Sunday, August 29, 2021

August 29, 2021 Sunday--12:45pm


 I thought I would start this post today because of the big hour long cancer consultation with the oncologist tomorrow.  So glad Leah is coming with me.  :)

I figured that if I blog a day early I can take my time and not feel under a time crunch.  I also have another appointment with the surgeon, Dr. Regender, on Tuesday.  Leah's planning to be with me for that one, too.

Anyways, let's start out with something fun!  I saw this little plastic holder and knew I had to have one!

It came in different bright colors but I picked black in honor of you know who--LOL!  And what is it for?
It is a holder for ink sample vials so you can use them with a dip pen!
Holds the ink sample securely and you can lean your dip pen on the sleeping cat.  I know--silly!  But also, honestly, quite practical for someone such as I.  ;)

Okay--general stuff from last week:

First of all--thank you! thank you! thank you!  I have met the very best people through blogging and have the very best friends and family, too.  You all are wonderful, kind, supportive folks...just plain soul-lifting!  *love and hugs*

I didn't get any call from Dr. Regender about the team discussion of my case.  (Kind of glad because I don't really want to get into it with the doctors until I have to this coming week--lol!)

I forgot to mention I am also on a kind of DIY catherer effect--LOL!  Dr. Regender asked me to put myself on a pee schedule so that I am peeing before I really need to so I don't stretch out the bladder for a while yet.  Plus I am supposed to drink lots of I am spending a lot of time on the throne--LOL!  Annie is glad to see me acting normally in there.  She's back to waiting in the shower till I wash my hands and then she starts crying for me to pour a little glass of water in the shower for her to get a drink.  That is a new thing as of maybe a couple months ago.  (My own fault--I did it as a lark one time for her and she hasn't let me forget it.)

I got a robo call telling me that I am approved for a third vaccination shot (booster) as a vulnerable senior.  The website wasn't working, of course.  Didn't matter as I was just peeking and I wouldn't be due (8 months) until November.  Not sure I will be feeling up to tackling being sick for 6-8 weeks again.  I want to take it, of course, but we'll see what's going on with me by then.

Oh, and a show I mentioned a while back was actually Keeping Faith not Faith.  Was very good and had a decently wrapped up ending, too.

I have gotten more miraculous cancer cure comments on the blog (but I moderate them so they get deleted right off).  I even got an actual email for luxury human hair wigs!  Makes you wonder how much information Google sells to companies and what they sell.  Really creepy.

I worked all afternoon on cleaning up the planter boxes of all the dead flowers and leaves.  I hadn't done a good job since before the first surgery.  My lower back has been really sore for standing and bending since the surgeries so I had to do it "baby steps" style--one planter at a time.  I'd come in and rest my back for at least half an hour and then head out again.  After I got that done I had a longer break before I went out to do the watering with the hose.  Felt so good to have them looking pretty again.

I took out a huge load of trash on my cart to the dumpster and swung around to the garage to get another bag of meal worms.  Then I spent some glorious patio time listening to another hour of Greenlight audiobook by Matthew McConaughey--and getting a few rays.  Perfect weather after we got rain.  I called a girlfriend that night I've been out of touch with for a long time (she doesn't write back or use her email--but she reads my blog)--when the strong antibiotics I was on for the three days over the catheter removal kicked in!  Really bad diarrhea.  What timing, eh?!  I'm never on the phone anymore now that my mom died.  Let's just say Bonnie was willing to be hung up on and called back a few times--LOL!  We did get in a good catch-up chat.  (And the diarrhea was short lived and gone the next day--whew!)

Woke to actual gentle rain!!!  A perfect pajama day--cooler and dark.  Had the patio door open because there was just a light breeze and worked on letters.  I took a picture of the dead grass out along the sidewalk while the heavens were sweetly nurturing the grass and all the plants.
But later on in the day a full-fledged storm blew in with really wicked wind gusts!  Howled and beat against the building.  Was getting dark so I drew the blinds.  Next thing--in the middle of a rain sotrm--I hear a knocking on my patio door?!  Who would be knocking outside in a rainstorm when my blinds are closed?!  Dagan and Leah were out of town until Friday?  Knock-knock-knock-knock-knock...they were getting more impatient as I was trying to lower the footstool on my chair to go see.

