Monday, October 27, 2008

Stranger Danger!

Edgar decided today to play guard dog at the apartment since I have the baby gate up and the door open so they could sit out in the sun. It wasn't too long before an unsuspecting guest wandered into the vicinity. Here's a picture of the "Stranger Danger" incident!

Well, let's just say that I think Edgar showed that plastic bag who was boss! This picture was taken a few minutes after the initial incident but he was out there crouched down just barking and barking at that plastic bag - it was not going to escape without being taught a lesson. I don't think it will be wandering into our garden again any time soon. Also, I think my plants on my front porch have become home to a family of lizards. This is the second baby lizard I have found hanging out in my plants in the past month or two. This lizard is a lot smaller  than the first one was (he's maybe about an inch long) and I've seen this one several times lately. 

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Border Collie Riding Monkeys

And I sooooo want one! We went to the Angola Prison Rodeo today and it was amazing. I can't believe what some of those prisoners will actually do. We only saw one guy that got hurled in the air that didn't move when he hit the ground. A few of the other inmates carried him off. This was during the last event where they tie a poker chip between the horns of a very unhappy bull and the prisoners all run around and try and get it off (they win money for this event). The other event that was painful to watch but was a lot of fun was the poker game. During this game four guys get a deck of cards and sit down at a poker table. They let a bull loose in the ring and the last man to stay seated is the winner. While the guys are sitting there you have rodeo clowns running around making the bull very angry. During the second round, the bull broke the table, but two guys remained seated. The bull got a folding chair stuck around his horn and his leg. Once he broke through that, he was seriously looking for some revenge. He was kicking up dirt and had his head down ready to charge. Thankfully, he didn't hit anyone on that charge. Okay, now my favorite part: the monkeys. They let a few bighorn sheep loose in the ring and then three border collies with MONKEYS riding on their backs came out and herded the sheep in to a pen, and then into the back of a truck. It was amazing. I think we need a monkey to ride on the back of Ruekie. It would be so cute! 

When we finally got home we took the dogs out to run around. Well, apparently Edgar got rolled by either Ruekie or their friend Amos (or maybe his own feet) and came limping back and whining. He seemed okay after and kept running around after the other two dogs. When we got ready to leave we noticed blood on the tennis ball and Edgar's mouth was dripping. He had bit his tongue! The poor guy got locked in the bathroom when we got home until he stopped bleeding and then he got a bath! What a miserable night for him! 

On another note, I weighed myself last night before I went to bed and then I weighed myself again this morning when I woke up, apparently I lost seven pounds over night, SEVEN pounds! Aren't you only supposed to lose like two or three? See, this is the battle I'm up against. I'm hoping the endocrinologist gives me a call tomorrow (I'm following up with him from my tilt table test). The cardiologist called Warner and gave him a quick run through of my test results and he said it showed a "slight abnormality." You think??? Ha. Hopefully I will find out soon what they are going to do for me, if anything. 

Okay, well it's bedtime. So, if any of you want to go buy me a trained, dog - riding monkey, I can promise I would get you the coolest Christmas gift ever. Like cookies or something, maybe even a cake. That's it, I'm asking Santa for one.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Remission Accomplished

Sorry we kept you all in the dark about my pet scan, which I had last week (I just kept you all distracted with my tilt table test), but we didn't want everyone freaking out and stressing out about stuff and asking us a million questions about it. So, it was better this way, for you sanity and ours. So, yes, I'm officially in remission - no cancer showed up on the scan. Dr. Bienvenu also let me see the scan as well at my appointment today. Apparently I have metal "markers" in my tongue that show where they resected it and they show up on the scan - it was kind of cool to see. I told Dr. Bienvenu about my tilt table test because he is the one who referred me to Dr. Silverberg. He was quite amazed at my reaction to the test. I asked Dr. Bienvenu about my theory of my weight loss and he said that was probably the culprit. He also said I am the first case that he has seen of having an autonomic disorder pop up from either my type of surgery or the chemo I was on. I reminded him that there really wasn't anything normal about me anymore, and he agreed. After my appointment we went by the SICU to see if Melissa - my favorite nurse - was there, and she was! And she says hi to everyone. Apparently she had just askd Dr. Pou about me a few days ago. 

So, to celebrate Warner and I went to the Baton Rouge Zoo. It was fun, but I definitely like the New Orleans Zoo better, so I'm going to have to take Warner out there sometime. Then we went to lunch with my friend Travis at Mellow Mushroom - a pizza place in Baton Rouge that I had heard was good (and it was). I think we may be going out to dinner tonight, but I'm not really sure, we may just eat left overs. Here are a few pictures for you all:

Me, on my first official day in remission!

I love flamingos! 

A picture of us. We don't get too many of the two of us 
because one of us is usually behind the camera. 
So most of out pictures of both of us are close up like this.

This was the coolest giraffe EVER. 
He kept licking the fence!

You can see the extent of my weight loss in this picture. 
I'm wasting away! Haha, not really. 

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

I'm Really Not Faking!

