|April 24 Groceries|
Today, in the morning, I had an appointment with my oncologist. The nurse practitioner examined me and made some suggestions about additional things I could do for the inflammation and swelling, including applying a steroid cream (cortisone) and taking ibuprofen or aspirin. She also went over my most recent lab test results and I had my catheter port flushed. I have to go back in six weeks to have the port flushed again and I'll see the oncologist in three months' time.
My appointment was at 9:15 a.m. I left home at 8:15 a.m. and got there just on time. It was 11:30 a.m. when I left the clinic and I got home around 12:30 p.m. I had intended to go grocery shopping on my way back, but I decided to come home first, as I was getting hungry. I had milkrice and the rest of the beef curry for lunch. After lunch, I felt tired and took a nap!
After I woke up from my nap, a little after 4:30 p.m., I went grocery shopping to buy bread ($.99), bananas (@$.59/lb) and ataulfo mangoes (@$.25). I spent a total of $2.51.
|April 24 Receipt|
Amount spent to date = $22.24 + $21.87 + $4.55+ $23.48 + $7.40 + $2.51 = $82.05
Balance left in the April grocery budget = $83.07 - $82.05 = $1.02
After tea, I did a little gardening - I weeded half of a circular planting bed and transplanted the patty pan squash seedlings. Then, surrounded the seedlings with some wire mesh. I think, though, I will get some tomato cages for them and the zucchini seedlings, instead. I couldn't finish weeding and planting because it got too dark and I got a little tired towards the end.
I am actually wondering if I bit off more than I can chew with trying to plant a garden this summer. I am still not completely well and although I do enjoy gardening, all this effort to keep the cats out of the vegetable planting beds and making trellises for the grape vines is becoming a bit too much for me. I can't do as much as I used to or would like to. I am finding it very frustrating and a bit overwhelming.
I was in the garden from about 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Once I came in, I cleaned out the fridge, did the litter box, took the trash to trash cans and took the trash cans to the curb. Then, I made an egg salad and had egg salad sandwiches for dinner. After dinner, I put away the dishes I had done yesterday and washed today's dishes. Then, I started cleaning the bathroom. In between, I wrote to a friend, sent a message of sympathy to another friend whose husband passed away, and video chatted with daughter.
I realize that the medical appointment took up practically the whole morning. Then, when I came home, I was tired and needed a nap. Once I woke up, I was as productive as I could be, under the circumstances, and accomplished a lot. But still, I didn't do all what I had wanted to get done, such as the rest of the house cleaning, the paperwork, etc. And that is making me feel impatient and frustrated. Plus I am feeling a bit anxious and worried about the continued inflammation and wondering what it means and why my recovery seems to be prolonged.
Today, I am grateful for:
- the lab report showed my tumor markers were good
- the nurse practitioner made some suggestions that might help with the inflammation and swelling
- the port flushing went well
- a safe drive to the clinic and back
- time spent in the garden
Monday's To Do List:
- Doctor's appointment in the a.m. - DONE
- Grocery shop for bread, bananas, mangoes - DONE
- Family room - tidy, dust, vacuum
- Bedrooms - vacuum
- Clean out the fridge - DONE
- Empty waste baskets - DONE
- Take the trash cans to the curb - DONE
- Weed one planting bed - DID HALF
- Transplant the seedlings - DID SOME
- Clean the bathrooms - STARTED
- Paperwork (at least 15 minutes)
- Put away laundry
Tuesday's (and Beyond) To Do List:
- Water seedlings
- Go to the office
- Pharmacy to buy low dose aspirin
- Bring in trash cans
- Buy tomato cages
- Weed the rest of the planting bed
- Transplant zucchini seedlings
- Family room - tidy, dust, vacuum
- Bedrooms - vacuum
- Finish cleaning the bathrooms
- Paperwork (at least 15 minutes)
- Put away laundry
I already know that the list is too long to get done in one day. Then there's all the other stuff I want to do, including planting the succulents, putting together the trellis, and baking banana bread. This might be a week-long to do list!
How was your Monday?
I know that it's frustrating that you are still in recovery and you can't do what you used to. But for someone from the outside, like me, you seem to be very productive. As I was reading your accomplishments for the day, I was impressed because I thought you had gotten a lot done. Hope you have an even better day today.ReplyDelete
Thank you, Live and Learn. I need to be more patient and remember that I am blessed to be alive. Need to focus on that. Need to back pedal a little bit and take it easy. It's OK if I can't be Superwoman. Hope you are having a good day, too.Delete
I think medical places are a sacrifice to go to on top of the medical problems alone! I'm glad you can nap and I hope you heal better. You get a lot done at home! Gardening is difficult. I just bought yellow mangos recently (the first time). I love bananas and yours look so pretty and perfectly yellow. AndreaReplyDelete
Thank you, Andrea. I had one of the mangoes, last night, and it was very good. Have you tried the ones you bought? If so, did you like them? I'll have one of the bananas for breakfast, today. I like them just as they are getting ripe, not when they are very ripe.Delete
Yes I had one of those mangoes. I liked it better than the other mangoes I used to buy! Me too about bananas. I like to have one daily (if I have them) yet there is a fine line between being perfect (and nice and yellow) and the moment when they start to ripen too much for my taste. AndreaDelete
I'm sorry you're feeling anxious about your recovery, Bless. I don't have any wisdom to share as I'm an anxious person myself, beyond saying that I understand how you feel. But the tumor markers are good so that's good news!ReplyDelete
As for having bitten more than you thought with the gardening, perhaps just plant the seedlings, keep them watered and see what happens? It is frustrating when we want to do things but can't for one reason or another. Maybe you need to tweak your expectations a little? And, as you said, recognize that those medical appointments take half a day usually so perhaps don't plan on accomplishing much on those days that way you don't feel like you "failed"?
