SNL (1975-1980, 1985-Present): December 29, 2012 – January 1, 2013

Who gets the reference?

Saturday:

– coffee/knitting in the “nest” in my home office

[My “nest” is a loveseat of which each side is an independent recliner, and has lived in my home office since we got it, many moons ago.  On top of it reside a couple of neck pillows and a comforter, so I can be comfies there.]

– Starbucks

[S/F Mocha w/ whip for the drive to the Westside.]

– Lunch @ Mom’s
– Dad’s old (current) place
– Dad’s new place

[Lots of emotions happening with these stops – See “What Looked Like ‘Better” Turned Out to be PMS and a Full Moon.”]

– Frosting Cupcakery

Frosted Cupcakery

[Stopped at this place on the spur of the moment, thinking I’d pick up a cupcake or two (emotional eating, I know, it was a rough day).  When I got there I thought I’m headed through Burbank anyway on my way home which means stopping at Dad’s Donuts because their chocolate cream donut makes my toes curl in a good way – no exaggeration – “Don’t Bother Me, I’m Eating!”

So I happened to see their Frosted Cupcakery’s Hi-Tops and figured I’d get two of those (the seem like two- or three-biters, so they’d be just a nice little taste for Hubby and me).  I got a white chocolate salted caramel and a chocolate peppermint (didn’t see this flavor on their website, so I’m guessing it’s a seasonal deal).]

Sit N Stitch
– Unwind

Unwind Knitting Burbank

– Bed Bath & Beyond

[I had stopped for a salad spinner – I was gonna get one even though Mom said I could have hers since she never uses it – but the line was too long and I was getting tired.  This had been a pretty big day already.]

– Home

Sunday:

– collapse

[Yeah, I got through my Saturday and I was done.  So, I think I did the following things, not necessarily in this order:

– coffee
– reading
– watching tv
– knitting
– napping

After napping, Hubby told me he had placed an order at the Container Store of a few more bits for our ongoing garage remodel project and they had texted him it was ready for pickup – I could come with him to get it or stay home, whatever I wanted.  I decided to go, so . . .]

– Starbucks: coffee for the road
– Container Store: picking up the stuff he’d ordered

[He called them as we pulled up outside, they brought it out and loaded it up – we didn’t even have to get out of the truck – Love That!]

– Maria’s Italian Kitchen: Dinner

[We had previously eaten there a couple months ago, on the way back from one of our trips to Oak Glen (See “SNL (1975-1980, 1985-Present): October 27-28, 2012.”), we didn’t have one near us, we were driving by one and it was almost dinner time – so I asked Hubby if he wanted to eat before we headed home – we did.]

– Home: hanging out while Hubby installed garage bits

Monday:

– 9:00am-1:00pm work

[Yeah, I decided to just stick this in here ‘cuz it’s a half day in what otherwise woulda been another 4-day weekend, and I didn’t wanna make a whole new separate post for it and well, it’s just here – so there.]

– H&M

H&M

[My previous stash of Gap t-shirts is starting to wear out, and I’ve recently fallen in love with H&M’s L.O.G.G. brand t-shirts (they’re cheaper than Gap too) ‘cuz they’re So Soft they’re comfortable directly on my sore nipple, and that’s seriously saying something – SCORE!  So I went and got myself some to replace the ones that are wearing out.]

– Target

Target_640x455

[Stopped by a Target to try to pick up a skirt in my size that Hubby had gotten me, but he had brought home a size too small (yep, if you’re gonna err, that’s the direction to do it!), but couldn’t find it in the size I wanted.  :-(]

– Nap @ Home

[For the rest of today and my overnight, please see “Up at Midnight.”]

Tuesday:

– watch replay of Rose Parade in bed w/ Hubby
– brunch cooked by Hubby

[Yep, food, it’s a thing.  Brunch, it’s a thing.  Hubby says what do I want to eat.  I point him toward some pre-made cheesy hashbrowns I’d bought.  He says how do you want your eggs.  I say however you want to cook them.  Breffast/Brunch:

– Hillshire Farms Cheddarwurst, fried
– pre-made cheesy hashbrowns, nuked
– scrambled eggs with organic red onions, organic thyme, organic rosemary (all from Abundant Harvest Organics – See “I’ve Been Eating More Dirt Lately – Organic Produce Delivery 12-22-12.”), grape tomatoes and crumbled goat cheese!  Yum!

