Thursday, November 15, 2018

Answers and a Plan

Since I haven't been shy about sharing my perimenopause issues on my blog (because we should talk about it! And also my readership is limited to Kristin, EC, my Mom, Marge and Dan so its a pretty safe group...) then you know I've been having weird period issues. I skipped two a couple of months ago, but then soon after started up again and bled for 3 weeks straight! Smack in the middle I was literally hemorrhaging for 4 days. While we were in London, which was fun. So. Fun. But quite a miracle that our hotel room had a washer and dryer. That worked out well. Silver linings everywhere.

Well, it seemed like all of this craziness warranted a trip to the doctor. She did an ultrasound and found my endometrium lining was 26 mm. Instead of the usual 5 at the end of a period or even 11-15 right before your period starts. So she scheduled a biopsy to rule out cancer. Which was unsettling. I found out I don't have cancer -- Phew. It's rare. But still... I worried.

Time out for a vent: Biopsy was Tuesday. She said I should check in on Friday--that she was going to be out town but her medical assistant could give me the results if they were in. I called on Friday and the assistant said they were in. But she couldn't give me the results because my NP hadn't reviewed them first. FRUSTRATING!

I was plagued with deciphering the psychology of the assistant. Did I have cancer and the assistant didn't want to be the one to tell me? Or was she just a self-important rule-follower who forgot that a real person with real feelings was worrying? This is THE THIRD TIME I've waited for results for a biopsy and they've made me wait even though they had the answers. I would really like to revamp this about the medical world!

Monday when I called... guess what... whoever answered the phone said, "I see you called on Friday and we told you we'd get back to you when the NP had a chance to review the results. She's only been back for a day so you need to give her a little more time." I wanted to strangle her. I actually queued my Nicholas sarcastic voice and almost responded with a nasal "Ohhh Kaaaayy." But I wasn't quite that rude. Even though they were being TOTALLY rude to me!!!!

Tuesday evening on the way to the airport my NP called and told me everything was normal. But I should meet with the Gynecologist to make a plan. I met her today and really liked her! She was a great listener and together we made a "wait and see" approach and plan for my 3 conditions. I left feeling really good.

1) I'm starting birth control to try to see if we can get my hormones balanced and bleeding in check. (Totally bleeding again. I've only had a week off in 5 weeks.) We'll try that for 3 months. But if I'm still having breakthrough, then it's probably a big polyp -- biopsy indicated polyp tissue -- or the fibroid bleeding and we'll do an ablation or hysterectomy.

2) Stage 3 rectocele and stage 2 cystocele. Diagnosed and we'll address if we do anything about that after I see a GI. I've been having constant pain similar to the feeling of having a razor blade in my netherends. The pain has been worse than any of my other conditions. No hemorrhoids. No fissures. I almost wonder if its a nerve issue. (I've been doing lots of reading on the internet.) So. Also not fun. But the rectocele and cystocele really shouldn't be causing pain so that's probably not it. But if we do a hysterectomy, she thought it would be a good idea to fix both of those and rebuild my insides so they weren't falling out. Sounds like something to consider.

3) Surprisingly unrelated to the above, is the peeing problem. She got a first-hand look (literally) at my issue when diagnosing the above issues and was like... "O.K. You've got to do something about that. It's a 15 minute surgery. We do it all the time and its a cinch. You've got to get that fixed." First I'm going to Pelvic Physical therapy who may also be able to address the razor blade pain. We'll know after 3 weeks if that's working. If it is, I'll continue for 6-8 weeks. If not, I'll put that at the top of the fix list. But I have to say, pee-proof undies really do make everything better. I told her that too and she looked like she kind of wanted to shake her head and roll her eyes.

Dan said, "Women sure do have to sacrifice so much to have babies!" I wouldn't change a thing. I'm so grateful I got to be pregnant. They're worth it.


Nicholas (photo from the screen of the computer. I need a new desktop with Airdrop!)

P.S. To demonstrate the frame of mind I've been in for the past month... I just ate all of these chocolates while I've been sitting here writing this.

