Thursday, January 28, 2010


I try to think about "other" things as much as I can. But "the other C
word" has seeped through everything. (I tried to blog something non-
carcinomic here and I am failing miserably).

I may actually enjoy Halloween this year. (the theory being that I'll
be done w most of my treatment and on to Tamoxifen).

Mr C and the kids got me some cheap roses from the supermarket and
they have been fabulous for a week now. In about 2 and a half weeks if
I were to get roses they would die in 2 days. I hate valentines day!

I have a recruiter trying to put me in a job I'm qualified for but
don't really want right now given all the unpredictability. Besides, I
like the droids. I miss them.

My choir friends know I'm sick now. So with a whole church choir
praying for me I should be all set.

I was going to help with yearbook this year but Ummmmmm. No. No extra
work for Diva Carly.

I have been watching So. Much. Tv. I lean toward cooking and home
buying / remodeling. Dear Genevive, please come fix up Mia Porcha so I
have a nice retreat to rest in. Thnks.

Olympics. The Olympics have nothing to do w me being sick. But I will
throw a fuzzy sock at the tv the first time they do a human interest
story about someone who was sick.


OK so where are we? There are no chicks in the apple Marketing team, I get it, snicker snicker, iPad, comes in light, regular and maxi. ( :::eyeroll::: I can't even take credit for the joke. )

But actually I think I can see myself using it at home, on Mia Porcha, to follow twitter feeds and blogs and update facebook and maybe read a e-book or two. To me the appeal is holding it sitting on a couch or chaise and not having to sit at this desk to 'surf'. I don't see myself carrying it around in a super-sized purse. I hate to carry a big purse and my iphone does my calendaring, thank you. So to me it's a home gadget. I was thinking about getting a new laptop, maybe I'll get this someday instead.

But it looks like a fun toy. In the near future I won't be in any financial position to purchase said toy, of course (the bills are starting to trickle in already) but it would be nice.


My inlaws sent me flowers. They are so sweet!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Everything changes

Yesterday rather sucked. Not only do I need chemotherapy, which I had
kind of expected but HOPED to somehow dodge, I may also need more

Little things have tripped me up, like margins needing more removal
and one stupid lymph node having 0.3 cm of cancer cells. They dont
know these things until the pathologist has completely examined the
tissue removed. Arrrgh!

So it was very discouraging but the chemotherapy that is planned right
now will be only four times, once every 3 weeks, and he thinks I will
tolerate it well. I won't start that for a while because I need to
heal and then have whatever additional surgery is called for.

So it's a little like having a deranged tour guide take me around the
world on a completely different path than what I thought I would
travel. It's not all on my timeline either. I wanted to get to the
surgeon today, to deal with a pocket of fluid under my arm, and I
sobbed in frustration about having to wait until tomorrw. I think
that was the stress of yesterday ; I cried a little in the car but for
whatever reason hadn't been able to really let it all out. But I also
cried happy tears today seeing one of my longtime friends I have missed.

But when fall comes, most of this should be done. And in the meantime
I have sweet beautiful women helping my family take care of me. I have
my old pals from the big red K (my last job)and my best friends from
college back, encouraging me daily on Facebook. I have a webcam to see
my sister's smile when I need to, and there are planes and things to
make this all easier.

I have friends buying me scarves and planning to knit me hats and
trading scar photos with me.( It's hard to imagine doing that unless
you have a bruise that looks JUST like the budweiser crown or a scar
like an orchid leaf.)

My iphone has been my thread to the outside world and it is never far
from my side. I can read pioneer woman, Nienie, and photography blogs,
and Twitter my temporary frustrations away. Oh, and make snarky
comments about what's on tv. (I'm carlyq80. It's not Pulitzer prize
material )

I know this spring and summer will drag but suddenly be over.
Hopefully I can have a whoopass labor day party and graduate to
Tamoxifen. I just have to do the next step, and the next, and the
next. Yesterday was craptastic - tomorrow I'll feel better.

