Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Ticking the days off

No more Wednesday treatments. Happy day. 4 left. The end is in sight. Not thrilled about any treatment. But I'm making the lab technicians laugh as I walk in. Today I let them know "today is my last Wednesday"... One of my favorite technicians always says as she leaves me, "Won't be long." If she's not there that day I say it to myself. She's seen me through my radiation treatment for the cervical cancer, breast cancer, and now lymph nodes... kind woman. Another one used to say to me "stay still" during the breast cancer treatment. She doesn't say that anymore. I do not BUDGE or even breath more than shallow breaths once they're done writing on me, adjusting me, rolling me, positioning me just right. I'm honestly freaked out about moving a smidge at all because I don't want that radiation going anywhere wrong. Bad enough where it hits now.

Pretty drained/tired but still enjoying work. Don't feel like I'm overdoing things, just is annoying to get up in the mornings.... but I've never been a morning person. The end of the work week is tougher for me, more talking with some classes. Adjusted my lessons with some groups this week so that I don't talk as much and am LOVING my decision. Nice to have students back to independently exploring literature. Will add back technology projects and research soon... less talk from me... I did finish reading aloud one of my favorite books today with my son's class- read Love that Dog by Sharon Creech to them. I never tire of this book. I have most of it memorized. I adored the conversations once I was done about how the students felt about the book, cared about the character, how they enjoyed the entries in the book, how they followed the storyline... (they just finished an inquiry unit on the arts, connects to novels in verse perfectly)...  My favorite moment was chatting with one group of kids about how they loved Sharon Creech's book Heartbeat which they read for Battle of the Books this year and another group of kids came and told me they loved Walk Two Moons and then another group begged me to get Hate that Cat- the sequel to Love that Dog for the library (shocked I didn't buy it already)... Oh to love an author and have a little money left in my book budget to fulfill kids' wishes!
I received the most beautiful, supportive letter from Sharon about a month ago that really touched my heart... she's such a wonderful, thoughtful person. Have opened/read the letter many times since receiving it. It is like looking at a piece of art, lifts my spirits. Love that I can connect with her and other fantastic authors online... such a lucky person I am...

Enjoyed actually getting to treatment early today because of a lovely car ride from a friend and immediately going to treatment early and heading home at a decent time. Especially appreciated the bonus of meeting up with my kiddo on the minibus on the way home. Fun to catch up with him at the end of the school day. He was thrilled.

My good friend sent me this post I found quite helpful for thinking about future scans and stopping myself from worrying... She always sends the best advice:
10 Tips for Coping with Scanxiety:

This blog post upset and inspired me simultaneously: "As I lay dying":

Two more treatments this week, two more work days... Next week, last two treatments and then some recovery...

Enjoying each day for the gift it is, sometimes zoning out a little more but pacing myself best I can.
Thanks for journeying all...

Monday, February 23, 2015

And then she said...

Decided to type a little bit.
I'm not shy. I used to be, not so much so now. I find teaching/learning opportunities all over the place, don't you?

I had the lovely opportunity to teach about kindness and manners today.
"Please don't point and me and yell 'Woah!', instead, could you please say 'Mrs. Alvarez, you surprised me with this hair change.'"
"Excuse me, when I say 'Good morning' and you don't say anything and just giggle to your friend as you go by, I think you're laughing at me. Instead, could you say, 'Mrs. Alvarez, I'm noticing your hair is different' or 'Good morning' please?"

"Mrs. Alvarez, what did you DO to your HAIR?!"
"1. Yes, my hair is different. 2. It is colored different. 3. It is rude to interrupt, can you see I'm running a battle here?"
- battle of the books competitions began today, always tough to see teams losing but love seeing everyone stocking up and reading more books!!

"Mrs. Alvarez."
"Is this your hair?"
"Did you color it?"
"Were you wearing a wig before this?"
(This was my favorite dialogue, straightforward, honest, and moved on with things quickly.)

One sweetie walked up to me, "You changed your hair, it looks like my grandma's hair now!" I thought to myself, you've got a cool grandma then... but also gave her a look like, seriously?!

Only one student asked, "Seriously, what is going on with your hair, can you explain to me, please?" - I handed her the book Nowhere Hair - love that picture book, so thoughtfully written- during the lunch since I was running a battle and couldn't chat, told her it was a similar situation to mine... She's a caring sweetie. Shall chat with her more soon.

