Thursday, July 28, 2011

Be Careful What You Wish For.....

What feels like lifetimes ago I had a classmate that had his tonsils removed and when he returned to school he told me about how he had to go to the hospital to have it done.  He said there were nurses that took care of him and had to come when he pushed a button.  Even if all he needed was another blanket or the television station turned, they had to come.  He continued on to tell me how he got all of the popsicle's and ice cream that he wanted.  As for the school work that he was missing, like the daily black board "pop quiz" questions or writing what seemed like endless lines of definitions....he got worksheets that contained far less work than what we did in class.

I remember thinking how nice that sounded without thinking about the fact that you needed to be sick or having surgery to be in the hospital.  So I went home and that night I laid in bed looking out the window at the clear night sky above and made a wish. "I wish that I could go to the hospital".

Sunday, May 15, 2011

It's funny how 2 1/2 months feels like a lifetime ago...

If I had to describe what has gone on since my last post at the end of February with only one word I'd have to go with....UNBELIEVABLE.

After 5 1/2 months of remission I received a phone call around March 17th from my oncologist advising me that my last set of labs drawn the first week of March were "questionable" and I needed to come in and see her on March 21st instead of waiting until my April 16th appointment.  I was feeling okay at the time of the phone call.  A little fatigue but nothing to be alarmed about.  I'd had a cold for a few weeks but nothing crazy.  I wasn't bruising easily, there were no petechia on my skin, I wasn't running any fevers and outside of dealing with the unrelenting pain of my spleen and the daily issues with nausea and vomiting I was managing to have a somewhat normal life again.  I wasn't panicked.  It was just another doctors appointment.  Another check-up to get through.  No big deal.

Monday, February 28, 2011

The dollars and sense of it....

Today my husband came home early from work for the first time in almost a year.  I would've loved to think it was to spend more time as a family but unfortunately that is not our reality of late.  With my diagnosis, the loss of my income and the added cost of medications, gas back and forth across the lake each week for appointments and the day to day expenses that just come with life Jon has had to take every opportunity to make extra money.  What does he get for this extra hard work?  Well this week it seems he's run himself down and ended up with a bit of exhaustion and the flu. 

Before I dosed him with NyQuil and sent him to bed in a surgical mask he told me a little about his day.  Particularly about a meeting they had at the dealership regarding health insurance.  For those of you that don't know, or are just now beginning to read my blog my family and myself were uninsured at the time of my diagnosis.  This, unfortunately, in today's economy and job market is not an unusual thing.  Basically we gambled in order to cut corners to pay bills and other debt (most from past medical issues when I did have insurance) and just couldn't afford the nearly $1000 per month premium to insure our family of four.  Not to mention what we would have paid out of pocket before meeting the $5000 deductible.  Then of course there were the pre-exsisting conditions that would keep me uncovered but still paying premiums for the first year. 

It was an expense we couldn't take on.  It was a gamble that we took and on April 27, 2010  and we lost....big!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Going from bad to castor oil.....this is how you rock Valentine's Day in the Land of "L"!

In an effort to be compliant with my new GI doctor and his "let's cross all the t's and dot all the i's" mentality of trying to find out why I've spent 2/3 of my day nauseated, vomiting and in gut wrenching abdominal pain (could it be the enlarged spleen....maybe??) for the past 4 1/2 months I spent my Valentine's Day eating water based foods (pass the jello and watermelon) until 7p and then having to down a cocktail of castor oil and orange juice to "cleanse" for the upper GI series the following day.  

Sure I could have written about the experience of downing the castor oil...but how fun would that have been?  So in order for you to really understand the hell fun that myself and my family endured I decided to let Jon document the experience.  Enjoy my suffering.....

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

My coping mechanism is busted....

If I ever believed that the hard part was over now that I'm a full 4 months into clinical remission....I was sadly mistaken.  The "hard part" is no longer marked with hospital stays or poor blood counts but instead marked with emotionally charged moments of crying inexplicably and wondering "what now" and "what's next".  Some who have not been here would say...what next is to live your life.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Penny's Thoughts on "Life in the Land of "L"

My dog Penny, aka my third child, has been a pretty permanent and recurring presence on Southern Fried Life so I am proud to announce her debut on Life in the Land of "L".  Here's Penny's perspective on life with and owner who has Leukemia......