Please pass along your favorite web page or Twitter feed. I need
plenty of distractions!!!

Monday, January 25, 2010

There's an app for that

iFart. No, I'm not kidding; there is an app that you can use to make
your phone fart: start it and set your phone down and if someone moves
it the dang phone will fart. You can send farts to your idiot friends'
phones if they have the app...I think we can all be grateful for this
app...not being on most phones as a default. I can just imagine being
the wife of someone who would think that was SO funny. ::::shudder:::::

That being said there are some apps that I am having fun with in the
wee small hours of the morning as I wait for pain meds to kick in.
Spin art is fun. Like my picture?

There are some that I use very often like the Facebook app and a
Twitter reader. The Kindle reader works pretty well. It won't start a
fight on a plane ....(my sister is here for a few days and had to
listen to some girl go ON and ON about her real kindle...)

There are other apps I've gotten like Camera bag, which takes a pic
and makes it look like a Polaroid or several other camera styles.

Scoremobil gives me whatever sports update I may be looking for.

Zen Garden is very soothing. If covers the screen w fake sand you can
rake with your fingers, and you can add rocks, shells, etc while
soothing sounds play. In the newest version you can play yourself to
sleep with a self timer. That's what I'll be doing now. Oh listen,
it's starting to softly rain. Goodnight.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Happy happy happy

Obnoxinurse made an encore visit as I was checking in on Tuesday.
Irony... "do you remember me?". I think her sole purpose in my world
was to tell me I *can* set limits. The other nurses were SO nice.

Things didn't go perfectly smooth; I have a blown vein on the back of
my hand from a less than fabulous IV input. Ow ow ow that hurt. But
that was the only stumble; the surgery went very well.

So, thanks to better living through pharmaceuticals I went through the
following days fairly easily. My arms feel something like they were
tied in neat squareknots for a few days. Ab muscles that have been off
duty for quite a while are NOT pleased with me. But purple surgical
superglue? Eeeek. Flaky and creepy, hands down my least favorite part
of this. I "know" logically I won't split the incisions. But a part of
me is anxious every time I reach past a certain range.

Mr. C brought me home Wednesday and we opened our very own buffet.
Friends and family brought us macaroni and cheese, chicken parm,
teriyaki, side dishes like salads, pasta, scalloped potatoes and green
beans almondine and biscuits and brownies (lots of brownies). Turkey
soup, made from scratch by our friend who could easily lift a fridge
w/ one hand - and my fridge is PACKED rightnow.

But my nail tech was asking for me today, and I am all caught up on
Burn Notice thanks to a marathon yesterday. I loves me some Michael

Monday, January 18, 2010

This is fun, no?

Today I went for some pre-op work including being quizzed by an obnoxious twit who seemed hell bent on figuring out WHY I FUCKING GOT CANCER. It wasn't enough to tell her no, I didn't have family history of any sort; she progressed to what kind of work I do and where I live and so on. Fortunately another hospital employee rescued me for the next step of items on the checklist before I had to imprint her keyboard on her nose.

My mother has been very supportive and cooperative since one little bump in the road got resolved; she had a winning quote when I told her about Obnoxi-nurse. "You should have told her the cancer fairy bit you" (...on the boob). Ten points.

I had sentinel node mapping today. You can google that if you feel compelled to learn more than these two facts: It's part of figuring out whether cancer cells have spread to nearby lymph nodes. It involves injecting radioactive material near the tumor and watching the migration of that material over time, via various diagnostic equipment that includes a fucking wooden spoon with a pointer on it that shows up in the high tech screen, (so that they can reach far enough into the MRI sort of machine and pinpoint where they want to mark) and also a Sharpie used to make a VERY sexy "X" on the spot of the most visible node. Big time technology. I have Sharpie marks on my armpits. That's hot.

