The Peachfuzz Chronicles

May 1, 2013

Making Old New Again

Filed under: Life after Chemo — by thepluckygastronome @ 11:45 am
Tags: , ,

26236842_077When my grandmother died, I was fortunate to be given a few of her things by my father.  One of her treasures was an old mesh pocketbook. The inside of the bag was a bit tatty, but I held on to it for sentimental reasons. Grandma was a fashionista. A Southern woman, she always had gloves and her pearls. She’s been gone 20 years now.

Recently, I had an occasion to drag out the pocketbook for a formal occasion. J_E_FlingI was chairing a fundraiser for my ladies group and the theme was Downtown Abbey. We had a fabulous evening!  All the men turned out in black or white tie and tails. Everyone was dressed to the 9s. We were raising money for educational programming at our two museum properties.  As chair, I had to set the tone for the evening. I found the dress and the shoes, but, what would make the perfect handbag accessory?

I had to look no further than my stash of old purses.  There is was!  The silvery mesh bag closedlooked brand new but the frame looked a bit tarnished and beat up. The bag was made by the Whiting-Davis Company The model number 2891.  The clasp portion of the bag showed signs of wear or tarnish. But the grosgrain interior was “kaput.” To read up on this company, here is a link to a nice article on Ask.com  Based on my research, the bag appears to be vintage 1930. Not quite Edwardian, but close enough!

I went to my local fabric store and found a lovely silk that matched my dress.  Since the shoes were to be dyed, I sent a swatch to the dyer. Then I proceeded to tear the stuffin’ out of the bag.  My inner “historical preservation” voice said, “Nooooo! Its value will diminish if you restore the bag.” But I am not selling this bag. Grandma would have thought it to be a fun project.  I even kept notes on how the bag was constructed so I could put it all back together.

The frame was pretty beat up. I got out a Jeweler’s Rouge cloth and polished most of the tarnish away.  It made a vast improvement!

Under the lining, there was a layer of backing that was attached to flannel.  I went back to the fabric store and loaded up on supplies.  Using the original backing as a template. I cut a layer from canvas and a new layer of flannel. Then I fused them together with stitch witchery. I made an inside pocket the same size as the original (I kept the original Whiting-Davis tag!) and then whip-stitched the whole thing back into the frame. The result:  good as new!

This little handbag story is a metaphor for my experience surviving Ovarian Cancer.  I too, got the stuffin’ ripped out of me. The Jeweler’s Rouge was akin to chemo, taking away the tarnish of cancer. Today, 18 months post-chemo, I feel good as new!

September 22, 2012

She’s Baaaaaaack!

Filed under: Uncategorized — by thepluckygastronome @ 11:47 am
Tags: , , ,

It’s been 11 months since Mother left. My last chemo infusion was November 2011 and I am still on the “right side of the sod!” I am just feeling strong enough to even think about blogging again. It looks like I beat this beast back. My lab results and CT scans all look good. My next oncology check up is in November. It’ll be a biggie.

Now I live with the body that’s left. Some days, I feel like I’m 100 years old. Last night, I took a ride with my wonderful husband for the 30-minute trip down to the Costco. When we arrived, he practically had to peel me out of the car. As I was chuffing and chugging through the parking lot, I thought that I must have looked to be a likely candidate for a walker, I was hobbling along that slowly!  But HEY! I’m walking! Woot! Woot!

Some days are better than others. I am seeing a rheumatologist for the joint pain, but it seems that after all the tests, the good news is that I am just out of shape. The bad news is that I’m out of shape.

I regret that I’ve been so quiet for all these months. Mother’s death took the stuffing right out of me. I had to crawl into a corner and lick my wounds–on so many levels. I still miss my parents greatly. There are still times where I think, “Oh! I need to remember to tell mom that!” but she is not at the other end of the phone any longer. My sister and I talk almost daily–which helps.

I got a spooky surprise last Halloween.  I was rushed to the ER as I suffered a Pulmonary Embolism–or as the docs like to say, “She threw a clot.”  Right through the ticker and into my right lung! This required another four-day hospital stay.  For the next six-and-a-half months, I self-administered blood thinner injections (trick or treat…) that cost us an arm and a leg PLUS a month’s mortgage payment.

