Almost Heaven

No where have I every said my age. I haven’t found anyone with Cowden’s older than me. Here are some clues.

My 40th class reunion is at the end of September. I went to the class 50th birthday party. That was more than enough for me. Both of my children are over 30 and no I’m not a grandma. Our class motto was Almost Heaven Class of 77.  After high school I passed the physical and joined the Navy. After boot camp I was stationed in San Diego. I was a Navy cook at the Officers Club. Still make a good omelet.

My point with all my health issues I have a good life and I’m still here.

 

2017

2017 started with doctors appointments. I had my six month appointment with the dermatologist. He is one of my favorites doctors. The staff is very nice. Doctor knows what he is doing. They are always on time. He has become the family skin doctor.

Two Monday’s ago I saw him.  Everything was ok till he got to my right cheek. He thought it possible could be a pre cancer or possible basal cell cancer. I needed a biopsy. I’m no stranger to biopsies. The doctor is good at them. If I have basal cell cancer this would be my third cancer.

So he finishes. The answer to all my questions is “We’ll be in touch” I wait till the following Monday,  call the office back. Tuesday morning a nurse calls. Doctor talked to the pathologist. Report is he’s not sure. Doctor wants to see. Saw doctor Friday afternoon. He did another biopsy on the same site says results should be back by Wednesday at the latest. Thinks he got everything this time.  Depending on the results I might need to see another doctor for further treatment.

I know with PTEN skin cancer  I am at a higher risk for skin cancer. Every year I buy sun block but forget to use it. With my large head size I have one ball cap that fits.

Treatment for pimples in my teens included time under a sun lamp and night cream that smelled like sulfur.

This summer I will use sun block not just buy it. Hopefully there is somewhere out there that has cute wide brim hats for summer.

Most important my hope is my family, friends will make a point to use sunscreen with me.

Update

 

I just finished the snowman

img_1093I usually don’t make New Year’s Resolutions. My resolutions were mostly art related. Limit the number of exhibits I did. Be part of the Christmas exhibit in Marie’s Cafe on the square. I did both. I’m still membership chair of our local art league. Next year I would like to do more for pulmonary hypertension.

I have shortened my list of doctors by two. Said good-by to the GI doctor and my oncologist. GI doctor canceled my appointment. After talking to my PCP we decided she could take it from here. The oncologist has an ultrasound scheduled for March. After that if I need him I know where to find him. My thyroid is good enough to see him just once a year.

My PH is progressing. I am now on two PH medicines. The second one is inhaled. It comes from a specialist pharmacy in the mail and cost big bucks. We are very grateful for good insurance and Caring Voices. Caring Voices awarded me a grant for co-pays.

 

This I called Playhouse. Its made from junkmail. One of the shows I wanted to do was In The Pink. Small pictures are raffeled of for our local cancer center.

 

img_0987

My arteriouveous malformation continues to grow and give me problems. An arteriovenous malformation is arteries and veins grown together. It is no longer safe for me to have them operated on. Hopefully I won’t get another man cold and the new medicine will work.

What !!!!

The skin doctor is finishing up my appointment. He’s telling me the problem area looks great. I agree with him. Last thing I have one more spot I need checked. Silly me not a big deal, he’ll look and I get another appointment in six months.

What I think I heard him wrong. Your not sure what this is. Out comes the doctor tool, he gives a measurement to the assistant. You need a biopsy this needs to come off. Any vacation plans coming up? Do you swim? Well yes my reunion is this weekend. Ok lets schedule the biopsy after the reunion.

Dr shakes my hand and leaves. I get dressed and then think of the questions? Dr is in the hall. Yes you will have stitches for ten days and need to stay off the area. Right again after the numbing meds wear off the area will hurt. We start with scheduling my return appointment. The nurse tells me everyone who has not had skin cancer gets yearly appointments. He’s new. I ask about Cowdens Syndrome. He looks surprised and I get a six month return appointment for a skin check.

After all my questions are answered I get a biopsy for early August. The biopsy is on my bum. It looks to be a long ten days.

 

Why not just get rid of it?

Its been suggested that because of my high rick for cancer just get rid of it. Your know have surgery, take it out. Everything will be better without the risk right.

No, I have Pulmonary Hypertension. Pulmonary Hypertension is high blood pressure of the lungs. Take a look at http://www.SometimesItsPH.org

The site give a good definition of PH. I have many of the symptoms. Anyone can be diagnosed of PH. About half the people I met at the last convention are on oxygen. I have many PH symptoms but so far am not on oxygen.

I had complications with being put to sleep for surgery because of PH. My doctors have said its better for me to avoid surgery when possible. So I am not a candidate for any cancer prevention surgery.

I was diagnosed with pulmonary hypertension the same time I was diagnosed with right side heart failure. But thats another post.

A couple of sites

SometimesItsPH.org

PHAssociation

AmericanHeartAssociation

Check out heart failure on the American Heart Association site.

Cold and Frustrated

 

quilt at conference

quilt at conference

I am cold and frustrated. Winter has finally hit Ohio and if it were up to me it could have stayed away.  We do not have a fenced in yard, so whenever the dog has to go out someone has to take her.It was 27 this afternoon when I took Bailey out. Bailey is our dog we got this past April at the age of 15. She is a border collie mix, sweet dog. Bailey is a really slow walker, has to sniff at everything. This past May Bailey turned 16. I didn’t want a puppy, wanted a dog who needed us. But on a good day it takes at least 30 minutes outside for Bailey to finish everything.

I have been inside over an hour and my hands are starting to hurt again. My fingers are still cold. I am typing wearing gloves.I found an old Christmas present of gloves with the fingers cut out to text with a mitten top for over the holes. They work really well. Hope they still make them.  One symptom of pulmonary hypertension is cold hands. Mine get worse in the winter.

Tomorrow I see a new doctor. Can not remember the last time I saw a gyn. My breast specialist referred me. I looked him up, among other things this doc speciality is hereditary cancer. A new doctor to explain my overgrown pelvic AVM too. I have been told some odd things about the pelvic AVM over the years. Lose weight and it will go away. The AVM causes no pain just looks different. Wrong!!!  Hope he is kind.