Moving On

I finished my last chemo treatment last week, hobbled out of the hospital, saw a surprise party in the street with all of my loved ones, and started doing high kicks and ringing that bell like I was in a parade. My hospital doesn’t have a bell to ring so my sister gave me one. The kicks were more like medium-high kicks. Alright fine, knee-high kicks.



I was surprised to be a little scared about finishing chemo. It was something that was stopping this cancer in its tracks. I didn’t know for sure if it was working because my tumor hasn’t shrunk, but it still felt like it was saving my life.

Now that I’m done, I’m really done with that shit. I’m no longer worried about the cancer making a come back before my surgery. I did an MRI and mammogram on Friday and the doctor said it looks “mo better”.  He said there are calcifications which indicate a necrosis of the tumor, meaning it has shrunk in both the breast and lymph nodes.

My body would not be able to handle any more chemo–it was a lot. It was just the right amount. It did what it had to do, and I’m grateful. You get your last dose of chemo, and you want to have a party, but you still feel terrible. I’m finally on the mend and getting stronger and healthier every day.

I won’t talk politics in every post but I do still find myself relating my body to our country. We are both diseased and ugly at the moment. My country has a Trump and a have a Lump. But there can be victories big and small. Standing Rock will no longer have a pipeline through and under its river, and I will not have chemo flowing through my veins. I am losing my eyebrows and eyelashes, and my country is losing its dignity.  We might not look pretty doing it, but we will survive.



not always positive

I greet you from the other side of sorrow and despair, with a love so vast and shattered it will reach you everywhere.    -Leonard Cohen

