Tuesday, July 25, 2006

I like big bundts and I cannot lie

I read an article on blogs the other day. This was a pretty long article that said the best blogs are those with a specifically stated purpose and those that do not operate as a day-to-day journal. Journal blogs, I read, are typically pretty boring, and serve primarily a therapeutic purpose.

That makes me want to apologize for this blog- I know that those of you that check it are probably bored sometimes. It's worked well as a running record for the Interferon, for people who want a realistic view of what living on it is like. And I guess, because I've found a few people on the web that are going through treatment or have gone through it before, I see a benefit to journal type blogs, as I have a genuine interest in what's going on in their lives now. Seeing treatment from another person's perspective can totally change how you feel about your own experience. Sometimes its so easy to get wrapped up in your own existence, you forget how important it is to connect to the people around you that make dealing with things so much more bearable.

Speaking of bearable, it's finally cooled off here a bit. There was actually a nice breeze tonight when we took the dog out that was- get this- refreshing. That's right: a cool wind. The weather (how old am I, talking about the weather like this?) has been wild here this summer. Within the last 2 weeks, there were something like 7 record-breaking days of heat, all of them with a heat index of over 105, one day getting up to 111. Crazy. And Canada, despite the cold winters, is looking better all the time.

Saw the Derma yesterday, and got 2 moles removed. I'm glad- I'd rather have them in a jar than on my skin any time. The abrasion that I've had since the last derma appointment (3 months ago) still hasn't healed, but the docs insist that it's nothing to worry about. It's the 4th doctor I've asked about it, and I'm going to ask them to remove it again on the next visit, just for the simple fact that so many people with melanoma were seen numerous times for concerning spots that were misdiagnosed. We must be vigilant! It concerns me that so many of my moles are irregular- you know, they show the ABCD's of potentially dangerous moles. I mean, probably 50 of them have some of the signs of needing to be removed. I guess it's a slow process, having them checked and removed as needed, and I know I'll be having scans and skin checks every few months for the rest of my life. Whatever it takes to stay above ground.
The docs also said I need to be wearing sunscreen each and every day, even if I'm just walking to my car and then into work or the like. Good thing Booby likes the smell of coconuts.

Several people have written to ask how I REALLY feel about doing another month of chemo. I don't know what to say, really. One of my friends said, hey, don't you think it's better to do it now than have to do it again later? Yeah, that's a good way to look at it. The truth is, it's only another month. It's been more than a year of doing all this bs, and I don't think it's any secret I'm pretty tired of it. But I'm trying to see it as a stepping stone on the way to the rest of my life.
I don't think I realized it until yesterday at the derma appointment, but I am very fearful of a recurrence, and, I guess I realized in the doctor's office, I'm pretty much convinced it's inevitable. When the doctor walked out of the room and I left, I was sweating like crazy, like bad news was imminent. Leaving, I actually thought, Wow, that was a relief. In reality, people diagnosed with stage 3 melanoma get treatment all the time and live NED for years and years. I read their stories all the time, and try to post as many as possible just to remind everyone how it's not impossible. But this year, I've had very little decision-making power in what I want to do, and I guess that's what I miss the most: I miss the power to be able to decide what I"m going to do with my life. I miss knowing that there's nothing wrong with me and that I'm just a normal person like everyone else. Even just a few months ago, I wanted to quit the chemo, but was talked out of it by my docs and friends. Had it been myway, I would've finished that month and that would've been it. But sometimes I guess we make sacrifices for the good of everyone, and, looking back, I guess that's what this is. I'm ready for it to be over, and it will be soon. It's really not as bad as it could be, and it's almost over.

I guess that's it for now. The job hunt continues, and I've made plans to meet up with some friends this weekend. Plans for the trip to San Diego in November are underway for my best friend's wedding. Exciting stuff coming up, friends. Be good and don't forget to say your prayers.



Peter said...


The one thing you really don't need to do is apologise for your blog... I can tell you it is valuable, every last word. Don't let any critics make you feel that you are not contributing. There is a lot of bs out there, but yours does not fit in that category!

Keep it up!

Sarah said...

Let me just point out that I converted Celcius to Farenheit to see how my London,Ontario heat compares to your Dallas,Texas heat and it is the same! We've been between 90-100 for weeks now. It ain't igloos and parkas up here in the summer let me tell ya (ok, it's never igloos and parkas unless you're in Yellowknife)!

The whole sunscreen thing is interesting... Most of what I've read, and all my doctors' opionions too is that some sun exposure is required. Afterall, we are human and need sun to live (ironically) and to grow.

I only wear sunscreen if I'm going to be outside for more than 1/2 hour at a time (avoid burns at all costs!). I try to seek shade when walking etc. but just going to the car or picking some weeds for 10 minutes is a-okay from what I've been told. I've been told to get 20 minutes of sun exposure a day, any less than that could be bad....

Just interesting how many diff opinions we all get from the "experts".

Anonymous said...

When you DON"T write your blog, that is when I want you to think about apologizing.

Your blogs are inspiring, interesting, and necessary for all of us, even those of us without cancer.

A learning process and experience that I wish I could help with more. Your are my lady- LO -
mange - Got my tix for your PART - TAY!!!!!

faye said...

Lori, if there is anything you need to apologize for, it is for spilling wine on my shirt yesterday. (Just kidding; it's already out.)

I also want to second Mange's comment that your blogs are inspiring to those w/o cancer, too. I know that you want to be there for others who are going through what you've been going through, and you're obviously a source of inspiration in this area!!...Although I can't even begin to relate to the cancer experience and don't even know what to say about it sometimes, you've been very inspiring to me! I always feel lucky just to know you...so, you see? Inspiring, funny, and occassionally inappropriate. You're the whole package, bitch! And we haven't even gotten to boxed wine or trailers yet!

faye said...

Attn. technology department:

I can't get to your old posts. I think something is up with those links to the months. This is really messing up my stalking game. I strongly encourage the technology department to remedy this situation with all due haste so that I can resume my Lori stalking as soon as possible...Seriously, I'm getting the shakes.



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