Some kids gave me huge smiles.
Some gave me wide-eyed shocked looks but then smiled and said "Hi"...
Other kids came up and said they loved my new style and color.
My colleagues were beautifully supportive and kind and I appreciate them to bits.

Think it will take at least this week to muddle thru the confused looks and conversation. I do have 700 students to see eventually... I only saw around 220 today, maybe a few more... Now WHAT will happen if my hair all falls out with the last 2 rounds of chemo? I do have permission to wear hats... le sigh. Don't miss you wig, not a bit.

Why am I letting the PET scan loom over me like a storm cloud? I hate "what if?" things. I just want to have a few weeks off... got thru #24. 6 left. That's 1 Monday, 2 Tuesdays, 1 Wednesday, 1 Thursday, 1 Friday. One day at a time. I'm exhausted today. Already curled up in bed. Enjoyed work. Ok staff meeting. Appreciated a lovely friend walking me to the hospital and chatting with me for almost an hour when the clinic ran late, what is with them and Mondays? And glad when the minibus arrived just minutes after I went to wait for it... Not much appetite today. Forced myself to eat lunch. Ate a small portion for dinner. Hoping for better tomorrow... Shall see. Funny enough my appetite is weird and I just want bad food presently like macaroni and cheese-- from a box thank you--- and Ikea meatballs- greasier the better, thanks... yep. I know what it would do to my body. Nope I'm holding back, mostly. Yep, I will eat mostly unhealthy crap if that's what it takes to get food in my body. Shall see!

Thanks for journeying with me... was brave today, was slightly scared, and did I mention I adore my colleagues for their supportive conversations and then other topic discussions as well? Grateful...

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Going to work...

Days are slow going.
Enjoyed many off although I often felt slightly guilty through the week that I wasn't more fun, wasn't organizing play dates, and was leaving the brunt of everything- cooking, shopping, dog walking, kiddo entertaining... to my husband. He's wonderful. Just wish it was a better balance but appreciate what he's done picking up the pieces. He's told me in his own way to keep up what I'm doing to stay positive and work on kicking cancer out of my body. Don't think all of my practices with essential oils, Chinese herbal medicine that grosses me out each time I drink it, qi gong practices, yoga and such are completely understood but boy do I feel complete support of everything I'm doing in this journey to keep strong and get rid of cancer.

Going to work without a wig.
Been looming.
Started making up a chant about it.
Silly I know. But there's my brain.

Inspired by - We're going on a bear hunt...

I'm going to work wigless, it's gonna be a big one, I'm not scared.
Can't avoid it, can't ignore it, just gonna push through it,
one day at a time....
-Stop- that's where I'd like to stop for now.

Grateful I got through a few commitments I was concerned about over the past week. Felt good to keep promises. Didn't accomplish everything I'd hoped to over the past week, especially with some professional reading I wanted to get through... Shall see what I get through over the next few weeks. It took me a while to read a book for one commitment and after I finished that I started this terrible book that I promised one of my students I'd read ages ago... I really, really don't like it. I can see why kids do though... I think. So, to clear the bad taste out of my mouth from the horrible book I had to read a few book treasures for future book reviews. Loved them, just like I knew I would. Shall be finishing that terrible book tonight. It actually has three stories in one book. Only going to torture myself with one of them. Will be happy to return it to the library and move on to other books instead... (So sorry to my Enid Blyton friends, I really tried, really. I just don't like her style and I feel quite disconnected the whole time I reading the book... sigh.)

Read this article about the food industry and found it thoroughly disturbing and simultaneously enlightening...

As always, thanks for journeying with me. Probably will be quiet this week as I tackle many days of activities and commitments and treatment...  one day at a time...

Friday, February 20, 2015

What you get used to

I was thinking about what I've grown accustomed to.
Here's a list of what I've adjusted to, hoping so hard that others never have to deal with this.

1.  Going to doctors. Frequently.
2.  Blood draw- used to needles, even able to look when the needles go into my veins.
3.  Reading blood analysis charts
4.  Lack of energy, fatigue.
5.  Change. I'm a much better adapter to change and surprises. I think.
6.  Visiting the hospital. Walking to the hospital. Waiting at the hospital.
7.  Talking about cancer.
8.  Explaining situations and avoiding topics.
9.  Scheduling juggling for appointments, lab tests, etc. Note- I always was good at time management though... just a different layer into the days.
10. Dietary changes: no sugar, etc.
11. Medication to address symptoms, over and over again.
12. Working to finesse a chemo brain into letting me chat with others, sometimes feels like I have ADD and simultaneously forgot half my vocabulary.

