Fill in the Blanks

LDK has taken a toll on my body and spirit. So many times I begin drafting a post, only to realize that it’s a carbon copy of the one before it. Instead of another laundry list of complaints, I thought I’d bring you up to speed on life in between LDK episodes.

Over the past week, things have been absolutely crazy for Seth. He’s been working nearly around the clock to “keep the lights on” during some technical issues. It doesn’t irritate me or anything like that. He’s great at what he does, and I’m very proud of him.

Even with little time to spare, he put together a thoughtful Valentine’s Day gift. I was hoping to get a card as I have in years past. And I figured with everything going on he could get it during the day and give it to me in the evening. Imagine my surprise when, first thing in the morning, he came bounding down the stairs with a card and present. The card was perfect, and inside the red ribbon-tied box were tons of milk chocolate covered pretzels – my favorite!

February 14 is also Shadow’s birthday. I had to choose one when I adopted him many years ago, and Valentine’s Day seemed perfect for a pony I love so much. We’ve asked several vets, and most of them agree on his approximate age. Shadow turned 37 years young yesterday! He was treated to a warm apple and carrot mash.

We were originally going to visit the farm this weekend. But with everything going on at Seth’s work, we decided to postpone our trip. Since we are driving – not flying – we have the flexibility. I do miss my mom and the animals, so we will reschedule for some time soon.

Earlier in the year (during cycle three, I guess) I was able to handle some other matters too. I applied to continue my dental insurance via COBRA and moved my 401k to a new IRA. Then I needed to figure out what to do about life insurance. As you can imagine, no one in their right mind wants to insure a stage 4 cancer patient! I did a lot of research and found a broker who could offer me a couple of very small policies. Luckily I had a better option. I was able to convert my group life insurance to an individual whole life policy. It’s quite expensive (relative to standard life insurance) but is the best option for me. Because it is a conversion, there are no health questions or possibility of denial. It’s not a lot of coverage (no one will become a millionaire), but I feel better having it in place. My next piece of business is to complete a will and living will. It’s not as macabre as you might think; these documents, as well as a life insurance policy, are good things for all adults to have.

Finally, an update on the girls. Gracie has fully recovered from her most recent ear surgery; but because of the angle in which it healed, the doctor may need to do another, smaller procedure. The ultimate goal is to prevent all future ear infections. She had to have this same set of surgeries on her right ear last year.

Blossom has been both naughty and nice. She has been very affectionate towards me, even more so than usual. When she hops into bed to snuggle I feel so warm and fuzzy and loved. On the naughty side, her evening bathroom behavior has been sub-standard. I’ve threatened a vet visit if she doesn’t shape up. (Any change in behavior can indicate that something is wrong.) The vet visit would just be a precaution, though, because she is behaving normally otherwise. Silly bunny…

I think that fills in the blanks. And I hope I’ve shown that, despite other issues, life does move forward. There are clearings between the LDK storms. My next scan is this Tuesday, February 19. I expect to see continued stability and maybe even a little more improvement. At my appointment two days later (Feb 21) I will ask for the second of two dosage reductions. Hopefully the doctor will agree to drop me to 450mg / day. At that point, I will allow LDK one more cycle to see if the side effects improve. That means “sticking it out” for another three weeks. If you don’t hear from me sooner, I’ll let you know how that appointment goes.

I hope you enjoy your weekend. I’m still wishing for a significant snowfall. I want to play in the snow!


5 responses to “Fill in the Blanks

  • readytotell

    Jessica. I had a horrible day today. And got home to find your post. You choosing not to complain when you are truly feeling pain and discomfort was a wake up call for me.
    You don’t even mutter a curse word.

    What do I have to complain about? That I have to do annual reviews at work that are definitely not my favorite thing to do?
    That I didn’t get the bonus I thought I would get? That a picture of me showed my sagging neck and emphasized how much I need a facelift? That I feel lonely not having my children at home because I was a good mother who raised them to be confident and secure at 21 and 28? They are living their lives.
    I need to get a grip and stop feeling so blue. I got CT scan results on my low dosed CT SCAN and the good news is my lungs are in stable shape. No changes in the minute sized nodules I have. They did see the signs of a hietal hernia which the doctor said is perhaps causing acid reflux into my lungs. So they are increasing my acid reflux med.
    Funny I recall my Mother had a hietal hernia. Perhaps I inherited one. I have no complaints. I didn’t even know I had acid reflux.
    So why do I complain?

    Life is what we say it is. You say you want to play in the snow. I say, please God, let it snow for Jessica!

    • Jessica

      Hi Linda!

      I think everyone has the right to complain about something. Everything is relative, and there’s nothing wrong with you being frustrated with your bad day, no matter what that means to you.

      I’m glad that what I share widens your perspective and allows you to appreciate those wonderful things in your life even more than you had before.

      I am delighted to hear about your stability. Thanks for sharing the good news! I had not previously heard of a hietal hernia, but I used the power of the Internet to learn. 😊 I’m glad you are asymptomatic with regards to the potential acid reflux. I also take a boatload of acid blockers (omeprazole) since I started treatment.

      Thanks for your wish for snow! We’ve only received “nuisance snow” so far: just enough to make the roads and sidewalks slippery. I have snow cream and snow angels to make. Who knows… Maybe Seth and I will even start a snowball fight with some neighbors!

      xo Jessica

      PS: If anyone reading this regularly takes an OTC medicine for acid reflux (Prilosec et al), see your doctor! He can write you a script, and you will save a lot of money! (You also may have an underlying condition you are only masking.)

  • Sjoukje

    Hi Jessica! Thanks for sharing! Hope today’s scan goes well.

  • Mary Ruggiero

    Best of luck regarding the upcoming scans and lowered dosages. Love hearing about the animals and Seth is a darling. Big hug to you.

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