Entries Tagged as 'his & hers'

ends & oddhealth & medical

It almost feels like a plan…

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So, where did we leave off? I think I was in Atlanta (sort of). Two good things came out of that trip to Atlanta. Well, one for sure good thing and one possible good thing. The absolutely good thing was that I got to spend three days with a great friend. We caught up on about 10 years worth of news. In the past ten years I think we had seen each other 5 or 6 times, tops. It was pretty great. I’m bad at letting people help me, but she was extraordinarily helpful. Everyone should have someone just like her to accompany them to important third opinions with doctors. Sometimes she heard them say things that I missed, sometimes she reassured me that I heard what I thought I heard, and she took amazing notes that I have already gone back to many times. Thanks JJW, you’re the best.

The other potentially good thing? A lead on a Naturopath MD Oncologist. We’ll see how that turns out in a couple of weeks. The doc is super far away, but does phone consults (for a bajillion dollars, of course). Hopefully it will be worth it.

Other than those two things, that cancer center was not what I hoped. They do have a great Naturopath MD on staff, I liked her a lot. The surgeon that I met with, however, was the least pleasant consultation that I have had yet. By far. Real far. The biggest red flag for me was that the schedulers set me up with an appointment to have a chemo port put in before I ever even met with a doctor. Um, hello, what? And they kept ordering tests for me. The trouble I had with that was that I just wanted to speak with the doctors first. Also, everything there was out of network for my insurance. It was not going to be cheap. Had I done everything they asked, I would have had a port, an EKG, a bone density scan and a CT scan. I’m sure that if I were headed there after having a really bad experience somewhere else, or feeling like I was ready to just jump into treatment, that would have been fine. That’s not where I was, though, mentally. So, the twenty people who worked there and told me that I had “made the right choice” by seeking treatment there, just sounded creepy to me.

Meanwhile, I started to feel not as great as I was feeling the last few months. I came home and started trying to catch up after being gone for four days, and I still haven’t caught up. How many days has it been now? Ha! I haven’t had any energy. It doesn’t help that I’m still coughing from that flu we had. I think the cough made me think I was just still getting over something. Then on this past Tuesday I had a PET scan (ordered by Moffitt oncologist who speaks very quickly but is still my favorite of the three that I auditioned). The good news is that I am not riddled with cancer or anything crazy like that. It is still contained in the one boob and one lymph node. The bad news is the scan showed that there is something wrong with my thyroid. (So, I’m anemic, and my thyroid is out of wack. If you see me at the kid’s school, sleeping on the sidewalk, maybe just scoot me into a spot where I won’t get stepped on.) Endocrinologist, here I come!

The other bad news (at least I’m taking it that way at this point) is that “standard of care” requires that 2/3 of my surrounding lymph nodes have to be removed. All because of that one lymph that went astray. It seems excessive to me, and there are clinical trials going on to determine if that is really necessary, but that doesn’t help me now. Add to that the fact that they won’t build my bionic boob yet because they want to make sure I don’t need radiation first, and I’m a little annoyed with the process at the moment.

I do like to bright side things, though, and I finally have a date for surgery. April 10th. Mark your calendars, cause’ we’re having a raging kegger on the 9th and I will be topless! Gotta get the most use out of these before one is gone! Obviously, all but the surgery date is a joke. As long as my thyroid isn’t holding anything up, that’s the day.

I keep moving the goal line of my expectations, but it hasn’t reached the edge of the cliff yet, so there’s that! Actually, I still feel pretty stinking positive, maybe more than I did a month ago, maybe more than I should. Ha!

ends & oddhealth & medical

There has to be a better way

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Catching up. I’ve fallen behind on my information dissemination. I don’t like to post that I have questions but not answers. I don’t like to call friends and say that I have taken tests without being able to give them results. I’m trying to keep up, though, and there are still some missing results.

