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First steps in SSD process all done, now I wait

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Yesterday was not a good day for me. I had plans on going with my mom to check to see if my birth certificate, which I needed to finish the application process for SSD, was in her safe deposit box at the bank, and if not, get one at the courthouse, and drop it off at the SSA office here in town. But I woke up with a migraine and nausea, which lasted most of the day. I barely had the energy to put some sweats on to go get the mail, let alone get ready to go anywhere. My shoulder was hurting like hell too.

But I was able to sleep last night, woke up headache free this morning. My shoulder is still very painful, but I know the cortisone shot might take longer to work there if there is a lot of inflammation. At least it's a relief knowing it's not cancer related; now it's just more frustrating than worrisome.

I have a tooth that has been hurting when I bite down with it, I have an appointment with the dentist to have that checked out on Wednesday. It's one I have a crown on, so hopefully it's just a problem with that and not a major dental problem. With the Zometa I am on, I have to be very careful about getting certain dental procedures done, because of the risk of developing jaw necrosis. So even though it's not hurting a lot right now, I want to get it taken care of while it is hopefully still just a small problem.

My shoulder is still very painful today, so my mom did the driving today. Our first stop was the bank, where she checked her safe deposit box, my birth certificate wasn't there, but I did get to see my mom and dad's marraige licence, and my mom's baptism certificate, that was pretty cool! It was on a long scrolled up piece of paper, with a colorful picture of angels on it, really vintage looking, although I am sure at the time, it wasn't considered "vintage" lol.

Since it wasn't there, we had to go to the court house to obtain one. It was pretty quick and easy, just one short form to fill out, had to show my driver's license, and hand over $10.

Next stop was the SSA office. I could have just dropped off my birth certificate and picked it up later, but I wanted to hand it to an actual person. The gal I talked to was so nice! I must have done pretty well with filling out my online forms, because she only had a few questions for me. And I found out that I am definately being processed under the new Compassionate Allowence Act, which isn't a guarantee I will be approved, by the decision will be made faster, I should know by the end of the year. Really glad to have the first part of the process done with it. Now comes the hard part, being patient and waiting.

We went to Big Boy for lunch. Tried the new pumpkin pancakes; sooo good! But couldn't finish them all, just too much to eat.

Last stop was Walmart, picked up my last paycheck, talked to a few co workers, and got some more hugs. Picked up a few groceries before heading home.

No appointments for the next 4 days, so I am going to stay home, relax, and catch up on my laundry, and my sleep.

I want to get back into a fitness routine, but I'm going to take it slow and easy at first. I will start with my stepper or my 15 Leslie Sansone Power Mile dvd, minus the arm movements of course.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MARTHA-ANN 11/14/2008 4:28AM

    Shari,
You've really been though it just lately, hoping you soon pick up a bit.
Take it easy and get some relaxation done. I know it's easier said than done but it will help.
Thinking of you emoticon

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KIMUSH23 11/13/2008 9:19PM

    It sounds like you are getting in some rest and also busy and moving at the same time...Take care of your self and push yourself gently...

emoticonSPARKENDOUSLY Your SPARKPEOPLE Friend emoticon

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Bone scan results and appt. with pain doctor

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

I haven't seen my oncologist yet since my bone scan, I see him on November 25th, but I did get a copy of the written report yesterday, no changes; no increases or decreases, so it sounds like the mets are still stable, a good thing! The radiologist did recommend on the report that a follow up be done in 5-6 months. My previous bone scan was done in March of this year.

I saw the pain doctor today. He thinks the pain in my hip and shoulders is from arthritis, causing bone irritation. I asked about the radiation I had to that hip, and he said the radiation could have done some damage that is not showing up on the bone scan. When he was doing the physical part of the exam, he said my grip on the left side, (the side with the pain) was weaker than my right. I don't think that weakness is anything to do with the cancer, as my cancer was on the right side, and it was only the right side that had lymph nodes removed.

He decided to try cortisone injections first; I had one in the shoulder, and one in the hip. He gives his patient a choice to have a sedative or not first;(you can only have a sedative if you have a driver there with you, my mom drove me.) I chose the sedative. The injections did not hurt much at all; I felt more pain from having the IV put in for the Vercid than from the cortisone shots. I don't even remember the hip injection. Then I was wheeled to a recovery room for half an hour.