So funny!  The wind had blown my new zero gravity chair almost flat and twisted it sideways till the back touched the patio glass--and the gusts were lifting the chair a bit and rattling it aginst the patio door--LOL!  No soaked human trying to get in--just a drenched me after I donned my robe and rushed out to move the chair far away from the glass--ROFL!  That wicked wind had me going there for a minute!  ;)

Woke up to gentle rain again.  I could see in the light of day that my coleus in the right hand planter had several branches snapped off.
 This time no storm came through, though.  When the rain ended I went out to survey the damage.  
Again, I had to do it in a few trips out there to gather and break up the branches (or is it fronds or something else?) to get them into a bag.
Might be hard to tell but the two planters on the right side of the patio lost more than half of their large light green and purple coleuses.
My "bushes" are gone on that side.  Oh well.  Now whatever wants to can rush in to fill in the gaps.
A full, jam-packed bag of coleus.  :(
The other two planters on the left hand side survived okay.
Also on Friday Katie came to clean in the afternoon.  Soooo nice to have a cleaning person again!  Even if it isn't regular yet because of everything going on with me and appointments and feeling like shit on a shingle.  She's such a nice woman.  I told her not to go near the stainless steel litter box because Annie has been having issues and there would be a new (her old style) litter box coming this weekend...and I apologized for the cat pee smell.  Luckily she has a few cats and we laughed about how wearing our masks made it a little less smelly--LOL!  Anyways, Katie will come back when I give her a call.  (I'm allowed to have her come every two weeks.).  Will depend on what the treatment plan is and all that.

I mentioned Annie has been having issues with pooping outside the box and barfing.  She also seemed to have a smellier and smellier cat box.  Had stopped burying anything (shortly after I got the new stainless steel litter box, I think, looking back).  Well, I wondered if my autistic cat hated the feel of metal on her feet?  And how was she getting pee outside of the box--even with the guard I also bought to fit on the special litter box?

Annie--always the shy cat--had not wanted to use the cat box around me (or anyone) ever.  But last week I was in the pantry doing something else and I was shocked that she jumped in the litter box and peed while I was right there.  We are talking years she has lived with me--so maybe she was trying to make a point?  Well, mystery solved.  Annie pees like a lion marking a tree.  No squatting for this girl.  She stands upright, lifts her tail high and sprays straight back...and she was hitting right where the guard meets the edge of the litter box.  No wonder there was some leakage on the backside of the box!  And then I found it had pooled up under the box on the tray I had undermeath the litter box...OMG!  No wonder it was getting stinkier!!  None on the floor at least--I rent!

Can't blame Annie for this, though.  Dagan and Leah had also use the big bins for their cats, so Annie had never had to worry about how she peed (not that she does now--LOL!)  Till I went and bought a fancy, never-have-to-buy-another-litter-box stainless steel litter box.  

So I got ahold of Leah.  Yes, she had already picked up another big storage tub but had not sawed a hole in the side yet.  (We had already suspected she needed to go back to what she was used to.)  Leah said she'd bring it over this weekend.  

And she did!  Yesterday!!
And I have to tell you (still makes me chuckle) that while I was scooping out the new/old litter box...Miss Too-Shy-To-Do-My-Business-When-You-Are-Looking-Or-Even-Might-Be-Able-To-Look-From-A-Distance Annie was sticking her nose inside the hole and trying to climb in--while I was scooping!!  And as soon as I was done she lion peed with me standing right there chuckling!  If that wasn't her way to tell me she was happy with the new storage bin I don't know what is--LOL!

Leah also b rought over some can holder racks she isn't using anymore for my pantry.  But we didn't get to putting them together yet.
Since I have to drink a lot more water (not normally much of a water drinker) Leah had me try some Zevia--and I love it!  Carbonated and in many flavors and no sugar.  (Love the root beer!)
The Zevia is what has helped me to drink lots of water lately and I need to keep doing that for a long time I would Zevia is going to be a part of my pantry for a while.  Can holders will help organize them.

