Here Goes…

Here Goes
song by Bebo Norman

I never got anywhere
By running away
I never learned anything
Without a mistake
Never loved anyone
By playing it safe
It's a long way down, but
I'm here right now, so...

Here goes nothing,
Here goes everything
Gotta reach for something
or you'll fall for anything
Take a breath,
Take a step,
What comes next
God only knows
But here goes

I don't wanna turn around
and wonder what happened
Never lost and never found
Are one and the same
I wanna run across the battle lines
And take my chances
Not the long way 'round
When I'm here right now, so...

Here goes nothing,
Here goes everything
Gotta reach for something
or you'll fall for anything
Take a breath,
Take a step,
What comes next
God only knows
But here goes

And What good is chance not taken,
What good is life not living,
What good is love not given?

Here goes nothing,
Here goes everything
Gotta reach for something
or you'll fall for anything
Here goes nothing,
Here goes everything
Gotta reach for something
or you'll fall for anything
Take a breath,
Take a step
What comes next
God only knows
But here goes
And God only knows
But here goes

Praying for a Miracle

I asked yesterday if you all could pray for Lea and she needs your prayers more than ever now. Lea is a 24yr old woman who has been battling a brain tumor for 2 years.  Yesterday while in surgery to remove the tumor when she had some bleeding complications.  They removed what they could but had to stop the surgery.  Her family has now been told the tumor is inoperable and she has 3-4mos to live.  It is possible that chemo/radiation may prolong her life some, but the timeline is short.  Shorter than any 24yr old should have.  She needs your prayers.  Her family needs your prayers.  Prayers for help deciding what to do, prayers for hope and faith, prayers for a miracle. 

Edited 8:42pm:
The link to her facebook page <---


Winds of Change?

Winds are raging all around me literally and figuratively. 

The weather today brought several tornado warnings and school closings and they say that the storm’s central pressure is equivalent to a category 3 hurricane.  In fact, they predict waves in the great lakes of 18-25 feet tall!  This isn’t your average fall day, oh no.

As I was driving, I couldn’t help but think the winds were oh so fitting.  I’m sure you are familiar with the expression “winds of change?”  So many things around me and about me are changing and it is this week where things seem to be at their peak.  The weather is a perfect reflection of my life at this moment.

I would appreciate your prayers as I’m going through this and even more than that, I would appreciate your prayers for Lea.



I came home to a warmish house for this time of year.  It was in the 70’s today which is nearly unheard of in Michigan this late in October.  I went over to my slider to open the glass all the way and I found a huge hole where the corner of my screen once was!  I notice that the screen isn’t ripped, [good] but it appears that something pummeled through that thing with quite some force.  I start to wonder… was it something that was outside that came in or…

Crap. Where are the cats? Have I seen both of them since walking in the door. Nope, only Gilbert. Double crap.

I’m kneeling down trying to tuck the thingy back in the indent with the screen tucked behind the thingy – its all very scientific, this screen door repair business – I even got out my flat headed screwdriver to assist. 

As I’m repairing, I’m calling out for Chloe.  I see no fat cat in sight.  Just Gil staring at me like I’ve lost my mind.

I get a sinking feeling and look over my 3 story high railing, hoping not to see a blob of white and gray fur down below. I see no blob.  Whew!

Then I get the most genius idea.  I go back inside and grab the snacks and shake ‘em as hard as I can. Poof!  Fat cat appears! Nom nom nom.

So while I’m entirely relieved Chloe & Gil are inside safe and sound and that I have a newly repaired screen door courtesy of moi, I’m left to wonder… who or what tried to break in or out?


Card Carrying Member

On Wednesday, I came across this article on Yahoo! about concern over the amount of radiation emitted from thyroid cancer patients. Apparently we are setting off alarms in subway systems and contaminating hotel rooms. DUH! You give us a radioactive substance to ingest and then give us the isolation precaution guidelines.  DSCN0844

We can’t be around children or pregnant people and have heard that some people have killed their pets with their radioactivity – BUT – you hand us those pills in the lead container and tell us not to worry because there are no side effects and that they are “safe” to ingest and pose little to no risk to others.  As a patient, I can tell you I was terrified about taking I-131 because I did a whole lot of research for myself because the doctors just dismissed concerns.  I was frustrated, stressed, and let’s face it I was so hypo I wasn’t thinking clearly.  I did the best I could.  I stayed out of my apartment so my radiation didn’t leak through the wall of my bathroom and accidentally injure the toddler living next door.  I stayed away so Gil & Chloe wouldn’t lay near me and later die of radiation exposure.  I brought my own bed linens to the hotel I went to and I didn’t allow housekeeping to enter until I left 7 days later.

I made the big mistake of reading the comments on the article.  I’m sure many people comment just to try and get a rise out of others or because they think they are he-larry–ious.  Calling the patients irresponsible in some cases and saying they shouldn’t be given anything and just left to die in others.   They pissed me off. 

All I have to say is I hope that they and their loved ones never have to deal with cancer.  Especially not a cancer like thyroid cancer where even the professionals can’t agree how to treat you.


Oh Canada!

