Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Bye-Bye Wendy :(

Hi Everyone!
I know it's a random part of the night, but I seem to be sleeping in 3-hour increments this week (I was warned about this) so I thought I'd take this quiet hour to say Hello! First, some biz-ness. People keep telling me that they want to post comments to the blog, but when they try, they can't figure out how to become a Member, or whatever. So- I made some setting changes so I now think you can post a comment without having to sign up. When they ask you to "comment as" just pick Name/URL and put your name in both spots and it should post just fine. And I love hearing from you, so even if it's just a Hi, feel free to post me a note.

Of course, Fisher takes priority here, after his elbow karate chop through the glass pane of his bedroom french door. I can't believe what a stud he is- see photo! He has not complained once and thinks it's really pretty super cool to have a "cast" (aka, ace bandage) to take to school today to show his friends.

Ok, back to me, my favorite subject (I am very much kidding, I am soooo sick of me). As Wendy blogged, we actually had fun with Lyndsay, my chemo nurse (see photo, she is so cute!) and the actual infusions did not hurt a bit. That evening I had a huge headache and felt like ralphing, but I am a trooper and have yet to yack. Tuesday am was back to the oncologist for a shot of Neulasta that costs $2500- holy shit! We are pretty certain that we qualify for assistance so we only need to pay $50 for each of the four times I need it, thank goodness! The shot is very important because it boosts my white blood cell count by increasing production of bone marrow so I can continue on my "dose dense" treatment of every two weeks for 16 weeks. I was warned that the shot might make me feel like I have the flu, and I did and still do feel crappy, but definitely not terrible. Last night, Nick, Wendy and I stayed up way too late watching funny videos on YouTube. Can you believe she never saw "D*ck in a Box?" Come on, that's a new classic!

Also a word on my oncologist Dr. Wendt. He's great beyond great. He touches my knee when he talks to me, he never uses scary words to send me into hysterics, and he is an Arizona Wildcat. One day when he could tell Nick was feeling overwhelmed, he completely changed the subject to fly fishing for a good 10 minutes and the two of them bonded over one of their favorite shared subjects. He is one of the best oncologists in the state and specializes in breast cancer. I truly feel like he sees me as a daughter and will do everything in his power to get me back up and running. I trust him completely. Here we are together:

Saw my plastic surgeon yesterday and he seems happy with incision healing progress so far. I am still having a lot of discomfort in my chest area, but maybe that's because I have two hard plastic CD sized tissue expanders (but thicker like a shallow pot pie) inserted under the muscles in my chest cavity. Too much detail? Sorry, but it's sucky. I told his nurse that I hated my pressure bra so much that I was going to hit the doctor in the face with it and she said "hit him in the eye, then he won't see me taking nips from the bottle under my desk". Nurses rock.

Sadly, today is the changing of the guard again at home. Nick's sister Wendy is leaving us and we feel scared to see her go. She has been invaluable in every possible way. The way she fluffs my pillows, shaves my armpits, remembers my medicine schedule, wakes up with the kids and makes them gourmet breakfasts so I can sleep, fits me with multiple bras in the Macy's dressing room while politely avoiding my not so fresh body odor and nasty stitches across my chest, fills out our healthcare payment assistance forms, takes copious notes at every doctor's appointment, shampoos the dogs, picks up poops (dogs and diapers), cleans the bubble machine, retrieves lost binkies, and not to mention ruining her favorite pink shirt as Fisher bled and puked on her as she carried him to the car for his first hospital trip. She has been an angel and I love her soooo incredibly much. Thank you Wendy, I will never forget everything you have done for our family.

The good news here is that my big sister Claudia (she is 16 years older, but looks younger than me because of that moist Oregon air, damn it!) is flying in from Portland tonight and will be here for the week to slip into Wendy's shoes. When she arrives at 8pm, Wendy's got an hour to give her the full download before she heads to the airport back to her little family. And here's a shout out to Emma- who turns 10 today and mommy Wendy is here with us. Again, that's love. I hope that many of you will meet Claudia while she is here. She's pretty fricking perfect, and that's not just my opinion. Everyone who meets her falls in love with her, she's dreamy in the most dreamiest of ways. I can't wait to get my arms around her tonight.

I hope I'm on the upswing of the chemo drug effects, and each day will get a little easier. It's nice to know that I will have a week "off" between infusions to hopefully feel like a productive human again (who can't lift anything over 10 pounds). I'm still off diaper changing duty, which is kind of a bonus.

