Tuesday, 26 August 2008

Flipping Through Pages

I’ve done the work for you. I flipped through the pages of four journals to see what August has to offer. If you’re interested, read on.

Flashbacks From The Month Of August

August 11, 2002

*On Friday I went with Nadalene to see Charlton’s new apartment. I love it. There is a sunroom and it is a beautiful yellow colour. Really enjoyed Nadalene, she was really excited to show me the place.

*Nathan picked me up from work today (like he has been doing all summer). I thank him every day, but I wonder if he realizes how much I appreciate it. TONS!

*The definition of adventure to me would be to experience something out of your daily routine, it doesn’t necessarily have to be uncomfortable, risky, or physical – but on the other hand – it wouldn’t be going to a restaurant I’ve never been to before, although it could be meeting new people who interest me. I am going on an adventure with Angelique and Nadalene to Calgary. It will be a girl’s road trip.

*I am totally looking at it as having an adventure with two of the most wonderful people I know. Two people in fact who I gave birth to.

*On a scale of 1 to 10 on how adventurous I am, I would say internally I would be an 8. Ready for a lot, but externally and in actual fact probably a 3. I hold myself back saying: too old, too heavy, first get in shape, etc. I have wasted years saying that even though I may not have been conscious of it.

*I never had any adventure heroes when I was a child and nor do I now. In a way I did look up to ‘hippies’. I thought they lived so freely. Even now, I still have a soft spot for anything or anyone I would classify ‘hippyish’.

August 21, 2002

*I want to be more immersed in the world. Press release would read ‘Chapter 1 Renee the Growing Years. Chapter II Renee the Mothering Years. Chapter III Renee the Knowing and Loving Me Years.’

*Some adventures I would like to do are make a pilgrimage; follow my heart; and dare to say yes.

August 7, 2003

*Mom just got out of the hospital on August 5th, she was in there for eight days. Her heart and mainly her lungs, she is now on oxygen. The family showed how truly selfish they all are. Shelly went up every morning and stayed for a few hours. Suzie, Jacquie and I went up everyday and stayed for about 6 hours. Angelique, Nadalene, Nathan and Wahid came up almost every day. Other members came to the hospital maybe once in eight days and stayed maybe an hour. Pathetic losers. Share the responsibility of your parents’ people.

*Irritants that I tolerate in my daily life are stuff not put away; needless chatter; myself; greasy hair; and clutter.

*I want to be happy, I want to be satisfied, and I don’t want to blame other people because I am neither happy nor satisfied.

*My body is completely unhealthy and if I don’t take care of it, it will take me nowhere. My facial feature most identifiably me are my eyes. My body feature most identifiably me is my large breasts and my big stomach.

August 4, 2004

*Meal times in my childhood home were chaotic. Everyone came in the kitchen to say Grace, and then got food out of pots. The family was large so you took ‘A’ piece of meat and then lots of potatoes and some canned vegetables. Then the older kids and parents would go eat in the living room watching TV and the younger ones would eat at the table. I remember eating mostly at the table. Also, we ate at 5:00. Today I still eat supper at 5, and we always said Grace when the kids were small. We have slacked off saying Grace.

*Those early experiences have probably affected me in some ways. Tough call. If I like something I will tend to eat a lot of it right away, saving none for after. Because when I was a child you either ate it right then because otherwise it would be gone and there was nothing like having seconds unless you wanted more potatoes.

August 27, 2005

*I went for a mammogram and the results were good. No problems. Saw Dr. Smil and blood tests were good.

*Angelique and Nadalene had a wonderful time in New Orleans.

August 28, 2006

*Sitting in a hospital bed about to get blood transfusions. I hope they will make me feel better. Been feeling gaggy and sick.

*Angelique, Nadalene, Jacquie and I went to see Cirque Soleil Delirium and it was absolutely fantastic. I loved it. We had awesome seats in the fourth row.

*Colette and I had a nice walk on the beach. A little beach; a little walk, but it was really nice.

*Mickey is always entertaining.

*I do have the appropriate clothes for my life right now, which means no sleeves so they can access my PICC for any cancer treatments. Comfortable pants and tops as I can’t wear a bra. Really all I do besides sitting at home is go to two group meetings. I could dress better for these but I just can’t be bothered.