When I had that infection and the doctor freaked out and biopsied my lymph node, I literally had three thoughts about it at once. My first thought was that my lymph nodes have felt electric (best way I can describe) for quite a while, so the cancer was probably there already. My second thought was that the node was just swollen because of the infection and this was just an overreaction biopsy that would prove everything is fine. My third thought was that the infection had somehow shoved the cancer up in that node like a bulldozer, but maybe it would ease back down when the infection was gone. All these opposing views are just constantly bouncing around in my head about everything that is going on with me. If you imagined that I overthought things before, well, old me’s got nothin’ on cancer me.

I went on with my life, as I do. I took my antibiotics, started feeling better, met with the plastic surgeon at Moffitt, left feeling confident that he could build me a bionic boob with my (just so tiny) leftover baby belly fat (for the record, he called me skinny), and went home to wait for the scheduler to call. That was on Wednesday the 15th. On Thursday the 16th I felt well for the first time in a week, like truly up an at ’em well. I felt like I had the first part of a plan and it was kind of coming together. (The missing piece was/is still finding a more integrative oncologist who will work with me on alternative or natural therapies in place of or in conjunction with the most targeting chemo for my type of cancer.) I’m not a “let’s throw all the poisons into my system and hope for the best” kind of girl. On Friday the 17th I started to feel like I had caught the house cold (care of daughter and husband), and that night I got a call from the doc that my lymph node came back positive for cancer. He said his team would call me on Monday to schedule a PET scan, and we would go from there. He mentioned starting chemo and postponing surgery. On Monday I called Moffitt and the nurse also said this would postpone surgery. She scheduled me an appointment with their oncologist on March 7th. The freaking wheels at Moffitt turn ever so slooooowly.

Well, the PET scan machine at the radiology lab broke down. I have been so sick this last week and a half. It was like I had the cold that froze time, because I can’t seem to get things going. I have now been scheduled for a scan with that radiologist every day for a week. Every day they call and reschedule for the next day. Yesterday was the last time they did that. Today the folks at CTCA said that when they called to inquire about the results of my PET scan, this broken down place actually told them that I canceled my appointment there myself. I’ve given up on them entirely. Moving on.

As I write this now I am in a lobby called the Peach Outpatient Center at Cancer Treatment Centers of America. It’s in Newnan, Ga. (Big sign in town reads: “Newnan, Ga, City of Homes.” No homes anywhere else, ya’ll! We’ve got all the homes!) I’m about forty-five minutes SW of Atlanta for a third opinion and to see what the oncologists here are like.  I thought it was closer to Atlanta, so that’s a bummer. You have probably seen the commercials for this place. It is definitely a for profit company, but they sell themselves as the more integrative and natural place to cure your cancer. I will be judging them on that, for sure. It’s the whole reason that I came all this way.

First impression is that everyone here is going out of their way to prove to me that they are nice. They keep telling me that I have made the right choice by coming here. People at Moffitt are nice too. My first doctor in St. Pete was also super nice. It’s not like I’m shopping around for the nicest people to treat me. If you are a total bitch with with least invasive, most effective, not so poisonous cancer treatment, one that you know will work on my cancer because you have done the genome test, then you’re my bitch. It is a little sad here, as it is at Moffitt. Big buildings full of sick people are sad, it doesn’t matter how good the buildings smell, or how nice the garden is. Luckily, a very good friend is getting on a plane right now to hang out with me here for three days. Leave it to us to figure out how to turn this into a slumber party. Love that woman.

I know that people are wondering why I haven’t started any surgery yet, or started some kind of chemo yet. I’m not doing nothing. I’m getting healthy in every other possible way. I’m studying my butt off (wishing I’d had an interest in this before, because I’ve learned so much). I’m approaching this in the most thoughtful and measured way possible. I want to live. I mean really live, like get past this and be healthier than before. It might feel to others like I’m dragging my feet or not moving fast enough, but I’m getting it done, I swear.

 

 

ends & oddhealth & medical

So that happened

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Last Wednesday was super stressful. Thursday was terrible and weird. Friday was worse than both. Today is almost normal, so I’ll write about it now. We’re all fortunate I was in too much pain to type on Friday.