I've had a few days of quiet time with a patient husband and son. We enjoyed going out to a carnival with a few tickets a friend passed our way but by the time we got home, I went back to bed to rest and recover for hours. I started to get those heartburn pains which blow, I feel for those who have to deal with heartburn on a regular basis, it does sort of feel like a heart attack at first. Medication will be taken soon to help me out. It was nice to get out and about though. Enjoying the time with my family. Even those snuggle times with my sweet dog. Noticing her age... there were fireworks tonight and she didn't even blink twice. In the past, I would have been putting on her thundershirt and calming her shaking, trembling body. Poor thing's hearing is fading, sight as well... but she's still a perky and happy and a pretty easygoing loving dog...

Getting #8 done tomorrow and then 5 treatments next week and 2 the next and then a break for my poor body for a little while... anticipating some down time...

Found this study on chemo brain is just fascinating, really appreciated the references to qigong as a helpful tool to dealing with chemo... I agree.

Thanks for keeping up with me on this journey...

Happy Chinese New Year!

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Ok Days Holiday Break

Grateful for time at home, rest time, nap time.
Got thru three days of treatment, 8 to go. One coming this Saturday which is odd but there's adaptation for Chinese New Year.
Looking forward to getting back into routines next week. Five treatment days in a row and then two more the following week.
Saw my oncologist today. He's reassuring. Wasn't as impressed with my weight gain as I was excited... but of course I lost 4 pounds 1 1/2 weeks before and only gained back one. I told him "I worked hard to gain that pound!"
He said I'm doing remarkably well. Happy with my blood tests, kidney function and more. A relief.
The week of the last two radiation treatments I have to get a lung x-ray to see if my lungs were damaged by the treatment, oh boy. Then I get a "break" from treatments for around 3 weeks. Then I have to get a PET scan again to get another baseline check... for some reason I didn't expect to need to have another PET scan til June, sigh. Then based on checks I'll find out about the last two rounds of chemo/time plan. Might be right after we return from Bali. Will see.
I'm working hard to stay positive and hopeful. Still talking to the tumor. Asking it to die, shrink, quit growing, and more...
I'm tired of the pain I've begun to feel in my back, pretty sure from radiation. It was weird to move my tongue and feel pain for the first time. It doesn't hurt to swallow. Just sucks to cough.
Feeling tired but napping is helpful. Kiddo is patient with me which is good. Trying to make special time with him outside of our evening reading time.
Certainly feels good to leave the apartment without something covering my head. A relief.
Had fun visiting with friends yesterday at an anniversary party but I realized how many students were at this get together... more than I expected. One student looked at me, giggled and went and whispered to her other little friends. Another student just looked at me with huge wide eyes and I said "I know, my hair is different, right?" She said "Yeah." Kids will adapt. I certainly have.
Grateful that my husband is getting some things sorted for us... especially planning out our Bali trip. Fun to make plans together. Good to have things to look forward to.

Wishing readers well. Many thanks for journeying with me.
Enjoyed looking at these and sniffing the delicious smell.
Not even tempted to eat one bite anymore, feel like I've come so far.
Happy Anniversary to two good caring friends! :)

Monday, February 16, 2015

Peeking over the shadow

What I can look up at during lunch duty at school...
Bauhinia tree
20/30 done 10/30 left. Brain always goes to chemo after thinking about radiation but I guess this is natural. Will celebrate the days in between.
Been thinking about life...
How I keep thinking that I'm a shadow of myself... can tell I'm hitting that fatigued state that I hit during the last two rounds of radiation. I remember being annoyed with myself the past two times but this time I'm working to be patient and loving with myself.
If I have to be a shadow of myself, I need to try to be the best shadow of myself. What do I like most about myself? Where do I direct my energy? Why should I dedicate any time for worry or anger that could be focused on love and support?
Working to think out activities... I'm excited  that we've changed our plans and now are able to have tickets to move home to the US in July and also visit Bali. We're going there for Spring Break/Easter holiday. Very happy and curious to see what we get to do. I'm slightly sad to not get home over the coming holiday but since we're moving home, it feels wise to travel cheaply and adventure a little more in Asia.
Have focused this month on sharing my sense of humor with others... making children laugh? a treasure. Making my son laugh? HAPPY day. Hearing my husband laugh? warms my heart... When I actually laugh aloud? Rare. I usually laugh in my head.