You did exceedingly well with your grocery shopping, I can't remember the last time I left the store with such a small bill and yet several items!
I hope you have a great Tuesday. I plan on baking banana bread as well. And making that soup I mentioned yesterday that I never made.
Thank you, Nathalie. Yes, I definitely need to work on my expectations! I couldn't do everything I wanted to do even when I was well; so why should I expect I'll be able to do it all when I am still in recovery? Makes no sense at all to me. But, you see, I tend to be irrational at times!Delete
Ha, ha, I managed to stick to my grocery list this time! I told myself I only came to buy the bread, bananas, and mangoes. I picked up one other item - a potted plant, but put it back, as I feared Dancer might try to eat it and it's poisonous to cats. I might go back and get it, later, if they still have it, and keep it at my desk in the office.
Hope you have a good day, Nathalie, and make that soup and the banana bread. Take care.
I'm sorry that the port site has continued to bother you. I know that a friend of mine experienced similar swelling and discomfort around her port site for a full year, or maybe even a little longer, after her initial treatment series was complete. It was frustrating for her, how long it seemed to take everything to completely heal. While I don't have this particular experience, I can imagine how frustrating it is to not be back to the level of functionality you expected. I am terrible at recognizing that getting rid of the problem is only the first step of healing. I think you do a very good job, though, of listening to your body and allowing it to guide your healing process. ((hugs))ReplyDelete
My Filipino friends at the library would anxiously await the arrival of the ataulfo mangoes! They are so sweet. I may have to check and see if they are available at the Asian market near my house.
Thank you, Laura. Actually, the port site is fine; it just needs regular flushing to make sure the opening is kept clear and no blot clots form. Even the lumpectomy surgery scar has healed. But there is an inflammation in the breast, itself, from the surgery and probably the radiation treatment. Internal healing is still going on and not as quickly as hoped. And the follow up mammogram is being put on hold until the swelling goes down as it would be too painful, otherwise. Those things hurt enough, as it is!Delete
I hope you are able to get some of the ataulfo mangoes as they are, indeed, very sweet.
Hope all is going well with you and you have a good day.
I am sorry that you feel impatient and frustrated. Until your oncologist indicates there is a reason for concern I'd carry on as you are. Actually you get an amazing amount done and often on very little sleep.ReplyDelete
I just came in from my walk which is still very hard for me. I find myself saying be thankful you can walk, although very slowly and to not dwell on how I used to tear around! Accepting the change in my physical condition but at the same time fighting on is what I strive for.
Don't short change yourself on what you do get done. You tried the garden if it is too much at this time just let it go. Doesn't matter in the big scheme of things. Let your gardener friend help you and yes get those tomato cages. Make life as easy as you can at this stage.
Hugs to you and best wishes for a excellent day.
Thank you, Sandy. I need to scale back, a little bit, on my expectations, and rejoice in what I can do and not fret about what I can't do. Sometimes, I tend to be my own worst enemy! I need to be more patient with myself, and make allowances, just as I would for someone else. Sometimes, I think, I am kinder to others than I am to myself.Delete
I'm glad you were able to go for your walk, Sandy. I hope you have a lovely rest of the day. Take care.
I also know of someone who has experienced prolonged problems like yours after radiation. It must be really hard to put up with when you want signs that all is now normal after the ordeal of your months of treatment. You certainly have a zest for life and it is great to read of your gardening activities, and your blog is a work of art in itself! Just keep on listening to your body and taking rest when you need it, and continue to find the joy in the little things. I'm sure your thankfulness is helping you to heal.ReplyDelete
Thank you, Bushlady. As I said in my response to an earlier comment, I need to focus on the fact that I am blessed to be alive and scale back a bit on my expectations of myself! I don't want to be seen as making my illness and recovery an excuse, though, if you see what I mean. Physically, I look fine and if I plead tiredness as a reason for not doing something, I feel people are skeptical, as it has been 18 months since the surgery, 8 months since the end of radiation treatments, etc. Surely I should be over it by now? Even the doctors are baffled, and that's not very reassuring to me. So, I keep pushing myself, but I guess I just need to step back and let nature take its time. I guess I am still on that mountain slope, aren't I?Delete
What can I do but concur with everyone else, Continue to listen to your body, rest and let recuperation take it's own course.ReplyDelete
Yes, thank you, Anne. Today, I made arrangements to take two days of vacation on Friday and Monday - not work from home, but time off. Along with the weekend, that will give me a nice, mini break. I will NOT make a big to do list but try to rest and take it easy.Delete
I think you're doing plenty just keeping on top of your house and going to work. I certainly understand how frustrating it is not being able to do everything you're used to doing. I would maybe re-think some things for the time being. Your number one priority is yourself, the rest will come.ReplyDelete
Hope the inflammation starts to improve. I think worrying about it is normal but I'm sure the nurse would have referred you if she Was concerned.