Today I am unraveled and shattered. Yesterday I held it together and was positive. And all the days before that on this journey I have been brave. But not today. I wept my way through my 7th chemo treatment, and into the middle of the night.
Today I am sad for my country. I know next to nothing about politics- I admit I am not well educated or well-read on the matter, I don’t watch political shows. This is less about what I know to be true and more about how I FEEL- sad and scared.  I’m sad for the people in my country, on both sides of the divide. I’m sad that so many Americans were living in pain and dissatisfaction to such a degree that they cast their vote for a villain, a bigot, a bully. They were looking for anything, even something dark (or orange), to make their lives better. I wish people in this country could see how lucky we are. Can we imagine for a moment what our lives would look like if we had been born in Syria. Everyday I imagine what it would be like to be a refugee mother to a 3 and 1 year old baby. Have we forgotten that it is our privilege and duty and right to help others? When we have enough to eat and shelter over our heads- aren’t we able to give our extra away to those that have less than us. What good does protecting the wealthy (us) do -if the poor get poorer we all suffer. I might sound like a socialist, perhaps that is where my morals, ethics and values are aligned (the Bern). I think this is the way I came out of the womb- always feeling the pain and relating to the suffering of others.
I’m sad for the many families of hard-working immigrants that will now live in fear of deportation of loved ones. Their fear that their family could be torn apart. I’m sad that they are feeling abandoned. I wish I could say to them I love you, we need you, we are glad you are here. I’m sad about the hundreds, literally hundreds, of hate crimes that were committed today across our country in support of the populist demagogue we elected.
I’m sad for the LGBT community who won a long fought battle to marry only to fear their fair reward may potentially be taken from them. I’m sad for women who fear they may lose the ability to make decisions for their own bodies. I’m sad for the woman in this country whether they voted for him or not that will be violated physically or verbally because that is the example our new president has set for men to follow.
I’m sad for the sick, those with pre-existing conditions such a cancer, that depend on the affordable health care act. It’s unfortunate that most people with cancer, or other diseases, do not have access to legal medical marijuana. I’m here to tell you that it is the only thing that has brought me relief. I’m sad about the ever increasing opioid/heroin epidemic that is virally infecting our nation. (which also could be helped by regulated medical marijuana)
I weep for the earth. I literally can’t stop weeping for the beautiful mother earth. That our fight to protect her will be placed on hold in the name of greed. The wetlands of Louisiana, the Standing Rock Reservation, the rainforest, the Great Barrier Reef, the waters, the  animals, the air, the trees, the ground. We need to make a conscious effort to make personal, professional, and govermental sacrifices to protect the earth. This protection comes at a great cost that we must all be willing to step up and pay for what we take and take and take. We are running out of time and resources. These next 4 years of potentially less regulation globally (China, cough, cough) could be apocalyptical. Who cares if we call it global warming or not, we must make changes and address the damage that we have historically and currently continue to inflict. Like another rapist I know, our global capital economy is raping the earth.
I’m scared that the checks and bounds system is not in place right now to protect our country and our world and our enemies from an unstable egotistical maniac. I’m afraid of his chummy relationship with Putin. I’m afraid of what could potentially happen in the supreme court and that the progress we have made in this country’s history can be erased. I’m afraid of the people that he will choose to surround himself with and appoint to positions of power. I’m afraid that our leader will lead his own people with strength, but not all of the people. I’m afraid that his ego will prevent him from creating bridges instead of walls. I’m afraid of the enemies that he will make in this country and abroad. I’m afraid that in the face of tragedy- will he have the words and guidance to comfort and heal our wounds. Does he love us? Any of us? All of us? Or just himself, his daughter, and his cronies. I’m afraid that love has nothing to do with anything anymore- have we been naive to say the word and think it mattered?
I’m sad for the beautifully diverse citizens of our country such as african americans, muslims, latinos, the poor and disadvantaged, the disenfranchised, the mentally challenged, the list list goes on. Many people in this country now feel like their elected leader, and the many people that voted for him, do not care about them.  I’m afraid I am becoming a racist against white people. I despise guns but I’m afraid we might need a way to protect our family because I’m afraid we are closer to a civil war, a race fueled war, a third world war, a nuclear war, a war with poverty, a war of racial tension, civil disobedience fueled by a hatred for one another that is reaching a boiling point. I am magically cloaked in white privilege and inherited wealth and living on luck but my heart is rioting in the street. I’m not sure if I deserved to land in this life i was given- it feels like a mix-up.
I’m sad for the death of the optimism that the majority of the citizens of this country had when they cast their vote for what they thought would be the first female president who also happens to be a competent and well prepared candidate for the most important job in our nation. I’m sad for the conversations that parents will have to have with their children about how bullies never win even though THAT bully won. I’m sad for teachers that I know that had very real conversations with their black, hispanic, ethnic, muslim students today about their very real fears of deportation, slavery, abandonment, hatred, white supremacy, and violence. I’m sad that love lost to hate.
I’m sad for my god-family who lost their son Wilkins to death by suicide last week. I weep with them and for them for this loss.  It’s a reminder of the millions living with deep struggles that can’t or won’t ask for help. I’m afraid one of the first things to be cut will be national funding for access to mental health.
I’m sad that Leonard Cohen died today, of all days, on the day that I am already unraveled. He has helped me through many rough patches before. Today, listening to his songs and reading his poems only makes me more sad.
and finally, finally people I can admit it, I’m sad for the first time that I have cancer. Today, all day. I have always felt like my body was a bulletproof tank and now it feels vulnerable and broken. I don’t mind being bald when I am confident and brave, but when I am sad or scared I look and feel pathetic and diseased. I’m sad for my children that the mother that birthed them is replaced by a less whole person. I don’t know what life will be like after cancer but there are parts of me that will be different- some better and some worse.
Perhaps its because my body is newly full of chemo”therapy”, jacked up on steroids, and sleepy on benadryl, and insomnia-ed right now. I’m officially in menopause, hormonally challenged, with hot flashes as I type this. I’m tired and ill and week and bald and pimpled and chemo brain is real. Perhaps it’s because my babies have a stomach virus and I spent my morning cleaning up vomit while trying not to hold them and risk getting very very sick myself. When my babies are sick I’m able to step up to the plate for them, but only for them. I’m sad for the future babies that I didn’t know whether or not I wanted to have but I hate that now I can’t have them. I mourn the possibility, I see their faces sometimes.
For the first time I feel sorry for myself. I’m bummed out that on top of everything else my ass hole is broken and I will need a surgery during the one week between chemo and mastectomy when I should be feeling ok and getting my life back in order and preparing for a massive surgery with a month-long recovery. Every morning I have a laxative and stool softener induced poop that feels like it is going to rip me open and kill me. I literally have a shitty and painful and scary time with the simple act of eliminating waste.The botox quick fix has caused me to lose control of gas and I assume if I am caught at the wrong place at the wrong time, my bowels.
I’m sad that at the end of this my body with be scarred and mangled and my new boobs will forever be numb and foreign. I’m sad for my husband that our intimate life will also suffer from the scars, the numbness, the hormone deficiency, the changes, the vulnerability, the fear of recurrence, the loss, the pain, the sadness, the shame, the dysfunction.
I’m scared that every recent story I have heard of young breast cancer survivors has ended in recurrence, spreading to new organs, or lymphodema, or death, or hysterectomy, or fat necrosis from surgery, or a loved one being diagnosed at the same time, or chemo brain that lasts forever, or debilitating neuropathy.
I knew this would be a rough year, I didn’t foresee that it would be a scary and sad 4 years for me. It turns out I may have been brave enough for cancer, but I’m not brave enough to be under the rule of the evil orange despot. Today was my day to be angry, sad, scared and negative. Tomorrow I go to work figuring out how to fight hate, how to organize ourselves to make positive change without the help of our government (like we did in New Orleans/ Katrina/ Nagin), how to guide our children towards good, to teach them empathy and respect for others, how to promote and implement peace. Assuming I can even get out of bed or open my eyes post treatment.
Even though I’m sad and scared- I truly believe that what comes next will be the antithesis of what we have now. I guess we need to take a step backwards, give hate a chance to boil to the surface, let it be heard and felt and reap havok, and then we rebuild something better than we had before.
Thank you for allowing me this day to fall apart and not be an inspiration to anyone. Please, if you do not agree with my beliefs or feelings, simply stop listening to me. This is a space for me to share my story. And don’t worry- I’m going to be fine, we are all going to be ok.