– emptied dishwasher
– loaded dishwasher
– washed dishes
– ran dishwasher
– watched college football on TV with Hubby
– emptied dishwasher

The Palace grill

– made The Palace Grill Rosemary-Buttermilk Muffins
– made roasted veggies

[Organic russet potatoes, organic sweet potatoes, organic butternut squash, some other kind of organic squash, all from Abundant Harvest Organics, drizzled with olive oil & organic rosemary (AHO).]

– nuked mac & cheese

[Added cubed beef tenderloin (crisped up in a pan), organic green onions (AHO), a dash of Half & Half and sprinkled with just a bit of shredded cheddar cheese and the last of the green onions.]

Copyright Ridingthebcrollercoaster.com 2012 All Rights Reserved.

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Thoughts: Week of December 26-28, 2012 (No Mon/Tues)

Wednesday:

8:10am-9:07 Drive from Home to Work

[With one stop at Sears to buy two of these:

Angel pig

Hehehe, okay, here’s the deal.  Hubby and I have a tradition of wandering a local mall on Christmas Eve afternoon.  We’re both always done shopping by then and just like to wander – people-watching.  Figuring the ones who’re like us, just hanging out with nowhere to be, nuthin’ more to do from the ones who are just Starting their shopping.

And if we see something that trips our trigger and the lines aren’t too long, we’ll get it (we both got some super deals on clothes this year).

So we’re in a Sears on the opposite side of the mall from where we parked (we had gone in to look at a garage door opener for the 2nd garage door – we figured we’d spend a bit of Hubby’s recent overtime on getting the matching door opener for the second door if we came across a screaming deal on one.  We didn’t.  What we wanted was on sale, but not enough for us to buy it and cut our night short so I could stand over it at the curb while Hubby got the truck from the other end of the mall).

We Did, However, find the Pig.  🙂  You see, it spoke to both of us, on many levels:

– Hubby is from Cincinnati, please see The Big Pig Gig (flying pigs)
– We found them at christmastime and they’re angel pigs
– They’re pink and therefore a little Out of the Christmas thing, just a little Crazy
– While neither of us like the stupid pink ribbon, it’s pink and well, we all know what I’m doing this year and some of next, so…

For any of you reading who are offline friends, please be forewarned that as of no longer than a week from now, when you come to our house, be prepared to see two (they have to keep each other company, you know, because just one would be lonely all by itself) pink, lighted, angel pigs in my front yard – year round!

Because just like this blog is entirely my world to command, Some parts of the Real World are also mine to design!

So I was going to leave early this morning to go to that Sears (out of my way by quite a bit) to pick up the pigs on my way to work, but basically this morning when I got up, I just didn’t fucking want to schlep it And there was a freeway closure between me and work, so I said screw it – I’ll take my chances and go on my lunch hour.

But, lots of folks are Not going to work at all this week, so when I got close to work and my nav program said I’d get to work at 8:57, I said to myself: hell, if there’s nobody there this early, I’ll run in to see if I can get the pigs here (and who the fuck cares if 8:57 turns into 9:10ish), and if the parking lot is packed, it’s back to Plan B – taking my chances at lunchtime.

Yep, got to work at 9:10ish, with two pink lighted angel pigs in my trunk.  :)]

Work
Lunch
Work
5:30pm-6:30pm Drive from Work to Home

Thursday:

8:25am-9:05am Drive from Home to Work
Work
Lunch

scarantinos pas-thumb

[Right before lunch, I had this craving for simple, basic spaghetti with meat sauce – it was delicious!]

Work

[I forgot to put a watch on this morning and it took me until 3:30 pm to realize it.]