*God help me. I don’t want cancer, but I know I will have it forever.

Flash Forward

I am so irritated right now after reading my entry from August 27, 2005 regarding the mammogram. At that point, it had probably been my fifth visit to Dr. Smil, as I was concerned about my breast. It was hard like an orange, very high on my chest, and my nipple was receding. She still gave me nothing for it, but I was becoming more insistent that it wasn’t just me going into menopause. I am on the internet so much now and I wonder why the hell I didn’t go on a breast site and look at a breast with my symptoms, I would have seen my breast staring right back at me on the Inflammatory Breast Cancer site. I hate to admit to you all that this went on (me visiting her, her saying it is probably nothing) for eight months. And for anybody who knows about IBC, you will realize that it only takes weeks to a few months for IBC to be Stage IV. Time is of the essence.

Nothing I can do now, however, so I guess I just have to wipe up the milk instead of crying over it.

Please everyone do me a favour. YELL. If you think there is something wrong with you, don’t play nicey-nicey about it. Forget about how you were raised, become animal. Let your inner bitch roar. Remember that many breast cancers are not detected by a mammogram. As a matter of fact, in my metastatic group at one time I asked the question of who was diagnosed by a mammogram and only one woman was. At the time I was the only one with IBC and the rest of the woman had a lump. So even if your mammogram is okay, but you feel there is something wrong, insist on a biopsy.

p.s. Can you guess who my family doctor is now? If you guessed Dr. Smil, then you are correct as usual King Friday. Like Nadalene says ‘MD doesn’t stand for magical doctor, it stands for medical doctor’ and even though she dropped the ball here (death sentence) she is good in other areas.


jacquie said...

although i also still have dr smil as my doctor today .. i just can't let go of the anger towards her for letting that ball drop with all of the dire aftermath.
that being said i am also angry at myself for not asking to see your breast sooner and then getting straight to the internet to find out more.
as you stated ... the ibc breast picture was like your breast looking right back at you.
i don't think i will ever get over the fact that you had it for so many months and it was not diagnosed much sooner.....but that only leads us to wasted life energy on the what ifs....
i am angry and bitter about all of this and don't know if i will ever be able to truely let go and move on.
you do not deserve to have cancer
you and your beautiful family should not have had to suffer the torment of cancerland and all it entails .... for this i am truly heart broken.
i can't believe i regressed to why you and your family as it is also a waste of life energy and as nadalene has said from the start
together strong....jacquie

jacquie said...

me again ..sorry still angry
i remember taking a list of all the symptoms of ibc to the breast cancer screening center when i went for a mamagram.
i asked the technician who took my mamogram if they are aware of these signs for ibc ? she said no ...to which i asked if they send a report stating that if the mamogram looks clear that just by looking at a person's breast (yours) which looks obviously not normal ... do they at least put that in the report for the person reading the mamogram as a red flag to look further ???
i was then advised that even if it is blatant that a person's breast looks abnormal they are not allowed to put this in their report!!
i did not go off the deep end but could not believe what she just said ... i calmly asked why and she told me that they are not to put anything in their report that may change how the mamogram is read... i told her that i was not judging her as she is not the person reading the results but put up my list on a bullitin board for all women to see... and i also gave dr smil the same list for any other person she may treat regarding breast exams and made sure to advise her that time is critical as in most cases ibc is not detected until stage 3 ..if you are lucky.
for us now ...it is a bitter pill to swallow as the damage is done and your mental / physical and emotional suffering goes on daily for you and all who love you.

Renee said...

Just an aside to Jacquie's second comment.

IBC is never diagnosed as under Stage 3B. If it were it would not be IBC. That is just one of its criteria. As it is already involving an area outside of the breast which in most cases would be the skin.

The thing with the misdiagnosis of my IBC is that no matter what I would have had IBC. The timing was what stage my IBC would have been caught in, either Stage 3B which is still curable or Stage 4 which is terminal.


Anonymous said...

"YELL"? sorry, I am F...ing SCREAMING...!

The walk on the beach was beautiful and I am sure it was the most beautiful beach also.