure there were no other areas of concern. There weren't. Whew!
The lumpectomy was done on August 20th. Since then, I have been working with a radiation oncologist at Mary Byrd Perkins Cancer Center to prepare for 35 treatments of radiation therapy.

First was to have a CT scan. That happened Monday, almost two weeks ago. They lined me up on the scan table and had me lay on a huge purple bag. When they got me positioned the way they wanted me, they vacuumed the air out of the purple bag and it formed to my body. They placed my name on the bag and now, when I go for treatment, I will lay on that bag so that my body will be in the exact same position every time. They also drew lines and x's on my body so that the x-ray machine can be lined up in the same position. It looks a little bit like targets on my body. They covered those with tiny plastic covers to keep soap and water from washing off the marks.

Yesterday, I had to go back in for the final x-ray line up. They had my purple bag ready for me and sure 'nuf, it was still molded the way it was two weeks ago. I laid on it and got in the correct position. Then the x-ray maching started moving around me. The technician called out coordinates to the other technician, did some final calculations, drew more marks on me and put on new little plastic covers and told me to come back Monday and we will get started with the actual radiation.

So after two months from surgery, I will finally begin 35 radiation treatments on Monday. I will have to go 5 days a week for 7 weeks to complete this part of my treatment. I have gotten READY, been SET and now will GO! Please keep me in your prayers and I will keep you posted as I go along.

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Sunday, October 19, 2008
Washington Parish Fair
Tom and I met Heather and Allen in Franklinton to attend the Washington Parish Fair. I never realized what a big deal this is to the residents of this area of Louisiana. Also people come from miles around to join in the fun.

As we entered the Fair grounds yesterday, we were assaulted with the multitudes of fragrances of all the different foods being prepared as well as the odors of all the animals that are brought in for the rodeo and other contests and exhibitions.

I could smell cotton candy, smoked turkey legs, gumbo made with pheasant, quail and andouille. That was yummy gumbo. There was also steamed boudin, cane syrup being made, corn being groud for cornmeal, and huge round cheese blocks being sliced. What a terrible time to have a tiny stomach. I bought some of the gumbo, two turkey legs, a slice of cheese. No, I didn't eat all of that, instead, I brought it all home for us to eat today and tomorrow.

There ware masses of people everywhere. Bands were playing in several areas, people dancing and eating. Families were laughing and playing. It was wonderful!

I took some pics to share with you guys.
Heather waiting in line for her slice of cheese. She talked about it for two weeks! LOL

This is a pile of sugar cane they use to cook down and make thick cane syrup. I love it.

These ladies put on a show for us and then invited the audience to participate with them.

This is a bunch of smoked turkey legs. I could smell them a block away and started asking people where they were. They sent me right to them. YUMMY!

This is a Texas Long Horn bull. He was quite bored, but you could sit on him and have your picture thanks.

Below is the last, but definitely not least, image. It is something you might not forget for a while......This is the "Largest Hog in the world". He was about 10 feet long and 4 feet wide, weighed 1500 pounds and had quite a large........let's just say 'rear' end. 'Nuf said.

Saturday, October 18, 2008
My New Look!
My friend, Terri, designed me a new look for my blog. I love it. She even put a pink ribbon on it in memory of my being a Breast Cancer Survivor. That's awesome Terri, Thanks!

The weather here is so nice today. Beautiful vividly blue skies, a light breeze, and temps in the low to mid seventies. What a wonderful fall day.

Tom and I, Heather and Allen, are going to the Washington Parish Fair this afternoon. With the weather so beautiful, it should be a really nice day to go. I had a steroid injection in my back yesterday, so I am bringing my wheelchair or my push-n-sit, so I won't have to do all that walking.

LSU is playing again tonight, so we have to get home fairly early. I know Tom doesn't want to miss the game. Last week's game was hardly worth watching, but we are going to do better tonight. I know it.

See you on the winning side!
Monday, October 13, 2008
Getting my marks!
I am finally getting started with the radiation treatment program. Last week we met with the Oncologist and had first consultation. I liked her immediately. She is very personable and very down to earth.Smiles

Anyway, today I had to go for the planning session. They did a CT scan and put black marks all over the front of me. Then they covered the marks with waterproof clear plastic so they won't wash off. They also created a 'cradle' that has the imprint of my head and arm so that I will be in the same position for each treatment. All of that only took about 30 minutes.

Now the doctor will look at the CT scan and make a 'map' for treatment. They will call me when that is done and set up the appointment for my first treatment. Each treatment will take about 10 minutes. I have to have 30 to 35 treatments, then I will be all done.
As of now, I am a cancer SURVIVOR! Pink Ribbon

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Wednesday, October 01, 2008
Practice makes perfect.....
Practice patience as a means to an end.

I have learned something very important to me. Never pray for patience. God has a great since of humor. He will definitely give you things to do in which you can practice patience. Now I just pray for tolerance.