When they got me up to walk, the leg with the injection was a little shaky, but that quickly went away once I got home. I spent the first two hours I was home just napping in my recliner. I am feeling some pain in my shoulder, but from the reading I did, that is normal for it to hurt for awhile first, and it may take a few days before I feel relief. My hip is already feeling a little better though.

I have another appointment with him next week, Tuesday at 8:30am, then at 10am, I go to my oncologist's office to have my blood drawn for my labs before my 11/25 appointment.



  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ANTEEKER 11/13/2008 12:38PM

    Hey Im glad you got some good news about your scan.
I hope you get some relief from the pain and stress... I just found through the cancer society, a oncology therapist they offer this service free though one of the banner hospitals here.. I contacted my local cancer society and found this service.. Sending you cyber hugs.

Michelle emoticon

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SSANFORD1 11/12/2008 10:50PM

    MOMCAT
Good news about the bone scan. Have you heard any news on the SSDI benefits? Good luck with that as well. emoticon

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PATRICIA441 11/12/2008 10:23PM

  Sorry about the pain you are having but very glad the scan looked good. Take care of you ! Tender hugs. Pat

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MDTWEETY 11/12/2008 5:39PM

    Hi Shari. You're in my thoughts. Hope the pain subsides soon. emoticon

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TERJEGOLD 11/12/2008 8:06AM

    I'm SO RELIEVED your pain is not new tumors. I was a little worried for a bit. Arthritis is nothing to shake a stick at either, but I'm sure you know where I'm coming from.

I'm glad you are already feeling some relief from the cortisone shots. Continue to take it easy. It sounds ike you are going to start feeling better soon. Hugs!

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MARTHA-ANN 11/12/2008 4:11AM

    Wonderful news Shari, you'll soon be feeling like a Spring chicken emoticon
Thinking of you emoticon

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PINKPADDLERJUDY 11/12/2008 12:03AM

    Dear Shari
Great news! Hope that you start to feel better & better with each day...
Judy

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DEUCE119 11/11/2008 11:19PM

    SHARI, GLAD TO HEAR THAT THINGS APPEAR TO BE STABLE. IT IS HORRIBLE TO WAIT FOR TEST RESULTS. GLAD THE SHOTS SEEM TO BE HELPING. I MAY HAVE TO TRY THEM SOMETIME FOR MY BACK, BUT NOT YET! emoticon emoticon

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CAROLYN0107 11/11/2008 9:09PM

    Shari, this is good news. I'm glad your scan showed that your cancer is stable. It's also good that you were able to get the cortisone shots. I have had to have my heels injected because of pain and it really helped. I too have arthritis, but mostly in both knees. I'm glad you're taking such good care of yourself and that you'll now have time to spend with family and friends. HUGS


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A case of nerves

Monday, November 10, 2008

I hate this; the period of waiting in between having the bone scan and getting the results. I am hoping tomorrow I will find out when I see the Dr.Basch, the pain specialist, but when I called Dr.Pawl's office this morning to confirm that all my reports they needed were sent, the person I talked to on the phone pulled my chart, and she said she was not even sure if they would get my scan results that soon. I had my scan late in the afternoon on Friday, so I am not even sure if the radiologist even had time to look at them until today.

I am trying very hard to keep my anxiety about it under control. I can deal with whatever the results are, it's the not knowing that is the hard part.

It still hurts to use that arm, even little things like taking a container out of the refrigerator or reaching up into a cupboard for something. I keep forgetting NOT to use that arm so much, (my left arm is the one that hurts,) I am in the habit of when I open a cupboard, etc. of opening the door with my right and reaching with the left.

My mom and I are going to check out the Open House sale at the hospital gift shop later today. I plan on doing a little Christmas shopping there. I have the "big" gifts all bought, now it's just a few of the little things I need. While I am there, I am going to have the medical records office put my films from all the xrays, scans, etc. I have had for the last 6 months on a CD for Dr. Basch tomorrow. I will also ask if I can get my bone scan report today. It probably won't be ready yet, but it won't hurt to ask.

Going to spend a few hours with my mom and dad after that, and have dinner out there.

