You are currently browsing the monthly archive for July 2007.

This is a post from toddler planet who has IBC.

To get the word out, Im posting it too.  Here are her words:

We hear a lot about breast cancer these days. One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetimes, and there are millions living with it in the U.S. today alone. But did you know that there is more than one type of breast cancer?

I didn’t. I thought that breast cancer was all the same. I figured that if I did my monthly breast self-exams, and found no lump, I’d be fine.

Oops. It turns out that you don’t have to have a lump to have breast cancer. Six weeks ago, I went to my OB/GYN because my breast felt funny. It was red, hot, inflamed, and the skin looked…funny. But there was no lump, so I wasn’t worried. I should have been. After a round of antibiotics didn’t clear up the inflammation, my doctor sent me to a breast specialist and did a skin punch biopsy. That test showed that I have inflammatory breast cancer, a very aggressive cancer that can be deadly.

Inflammatory breast cancer is often misdiagnosed as mastitis because many doctors have never seen it before and consider it rare. “Rare” or not, there are over 100,000 women in the U.S. with this cancer right now; only half will survive five years. Please call your OB/GYN if you experience several of the following symptoms in your breast, or any unusual changes: redness, rapid increase in size of one breast, persistent itching of breast or nipple, thickening of breast tissue, stabbing pain, soreness, swelling under the arm, dimpling or ridging (for example, when you take your bra off, the bra marks stay – for a while), flattening or retracting of the nipple, or a texture that looks or feels like an orange (called peau d’orange). Ask if your GYN is familiar with inflammatory breast cancer, and tell her that you’re concerned and want to come in to rule it out.

There is more than one kind of breast cancer. Inflammatory breast cancer is the most aggressive form of breast cancer out there, and early detection is critical. It’s not usually detected by mammogram. It does not usually present with a lump. It may be overlooked with all of the changes that our breasts undergo during the years when we’re pregnant and/or nursing our little ones. It’s important not to miss this one.

Inflammatory breast cancer is detected by women and their doctors who notice a change in one of their breasts. If you notice a change, call your doctor today. Tell her about it. Tell her that you have a friend with this disease, and it’s trying to kill her. Now you know what I wish I had known before six weeks ago.

You don’t have to have a lump to have breast cancer.


P.S. Feel free to steal this post too.  I’d be happy for anyone in the blogosphere to take it and put it on their site, no questions asked.  Dress it up, dress it down, let it run around the place barefoot. I don’t care.  But I want the word to get out.  I don’t want another young mom — or old man — or anyone in between — to have to stare at this thing on their chest and wonder, is it mastitis?  Is it a rash?  Am I overreacting?  This cancer moves FAST, and early detection and treatment is critical for survival.

Thank you.


Everybody’s got an acronym these days.  Is there one for working mothers?  I have to admit, I have not done my research on this, so if there IS, its obviously not widely used, or I would have used it by now.

But, around these parts, you see alot of SAHMs.  As a working mother I am at once jealous of you, and chagrinned at the thought.  Though, I know you not.

I hate that you have an acronym.  I am jealous that you get to stay at home with your kids all day.  You get the mid morning hug.  You get to play Totally Gross whenever you want to.  Maybe you bake cookies and bread.  Maybe you send your kid to his room because he is being a Big Snotface.  In my head I see you doing this.  And, I turn green with envy.

But, staying at home with Holden is something that I fantasized about when he was young.  Now that he is almost eight and in school full time, I just don’t think it would be as fun as it would have when he was two.  And, there is no way we could have afforded ourselves had I stayed home when Holden was little.  Now that we can, he wants to be elswhere.

I’m very lucky that I have a job at a place that is very Family First.  Holden has a field trip?  I am there.  He’s pukey sick, please come pick him up?  Done. 

That is a big reason why I love my job so much.  Not more than my kid, but A Whole Bunch.  And, I really don’t feel like Holden has missed out.  Me either.  He’s a social butterfly.  He gets irked if I pick him up “too early”.   MOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOM!  Why are you heeeeeere so early?
Makes me feel like a million bucks, I tell you!

So, I want an acronym.  I’ve given this some thought.  Working Outside the Home Mom; a WOHM, if you will (I like to pronounce it like womb.  Doesn’t that sound all warm and cozy?  Like we are the CRUX of humanity?!!  Yes!)
Or even just Outside the Home Mom; an OHM.  I know this is a unit of electrical resistance.  (I am one hot little Mama.)  But, I prefer to think of it like the Om you say at the end of Yoga Class. But with an H.


Last year at about this time, my mother was diagnosed with cancer.  A rare cancer.  Synovial Sarcoma.  She had been misdiagnosed for months prior to the actual Finding Out It Was Cancer.

