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So What's New....

That would be not much around here. I'm still suffering from so much pain. I get my fills then spend the first 5 days in agony, finally feel better, then it's time for another fill. I saw my PS yesterday, so now I'm at 1050 and only have another 100cc's to go. As usual my left side doesn't hurt much, my right side hurts enough for both. I woke up this morning with a pain on my right side, which I think my be a rib - hopefully not a broken one. I've still got the pain and pressure across my shoulder blades from both sides. And it's not just the pain that's keeping me from blogging, cause trust me I've had many thoughts of posts I'd like to make - but the pain is causing me to max out on my pain meds, which in turn is making me excessively drowsy and I usually end up nodding off. Because of my pain, sitting forward is uncomfortable, and even laying back isn't easy. Not helping matters is the fact that I've been sick for a week now, though I am not nearly as sick today as I was last week. I'm finally getting better, but add cold meds to the pain meds and yep, I'm nodding off. So right now I sit here unable to breathe just so I can make a post. I've got to do it now while I can. We're experiencing some major computer issues in this house. I have one notebook that completely crashed and won't boot up at all, then I have another that the internal connector for the power supply is loose - so one minute it works, then if I move it turns off - so I never know when I might lose it and get it back on if ever. I spent nearly 2 hours last night trying to deal with HP Support. What a freaken headache that was. Unfortunately one of Natalie's friends was here last night while I was trying to take care of the problem. I was in pain and in a bad mood, so I wasn't feeling up for making dinner - mostly cause Natalie never ate her lunch, so that was to be her dinner. Anyway her friend overheard me getting upset with tech support (they couldn't find my name, number or devices) and told Natalie that her mom is nicer than I am. Ouch. I gotta remember to be more careful when others are around, especially kids cause they may not understand what you're getting upset about. It turned out that the girl I was dealing with had enter my info wrong, but it took me nearly an hour to talk with someone else who could find my info in the system.....and of course these tech support people are located in India, so not only do they not know how to spell Louisiana, but you can't understand just what in the hell they are trying to say to you. I think for the price we paid we deserve a little better customer service, I mean these are custom built notebooks, not the cheap piece of crap you get off the shelf for $500 - which just reminded me of an email Ruben got yesterday from one of the many electronic gadget sites that was offering Acer notebooks for under $300, but I'm sure it's a piece of crap. You get what you pay for. So all these computer problems come at a bad time! I've got documents I'm trying to prep for taxes. I have to put all my medical stuff into a spreadsheet and figure out all the miles to and from the doctor's office so we can write off all the co-pays, deductibles, and rx's. The medical deduction is always a big one for me. I average a doctor or two a week and spend nearly $175 in rx's a month. This whole vacation has been spent going back and forth to appointments. Monday I busted a filling and had to go to the dentist to get it replaced - even though I was sick. Wednesday Natalie and I got our eyes checked, cause I realized I was low on contacts and was overdue for an exam. Well low and behold I find out that the little incident 2 weeks ago in which I thought I was getting pink eye was actually something else. It's all my own fault really cause I don't wear my glasses enough - which may just mean that I will be restricted from contacts for a month or more. My eye was all swollen and I had lots of blood vessel growth, so I am on antibiotic and steroid drops for now till I follow up with him next week. Yeah I can see perfectly out of my right, but my left eye everything appears hazy. At first I thought I had a dramatic change in my prescription, but we won't be doing an eye exam till my eye is better. Drops 5 times a day is not fun, isn't having to wear my glasses punishment enough LOL? I hate my glasses cause my eyes are just too sensitive to sunlight, but I guess when things get better I'm going to have to make a point of wearing then every other day whether I like it or not! Luckily Natalie's vision was perfect like her daddy's. Then yesterday I had my fills and Natalie tagged along - we had lunch, ice cream, and played with a cute little puppy at the pet store. She was supposed to get her brows waxed, but the girl at the salon was not in - so I'll have to figure out an alternative. Today she has a check up....I'm trying to make the most of this break from school. Next week I'm hoping to find time to finish my tax docs, but ti will be hard given I have doctor appointments for the first half of the week. I'm just going to have to sit aside Thursday and clear my schedule and hopefully work through the pain - and hope it all makes sense in the end. I'm just going to have to make it a priority to shift some things around and re-prioritize my schedule. Because of the pain, I haven't been walking and I'm not happy about that. I'm limited on what activities I can do as is, so I need to make the time to at least walk even if I feel like crap! I want to lose 20 lbs ASAP and another 30 or more by years end. I need to buckle down, get motivated and start using my craft room more. I procrastinate way too much and let things destroy my schedule, and I know I could be doing things much more efficiently - but I think I'm just suffering from lack of desire. It's all peaks and valleys and right now I am lost in the valley.


