Archive for the Deep Stuff Category

It is what it is.

Posted in Deep Stuff, Stuff about me. on January 6, 2011 by Nutsy Fagan

I got my results yesterday and I tested positive for the BRCA1 mutation.  It wasn’t a surprise as I knew in my heart all along this was the case.  The anxiety leading up to knowing was worse than anything else.  Now I have knowledge and a plan and that equals power.  What this means is that I am at a much higher risk for ovarian and breast cancer than your average bear.  As a result, I am going to have an oophorectomy, which is the removal of my ovaries and fallopian tubes.  This can be performed laparoscopically which would be a cinch, but of course, I’ve had two c-sections and a tubal ligation which means that is probably out for me.  Why would it be easy for me???  Ha ha.  Instead, I’ll have open abdominal surgery, like a c-section.  Fortunately, I got in to see my sister’s surgeon, Richard Barakat, who is the chief of gynecologic surgery (and just about everything else) at Sloan Kettering.  The only reason I get to go to him is because I’m BRCA1 positive and my sister is his patient.  Not the kind of “in” one usually wants, but hey, I’ll take it.  He’s the man.  I’ll also be intensely monitored for breast cancer at Sloan going forward.  Every six months I will have mammograms/MRI’s alternating.  They call it a “breast surveillance” plan.  So official sounding, isn’t it?  So I have my appointments made and we shall see when I can have the surgery.   The sooner, the better in my mind.  I’d like to be fully recovered by April when we go to Florida.  I certainly don’t want this done after that.  Summer will be here soon enough and I need to be at the beach instead of at the hospital or home recuperating!

For comic relief, or to add insult to injury, we had a good chuckle over my mother yesterday.  After I told her my results, she called my sister Cece and said, “Oh!  Did you hear?!?!  It’s a VERY exciting day!!!  Barbara got her results!!!”  Ummmmm….yeah, Mom…..whooo hooo!  Can’t wait for surgery!  Let’s get some champagne…..aye yi yi.  She’s totally gone, so there is no harm, no foul here.  She can’t remember from one minute to the next what is going on, so we just had to laugh.

My goal from now until surgery is to get in fighting shape.  The more fit I am, the faster my recovery.  So back on the healthy eating plan and continue exercising.  I’m hoping I can have the surgery before the end of February.  That would be best case scenario.  But we all know how that goes….”the best laid plans…..”  *sigh*


And we’re off!

Posted in Deep Stuff, Stuff about me. on January 4, 2011 by Nutsy Fagan

Kids went back to school yesterday.  Larry was off, which was really nice.  We lounged in the morning and then went out to lunch and walked around Babylon for a bit.  Today is back to the gym and better habits.  I’m going to have to drag my ass there, but it must be done.  We have Florida in April and my niece’s wedding in August, aside from just needing to be healthy!

I’m a bit anxious as I am going into Sloan tomorrow for the results of my genetic testing.  I’m not afraid and I know I can handle what comes, but it’s all I can think about.  If I am BRCA1 positive, like my sister Jeanie, then my chances of ovarian cancer rise dramatically.  To prevent this, I will have a hysterectomy asap.  My chances of breast cancer rise dramatically as well, however Sloan does not recommend mastectomy.  Thank God, because I won’t be having that.  You can have everything else, thank you very much.  Should I be positive, after the hysterectomy, I will be screened at Sloan for breast cancer every six months alternating MRI’s with mammograms.  I am completely comfortable with this.  Breast cancer is highly curable when caught early.  Ovarian is not and is nearly impossible to detect until Stage 3.  I guess what bothers me most is that if I’m positive then there’s a 50/50 chance my children will be positive and that is something they’ll have to deal with that when they’re older and have children, mostly my Gracie.  I no can like that.  It’s a 50/50 shot and it is what it is.  Either way, I know that my family and I will be fine.  So that is what I should be concentrating on, right?  Uh huh.  I just want to know and move on.  Tomorrow, tomorrow.

Christmas time is here…..

Posted in Deep Stuff, Stuff about me. on December 23, 2010 by Nutsy Fagan

Happiness and cheer
Fun for all that children call
Their favorite time of the year

Snowflakes in the air
Carols everywhere
Olden times and ancient rhymes
Of love and dreams to share

Sleigh bells in the air
Beauty everywhere
Yuletide by the fireside
And joyful memories there

Christmas time is here
We’ll be drawing near
Oh, that we could always see
Such spirit through the year
Oh, that we could always see
Such spirit through the year…

Ah, yes, one of my favorite tunes backed up by Vince Guaraldi.  The time is upon us!!!  I must say, I have tons of spirit this year.  It’s a meaningful Christmas.  My sister’s cancer counts are AMAZING.  That in itself is a miracle.  She’s feeling good and will be in my house for Christmas!!!  With their new puppy Lexie, Finney’s sister.  Awesome.

Then, we received more amazing news yesterday:  Larry’s cousin, Mary Sue, suffered a serious stroke 20 days ago and has been intubated and in a coma until yesterday when she just opened her eyes and smiled at her mom and her daughter.  I’m overwhelmed with happiness and staggered with surprise.  This is really a miracle.  They had given up hope and were moving her to another facility….  I’m going with it all and doing the happy dance everywhere.

Larry’s home today!!  Except for Monday and Tuesday next week, he’s off until January 4th!!!  Yippee!  Laurence is home sick today – poor thing is having some tummy trouble….in the lower region.  Oy.  He’s happy though.  He’s cozy in his bed reading Harry Potter.  I think mostly he just wanted to stay home with Dad.

I have MAJOR wrapping to do today!  I also need to get to Costco, so I guess I had better get moving.  But first, my Christmas menu:

Fruit Platter
Guacamole & Chips
Red Pepper Jelly & Cream Cheese on Sea Salt Crackers (mmmmmmmm)

Filet Mignon with Bearnaisse Sauce
Balsamic & Butter Asparagus
Creamed Spinach
Gorgonzola Mashed Red Potatoes
Caesar Salad

Date Nut Torte with Fresh Whipped Cream
Coconut Cupcakes & Vanilla Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting…(photos to come – these will be decorated)

See you soon! Be Merry! Be Happy! It’s CHRISTMAS!!!!!!!!