I’ve been reading a lot about the mind body connection with breast cancer. I’m a believer. When I find myself getting anxious or stressed out I can feel the blood flowing to the tumor. I’m trying really hard to be mindful of what I am doing to myself physically when I go down my emotional rabbit hole(s). On Wednesday morning I was feeling great, then early in the afternoon I started to stress about something. It was a small thing, but then I picked up kids and they were both at their most intense. This got me really started up. By the time I was trying to handle the stress that showed up in the evening, well, let’s say all my coping strategies were used up. I felt blood rushing to my chest like a tidal wave. Then I started to feel pain. I tried to breathe my way out of it, but felt totally stuck.

Thursday morning I had a (previously scheduled) acupuncture appointment first thing. I thought for sure this would fix me. It did help, but by this time the pain was pretty intense. It was a chilly morning, so I didn’t notice that I just couldn’t get warm. I went home and took a nap. When I woke up, James was home for lunch and I had a fever of 101. Plus pain that felt like the worst mastitis ever possible (if you have not breast fed or have no boobs just take my word for it, this freaking hurts). I texted my go to TCM practitioner at TYM because I had just seen her for the acupuncture. She said she thought that, given the fever, it was an infection (why didn’t that occur to me?) and that if I didn’t want antibiotics she could treat me with herbs, but maybe I should call my boob doctor. I did call, and they put me on the books for 8:30 the next morning.

Friday morning at the doctor was not as I expected it would be. After the idea of infection was been brought up I had thought, “duh.” I figured I’d see the doc, get antibiotics for the week, and go back to my TCM for some probiotics next week (I would also like to say here that I avoid antibiotics like the plague and only use them for true infections. Because I would like them to be of some use to my children. You know, in future land.)

The doc and I chatted, I made boob jokes and she laughed. Then she took a look at the problem. Her whole demeanor changed. She started the ultrasound machine up. She took out her little tape measure. She used the word necrosis. She said she felt that the tumor was spreading (she may have said infiltrating, the oncologist uses this term), that one of my lymph nodes had also blown up, that she was going to do a biopsy right now. She said that I needed to stop thinking about what my plastic surgery options were because this was an emergency. She said I needed to start chemo immediately and have surgery sooner than planned and no reconstruction because there would be lots of radiation. I shook uncontrollably the entire time that she did the biopsy of my lymph node. I cried my eyes out.

In my car, after it was over, I called my husband and my mom. I told them both that I potentially had a very different diagnosis now, and also an appointment on Monday with an Oncologist. Obviously, I spread my worry all around and freaked everyone out. Of course, they want to know, but still.

I texted my TCM and she called me back. We talked about what the doc had said about necrosis. I couldn’t remember if the doc was saying it was necrosis or could be necrosis. Also, there was the fact that I never had time to ask if I should take antibiotics, just to rule out infection. I promised I would call the doctor with my follow up questions. To her credit, the doc responded by calling in the prescription for me. To my TCM’s credit, she sent me a message that she felt sure this was an infection, and told me to send daily updates. That made a huge difference for me, mentally.

By Monday morning my fever was finally gone. The oncologist examined me and agreed that it looked like an infection (at this point it was much less red, painful, and swollen), then he cancelled the order for my chemo. He also went over test results for my concern over rib pain. Everything came back normal. I even convinced him to order a mammaprint for me from my initial biopsy sample. It should tell me with a good bit of accuracy what my chances are for recurrence, and whether chemo will be a good move for me at all, like ever.

When the appointment was over I went to the beach and sat in the sun for 40 minutes, just breathing. Obviously, I need more of this type of thing in my life. Probably some better coping mechanisms as well, while I’m at it.

ends & oddhealth & medical

Some days

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On Thursday last week I got a second opinion. It was actually an identical opinion to the first one, so the only thing second about it was the order. I still have cancer (I wasn’t actually thinking that part would change). The tumor that is the nastiest is still oddly shaped, so taking even just that would mean losing the bottom 1/3, at least, of my right breast. The DCIS toward the center still makes surgeons want to take the whole breast. The tiny benign lumps toward the top still bring no one much joy or solace. Here we are.