What you would not find on google is that because they don't numb you (the needle full of numbing medication hurts anyway so why bother) the feeling is not unlike having someone shoot your ta-ta full of flaming lighter fluid. Whimpering and crying ensued, and frankly I like to think I'm a big girl, having delivered a 9lb 12 oz baby without caesarian. Fck fck fck it REALLY hurt. The doctor was cute though. I told him my Kanye joke. "I'ma let you finish, but cardiac ablation is the worst procedure ever. The worst surgery EVER!" It was a weak joke, because I don't know if he realized I had that procedure, but it made him and the assisting person laugh.

I will work on not whining further.... probably won't post for a while due to pain meds and such. Think happy thoughts for me of puppies, kittens and rainbows. Oh, and unicorns. Definitely unicorns.

Friday, January 15, 2010


When I got back from lunch the workmen were all standing there looking
at the fountain.

By the end of the day it was shut off.

Frankly it is too tall - it gets water on the stairs that pass over
it. And the stones are lovely but the basin is kind of plain and empty.

J- fish was alive when I left. He was kind of giving me "take me with
you" faces. Ok, now I really am just kidding.

The droids were very sweet and wished me good luck, by the way. They
want me to email our boss how I'm doing next week. Mwahahahahha. I
wore them down in only 8 days. After my surgery I will work on getting
us all out to lunch once a month.


These people have some serious water issues. This is in the lobby of
my building; today is the first day i've seen it with water flowing.
It was being fixed yesterday, and apparently a few days from now there
will be water all over the entire lobby floor and it will be emptied

Yesterday EMT 'droid said that J-Fish was burying himself in gravel
and things didn't look good.

I went by a little while later and he was hiding near the back wall
behind a big rock. But I swear to you, he saw me and came right out. I
shook my finger at him and said "Don't you go and die on me now" and
he DEFINITELY moved his whole face from side to side and it looked
like "No"

I laughed at him and said "You promise?"

Then and only then did I notice the guy right behind me smirking at me.

I'm That Girl Who Talks to The Fish.


Thursday, January 14, 2010


I was watching the news this morning and looking at the ruins of the presidential palace in Haiti and thinking about how we often don't appreciate "normal" while we have it. 

I have been waiting for months to get a job and get back into a "normal" routine. Now just as that became possible, I have to go back to unpredictability and it frustrates me to no end. 

I am trying to keep things "normal" for my kids, who are looking ahead to spring and baseball and track and my answer is limited to "um, yeah.... We'll figure out how to do that. "

My insurance is complicated because Cobra can be a challenge on a good day, but they made a clerical mistake on mine that I only recently caught. Mr. Carly can't go see the dentist any time soon. And I could have switched to my benefits from my new job but I have been advised that's not a good idea right now with everything going on.

I will figure it all out but none of it will be quick. 

However this is not so much about "poor me," but more about you appreciating that you're probably reading this in the middle of a "normal" day. So I am asking you to stop and notice that normal, and in some small way give a donation to one of the many earthquake relief funds. Those poor people are much farther away from "getting back to normal" than I am.    

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Yes, I'm doing that again.

I can't seem to type below this photo... But I think I did a shot just
like his last winter, only with more ice. Driving. On the way to work.
In the cold.

So, I am still not driving my own car. I am so thankful for my pal who
has let me "test drive" something for 3 days. When my car broke down
we were with friends and D and his best friend drove me bonkers. It
was the night before my appointment w the surgeon (which went pretty
well, I will get to that...) and so I was sort of already weepy and
not in the mood for my car to die in this random little acces road
behind a school where we do CYO basketball. The tow guy took forever
and D's friend would randomly sing "McGruberrrrrr" loudly. So I texted
him a picture of that character after I got home.

The surgeon, aka Boobie Whisperer, was a trip. My pal warned me she
would sort of stare into space while she, er, felt me up, and I could
honestly see her listening to her fingertips. She's got decades of
experience so I truly feel I am good hands.

