I do not tolerate anesthesia well. It makes me very sick for a few days afterwards and I have trouble remembering things. I strongly asked for an anti nausea patch and medication beforehand, but was denied it by the anesthesiologist, with his assurances I didn’t need it. He apologized to me later after he saw me post-surgery miserably up chucking my jello and chicken broth breakfast. Who eats jello and chicken broth for breakfast anyway? Blech!

A couple of days after the surgery a nurse came in to straighten out some paperwork I had signed the day before. Alan stopped her with a “Whoa, what is this? What did you sign?” He usually works himself between me and all paperwork when I am not fit to decide or remember anything.

“I signed up for another study.” I told him. “But it’s not a big deal.” He looked like a cartoon character about to explode. I can understand his concern, after all, look where the last trial got me. What I had signed up for was a study that involved collecting blood morning and night for seven days for patients having kidney trouble after being on a heart and lung bypass machine. The reason the nurse had returned was because I had signed one sheet with my maiden name (been married 19 yrs!) and the other I dated 2003. Only a decade off. Alan is “Good Grief”ing like Charlie Brown and scowling at the study nurse while I’m saying things like “It’s only more blood” and “Maybe it can help somebody.” He has put up with my nonsense for 24 years. What a saint. I have to wonder though, should they really be approaching patients in such a condition? “You would’ve given them a kidney if they asked for it!” he said.

Speaking of saints, things are getting back to more normal around here. I was making a costume of a saint for our little pee wee yesterday. He wears it and presents his saint Thursday. Little man still does not know which St James he has. I was not raised Catholic and all these saints still boggle my mind. I bought brown fabric and made him a tunic figuring we’d add a net and fish if he was a fisherman. I looked at Alan Sunday and said “They were all fishermen in the time of Christ weren’t they?” Shoulder shrug -> back to football.

We are moving on to winter sports, the candy is almost gone, the kids are ready to make their Christmas lists (thank you greedy American corporations), And I am getting out more and more. I feel great. I’ve had no problems taking the one medication. My heart tumor has not grown since the surgery. It was 71x31x53 mm before surgery, now the portion remaining is 17x17x38mm and my heart function is “pretty good”. I was also told today that from everything my oncologist sees, I am definitely responding to the drug. Excellent news all around! Somebody asked me today, how do I keep going? I try to appreciate every day as a gift and I pray a lot. And mostly, I am blessed.

Leaves are falling, trees are ablaze, and the morning chill encourages little creatures to make rash moves to get ready for winter. Maybe Pepper can finally get a squirrel. It’s hard to believe I’m almost two months past my surgery. Two months of living.

Peace to you all,