On top of this, my peripheral neuropathy was getting worse. The numbness had extended from the feet to my hands and face. All this seemed to happen at once. We tried switching my chemo meds around. But things got worse.  At the end, I was a pretty beat-up, bald blob of bones and not much else. After my last scheduled chemo, it was time to discuss “maintenance chemo.”  After reading through the statisitical data and a few studies, I agreed with my doc that I wasn’t a good candidate. So we pulled out the port and now I am under “surveillance.” I visit every three months.

Even though it is fall weather outside, it feels like spring. As I get more strength, I feel like my life is a new beginning. I want to do everything but some days, I don’t have the strength. I over do, and get tired. But I’m happy just to be here. I like to tell people that I feel like I just got out of jail and want to do everything before the rug (may or may not) get pulled out from under me again. The kitchen and all it’s delicious experiments beckons. The genealogical research is out there waiting for me to conquer those unanswered questions that befuddled my mother and grandmother before her.

The most important lesson I’ve learned is to slow down and take care of myself. For God only knows how much time I have left. My job is to make the time that is left worth the living it of. I plan to still continue this blog as well as the Plucky Gastronome blog. The past several months has given me many things to write about. This will obviously be true for things to come in the months and years ahead. I am told that survivorship has its challenges. Well, we’ll just see about that!

August 25, 2011

Mom’s Obit

Filed under: Doris Update — by thepluckygastronome @ 1:55 pm

Here’s the link to Mom’s obituary in her local paper.  Funeral is Saturday at 10 a.m. Chandra will be reading a message from me during the service. It is entitled: Things I Learned  From My Mother.

We are sad and missing her already.  I went back for more chemo yesterday. Mother made me promise that I would make my health my first priority. “Don’t even think about sneaking on an airplane and coming out here.” she said.

I think we made arrangements to have the service videotaped. I’ll have to make myself content with that. I’m talking on the phone more frequently with my sibs. It’s nice. I’ve already called my sister “mommy” by mistake twice and my brother is oh so good and making me laugh.

Thank you everyone for the words of support, the flowers and cards. Especially your prayers. I’ll make it through this week, and then carry on. That’s what Mom expects. That’s what I’ll endeavor to do.  I just have to be brave.

August 20, 2011

Journey’s End

Filed under: Doris Update — by thepluckygastronome @ 6:14 pm

Marv and Doris--Together again.

I got the call early today.  Mother peacefully passed away this morning at 7:37 a.m. local time.  Conrad and Chandra had stayed with her all night at the hospice and report that she had a peaceful end.

We are heartbroken but happy that she got her heart’s desire to see and be with her beloved Marv again. She missed him greatly. We will miss her terribly. She was witty and sharp of mind up until the last.

Funeral arrangements are being made as we speak. Sundberg-Olpin will be handling the funeral. More details as they become available.

Thank you all for your care and concern for our family.  We will continue to rely on your thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.

 

August 16, 2011

Hospice

Filed under: Doris Update — by thepluckygastronome @ 8:56 pm

Just off the phone with Mother.

She’s moved this afternoon to a hospice facility that is about five minutes from Dina’s office in Salt Lake City.

“I feel like I’ve been dropped into an Italian villa,” she told me.

I think she likes the place.

As soon as she got settled, Mother was asked if she wanted a bite to eat. Her order of a small salad was delivered post haste and Mother reports that it was delicious.

I think she likes the food.

I have chemo tomorrow. This will be the first infusion of cycle four. The double hit. Mother and I made a date to talk on the phone from our respective beds tomorrow.

I am so happy she’s happy.

August 14, 2011

So Nice To Be Loved

Filed under: Doris Update — by thepluckygastronome @ 12:33 pm

Today is my son’s 25th birthday. I am baking up a batch of his favorite blueberry muffins.

He doesn’t ask for much. But I know how happy it makes him. Even though I make these throughout the year, it is always special to have them piping hot out of the oven on his birthday and Christmas morning.

We’ll celebrate his birthday later today.  And I’ll put on a good face… and try not to cry.

Yesterday was a particularly rough day.  Not because of my cancer or chemo treatments.  I’ve been preoccupied with thoughts of my mother. It’s been a particularly trying week.

Marv and Doris on their honeymoon.

