Monday, April 30, 2012

04-30-2012 Rathfoot Follow-up

  We went for the follow-up with Dr Rathfoot today and it went great. He scoped me and saw some aggravation in the opposite side of the throat, but it is usual he said this time of year with all the pollen. The O2 seems to be making a difference and he saw progress it the throat from the last time and was pleased that we're finally healing up more. He said maybe a couple of stretches and injections while they're there would be in the picture for later. For now though the next three months I'm free unless something goes wrong and that's not going to happen. So from now until July it's clear sailing. He was excited and we were too. I thanked him and he took no credit that I should thank God. We found out we both have Great Pyrenees dogs. I didn't mention the TI or PI or whatever Denise calls it, why ruin the moment. Plus I think that would add another doctor, more tests, and maybe more meds I'd forget to take. I do thank God every night. I thank Him for the great doctors, nurses, family, and friends. Though adjustments have had to be made, I thank Him for the gardens and the ability to have them. I'm not afraid to die and not afraid to live either, ain't seen nothing that I can't do, when I depend on Him to help me through.  Hey that rhymes. Poet and don't know it, feet do though, their Longfellow(s).

  Denise went back to work and I celebrated with grabbing Megan and taking off the trash. Followed that with bush hogging the hill until I sheared the pin. I think I massaged the weeds for a while before I noticed that, lol. Installed the gate to go into the grapevine area where the tomato plants are. This wasn't a good day, it was a great day.  I bet I sleep good tonight.

  I gotta have some music to celebrate.


Wednesday, April 25, 2012


Day 3 and I think I'm adjusting pretty decent. I'm back to 2 finger typing again, just different fingers. I took mom to Knoxville for her check up and we stopped at Easy In to cash a check, discovered that keeping control on my finger on the keys isn't the only thing, writing is even harder. It was embarrassing but we had a good laugh. It took a while to write and even then it's hard to read, not that I wrote pretty to start with. Holding a fork took some creative ways, but I done it. I've been practicing writing too as well as typing.

  Denise thinks I may have had a light stroke, honestly I think that is a good possibility. I see Dr Rathfoot next week for a check-up and I really don't want to see a doctor for this. Surely it's done. No numbness in my forehead, just a regular headache, lips aren't numb anymore, and the right hand, arm, and leg slowly working a bit better and what they lack I've figured out ways around the lacking, and the swelling is going down. Just a mild headache in my right eye tonight, probably sinuses. I'll chill for the night like I did yesterday and tomorrow if it's dry enough I'll till the garden. Good chance it could be the discs in my neck got a bit whacked when I strained that day, they've just now started to pop.

  I met an interesting lady at the doctor's office, a drug rep I talked with while waiting. She had breast cancer and also went to UT for treatment. We were at Ft Sanders at the time, lol. She had a mastectomy and is fully in remission. Her husband is a principle at a local school and she was a teacher who decided to be a drug rep. They have a 5 year old daughter. I think how funny that out of that big waiting room she would set the row in front of me, everybody else was on the other side of the room. It seems that everywhere I go I run into people that either have, had, or were effected by someone close who has cancer. One would think that with 95% of then scientist working on ways to make war and 5% on everything else that we would demand it be the other way around.      

Monday, April 23, 2012


 No word still so perhaps no news is good news. No copy sent to Rama either so it may just not be read yet. 

   Done a 1st today, hopefully tomorrow it will straighten out itself. I dug mom's drain line and got a bit hot. I got and still have a massive headache in the right side but Excedrin Migraine seems to work to ease it. It hasn't done much for the dizziness or the swelling in the right hand, slurred speech has left but the control of the right arm and hand hasn't returned yet. Got strength in it but no coordination yet, so I've went from 2 finger typing to 1, lol. Denise thinks it might be a nerve pinched. Cool temps with high humidity plus awkward strain could have got the 2 discs in my neck upset, but usually I can pop them and be fine, never had swelling and leg pain with it that I remember. Maybe tomorrow will be better and it'll reset.       