She had the tumor removed, did the chemo, and then we all took turns driving her an hour away for radiation every day for 32 days.  We did not mind.  This will make her better.  We knew it.

My mother lost her hair.  She also lost her Self, her Health and her Sense of Humor. But she got well.

They told my mother that this was an agressive cancer, and they can’t tell where it came from.  There also isn’t that much research done on it, as it is so very rare.  Its a Wait and See game we play.  We’ve played; we are playing.

She did get well.  Back to normal for a while.  Back to shopping and Christmas and shopping.  Back to lunches and brunches.  Back to having hair.   Back to Laughing.  Also, doctor appointments every three weeks, then six, then six months.  Back to Health.

Then I remember shopping with her one day and she just couldn’t breath.  We had to sit down and rest.  And, I know you do not know my mother, but she is a shopping fool.  Rest?  Ha!  Resting’s for sissies.  But, there we were.  Sitting on a bench out side of The Children’s Place, talking about how she is so tired.  She is not even fifty!

Family doctor appointments happen.  They say it’s allergies and they tell her to get some Claritin.  She does.  For months.  And, then one day, she cannot breath and I tell my dad and sister She MUST go to emergency.  They kept her there for two weeks as we watched her health fade; as the tumor on her heart grew and cut off her entire left ventricle. 

There is nothing we can do, they say and they send us to The Big Hospital, where she had been the First Time.  And, for two weeks we sat there.  They don’t know what to do.

They did decide, after all, to operate.  To get this thing off of her heart.  And, they did.  And, immediately she was fine.  Ish.

Follow up appointments show three minute tumors in her lungs.  So, another round of chemo it is.  But, my mother says, if it makes her feel like before, she will quit it.  Because there are only going to be more tumors and more tumors.

She’s had three treatments and she’s done with it.  She quit it today.  No more, she says.  Quality of Life over Quantity of Life.

But, only now?  This is selfish, I know:  I feel like she’s quit me.

I was feeling pretty Sassy this morning as I left the house for work.

My outfit is classy, my hair is actually doing what I ask of it, I’m wearing my Coach Wedges*…all in all, I’m feeling pretty Put Together.

I dropped Holden off at Summer Care, and as I was leaving, waving at the parents, smiling at the Guy Who Is Waxing the Floor, the edge of my Wedge hit the edge of the step and I slipped.  My feet out from under me,  clutching onto the railing, I try to regain my footing. 

That was not God’s plan.  Still holding on for dear life to that railing, I proceeded to slip on the edge of all four steps.  In front of People.  Thankfully, my rear never touched the floor (I’m wearing white pants, Oh the horror that would have been), but my ankle came into contact with something hard-ish.

Oh, how Sassy I felt then.  That’ll teach me. 

*I feel it necessary to tell you that these Coach shoes? They are hand me downs from my sister in law.  She bought them, they didnt fit, she gave them to me.  There is not one part of me that could shell out that kind of cash for shoes.  Mentally, I would never be able to do that.  But I do love wearing them! 

Even if it means falling down a couple of flights of stairs every now and then.

Holden is an only child.  Only children are experiences unto themselves (and myselves!!).  I love having an only child, but I think that we, as parents of an only child, forget that he just can’t do everything with us!

This is the conversation I had with my son last night right before bedtime:

Holden: Pokemon, Pokemon, blah blah blah Jiggelypuff, Pokemon, Pudge Rodriguez, Pokemon.  And, then, when you get older?  You get to Long Kiss people.

Me: Wha???

Holden:  (hands cupped, mouth open, coming in for the kiss)  Like this.  Long Kissing.

Me: (hand in front of my mouth) Yeah, you cannot Long Kiss your mom, though, Buddy!

H: Why not?

Me:  Because we are family.  You can’t Long Kiss your relatives.  Where’d you see this Long Kissing anyway?

H: Smallville.

Me:  Great.  You still cannot Long Kiss your family.

H: You Long Kiss Daddy!

This went on for a while.  I told him that you will go to jail if you French Kiss your cousin, okay?  Because its illegal (in most states).  I told him you can’t even Long Kiss someone until you were at least 16 years old.  Or else, you know, you could go to jail.

Because see?  You think you will not have to have these conversations with your child until he is older.  MUCH older.  Like 42.  But, they are growing up faster these days.  Faster than I did, for sure.  I didn’t even get my first kiss until I was almost 16. 

They see more than we did because they are exposed to more media than we were.  Which, of course, makes me feel like a poor mother.  Obviously, I let my son watch Smallville with me, and now, I am regretting that decision. 