Mother’s first two sessions with the “Zamboni” went pretty well. Considering everything that is wrong with her, she went through the first dialysis pretty well.  Her third session did not go so well.  It seemed as though everything went wrong. She began coughing and could not catch her breath. Her blood pressure was like a roller coster. The battle went on into the night and Mother credits a nurse named Peter with bringing her back from the brink. The medical team began the full court press. Conrad, Dina and Chandra all cleared their schedules and ran to the hospital. Jim came home to be with me.  It was one of those “Boo-Hoo” kind of days where Twinkie stuck to me like glue.

After they stabilized Mother, we did the SKYPE thing. It did me a world of good to see her. I passed along the latest greetings that I’ve received via this blog and the messages of love I’ve gotten from her friends via email. “It’s so nice to be loved,” she replied.

Later that week, the three of us sibs had a SKYPE session over at Conrad’s. After running through the list of to-do’s that Mother had given us, we got to the subject of how much we were struggling. Just like we did with Daddy, we still didn’t think Mom was at that place where it was time to “let nature take its course.”  Mother was still telling us she was not ready to die.  We felt that each day, Mother was developing new medical complications that acted as a Catch-22 to treat her existing ones. How much punishment could she endure?  What was the tipping point?

It is though we are living the same story line that we did with our father’s death. Infection, renal failure, pulmonary edema…  We’ve seen this all before.  We know how the story ends.

One of the things that we had agreed on with Daddy was that when the end came, it would be what we called, the “DUH Moment.”  That would be the time when everything would fall into place and the decision to “let nature take its course” would make perfect sense.  There would be no doubts.  As long as we had doubts, we would take all medical measures.

Yesterday, Mother had her “DUH moment.”

She had gotten the results from a chest x-ray which showed bilateral pleural effusions. Conrad was with her when the news came during a post-midnight visit from her doctor. The recommendation came to move her to the ICU and have another surgery to insert a monitor of some sort or other.

“Wait,” asked Mother. “What exactly does this new procedure get me?”

The answer was to “prolong her life.”

And that was it.  Doris had just gotten to the proverbial “line in the sand” of her Advanced Directive. The “DUH Moment” had come.

I got a text from my brother at 8 in the morning. He said Mother was awake and I should call. My first thought was “Uh-Oh,” what was he doing at the hospital with Mother at 6 am? This was not going to be my regular 90-minute Saturday phone call where we talked about books, politics, gossip and life in general.

Mother told me about her decision. We talked an hour about her business affairs. I asked her what she wanted me to write about on this blog.  “Oh, just tell them that science failed me–just like it did for Daddy.” She seemed relieved with her decision.

We had a SKYPE session later in the afternoon with Dr. Peter Yarbrough (who was also one of Daddy’s doctors), to go over the expectations for palliative care. I remember Dr. Y had a great way of dealing with the difficult when we consulted with him on Daddy’s case.  He was just as professional, yet compassionate again yesterday. When asked how much time she felt she had left, Mother replied that she would like enough time left on earth to be able to say her goodbyes. Dr. Y said he couldn’t promise that all the family could get to Utah in time…  which was my cue to tell him that my health did not permit me to come to Utah–for several months.”

We do not know how much longer we have. It is estimated that it may take from days to weeks, depending on the way “nature takes its course.” Every effort will be taken to make sure Mother is comfortable. She asked to be taken off antibiotics, telemetry, and will be given pain and anxiety medications.  She’d like to stay the remainder of her life at the U. Hosp, but she may be moved to a hospice in Provo. We’ll know more tomorrow.

Those of you who know Mother wouldn’t be surprised that she’s already planning her funeral and has sent Dina over to make arrangements. The lady is nothing but organized.

So…  in the time we have left, I guess Mother wants to say her goodbyes. You can reach out in several ways. Post a comment and I’ll read it to her over the phone.

Same with email.  Or you can stop by the hospital if you’re in the neighborhood. I’ll keep you posted as best I can here.  Caveat: I have another chemo treatment on Wednesday and will be back in the rabbit hole by the weekend.

As Doris said, “It’s nice to be loved.”  We have felt your prayers on behalf of our family. We can’t begin to thank everyone for their kindness. We beg your continued prayers at this difficult time.

August 10, 2011

Bring in the Zamboni… again

Filed under: Doris Update — by thepluckygastronome @ 1:24 pm

Yes, I’ll admit. It’s been a cruddy couple of  weeks.

