Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Horses. Pulmonologists. Beaches. MRI’s. Sniveling.

How ‘bout if we take a little ol’ break from cancer for just a minute and talk about horses instead?

Wild horses. Wild mustangs on a lonely beach in North Carolina.

And why, you might ask, am I suddenly rattling on about wild horses?

Well, because last Friday, some wonderful website friends, Cindy (from California) and Chlorita (from the Raleigh area), were vacationing nearby and offered to take Steve, Sarah and I on a Wild Horse Tour.

About 45 minutes north of where we live is a beach that is only accessible by four wheel drive vehicles. It is secluded and wild and hard to get to and people actually build houses and live there. (Which sorta boggles my brain.)

Friday afternoon, we spent two hours with a guide, driving on the beach just a few feet from the ocean and then crawling up and down sand dunes and weaving in and out of all sorts of wild terrain. At times it almost felt like we were on the moon or in the middle of the Sahara because the landscape was so untamed looking and there were so few signs of civilization. The whole purpose of these tours is for people to catch glimpses of the wild mustangs who have roamed that area for years and, while we did see some of the horses, I was more entranced by the whole adventurous feel of just being in those types of surroundings.

As a point of interest, wealthy people rent 25 bedroom/25 bath homes out there (twenty to thirty thousand dollars a week) to host weddings. There is one particular house that has a chapel that seats a hundred people and the bridal party and guests all come out and stay a week and have the wedding right there; they never even have to leave the house.

Maybe when Sarah gets married, we’ll rent one of the homes. I think I saw $30,000 just lying around in my dresser drawer last night. (ha)

Anyway, it was really a wonderful adventure. Thanks Cindy and Chlorita!

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horses

horse tour cindy

My favorite sight on the trip was this sign on one of the houses that said, “No snivelling.” (To snivel means to whine or complain.) Even though they spelled “snivelling” wrong, I admired the pluck and panache’ of these red-neckish people in choosing such a delightful word. So today, if you’re tempted to whine about something just say to yourself, “NO sniveling.” And just saying that word will make you laugh.

Go ahead. Say the word aloud. Now didn’t you at smile at least a little?

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Okay, let’s move on from sniveling and wild horses to cancer and pulmonologists.

My pulmonology appointment went okay yesterday although I was slightly alarmed when the nurse took my blood pressure and said, “It’s 100 over 30. Is that normal for you?”

I just about fell out of the chair. Thirty?? Is that normal for anybody? I asked her to take it again on the other arm and it was 100 over 50. So if I average the two together, my bottom number is forty. I have never had a BP number so low in my life but they didn’t seem overly concerned so I guess I’m not in danger of keeling over anytime soon. (Although with all the stress I’ve been under, I would have thought it would have been abnormally high instead.)

Unfortunately, I didn’t find out till after I got there that this particular doctor has two offices—one on the beach which he goes to once a week and one in another city which is his home office. The office on the beach did not have any of the pulmonary function testing equipment so I had to make an appointment in 10 days to go to his other office for the actual testing. (And pay another $50 co-pay. Isn’t that delightful? But no, I’m not going to snivel about it.)

So although I didn’t really get any info yesterday on how my lungs are doing, I was able to have a conversation with him about my cancer treatment. (It still feels funny to type those words.) He said that he would have no reservations about radiation being an option; he told me that the radiation beams are so focused that they would have little or no effect on my lungs.

Now if today’s MRI shows that the cancer is in more than one place, than obviously the radiation therapy would be more complicated and we might have to reconsider. But it’s a relief to know that for now, at least, the lumpectomy/radiation option is still a possibility.

I’ll leave in about an hour for the MRI; Steve’s going to stay behind and teach my class for me tonight since it’s a 4 1/2 hour round trip.

Today’s test will provide yet another piece to the treatment puzzle we’re trying to put together. Steve and I will go back to my surgeon next Tuesday to discuss the results of the MRI and to hopefully make a final decision on what treatment route to take.

I am extra, exceedingly, excruciatingly happy that after I get home tonight, I will having nothing medically related to deal with for at least five days. Well, except to read tons of books and literature about cancer and all its treatments. Which is just a tad overwhelming at times. And sometimes even more than a tad.

But I’m not going to snivel.

7 Had Something To Say (Just click here!):

Lyndsay said...

I'm glad you were able to have such an interesting adventure before all this yuckiness started for you.

And you know what? Sometimes we all need to snivel. I say - take 10 minutes every day to snivel and get all the miserable-ness out, then take a deep breath and start smiling again!

MaryH said...

Praying for safe travels for you today, Becky and for only one small, tiny spot of cancer on the MRI. I hope you find a thrift shop or candy shop along the way and have a few moments to browse. I am glad you will have several days free of doctors appointments to spend time with your college dude and Sarah. I especially enjoyed your post about the wild horses (as the horse loving/horse owning person that I am). Now, back to work for me and no "sniveling" allowed - and that could be difficult to do here! Prayers.

Anonymous said...

Main Entry:
sniv·el

Pronunciation:
\ˈsni-vəl\

Function:
intransitive verb

Inflected Form(s):
sniv·eled or sniv·elled; sniv·el·ing or sniv·el·ling

Etymology: Middle English, from Old English *snyflan; akin to Dutch snuffelen to snuffle, snuffen to sniff

Date: 14th century
1 : to run at the nose
2 : to snuff mucus up the nose audibly : snuffle
3 : to cry or whine with snuffling
4 : to speak or act in a whining, sniffling, tearful, or weakly emotional manner

randybethmo said...

Wow! That adventure reminded me of the movie Nights in Rodanthe... all the scenery and that. sigh...oh to be somewhere quiet and serene looking with a bunch of wild horses that could wander or run by....

Okay, back to the real world... Hope you have a fantastic day with only a "small speed bump" called cancer talk to run over as you find thrift shops and lots of chocolate along your travels...

May God keep you closely hugged today!

Random said...

The Canadians among us (that is, me) would like, please, to stand up in defence of spelling "snivelling" with two Ls. Also words like "labelling" and "travelling." Perhaps the inhabitants of that particular house were sympathetic souls.
That said, I think your wild horse adventure looks amazing. It's the kind of thing I used to read books about when I was younger (gyahaha, that must sound so ridiculous coming from someone my age).
I wish you the best of luck with your upcoming results... we're all hoping for the best possible news.

Anonymous said...

I like the new motto:
No sniveling or
no snivelling, whichever one prefers.
Think I'll adopt it too!
Jan

Anonymous said...

to Randybethmo....even though Nights in Rodanthe had the wild horses, there are actually no wild horses on that part of the Outer Banks..(Rodanthe)...the horses are all north of Corolla....and Rodanthe is way south about 40 miles...but it still was a nice addition to the movie... :)
We rode up that part of the beach in my nephew's truck a couple of Christmas's ago and saw some wild ponies...we had one walk right up to us. It is so beautiful up there. Which reminds me of a story....my great-niece was sitting in my lap in the truck...and Dave had an "oldies" station on the radio...I was singing along...Taylor looked around at me and said..."you know songs that aren't Christian?" (my hubby is a minister)...I said, "well, yes of course"...she said, "Does Uncle Richard know??" We all cracked up laughing.."Yes, he knows that I know "secular" songs..." and he is ok with that.. :)
But I digress....
Becky, still thinking of you and praying for you. I am still hoping to pop in on you some day when we are down there...
HUGS - Buff