Happy Mother’s Day!

I’m the tall one, in case you couldn’t tell! Being this girl’s mom is the best thing that’s ever happened to me. I thank God for her everyday. This Mother’s Day we all went out with Mom and Dad to brunch.  Towards the end of our meal I had another little episode of feeling bad.  My muscles felt like they were going rigid, especially in my stomach and face. It was difficult to smile – my cheek muscles became very weak.  We went home and I crawled into bed and slept for several hours. I still felt tired when I […]

Brain Tumors, Seizures, and Me – Oh My!

I made an unexpected visit to the UVA Emergency Room yesterday.  I thought I was having another seizure. I’d woken up feeling horrible – like I was going to pass out.  My muscles were twitching.  I felt spacey and very tired.  Scariest of all, I had pressure and twitching on my craniotomy scar, and my face looked a bit puffier (I didn’t think that was possible – but it was).  We were afraid it might be a brain bleed. Marshall called my oncologist’s office and she suggested I take an ambulance to the emergency room.  So Marshall called 911 and […]

Another Trip to the Emergency Room this Morning

An Unexpected Twist on My Unexpected Journey. Woke up feeling bad – faint with muscles twitching.  Very similar to when I first went into the emergency room when I was diagnosed.  Scary. Marshall took me to UVA ER.  Possible seizure.  CT scan shows no brain bleed, which is good news. Most labs are normal. It’s 12:50 pm and we are still at the ER. I’m not feeling as bad as this morning, but not feeling very good either.  Please keep me in your thoughts and prayers.

My First Birthday With Brain Cancer

April 20th was my birthday! I turned 49.  I don’t know if all people who have cancer feel this way, but I was certainly happy to be able to celebrate another birthday this year.  But I have to admit, it did make me look at the day a little more wistfully, a little more philosophically, than usual. I appreciate the opportunity to get older. I have always abhorred TV commercials and magazine advertisements that play to women who have been told their whole lives (by similar commercials and ads) that they need to look young forever.  This is utter horse […]

Cruising with Cancer on the Disney Fantasy

It was really great to get out of the house! Wow, was it ever good to get out of the house, to get out of the “recovering from cancer routine” at home, and to get out of my comfort zone a bit!  The whole family needed a vacation after all that has happened since my diagnosis in January.  It was great to just leave it all behind for awhile. The ship was just beautiful! And the weather (for the most part) and scenery were terrific. And there were lots of great things to do, like go on a semi-submarine ride […]

Cleared for Vacation!

Before I was diagnosed with brain cancer, our family had planned a Disney Cruise vacation.  Before my surgery, my doctors told me I’d need chemo and radiation so we thought we’d have to cancel our cruise. But with all the good news following  my surgery, the doctors have said I can go! We were planning to drive to Port Canaveral to make the trip cheaper (the Cruise itself was “free” since we are Disney Vacation Club members, thanks to a gift many years ago from my parents) but now the drive would be pretty difficult for me, so yesterday we […]

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 […]

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