I will say that I like this doctor very much. She strikes me as someone who has lived a life knowing that she is always the smartest person in the room. That’s my kind of doctor. Still, perhaps because she’s a woman, she did not dismiss any of my personal efforts at trying to get my health in order. She was not dismissive in any way. She answered all of my questions as though I was at least maybe the second or third smartest person in the room. I left feeling like she should be my surgeon person, which meant, of course, that there would be a wait to have her treat me. Dr. Smartest will not be free tomorrow.

I still felt okay. Actually, I felt a little lighter for the rest of the day. Maybe coming to terms with the very real likelihood that I will be under the knife soon, like it or not, settled something in my mind. I abandoned google and the Facebook cancer groups for two whole days. I spent a day playing activist with my daughter. I’d say, other than thinking about what to eat and drink and take, I barely thought of cancer for those two days.

Then Sunday I was trying to figure out how to get CBD oil (cannabis) and an MM card in Florida (I still don’t know), when I read a post by a woman dealing with bone mets in her ribs. She described the feeling in her ribs as an ache like a deep bruise. Ive been having intermittent pain in my ribs on the right, under the tumor site. At first, I thought I pulled something, but it didn’t really feel like a pull. I feel it more when I reach up high, it aches but doesn’t really pull like a muscle. On Thursday I didn’t bring it up with Dr. Smartest because I hadn’t felt it in days, makes sense that it would return on Saturday. So, now I have to call docs and see if anyone will do a CT scan or something for me.

Back to google we go. Back to the phone. I hate the phone.

Some days I’m just not laughing. I’m just not funny. I can’t go on and do the dishes and the laundry and make my smoothie and think about something else. Some days I’m just sad. Even though I’ve been told that my attitude is important here in Cancerville, some days are too hard. I can’t help but think about the worst possible outcomes. I can’t help but think every word I say to my kids this year should be carefully chosen. I can’t help but think I’m somehow wasting precious, precious time. It’s unreal and it’s painfully real at once. I don’t really know what to do with that today.

 

ends & oddhealth & medical

Everyone on TV is dying of cancer

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Seriously, every time I watch a show or listen to a podcast, someone is either dealing with the impending death themselves or had a parent who died of cancer when they were young. At some point I might have to just give up and do a media blackout. What I really need is a cancer rating website. The show/podcast/movie gets a C if it contains cancer death, an NC if there is no cancer reference, and a FY (fuck, yeah) if the storyline contains a person who beat cancer and then died of old age. That should be a thing.
While I’m at it, I would also like a restaurant that serves all the food that fights cancer, prepared deliciously. Everything will be organic. There will be no plastics in the room anywhere, not even in the seat under your bottom. No dairy, no meat, no sugar, no gluten. There will be wild caught salmon on Fridays only (moderation, people!) And maybe, on late Saturday nights, when there is a band (with no cancer songs- EVER) they will serve baked potatoes. This place will know how to make broccoli and brussels sprouts taste amazing (without a grill in site. Because carcinogens.Duh.) It will make the most wonderful dishes out of berries and also mushrooms, not together obvs. There will also be more than one organic tea option, maybe more than 20. The real kick, though, what will sell the place to all the cancer peeps and their friends, is the incredible fact that flax oil and turmeric is added to everything, BUT YOU WILL NEVER TASTE IT! I have to stop, I’m getting excited, and this place will not exist.
I need that restaurant. Feeding myself is a part time job. Trying to eat all organic and fresh takes time. So much chopping. So much shopping. Lucky for me I’m also doing intermittent fasting. That cuts out a meal in the middle, though crafting a healthy snack can sometimes be just as laborious. Can someone invent a self cleaning juicer? I’m asking for a lot today. Better start playing my cancer card.
My other part time job is studying cancer. Today I was trying to figure out the results of some follow up blood work (while I listened to a guy on Fresh Air talk about losing his mom to cancer). No more accepting the CBC form with the results and then throwing it away because I have no idea what it means. Now, I actually need to know what it means. Today it meant that my Vitamin D level is just barely in the normal range, so keep up the supplements. My iron indicators have gone up a bit, but not enough. Still anemic, wah wah. My B12 and folate are good, though, so it’s definitely the iron thing. What I don’t understand is why my platelet count went down to normal. Still looking into that. Hey- maybe the cancer is gone?! WEEEEEEE! No more blogs. The End.

