Thursday, April 30, 2009

It's over!

I went in for my follow up mammogram today & got squished. It wasn't as bad as the last time. Maybe it was the veiled threats & passive-aggressive comments I was making to the technician. I shared this joke as I was waiting to get switched to a 2nd piece of equipment when the first was not performing as expected:


I actually kept my mammogram appointment. I was met with, 'Hi! I'm
Belinda!' This perky clipboard carrier smiled from ear to ear, tilted
her head to one side and crooned, 'All I need you to do is step into this room right here, strip to the waist, then slip on this gown. Everything clear?'

I'm thinking, 'Belinda, try decaf. This ain't rocket science.'
Belinda skipped away to prepare the chamber of horrors.
With the right side finished, Belinda flipped me (literally) to the left and said, 'Hmmmm. Can you stand on your tippy toes and lean in a tad so
we can get everything?'
Fine, I answered. I was freezing, bruised, and out of air, so why not use the remaining circulation in my legs and neck and finish me off?
My body was in a holding pattern that defied gravity (with my other boob wedged between those two 4 inch pieces of square glass) when we heard,
then felt a zap! Complete darkness and the power went off! 
'Oh, maintenance is working. Bet they hit a snag.' Belinda headed for the door.
'Excuse me! You're not leaving me in this vise alone are you?' I shouted.
Belinda kept going and said, 'Oh, you fussy puppy...the door's wide open so you'll have the emergency hall lights. I'll be right back.'
Before I could shout 'NOOOO!' she disappeared.
And that's exactly how Bubba and Earl, maintenance men extraordinaire,found me, half-naked and part of me dangling from the Jaws of Life, and
the other part smashed between glass!
After exchanging polite 'Hi, how's it going' type greetings, Bubba (or possibly Earl) asked, to my utter disbelief, if I knew the power was
Trying to disguise my hysteria, I replied with as much calmness as possible 'Uh, yes, yes I did thanks.'
'You bet, take care ' Bubba replied and waved good-bye as though I'd been standing in the line at the grocery store.
Two hours later, Belinda breezes in wearing a sheepish grin. Making no attempt to suppress her amusement, she said, 'Oh I am sooo sorry!' The
power came back on and I totally forgot about you! And silly me, I went to lunch. Are we upset?'
And that, Your Honor, is exactly how her head ended up between the clamps...

But I digress. The good news is that they showed me where the spot was on the first images, they were able to take more images & have a doctor look at them right away. So, (a) "it's nothing, come back in a year," and (b) I don't have to do this again for a year! SUCCESS!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

SOME good news

My doctor called & left a message for me at home (not my cell), which I didn't get until about 20 minutes ago (thanks again for calling, Kim!). In his message, he said that he's pretty sure it's a skin fold (how this would be possible, given the contortions and stretching, I have no idea), but since it's my baseline, he wants me to have more images done for the right breast. SO, he's unconcerned that it might "be something," but still needs me to go back in. I've already got the appointment scheduled for next Thursday. I'll just get it over with. That's all I want -- to have this all over with!

Okay, now I'm really upset.

I'm crying my head off right now. My boobs hurt. My left one (the one that got smashed more) really hurts. It's like a dull ache, distracting me all the time. The imaging center called & wants me to come back for another set of scans plus an ultrasound. They won't tell me why, and all I can think is why would they call first thing in the morning unless there was some cause for concern? And why an ultrasound? They've sent the scans to my doctor, but they want to schedule something for me within less than a week, rather than wait for him to look at them. I told them that they were causing an awful lot of panic, and all they said was they couldn't tell me anything other than they needed more scans and an ultrasound. I told them that my breasts hurt so much I could not even consider having another scan in another few days. So, I've put a call into my doc and I scheduled my scans and ultrasound for next Thursday. I can't tell if I'm crying more because it hurt, I hurt, and it'll hurt again ... or if I have a deep fear they've found something. I think the latter is less on my mind than the former, that's for sure. What happened to compassion in medicine, anyway?