She explained that my tumors are small, slow growing, and a bunch of
other things that you WANT them to be if you have to have them. Next
week I will have them removed (just the unlovely lumps, not my entire
Lady Lumps.) Huge relief there - I always swore I would never get fake
ta-tas and so it looks like I'm still ok 'on that front' - man there
so many double meanings in this whole situation....

But I will apparently have to break down and get tattoos, for my
radiation treatments. I can barely SPELL tattoo.

Monday, January 11, 2010

is there a title that covers all of this?

So, it has been a crazy few days. Right now it's 11:11 on the 11th as I am starting to write this post and I do in fact have a few wishes to make.

But on to the recap of my last few days.

Friday started with a little bit of chatting with my coworkers. They seem to talk for a few minutes when they first arrive, then get down to business. I was relieved to feel like they were slowly warming up to me.

Mid morning things got a little bit crazy. I noticed that one guy was acting strange, but I didn't REALLY notice. He was standing off to the side of the room and sort of twisting as though he was trying to stretch his back. I just went back to what I was reading... it turns out that one of my other coworkers is an EMT, and he realized what was actually going on. When HE went over to K, it clicked for me, because of a conversation that had occurred the previous day where K shared some ongoing medical issues with me. I'm trying not to put this guy's business all over the internet, so I'll leave it at that, but my point is that I realized we needed to call 911, and when they arrived he was NOT doing well at all. I'm leaving out parts of the story on purpose, but it was awful for about 45 minutes. So much for my job distracting me from MY medical issues.

K was fortunately doing pretty well after some medical attention, and EMT guy kidded me in the afternoon about "how's that for your first week?" So I felt comfortable saying, well, I won't be back on Monday, but not because of this, because I have to go see the surgeon on Monday, and I dropped one or two other sentences in there, about why. He and I had actually been talking about insurance and he mentioned "prexisting conditions" of his own and so I didn't THINK it would be TMI and I think I was OK on that call.

I am starting to feel that I somehow landed on the Island of Misfit Toys but in an odd way I am very grateful for that. Sometimes people don't understand how unpredictable a medical issue can be. Hurry to make a doctor's appointment, then wait and waaaaaaaait for it to happen, and wait to find out how the next couple of weeks/ months will play out.

We went to our favorite little italian place to celebrate me actually completing ALMOST a whole week of work (I had taken Monday off for a biopsy that REALLY FREAKING HURT afterward, but I guess the first one was a decoy so that I wouldn't fret about the second.)

So then Saturday I got up to cook for the school kiddos. Making chili, which I have never even EATEN, thank you, much less made myself. Fortunately my teammate has a husband for whom Sunday Equals Football and Chili. Did I mention Saturday morning it was THREE degrees out? So fabulous.

Saturday afternoon was my nephew's birthday party and I was happy to drink about four glasses of wine over the course of several hours and play with the babies in my family. My nephew is so damn cute. I get discouraged when I think that I might not see them for a while; I can't roughhouse with a toddler if I'm recovering from some sort of procedures. Blah.

Sunday morning was pretty hard at church. I'm obsessing about when my surgery will be - and is this the last Sunday I'll feel up to singing for a while? And what about Lent and Easter week??? I couldn't bring myself to tell Stanley, because he's very hard of hearing and I didn't want to scream it with everyone around. But I did tell someone that I sat next to for a few years (she has since moved over to sit next to Icky Dick, because Altos can double as Tenors, and the sweet guy who passed away this summer was a tenor, and oddly enough the mass was being said for him, but then these coincidences keep happening...all you need to do is see them, people.) So we were walking out and I told "Hazel" and she stood in the street and hugged me, and I really needed that, because I had been queasy all day stressing myself out. She is just a few years older than me, unlike most of the rest of the choir, so it was definitely the support I needed just then.