Botox and Breast Implants

“I never thought I would be married to someone with fake boobs.”

Sean Fisher


It cracked me up when my husband said this a few weeks ago. I never thought he would be married to someone with breast implants either. I also didn’t think I would get botox. I certainly never thought I would get botox in my rectum. But that happened today. Yikes.  Hopefully my poops will be far less excruciating and the fissure can heal.  I never thought I would have a blog, and I certainly never thought I would talk about my rectum on my blog. The lines are blurred between what is and should remain private.


Over the last few years my relationship to my breasts have changed. In pregnancy and childbirth you become accustomed to exposing your body, your “private parts” to doctors, ultrasound technicians, nurses, and midwives. Your body becomes a vessel for growing, delivering, and feeding a new person.

I was hoping for 2 natural births and ended up with 2 emergency c-sections after 24+ hours of labor. After each delivery our midwife would bring the babies to me for skin to skin contact and help guide the babies onto my breast for their first feed. Nursing a baby is both mind-blowingly bizarre and the most primal and natural thing we can do. My boobs became their boobs and they were voracious eaters. When they were hungry, I fed them, which was every 3 hours for the first 6 months. If you were around me and my babies, you probably saw my boobs (their boobs).  When I was a teenager, and the boys I knew were obsessed with boobs, I remember wondering what the big deal is. Nursing a baby makes sense, oh that’s what these are for! Breastfeeding isn’t easy but it is something that I loved doing, and I’m grateful that I was able to put these boobs to good use before losing them.


My supply dwindled and eventually ran out in May; in June I noticed that one breast still felt like it had milk in it, and in July I was diagnosed. I am still in the mode of thinking of my breasts as utilitarian milk makers. I ask every single doctor if my children are at risk for being fed through a tumor, the answer is always NO but they squirm in their seat at the thought.

