Monday, December 30, 2013

Germs are bad mmmm'K?

It's been a long day, but turned out OK.
I seem to have caught a head cold over the holidays despite my best efforts. Boourns. Too many people in both sides of the family with slight colds seems to have been too much for my germ paranoia and weakened immune system. The past few days I've had a stuffed up head and scratchy throat but still reasonably OK until 5 am this morning when I woke up with a sinus headache and a fever of 101.3. So we went in to emergency and they tested me for all kinds of things to be sure I didn't have a weird  infection other than the head cold and finally ended up (after 4 long hours) going home with some uber antibiotics. My fever broke while I was there thankfully and I have to keep an eye on it -if my temperature goes above 100.4 I need to go in again. Hopefully it won't again.
Thankfully my wbc count is up and my immune system isn't too low so with the help of the antibiotics I should be able to fight this off on my own with some rest and still be on schedule for my chemo on friday. Here's hoping it goes away rather quickly. I can't take anything for it so it's annoying to deal with what would normally be nearly normal with a few advil cold & sinus. Antihistamines and tylenol masks the fever, which can be the only clue that I need medical attention so I can't take it. Advil is a no no because it mucks with your blood clotting factors so it's a no no too.

I have to say -it's still amazing to me how many people go out and about when they are ill. I've been germophoby as much as possible, but I made exceptions for christmas with a few family members who didn't think they were contagious anymore...and snacked on things that were buffet style which I normally would have avoided (it was christmas goodness...and I was actually hungry...). Add to that the fact that we have gone to see a few movies in the last week and I suppose it was inevitable. Perhaps I should have worn a mask...live and learn. I will have to be more careful in the future. I got off lucky. There is a nasty cold and flu going around and I'm glad I don't seem to have caught that.
 
Moral of the story -Hermits are bored but plague free.

I plan to rest and knit and relax with lots of tea and let this run it's course. I hope to feel up to going see J do lights for the bands of a few of our friends on new year's eve for a bit, even if I have to wear a mask. Here's hoping I feel up to it and I can. After that I'll hermit it up until I'm done treatments. Honest.

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Ho Ho Ho

Well hello there. I hope you all had a wonderful holiday season. I sure did.
My sister and her husband and my dad were all here until yesterday and it was so nice to just visit, play games and munch with them for a few days. We so seldom get the whole family together...it was great. My niece fit her lab coat perfectly and didn't want to take it off. I felt good the whole time too and am getting my appetite back so I could enjoy the delicious and bountiful food. We've even gotten out to see the Hobbit movie. (Movie popcorn seems to be the one thing I can eat no matter what...so yum).

There were a few family members with sniffles over the holidays so I tried to be germophobey and seem to be OK so far so hopefully I didn't pick up anyone's cold over the holiday with my immune system being low - I am the queen of isogel at the moment. Trying my best without being a hermit. I pushed myself a bit, but had a wonderful time.

I spent time with my BFF making gingerbread houses and when Dad came he helped us prep for our christmas present to ourselves. We bought an electric wall mount fireplace for our chilly basement and Dad wired in a power line for it...and then when we saw the specs for it he also helped us build out the basement wall as well. We didn't mean for it to be so much work, but the ledge around our basement wall would be in the exact spot as to be a fire risk for the fireplace so Dad built up the wall flat to the ceiling and yours truly mudded it. after 4 patch coats it's ready to prime and paint - it should be all finished by the end of the weekend so we can put up the fireplace. Definitely much more complicated than we meant it to be, but it will look great in the end *and* we won't burn the house down when we use the fireplace...definitely a good thing!
J has many days off with me while I'm feeling better - my next treatment isn't until the 3rd so I am trying to be good and relax next week...paint some wall, knit some hat, eat some more turkey and drink my weight in tea. Y'know - all the important stuff :)
I'm off for the tea and a good book.
Happy holidays and all the best in the new year :)

Friday, December 20, 2013

I heart my exercise bike

I really do. I have been having some odd muscle aches and cramps latlely from chemo, so one of the suggestions I was given was to get moving a bit just to keep active and not lose any (more) muscle.
So this morning after breakfast I broke out the exercise bands just to move my arms a bit and hopped on my spanky new bike (who I keep calling Spanky) for 20 minutes...Which seemed like an eternity, but I kept pedalling steadily until I was done and stretched after and man...I feel lovely. I makes sense that you would  have odd muscle pain going from lots of activity to none, and there is also a low risk of blod clots in chemo, so I have decided I am really going to make an effort from here on to hop on the bike every day for at least 20 minutes...doesn't have to be hardcore - Just pedalling and a little sweat. I am hoping that a bit of light resistance band work will help the cramps in my left arm as well. We shall see. It seems like so little after what I used to do but it is still a great start.
All I know is it's nice to have been active again.
Hooray!

