Cowgirl Up!!! ... Does Horse Poop Cause Cancer??

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

11 12 13... Numbers and Nonsense

Just had to write a blog entry on 11-12-13 !!!

Not a whole lot to update on except that I started my Dexamethasone steroids last Friday with a few very funny adventures! My Docs are starting me out slow at 20mgs weekly (as we are still consulting about my treatment options), compared to my 40mg 4 days on, 4 day off back in 2010.
Actually I was supposed to have already completed 2 - 3 cycles by now, but all my recent illnesses prevented that. So my first round of Roids was quite the sweet ride! My body revvvved up and I actually felt really good! Surprisingly, very good as a matter of fact!

I took the 5 pills
Ate some breakfast
And waited to freak out!

No freak out! Just revvved up! Felt good to feel good for a change! I've been waning and decreasing in energy lately, feeling rather fatigued often and always sickly in the last several months since Myeloma has resurfaced and dragged me down again.

So....
Jim and I went to lunch and I was actually hungry, but I didn't steroid-order the whole entire menu... just a tame healthy greens salad and spicy edemame. I remember now from before, I liked foods with a bite, while on Dex. We then ran a few errands, came home, did our ranch chores... and I was stilllllllllll fullllllllllllllllllll of ENERGY !!! Whoooo hoooooo, let the roid-rage begin!

By this time, is was dark out, but that didn't stop me from walking laps and laps and laps and laps and laps around the barn. I registered close to 11,000 steps on my pedometer for the day!! Yippeee for feeling good!! Took a Benedryl to send me off to sleep... and prevent me from crazy steroid snacking!!! No "moon-face", roid-belly for me!!!

Woke up feeling a bit dizzy and dehydrated with a slight headache, but overall ok! With how pumped up I was feeling, Jim and I decided to venture out for more errands and drive my sweet Bug!!! Generally I would be hesitant to compete for road space on a Saturday in my "tin can Beetle" with the crazy fast drivers in our area, but Dex gave me clutch-shifting confidence and off we went!

I don't even remember all the errands we ran, but we finished off with a refreshing stop at Jamba Juice and that's when the roid-rage strength fully kicked in!!!
Since my lil ol Bug is a 1974, no remote locks of course... so when I went to unlock my door manually... I totally BROKE THE KEY IN THE LOCK!!! No Joke!!! Broken right in half!!!!
Fortunately I had previously let Jim in first on the passenger side (as he was holder of the Jamba Juices since there aren't "modern" conveniences such as cup holders in ol Beetles!!!), so he was already inside when I shrieked, "OMG!!!! Jim!!!! OMG!!!! I frikn broke the key in the lock!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
Jim thinks I'm teasing, as I've been kinda silly all day, but I managed to pull out the broken pieces and show him the broken evidence!!! He can't believe what he's seeing in my hand!!!

Roid rage at it's best right here !!!! CRAP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! what to do now!!!


I called our son Scott, and thankfully he was home and was able to find the even older thinner SPARE key right where I thought it was, and he came to rescue us!!! Can you even picture this? Jim's sitting in the Bug sipping his Jamba juice laughing and shaking his head, and I'm sitting on the curb by a planter, thinking OMG, this really can't be happening! I BROKE the ignition key in the door lock!!!! We can't drive!!! We're hostages of an ol relic car I bought on a feverish whim!!! We're stuck in a parking lot!!! What if we were far away??? What is wrong with me, I ponder!!! Getting an antique car and thinking nothing of it... thinking it will be no problem, like driving around "back in the day" won't even be an issue! Hello Julie... aren't you too old for these silly adventures... you've got CANCER and you're embarking on some serious medical treatments and you're driving around in an unpredictable 40 year old VW beetle!!

Jim distracts my thoughts with, "Hey Dear... what's that wildlife that just crawled by you?" Whaaaaat? Where? OMG I look to my left on the curb, and off slithers a giant shinny cockroach!!! I think it had crawled right up and over me!!!! OK, that does it... I'm done with silly adventures... take me home!!!!Scotttttttt, hurry and come get us!!! Ha! from a broken blue bug to a slithering bug!! ahahaa oh boy my life!!!!