I’m grappling with the thought that perhaps pregnancy, breastfeeding, or the accompanying hormonal changes provided the environment that my body needed to grow this cancer. I’m considered a pregnancy case because I was diagnosed within a year of having a baby. The tumor is large at 10cm, and the type is slow growing, so it has been there for a while, probably through both pregnancies and nursing both babies for almost a year each.

Tig Notaro is a comedian that had breast cancer. In one of her stand up routines she says that she made so many jokes about her tiny titties that they tried to kill her. I have always loved my B boobs–they were just right for me–big enough to be there but not big enough to draw any unwanted attention.  They have served me well (except for the time they tried to kill me), and I will miss them.


Attitude of Gratitude

It’s been a while my friends. I think I clambed up after I wrote about my butt fissures and then realized people were reading it. The fact that anyone is reading any of this kind of gives me the willies. I could spend a lot of time meta-communicating about how weird it is to have an audience read what is essentially my diary.

I just completed my fifth of eight treatments so I’m officially over the halfway through chemo mark. I’m feeling all over the place physically and mentally. The accumulation is taking an effect and every treatment seems to get harder, but different. New side effects pop up and the old side effects overstay their welcome. I am operating at about a 40% energy level on average. Some days slightly better and some days are worse. I see how this is an isolated period of time, and I’m in it and the hours are long. I’m sure I will look back on this chemo trip as a blip in hareless time. It is a hard time but also a special time when I am open and receptive to the help of others. Being bald has opened up an opportunity for strangers to reach out to me with kind gestures, a knowing nod, holding the door, asking questions or sharing stories of their experiences with cancer.

The thing that remains consistent is the outpouring of support and love. I’m traditionally terrible at sending thank you notes and it seems impossible now. I hope y’all know how thankful I am.

Thank you for the daily notes, the cards, anonymous  postcards, text messages, voicemails, Facebook and blog comments, and the prayers. These make me smile and lift me up. Thank you for continuously reaching out to our family.

Thank you for the gift packages of cozy sweaters, fancy hats, bath salts, monster slippers, yoga pants, hats with fake hair and my initials, play dough for the kids, flowers, art, binders of cancer notes, books of all kinds, boob shaped hard candies from France, hats, personalized blanket, Ganesh, giant bottles of hand sanitizer.  These are making my life more enjoyable, and who doesn’t love the thrill of opening a gift?

Thank you to friends, parents of friends, neighbors, chefs, and strangers that have delivered food and smoothies. I’m not always up for a meal but the 3 other mouths in my house are always hungry. When you are naseaus and fatigued with no appetite it is especially hard to make dinner for your family. And delicious meals keep showing up!

Thank you to anyone who makes my kids smile. I don’t know what we would do without our nanny Becca who goes above and beyond every day. We are so lucky to have 4 grandparents and 4 siblings that live nearby and scoop the kids up for an hour or a 4 day trip. My friends that spend the night when Sean is out of town, take them to the zoo or the park when I’m stuck in bed. On one hand it’s hard to accept that I need to outsource the role of parenting- but the kids are surrounded by love and they are happy to go off on new adventures. My sweet husband has tripple duty, especially in the morning, when the 3 year old, the 1 year old, and the 35 year old babies are all hungry and snotty and need help getting dressed. Oti’s precious Montessori school has been flexible with our changing needs and the teachers are always asking what they can do for us, as if molding him into a good human isn’t enough.


Thank you to my team of healers- my medical doctors, my non-traditional care-givers, the ones that help strengthen my body and spirit. I have some kind of an appointment almost every single day. I have a strong and competent team around me that treats me with compassion and expertise.