Tomorrow, Kallie has a vet appointment at 11:10am for her annual shots and check up, then at 12:45, I have my appointment with Dr.Basch. After that, hopefully some of my anxiety will be eased a bit, even if I can't get the bone scan results at that time.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MARTHA-ANN 11/11/2008 6:23PM

    Hang in there Shari,
Thinking of you emoticon

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PMCFARM 11/10/2008 11:23PM

  Shari...I'm sending you a emoticon because waiting is never easy. I have been fortunate that usually my scans have been called before final reporting, but the waiting for follow-up tests/appts. can be maddening. When I begin to feel overwhelmed my Father whispers gently "what can you do" "hands off and let me work"...then and only then do I feel peace. MarilynC. (PS He has to rescue me often)

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HEIDI14DAN 11/10/2008 3:02PM

    I'm sorry you have to wait so long for the results. Sometimes I don't think the drs. realize how much anxiety we all go through during the "wait".

Wow...I wish I had the big gifts all bought. I really think I ought to get started on Christmas shopping but it's hard to find the motivation and the money to do it..lol.

Try to relax...I know easier said than done. But what are you going to do differently today that you wouldn't have done tomorrow? Probably nothing so try to relax and not dwell. Take a bath or do something just for yourself that helps you to relax.

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Recipe: Sausage- Sweet Potato Bake

Sunday, November 09, 2008

from the Fix and Forget About It Lightly cook book
Makes 6 servings
ideal slow-cooker size: 4 quart

SAUSAGE-SWEET POTATO BAKE

1/2 lb. lean sausage, cut in 1/4 - 1/2" slices
3 medium sized sweet potatoes, peeled and sliced thin
4 medium sized apples, peeled and cut in chunks
1 TBSP sugar
2 TBSP flour
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 - 1/2 cup water

Brown sausage in nonstick skillet, drain.
Layer sweet potatoes, apples and sausage in slow cooker sprayed with nonfat cooking spray.
Combine remaining ingredients. Pour over all.
Cover. Cook on low 6-7 hours or on high 3-4 hours.

Per serving: 230 calories, 38 g carbs, 7 g fat, 4 g protein, 5 g fiber

Note: To allow for more even cooking of the ingredients, slice the sweet potatoes thin and the apples in thicker chunks. The apples cook soft faster than the potatoes.

(I made this yesterday, turned out good!)

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MARTHA-ANN 11/10/2008 3:47AM

    This sounds so yummy I'm going to make it tonight...I'll let you know how it went emoticon

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CAROLYN0107 11/9/2008 2:08PM

    Sounds wonderful!

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The effects of stress

Saturday, November 08, 2008

I was reading an article online about the effects stress has on your mind and body; I could relate to so much of it! I am beginning to see now that the stress of working is off my shoulders, that I was probably suffering from depression too. I'm glad I got out when I did, before my health suffered any more.

I was able to fall asleep last night without having to take my Ambien, but I still only slept 6 hours, but I am not feeling too bad now except for the shoulder and arm pain. I know the side effects of that stress accumulated over time, and they are not going to all go away overnight even though I am out of that sitiuation. And part of it is anxiety I am sure with the waiting for the bone scan results.

I got the info packet today from the pain clinic and a letter from the doctor I'll be seeing there on Tuesday. It sounds like just the kind of place I need. They don't just use one doctor and one treatment, they use a team approach and use whatever options will help you. Besides medications, they also use psychological and physical therapy to treat the pain, and also biofeedback; that is something I have wanted to look into but have never done.

They also state you need to bring someone to drive you to the first appointment, as some of the treatment may involve mild sedatives, and to plan to be there for up to 2 hours for the first visit. I am looking forward to getting some answers as to the cause of my pain, and I am open to trying what the doctor suggest. I haven't done anything in the way of exercise for at least 2 weeks now, and I want to get back on track with that also, so I will ask about the best way to approach that without causing further injury.

I am taking one day at a time, and I know with each day, things will be better.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MDTWEETY 11/9/2008 7:47PM

    Hi there! I'm sorry you've been stressed and in pain. I hope things get better very soon and that you are able to determine the cause of your pain. Stress absolutely affects your health in many different ways, so it's great that you recognized that you needed to make some changes. Take care, and I hope everything goes well. It sounds like you will be going to a great place. I am a big fan of doctors who are open to many different approaches instead of just prescribing drugs and sending you on your way. All the best to you. I'll be thinking of you. emoticon

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KIMUSH23 11/8/2008 10:48PM

    Hey There...

No need to thank me...that is what friends are for!

emoticonSparkendously Your Sparkpeople Friend emoticon

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TERJEGOLD 11/8/2008 3:48PM

    This pain center sounds like such a wealth of possible information and help. I do so hope it works perfectly for you.

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