Quotes of the Day

Glenna: “I’m too much giggles to my toes…I can feel it in my bones, Mom!”

Glenna: “Mom? When my nose is on backwards I sneeze backwards!”

Cecelia: “Mom? Dxxxxx is Buck…okay?”

Cecelia: “Mom? Miss Rxxxx cut Cece’s hair scissors tomorrow. ..Cece NO cut hair,  Mom!”

Posted in Ann Strongheart, autism, family, fun, growing up, Happiness Daily, kids?! | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Negative!!!! Yeah!!!!

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Trying not to cry….Thank goodness!!

We now return to our regular yearly mammograms! !!

Posted in Ann Strongheart, autism, breast health, family, health | 1 Comment

I will survive

Well I survived my biopsy.

I woke up yesterday morning scared, having a biopsy was the LAST thing I wanted to do. I was off from work for the day. My supervisor picked Glenna up and took her to Head Start. I got Cecelia on the school bus then…what?

Biopsy isn’t until 2 pm. So I goofed online, took a shower, did some housework and then my sis took me to lunch. After lunch we headed to the hospital,  I got checked in and we waited.

Then I was called back.  The tech went over the procedure with me. She checked to ensure the spot was still there via ultrasound again  and then went to get the doctor.

I waited…and waited. Really it was only a few minutes but my anxiety was building. The doctor came in,  shook my hand and asked if I had any questions.  I asked how deep was the “abnormality”? He said it was half between my skin and chest muscle. 

We talked about the metal clip he wanted to place inside my breast afterwards to mark the spot. I chose not to get it because I’m allergic to metals and didn’t want to risk it.

He washed up. Used the ultrasound to find where he would make the incision and insert the core biopsy needle. He marked where he was going to cut with a sharpie.  Then he cleaned my breast,  put a sterile drape over me. He told me that now he was going to do the local anesthetic.

This is the part I feared most.  I’ve had local anesthetic before when I had toenails removed and of course at the dentist and it flippin’ hurts. It was always the worst part by far.

He says that he takes this part very seriously.  I didn’t even feel the needle go in. A little warm but no huge burning sensation.  Wait! That’s it? Okay that was easy.

He keeps talking as they put a sterile covering on the ultrasound probe. Now it’s time for the deeper lidocaine injections.  He uses the ultrasound to guide him around the mass. Heck didn’t feel that either.  Just some wierd pressure.

Now it’s time to take the samples.  He’s using a vacuum assisted core biopsy thing. The sound it makes sucks. … literally it’s sucking breast tissue into it and then cutting it off and sucking it up.

Ugh the sound!  Blehhhhh. The tech had said he would do this 3 to 9 times.  And so I count….
1…. (imagine disgusting sucking noise here) click one down ….wonder how many more he’ll do…eyes closed not gonna watch. …breathe!!!)

2…. ( slurp)

3…. (slurp…..could that be it?)

4…. (slurp…ugh I wouldn’t wish this on anyone….should’ve worn Cecelia’s noise canceling earmuffs!)

5… ( breathe….don’t think about what’s actually happening)

6… ( don’t know how much more of this I can listen to. Breathe…start shaking a foot….eyes closed….I REFUSE to look at the ultrasound screen during this whole process!)

And he’s done! Oooh thank you! ! I don’t know how much more of that awful vacuum sound I could’ve taken!!!

NOW he shows me the ginormous 10 gauge needle that was just in my boob. Thank goodness he didn’t show me that BEFORE!!! That thing is monstrous!!!!!

Then it’s off to have 2 more mammogram films. Heck take as many as you want! My boob is numb…I can’t feel it being flattened into a pancake!

Back to the ultrasound room. The tech cleans the incision,  then puts three steristrips over it and a bandaid. We go over after care. She hands me some gauze and tells me to put it in my bra in case it oozes.

I get dressed and the doctor comes back and says his goodbyes checking once more to see if I have questions.

All done. I meet my sister in the waiting room and off we go. Grab a coffee on the way home. My hands are starting to shake as the lidocaine wears off but so far no pain.

My sis hangs out until her daughter is ready to be picked up, my girls have come home by then. Cecelia cleans her room with her staff supervising then they go get us all Subway for dinner.

We have a picnic in the living room while watching Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. Then the girls head to bed. I’m starting to hurt some. I took ibuprofen with dinner and am sipping a glass of wine.

Reminding myself that I have to rest for 24 hours. I don’t do resting well. Watch some TV….ooh I can’t get comfortable.  Lay on one side…switch…ugh… it’s starting to hurt now.

It’s like he took a piece of my boob….oh wait…HE DID!!!!