Friday, April 20, 2012


No call from UT with the test results and the other doctors haven't received copies yet. I'll take this as no news is good news, either that or they haven't had time to review and read the results yet. I'll find out next week I think when I return to Dr. Rathfoot. I think it stays in the back of one's mind "what if ". Meanwhile I will continue to live each day like it is the last as one day it will be. Enjoy, relax, and find peace.

Oh, did I mention the Sign is back, right exactly where it was. How cool is that... Headed from Knoxville to here, right before the Sevierville exit in a field on the right, between 2 hills. 

Thursday, April 19, 2012

04-19-2012 Dr. Panella Follow-up

  We went to UT again today, done a chest X-Ray and then headed up to Dr Panella's office for a follow-up. There was a doctor that was training there, nice fellow, they asked if he could see me too. I have no problem with that. He came in and checked me out, looked up some stuff on the web before he started talking or checking me, but didn't look in the chart. He felt a lump in the side of my neck the tumor was on, except way back. After he left out Dr Panella came into the room and he showed him the lump area, Panella checked but wasn't too concerned. He had me open my mouth and with a light showed him the back of my throat and the deformity the Radiation had left. I guess that is normal for radiation and apparently visible. Now I've been told I have a fowl mouth but never a deformed one. :) The blood work and X-ray results weren't back, but he told me if anything was wrong they'd call me. He said he was calling me in Remission!!! That sounds great to me. He did say that the throat could be stretched and talked about that, but I'd rather Dr. Rathfoot make that call since that is what he does. I don't have to go back until October if the tests are clean. I looked in the Chemo Hut, but they've changed people and I didn't see any that was there when I went. Ruth was off too.

  We headed to Sams while we were in Knoxville and picked up a few things. We came home and I planted the Tomato Plants, tilled and leveled the area for peppers, squash, and watermelon. Denise planted 44 Pepper Plants and Megan planted 12 Squash (I thing). The signs aren't right again until late next week to plant again. If it don't rain we will get the rest out plus the Okra, Beans, and Corn. A friend of mine, Dale, already has his out. He grows a beautiful garden. He works his like we do. Keep the stuff we need and give away the rest. We worked until it was getting dark, plus American Idol was on, then Swamp People. It has been another good day. I could get use to that. Best of all, no engagements, appointments, of need to go here or there, so I get to get dirty.  

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Annie Getting Pinned

Annie got her Nursing Pin tonight at the Pinning Ceremony. Megan is working on a flick and I'll put that up as soon as she is done. Annie is our middle daughter. Congratulation Annie!!!

Helping Janet

  David gave a link to a little girls' site, Janet is her name. I had not heard of her before. Her website is at I looked at the link below and there is a young man too in need.

She is well collected inside on this video, as many cancer patients are, but inside, it's not this cool and calm always. The second one shows what is going on inside. Please pray for this girl and help her if you can. 

Friday, April 13, 2012


  I spent most of the day at some friend's house, hopefully I didn't overstay my welcome. I worked with Don at Pet Dairy for a little while and we both, years later, ended up at UPS where Don eventually became one of my bosses. In an email he says his wife Barbra has been diagnosed with cancer and they would like for me to visit. I love Don and Barb like family and they have taught many people, myself included, just what marriage and love is just by silently watching them. They probably don't read this blog and hopefully I hope they don't mind me mentioning them. Barb has throat, lung, and liver cancer and I ask that those who read this pray for them and why I think it is important to call their names.

  We teased Don when he was at UPS while quietly we admired the love they have between them. Even today they held each others hands while I was there on and off, which was nothing unusual for the pair. After 40 years of marriage. Barb would pack Don's lunch when he drove and even when he went into management, usually accompanied with a little note. We laughed and remembered crazy things we'd done while working together all those years, talked some serious stuff in between, told some jokes, and talked about the world things that seem nuts. For years I ran the route where their house is and would stop in the heat for a glass of cold water. The best though is when Don would be on vacation and I'd stop the Package Car and blow the horn. When Don would come out I'd point to the logo and tell him not to think about work, lol. They are in good spirits and are ready to fight the battle they face. These are good, honest people who have worked hard all their life and it doesn't seem fair and it isn't. Then again, life never is fair.