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Can I just say ... OW!!! ?

I'm turning 40 this year, which I'm cool with. I don't mind being 40. Or even 50. I'm happy to be alive, man.

But, one of the things that comes with turning 40 is getting a baseline mammogram. (Well, some women get theirs at 35, especially if there's a family history of breast cancer, but I'm luckily not in that category.) I've heard anecdotes about mammograms. Most of us have gotten the tongue-in-cheek email about practicing for a mammogram by slamming one's breast in a freezer door or having a spouse back a car over a boob.

If any of my friends need to go for their first mammogram, I will happily go with them, and sit with them until they actually get called in to get smashed. My sweet husband went with me for moral support, except it didn't have the desired effect because I was left in a changing room for 10 minutes wearing a giant paper towel, slowly getting more and more panicky & shivering from the chill.

I will say this ... the experience wasn't as painful as I thought it could be. But it sure as hell was not a walk in the park. I fully expect to have bruises tomorrow. I am a large chested woman, and I can see where for women with small breasts it would not be a picnic for a variety of reasons. Still ... it was decidedly uncomfortable for 4 of the 6 squishes. And one of them was just painful. PAINful, people. Brought tears to my eyes. And the technician was just reading off a script, not a scrap of empathy to be found.

As I write this, I realize my left boob (the one that was in PAIN from one of the squishes) is throbbing. I say again ... OW! Who came up with this torture device? I suppose I should be grateful that we've got this detection equipment. And if it catches anything & saves my life, I will be abjectly, prostrately grateful. But right now...all I can think is ... "Ow. Ow. Ow." And, oh yeah, "Thanks for nothing, tech-lady."

Tuesday, April 14, 2009


Love this. Just love it. To know a bit of the backstory, click here. Or just watch it and be impressed by just how good she is.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

A very non-traditional Easter celebration

Today, our celebrations consist of
(1) breakfast from McDonald's ... as opposed to a large Easter brunch
(2) wandering around the Arboretum, taking photos ... as opposed to sitting in church
(3) wearing comfy clothes suitable for watching TV, running to the grocery store, and playing with cats ... as opposed to getting all dressed up
(4) going to the movies ... as opposed to going to hunt for Easter Eggs
(5) visiting our friends ... as opposed to visiting the Easter Bunny

Very different ... but also, very good!

Monday, April 6, 2009

You have GOT to be kidding me!


We must have some of the worst drivers in the world. Our mailbox got nailed. AGAIN. It was first knocked down in January 2007, by a plow, so the city put in a temporary mailbox. We meant to get a new one put up sometime over the summer, but time slipped away and it started snowing in October, and we missed our chance. So, April of 2008 comes around and some idiot in an SUV nails the temporary mailbox, so we coughed up the dough for a handyman to dig out the old concrete and post, pour new concrete, and sink a new post & attach the mailbox. It has been less than a year, now ... and look! I'm glad I kept the guys business card. Dang.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

go. see. it.

The House Theatre's production of this original work, Rose and the Rime, is simply outstanding. Go see it, now through May 9th. What are you waiting for? GO!

Don't believe me? Check out the massive list of reviews (overwhelmingly positive, but a few negative) on their blog.

Friday, April 3, 2009

This book is a colossal disappointment!

Moving Targets and Other Stories of Valdemar (Valdemar Anthologies) Moving Targets and Other Stories of Valdemar by Mercedes Lackey

My review

rating: 2 of 5 stars
I've read 9 of the short stories thus far ... and only 3 of them are mildly appealing. So far, this book is a huge disappointment. It definitely did not help that the lead story (NOT a novella, IMHO) is essentially a Scooby Doo episode, complete with Scooby, Shaggy, Fred, Velma, and Daphne, their van, AND a "I'd've gotten away with it, too, if it hadn't been for those meddling kids" line! Ick!

View all my reviews.