I have one bigger basket yet to arrive from Amazon.  Been so much difficulty with the order that they offered cancellation...but I still wanted it.  May never come, who knows?  But I have some ways to organize lined up, anyways.
Leah also brought a small rake to rake the big spot where I had so many seed shells out there.  But it started raining again last night.  (Whoohoo!  We need this rain--I am thrilled--even if I lost most of a couple of my huge coleuses.) 
Today I went out and raked and sprinkled out some grass seed on that patch.  After all the rain we've been having the ugly patch looks much smaller.
Oh, and I did a couple loads of laundry yesterday and got almost everything put away, too.  So--a productive week for me, I guess.

Note: Feel free to skip the rest if you don't want to hear about cancer stuff.  :)

Leah and I talked about the meetings Monday and Tuesday.  Should be intersting.  Like I said, I doubt the doctors have read back in my chart to realize that I have had the bladder cancer, at least, for over a year and a half probably.  I was bleeding June of 2020 and you know I had to have had it for a while before I would end up with tons of blood in my urine.  Could even be around two years--which would coincide with all my crazy inflammation in my joints and leg swelling up.  That could have either been a reaction to cancer or left me vulnerable to getting way or the other.  And that is when I changed my diet so completely and drastically...which appears to have kept the cancer in check all this time.  I really believe I have been living with this for a good long time.

I don't want to start chemo or make any decisions until we do more scanning to see if I have cancer elsewhere.  That might change my opinion as to how I want to appraoach this.  If I have more, you know?

Otherwise, Dr. Regender said she got all the tumor in my bladder that she could visually see.  She showed me this stock drawing below of the types of bladder tumors and mine was the kind on the right--that grows into the muscle and can go through the muscle and spread to other organs. 
But if she got all she could see--she didn't go all the way through my bladder wall, obviously--maybe she got it all?  That would leave me with just the two smaller tumors in my humungous liver...different kind of cancer.  Again--why are they different if they expected the liver cancer to be spread from the bladder cancer?  How unusual is that to have two different kinds at once?  Nobody said the liver cancer was aggressive.  Is that kind slow growing?  I want to know the difference between them.  And before I make any decisions I want to know if I have any more somewhere else.  And if I do--what kind is that?  

I honestly believe this is normally an aggressive cancer I had in my bladder--but it wasn't behaving aggressively.  Only thing I changed was my diet back in June of 2019.  Going from living on carbs (could have been consuming thousands a day) to maybe 20-50--(some days higher, I wasn't counting)--has kept this aggressive cancer moving very slowly.  Not being fed much. 

So eating even less carbs and throwing some regular fasting in there--the cancer shouldn't be happy with that.  ;)   

Should be quite an interesting discussion tomorrow with a doctor I never met.  I want more information.  Dr. Regender mentioned wondering if the cancer had spread beyond my bladder (even if she did get all she could see) and she might want more imaging.  Fine.  That would be good.  They want to know if I have cancer elsewhere and want to do more imaging of the top half of my body.  Fine.  That would be good.  Need more information.  I really do want to know more before I agree to chemo.  I have all these other non-cancer issues I have lived with for a couple of decades.  Look how badly the vaccine effected me?  And that wasn't chemo poison--LOL! 

I keep "getting" to take things slowly and not panic--stay calm--no rush.  So I am trusting that.  Mainly because in my very bones I absolutely believe I have had the bladder cancer for like a year and a half or more already--and it didn't even spread to my liver (different kind).  So I have time to learn more and try things and do research, etc.  If I am wrong, I am wrong.  But I am trusting my guidance.

Dagan and Leah are totally behind me...whatever I decide.  They don't even like the idea of me taking chemo at all because they are afraid I won't survive it.  (I turly am not in the best physical condition and haven't been for a very long time--true.)  But I am not sure about chemo yet and haven't had any bad feelings about it.  But I never focused on it as a choice at first...or asked my guides.  I will trust my gut and trust GA/my guidance.  Whatever I decide along the way I have to truly believe in...for me.  My decisions to make.  Right now--just need more information.  ;)

Oh, so I did fast for 50 hours this past week.  Will be fasting off and on.  Not sure if I will get into a schedule with it or what--just getting used to it again.  I had done fasting in my younger days.  Went 10 days once, I remember.  This two day fast was no problem at all.  So that's good.

