Friday, February 27, 2009

Stuff on My Mind

Well it has been quite a few days since my last post. I've been busy and tired, alternately. I went to order my new glasses yesterday, and they won't be in until Tuesday, but they are pretty. And expensive. My vision insurance covers a new pair of glasses every 2 years, and I just got the sunglasses in August so I had to pay out of pocket. Arg. At least I had some money saved up.

I just remembered that I have a spare set that is maybe 2 or 3 prescriptions behind, but will do in a pinch (like when I take the dog out at the crack of dawn and return to bed).

There's some crazy family stuff going on lately. The big C has reared its ugly head again with M's mom, who has to have a surgery and biopsy next week, and Miguel (my mom's M) is getting second opinions about his chemotherapy course. His doctors want him to stop chemo treatments to avoid the onset of leukemia (a side effect of extended chemotherapy), but stopping could allow the tumor to grow larger. And some close friends of M's family just lost their uncle to pancreatic cancer, which is the same form of cancer my grandmother died of (and the cancer that Patrick Swayze and that Last Lecture professor, Randy Pausch had). Unfortunately for many, the first sign of pancreatic cancer shows itself when it has already spread to other organs. A diagnosis comes with not much time left (my grandmother had about two months from diagnosis until the end).

There are just too many people in my life that have been affected by cancer. And the waiting. The waiting everyone has to do. Wait for the next available appointment with the oncologist (1 -2 weeks), wait for the lab tests or MRI results to come in (another 2 weeks), wait for the doctor to be available to explain the course of action, wait to see if the chemo is doing its job, it is endless. I know it is hard on the patient, but it is also hard on the primary care giver as well, who shuttles off to doctor's appointments, creates special meals, and in general makes life somewhat bearable during treatment. It just seems so unfair.

The American Cancer Society has an amazing website where you can find out information and connect with other people who are going through the same stuff, for any of you that are interested. Also, if you'd like to donate in memory, in honor, or in general, you can do it through their site here. On that same site, you can also find cancer awareness events in your area. I did the Relay for Life one year and it was a great way to honor my grandmother. To advocate, participate, or volunteer for ACS's projects, you can also click here.

I watched Obama's state of the nation address the other day. He mentioned the importance of supporting cancer research and health care reform. I watched the whole thing from beginning to end and I realized that I haven't watched one of those in 8 years! Every time GW would get on the television and start talking, I would get angry and his voice would just make my blood boil. I waited for the transcript the next day if I even wanted to read it at all. What a difference, right? Obama is such a good speaker and was even personable and it seemed that he actually believed what he was saying, as opposed to reading a speech he is supposed to believe in. I hope some things start changing, because it seemed like, given the standing Os every 15 seconds, that there are people in that room who are on board with this whole "science is real," "rich folks don't need tax cuts," "decent affordable medical care is a right" thing.

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