It all turned out ok, we made it to the locksmith in time to make additional keys (that I just happened to have with us that I had previously ordered on eBay). I fully began to process the difference between a modern car with all the convenient technological features and a super basic classic OLD car! Seriously... note to self... what was I thinking????

But wait, there's more......... on the way home... the turn signals stopped functioning, the gas gauge stopped working and the G for Generator stayed on!!!! Ok, cute lil baby blue bucket list bug... you're going to the doctor ASAP! And there she sits as I write this days later... she's gettn a mechanical make over!!! And don't come home until you're fully functional ol girl!!!!

Next day, my energy began to wane more, my headache intensified and I began to feel that ol after-roid-rush-downer-yucky feeling... but "cowgirl up" as it was a beautiful day, and we had previously planned a ranch day visit day for our dear family friends and their sweet little girls.

First up,  "Apple picking" and stall mucking lessons with Alina

Then Alina gets grooming lessons with sweet, patient Boots
 

It's the "A" team girls:
                Alissa and Aubrielle                                         Alissa and Alina

aawww.... Ashley, Knuckles and Aubrielle

Cowgirl Alina and RedBear!


 And to finish off my roid-rage weekend, 
I took Alissa for her first ride in bucket list baby blue bug 
Gen-light on, no turn signals, and seemingly NO gas!
ok electrical system... time for a make over!

Off to the Doc you go Miss Blue

 And it was all downhill from there for me, 
as I bit the dust on Monday and Tuesday with another intestinal thing...
Maybe I'll make in to work tomorrow...

Thursday, it's off to my City of Hope Doc and then my local oncologist Doc on Monday...

What will they have in store for me?????
Will it be...
Revlimid again?
Velcade?
IV?
Subcutaneous?
More Dex steroids?
Prep for another auto-stem-cell-transpant?

I'm trying to remain positive, have a bit fun between the days and days and days of not feeling well.....
Can I please just wake up from this cancer coma??? 
You've got the wrong girl Myeloma... didn't you get the message???

6 comments:

  1. Oh my, you have had quite the adventurous past few days! Hopefully everything is fixable with Miss Blue, and she will become much more reliable. What a roller coaster Dex is, but isn't it wonderful to feel on top of the world, if even for a little while? Good for you pressing on with having your visitors over...what memories you made for them that day with the horsies and doggies! All those "A" girl names in one place really is something to write about...along with 11-12-13! You are a numbers girl aren't you? Praying your course of treatment is known soon so you can get on about the business of beating things into submission! Enjoy your posts and your pictures so much. Keep smiling and finding the joy!!

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    1. Thank you Linda for always checking in and your sweet, positive comments! Thanks for appreciating my silly ramblings here! My best to you and EZ!!

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  2. WOW sounds very interesting and you broke the key :O So glad you are living life to the fullest Julie. Never letting a negative thing take you down, especially a slithering bug. Miss you my friend so much. Thanks for the updates. - Theresa

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    1. Theresa?! my COC buddy? Thank you so much for stopping by my blog and reading and commenting. I will send you an email too!

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  3. I laughed through the entire post!!!! Loved it!!!!! And your positivity never seizes to amaze me!!!!! As for the "A" girls Alina and Aubrielle... They had a blast and they are still talking about it :). They are definitely cowgirls In the making. Can't wait for another play date. But for now take care of yourself!!
    Xoxoxox
    Claudia

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    Replies
    1. So glad you were able to comment here Claudia as you are the supermom of the amazing "A team" girls! Looooved seeing all of you, and we must plan another date soon, when we all feel well! Cowgirls in the making for sure!!! <3

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My Story... How my MM was diagnosed

October/November/December 2009...

Most of my life I was VERY presumptuous about being healthy, taking my (mostly) GOOD health for granted...
I was committed to annual check-ups for all of us, and so late October 2009, Alissa and I went for our annual physicals.