Lastly, guess what else I did this week?  I signed up for Wanderlust 2022!!  Early sign up--about half the price!  I know--sounds crazy as I have not been feeling up to doing the classes from 2021--LOL!  But I do so look forward to them arriving every week.  I print off the information and watch the videos and take notes--every week--even though they are all saved and mine forever on my computer--no, in the cloud, I think.  I signed up as an affirmation--to live long enough to get all these classes and to feel well enough to actually eventually DO them!  Yes--that could take me years--LOL! Thinking positive!

Well, it's gotten up to 80 degrees, so I might have to close up for a bit and put the air on for a while.  Even with a fan on me--well, the heat and I are not friends--lol!  I hope you have the best week.  Thanks so much everybody!  It means a lot for me to know of all the positives sent my way by all of you.

"Whatever may be the tensions and the stresses of a particular day, there is always lurking close at hand the trailing beauty of forgotten joy or unremembered peace."
Howard Thurman 


  1. A few spelling errors and blogger messed with my photo placements but you get what you pay for I guess--LOL! ;)

  2. Hi Rita - I love your lovely. long post. (BTW - I got you nice, newsy letter in the snail mail yesterday - love it!) I love your attitude and how you are handling everything. You are so pragmatic about everything, yet staying positive. I hope you will feel good enough to let your friends know about your consultation with the doctors tomorrow. I am so glad that you have Dagan and Leah in your corner - they are both such a blessing to you. You had quite a storm. We are supposed to get more rain here this week - which we need. It seems that we are cooling off a bit and slipping into fall, which doesn't make me sad at all. You remain in my thoughts and prayers.

  3. Well, thanks for the great daily roundup of activity in this post, Rita. I felt like I was there watching you as you changed Annie's litter box. What a hoot! And I am also glad to hear you are taking each day as it comes and that Leah will be with you in the doctor's office. You are doing all the right things, I think. And I am totally one hundred percent behind whatever way you decide to go with this. And thank you for sharing it all so openly and honestly. It helps me think how I would handle it if it happens to me. Sending you lots of light and love!!!

  4. Glad Annie is happy again with her litter box! Yes you need all the information the Doctors can give you. I am especially curious to know if he swelling in your toes and in your fingers is connected. I hope your visits go well with the Dr's and so glad Leah is going with you.
    Those Coleus will grow again they like being pinched back!

  5. That sounds like quite a storm you had last Thursday! I think that knocking would have scared me in the middle of a storm like that. I'm sorry it damaged your plants but I bet they will fill back in quickly. You have done so well with you planter boxes!

    I'm so glad to hear that Annie now has the kind of litter box she likes. It does sound like she was showing you how happy she was to get the new larger one. Cats are very particular about their boxes and they know what they like and don't like!

    How exciting that you signed up for Wanderlust 2022! That gives you something fun to look forward to and plan for.

    You are such a wonderful example for all of us in how to handle adversity. I truly believe your relaxed and positive attitude is going to make such a positive difference in how you do physically with all this. Don't forget, you have a LOT of people sending prayers and healing thoughts your way every day. That will make a difference for you too! Hugs!

  6. I also enjoyed you breaking the post into days of the week. Your days are so much more interesting than mine. Sorry to read about the bad weather and the harm it did to your flowers. But I grinned at the knocking.

    Amazing how Annie pees in her sandbox. Even my boys don;'t do that. I'm so amazed.

    Best of luck with the cancer doctor. I hope all goes well and you get some truthful and decisive answers, dear friend.

  7. Annie sure is providing you with her own kind of entertainment. :)

    Good to hear that you have been getting back your strength...albeit incrementally. Listening to your body and figuring out when you need rest and when you can try to do more things is always smart. Your attitude about making decisions on treatment seems imminently reasonable to me. Need to gather as much information as possible. I wonder if they have done a whole body PET scan on you yet. Glad Leah will be with you for all these consultations. Hard enough to take in everything being said when your mind might be spinning so very helpful to have someone else hearing what's being said. Wishing you all the best this week. Hope you are able to get all the info you need to make an informed decision on your treatment so that you are comfortable with whatever path you choose. Sending best thoughts your way.

  8. I do love your attitude, and the fact that you can discuss this disease so openly. I had quite a chuckle over kitty's reactions to the litter boxes. Good luck with your doctor visit. You have a super day, hugs, Edna B.

  9. A lot here, but let me just say that is a heckuva litter box. Whatever works, eh? Lacey has two, but she never uses one. Ever. I think it is simply her access route to the other one as they are adjacent. I trust this week brings better than badder news.