I went to the market (it was about TEN out, if you're keeping score) and for some reason I bought a BUNCH of frozen things. I do not have a spare freezer. I just found myself saying "oh, chicken fingers, D can warm those up, and these are the fish we like, and maybe some of these appetizer things would be good to have in the house, ....) You literally could not jam a piece of paper into my freezer right now. The odd part was that walking around the store my stomach was churning and I didn't want to think about lunch but yet here I was buying all this food to have in the house. It's a freakish cousin of nesting, I guess.

So I laid on the couch for a while, then went to D's basketball game later, where my car died. Such fun. 90 minutes to wait for a tow truck. Good times!!!

Thursday, January 07, 2010

Not Nemo

I need a name for my little friend here... He lives near where I sit
with the Droids(who are slowwwwly becoming more talkative).

I have considered Dr. Evil, because there is a Mini Me floating
around, if you will excuse me saying so.

I asked someone his name but all she could tell me was that he was
hiding all day yesterday and they thought he was dead. Fortunately he
looked good today.

Names, anyone????

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Linked Out

I added my new boss as a LinkedIn contact. It's kind of like a Facebook for your professional life. The network of people you've worked with, people who are trying to help you get a new job, like recruiters, etc... (All the people who you DON'T want seeing your Facebook stuff... hahahaha. )

So anway, off to the side I noticed a suggested list of people to add. Somehow, I ended up with Barack Obama's name included on my sidebar. Don't even ask me... I have no idea.

I tried to add him. After all, he's the President, and wouldn't it be fun to have him in my linked in list?

Unfortunately there is a step in the invitation process where you have to answer the question "How do you know Barack?" I sheepishly clicked "I don't know him" and the request was immediately rejected! He never even had a chance to accept my invitation- the program won't let me send a request to him.

Oh well. Maybe one of my other contacts will introduce us.

Hi, ho

So today was my first day on the job, and of course I was almost late.
You take 9 months off, you forget all the stupid things you can do,
like go back for a pair of earrings and "hmmm, maybe not these shoes"
and all lf a sudden it's "geez I really gotta leave!" (thank goodness,
no frost on my windshield!)

I am working in a test lab of sorts; there are 3 guys who already work
there. Maybe they thought I'd ask 1,000 questions if they looked my
way; they didn't speak to me until saying goodbye at the end of the
day. It was discouraging and hilarious all at the same time. Droids. :)

There is a huge skylight over my desk so it was nice and bright.
There's even a great big plant next to my desk. By desk I mean, the
table that my monitor is on, which has no drawers! Where's a girl
supposed to hide her " stuff"???? The rest of the room is kinda dark
so the Droids must like it that way. What say I walk in tomorrow and
flip all the lights way on high???? Hee hee. They'd bury me in the

I have 3 pc's to toggle between(all sharing one monitor) because we
work on multiple platforms, and of course I forgot the key combination
to jump from one to the next. Oopsie. I wrote it down with my best

Let's see, what else. Oh, a mini lunchroom with bad food and no one to
sit with. A maze of cubicles and solid walls. Your basic office
building, but nice and clean. Almost high school, really. Except

Sunday, January 03, 2010

The calm

Life is progressing along while I wait for appointments for a second
biopsy and a surgical consult. I am doing normal things. Groceries.
Church. Getting ready to start my new job.

But I laid in bed this morning feeling crushed and unable to move. I
was worrying about how MUCH surgery I wil need because I have no idea

I feel something like I am waiting for a hurricane to hit land, and
then when the storm/ first surgery has passed I will know what the
effect will be on my house. Until then, this little control fanatic is
running around looking at the sky and fretting.

It seeps through my train of thought more and more frequently,
complicating every decision. How many new pairs of pants to buy for
work? will I work at all next week? what about the week after that ?
Then will my weight go up, down....?

I see people and mentally check their told/ haven't told status in my
head. I am still keeping it fairly quiet and I don't want to bang
people over the head with it. (Hi, happy new year, I have to have
someone cut cancer out of my body soon but I don't know when. And what
did Santa bring you?)

I am looking forward to the distraction of working. Hi ho!!!