Here's something that made me laugh aloud recently:
I was chatting with some of my older students during their lunch break in the library the other day. One reader was holding a book I adore (and actually even mentioned here before) - Because of Anya by Margaret Peterson Haddix- the book is about a girl who has alopecia areata- losing all hair. Talked with the girl and others about how I cut/donated my hair to Locks of Love in the past. One student said to me: "That's quite funny Mrs. Alvarez because some students were saying that you were wearing a wig but instead you've donated your hair for a wig!" I said to him, "I did that a long long time ago... Hmm." Later I chuckled and chuckled about this...

I haven't talked about wearing a wig with any of the kids. But I do have permission to wear a hat at school now. Quite comfortable when I have a hat on... Shall see. I do know that this past Friday I told myself that I no longer would wear the wig to school. Hoping to not place it back on my head, shall see. Enough about wigs and hair.

Little baby eyelashes are starting to grow out now. Once again I had that thought at first, "huh, thought I washed off my makeup last night. Oh, that's little hairs growing out!"
Going to start writing lists again to prepare for the July move. When to provide notices, pack, mail boxes, deal with paperwork, and more...

So grateful for this break from work.... Long naps and sleeping til a normal hour is just beautiful to enjoy. Makes days go by and treatments a little bearable.

Interesting information on mushrooms that can prevent cancer here in this article, a lovely friend sent it my way...

Getting through the days... one at a time.

Thanks for journeying with me...

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Day by Day

I'm here.
Appreciating life.
Taking things day to day.
Grateful for thoughtful conversations, fun times, teaching and reading aloud time, learning opportunities...
Finding places to laugh, even in serious moments, even if I'm only laughing inside.
Happy to have a holiday for more time to rest and recover, spend time with family, relax with my dog.
Looking ahead and planning my future a little.
Staying positive, hopeful, and smiling.
Ignoring pain for the most part, thank goodness for a high tolerance.
Making others smile.
Making kids laugh.
Appreciate every day.
I'm here.

Just taking things quietly at the present moment. Hitting the halfway mark on Monday with radiation was a relief. Did a loud WOO HOO when I got off the Tomotherapy table. Knowing at this point I only have 12 to go is bearable but also a little intimidating. Not letting myself fret but have medicine on hand as side effects could rise. Taking things as requested by my doctor.

Attended an essential oils workshop, learned a little more, appreciated being around kind folk of CanSurvive (CancerLink support group)... Was slightly disappointed that nothing really related to cancer in the workshop, more just about the basics which was just fine, also had my hopes though...  Looking forward to appointments I've scheduled in the next week and also those days with absolutely NOTHING planned. Happy to have that gift of time coming.

Coughing still sucks but I've mostly found my voice again and can enjoy classes.
Pain still is there like a little tiny brick nestled in between my lungs but not as terrible as I expected.

Friends have been giving me rides to treatment, so grateful. Going in and not being exhausted and out of breath is a gift.
My sister's blog posts are a little punch of energy that I think about when the CT scan goes at the beginning of every treatment. Then I silently talk to the radiation and the cancer cells and my heart, lungs, etc. about how things will get better, how cancer cells can just let go and die already, and more. Relieved to have breathing exercises that stop me from coughing during treatment.
Proud of my kiddo who had an art exhibition with all his classmates. Appreciated getting to listen to him and his classmates talk about what they learned with their unit of inquiry. Proud of my boy for his enthusiasm and excitement in learning- my little smart sponge.
Listening to one of the best audiobooks I've enjoyed in a while- As You Wish- Inconceivable Tales from The Making of The Princess Bride by Cary Elwes - brilliant... but I'm quite partial to The Princess Bride...

Happy days to all.
Thanks for journeying.

Appreciated this flower during my recess duty...
blooms in the middle of winter here in Hong Kong.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Dog and Hair and other mind meanderings

 My Dulcie dog is snoring next to me. I adore her. I did learn something though. I lied to myself, I lied to others. Dulcie is actually 14.5 years old, not 13 (I feel like I've lost 1.5 years of life with her) oops. I honestly knew this, I think. She's going to turn 15 right after we move back to Oregon. Oh boy.
Getting older is the pits sometimes, can't believe my girl is over 100 already. I'd love to get older though, wouldn't complain at all. Love life...