Eva and I decided to take a girls only trip to Niagara Falls, Canada while she was in visiting from Germany!  We both have passports so why not right?  Beautiful weather, a comfy hotel room, and limited crowds added up to a perfect trip! [It also made a dent in my 101 list!]

DSCN1652 Hotel Room – was huge! DSCN1655 The road we walked down to get to the falls!
DSCN1662American Falls DSCN1663 Canadian Falls
DSCN1664 Me & Eva DSCN1705 Night View
DSCN1686 Canadian Midway DSCN1711 Flags at night
DSCN1713 View from our room! DSCN1725 Rainbow Bridge to the USA
DSCN1735 American Falls from Maid of the Mist DSCN1742 Canadian Falls from Maid of the Mist
DSCN1748 Sporting our ponchos on the Mist DSCN1754 Obligatory hat pic!
DSCN1769Me in front of the American Falls DSCN1787 Riding the elevator near Table Rock


Been Thinkin’

If Sjogren’s Syndrome was ruled out and not even a slight thought in the mind of Rheumy… wouldn’t he have just sent me back to my PCP instead of saying “I’ll see you in 6 months?”  So that must mean he is suspecting something is actually wrong… right? One of the “things” with this disease is that it can take several months to years to get a definitive diagnosis because the symptoms are not always present.  They tend to flare up unexpectedly, making life a little more unpredictable than normal.  As the disease progresses the flares can become more severe and can come closer together.  More severe symptoms of course make the diagnosis easier.

So back to my original thought… is it good or bad that I have to see Rheumy again in 6 months? At this point, I really don’t know.


Still Alive

Just a quick note to say I'm still here and alive but I've been a busy girl!  My friend Eva arrived Sunday night and since then we have been going nonstop since.  Monday was a trip to Klackle Orchard with my mom, aunt, grandpa and baby cousins. [pictures to come soon] Then on Tuesday, we headed to Niagara Falls!  We were there until Thursday when we drove home and then went to see the movie Life As We Know It.  Then this morning we drove to the outlet mall in Howell, MI and shopped till we dropped.  Tons of pics are on the camera, just waiting to be uploaded and we still have 5 more days! More in the days to come… stay tuned!


The Aliens Are Coming

Earlier this week my parents came home to a mysterious message on the answering machine.  The caller whispered in a gravelly voice, “The aliens are coming” and then simply hung up.  The call came from the 615 area code which I have deduced with my ultimate googling powers is the area code for the Nashville, TN area.  We know no one who lives there.  Creepy.  But as a FB friend said “At least you were warned!” [ps Gracie, my mom said the caller sounded like you… LOL]

Chris-and-EvaWhat I find funny about the message is that it is true in a way!  My friend Eva is arriving from Germany tonight and in legal-speak she will be an “alien” in this country. [dear immigration: all proper visa paperwork was filed]  I’m so excited to see her because its been 3.5 long years!  We have a few adventures planned for the next 10 days so stay tuned for updates of our escapades! I might be lax on the blogging because we are out having fun and taking a side trip out of the country for a few days… I promise to post when I can!


The List

As mentioned a few days ago, I was working on making my 101 in 1001 list.  Today, that list is complete and posted for the world to see here!  If you missed the explanation behind the list… basically you make a list of 101 goals or things to complete in the next 1001 days [approximately 2.75 years].  Its like a mix between making New Year’s resolutions and having a 5 year plan.  I like the idea because 5 years seems like a really long time and 1 year sometimes seems too short to complete a bigger goal. 

I’m pretty excited about tackling this challenge and I think my list is very do-able.  I’m really hoping I can complete everything on the list!  Take a look and tell me what you think! And if you decide to create your own list, leave me a link to check yours out!


I’ll See You In 6 Months

No Indian food… not even Real Food Cafe happenin’ here.

The eye doc hadn’t sent the results of the tests she had done to Rheumy yet.  My eye appointment was two weeks ago. Seriously? I told her that I had an appointment coming up with Rheumy and could she please, please, please send over the results as oh so much hinged on them. Why does that take more than 2 weeks?!  It takes me approximately 10 seconds to write and send an email!  Without those results, Rheumy couldn’t say if I do or don’t have Sjogren’s.  What he did say is that I definitely don’t have scleroderma which I didn’t even know was in the differential but was good to know.

So now what?

Rehumy said I have the symptoms of primary Sjogren’s Syndrome: dry eyes, dry mouth, joint pain...  So… use my eye drops and if the eyes get worse go on Restasis.  Chew sugar-free gum, use Biotene toothpaste and mouthwash, up my fluids and if it gets worse try a med that has side effects such as excessive sweating and diarrhea. [NTY!]  For the joint pain, take Motrin and if it gets worse maybe we will try something else.  So really, he says, it doesn’t matter if I do or don’t have it because he would treat it the same.  But that when he does get the results from the eye doc he will let me know and he wants to see me in 6 months.