Oh, one more thing, today my beloved hairstylist Laurie for the past 15 years is coming over to the house to give me my new "bob" haircut this afternoon. We all thought that losing my hair might be easier if it came out in 12 inch strands instead of 20 inch strands. At some point I may just have to shave my head (Oh My God!!!), but for now, a new bob sounds like fun. Of course we'll have photos for you asap.



  1. So glad to hear Fisher is enjoying showing off his 'cast':) and you are amazing that you have been able to keep ''barfing" under controll:) just keep that peppy attitude going and you will be rewriting the chemo book! A new bob sounds really will help to keep you feeling more in control and that is sooooo important! I can hear how hard it is to say goodbye to Wendy...praise God that you have family sisters to help you!!! Saw some cute little caps with pony tails attached on won of the "pink" web sites...could see you wearing it...anyway keep writing, resting, and renewing your courageous spirit, prayers from the Poconos, hugs, Deborah

  2. Great update my friend....sounds like you are soldiering through every new event on this journey. So glad your sister is coming in for the next round of Hower hi-jinks!!! I can't wait to see your bob and know it will be a show stopper...

    xoxox - Nan

  3. We check your blog daily Kristin and my daughter thinks you are inspiring!
    We are sending you love and light!
    Tammy and Quinn, of the Zella Day, First Fridays crew

  4. Oh thank you, Kristin, for the wonderful update and darling photos! I'm so grateful Wendy could be with you and help you all in so many creative ways. And it will be great to have Claudia there to nurture you all and keep you laughing through the craziness. What a relief that Fisher is okay, what a hero! His daddy had many ER episodes, too. Not too much fun!
    I love your attitude and strength and faith, and am so glad you've got such an amazing medical team -- plus this huge team of family and friends who love you. Sending you my love too! XO Virginia

  5. Glad you got your first round of chemo behind you. I hope by now you are starting to feel a little better. Hang in there. We are all pulling for you.

  6. I love and miss you and wish that I could come over every day to wash your hair (or armpits), fluff your pillows, cart you and the kids around...anything!!

  7. So glad that Fisher is on the mend doll--he is such a little trooper!

    So sorry for the late night 'butt' dial my friend! I was plugging in my phone for the night and inadvertently hit the send button and you were my last sorry about that sister! By the way! Look for the puppy whistling video on YouTube for a little giggle (not as classic as the "BOX" video but will put a smile on your face and totally cool for the kids to see too!)Can't wait to see the new bob my friend! love you!

  8. Fisher is a tough little kid!!! Thomas Howard better be careful when they're Kung Fu fighitng!!! We're thinking about you and your family and we wish you a full and speedy recovery. The blog is excellent and we can't wait to hang out with you guys again. Take care and continue to be strong.

  9. Hi Kristin!
    The three hour sleep cycle may be from the discomfort. Don't be afraid of the pain meds, you never want it (the pain) to get ahead of you. (I speak from experience!)
    And by the way, I think women with no hair are HOT - not that I count.
    Maybe you should go for it now as a choice? Make it your decision, not something that happens to you!
    You are constantly in our thoughts,
    "Unka" Bill

  10. Kristin,
    I just want you to know that I check for blog daily and I you continue to amaze me every day with your strength and your mad writing skills! We all love you and wish we were there to give you a hug. Much love, Jeannie

  11. Great blog Kristen! I am so glad you are moving through post chemo without too much trouble. I can't wait to visit and give you a hug....I promise to be gentle! I love the pictures too. You are looking dang good girl!
    Mary Rhees

  12. Hi doll!

    Wanted to share an idea. Sydnee has been feeling a little under the weather this week with a little tummy thing. She was a bit queazy and NOTHING sounded good to that kidlet. I pulled out the snow cone ice shaver my mom had given us one year for some added summer fun. I used ice from our freezer and gave her cups of shaved ice without flavoring...she loved it. Helped her to stay hydrated and it was the only thing she would take. If you don't already have one, you might have Nick pick one up at Bed, Bath & Beyond! When you are feeling a bit queazy (is this how one spells queazy?), try it if all else fails to stay hydrated. Sydnee says its like snow that melts in your mouth...might help. Love you doll! Sending you warm, soft hugs!

  13. Hi Kristin and Nick,

    I also have been checking your blog daily. It's great to hear first hand what's what, and with pictures, too!
    Glad resident action hero Fisher came away from his tangle with the door with just minor war wounds. Tell him to pick on someone his own size next time, leave those poor inanimate objects alone.
    Lance Armstrong wrote in his book that apple turnovers were the best when he was going through chemo, so maybe do some of them a la mode with that custard?
    Positive thoughts and support from over here in NYC.
    - Cousin Graham