ends & oddhealth & medical

First update

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So, it turns out that as far as cancer is concerned, I am not a mutant. No genes that make me necessarily predisposed to get this again. Though I will say that the genetic counselor made sure to let me know it is entirely possible that I am a cancer mutant, and that my particular mutation is as yet undiscovered. That’s a buzzkill, counselor! Apparently, if she were me, she would get a double mastectomy and have her ovaries removed as well. I will cling to as many of my lady bits as I can keep until they truly must go! That’s just how I intend to handle this.

In case you are wondering, I have drastically altered my diet and have begun taking supplements- some recommended by my probable soon to be surgeon, and some recommended by the lovely and talented TCM physician at Thank You Mama (to be fair, the surgeon is also lovely). I am also anemic and have to get that figured out and taken care of.

This morning’s appointment with the doctor was all about lumpectomy vs. mastectomy. No final final decision but I have to make it soon. Next up is to make an appointment to get blood work done- must check my iron again and look at my vitamin D levels with my GP. Then a consultation appointment must be made with a plastic surgeon. That is a sentence that I never thought I’d write! Then appointments for a second opinion, even though I do really like my probable lovely surgeon. I think it’s the right thing to do. This Friday I’ll be at Thank You Mama with my full test results to work up a complete game plan for the things that I can control (like what goes into my big ‘ol piehole).

I’m tired, but I’m trying to stay funny. Every once in a while I think about something that I need to teach the husband to do for the kids, just in case. You know, the mom things that I do. The stuff that just gets done and no one will notice until there is no one there to do it. And then I think: “Fuck it, just let him figure it out!” Ha! Just kidding. Then I push it out of my brain and try to go back to focusing on killing cancer, instead of focusing on the chance that it will kill me.

ends & oddhealth & medical

Now, I guess, it’s real

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I’m the type of person who works things out in writing. I make notes of my thoughts. I make lists. Facebook is the best, I swear status updates are like a combination of therapy and a vehicle for my need to feel like I’m entertaining people. If I didn’t write it down, or put it into font, did it happen? Maybe not.

Recently, though, I’ve been struggling with something that I haven’t shared online, for which I’ve taken no notes, for which I’ve just today started my first list of things to do. It’s been going on since September, really, and I’m just making my first list. Pretty easy to look back at the last few months and realize that I didn’t want it to be happening, but it turns out that I totally have cancer.

I did tell just a few people, family and some friends. My mother I told in person, because, you know, she’s my mom. My husband made some phone calls. I did send a few text messages. In regular life, I don’t do phone calls unless it’s an emergency. Texting is my favorite, but this time I would have rather not been communicating at all. I only told these people because I felt the need to explain why I’ve been avoiding everything and everyone.

The thing is, if you ask me how I’m doing, I will cry. If you ask me if my kids know (they don’t), I will cry. If you tell me that you care about me and will help out with whatever I need (I don’t know what I need), I will cry. I don’t want to cry in public.

I can talk about kids, the crummy school system, our new kitten, this hot and dry winter, the new Netflix series (or The Walking Dead, or GOT), TED talks, and podcasts, but not politics (not this year), and not cancer.

Initially, when we told a few people, it was a relief to not have to pretend anymore that everything is swell and that my new business isn’t quite taking off because I’m just moving slowly (I am moving slowly but I’m not taking my time, it’s totally cancer’s fault and apparently I’m also super anemic). Then I started to have to field phone calls and explain things that I don’t yet understand. I started to have to talk about treatments that I haven’t decided on, and listen to people cry as they tried to deal with things themselves. Opinions are beginning to arrive as well. I imagine that will only increase, and dramatically.