The last time I went to chemo, my chemo nurse Nancy G took one look at me and (correctly) observed, “you got your butt kicked this week, didn’t you?”

Gee, it was that obvious?

The first week of my third cycle was the toughest yet.  Not only did I feel like I’d been through the Rabbit Hole; it was more like I’d been dragged backward by the toe of my stylish TEDS sock, through stinging nettle, set on fire, only to have the flames beat out with the mat that sits on my front porch.

Heh, Heh, it may have been ugly but I made it.  (Note to cancer:  “Nanny, Nanny, Poo-Poo! ” with tongue sticking out).

The second week of cycle three was much more tolerable, but there were so many things going on with Mom that today’s post finds me feeling a little bit like Sigourney Weaver’s heavily-panting character in Ghostbusters. “There is no Dana, there is only Zuul!”  The developments have come so quickly that I feel as though I can’t keep up.

So here’s an update:  Our dear Doris is no longer at the LTAC facility. She really did like it there. But alas, she developed a case of a lazy kidney. The docs at the LTAC felt that it was prudent to move Doris back up the hill and she now (again) has a room with a view at UHosp. Again, she has been poked and pinched and tested. Her lack of fluid output has required that she be monitored by a Foley Catheter. The numbers have been worrisome. She also is retaining fluid in a manner that eerily parallels Marv during his final weeks. It is this development that perhaps is the most unnerving. The reality is that now the thoughts of a triple bypass surgery have seemingly been tabled permanently. This news was a crushing blow for the family.

Mom and Dad at the beach. They've done everything together--marriage, kids, cancer, pulmonary edema... now they will share the dialysis experience.

So as did Marv, Doris has made the decision to give dialysis a try. Last night she went for a spin in what the Roberson’s lovingly refer to as “The Zamboni” or that big dialysis machine that resembles the ice rink staple. Everyone was concerned during this first foray, as Doris’s heart condition is a complicating factor. But  she came through swimmingly, having met the goal of pulling off a liter of fluid. The docs have given Doris a 30 percent chance that this treatment will be successful.  Today, Doris will have another 2.5 hours on the “Zamboni” and another  session is planned for Thursday.  At that point, the docs will reassess the situation and make further recommendations.

As a family, our spirits have been up and down by the day and sometimes by the hour. The developments came so quickly that there was no time but to “circle the wagons” and deal with the situation at hand. We have been forced to open our eyes to some stark realities and openly discuss them in a refreshing new way. We’ve all laughed, cried and wondered why it should be that Echo has been placed in a forced cancer exile at the exact time that would have sent her running to support the family. Familial roles have shifted in unexpected ways and new responsibilities undertaken out of necessity. We all wonder what the lessons to be learned from this experience will be. It may be years before we know.

Doris will tell you she’s not “going anywhere.”  She’s still on the attack and intends to exhaust all her options. She even got a new hair cut, which makes her look ten years younger!  (Thank you Sylvia!) The family wants to thank everyone who has reached out, visited and offered up prayers on our behalf. Just knowing you are there and care is a comfort.

July 30, 2011

Moving Forward As Best She Can

Filed under: Doris Update — by thepluckygastronome @ 11:07 am

I got teased by Doris yesterday. We were on the phone and she was complimenting me on my new blog pic.  “You know,” she said. “I’ve never seen you that bald. “When you were born you had at least an inch of hair growing.”

I had forgotten about that…  she’s right!

“You know what’s happening?” I replied.  “I looked in the mirror this morning and see some of my hair is starting to grow back!  The only problem is that it is only the gray hairs.”   What gives?!!  I am in the MIDDLE of treatment.  All the hair is supposed to be falling out.  But the gray hairs?!!  “My friend Sandy dropped by and I told her about this phenomenon.  Her response was, “Just be glad they’re growing!”   Well put.

Mom is plugging along in the LTAC. She recently developed another infection. They have given her a second type of antibiotic to try and knock this new one down.  From the sound of her voice it appears to be working. She had developed a nasty cough that I don’t hear anymore.  She is eating better and her numbers are up in several good ways.  We are encouraged by her progress despite the small infectious setbacks. She sees the cardio surgeon doc next week for a progress/planning session. She is hopeful she will be ready for the Triple Bypass.