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Like all transformations that aren't surgically based...that took F-O-R-E-V-E-R....

You'd think my very first post of this new and REMISSION filled new year (I'm totally working that "if I say it or write it then it's true") would be about my health and the changes that are taking place in it.  Ahhh ha ha's all about how I just spent the better part of 3 hours giving "Life in the Land of L" a little 2011 face lift.   

No Botox.  No Restalyn.  No strange Angelina Jolie man those can't be your real lips lips.

In case it be deemed that 2011 is the year of the new, improved and slightly look based Jessica...let me assure you that I am writing this blog in a most natural state....

Monday, December 13, 2010

This...that...and my mother!

August 1 - October 13, 2010   

Once again, I've fallen behind in my posting and I really wanted to share this with you guys.  Hope you enjoy and hopefully in 2011 I can get on task with writing on a regular's to hoping.....

"Damn you cancer and your ability to sap my energy, steal my will to wear things other than pj's and  taking my hair and then letting it grow back with what seems to be a permanent bald spot front and center!  But mad props for the weight loss...haven't been this size since 2004!!"

I know that it has been a long, long, L-O-N-G while since posting and I had said somewhere either in a past post or in my chemo induced brain fog that I wouldn't cease to post and in a sense "let the cancer win".  I apparently had seriously underestimated exactly how tired one gets in the actual moment to moment battle against a disease that is hell bent on destroying me the way that I destroy jewels in my beloved time passer Bejeweled Blitz.

It's been a wild and crazy ride since the post at the end of July. 

Friday, December 3, 2010

Tis the season to give...The Fresh Air Fund

To even try to list the number of things that I've taken for granted over my now close to 34 years of life would make for a very long and probably boring post.  I could go on about how I believed that air conditioning was free and everyone had it because the days in Florida were too hot for it to be a "luxury" item.  As I've gotten older, I've learned the hard way that the line between need and want can be easily skewed.  My kids for instance are blessed with green areas to play in that aren't overrun with the toxicity of industry.  We spent last Friday night with a friend and his family roasting marshmallows out by a bonfire and have plans to do so again for the New Year.

My children can walk two streets over and be immersed in a wooded area that is fit for exploring that when you are in the middle of it you almost feel like you are worlds away from the bustling little city that we live in.  Every child deserves the chance to be surrounded by nature.  To nurture the explorer in us all is one more way to keep the innocence meter full.  As the giving season has now commenced I urge you, my readers, to think outside the box and give to The Fresh Air Fund.
I hope you all continue to have a wonderful Holiday Season.

Much Love,

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Don't make promises you can't keep, but more importantly...never say never

Wow, in reference to the last post I made on this blog,  ya know the one of "I'm gonna post again within the next 24hrs.  I promise" seems that I think 24hrs is somewhere in the ballpark of approximately 42 days!  Don't you wish you ran on my time schedule?? Just think of all the things you could accomplish!

All joking aside, my last post back in September really was meant to be followed up on with another post just a mere 24hrs later.  True story.  I had been working on a piece that unfortunately had taken almost 7hrs.  It seems that once I was diagnosed with leukemia whatever bladder function I had remaining from pregnancies, surgeries and the mere cruel workings of that bitch mother nature had gone out the proverbial window leaving me with a need to pee every 5 seconds opposed to my normal once ever 20 minutes.  Thus taking my writing time and quadrupling it!  Add in nausea and my mother coming to check to see if I was breathing, awake, hungry or did I mention breathing and a normal session that I could have knocked out in an hour or two tops without so much as 1/2 dozen trips to the potty (usually with laptop in's not like I haven't done it before, example "Tales from the Crapper") had been turned into an arduous non multi-tasking catastrophe.

Being diagnosed with leukemia SUUUCKSSSSSS!!!!  Being diagnosed with leukemia and NOT being able to write and express my frustrations with previously stated disease SUUUCKSSSSSS ASSSSSSSS!!!!