  So I ask those who read this please stop and take a moment to remember them in their prayers and thoughts. You would love these two as I do if you knew them.  

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

04-10-2012 Chest Pressure

  The year is flying by. Over the last week or two I've had some pressure in my chest but nothing major. Friday night we ate at Captain D's and I love crispy, so I ate the crispy Denise didn't want. It was either a bone or just a really hard edge and I didn't chew it properly, swallowed it and it felt like a razor going down. Oddly enough though it never stuck. I could feel my throat swell immediately. Maybe that added to the persistent chest infection that I can't seem to shake, and I had pressure again, only lots of it. It increased until the point I got a bit worried and reach for the Nitro. I have the spray kind instead of the pills, so I dosed myself under the tongue. The pain went away. Minutes later it came back and even harder. I thought about waking Denise but decided not, so I dosed myself again. Problem solved itself slowly. For added insurance I turned on the O2 machine and started doing the oxygen. It slowly went down.

  Saturday I stayed mostly in the chair and slept late, weak from the event and throat still swelled. Sunday the drain in the Denise's bathroom clogged, so we ended up heading to Lowes to get pipes and fittings and replaced the pipe. Matt, Misty, and the grandkids came over and we ate at mom's and gave them their Easter Baskets. I didn't get to enjoy them like I wanted, still weak. Josh & Brandon stayed the night though and Megan played with them and me and Josh watched some TV. We went to Denise's mom and dad's house, his 83rd birthday was yesterday. I like to visit with them, good, smart people.

  Monday we went to UT Speech & Hearing to get Megan's new Ear Molds for her Hearing Aides. I came back and crashed again. Today I slept late again but I finally got out and stirred, more spun my wheels than accomplishments. The air is cooler though and it eased my throat. Maybe tomorrow night I'll drop the Predisone back to 5mg, since Friday I've been doing 10mg as Rathfoot had suggested. I'm finally building some strength back and no pressure in my chest. I played with the new truck, working on stuff the other guy didn't or did wrong. Got it titled today too. I got a deal on it but for a reason, needs work, but it dumps. :) 

  This is the month rather than last month for a follow-up and X-Ray with Panella. I think he will tell me what I already know, drop the weight. It is in the back of my mind though what the outcome could be with the lungs. I remember the follows the tree speech. I'm not sure what route I'd take if that comes around.  I think that bears on the mind. I got a letter on a Seminar on T Cell Lymphoma, but I won't go. Right now it is raging and I have to turn that around. I haven't worked on it in a while. For a moment I considered going to see Zic and Greer at Vanderbilt again, but I think not. They are great doctors and the hospital is good but the next level of meds I still will not do even though the last few days the itching and burning almost make me give in, almost.

  I've had some weird dreams the last little while. This last one I looked from a distance at a Covered Bridge and told I could go in it. It was over a beautiful river with bright water, sparkling and as blue as they sky. Where I was standing was a fog behind and all around me. I went and played (strange) like a child in the bridge. Then I was told I could go and see on the other side of thew river. So I did. The most beautiful green pastures on rolling hills. No trees, just lush pastures. I walked into a village or small town where the streets were stone, but like a marble, with buildings made of stone. People walking around, sitting and playing checkers and some just looking around. Everybody was friendly and seemed to be happy. Nobody had any troubles and all looked to be healthy, all ages, all sizes. Nobody I actually recognized like the last dream, but everybody seemed to be familiar, and I to them. Clean and neat as a pin. Then Denise woke me up. I had unhooked myself and went into the couch in my sleep. I woke with freezing. Not cold but freezing worse than even I remember working in the Ice Cream Room at Pet Dairy where it was 30-40 below zero. The other dream a while back was like that and just the same as before I woke up so cold I hurt, yet happy and peaceful. Both times I wanted to stay, and both times had a profound impact on my outlook of life. It took covers and a blow dryer blowing under them plus about 15 minutes to stop freezing, yet inside the joy and peace they brought continues.