Thank you to the visitors- the ones that have come, the ones planning to come, the ones that are waiting on the green light from me. Last week I was in the dumpster physically and mentally- I was getting an IV in bed- and in walks a college bestie, and I lept out of bed in shock and didn’t go back in the dumpster until 3 days later after I dropped her at the airport. Mackenzie lives in Denver with three boys 5, 3, and 4 months old. On her 3 day break from her kids she bathed and fed mine and kept them laughing while I watched from the couch with tears of gratitude. This act of love reminded me how important it is to show up for people. Before I had kids I was better at this. I was a friend who showed up- even if I didn’t know what to say or do. I want to become that again as soon as I can. This year and this time is selfishly devoted to healing myself and taking care of my family with whatever I have left. I’m desperately looking forward to the time when I can pour more of myself into the world and onto others.


Let this be a reminder that all of these gestures, the grand ones and the flash of a text message are all helping me. To know that I’m supported and loved helps hold me up in this fight. It helps our family cope. It is keeping us all smiling.

People always ask what they can do for us and I try to delegate but I rarely know what to say. Looks like y’all know better than I do what to do in these tough times. I’m currently and eternally grateful for every.little.thing



Side effects may include…

In chemo school they gave me a binder with a list of general chemo side effects. For each corresponding number there are several pages of additional side effects. They give me medicine to combat some of these side effects- and those have side effects. I even created some of my own side effects in addition to these. If there was a commercial for chemo I’m sure I would learn of new side effects.

  1. Bone Marrow Suppression
  2. Anemia
  3. Bleeding/Bruising
  4. Infection
  5. Nausea
  6. Hair Loss
  7. Appetite Changes
  8. Constipation
  9. Diarrhea
  10. Dehydration
  11. Mouth and Throat changes
  12. Fatigue
  13. Blood clots
  14. Nervous System Changes/ Neuropathy
  15. Pain
  16. Chemo Brain
  17. Hearing Problems
  18. Flu-like symptoms
  19. Urinary, Kidney, and Bladder Changes
  20. Infertility
  21. Sexual Changes
  22. Fluid Retention
  23. Skin and Nail Changes

The main side effect that I experience from chemo isn’t even listed- hypotension. Super low blood pressure. I bought one of those arm band squeeze machines so I can track it at home and the jury is still out if that is a good or bad idea. It hovers in the 70’s range. I constantly feel light-headed and on the verge of passing out.

The most painful part of chemo is a side effect of the side effect of #8- a tear in my rectum-that’s right- a major pain in my ass- the neighbors can probably hear me screaming. I don’t need to get into great detail, but I did get a thorough probing by a nice colorectal surgeon yesterday. There really isn’t an easy fix either. I take lots of hot baths, and if it’s still bad in a month, there is a potential botox solution that is not advisable during chemo. My friends, please take a moment to be thankful for your ass holes.

While I was getting probed yesterday, my daughter Luna was at the pediatrician getting diagnosed with Hand Foot and Mouth Disease. This is a virus that turns cute babies into rashy, feverish, drooling, fussy germ bombs. Adults usually carry the virus without any symptoms, but because of side effects 1, 2 and 4, I am supposed to be quarantined. I lasted a few hours without contact before I was wiping Luna’s nose and butt.

First I’m a mom, and then I am a mom with cancer.

Is this a public space for me to complain? Maybe this week. But this is real, and I’m not always a positive person. Today is my fifth day of being knocked down from round 3. Tomorrow I will be back up and at ’em.




Wigs are FUN


I’m bald.

I really love wigs and I’ve had a lot of fun in them, as you can see. The weird thing is I feel better just rocking the bald head so far. Sean shaved my head a few days ago. When it started to fall out I felt like a mangey raccoon. I think he was tired of cleaning out the drains. 


After my last treatment I was knocked out for about 5 days. My blood pressure was super low and I could hardly stand up without passing out. I think I had 5 bags of IV fluid but those didn’t really help. I was only comfortable in bed, in the bath, or in the shower. Sean even brought me a pillow in the shower- so sweet. It reminded me of a time when I was pregnant and had been at jazzfest all day and he brought me watermelon in the shower and I fell in love with him all over again. It’s the simple things.