Take it easy and don't expect too much of yourself. There's always a lot on your list of things to do so even though it might not feel like it you're achieving A lot Xx
Thank you, Suzanne. I know I was whining, yesterday. But I just felt so frustrated. Today is a better day, though. As you say, if there was cause for concern, the nurse would have said something. In any case, I will be seeing the radiation oncologist again, in a couple of weeks, so they are keeping an eye on things. In the meantime, I am going to scale back on my expectations, a bit.Delete
I am sorry you are having some concern and anxiety. I can liken with that myself. I do know that if we can be patient, our bodies do strive to heal, waiting is the hard thing.ReplyDelete
I am taking Turmeric in capsule form which is supposed to be good for inflammation. You might ask your doctor if that would be good for you. I do think it is helping me.
Pam in TX.
Thank you, Pam. Yes, I need to be patient and let things happen in due course. I shall make a note of the turmeric capsules and bring it up when I next meet with the doctor (in two weeks' time). In the meantime, I shall make more yellow curries which use turmeric. It can't hurt!Delete
So sorry to hear you were having a rough day - that can be so draining and deplete all our emotional reserves, too. I may be out of line by saying this and just ignore me if I am, but do you think there's a possibility your persistent fatigue could be due, at least in part, to a mild case of post-recovery depression? I only bring it up because a friend of mine experienced that and her doctors were quick to diagnose it as such. They explained to her that after going thru the hectic pace of treatments, and you reach a point where your mind and body have a chance to settle back into a quieter pace and the routineness of life, that's when emotional fatigue can set in. Just wanted to share as you've mentioned fatigue more frequently than any other challenge lately. So very glad you're feeling much better today! Sending (((hugs))) and positive thoughts your way!ReplyDelete
Thanks, Carolyn. You bring up a very valid concern. Mental fatigue and emotional health is a very real concern for cancer patients and probably for anyone undergoing a similar life-altering medical condition. It is, in fact, something I have discussed with my doctor as the medication I am on can have an impact on emotional health, according to the list of possible side effects. I honestly don't think I am depressed, though.Delete
But, I am concerned and anxious that I am taking so long to heal, especially since the doctors don't seem to know why. It is almost 8 months since I finished my radiation treatments. I am supposed to have recovered by now. I am supposed to have had a follow up mammogram in February and that is being delayed till at least June due to the on-going inflammation and swelling. In June, it will be 2 years since the lump was first detected. It has been an intense 2 years.
Will continue to keep you in prayer, Bless. All the delays are so frustrating and yet you are dealing with them in a very courageous manner, even if you occasionally feel less so. You're certainly an inspiration!Delete
Thank you, Carolyn. :)Delete
Bless, I am sorry your having a rough day.. It is discouraging to not be able to do the things , we want to do.. You have been really sick and It is going to take awhile to get your strength to re-turn. Praying for you..ReplyDelete
Thanks, Judy. Yes, it is taking awhile to recover. Longer than I thought. Thank you for keeping me in your prayers.Delete
Bless, you are WAY too hard on yourself. Unfortunately, I have cared for several people with various types ans stages of cancers. You are a ROCK STAR! Kickin' butt and takin' names. Love to you. <3ReplyDelete
Thank you, Joy. I'm sorry you've had to care for others with cancer; I'm sure they appreciated you being there for them, though. I know I appreciated my daughter doing her very best to care for me and all the others who stepped in when she wasn't able to come down to do so. Oh, I like that phrase, "kickin' butt and takin' names"! I don't think I've heard it before! LOL.Delete
Your mangoes are much cheaper than what we pay over here - but then I guess ours have further to travel! What kind of mangoes are those? Ours are typically mottled dark green and red. I know all the Indian family swears by alphonso mangoes - but I don't know if I have ever tried one even in India. I think they were out of season when I was there. I do love mango shake made with cans of alphonso mango pulp and milk, ice cream and ice. I should ask Mum to make it soon!ReplyDelete
The mangoes I bought are ataulfo mangoes, also known as honey mangoes in the stores, here. It is from Mexico. I don't think I've seen alphonso mangoes here, but, I might check for the cans in the Indian stores, once I am ready to go shopping in person!Delete