We want to thank those of you who have reached out to Mom in ways big and small. She enjoys your visits and phone calls immensely. Thank you especially for your thoughts and prayers.

 

July 28, 2011

Grits and Giggles

Filed under: Uncategorized — by thepluckygastronome @ 3:41 pm

Can I just say we’ve had a helluva week?

Things are calmed down. We know what’s going on and I can go into this week’s chemo rabbit hole worry free. Warning: This is a LONG post.

About a week ago, I developed a pain in the back of my left knee. Being a former competitive high jumper and physical therapist/athletic trainer’s daughter, I figured it was a tight muscle and ignored it. A day or so later, the tightness spread to my upper calf area.  I did the “normal thing” and did calf stretches. Sensible right? A few days later, the tightness incompassed my whole calf. More calf stretches. By the time the weekend came–and isn’t it always on the weekend??–I got out of bed to a searing pain in my leg. Uh oh…

The Dread Pirate Roberts also had a gimpy left leg. Notice how he too, must peg-leg about during sword fighting.

I racheted up the “treatment” with gentle massage and heat. Sunday morning came and I could not walk.  I was hopping around the house like the Dread Pirate Roberts. Just get me an eye patch and a parrot for my shoulder. Argh Matey! By Monday, the swelling and redness emerged. I was now in deep doodoo. It was time to call NancyG, my oncology nurse.

Since I live an hour away from UPENN, Nancy directed me to hobble immediately to the nearest local hospital where she would call in doctor’s orders for an ultrasound.  One of the things that they see quite frequently is clotting or Deep Vein Thrombosis in their clinical practice and you don’t mess around with possible clots. If one of those little suckers dislodges and makes its way to your heart, you are in the deepest of deep doodoo.  My father had leg clots after his colon cancer surgery, and one of the football coaches he worked with for many years was felled by this malady. Daddy was immediately hospitalized and watched like a hawk until they remedied his clot problem. So I took her warning seriously. I knew that if the test showed clots, I wasn’t going home. I would be admitted.

Jim raced home from work and took me in. Happily, the ultra sound was negative and we went home relieved. NancyG told me to keep the leg elevated and we would further discuss when I went in for chemo on Wednesday. I fell into bed and slept like a rock until the following day. Jim worked from home the following day, which was a comfort because the leg got even worse.. I remained elevated and quiet all day. Later that evening, I shooed Jim and Caroline out for a break at the movies. Jimmy stayed on at the house in case I needed anything.

I do not have one of these in-scripted on my chest.

Boy was I glad he was there!  I was jonesing for a couple of those peaches I picked earlier in the week. Thinking I had some sort of “S” on my chest, I got up and peg-legged to the kitchen and started to peel and slice a small dish of peaches. I barely made it.  The pain was so bad I nearly vomited and then got light-headed. “Jimmy, I need to go back to my bed to lie down.”  He made sure I safely got there.  So much for thinking I was one of the “Supers.”  Jimmy was great. He served me my peaches and made sure I got all my night time meds taken.

The following morning, Jim took a vacation day and we began our sojourn at 6:30 am to Philly for the first infusion of round three!  I always meet with the doc prior to the first infusion of each cycle. He didn’t like to looks of my leg. Just to be sure… he wanted to do a full MRI on the left leg after my infusion. Would we be OK with that?  I looked at Jim. “We’re here, for the whole day,” we said. We wanted to make sure too. Especially after our experience with my Daddy. The doc, who always wears really snazzy ties, also had good news:  my bloodwork looked good and my CA-125 dropped into the 20s!  Plus I dropped another four pounds–which I can still afford to lose.

My infusion went well. My chemo nurse Mary Kate is a real “Annie Oakley” with the a needle.  All she needs is one shot to hit the target.  She knows how to wrangle Gromit and always gets him connected in one shot. He has proven to be an elusive little bugger for others. It was about 2:30 when we got done with chemo and we rushed down to radiology  where we would be “fit in” to the line up.

They have a sweet set-up there where you check in with a maitre ‘d type who hands you a clip board to fill out.  Then you wait for your name to be called where you go to one of 8-10 desks where you give all your info and get processed. When I was handed the clip board, I started to sway. They had to go get a wheel chair. I must not have been looking too good. I’m too embarrassed to tell you what I was wearing.  They tell you to wear “comfortable” clothes for chemo. Let’s just say I had that “fresh out of bed” look going–complete with pajama pants.