A Sucky Sick Weekend

This has been a miserable weekend. I woke up Friday morning my throat hurting. Natalie had a Mardi Gras parade at school that morning, and it was a bit breezy out. I think the chill in the air made things get worse. I don't know if I'd say it's the flu, but it's definitely a head cold with lots of congestion and coughing. Natalie's not full on sick, but Ruben is and he never gets sick! We were supposed to go to a parade Friday evening, but in route Natalie decided that she didn't feel up to going. Instead she just wanted to eat and go home. We hit up a Chili's (that's what she wanted) then went to Target to load up on some meds. Luckily Natalie is on vacation from school next week, so if she ends up full on sick she won't miss any days. Ruben's off Monday and Tuesday, which will be good for him to recover from his cold. Monday I have a dentist appointment cause I damaged a filling. I tried to get Natalie in for a cleaning, but they are always booked months in advance....I'll have to try Easter break maybe. Tuesday if we are feeling up to it, we plan on hitting a parade that Ruben's co-worker is in. Tuesday is Fat Tuesday - the actual Mardi Gras holiday, so I bet it will be crazy out! Wednesday Natalie will be coming with me when I go in for my next fill. Originally I thought she might be scarred for life, watching them stick me with a needle and pump me full of saline - but now I'm fairly certain that she will be fascinated by she needs to see that not all needle sticks hurt, now blood tests or IV sticks are totally different - LOL! Thursday we're both scheduled for eye exams. I'm hoping her vision will be fine - she tends to take after Ruben with his eyes and teeth, which are perfect; mine not so much. I'm already practically blind, so I hope my rx didn't change cause I don't want to have to get new glasses. The whole thing kinda pisses me off cause my rx got worse each year, then remained the same for 2 years in a row. I was all ready to consider laser correction surgery, but then it got worse again. I'm already wearing a -5 something, I'm still having problems focusing on stuff, and my doctor already told me I'll likely need reading glasses on top of my contacts....ugh. Damn, how can you be both far and near sighted at the same time? I don't get it! So keep your fingers crossed that my vision did not change this year.

Friday I booked flights for my brother and mother in law to come visit. Danny's coming out on March 9th to help me post-op. He's been unable to find a job in Vegas, so we're hoping he can get a job here and stay for a bit and save up for school. Damn economy took a dump and he's having problems getting a student loan. For the time being he'll be staying till August, but we can change his return flight at any time depending on if he can find a job here. Ruben's mom is coming out for 3 weeks to see Natalie when school breaks for the summer. Southwest was having a sale on airfare. We've been talking a lot about taking a vacation, but it's hard to plan for one when you're not sure when you're having surgery or how long your brother in law might be visiting for. So instead of doing Disney this year I think instead we'll put it off till next year, but plan it now and make payments on it - and this year we'll drive up to where I grew up and see some of my old friends, go to Six Flags, and see the sights along the way or maybe plan a trip to Texas and go to Six Flags and Sea World. First we've got to see how this all works out with Danny staying. It's just impossible to plan for anything when there are so many unknown factors. This week would have been a prime time to take a vacation, but I couldn't book anything cause I originally thought I would be having surgery next week. Lots of locals use Mardi Gras to vacation've seen one parade, you've seen them all. Hopefully later I will feel up to posting some pix from Natalie's school parade. Right now I'm going back to cuddling under my blankie, just as soon as I take some more Sudafed. Gonna snuggle up and watch a movie, and just chill.