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Good Works

I spent the day scoping out our neighborhood looking for homes of people that still needed their leaves raked. I bought 5 dozen donuts and borrowed a bunch of rakes. Bought trash bags. At 7:00 p.m. in the pitch black dark and brisk weather, the youth and leaders divided up between age groups and went to 3 different homes to rake. We used the headlights of the cars to light up the yards and sent donuts with each group for a treat when they were done. An hour later 5 trucks were needed to load up all the bags of leaves and take them to the drop off site. The work went fast, was fun to work together and all went smoothly. It was a terrific spirit of service.

Mom and Marge's brother, Rick, is in the hospital and not responding. He had surgery for colon cancer two days ago. It went well and he was joking and talking with his girls afterward. However, the next morning the nurse found him not breathing. They resuscitated him but then he had a heart attack. Today my mom reported that it doesn't look good.

Someone took a lot of time to create this guy with the mere dusting of snow we had the other day. I'm not quite sure how they accomplished it. But I'm impressed.

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

A Day With My Sister

You know one of the many lucky things I get to enjoy in my life? Lots of frequent flyer miles. So when Dan got a postcard about a real estate conference at University of Chicago, I said, "You should go to this and I'll go too and visit Michelle!"

I haven't seen their new house yet and I couldn't wait to go and just hang out for a day! I was literally counting down the weeks! It was fun to go for a quick overnight because it didn't require any planning nor too much interruption in the Paul's lives. (Especially since I slept in on Tuesday so Michelle could have plenty of time to work on a project she needed to do for Young Women's. That was nice of me to sleep in.

Chris was also super excited about being in charge for a couple of days!

I loved seeing her home. It's so light and bright and they are so talented at decorating and doing much of the remodel work themselves. They have big windows overlooking grassy yards, trees and a lake that the kids can paddle boat or fish in. It was idyllic!

Isaac made this adirondack chair in shop class! Wow! Quite a step up from a cutting board!

Such a happy, welcoming home!
Monday Dan and I arrived just before the kids got home from school. We hung out and chatted then went out to dinner and ice cream. Back at home, while the kids did their homework, we played "Psych" -- a super fun group game on your phone.

The app asks a question and everyone makes up an answer and types it into their own phone. The answers then show up anonymously on everyone's phone and you choose your favorite one. The person with the most likes wins. Get it? Now look at how coincidentally similar the answers were for the question about me!! This is why I love being with my family! They know me so well!

Dan took an Uber to his hotel in the city to sleep and go to the conference the next day. I stayed with Michelle and we took a long walk in her beautiful neighborhood and park with Oakley, their dog, who I'm trying to figure out how we can have him and Kershaw meet!

The yummy chocolatey drink Sheree taught to Michelle who taught it to me.
We got pedicures, but then we just ran errands around town and visited a couple of her friends whom I've heard all about for YEARS and have never met! I felt like I was meeting old friends! It was so fun. At 4:30 I took an uber back to the airport to meet Dan. And just like that we were home again!

If you grew up in the 70's, you know what an amazing thing this is!
Michelle found it and bought one to give to me and Ethan was super excited to remind her about it!

I love you, Michelle and the whole Paul family!!

Sunday, November 11, 2018

Piano Recital and Funny Mia Maids

Nick's piano recital was tonight! He practiced regularly and the last couple of days practiced his songs a ton! He did great and it was fun to see him perform! He hasn't had a recital in a really long time -- ever since he started Clarinet and Saxophone. I love his confidence and poise!

Today I taught in YW. I was sharing some heartfelt experiences I had over my life where I became converted. Yes, I was teary. I tried not to be because I know it can make teens uncomfortable.  But what can I say, I cry when I feel the spirit.

My class is full of impressive girls who listen, comment, put their phones away, care about each other and I love them. But it was pretty hilarious when in the middle of me sharing an emotional experience, the sweet girl sitting right next to me whispered to another girl across the room, "Where'd you buy your socks? They're so cute!"

And that's what it's like to teach teenagers.

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Silver Linings

We've had some fun weekends with friends lately. A Jazz game last weekend with a couple we haven't been out with before but she's in my friends' breakfast group and he invests in Dan's company. They are funny and interesting and sentimental about things that are spiritual. We had a great time.