So, hair. It is growing out. I learned from many others who share their experiences that your bangs area is the slowest one to grow out... sigh. That's where all my grey is. Shall see.
Wig. I'm wearing it, still doesn't feel like me, still flops in my eye and makes me miss my curls...
I've talked with a few good friends who have honestly told me about when they quit wearing their wigs and went public. Personally, I know my hair is long enough now that I could be free of the wig. I know it. I'm just not ready for the shock I'd give my students.
1. Because it is so darn short
2. Because it is so darn grey
3. Because it is so darn straight
4. Because the darn chemo might make it fall out again after radiation...

Shall see.
My kiddo took a picture of it. (One friend took a weekly picture of her hair to see the progress of the grow out. It was interesting. Appreciate her trust and support...)
I know I need to wait 3-6 months after chemo before I can dye my hair... so says websites and such.

This also was a little more helpful... more about natural hair dye: (I just want to be brown, no bleaching, etc... sure wouldn't mind trying out henna, hmm.)

I went to an organic shop and picked up henna hair dye and will try it out sometime. Talked with my oncologist and he said he didn't think I should waste money dyeing my hair since it will possibly fall out again with the two other rounds of chemo... sigh. Told me he was concerned about damaging my hair- (MORE than chemo has damaged my hair?!) Not like I'm bleaching it... ;)
Shall see.

I'm almost half way thru radiation. Day 15 on Monday. I can feel it. Honestly. In my chest it is like a little ball of pain. Hopefully that pain is all the cancer cells dying. I really appreciate the weekend. My oncologist prescribed me with three more medicines- one is acid reducer- returning to taking this after being free of it for 4 weeks. He said it is to protect my esophagus...  I somewhat find it funny that on the back of the box there a "poison" sign?!
Then he prescribed me with Sucrate gel that I'm supposed to take 1 hour before I eat- sigh... the timing of that couldn't be worse- shall see how I do- it is to coat my throat down thru my stomach to help me out if I get worse- don't have to take it yet... He also prescribed me this cough syrup called Comephen- there's codeine in the ding dong stuff, not at all excited. Plus sugar is part of the ingredients of the syrup. The coughing while teaching has sucked but I'm not certain it is bad enough for me to be on codeine! Shall see. 

Loved the weekend because I enjoyed wearing a hat the whole time vs a wig... freedom- a little bit.
Enjoyed hanging out with family and friends this weekend, grateful for the time AND energy. Also appreciating yoga on Saturday mornings, good to have the class to learn in and help my body heal in... amazing how much I've back slid physically compared to my time in yoga three years ago. Working on being very patient with my body as I take the class.

While I was browsing the web I learned more about nail care, good info... almost every one of my nails lifted/separated from the nail bed up to a certain point around the beginning of December. Painful, yes. Seemed to heal though (visible still yellow/blue/green, yuck) but this is good info since I have to deal with a little more chemo:
"For home care, patients with signs of infection in separated nails can soak their fingers or toes in a solution of white vinegar and water for 15 minutes every night. It kills the bacteria and dries the areas out." -

Well, thanks for journeying with me... time is starting to fly by as I realize we're moving home in 5 months. Wow.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

So you shouldn't smoke at the hospital

I felt very outspoken as I was waiting after radiation today for the bus. (Day 12, 18 left to go. When I look at a calendar, I have less than a month's time left now. Next Monday I'll be half way done.)
I was wearing my mask (as always) and waiting patiently... listening to an audiobook (very humorous memoir called I don't know what you know me from by Judy Greer) and suddenly a waft of cigarette smoke infiltrated my nose. Immediately I turned and looked at the people behind me... no cigarettes. Looked over to the opposite side of the waiting area, there he was- this French guy who came out earlier talking loudly on his phone... I yelled out, "PLEASE DON'T SMOKE." then pointed to myself "CANCER!"  He said sorry and moved a little away from the waiting area and closer to the 'No Smoking or Possible Fine of $50,000 sign'. Security walked out to talk with him and he quickly put out the cigarette and left the area.

Now. I hate cigarettes. Always have. I learned to hold my breath at an early age around them. My mom was a good influence on me for my ultimate hatred of all drugs (I'm happily an innocent one who never tried anything, was a member of Students Against Substance Abuse and other clubs in high school.) I blame cigarettes for my beloved grandmother's death too young. I was so proud when my dad finally quit his battle with cigarettes while I was in college (he never smoked in the house)... I also was tremendously proud when my brother in law quit smoking, but don't think I ever told him...