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Smack down

I'm not gonna lie-yesterday kinda sucked. It ended up alright with a visit from my brother and a new pair of PJs at the end, but before that I spent a large part of the day curled up with cramps, nausea and sweats and feeling very miserable indeed. I think my bright idea to eat a big ol bowl of greek yogurt for breakfast didn't help things...itwas supremely dim of me-live and learn. It is far too easy to slack on little things to look after yourself properly when you feel somewhat ok...and then your body reminds you about just what you're dealing with again. 
Consider me suitably chastised.

 I have some random muscle cramps in my arm today but feel much better. I am going to try and sew a bit, nap and just relax today and hope for a better day.
Here we go.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

BFF

My friend Cindi is sadly on her way back home again but I'm so glad she came for a few days. It really cheered me up. I had a few good days when she was here, so we were able to hang out, make a few cookies and watch christmas movies. You know those few people you've known forever since high school that are always there when you need them? Yup...that's her. :) Sweet lady she is - she brought me a lovely hat and another christmas robot for my tree. While she was here I finally saw that old Christmas Story movie from the 70s with that leg lamp I keep seeing everywhere...it's bizarre. And my contribution was Opus's Wish for Wings that Work. Odd choices I know - we honestly tried to just find White Christmas to watch, but it wasn't on PPV while these were (???) so hey :) We just hung out and caught up...we never get to do all that enough with family and life and all. It was great. :)

Now that she's gone home I'm realizing Christmas is in a week! Meep.  My Dad has announced he is arriving friday (ulp) and staying for a week and my sis gets in sometime on monday...so we will have everyone here for the holidays. I've finished up Lily's lab coat and will try a bits more christmas baking (to have a few gluten free things) if I can when I feel up to it...but other than a bit of wrapping I think I have what I HAVE to have done completed. I don't want to overplan and try and do what I may not be able to (so hard not to!) so I'm just trying really hard to take it easy...I pushed myself a bit when Cindi was here so I'm just resting up and being good until the family arrives. Now is just looking after myself and resting instead of rushing and hecticness. It's a new kinda zen thing...trying to make it work. So far so good. Tricky tho...I always feel like I should be doing more...

All will come in time I'm sure. :)

Sunday, December 15, 2013

#3

Chemo #3 is in the bag. My wbc was good so all is on schedule-huge relief. Yesterday I felt pretty good so I did some sewing on Lily's little lab coat I am making for christmas...it is turning out so well. Since I have a serger I can finish up all the seams and edges and it should outlast her :). J is going to try and get her name monogrammed on it for me. If we can't in time I have some silver iron on letters so it's all good. It's nice to have things to putter at when I feel up to it and I love making gifts...means more to me. My FIL made me a big batch of zemma borcht (german potato ham dill soup...one of my fave) to eat for the next few days. I will stay away from the eggnog for a week (sniff) and eat carefully and have lots of my delicious smoothies and I am sure things will muddle through as they have before

If the roads are decent my BFF Cindi is coming from Alberta today to visit me for a few days to keep me company. We plan to watch movies in PJs and bake some cookies and catch up. We never seem to have enough time to just visit, so I am hoping she can make it out here.

Just planning for some lazy days recovering from the worst of things. The uber anti nausea meds they give you for the 3 days after chemo also give you random energy spurts (often at bedtime...grrr) so I have little projects and a few good books. For now, a smoothie awaits me...and maybe a short walk in the sun if this warm -2 day they promised us arrives :)

Later taters...

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Oh eggnog - Is there anything you can't do?

I just cooked up some multigrain porridge in coconut milk and served it up with toasted organic coconut flakes, fresh blueberries and...wait for it...eggnog.

I am in pleasure piggy heaven :)

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

This post is brought to you by the letter N and the number 1/2

I have been working half days all week. Napping lots. Just don't have the ooomph to do a full day and have just tried to do what I can when I can. Even my boss is saying "go home" so I don't feel too bad about it. I am trying to stay away from all the sneezies out there and have finished my christmas shopping. I have a few things to make as gifts and just mailed off my parcels to my family out east. The apple hat turned out Ok...and luckily for me they live far away so if they think it's terrible and he never wears it I will never know :P
I am learning my new pace.
Grudgingly.
I will take tomorrow off and rest because I can and have just one most of a day of work thursday before I leave early for my prechemo checkup. I hope and pray my wbc count is up so I can have my chemo dose friday. Not that I look forward to it that much, but it would mean I will feel rather Ok for christmas with my family if it is on schedule so I am crossing fingers and toes and all appendages and will try and be kind to my body until then. I likely wont be in much to work after that...but I am starting to be OK with that.

For  now I will try to be content with making up christmas cards for my friends and coworkers to mail. Sewing a little lab coat for my niece who is a little mad scientist. Eating eggnog everything (I recommend the french toast...burp).

Friday, December 6, 2013

Minus dickety two

It's hoth cold out today. I decided to brave it with ski pants and all my winter kit and come in to work. It's christmas work lunch today, which I admit tipped the scales towards me coming back today in stead of monday :) It's nice to be back...time to see what hasn't exploded or broken in my absence!
I'm almost done the hat I've been knitting so I can mail it off monday...I am working to get all my christmas shopping/mailing done before my next chemo on friday so that I don't have to worry about it. I only have a few things to mail so if I can get them ready to go on monday I should be fine. We are just making things or nibbly foods for gifts so there isn't too much to do really other than things I enjoy like sewing and baking. I have a few napkins and placemats to make as a gift, but those will take no time at all...just have to meet with my bro and SIL who will be receiving them to pick out fabric for them and then I can do that as time permits before christmas.

