An Invitation to Join “The Society”

Join The Society! In my book, When the Whistle Blows, Jimmy learns about The Society, an organization started by his great-grandfather, Patrick Fineas O’Cannon.  Members of The Society promise to do kind deeds for others – sometimes total strangers – in order to honor family and friends who have passed away, and for whom they can no longer do kind deeds. I’ve decided to start The Society from When the Whistle Blows in real life. Every so often – maybe once or twice a month – I am going to offer an opportunity here on my blog for those who wish to become […]

Sir Elton John

I took Hannah to see Elton John last night at the John Paul Jones arena.  It was a splurge, but also a phenomenal mother-daughter bonding experience and a night neither of us will ever forget.  Although I was super-tired by the night’s end, I made it through, even with the (potentially seizure-inducing) strobelight effects! But between the water and the ear plugs and the high skewing age of an audience that liked to sit as much as it did stand, I held my own! (Not to mention a terrific husband who not only dropped us off but also picked us […]

My prognosis. And my reaction.

My oncologist was very happy to give me my pathology report two Fridays ago (March 11th) when I went to see him at UVA. It was not just good news, it was “great” news – the kind of news neurooncologists wish they could tell all of their patients every day of the year, but can’t. Because the news that neurooncologists generally have to tell patients is pretty hard stuff. The bottom line is that my brain tumor was what they thought it was. The dog barked.  The prognosis is much, much better than it could have been. It’s the best […]

Waiting for Oncologist at UVA

   I am in “my” corner office at the Emily Couric Cancer Center at UVA, waiting to see my oncologist, Dr. Fadul.  I was supposed to see him next Friday, but I’ve been having some pressure in my head this week, along with some unusual fatigue and water weight gain that made us all want to move my appointment up just to make sure I am okay. I’m feeling okay today – better than yesterday – but sluggish. I definitely overdid it in terms of activity this past week and I think I am just paying for it now.  I […]


Food and Cancer. As you can probably tell by my constant focus on food lately, I believe that what I do, nutritionally speaking, is going to matter a great deal in terms of how well and to what extent I heal and recover from my brain tumor surgery. I don’t mean that what I eat will totally dictate or control my prognosis or life expectancy, but I know it will have an impact – an important one.  Thus, what I choose to put into my mouth at each meal is becoming increasingly important to me. I now know: I need […]

The New and Improved (?) Gluten-Free Me

My nutritionist says I should be eating gluten-free.  Right at this moment, this sounds scarier than having brain cancer. I don’t mean to sound flippant in any way.  Brain cancer is serious stuff.  But eating “gluten-free” has also always sounded like a big mystery to my little mind.  It means I cannot eat any wheat.  It also means I should not eat many (any?) pre-packaged foods anymore either, which actually dovetails quite nicely with my new healing-cancer eating routine. But I need to explore exactly why I need to be gluten-free.  Why do I need to do it now?  What […]

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