Today was my 5th saline fill. I'm now at 950cc's and have only about 200 more to go before surgery. Each week is more painful than the last - the pain continues through the weekend and ends shortly before the next fill. The pain is so bad I've been maxed out on my pain meds, which makes me pretty drowsy. It's not just the pain of my skin and muscle stretching, the pain radiates from front to back as the expanders are crushing downwards and pushing on a rib. So I've got lots of pain in my upper back region. I've been pretty freaken miserable, and I'm just so anxious to get it over with. The pain is exhausting! I haven't been sleeping well. It's cutting into my blogging time. I'm very uncomfortable with sitting upright or laying back....and the pain is even making it hard to walk on the treadmill, at least during the first few days - which really sucks because I've been wanting to walk around the neighborhood with my friend from around the corner. We walked last night - got a nice blister on my foot to show for it, but today I'm just in too much pain. I swear I can feel my chest wall on my right side ripping.
So that's where things are right now. Next week is Mardi Gras. Natalie's school parade is this Friday - so I'll have some pictures from that to post. She's out of school for Mardi Gras, so she'll be accompanying me to my fill next week. I hope the experience won't be too scaring for her. Knowing her interests, she'll probably be fascinated by it. Next week we're also getting our eyes checked, and I have a dentist appointment cause a pita crisp damaged one of my fillings - fun, fun! I just hope that my prescription for my glasses didn't change cause I don't want to have to get new ones - oh and I hope Natalie's vision is ok. Please let her have Ruben's eyes. She has his teeth, which is a good thing! Ok, well time to take more meds now. I'm really uncomfortable and can't stand leaning forward anymore. Just a few more weeks till it's all over!


Picture Time

Today for some odd reason Natalie had school even though Ruben was off work for President's Day. I think it has something to do with the fact that she has all of next week off for Mardi Gras. Anyway, since Ruben was off work today we decided to go have lunch with her. Here are some pictures from lunch, and one of the Mardi Gras float project she had to make for her language arts class. The float had to be based on a book she has read - and though she has read the book, Ruben and I did the majority of the work making this float. It's from the book The Magic School Bus Space Explorers......then of course it has a 'lil bead action for the whole Mardi Gras vibe.


Social Networking?

I've been carrying around a load lately that I'm just not sure if or how I want to unleash it. Yes, it revolves around drama and recent events, and the whole thing is just totally exhausting - that's why I haven't opened up about it yet.

One thing I do want to discuss, and clear up is the use of MySpace and Facebook, and even this blog for that matter. It was recently brought to my attention that others have questioned my use of this social networking sites. I guess someone thought I was a bit old for such sites. Now let me just say that right now I'm emotionally and physically spent. There was a huge dramatic blowout earlier this week with someone and for the last few weeks since I began receiving saline fills again, I have been in a lot of pain - way more than normal. I forgot how much having breasts hurts your back - though my pain that radiates from front to back is from the pressure of my tissue expanders. So anyway, I'm not going blow a gasket on this post - I'm just going to make it crystal clear that my blogging, and use of other sites is strictly for networking. Of the people that are my "friends", most I actually know personally - others I have formed a friendship with because we have traveled down a similar path that is cancer - and the rest are friends of friends who write things I enjoy reading. I partake in these sites to not just keep in contact with old friends, but so that I can "network."

If it weren't for this blog I would not have had the honor or privilege of becoming a freelance writer for the breast cancer communities I work with. I would have missed out on doing something that has been a dream of mine for the last 4 years; and that is to help other women who have cancer. One day when I'm finished with surgeries and cancer, and the economy is in a better place - I have every intention on taking a class or two and sitting down and writing my breast cancer book. This is MY journey, MY dream. That is why I blog and have MySpace and Facebook accounts. There is no age limit to social networking, and anyone who sees a problem with what I do or why I do it is missing out on the bigger picture.

If a person isn't an obvious perv, do you believe that it is acceptable for a 30-something person to use these tools? Do you belong to MySpace or Facebook and has anyone ever questioned why you do?