5:30pm-7:45pm Drive from Work to Home

[Three stops on the way:

– get gas
– stop at market (Hubby out of OJ again and could be working until late into the night again – yes, I can be a good wife)
– pick up more meds]

Didn’t get to sleep until 10:30 😦

[Get home, call Mom before 8 ‘cuz she’s busy with something then, eat, make sure Hubby eats, get out of work clothes, try to calm down from a long busy day, take meds, lay down & read until Benadryl makes eyes close]

Friday:

Up at 4:30am for no reason – except maybe I was hot…hm… – and never got back to sleep.  😦

[Confession: my home office has become an absolute disaster the last 5 months or so.  I know, no surprise.  But now it’s making me crazy (which actually kind of means I must be feeling better and having some more energy to do something about it, But relax, it may not last long, and don’t act like I have to keep feeling this way, I’m not a trained puppy to be happy on cue).  Spent some time this morning cleaning up and partly clearing some decks.  I got into it – it felt good, hence being late to leave the house and late for work.  That’s some of that All Alone with Nobody To Answer To (not even Hubby, though the goddess knows I love the man) Time I need these days – just of me, by me and for me.  Please see “This Must Be The Worse Before The Better.”]

Oh, and this morning I Did remember to put a watch on before I left the house.  A watch that fit a couple of days ago, but was uncomfortably snug now (too snug to wear in fact – I don’t do clothes, etc. that bind, period) – which means after six months of this, I finally may actually have lymphedema all the way down my arm – fun!]

8:25am-9:15am Drive from Work to Home

[With 1 stop for weekly Starbucks treat.

So, for months I’ve been having a problem with my Starbucks app where it won’t reload one of my cards – it keeps saying something like “We’re having trouble reloading your card.  Please check your balance again in a few minutes.”  Now there’s nothing in there to indicate a problem with the debit card it’s attached to, like it’s oh, say, Expired or something?  For some unknown reason this morning it occurred to me that an expired card might be the issue.  Lo and behold, I changed the expiration date, tried again and it Worked!  Seriously, I realize it was something I needed to change, but the error message they decided on kept indicating to me that either the app itself was broken, or the problem was with their backend – there was nothing in it (at least the way I read it) to indicate it was something I needed to attend to. <facepalm>]

Work
Lunch
Work
5:30pm-6:20pm Drive from Work to Home

Additional Tasks Accomplished This Week:

– blogged
– put gas in the car
– picked up two pink lighted angel pigs for the front yard
– paid some bills
– ordered some sale clothes online from Soma.com
– got some more meds (the last time they’re “free” since next Tuesday begins a new deductible/max out-of-pocket period and I get to go back to paying for medical stuff again)

Copyright Ridingthebcrollercoaster.com 2012 All Rights Reserved.

SNL (1975-1980, 1985-Present): December 22-25, 2012

Who gets the reference?

Saturday:

[So, this morning I wake up to kiss Hubby and send him off to work.  You see he is off moving his company, all day and into the night.

Which means I have the house all to myself!]

– knitting in bed

[It took me Three times of doing this gauntlet, before I got it right to half the thumb gusset, and then I did the last part of the thumb inside out!]

– brunch
– knitting in bed
– watching Hart of Dixie on Netflix – one episode right after another – marathon style
– dinner

Sunday:

– kiss Hubby and send him to work…again!  🙂

[I do love my man And (not but) I also Love Another day All To Myself!]

– coffee in bed
– more Hart of Dixie, in bed
– more knitting, in bed

[This time I did the second/matching, well, technically they’re called Hand Warmers, completely correct, including the whole thumb!]

– nap (a nap day is Always better than a non-nap day)
– cleaned up kitchen
– loaded/ran dishwasher
– washed dishes
– reorganized freezer
– made cranberry sauce

[This time I used 2 of the organic oranges from my organic produce delivery – this batch came out really good with organic cranberries & oranges, and some local Buckwheat Honey I had found!]

Monday:

[Woke up to find Hubby at home, yay!  (There was some chance that he would have to work Monday.)]

– coffee in bed while
– reading in bed
– nap

[Um, where did the morning go?]

– hanging with Hubby for a few

[We decided to keep our Christmas Eve tradition, and so headed out to the mall (see  “Thoughts – Week of December 26-28, 2012.”]

– visiting the iPad Mini at the Apple Store (well meeting each other for the first time actually)
– shopping at Old Navy
– dinner at Macaroni Grill

Tuesday (Christmas Day):

– coffee downstairs together
– opening presents

[Santa must have realized I wasn’t a little girl anymore, since he got me liquor, chocolate and the yearly traditional sparkly for Christmas this year.

It had to be Red this year...

It had to be Red this year…

The yearly sparkly tradition began years ago with a set of diamond earrings showing up in my stocking – they were wadded up in tissue paper stuffed into a pyrex measuring cup (we had broken one that year and this was a good excuse to replace it).