Since I was initially diagnosed this third round of cancer with lung cancer I totally was freaking out about cigarettes even more so than usual. You see, everywhere around our apartment complex are cigarette smokers. Seriously, walk down the steps, smokers, stand in line for the bus- smokers, walk down the street - smokers... Hong Kong has a terrible cigarette problem. I'm absolutely shocked at how many people smoke. And I worry for those people. I worry for everyone getting poisoned my second hand smoke. I am also personally concerned about my son who has adjusted to mom being a nutcase and he holds his breath too at times... We're up pretty high so I don't worry as much about cigarettes in the apartment (but we do have air purifiers). I will look forward to walking into clean air in Oregon though when we move home in July.

Did I mention that when we were in the Philippines there was a freaky moment when we were getting off a ferry and my husband went to get our luggage and my son and I were catching up to him and a person smoking actually touched his cigarette to my son's arm? Freaked my poor kiddo out (and me) and made my husband furious. Kiddo's burn healed quick, I had quick ointment to pop on him, etc... but man do I hate cigarettes.

The hospital is a place where I make that simple assumption that I should be able to breathe easily without worry of cigarette smoke. But. When I walked out of the Tomotherapy room to go change into my street clothes, I was quite surprised to have a breath of cigarettes waiting for me- there's an outside door, guess some of the people took a cigarette break there... so when I waited for the bus and was assaulted? I wasn't shy.

It has been an ok week so far. A wonderful friend came and picked me up and stayed with me on Monday for treatment and the clinic was running 20 minutes behind! We enjoyed the chance to sit and chat for a while and I was so grateful to sit in her beautiful car and get a ride home instead of ride the bus. Tuesday I had yoga nidra and received a ride to treatment, so grateful. Wednesday (today) I got a ride from a wonderful colleague who offered at lunch... appreciated that chance to chat with her as well.

I'm still enjoying qi gong, such a healthy practice and I find that the breathing exercises are helping me out with the random spastic coughing attacks I've had over the past three days. The main woman I chat with at the clinic reminded me that they are radiating the center of my respiratory system so coughing is a side effect that can be tampered with medication only, not water... will ask my oncologist about this on Saturday. Acid reflux is another side effect I'm watching for but gratefully not experiencing... yet.
Teaching and coughing don't mix too well. Reading aloud a novel and coughing don't work well together either. Sigh. Still enjoying work though. Having fun planning out literacy week, author visit, book character day, and more presently. Thank goodness the computer system at work is back on track. Relieved for that...

Enough brain dumping for today....
Thanks for journeying with me...

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Getting pet

My kiddo has found my hair so soft that he finds it fun to pet now. Told me that he feels happy when he sees it growing out because he thinks it means I'm getting better...
This morning I had these thoughts (after a little extra sleep in- didn't feel quite myself so indulged in more time...).
"What is going on? I know I washed off my makeup last night. Why does it look like the eyebrow pencil is still there? *Move closer to the mirror.* Oh my goodness, those are little baby eyebrow hairs growing in! I had no idea I had so many eyebrow hairs before. I've missed you little ones..."
So, I'm taking it as another small step, eyebrow hairs are starting to grow in a little bit. Some aren't at all. Shall see how long/if they come back. Still using the eyebrow pencil.
Eyelashes? Eh. Shall see.
Hair? Most areas I'm noticing it growing in. It is soft. It is not curly. So I keep telling myself more might be coming.
It has been a pretty good weekend. Enjoyed family time, friend time, and the only time I didn't enjoy was when my computer completely died on me... I had no backup of stuff. Um. Oops. Quite upset. All my writing, gone. All my family home videos, gone. All my music, gone (sob- might have stored favorite cds in the US, I hope.) Oh well. My own fault. Nice people at Apple Genius Bar tried to rescue files with no success. Told me that I could go to a specialty recovery store and pay money for my computer to be restored/files found... um no. Just wipe the darn thing clean. And so he did, asking permission many steps along the way. Sigh.
Had a little pity party and now am thinking about the three manuscripts that I felt good enough to start sending to agents- but hadn't... rewriting is in order! Hopefully for the better. The other manuscripts are gone gone gone... didn't even print some. Sigh. New plans for the future. For now just dealing with loading applications and letting go.

Quick journal for tonight.
Continuing the journey, thanks for coming along...