Give the Gift of Music this Valentine's

Ruben and I spent the day shopping for Valentine gifts for Natalie. Nothing too extreme, she deserves a box of chocolates as we love her and Valentine's Day is supposed to be all about celebrating love. We started with a grand plan of going to the mall to hit up Godiva (my fave) then heading to Home Depot to get fertilizer for the lawn. Well we made it to the mall ok, did a little shopping, walking around. Ruben bought Natalie a small heart shaped cookie cake - I got my box of chocolates, we looked at the puppies at the pet store, checked out the Disney store, then ultimately broke down and entered the Apple store.....Ruben needed a plug to charge his iTouch, plus he was fondling and drooling over the notebooks. His HP died a few weeks ago and we're waiting for the extended warranty repairs to be done on it - in the meantime he's been using this ancient Dell that requires a WiFi card. I've mentioned before how electronic stores are hazardous for us as we have a major addiction, and right now we are truly having a love/hate relationship with electronics from Ruben's notebook dying, his phone breaking, our Blu-ray player not working, issues with our new Onkyo receiver - and now my notebook as just minutes ago my computer just turned off. It seems to be an issue with where the power cord plugs in...great, now I have to send in MY HP as well. Lovely. In any case, lately an old alarm clock that I've been using has been picking up some strange noises. I tell Ruben it's the aliens trying to make contact - it happens near nightly. He says it's interference with my iPhone, but I don't buy it since this problem just began and I've had my phone for about 6 months now. Somehow or another a iHome alarm clock caught my attention - it works with my phone, and it would solve the strange noise problem. The catch is that the Apple store is highly overpriced. I say this because we had bought Natalie the same model for her birthday and it was $50 less at Toys R Us, so we decided to go to the other mall where Target and Bed, Bath & Beyond is at. Sure enough we found it for just $100 - $50 less than Apple. I'm not sure what happened after that because I can tell you that we have 2 iHome products and we love them both, but somehow or another I ended up with a Jensen that offered all the same features for the same price but is actually an HD receiver. We figured why not, and so far I really like the product itself - though it is a little large for an alarm clock, but I can't say I'm too impressed with HD radio. I think I only found about half a dozen channels, but as far as I know it resolved our problem though I'm sure swapping out that old alarm clock for a different one we have in the house would have sufficed. Oh well - we can use this when we walk on the treadmill. It just goes to show that if you have an addiction you will find any excuse to get your fix!
Oh, and while at Target we did get Natalie two little gifts for Valentine's - a Nerf dartboard and this thing that maps out all the constellations and stuff, cause she loves all things science, biology & weather. So the day wasn't a total coulda been worse, I coulda walked away with that cute little Bichon Springer puppy I was holding at the pet store :)


A Lovely Surprise

The doorbell rang just a bit ago, I thought it was likely the FedEx man cause Ruben said he was expecting a package to come. Well I open the door to discover it's actually a floral delivery. I'm thinking the whole package delivery was just a line he used to make sure I would be home to accept the delivery. He even remembered and sent me one of my favorite flowers.......I say one cause I love roses, but they cost too much for something that dies so quickly, I love carnations in all their cheap glory, and I absolutely love tulips though they require patience to see their true beauty. Most retailers deliver tulips already in bloom, so they die within days - but a few good places get them straight from the Holland, and they come to you as buds that bloom over the next few with them showing up early it means that they should be open come Saturday. Knowing Ruben I'm sure he has a few other tricks up his sleeve. He knows how I love Godiva, so I wouldn't doubt if he brings home a small box of chocolates or a few strawberries. Other than that we don't really have any plans for V Day. Ruben originally wanted to go out of town for the weekend cause he needs a break from the stress, bile and drama that is our neighbors....I'll elaborate more later, but since it is Valentine's weekend, you can only imagine how hard it was to try to find a room, so we gave up. Maybe some other weekend we'll be able to make plans. Though here in town there are some parades going on this weekend, so maybe we'll hit up one of them if the weather permits. What could be better than Carnival and Valentine's?


Kim K; Everything that is wrong with Reggie Bush

Ok, that's it - I'm sick and tired of hearing this big booty nobody talk about her and her man. Seriously, we're talking about a girl whose claim to fame is a sex tape with Ray J. Yeah, she may be the daughter of one of OJ's infamous lawyers, but Kim Kardashian is nothing but a talentless whore who got the brilliant idea from her one time friend Paris Hilton to release a sex tape so that she could climb onto the reality bandwagon. All I can say is shame on you Mr. Seacrest for polluting our TV's with this garbage....and as if that's not bad enough this bitch has got to run her mouth off about everything! She's all over the place the last few months blabbing about Reggie Bush, the New Orleans Saints Running Back whom she is dating. She's talking about how she's ready to have kids, and posing in his jersey for some magazine article. I'll tell you this, she's the reason behind Reggie having a mediocre season, and spending the final month of it injured. It's because of her, that like Romo & Brady and their significant other jinx, his mind - like theirs, isn't on the game cause his mind is on her. Reggie Bush is no longer my favorite is now Pierre Thomas. Like Heidi & Spencer from The Hills, I just wish she'd be boycotted and no longer talked about, ever!