Ok I get that the treatment is the same and I may just have to deal with the fact that I choke on carrots, popcorn, and hamburger buns. But a diagnosis of Sjogren’s would also mean a higher risk of lymphoma.  As a cancer survivor I already have an increased risk so anything adding even a percentage point higher is a big deal.  Also, I like to know if I should freak out anytime my lymph nodes swell up.  Well, I guess I do that anyway but…

I’m tired of seeing doctors every 6 months, spending my hard earned cash and PTO.  Right now I'm rotating between three I see every 6 months, one I see yearly, and another one I see when I get sick. That’s about 4 too many IMHO.  Just give me some answers and let me figure out the rest.  I’m done with this nonsense.


Plus and Minus

Tomorrow will be a plus and minus sort of day. 

On the plus side, i’m only working a half day and it is supposed to be a bee-E-A-YOU-tee-ful day!

On the minus side, I have to go see Rheumy to find out what he makes of all the blood tests, CT scans, and eye tests I've undergone in recent months.  I’m actually hoping he has something definitive to say instead of just scheduling more tests.  I’m tired of tests.  More tests would be a minus.  If I have Sjogren’s Syndrome [SS] that would be a huge minus.

On the other hand, if I’m told I don’t need more tests, don’t have SS, and don’t have to go back to see Rheumy again… well, then it could be a super plus kind of day. 

It might even warrant Indian food and ice cream.

I’m praying for the super plus version.  I hope you will be praying for that too!



It has been such a whirlwind day and there is so much I can’t say just yet!  I’m a big ball of nerves, anxiety, and excitement and I can’t wait to shout it to the world!  Everything has it’s time and it isn’t the right time just yet…

On a more tell-all note, I’m working on a 101 goals in 1001 days list.  It is a  lot harder than I thought to come up with 101 goals/things that are attainable in a mere 2.75 years.  So far my list is at 45 things and I've been scouring the web for ideas.  Maybe it is finally time for me to actually learn German rather than catching only a word or two when visiting my “other” family.  Maybe it is time to take up running.  Maybe it is time for me to go without cable TV.  There are so many things that could go on the list but I'm trying to make the list attainable, specific and meaningful.

If you have any suggestions for goals/things to do in the next 1001 days, leave me a comment.  I would love to hear them and may just incorporate it on my list!


Goodbye Spikey…

camera 004

My parents had to put Spike down today…

Spike was one of my parent’s cats – we got him when I was in college so I never quite considered him my cat but he was part of the family just the same.   Spike was a ginormous orange cat who was the biggest baby you have ever seen.  He weighed approximately 25lbs and loved to lay on your lap.  If your tummy hurt, he would lay right on it.  If you had a surgical wound, that was exactly where he would plop down.  He tried to heal your hurts with his gentle purring.  Spike also loved to suck his paws like a baby – it wasn’t unusual for him to lay on your tummy purring away while sucking his paws and leaving wet paw prints on your blanket.

spike We took him from the shelter when he was only 3 months old.  By then he was already huge for his age and was overlooked by everyone looking for a kitten.  He had the sweetest disposition and loved ice cubes and cat treats.

Spike earned his name while I was in Europe… yes I left the naming to my dad and sister.  I wanted to name him Colby or Bree but they said every time he gave himself a bath his hair stood up in spikes and it just fit his personality.  We called him Pike or Pikey most of the time and since he was ginormous and had the tail of a squirrel, we decided he was not a cat but a “squicadog.”  We figured out he had to be at least part Maine Coon because of his size and characteristics.  Since he was a shelter cat we will only ever know that he was found on the side of the road.

Goodbye Pikey… you will be missed…



I’m sitting here thinking about my environment [aka: home] and trying to decide if it really fits “me.” 

The answer is: no.

I recently discovered The Clean Sweep Program online – its used by many “life coaches” in an effort to improve the lives of their clients.  There are 4 categories with 25 items listed that they say can help you clean up, clarify and energize your life.  Ok so I bit – why not check it out right?   Who doesn’t want to be the best version of themselves?  So I started looking at the “environment” category… yeah not doing so hot there.  I saw the item “I surround myself with beautiful things.” And then I started looking…

I have lots of things that I like and just a few that I love.  Some things were my style 10 years ago while others are only 5 years behind the times… I started thinking about why I have certain things or where they came from or why I don’t have something else in it’s place.  Recently I bought a new shower curtain and it fits me so much more than the ones I have had before.  Its something so small DSCN0177but it instantly made me like my bathroom more.  My “dislike very much” items of the moment are my couch and loveseat.  They are a sage green color, microfiber that feels like a suede almost with floral pillows, and they are huge… well the couch is anyway, the loveseat is probably normalish.  I’ve had them for approximately 6 years and they are still comfortable [thank you Broyhill] but they just aren’t “me” anymore.  Something much more “me” I would classify as this: sofa

It is smaller than my sofa/loveseat combination and it not only has changeable slip covers, it is also convertible.  Yup, this lovely piece of furniture is actually a loveseat/chaise combination set – you just pop off the arm from the chaise, reattach it to the loveseat and poof!  Genius.

So as I sit here rethinking my environment, I think I just might list my sofa & loveseat on Craigstlist and see if I can’t put a dent in the cost of the new sofa!

Next on the list: the horrible lamps in the picture or my ancient and ginormous television set – replaced with a sleek flat screen! 

I just may become an adult here soon! Of course I might need to win the lottery first…