Monday, March 25, 2013

Nuclear Farts

I had to add Marvin the Martian to this sign...

Insert Body Here
On Friday I went in for my PET Scan. I had one back in August when I was first diagnosed with cancer so I knew the drill. Things were done a little differently at Penn than they were at our local hospital, who used a small lead-encased vial containing the radioactive material which was carefully extracted and fed into my IV. At Penn, a dishwasher-sized machine held the material & delivered my dose without the nurses having to fiddle with scary containers. I reclined in my honkin' big recliner in a curtained off area with dimmed lights and "relaxed" for about an hour while the marker fluid flowed into all my nooks & crannies. Before the scan, I was asked to use the potty, and once again wondered where all the radioactive pee went. And what about farts? If I farted, would it be a Nuclear Fart, destroying all humanity within scent radius? Fortunately, being the Lady that I am, humanity has been saved.
Michelle, who worked the PET Scan.

Me, relaxin'. That is the machine that delivered my dose of, er, marker fluid.
A few days before my scan, I was convinced I had the worst & most stubborn case of painful Thrush ever. I phoned Erin McMenamin, my Oncology CRNP Extraordinaire, and she asked me to stop in after my scan & she would take a look, bless her heart. I brought some goodies with me, in appreciation of seeing me without an appointment. (Make your own cute Spring-Cone.) Erin sat me down & clicked on the Flashlite app on her iPhone (heh-heh!), and took a look.

Little cones filled with Happiness :)

"No, you do not have Thrush." She asked if my tongue felt like pins & needles.
"YES! Exactly!" says I. Erin explained that this is because my nerve endings are healing so this is a Good Thing.

Hurrah! I am so relieved to hear that this is all part of the healing process.

And here is a picture of Erin, for whom I am mightily grateful for:

Erin McMenamin, MSN, CRNP and
TCP (Totally Cool Person)
It is Sunday night as I write this. I find that I am only a little nervous about my scan results. I have not cleaned out any drawers all weekend. (Although I did not send out invites for Easter at our house ~~ just in case.)

Things I am noticing... 
(feel free to skip, I write this mainly for others in my Throat Boat)
• My hair is growing back! I backed up to Craig, flipped a handful of hair up and commanded, "Look!" Craig asks, "What am I looking at?" I turned around and smacked him in the arm. "My HAIR is growing back!" I explained.

• Sometimes I sleep great & sometimes I am awake until Dawn spreads her rosy fingers, yada, yada, yada. I fill the space between the small hours by listening to podcasts. A recent one I've stumbled on after googling: "Stories", is one called "Risk". One story a week is produced and I have listened from 2010 all the way up to the late 2012's. Sleep better return before the stories run out! Other favorites are This American Life and Selected Shorts.

• I do the Lymphatic message on myself daily and try to wear my attractive compression bandage as I go about my day here at home, whipping it off & behind my back when any of the boys come home. My left ear gets blocked up, then clears. I'm guessing this is because of my lymph fluids saying, "Where the heck are we supposed to be going again?". Also, a tooth-achy kind of feeling in my jaw that comes and goes.

• And my poor tongue! It's sore and it's tiresome to eat and talk. I didn't realize just how much I thoroughly enjoyed those two activities. Craig's probably praying this continues, heh-heh! A Silent, Skinny wife.

TMI Alert!
Because my tongue and throat are a bit different than my original stock issued model, eating takes time. My small bites of food tend to form into a big mush ball and I have to keep quietly coughing it back up into my mouth for several go's before I can finally swallow it. If I am by myself, I cough it up with all the gusto, noise and facial contortions of our black lab, Shadow. I drink lots of water with my meals.

My 15 minutes of Fame, courtesy of Cancer

I was contacted by Penn for an interview about my experiences as a patient and to link this blog with their page so others going through this can come visit me. I am thrilled to help anyone I can. When the interview is up on their site, I'll post a link.

So now it's Monday

Waiting for results. Will post when I hear!


  1. Oh I peeked at the results so - Sorta like peeling back the wrapping on presents on Dec 20th.

    What a good idea to link to your blog. There is comfort in knowing what to expect. Pins and needles mean healing (whoo!).

    Bunnies eat in small bites too so the wrap is perfect. Little by little, hop by hop. Just stop before they get the notion of carrying a rabbits foot. I digress. I know, surprise.

    So happy you are flipping that hair around and that is staying put. Craig did not even notice either way.

    1. Miz. Munch! Always a delight to see that you have visited me! Hope you are enjoying life in that fun, witty Munchberry Style. As I read your reply, I fished out my Bunny Head Wrap and put it on for today's wear, so you see, you are good for my health!

      xxx's & ooo's