  10. Good to read your nice long post. I think you are on the right track gathering more info before agreeing to chemo. I remember those "miracle cures - it was latrile at the time our son was going through it and I forget what when I was - know it was something, I was just too focused on my agreed treatment plan to care.

    You sure have been getting a lot done. Too bad the coleus broke off but if there is enough time before frost it will grow back. If you like it well enough you can grow sprigs in water as house plants.

    Oh, Annie. Our son's new cat, the Rag Doll had a bout with diarrhea recently. He texted while taking a break from shampooing carpets and washing walls, bedding etc. He said he thought of all people had to go through washing stuff because of head lice. Not that he ever had it and they don't have any kids! Benz is better now though. They don't know what caused it. What made matters worse his parner D was away on a business trip and it is really her cat. Timing was such he had to take it to an ER vet. Gotta love those furry babies though.
    Keep on Keeking on.

  11. Your outlook on life cheers me, as does seeing your sheek black princess

  12. Glad you got some rain up there. We had some here and it was so refreshing. Those days are perfect pajama days, like you said.

    That's funny about Annie likes water in the bathtub. She keeps you on your toes!

    Your flower boxes are still looking beautiful - even though the storm did a number on the coleus.

    I on the wait list at the library for Greenlights. What did you think about the book?

    Will be interested in hearing what the doctors say about your cancer. It sounds like you are doing a lot to keep it at bay!

    Hope your week goes well!

  13. Another post filled with lots of information, per your usual, Rita. First, my belated thoughts are with you as you deal with the medical appointments this week. Good that you will have Leah for support. I know you will provide details in a future post.

    Annie certainly does have some unusual habits and definite preferences as far as a little box. In my years of cat ownership or should I have put that the other way, the storage container modification was never a thought, but it's a good one. Also a great use for one that the lid is no longer useable. A lidless one that here lid is used to transport clothes to the laundry.

    That rain storm certainly made a mess of the coleus plants which hopefully will survive transplanting; it seems a hardly species.

    Your thoughts about why the cancer may have been held at bay for so long are worth considering and hopefully the medical professionals will have some answers this week.

  14. Much love Rita! Received your letter and birthday card! Thank you so much for brightening my day.... love, deb

  15. Rita, I love the way you share your thoughts and what is going on in your life. I still have you in my prayers. After reading you signed up for Wanderlust 2022, I signed up too.

    Love your flower pictures and so glad you solved the kitty mystery.

    Hoping you get some good and useful news soon.

  16. I appreciate the way you are approaching this -- wanting to know ALL the info before starting something that might not be the best treatment in the overall. And if it is, terrific. You have been so productive. Way more productive than I've been with fewer obstacles! Keep at it and the virtual support keeps coming!

  17. Cool! I thought your ink holder was a candle holder lol I don't think Google sells info so much as companies have ways of finding anything published on the internet so they can target their comments/sales pitches. Your patio is such a haven :)

    I hope your dr appointments all go well and that you are satisfied with what they propose. It's so stressful, I know, but having a plan will help.

  18. Since you wrote this post on Sunday and I'm just now getting around to visiting, I hope you got answers to your questions. You had quite a storm--almost like living in Florida. I understand about Annie and the water in the shower. Do something a pet likes once and you have to do it forever. Annie and the litter box! I hope she's still happy. I love the black kitty for resting the pen. It's great that you have Katie to clean and you like her. Good for you for ordering the classes and planning on being around to do them. Better days are coming! Letter on the way.


  19. A very informative post. You are holding up very well, at least on your posts. It is true the better you keep your attitude when you are ill the better everything goes. I love your garden. Know that I have you in my prayers.

  20. We heard about the bad weather in the USA - your plants stood up well I think although that bag did look quite full go bits! Great that Annie is happy at last - she certainly let you know in a strange way!!! The baskets look really smart - I have a mixture of whites and beige - not elegant at all! Your positive attitude is to be admired Rita, I hope you got the information you wanted. I have signed up for Wanderlust 2022 too - seeing as. hubby is doing it with me. Unfortunately we have got way behind - there are some I really don't think we will do but as you stay they are there for when we want them! Hugs, Chrisx


I appreciate your visits and comments.
Have a really great day! :) :)