I ‘m not kidding myself.   He would see it somewhere else.  And, really, I am not opposed to Holden seeing people kiss.  BH and I kiss all the time.  I am just opposed to having to talk to my eight year old about kissing.  With tongues. 

The things these kids see on tv now a days.  Even watching the news!  You have to keep your index finger hovering above the mute button.  Holden once had a playmate over for the day, and this kid asked me if I was sad about Anna Nicole Smith.

There are a couple of things wrong with that, but the most disturbing one is that a SEVEN year old BOY knew WHO she was!

I know life would be easier without tv.  But, I love that thing.  I NEED that thing.  I want to Long Kiss that thing.

I guess its a good thing I’m at least 16 years old.

As I was putting on my makeup this morning, in preparation for the Longest Church Day in My History (more on that in a minute), I noticed, in the mirror, a descending spider.

Now, I have no real fear of these eight legged creatures; though for sure, I will smash one to pieces should It and I ever cross paths, I do not like to be surprised by them.  In my bathroom.  Threading down from the ceiling.  It’s disturbing.  Plus, not so easy to smash.

One has to carefully think out the spider’s Death Plan.  Do I swat him down, then stomp?  Do I put the tissue beneath him, then squash?  I chose to grab the silk from above, and take him, and his vein, to the toilet and flush.  And then I casually went about the business of Beautifying My Face.

Because I?  I was headed to Church.  Twice.

Usually, I only go once a Sunday, but today was the exception as my brother was being Commissioned to go on a Youth Gathering.  I would have just gone to one service; the Commission Service, but my best friend was bringing Baby II to meet Jesus this morning, and I needed to see this baby.  So, at nine a.m. full service at my home congregation, and then the split second after that service, my family and I headed over to The Other Church for the Commissioning.  Thank God, the latter Minister spoke quickly.

Having already heard a sermon, I felt that I could let my mind wander during the second service.  Oh, whatever!  Like you haven’t done it!

And, it just so happened that my mind wandered to The Simpson’s Movie.  Yeah.  You heard right.

Holden wants to see this movie Very Badly.  And, Big Hands wants to, as well.  But, should he take the Boy with him?  I believe this movie is rated PG-13.  Holden has definitely seen his share of PG-13 movies.  Spiderman movies being the ones that pop into my head right away.  Do I think that Simpson’s will be worse than Spiderman?  I don’t think so.  I think I don’t think so…

So, to Simpson’s, or to NOT Simpson’s?  That is the question which lay before me.

Unfortunately, God, in His own House, did not give me any direction.  Probably punishment for not paying attention.

Do you have any direction?

My name is jen.  I am 32.  I read a lot of blogs.  I am a Professional Commentor.  Im trying my hand at this for a while; we’ll see how it goes.

I am always awed by the amount of Things people have to Say, though I rarely can find the words on my own.  I like a script.

I have a degree in theatre.  Performing Arts.  I nevered mastered Ad Lib.  I always needed the words written down for me.  I always wanted to be on SNL, but knew I didnt have the chops.

So, I got a job in real estate.  I’ve been doing this for 10 years.  I love it.  I love my clients, I love my job.  I love my boss.  I love my co worker.

Along the way, I met this Boy, and we got pregnant.  And, now we have this Child.  He is Holden.  He just discovered that we named him after Catcher in the Rye.  He would like to read this book, but he is only seven (almost eight!! Gah!!).  The time for his to realize his namesake has not yet come.  I told him to stick with Captain Underpants.

We also have a dog.  She is Dharma.  She is a boxer and she is a year and a half.  She is our Other Child.  My husband loves her.  I think, more than me!  Some days, I am SURE, more than me!

My husband, who is Big Hands, is in a rock band (he also has a Real Job).  His mother thinks he’s trying to me seventeen again.  I think its cool.  When your husband is in a rock band, and he is on stage totally rocking out?  It is hot.  I would think BH is hot if he was just sitting, though.

My mother has Synovial_sarcoma.  And, let me tell you, that is one slippery bastard of a cancer.  She recently had a tumor removed from her heart and is undergoing ANOTHER round of chemo.  My mother is 49.

My best friend of more than twenty years just had her second child on Thursday.  She had to have her thyroid removed whilst pregnant because it was cancerous.  This is also a bitch.  But she and baby are great and coming home today.  In six weeks, shewill have Radioactive_iodine.  She will be okay, though she will not be able to nurse Baby II.  But she will be fine.

I have no bones about broadcasting my life for other voyeurs, like me, to see.  And, I love comments. 

Hopefully this will be a good experience and I will meet some neat people.  I like Neat People.  Hopefully, also?  I will be able to figure Word Press out.  Oh, that would be Dlishus!

Okay.  Here I am.  This is me.  Lets get to shakin’.