MILD DISCOMFORT they said….bullshit! It’s really flippin’ hurting now! Vent on Facebook.  My sister sees my vent and calls. I go into the kitchen to see if I have Tylenol. ..we don’t take it so I don’t know if I have any. I find some but it’s expired. I know it’s still okay to use but then it occurs to me that I might have some vicodin left a dental appointment last year.

YES!! I have vicodin!  I take half of one and it’s all good again.  Sigh…. off to bed.

This morning we’re up. I just put Cecelia on the bus. Glenna is excited because she gets to stay home with mom today. It’s a day of rest and Netflix. I’ll try to make myself stay on the couch and rest. ..we’ll see how that goes. I’m horrible at “resting”. I am pretty sore today though so maybe it won’t be too hard.

I leave you with today’s theme song….

I WILL SURVIVE!!!

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Breathe….just breathe

Breathe!!!! Just Breathe….my current theme song. Everything seems so surreal right now. ….waiting…..

I’m so pissed off at Segundo right now. How dare he die…he should be here to help me through this. Sigh…. still waiting….

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Over 40…physical…mammograms…ultrasound…biopsy

We grow old. We…women…have to start having more “tests” as we age.

Throughout the years:  We do our breast exams, we get paps, we watch for moles….blah blah blah.  We reach 40 and now we need mammograms.  You groan when you get the news.  I even considered not getting a mammogram but decided better safe than sorry.  So I was scheduled for one.  I went in…remember now no deodorant or powder on your upper body (but wait! I have to go to work afterwards!! Grrrr okay wear a T-shirt and bring deodorant and a fresh shirt.

I get there and do the necessary paperwork. And wait….not a long wait, so that wasn’t too bad.  I’m called back and the tech explains what’s going to happen.  She gives me a nice warm exam gown…I change into it and then head into the mammogram room.  There’s the ominous giant machine. It’s cold, metalic, and looks more like a giant press of some sorts rather than a machine that is going to squish my “girls” and take a film.

So she gets me positioned and squished and turned and wiggled. After several films I’m done.  She shows them to me and asks for my email address as I can have the results emailed to me either that evening or the following morning.  Well now I LIKE that idea!!  No waiting for mail or a call from my doctor just an email.  The tech tells me that since this is my first mammogram that I might need a more extensive one to establish a baseline to compare future ones to.  So to not be surprised if get called back in for another more extensive one. It’s Friday and I have to work late because we’re having a dinner for our head start students that are moving on to kindergarten.

I get done with the dinner and check my email…nothing. It’d been a long day so to bed early because I was exhausted. I wake up the next morning and there’s my results in email:

Dear Ms. Strongheart:

Your recent mammogram examination on 4/17/2015 showed a finding that requires additional imaging studies for a complete evaluation. Most such findings are benign (not cancer). Please call 907-XXX-XXXX to schedule an appointment for these tests if you have not already done so.

Okay…well she said this might happen…no worries. Monday I get a call from the hospital to schedule my 2nd mammogram.  Well we’re wrapping up for the end of the school year at Head Start and I had 22 home visits to complete in addition to the regular classroom tasks.  So I set my 2nd mammogram for May 5th.

I go to work as usual that day.  Have class with preschoolers in the morning as usual and then after they left for the day I head to the hospital for mammo #2. I head to radiology, never been here before because my first one was at their clinic in Kenai.  So here I am at the hospital in Soldotna….waiting….and waiting….have they forgotten me?  Good thing I have my smart phone and can sit and whine on facebook and play some games whilst I wait.

I finally get called back. She shows me to the changing room and explains that they want to do a more extensive set of films….but just on my left breast.  Well now that sets some alarm bells off.  Only the left one…huh?  Okay…suck it up buttercup!  We can do this!  I change into a cozy warm exam gown and wait for her to come get me.  We go back and she shows me the two films from my left breast that I had done before.  She points out why they want to get a better look.  Well huh…there’s some gray streaks and a most definite white spot about the size of a very large pea.

I step up to the machine and she takes more films using more precise imagery. She takes me back to the changing room and says the Doctor will be in to see me to let me know if I need an ultrasound.  And I wait.  I post on FB about it being only my left breast and that I’m a bit anxious.  The tech comes in and tells me that I’ll need an ultrasound and that the ultrasound tech will be here to get me shortly.

And I wait…again.  And again I vent on FB not at all happy about having to have an ultrasound. The ultrasound tech comes and gets me.  She takes me to a darkened room and I lie down on the bed.  She puts some ultrasound gel on my breast and starts the ultrasound.  I can see in a screen above me and to the left what she’s seeing.

Hmmm wonder what that spot is? She stays focused on it, she measures it.  She attacks it from different angles measuring and recording.  Then she tells me I can get cleaned up and dressed again.  She will go and show the doctor the results and he will come talk to me about them.