I love christmas.

Now that my appetite is back I am working to not EAT ALL THE THINGS. The complete lack of appetite I have after chemo is really odd (I love food). Just not hungry at all. So I just eat healthy small meals when I know I should  to keep me fueled. Now that I'm hungry again...there isn't an off switch yet it seems, so I am struggling to be the same way still. Getting used to feeling hungry again. It's very strange indeed. So my goal is to still just eat good meals when I should and not nibble away my days (so hard!). I know I should regain a pound or two from the bit of loss I have had in the last few weeks so I'm trying to just eat well and see how it goes. I am excited top to hop on the bike on monday (the official "ok" time after my port insertion) and get some endorphins in me too, which should help with my overall energy. Yes. All in good time... Balance is the word of the week it seems. For now, I'll just start with some work on getting through a day without a nap :)

Anyhoo...should go see to this work business I suppose :)

Thursday, December 5, 2013

That's just creepy

Am I the only one who find the Elf on the Shelf incredibly creepy?
It seems to be some holiday thing I don't understand...I wouldn't want that guy in my house staring at me. Gives me the gibblies :)

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Apple hat

Ok...doing some christmasy things today to cheer myself up. Knitting Cute hat for my nephew's boy and drinking delish decaf watching the snow. It is a cold one out today and I am most glad to be indoors. I just don't feel like going back to work yet. I likely will friday...moreso to go out for holiday lunch with the girls than get back to work. After a bit of digging I have learned that my sick leave benefits are the same whether I work or not...so I am not rushing back. I need to rest. Tonight I plan to hang a few more decorations in the house and then I get to have supper with my brother who I havent seen in over a month, so it should be a better day today. Less moping, I promise.
Must do what I can and hope for the best and what will be will be for now...will keep an eye on Gavin and keep catty things clean and see what comes for now. The thought of a cat diaper made me giggle uncontrollably...I mean No way would my cats endure that :). A collar is pushing it and an attempt at a top hat once resulted in much blood and hissing...the 1 second it was on was hilarious tho...!
Hope you have a good day. 

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

cats weasel their way into you hearts, yes they do

I am a sad panda.
Here's the situation. We have two 19 year old cats. Love them to pieces. One old grey tabby, who is now a bit cranky and very deaf, is mine (from before I even met J...if I can imagine such a time ever was) and the other brown ball of purring is his. They now co-habitate and both keep me company while I am at home dealing with chemo.  I am allergic to cats but these guys don't bother me much. They are worth the odd sniffle :)

Unfortunately one of them has been peeing randomly the last year or so...from old age I think...and we were good friends with the rug shampooer. The old carpet we had was removed last month due to me being ill and it being rather catty -so that while home I could tolerate chemo better...and it has been lovely to be in a clean scent free house for almost a month... and now I do not know what to do about this guy. Today I awoke to find he had peed on the floor again. I just ....I cannot continue to have a cat who pees randomly in the living room...the new floors will eventually be destroyed and warped and you cannot clean that up repeatedly without permanent damage. It's behavioural. Had I not been sick, we would have waited for him to live his life out before we did this, but cancer changes things...

Now, the thought of confining him to a bedroom for the large part of the rest of his life (when we are not home or asleep) is heartbreaking...I can hear him meowing now already while he is kept separate until J get home and we can go out to get fresh litter for him. It would appear that, ultimately and sadly, we can't leave him alone when we aren't home (or when we are asleep) since it appears he will continue to make a mess occasionally. And occasionally is enough on wood laminate floors. I was sincerely hoping that when we replaced the floor he would not do this...but I suppose it was wishful thinking. We can't afford to replace flooring over and over again...

I sleep with these guys. They read with me. They curl up beside me on the couch and purr and keep me going on days when I feel poorly...My poor husband is having enough trouble dealing with me being sick... this is really not something to deal with on top of that right now. Living in Canada, it's below 0 a good 6 months of the year. Were it summer they could live happily on the screened in deck, but in winter they cannot go out so we have to find a solution. The thought of having to put a cat down for peeing is absolutely the last resort, so I am psyching myself up for lots of new and frequently cleaned litter boxes and putting him in a room while we are away/at night. It seems terribly cruel and I don't know if that is a life for a cat...but he continues to make messes in the house... we have to do something.  My J loves that cat to distraction. I know I know...ultimately...it's just a cat. But if you've had a pet you know...it's so much more...

I know I'm just moping, but this just really isn't the thing I'd like to be dealing with right now...I'm trying to get better so I can live the rest of my life...but I think for starters I need to take Gavin to the vet just to see if he has any new hidden health issues to start. I  have a feeling it may just be old age and we'll be throwing money away at vet bills...
Anyone have any advice? I'm confused and rather mopey and would welcome it...