Since then, I almost always get something sparkly for Xmas.  When life allows, it has been a Piece – something fantastic and expensive (like one year’s platinum and natural sapphire necklace), but most years it’s something for the jewelry box – something that gets worn continuously for a few weeks to a month, then goes into the jewelry box to be rotated in according to wardrobe.

Most years it is sapphire something (because of course, navy blue is my favorite color).  Last year, while Hubby and I were doing our Christmas Eve thing, just as we were about to buy that year’s sparkly (together – it happens that way sometimes), we got the call to go to the hospital Now – Grandma was being admitted.  New Year’s Eve day – after the devastating family decision to let her go to Grandpa – Hubby and I went back and completed that purchase.  It felt like the right thing to do – to bookend her with it somehow.  Well, it makes sense to me anyway.  Please see “I Missed You Last Night, Grandma – Single Malt Scotch and Election Returns.

But this year had to be red (see “I’ll Take Red Please.”) of course.  And the shape is no accident either.  My Hubby happens to have exceptional taste in jewelry generally (or at least taste that matches mine), and he’s very good at choosing jewelry with messages (I may hafta post the beautiful Piece he brought me back from Australia when he went there this past January for work – partly because V-Day was upcoming and partly as solace for the fact that I couldn’t go with him  😦 – it was chosen to convey a message too), and this year’s message is obvious.  :-)]

– breffast (outta the freezer – neither of us felt like actually cooking)
– hanging out with stuff recorded on the DVR and napping

[I actually was prepared for Hubby to sleep all day Monday after the hours I know he worked Sat/Sun, but he surprised me and wanted to do our usual thang, so when his eyes started closing , I didn’t mind – we didn’t have anywhere to be, so just hanging out together was perfect.]

– dinner:

marinated beef fillet
premade nuked mashed potatoes, with way more than necessary sour cream added, plus some of those organic green onions ‘cuz we had ’em and could
nuked frozen veggie blend

and

2008 Ridge Lytton Springs Zinfandel
(Hubby got me two bottles of this for Christmas – one to open now and one to save for later – this was a wine we had found on one of our motorcycle trips where we challenged the sommelier to pick a wine that would go with what we All were eating, and this is what he came up with from their cellars – we’ve loved this wine ever since.)

– dessert:

homemade punkin pie made by Hubby last year and frozen since then, newly rediscovered when reorganizing freezer and one moved to fridge to thaw (other left in freezer for later, since no new pies were made this year), and canned real whipped cream I had picked up at the market the other day (I realized once I rinsed the cranberries and cut up the oranges and put them all in the pot that the two cups of orange juice my recipe called for would drink Hubby out of OJ – and that was Not something that would end well, so I grabbed the keys and headed out to the market to avert disaster – whew!).

Yeah, all in all not a bad Christmas, or at least it certainly Could have been a Whole Lot Worse, but Wasn’t!  🙂

Copyright Ridingthebcrollercoaster.com 2012 All Rights Reserved.

This Must Be The Worse Before The Better

thumbs-down

December 11, 2012: Breast Cancer Support Group Holiday Potluck Party – otherwise known as the once-a-year gathering where those who no longer need the group on an ongoing basis bring something to eat and join the rest of us for a quick munch & gab & catch-up.

This event lands in my last week of Radiation Therapy.  To say I’m struggling is an understatement of epic proportions.

When I’m asked how I’m doing, I can barely (and sometimes not quite) keep from losing it, both with people I know from group, and those I don’t who are coming for their once-a-year appearance.

Maria is one of those people I meet who doesn’t come regularly, but comes to the party, and to whom I confess how hard things are for me just then.  It’s been years since she was in active treatment, yet she remembers seemingly like it was yesterday – I think we all do/will.

She tells me when radiation ends it gets worse, then it gets better.

I was told that the radiation is still active in my body for about 2 weeks after the last treatment.  I assumed when Maria said there’s a further dip and then things start to look up (I’m paraphrasing), that the worse would be about two weeks long and then end.

My last treatment was Friday, December 14th – 12 days ago.  I don’t feel like better is going to show up in two days.  I think I made an assumption and just realized it’s probably not a valid one.