So, maybe this is as good a way as any, or even the best way for me, to share this with people. Hopefully they won’t call me crying, or ask me what I need (seriously, I don’t know. I could use a stiff drink but I read that it’s a no-no.) Hopefully they will still invite me out for stuff, and maybe won’t give me “the face” too much (the one that says: “I’m totally thinking sad thoughts about your cancer right now, I wish you would tell me how I can help.”) If you need to make the face, maybe make it toward my back as I walk to the bathroom.

If you want to know how I’m doing, physically, I have invasive ductal carcinoma in my right breast. It is stage 2 at 2.1 centimeters, though the cut off for stage 1 is 2 centimeters and my doctor initially was referring to it as “stage one, but kind of stage 2.” There is apparently no stage 1.5. The cancer is estrogen and progesterone positive, but HER2 negative. I hear that you really want to be HER2 negative, but when I met with an oncologist and made a joke about having “the good breast cancer” he did not laugh. I guess it’s not that good.

If you want to continue to know how I’m doing, physically or otherwise, you can check back here. I’ll need to keep working out my thoughts, and if you feel like you need to cry about it, you can get it over with before we hang out. Ha! (I do want to hang out, it turns out that people who close themselves off socially when they discover they have cancer tend to have a greater risk of death. My kids need me to live, so text me when you have time for tea. Hey! Maybe that’s what I need.)

family & parenting

Two Year Old Conversation

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That title may be misleading. I’m not talking about a conversation that has been going on for two years, but rather the conversation that occurs between myself and my two year old.

Most of the really intricate ones take place in the car or at night just before bed. In the car she asks lots of questions. Right before bed she often tells on herself, her brother, or her father. For instance, today she wanted me to know that daddy said the pizzeria at Great Explorations did not have real pizza that you could eat. She wanted me to say he was wrong, and that she should have been allowed to eat the pizza, which I’m pretty sure is made of felt. Had to side with Daddy on that one. [Read more →]

his & hersThe Emperor decrees

The Emperor decrees a reduction in media message-sending

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I have been declared Emperor of the World. Let us not waste time explaining why or how; let’s all simply accept the fact that we are better off, as a result; hence, my next decree:

Emperor’s Decree No. 1/10: The Emperor is sympathetic to the historical subjugation of women; to the unfair treatment they have received (and still receive) at the hands of a male-dominated world. The Emperor also recognizes that attempts have been (and should have been) made in the arts and in media to paint women in a more dignified and empowered light. This should continue. But, in the interest of balancing things out as the obese ship of society rights itself, we think it would be okay to lighten up just a little with the message-sending. Therefore, henceforth, the Emperor decrees that, in a minimum of one-out-of-ten television commercials, the woman/wife/girlfriend in a couple must be depicted as the idiot, instead of the man/father/boyfriend. Just one out of ten, is all we ask. Also, one-out-of-ten female characters in action movies must NOT be a Kung Fu, sword-wielding, back-flipping, killing machine. Let the campaign for total sexual equality continue! Let’s continue to hurl the stones of social-conscience at the glass ceiling! — let’s just cut back the heavy-handedness by one-tenth. Let’s have the pendulum swing back, just a bit (if you will excuse the decidedly male-centric metaphor).

The Punishment: Violators will suffer the loss of one-out-of-ten toes. (Or of one pendulum — violator’s choice.)

Now, go forth and obey.

The Emperor will grace the world with a new decree each Tuesday morning. 

his & hers

When Jeb farts in bed it feels like a hate crime…and other cases of smelling too much

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I am assaulted by smells all day, every day. The universe saw fit to bless me with extremely sensitive olfactory glands. I find it to be more of a handicap than a super power. I suppose if I was trained properly I could work like one of those dogs that can smell disease in people. Or possibly I could sniff out drugs…”Yep, bath salts”. But I don’t think there is much call for humans in that career and I’d  hate to take a job away from a dog anyway. It’s kind of their “thing”.