The next night we had dinner with a larger group from our ward with friends we haven't been out with socially but see a lot of at church. We saw a performance by the Tenors at Eccles. Lots of laughs again and talk about the new ward that is going to be formed in our stake and that ward boundaries will be adjusted. We could very likely be going to a different ward in a year. To me that shows how inspired the Ministering set-up is for our ward -- our ministering group are our neighbors.

Last night we went to The Scarlet Pimpernel at Hale Theater with some new friends as well -- we all had different connections to each other. It's been fun meeting new people. Dan has especially loved the new friends he's met in our new area. A lot of them are in business, like him, and he's enjoyed meeting people with so much in common.

Tonight we had dinner with the Wickham's. We are at a new stage in life where our kids do their thing and we do ours. We love it! (And so fun to see friends visiting from California!)

Nick went on a campout with friends and a few dads for an airsoft battle. They slept in tents in a remote area, ate well and played hard. He is good at thinking through what he needs, preparing and packing well. I just sit back and let him do his thing and he asks me for rides to where he needs to go to get more airsoft stuff or to check over his gear and double-check to see if he's packed everything. I love the way he does things! It's right up my alley so its easy for me to understand and relate to!

Chris had a fender bender driving the bus on his way to the football game on Friday. :-(
Actually the bus was so big, he rear ended her and took off the whole back corner of the lady's car in front of him. She was kind. He was mature. The firefighters helped bend back a corner of the bus to free his wheel so he could still drive to the game. The police officer was understanding. I thought about how car wrecks can be so much worse than they often are. I am so grateful for police and firemen who think primarily about how they can assist.

I wondered if he'd be sad, frustrated or mad. They lost the game and when we checked in with him he replied it was a bad day. Later that night when we checked in he was feeling much better. He'd talked to the insurance agent who was helpful and he was having fun at a stomp.

When he came home that night he said, "I could be mad. But instead I feel grateful that it wasn't so much worse. I could have killed her if I'd plowed straight into her." That was exactly what I'd been thinking about earlier. He had enough time to turn to not hit her directly in the back. He had the reflexes and knowledge to react. The lady he hit wasn't hurt. He wasn't hurt, nor his friend in the bus with him. He has a dad who made sure he got insurance on the bus. He has a job and savings to be able to pay for damages.

We aren't always protected from from life. But we can find so many blessings even in our challenges.

Thursday, November 08, 2018


Yesterday I was distracted. I had lots I could have been doing, but instead I surfed on the computer all day researching. Surfing is a way that modern society distracts ourselves from responsibility or emotions. Its an avoidance technique.

And can I admit something? I'd intended on reading my scriptures and saying my morning soon as I figured out this one thing on the computer. And after that I was going out to exercise. But I was in my exercise clothes all day. And I was on the computer all day. And I never went out. Or said my prayers or read my scriptures. Yes, I was looking for particular information. But, I wasn't productive. I was trying to distract myself.

Would praying really help? It wouldn't change anything. I still had to wait. I still had to be patient. So it was easy to put on the back burner and eventually neglect.

(That evening I had to take Nick to tennis. So I did take a walk around the golf course and neighborhoods by the zoo while he was in class. I liked that.)

Today I got up and said my prayers. Then after the kids were off to school I took my walk then sat outside on the adirondack chairs and read my scriptures while leaves fell from the trees all around me. Then I got busy doing life.

I still had no more information on my problem I was researching than I did yesterday. I was still waiting to find answers. Nothing about my problem really had changed from yesterday. BUT I believe that because I took the time to pray and give my burden to the Lord, I was able to not be distracted by the burden. I was able to be patient and function and move forward.

Something as small as praying and asking for help really can make a difference. Heavenly Father is with us. He will walk by our side. But we have to ask.

"Be patient in afflictions for thought shalt have many. But endure them, for lo I am with thee, even unto the end of thy days." D&C 24:8

Wednesday, November 07, 2018

That Time of Year

Look what is happening right now!!

Christmas light installation!