Last weekend, Hubby had to work all weekend moving his company.  My office was closed Monday/Tuesday, as was his (providing the moving was completed enough).  When he told me he was working Saturday and Sunday (and that they would be long days), I was thrilled.

I don’t get really any meaningful time alone in my house these (general) days – with the way our schedules interact.  Being an only child (and Hubby a first-born), we both need alone time – maybe more than folks with more siblings.

Now that the absolutely overwhelming schedule of Radiation Therapy has backed off quite a bit, lots of things are flooding in, the chatter seems to have intensified:

Work: revise this, draft this, file this, fax this, answer this phone, schedule this meeting, cover for this person on vacation, etc.

Personal: check in with Mom, check in with Dad, listen to Hubby, (and with Christmas yesterday: buy this, wrap this, send this – do it all On Time), etc.

Household: dishes, laundry, pay this, stop for this, buy this online, descale the coffeemaker, clean out the fridge, manage the grocery list, etc.

And of course, everybody’s happy right now – taking vacations, giving and getting just the right gifts, opening their hearts to family and friends – and looking forward to the “fresh start” the New Year provides.

I’m not happy right now and the new year is Not a fresh start for me (as I’m only mid-way through my active treatment)  – I’m still fucking tired, on So Many Levels – physically, emotionally, FYI in case you were wondering my last pain-free day was August 12, 2012 – the day before my first surgery.  So I either feel guilty about not sharing everyone else’s joy for/with them, or am further exhausted by faking it for/with them.

I was thrilled with Hubby having to work because right now I just want to be alone.  I feel like the last six months have been a blur of overwhelming input and I just need quiet.  To get that quiet, I need to be alone and let the rest of the world’s demands go away.  I had two days of that.  I need more.

I imagine this crawling into a hole period will have some people upset – I’m going to have to try to not care.  I need to walk my talk of being selfish.

I need that quiet to process – to transform another part of the journey toward “after the first year.”

I imagine some people in my life are going to notice this difference and not like it.  Because what they think about what I’m doing is not actually about me, I’m going to have to try to not care.

I don’t know what that means for this blog in the near future, I actually don’t know what that means for a lot of aspects of my life in any (insert short-, mid-, long-term word here) future.

I guess I’ll be sitting with quiet as much as I can create it while waiting for…

thumbs_up_bciy

Thoughts: Week of December 17-19, 2012 (No Thurs/Fri)

Monday:

8:15am-9:30am Drive from Home to Work

[Extra late, thanks to the rain, which now means a shortie lunch to stay on track timewise.]

Work
Lunch
Work

Fatigue:

[It showed up at about 1:45 today.  Ah well, I knew it wasn’t gone.  I was hoping some small miracle would happen.  Well, I guess it kinda did – I didn’t really feel the fatigue until afternoon.]

Acupuncture
7:15pm-7:50pm Drive from Acupuncture to Home

Tuesday:

[General post-radiation weirdness item: today is the second day in a row I left the house wearing a necklace.  I couldn’t do that for the past 7 weeks.  Well, I could have, but since I couldn’t wear any neck jewelry during the treatment, I’d have had to take it off then put it back on after.  Instead, I took necklaces in my bag and put them on after treatment (if I remembered) which sometimes I did and sometimes I didn’t.  Now I can get back to doing this in it’s proper place in my day – at home, when I’m getting dressed in the morning.]

8:00am-9:00am Drive from Home to Work
Work

Fatigue:

[Yeah, today it arrived at about 11:30am.  I still had a few hours this morning where I could forget about it – but fewer than yesterday.  Good thing I have tomorrow off!]

Lunch
Work
5:30-6:30 Drive from Work to Home

Wednesday:

Physical Therapy
Whole Foods
Egg Plantation
Nap
Dishes
Laundry
Reorganize a Freezer
Make Dinner

Additional Tasks Accomplished This Week:

– blogged
– put gas in the car
– made Saturday nail appointment
– moved RSurg appt (to not conflict with follow-up ROnc appt)

Copyright Ridingthebcrollercoaster.com 2012 All Rights Reserved.

SNL (1975-1980, 1985-Present): December 15-16, 2012

Who gets the reference?

Saturday:

– coffee
– reading in bed
– bowl of cereal, also in bed
– first nap

[Okay, this was really just getting my ass through to morning.  I only half-intentionally did an experiment last night – fell asleep without taking my meds.  No Benadryl.  No pain meds.