So I get dressed and pace.  Waiting…thankfully it was only a couple minutes and the doctor arrives.  He introduces himself and shakes my hand.  What will he say, I wonder?

He tells me that they have found something (really? I think I might’ve noticed!) He tells me that there’s a solid mass in my breast and he thinks we should do a biopsy to determine what it is.  He assures me that in cases like mine that only about 3% turn out to be cancerous.  He tells me what will happen, I ask if my native clinic will cover the costs.  He assures me that they will but that sometimes they prefer to send women to Anchorage for biopsies but has done a few for them here in Soldotna.

I tell him that I hope I can get it done here becuase I’m a single mom of two small girls…one who is autistic…so picking up an going to Anchorage just doesn’t work well for me. He says he’ll be sure to add that to his report and tells me to talk to my doctor about it. He asks if I have any questions….at the moment NO….I’m in shock.  All I can think is…breathe!! Don’t break down and start balling.  Nod, smile, breathe…breathe….don’t panic…it’s just a biopsy!  It’s just some needle sticks to numb it, a small incision and a ginormous needle shoved into my left boob to take a sample. (really I’m not panicking….really!!  breathe!!)

Well I do have the sanity enough to ask him how long it will take to get the results… 3 to 5 business days.  I try to schedule it so that I can do it on my two weeks off before I start working summer camp….no dice.  He’s not available.  And he wants to do it sooner rather than later …breathe…okay…let’s just do it next week!

So he says his goodbyes and the ultrasound tech takes me into the hallway to wait while she talks to scheduling.  We’ve decided it best to get me penciled into the schedule so if the clinic does approve for me to have it done here then I’m all set.

Again I’m waiting…not in a private room but in the hallway…but thankfully no one’s around.  The tears threaten…some escape…breathe…I can do this!  Breathe…breathe damnit! I will not break down now…here…in a hallway.  Breathe!!  Onto my phone again…post on FB that I’m scared…I need a biopsy.  BREATHE!!!!  No crying!!  I’ve been through worse…I can do this!!

The ultrasound tech comes back and I’ve been penciled in for May 13.  She hands me a card and we say our goodbyes.  BREATHE!!! Hold it together.  I text work because there is no way I’m going to be able to work this afternoon…I’m emotionally drained.  I head home.

The girls aren’t home.  Glenna is at daycare and Cecelia is with her staff so I have an hour or two before they’ll be home.  Once at home I let it all go.  No longer can I contain the emotions.  I cry and I yell…I curl up in a ball and let it all out.  Breathe…deep breath… moment of weakness subsides.  I grab my phone and call the clinic.  I speak with my doctor’s case manager.  They’ve already received the report and the referral for the biopsy.  They approve for me to have it done at the hospital here…whew….one hurdle down!

I know someone who just went through this and I text her.  I ask her some questions.  I find out that she wasn’t allowed to lift anything for 48 hours after her biopsy.  Well that’s not going to help.  That means I cannot work for two days after.  The last two days of school. :-( But I cannot do it later the next week b/c the doctor isn’t available for the two weeks that I am off before we start summer camp.  So it is what it is.

I’ve lined up a substitute teacher for my classroom and am trying to get as much done as possible before Wednesday so my co-teacher isn’t stuck with tons to do.  Now I wait….and wait…and stew…and over think things….what if this….what if that….sigh…

Sometimes I really hate growing older. I don’t have time for this crap. I’m trying to NOT think about it but how can I NOT think about it.  Even after the biopsy is done I’ll have to wait some more as it takes 3-5 business days to get the results.  Plus they have to come from my regular doctor so who knows how much longer that will take….grrr…

and WAIT…..

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Parenting Fail

Parenting Fail….

Glenna lost a tooth Thursday night.  She put it in a ziploc and set it on the counter.  She wrote a note to the Tooth Fairy and even drew her a picture. Knowing the Tooth Fairy would visit….well the “Tooth Fairy” fell asleep on the couch last night and forgot all about Glenna’s tooth.

Glenna found it Friday morning :-/ as I was ushering her out the door with my coteacher’s Mom, who was watching her for the day.  So when we went to get Glenna after work I told Glenna that the “Tooth Fairy” texted me today and told me that she’d been VERY VERY busy last night and couldn’t get Glenna’s tooth but she’d be by tonight to pick it up.

Glenna was excited and wanted to write the Tooth Fairy another note asking what she does with the teeth she collects….sigh….

Update:
Turns out the tooth fairy didn’t have any small bills last night and had to leave a $20 with instructions to share with Cecelia.  :-/

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A dating adventure update. …

Another one bites the dust! 

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