As far as the hate crime offense goes, my fiancé (a wonderful man in many ways) has this one problem. His gut happens to be sensitive to gluten and and several (many) other foods. He also eats a meal like someone’s going to take it away if he doesn’t finish quickly; he just swallows it whole to save time. Consequently he is prone to some serious bouts of intestinal distress in the form of belching and farting. [Read more →]

his & hersmoney

A chain of two links

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Yesterday’s was a sunny post, optimistic and inclusive as befits the holiday. But now, when everyone is nursing a Love Hangover, and perhaps other sorts, it is time for The Rest of the Story. Let these two posts be married, to live and die and be buried but side-by-side for as long as the Coliseum should stand.

A thousand thousand old jokes were born of marriage. I was married by a judge but I should have asked for a jury, said Groucho. WC Fields was harsher still, I believe in tying the marriage knot, as long as it’s around the woman’s neck. With the masters consulted no need to quote further except to note the great philosopher, Al Bundy, favored gay marriage because, hey, why should they get off easy? So what’s it all about, Al-y? Isn’t it love? Of course, in part it is about love. But in part it is about money. It is also about the love…. OF the money, so the scales are a bit off center. [Read more →]

family & parentinghis & hers

Marriage overturned

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Proposition 8 was a heartbreaker for those who loved Candidate Obama the second best. His greatest admirers were those like Samuel Jackson who saw in him an ethnic reflection of themselves. His “message” didn’t mean shit to them. But a close second in devotion is that other bulwark of Democratic politics, the gay community. Though they tended towards Hillary (a known fan of sensible shoes), like many other key groups they saw in Obama a champion of their cause. They were as disappointed as the young hemp enthusiasts but much sooner. They knew on Election Day that Prop 8 had passed adding an Amendment to the California Constitution defining marriage as a union of one man and one woman.

The dissappointment was to some extent their own fault. Candidate Obama had never publicly supported literal gay marriage any more than President Bush had. Rather, like those who took cannibis for medical reasons and hoped to be able to take it legally in any setting, the gay marriage advocates assumed that a President Obama would indeed be actively on their side though his stock response to questions always was, “My position is the same as the President’s (Bush), civil unions.) No one believed it. I don’t believe it. What are the odds that Obama TRULY does not favor absolute equality of gay marriage? As an issue it is uniformly supported by his demographic; elite university graduates/government bigwigs. But an alliance of gays and their  more numerous allies is far from a majority; not even in a Democratic primary. It might be different if the balance of the electorate were, like me, flagrantly apathetic to marriage, gay or sullen. That is not the case. Mr. Hillary knew it although he clearly was hostile to all marriage. He made his accommodations with his own base on gay issues, recognizing two powerful blocks were and are opposed to “gay rights” as we know them. That would be the Catholics and the blacks. [Read more →]

getting older

My 42nd New Year. (Keep in mind my first year was only 43 days long)

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I’m not going to start this blog with an apology about how rarely I blog. If I were hitting you everyday and apologizing each time, it would not change the fact that I hit you every day, would it? No. So let us just not speak of it at all.

I am one of those people who spends some time reflecting on New Year’s Eve. I don’t want to be. I have tried not to be. No getting around it, I just am. I’m not severe about it. I mean, I’m not kicking myself all night for not being who I thought I would be when I daydreamed in middle school. Much. Mostly, I take a quick inventory and try to motivate myself to go in one direction or another.

The first time I remember really putting any thought into it I was six months past college graduation and waiting tables at Cha Cha Coconuts. [Read more →]

family & parenting

Just one or two hours in that room of one’s own.

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I never wanted anyone to take care of me.

I can’t say that I never needed care, just that I never felt much of a need for it. Maybe I didn’t allow myself a desire for it? Hmm.

In childhood it was available in spurts, the care. My father was absent of the ability, or desire. My mother tried her best, but struggled with depression and her ability to care for herself. Maybe that is saying too much about her, or giving her too little credit. Good thing she doesn’t really understand the internet. [Read more →]

his & herspolitics & government

The real tragedy of the Anthony Weiner story: When engaging in a time-honored courtship ritual makes you an object of scorn

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The sending of photos of one’s genitalia to the object of your affection is a beautiful expression of love, desire, and trust. By exposing yourself, you are opening yourself completely to another person. There is nothing so gratifying. There is nothing so perilous. “Here I am, in all my glory,” you are saying. “Accept me, please.”