I looked at the first sheet on the clip board.  “Please list all drugs you are currently taking.” …are you kidding me?  There must be two dozen drugs I am currently taking and they are all in their computer system!  I felt the tipping point of hysteria slowing inching closer. I made a game attempt at filling out the rest of the forms.  I was called to the desk.  “Ma’am,” I said. “With all due respect, I am not filling out this form,” I said sliding it across her desk. “I’ve been here since 7:45 this morning. I confirmed all my drugs at 8:30 with my doctor’s nurse.  It is in your system. You can call upstairs and have someone fax it down for you if you are unable to access it.  I just finished four hours of chemo and I’m at the end of my rope. I hope you understand I’m just keeping it together for one more procedure today.”  Her eyes got a little wide and she got it.  All she asked was for me to confirm my address and birthday. Bless her!

I made it through the next several hours on sheer grit. With Jim banished to the waiting area, I got wheeled to the women’s dressing area, where I stripped my kooky chemo wear and strapped on the required gown–much more fashion appropriate. Then I waited. CNN was on the TV monitor. They tossed the show to anchor Brooke Baldwin at 3 pm.  I watched and waited. My leg was not elevated. Then Brooke started previewing Wolf Blitzer’s Situation Room, which I know comes on at 5 pm.  Was I having an out of body experience?  Have I been here that long?  I did a time check. It was only 4 pm. I pulled more grit up from who knows where.  When my time came, I was wheeled to the outside of the MRI suite.  I had to peg-leg inside as the chair was metal.  No metal allowed.

Young son of "Mr. Siemens"

Brigette was my MRI tech. A real sweetie. Bad news:  I had to have another IV because they needed to insert contrast dye into my veins for the study. Hey!  What’s yet another needle?! She too is an “Annie Oakley” and got it in one shot. She got me on the slide and set me up for the tube. She slapped some earphones on me. I requested classical and we were off and sliding.  She began to rev up “Mr. Seimens” and I realized that I couldn’t hear anything in the earphones.”  I asked and she turned it up–but only a little. By then we were off and running. “Bang, Bang, Bang; Rat a Tat Tat Tat; Buzz Buzz Buzz, Ping Ping, Ping,” blasted through the earphones.  During pauses in the imaging, I thought I could hear a Rachmaninov concerto in the background.  Luckily for me, I had listened to some Chopin on my iPod during Chemo so the music was still fresh in my mind.  I had to play some mind games to get through this.  Digging deeper, I brought up more grit and started imagining all the notes in Chopin’s Etude #7.  Too Namby Pamby. I needed something with more horsepower.  So I clicked up Polonaise #5 in F sharp minor. If I remembered every note in sequence I was good for another 10 minutes.

I had pretty good success blocking out the noise of the MRI machine. Brigette’s voice came on telling me I had about 8 more minutes to go and she was going to start injecting the dye. My mind went back on Chopin. With about four minutes to go, I had reached the end.  I began to have the more uncontrollable urge to start laughing hysterically. I started thinking about my situation and all the over the top things that have happened to me recently.  One of the former colleagues called my blog “tragicomic” and that is the thought that just got me started.  The problem was I couldn’t move. My chest started small heaving. I had to dig for more grit to keep still!

Finally it was over.  I managed to get dressed and meet up with Jim in the lobby.  I had been gone two hours. I wanted to hug him and slobber kisses. But I started laughing. Hysterically.  I was out of rope. My Grit was gone and my bestest friend and man that I love was there to pick up the pieces. We were headed back up to the doc’s office for the verdict. If  I had clots, I was headed across the street for a stay at the hospital.  I laughed all the way across the lobby, all the way up the elevator, and was talking a mile a minute.  “You’ve got a wicked case of ‘rachetjaw’ and if you don’t calm down I’m going to have to put you in the ‘quiet’ waiting room.”  Jim teased as he wheeled me to the reception desk at my doc’s office. “She’s baaaaack,” I sang out loud.  Maybe a little too loud.  Jim wheeled me in the quiet waiting room.