Surprise, surprise... my routine blood tests revealed Anemia, White and Red Cell issues, low Platelets, and a variety of other CBC red flags! I was (stupidly) not worried when my GP doc left repeated phone messages to contact him and when we did speak, I (stupidly) requested postponement his referral appointment to the Hematology Dept until the end of the Fall term.
Arriving for my first appointment Dec 14, 2009, I was confronted with the check-in sign that read: "Hematology/Oncology"!
What?? Nooooo! not me... I must be in the WRONG place!
And so my diagnosis journey began with vials and vials of blood drawn "stat", urgent Dr consultations, a suprise and painful Bone Marrow Biopsy, a full body Skeletal Scan, more blood tests stat, and then... on 12.30.2009... THE revealing meeting... the "huh-what" moment ... the confirmation diagnosis that I, Julie, have CANCER!!!

Happy New Year to me, I just learned a new vocabulary word:
Multiple Myeloma!!! MM, Multiple Mye-what-loma!!!

January - June 2010

My medical metamorphosis began.
I read, and read, and read and researched and researched MM. I trusted my expert Oncology team, Dr Lee and Nurse Jalee at Kaiser PC, and Dr Spielberger and Dr Kogut at Sunset Kaiser/City of Hope hospital.
I began to formulate a new reality and accept my "New Normal".
My treatment plan was developed to include powerful Dexemthesone steroids paired with Revlimid chemotherapy, with the plan to be hospitalized for an Autologous Stem Cell Transplant July 2010.
I began living "one day at a time" like never before.
Jim was a wreck. Alissa and Scott were stunned; family and friends shocked.

Me... Cowgirl Up! I got back in the saddle and knew I was in for the ride of my life!
I've done remarkably well these past months on my pill-form Chemo, "roid-rage" Steroids and other supportive meds. I am forever deeply grateful and appreciative for all the love and support from everyone in my personal and professional life! I thank all of you for working along with me, and allowing me to continue to lead a semi "normal" life!
YOU have helped save my life!

And now... the trail ride forks to City of Hope hospital as I will saddle up beginning June 9, 2010 for a new rodeo called an Autologous Stem Cell Transplant!
Ye-Ha, let the adventure begin!

Chemical Warfare...

January 2010 - May 2010:

So you've all wondered why I still can lead a semi "normal" life, with more good days than not-so-good-days.
It's because I've been on the following chemo regimen:

Pill form Chemo= Revlimid (.10mg capsules), and I still have (had) hair
Pill form Dexamethasone Steroids (20-40 mg!) paired with Pepcid
Mepron (looks like yellow finger paint!)
B-12- to build those cells!!
.81 Aspirin to prevent Revlimid complications

What the Heck is Multiple Myeloma?!

Multiple myeloma is a cancer of your plasma cells, a type of white blood cell present in your bone marrow. Plasma cells normally make proteins called antibodies to help you fight infections.
In multiple myeloma, a group of abnormal plasma cells (myeloma cells) multiplies, raising the number of plasma cells to a higher than normal level. Since these cells normally make proteins, the level of abnormal proteins in your blood also may go up. Health problems caused by multiple myeloma can affect your bones, immune system, kidneys and red blood cell count. Although the exact cause isn't known, doctors do know that multiple myeloma begins with one abnormal plasma cell in your bone marrow — the soft, blood-producing tissue that fills in the center of most of your bones. This abnormal cell then starts to multiply. Because abnormal cells don't mature and then die as normal cells do, they accumulate, eventually overwhelming the production of healthy cells. In healthy bone marrow, less than 5 percent of the cells are plasma cells. But in people with multiple myeloma, more than 10 percent of the cells may be plasma cells. Because myeloma cells may circulate in low numbers in your blood, they can populate bone marrow in other parts of your body, even far from where they began. That's why the disease is called multiple myeloma. Uncontrolled plasma cell growth can damage bones and surrounding tissue. It can also interfere with your immune system's ability to fight infections by inhibiting your body's production of normal antibodies. Researchers are studying the DNA of plasma cells to try to understand what changes occur that cause these cells to become cancer cells. Though they haven't yet discovered the cause of these changes, they have found that almost all people with multiple myeloma have genetic abnormalities in their plasma cells that probably contributed to the cancer. For example, many myeloma cells are missing all or part of one chromosome — chromosome 13. Cells with a missing or defective chromosome 13 tend to be more aggressive and harder to treat than are cells with a normal chromosome 13. ~ From the Mayo Clinic