Chemo #2 down- 6 more to go


Getting chemo isn’t that bad y’all. It’s hard knowing how it is going to me feel- but actually getting the “Love potion” in my port and in my body is quite fine.  The fatigue and naseua is hitting me faster than it did on round 1.

If you were a fly on the wall in our kitchen tonight it would’ve looked like a happy family, covered in spaghetti, having a dance party- Luna dropping her butt like it’s hot and Oti twisting his arms and roaring like a dinosaur. And we are that happy family that we look like. The strange thing is I’ve never been happier and more satisfied with my life. Does that make this the best time to battle cancer or the worst time? Before having kids I wasn’t terrified of my own death. Now it’s not an option. Not to say I haven’t had conversations about our will, with my husband about finding another love of his life, with my sister about her help raising the kids. Nobody wants to go there, and I get that, but it is certainly a wake up call.

My attitude might change as the various systems in my body get wiped out. I’m sure I will be a major party pooper when I’m bald and boobless.

It’s been 2 months of exploration, diagnosis and treatment. Sure I’ve had a few sad moments, but I’m not sad, or angry, or terrified. I have spent most of my life being sad or angry, for the injustice in the world, for the suffering of so many, for the beauty, for the earth, sad when I feel ineffective, angry at missed opportunities to help others and on and on. I used to get furious at my mom for anything, especially if she gave me gifts- I ran away on Christmas day as a senior in high school when she gave me a laptop (it’s so unfair! some people don’t even have enough food to eat on christmas). My sister could give me a sideways glance, and I would flip out.

A family friend was dropping off matzo ball soup and was saying how tough I was as a kid. I would like to apologize to anyone that was on the other side of my wrath. I do feel like I was always gearing up for a big fight. I thought it would be a fight for humanity. Turns out I was gearing up for this fight for my life. Having stage 3 means I have to take this seriously because it’s large, it’s growing, it’s not messing around. I’m ready- my dukes are up, I’m fighting this from all angles. Some days I even fight this by taking a nap. I’m gonna nap the shit out of this cancer.

I’m fighting cancer- but I’m not fighting the universe about why this happened, I’m not fighting my doctors- i just do what they tell me, I’m not fighting my husband when he has both kids and puts one in front of the tv with cornbread for breakfast. I want to be radically present for the good times. I can’t spend all day as a mom or at my job- but when i’m up and present i want to be fully present- to the extent that my chemo brain will allow. I want to use my good hours doing things that bring me deep joy.

I’ve got a lot of tools and I’m using them all. This journal is a tool for me.There are so many people helping us and I am saying yes to all of it.

as a side note- it is crazy that there is a natural disaster and a great human need in baton rouge- i’m certified in disaster mental health and spent a year coordinating house gutting for ACORN after katrina. the non-cancer me would be fully activated to help with that fight. It’s hard to sit this one out- I really wish I was able to help.

ps- a few hairs just popped out of my head and landed on the keyboard. This new dose of love potion must be working!

pps- wigs y’all

My happy place


We spent a few days at my family’s country house in Kiln, Mississippi. What a treat. I’ve been feeling a little bit better! The terrible is toned down and I’m mostly just fatigued. I mean- there are other weird side effects going on too- I’m getting mouth sores, my digestive tract is whack, and my scalp is tingling so it could be any day that I lose the boy cut. The good days on chemo kind of remind me of the bad days of pregnancy; if you don’t take a nap when you are tired, you feel sick; if you don’t eat a snack when you are hungry, you feel sick; you are hungry but everything seems unappealing; you are tired, but it’s hard to sleep; emotional swings come out of nowhere; you don’t know if you are going to laugh or throw up. Basically your body as you know it has been hijacked- only instead of growing a beautiful baby, you are killing a cancer baby.


We had a nice “normal” weekend in the country with very little chatter about treatments and a healthy amount of bug bites. So far- the kids have been handling this like champs. This weekend they started playing with each other for the first time and laughing their little heads off. They were like “mom, we are fine, you do watcha gotta do.”