Here she is talking about Valentine's Day and how Reggie is spending it by taking her to Fashion Week. Here she is sporting his jersey for ESPN magazine - talking about being in a celeb couple. Here she is talking about wanting kids. Reggie, for the love of God please do yourself a favor kick Kim to the curb and salvage your football career STAT!


Natalie finally got over her fear and used her new electric scooter
from Christmas.


Old News, New Twist

As I'm sure you've all heard the hype surrounding Christian Bales tirade on the set of Terminator by now - and the following apology he made on KROQ saying that he "acted" like a "punk". Personally I think it's all a bunch of BS, as it's old news. The audio clip is from last year! July to be exact. I just think that this is a marketing ploy to attract viewers since the film is being released this spring. You know, viral videos are all the rage now - it's how they drum up PR and promote the work. It's the digital age - who needs a million dollar commercial, when you can leak something taped on set, right? Honestly, I'm not sure how I feel about the whole thing. To listen to it is funny as hell - but when you think about it, he went off on this guy for nearly 4 minutes and dropped like 36 F-bombs! I have a potty mouth myself, so the language used was of no offense to me. You just have to wonder though at what point of listening in or taking this do you stand up and say, STFU? This is why I think it's all marketing, cause I don't think anyone in there right mind would stand there and take it and not walk away or tell 'em to shut up. if you listen to his apology on KROQ he talks about how people are accusing him of being pompous and acting like he's better than anyone else - and I have to say that I didn't really get that from the whole tirade, but I did from the apology. He sounds very arrogant, then again it could just be cause he's British. Anyway, the last few days Ruben and I have been having lots of fun joking around based on this audio clip. There are just too many great quotes, you kinda can't help but to walk away mocking it. Last night I found this lovely little remix. I'll warn you now that this is totally NOT for little ears! Also, I found in the more info section where you can download this mix - which I did. I think I just might put it into my iPhone and listen to it when I walk or something. I'm telling you: instant classic! Enjoy!

What do you mean no football?

Natalie went and asked her daddy if there was any football on this
weekend. Apparently before asking she applied black marker to her

Diabetes Walk

Natalie met her goal and raised $500 for her school walk. I took 100+
pictures that I'll evevtually get around to posting. There were
hundreds of walkers and it was a beautiful sunny 70 degree day! We'll
find out next week where she ranked in her efforts.


Time Flies

Wow, I can't believe February is here already! Like January, it's going to be another busy month. Tomorrow is my brother's birthday, then later this month are the birthdays of my nephew, brother-in-law, and some friends. Then of course we have Valentine's, the anniversary of our very first "real" date, and Mardi Gras which Natalie has the whole last week off from school. I've got two more saline fills to endure then I will be heading into surgery. Personally I'm kinda hoping to do it Mardi Gras week, but we'll see how it plays out.

Friday I'm volunteering at Natalie's school for their diabetes school walk. Natalie has done very well with raising money and is very close to reaching her goal, we're hoping she will raise the most money this year. She corrected me yesterday when I noted that last year she placed 3rd when she actually placed 2nd - this year she's getting a lot of competition, so it's going to be a close call. If you haven't made a donation yet and wanted to, there is still time. All donations have to be turned in Friday morning - so you can still contribute online and receive a tax deduction. We haven't contributed yet as we are going to do it last.

We had a great weekend between Monster Jam and Super Bowl, though I am disappointed that the Cards lost. I think there were some questionable calls made - especially that last one. It should have been reviewed upstairs as Warner's arm was clearly moving forward, so it was not a fumble....and what about the unnecessary roughness of that one Steeler's player that repetitively hit a Cards player? It just was NOT right - however it did make for a good game, and having great food and company just made it all the better! Monster Jam was a lot of fun. I've got like 300+ pictures to go through and post. Grave Digger really tore it up and won the freestyle competition, then again he always does!

So, I'm sure that after my appointment tomorrow I'll be in some major pain for several days. Can't believe I volunteered at school knowing how much I'll hurt and how doped up I may be, but I really want to take pictures and be there for the whole thing. Luckily the walk isn't too long. Natalie also hinted that she'd like me to come to lunch one day, so I told her either Thursday or Friday I would come and bring McDonald's and have lunch with her. I should be good as long as no kids bump into me...hahaha. I'm sure to keep you posted, and I hope to get those pix up soon!