It takes strength, courage, and genuine affection to express yourself so forthrightly. [Read more →]

The worst of me

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When you are first dating someone you give them all the best stuff, right? Especially if you really hit it off. Because the people you really hit it off with bring out the best in you.  They make you funnier and sexier, and way more relaxed then you really are.

And that’s fine, right? If that didn’t happen, would anyone date at all? If we all started out with a laundry list of why we were such a mess, who would be interested? Well, except for people who are total masochists, or who think they can change you, or believe you will change for them, or are so crazy that they think you’re normal. We all know how relationships with crazy delusional masochists turn out, right? I couldn’t be the only one. Right? Right.

[Read more →]

Bob Sullivan's top ten everythingends & odd

Top ten signs you had a bad Valentine’s Day

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10. The only person who saw you naked was the TSA screener

9. You had to eat at home, because of your date’s ankle bracelet

8. Charlie Sheen made you take a number

7. You found out your date “Stephanie” was really “Stephen”

6. The restaurant you went to was determined by the best coupon he had

5. Your ‘date’ was really a Señor Wences-style puppet drawn on your right hand

4. Your boyfriend’s promise of a seven-course meal turned out to be a bowl of corn chips and a six pack

3. Instead of not having sex, you didn’t have sex three times!

2. Because your date gave you “something special” for Valentine’s Day, you’re now taking Valtrex

1. Your husband thought it would be a good time to tell you about his ‘bromance’
 

Bob Sullivan’s Top Ten Everything appears every Monday.

Bob Sullivan's top ten everythingends & odd

Top ten favorite lines for a Valentine’s Day poem

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10. Although this sonnet’s only ten lines long,

9. And not a sonnet’s needed full fourteen,

8. To call this poem a sonnet would be wrong.

7. So this poem’s dedicated to Maureen.

6. I Love your kindness, wittiness, and grace.

5. I Love the fire burning in your soul.

4. I Love your gorgeous body, lovely face.

3. When we’re together, I at last feel whole.

2. We’ll share Eternal Love, us One together.

1. Or, at the very least, forever endeavor.
 

Bob Sullivan’s Top Ten Everything appears every Monday.

ends & oddhis & hers

The New Mexico Valentine’s Day cockfighting day trip

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Valentine’s Day is the perfect holiday for showing your significant other just exactly what you feel about her. A special day trip can add an extra element of fun and excitement, and makes a unique gift. It’s also important to explore and support local events and landmarks; it helps you to feel more connected to the place where you live. I thought I would share one of my own experiences in unique gift-giving, from many years ago. I hope it gives you some great ideas on what you can do to make your own Valentine’s Day extra special.

I spent my college days at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque. My moving out to New Mexico to be with her impressed my girlfriend, but she was rarely impressed by anything else I did.  My gift-giving skills were, she told me, consistently disappointing.  For instance, one Valentine’s Day I cooked her a meal consisting of Smack Ramen and Spam, with conversation hearts floating in Jell-O for desert (I was poor).  The year before, I presented her with a Bullwinkle T-shirt I had won by eating 40 Taco Bell tacos in a month (she gave it back to me).

Well, this particular Valentine’s Day, the one I’m discussing right now, I was determined would be different.

[Read more →]

Change shows up vs change show downs

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I blogged in December, but I didn’t post it.

The blog was vague. I wanted to talk about something, but I didn’t want to jinx it. So, the blog didn’t really make any sense. It was likely pretty darn uninteresting, as well.

At the time, when I first wrote it, I was pregnant. I was trying to come to terms, in a happy way, with the idea that maybe I could go back to re-planning that whole “married with children” lifestyle. It would be a new version, of course, with my new cake husband, and certainly way better than the Bundy version. Not to mention way better than my previous version, one would hope. [Read more →]

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