First Light 06.12.13

Another gorgeous shot! Your early waking on these mornings is definitely our gain!


First Light 06.12.13

We’ve hit the rainy (hurricane) season here on the coast. But today was a good day, so I spent some time at the beach this morning. More photos to come!

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Thanks to All

Thanks so much for all your comments and encouragement. I’ll get to each one when this little episode is over, but just wanted to let  you know how much I appreciate them. We’re in the motel room, having a bit of wine to unwind. Very tired. But very grateful to have your kind words.

I promise to follow the two main bits of advice:

  • Use the wheelchair. OK, swallowing my pride, but as my dad said, you check your pride at the door when you walk into a medical facility.
  • Look at as many RA pics as I can. In some cases this may mean listening to audio files since I’ll have my little buddy (mp3 player), Spook, with me all day, but probably no way to see photos. And to start things out, very belated Guy Day acknowledgement (I know I just used this one a couple of weeks ago – I like it!):
No caption needed! Source:

No caption needed! Source:

Again, thanks. Here’s hoping y’all are having a great weekend!  🙂

Update on the “C” Word

Tomorrow (Saturday), husband and I leave for Houston for my quarterly visit to M.D. Anderson Cancer Hospital.  Sunday afternoon will be the CT scan, early Monday morning a bone scan, then two doctor appointments following that.

I’m more nervous than usual this time. This was the trial period for this particular chemo, which had been very effective when I had it before.  But because of severe side effects, I’ve missed two of the six treatments. I’m not sure what effect that has on determining if the drugs are working. And if they are, I most certainly would have to have a much-reduced dosage to continue on this regimen. My main reaction is severe mucositis, and there is no way I can go through what I had to experience the last round – a liquid diet for at least a week and even that with a lot of discomfort. And of course, reduced dosage means reduced effectiveness.

So, that leaves us with either the newest drug on the market for colon cancer – the name of which I don’t remember – or moving into clinical trials where I become a guinea pig for an as yet unapproved chemotherapy. Based on earlier discussions, I also suspect that there may not be total agreement between my local oncologist and the MDA onc on the best route to take.

I worry that this increased pain is from the cancer.  I’ve tried all kinds of other explanations – some of which, I think, may have some validity: a joint problem from 40 years ago, knotted muscles, flat feet, stress. But I haven’t wanted to admit that maybe some, most, or all of it is due to cancer. The scans should show if and how much the cancer has spread, if that’s an explanation for the pain.

And, to add insult to injury, this couple of days requires lots of walking (the M.D. Anderson facility is like a small city), which I’m not sure I’m up for, given the continuous pain I’ve had lately in my right hip and lower back. Wheelchair, then? The idea is very repugnant to me.

So that’s why I’m in such a grousy mood right now. That, and being REALLY tired from travel lag. I even hate to subject an RA picture to this much negativity, so I’ll leave this post unadorned.

Hopefully, tomorrow will seem brighter with some sleep. Hopefully, it will be good news from the scans, and I’ll come back on Monday evening and say, “Never mind. It’s not bad at all.” Hopefully….

A Quick Beach Experience

So, this past week I’ve been “out of pocket,”  as my father would say. The trip to our daughter’s graduation in Georgia was wonderful (albeit tricky with a bit of pain and the ever-present insomnia slowing me down). Then on the way back, the husband INSISTED we stop here. Hoping to find some version of water and sand, we were over the moon to discover Pensacola Beach, Florida. We’d been to Destin (located a bit further down the peninsula) and knew that the further south you went, the better the beach/water, but we had no idea that we could find something this perfect without several additional hours of travel.  Much purring ensued….

Pensacola Beach, Florida - From the dunes

Pensacola Beach, Florida – From the dunes

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Pensacola Beach, Florida – Perfect sand, perfect water. What more could a girl want? [OK, loaded question there! 🙂 ]

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Pensacola Beach, Florida – It’s interesting to see the color variation of the water as it gets deeper. Lots of blues…

Is that gorgeous or what?! Then we went to eat here (that’s my younger son in the adirondack chair, but he shall remain anonymous 🙂 ). This is my kind of coastal place – not fancy, but with character. Of course it’s catering to tourists; I just don’t care.  We had a great time here!

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Flounder’s, Pensacola Beach, Florida – Great food, great atmosphere, cute unattached young guys!

Flounders, Pensacola Beach - The entry. That's the same boat on the left that you see from the outside

Flounder’s, Pensacola Beach – The entry. That’s the same boat on the left that you see from the outside.

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Flounder’s, Pensacola Beach, Florida – There are three different seating areas. We sat in these benches. Past the umbrellas is more beautiful white sand and turquoise water.

I just wanted a little slice of key lime pie.  I DID NOT eat the whole thing, but the three of us made a pretty big dent in it. Yum!

I just wanted a little slice of key lime pie. I DID NOT eat the whole thing, but the three of us made a pretty big dent in it. Embarrassing, verging on obscene, but it did taste good.