I woke up at 4:30am for no reason that I could think of.  The great news about that is that I Did Not wake up because I hurt (which tells me I don’t need to take the Norco at night anymore to sleep through).  The good news is that it was Saturday, so who cared if I slept funny.

In fact, I was up for a couple of hours, then had First Nap, which if it had been properly tacked on to my night’s sleep might have gotten me through to about 7:00am.  As it was, separate from the rest of my night as it was, it took me through to about 9:30am.]

– coffee
– reading in bed

[If this looks familiar, it is actually Not a typo, but rather “Second Verse, Same As The First!”  Yep, I did it all over again.]

– brunch with Hubby
– Second Nap
– empty/reload dishwasher
– take trash out/replace bag
– do dishes by hand
– clean out refrigerator
– clean up grocery store list in app
– make dinner

Sunday:

– coffee
– reading in bed

[Yeah, I know, there’s a pattern here.  I am Not a morning person.  Let me just put it this way – stay out of my face until the first cup of coffee is completed and nobody gets hurt.

One of the hardest things about Radiation Therapy was having to get up and out of the house in such a short time, so when I don’t have to, I’m Enjoying Not.]

– brunch with Hubby (mmm, cage-free eggs!)
– vaping & hanging with Hubby
– watching accumulated music programs recorded on the DVR with Hubby, while knitting the poncho from here.
– snack for dinner

Things Not Accomplished This Weekend (That I Had Planned to Accomplish):

– clean up bedroom, put clothes/shoes away
– do laundry
– decorate mini-pumpkins with supplies purchased a while ago

Copyright Ridingthebcrollercoaster.com 2012 All Rights Reserved.

To Schedule or Not To Schedule, That is the Question

I’m not sure I still feel the need to document my schedule as specifically as I have been lately.

Clock

It felt important to me to share with those who (it’s been said to me numerous times) “had no idea” of the degree of chaos and intrusion into one’s normal life that cancer and its treatments cause.  The craziness that ensues from trying to work full-time through radiation (I didn’t quite make it, but didn’t realize until I was almost done with radiation how many people don’t even attempt it!) is really of the batshit-insane variety, and not only did I post for some sympathy (yeah, at some point – well lots of points – this Is actually about me!), but Also to let other people know when I say I don’t have time and energy to see them/do whatever . . .

. . . that there are some times in life when what gets accomplished gets whittled down to the serious bare necessities, and going through radiation therapy while working Is One of Those Times!

In fact, if it weren’t for Hubby, I may well have had to ask for help keeping food in my house.

Fairly quickly, my life became about 3 things and 3 things only:

three-fingers

– Cancer Stuff:

Radiation Therapy
Radiation Oncologist Appointments
Physical Therapy
Acupuncture
Support Group

– Work

As much as I still could, as I went through the 7 weeks

– Sleep/Rest

That was it.

Now that I’m through those 7 weeks, it will take me some time to transition out of that mindset . . .

And I already feel some better (though I don’t yet trust that feeling), not having those 5 additional deadlines in my schedule every week – and knowing the physical symptoms will take weeks to months to fully resolve (both skin issues and energy levels).

This morning was, well, just weird:

– being allowed to apply antiperspirant (at all) and body lotion (right after my shower)

– not having to leave the house until 8:00am

– not having to wear something I could pull down (if a dress) or a shirt I could take off, in other words Not having to wear something in which I could easily expose the girls without having to gown up (sorry, I’m just not a gown girl, for various reasons – this may or may not become a separate post).

You see, it seems to be part of conventional wisdom that it takes six weeks to make or break a habit.  Doesn’t sound right to you?  Okay, this is me Googling it.

My point is that the 7 weeks of my radiation therapy is just enough time for things like not applying antiperspirant, or not applying anything to my underarms and no lotion on my body directly after showering – to stop feeling weird and wrong, and something I have to think about (not doing).  And now I have to work at recreating those habits – recreating those parts of my normal life.  But that still won’t take up the time (and hopefully the energy either) that the radiation therapy took.

So, we’ll see whether I feel like continuing the schedule thing as I have been.  If I don’t, maybe I’ll have time to write some other blog posts, parts of which have been sitting hidden online as drafts for a while.

<shrug>