This is what my schedule looks like this week. Keeping this body relatively healthy is a full time gig.

Monday-  Oti’s first day of school. I have blood work, yoga, massage

Tuesday- appointment with oncologist, appointment with nutritionist, physical therapy/ pilates

Wednesday- heading into the shop (Tibetan House), visiting with my 96.5 year old grandmother GiGi

Thursday- chemo (5-6 hours), NAP

Friday – physical therapy/pilates, Neulasta shot, maybe some Jin Shin Jyutsu, preparing for 2-3 days of hibernation





Chemo time

After a scheduling mix-up on Wednesday, I was practically begging to start Chemo on Thursday. I hated the anticipation and wanted to get on with it. Once I was all checked in on Thursday, it took 3 hours of blood work and premeds before I was finally given the “Love Potion”.


And I was feeling just fine. Trying to think good thoughts and visualize this medicine shrinking my cancer. We had a family pillow fight that night. I took all of my meds like a good little sick girl.

IMG_2086  IMG_2095

On Friday I was up and about- had a pilates and physical therapy session. Ran some errands, went to the grocery, popped in for my neulasta shot. I was feeling like I had this under control.

On Saturday I was at my nephews 3rd birthday party when it started to hit me. By 2pm I was in bed and pretty much didn’t get out for 24 hours. It’s hard to describe what it feels like. It mostly feels like I was hit by a bus; my skin and flesh feel bruised and sore. My intestinal track is shutting down. My face and neck are tingly. Sleeping is the only thing that feels ok. I’m not interested in food and have to choke down water.

The hardest part is being trapped in bed and hearing my babies cry, and I can’t get up. In my calculations of what Sean would have to do for the kids, I forgot that he will also need to help me. It’s going to be a long road. I broke down in tears this morning about how I can’t feel like this for 4 months. And then I felt a little bit better. And then I felt a little bit worse.

With a little help from my friends


I have been overwhelmed with love and support for a few weeks but today put me over the top. I wish there was a way to bottle this up so I could share it with other people that have to face this challenge alone. My Facebook blew up today, my phone hasn’t stopped buzzing and dinging and ringing, there are packages on my front door, cards, hugs, snowballs, surprise buddha statues and a party. Happy Birthday to ME!!




I’m working backwards here but today we went to Chemo School. Chemo School is where you sit for a few hours and listen to all of the side effects from chemo. And the side effects from the many medicines they give you to help with the side effects of chemo. I was reminded of the importance of washing your hands (I’m terrible at that), staying hydrated (I’m terrible at that), eating healthy (I’m moderately terrible at that) and avoiding contaminated food (kind of terrible at that). My plan was to go to the whole foods salad bar a lot, but it turns out salad bars are a chemo no-no. Another thing we learned of interest is that when I’m on chemo, my body fluids will be toxic. And my pee will be bright orangy-red. Toxic pee can be my super hero defense mechanism if anyone tries to mess with me.



I chopped off my hair on Sunday. As usual, we made a party out of it. Otis made the cut and Charlotte fixed me up right. (She has been cutting my hair since I was 5). Once the idea crept into my mind to do it-I had to get it done as soon as possible. It was easier than waiting for it to fall out. I’m sure it will be a shock when it’s ALL gone but I don’t feel as attached to the new do.

This is the calm before the storm. The anticipation of what’s to come might be worse than going through it. Or chemo might knock the shit out of me; I don’t know. It’s easy for me to stay positive when I feel fine- who knows what the rest of this week will bring. I was supposed to start tomorrow but there was a scheduling issue, and it might be Thursday. I was bummed out- and kept telling the nurse I was ready to start- but I don’t want to spend any more of my feeling fine time being bummed out.

A few years ago my cousin Amy and I were heading to India on an ayurvedic pancha karma  healing adventure for a few months. When we told our grandmother she shot it straight and said “well, you won’t be comfortable.”