It was a good decision.  I was a mess. I started laughing till I cried. I hadn’t laughed like this for a long time. “I can’t believe how much you are talking and everything you are saying sounds like your Dad talking,”

“You’re dang straight!” I retorted. “And his cancer doc said, and I quote, that he was ‘tougher than owl shit’ and I think I earned that status today after how tough I’ve been today!” I peppered my poor husband’s ears with many majestic Marv euphemisms (“My veins are screaming, ‘what the heck??!!’) until he went to the magazine rack and brought me the catalog for the 2011 Philadelphia Antiques Show. I quickly became absorbed.  Does that man know his wife or what?!!

Pretty soon, my Doc’s “Fellow” came out.  He was still waiting on the report.  The radiologist was probably furiously typing it into the computer system. For whatever reason, “Dr. Fellow” couldn’t access it. In about five minutes he came back with the thumbs up.  I was going home!  His Rx:  take baby asprin for the next 10 days and wear a TEDS sock.

“You want me to wear a TEDS sock!!??”  Dr. Fellow instantly made me feel 70 years old. My Dad wore TEDS socks for the last few years of his life.  He whined about very few things but he hated wearing those suckers.  It took two people to hike them up his legs. Plus, talk about ugly.  Daddy must have ordered his from the Frankenstein Goth store.

“What’s a TEDS sock?” asked Jim, recognizing the look of recoiling fear in my face. “They are compression stockings–Thrombo Embolic Deterrent–that help keep fluids from collecting in the lower extremities,” offered Dr. Fellow.

“It’s a DAD sock!” I translated. Jim immediately got it.

Great News! My new pair of Futuro Anti-Embolism Stockings are not Goth at all! I could wear these to a wedding!

“Our nurses frequently wear them when they have long shifts,” offered Dr. Fellow. Obviously he wasn’t familiar with the Roberson family experience with Frankenstein DAD socks.  I was encouraged that I could pick up a TED sock at the local CVS. Surely they can’t be too Goth. With that, we were free to leave.

We pulled out of the parking garage at 5:30. Just in time for rush hour. We didn’t care.  We were going home!  As we pulled off the exit, I got all emotional. First traffic light-green. Second traffic light caught us. Third, fourth and fifth–all green.  We pulled into our neighborhood development and I started to cry. I was HOME!  As Twinkie would say, lots of Aroo’s. I cried all the way into the garage.  Jim turned off the key, helped me out of the car.  I felt enough grit come back to greet the waiting dogs and my kids with a smile.

July 25, 2011

I Can’t Believe There’s No Butter

Filed under: Twinkie's Posts — by thepluckygastronome @ 3:17 pm

Twinkie here! Had to wait for Mom to finish stuffing her face with a cookie –sent in from one of Daddy’s generous co-workers–so that I can do a post!

I guess you already know people have a way of “going out” around here. First it was Girly, Mommy, then Tripper. After a week of being broken, the microwave got taken away for the day. The whole house was in uproar for a week while that sucker was out of commission! Can you imagine not having a microwave in a land of leftovers?!! Brother learned there are stovetop cooking directions for his Chef Boyardee. A revelation…  Pots and pans suddenly needed Brillo!

Daddy and Brother yanked the machine out of the wall and took it to Pennington–apparently, only one location in the tri-county area services Dacor appliances. Since the repair guys couldn’t come here in a timely fashion, Daddy took the microwave to them. $42 later… problem solved–in one day.

Everyone is distracted around here. Girly was pouting because she forgot to put the sugar in the peach pie recipe. Ick! I’ll eat just about everything, but I’ll pass. It would give me the runs.

Yesterday was Grandma’s birthday. Auntie D made a cake for her, and everyone ate it there in the hospital. Mommy cried because she couldn’t be there. I snuggled between her feet while she “Arooo’d”. Half a tissue box and a headache later, she was okay. I’m still sticking to Mommy like glue. She is sleeping a lot more lately.

Maybe its the weather; it has been very, very hot this past week. I like laying down on the concrete and get toasty, but Daddy calls Tripper and me inside not long after. He’s concerned about the heat since we are so furry.

Must go! Girly just told Mommy the house is out of butter.

“Out of butter?” asks Mommy incredulously. “How can that be? We never, ever, run out of butter.”   Uh-oh. Gotta go.

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