I had my tilt table test this afternoon. The test is supposed to take an hour and a half. Mine lasted 25 minutes and 1 second. You know why? Because I really do have something wrong with me. So, my test last 25 minutes, but 15 minutes of that was spent lying flat at the beginning to get a baseline reading. So I got to the testing room, had an EKG hooked up to me (they rub your skin with sandpaper first, and umm, that hurts...ALOT!) then I had an IV put in as a precaution and they put a blood pressure cuff on my arm that went off every two minutes - it was like being back in ICU. So, the first 15 minutes were boring, just laying around, strapped to a table, have my blood pressure taken, and talking with the nurse. After 15 minutes they raised me up to a seventy degree angle, basically standing. That's when the fun began. Usually when I stand up I get light headed and dizzy so I do what I have to do and then I go sit back down. Some times I last longer than others (I can go shopping and stuff, but other times I have trouble taking a shower) and I'm usually worse off in the mornings. When she raised me up to the standing position, but pulse, right on cue, rocketed up to 120 before it stabilized around 115 or 116. It had been in the mid 80s while lying down. Well, I made it about ten minutes before the nurse came over and announced the test was over and lowered me down. I was really confused, and said, what?? Then she said that she had lost my radial pulse and my blood pressure dropped way too low. Do you want to know what my pulse was? Yeah, while laying flat it was normal like 120 over 65 ish. When I had been standing up for a few minutes, right before the test ended, it was 78 over 52!!!!!!!!!! She kept coming over and pushing the machine to make sure it was reading everything right and she kept checking for my pulse once they lost it. My heart rate had sky rocketed to 136 by the end of the test as well. I was sweating and my ankles were itchy! When she told me she lost my radial pulse, I asked her what that meant, to which she replies, "Good question." When she told me my blood pressure I asked her if I should have passed out before that point, and she said, many people would have, but not necessarily. So, now I am waiting for a phone call from the cardiologist for a follow up! Woohoo, another specialist! I still don't have a primary care physician, but who needs one when you have a specialist for EVERY possible ailment. So, that's my story. I'm waiting to see what the treatment regime will be. I'm hoping for some sort of alternative treatment methods, instead of taking drugs all the time. Oh, also (and this is just my theory here) the nurse mentioned that if I didn't have any reaction to the tilt they would give me adrenaline to see if that would cause my symptoms (it wasn't necessary obviously) but she said that the adrenaline was a good way to burn calories (because it sped up your heart rate). So, I'm thinking that this is why I'm losing weight so easily (while trying to GAIN weight) because my heart rate is always sped way up when I'm up and walking around. I'll let you know what the doctor says about this. For now, I'm going to go bake a cake! 

Tilt Table Test Today

So today I have my tilt table test. Hopefully my body reacts to it and they don't think I've lost my mind. I always worry that I'm just being paranoid and that there really is nothing wrong with me. They are going to try and make me pass out, but I don't know that it's going to happen because I don't know that I ever get that bad. Oh well, we will see how it goes. At least I get to spend part of my afternoon with Warner. 

This picture makes me laugh. This is a bucket of most of the drugs I was taking during my treatment. These are just the ones that I had leftovers of when I stopped taking them all. It does not include the bottles that were finished off, like the antibiotics and the meds that are in my refrigerator. I am really happy that I am not taking anything anymore. I'm sure Warner is too, because he was the one that had to give them all to me every day. The pharmacy I go to probably has me on some sort of watch list for all these medications. Oh well, I'll let you know how the test goes today.

Thursday, October 16, 2008


So, I know what you all are thinking. When did Stephanie get long, black, curly hair?? I just want you all to know that those are not pictures of me, but they are pictures of my evil twin, Bethany. For real! Okay, it's really me. I was messing with make-up today for my Halloween costume for the company party. We are going to be pirates! I used different eye shadow on each eye (the right one is green and the left is black) to see which I liked better and I think I'm going with the right eye. I got the wig because since when do you see pirates with short hair?? And because it's tons of fun! I think I need rocker hair in real life. I am a rock star after all, right? I need to take a picture of my real hair (and the lack of) at some point so you all can see my bald spot because no one asked about it this past weekend while we were in Auburn and I forgot to show it off. 

In other news, Paula is in town and I get to see her tomorrow. We are going to go shopping at the newly opened Banana Republic Outlet and then out to eat! I'm excited! Oh! In other news, I went swimming last night! Haha, we went and got in the hot tub for a few minutes and we jumped in the freezing cold pool after. So, after going all summer without swimming, I finally get to go in the middle of October! Oh well, I need to go wash my face so I don't scare Warner when he gets home! 

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Woo Pig Sooie!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Road Trip!

Okay, we are going to Auburn this weekend. So we will see everyone sometime tomorrow night. Now for some new pictures from my new camera!!

This is my friend's little girl. 
She's six months old here and soooo smiley. 
I'm going to take more pictures of her eventually 
but contrary what this picture shows, 
she was not having a good night!

Of course here is Edgar!

Okay, that's all I've got for now. I'll put more pictures up later. For now I have to go eat dinner and pack for the weekend before we have to go pick Anna up from the airport!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008


The seasons have officially changed here in Louisiana as of yesterday (we do things differently here and don't change with the rest of the country) because my allergies are OUT OF CONTROL! We got some serious rain yesterday afternoon and that must have triggered it. I've been walking around all day doing that half squinty eye thing like you're on the verge of sneezing. 

My appointment with Dr. Pou last week went well. It was the parade of the residents (not really, there were only two with her) but she had them looking at everything along with her and she was explaining my case and I answered a few of their questions. The only frustrating part was that it took twice as long to be scoped because Dr. Pou had the residents look down my throat as well. Oh well, all for the name of science I guess. I got in a lot of trouble for losing 7 pounds (in seven weeks) so I got lectured and was told to drink an ensure in the afternoon (not going to happen because they are NASTY!). So I bought protein powder and frozen fruit and make my own smoothies that way. I'm not gaining any weight though, I guess it's okay as long as I'm not losing any more. I'm okay with it all though, because it gives me an excuse to go shopping (as if I need an excuse!) but enough about that.

Warner's shut down started yesterday and he was super tired by the time he got home last night. We went to the Saints football game on Monday night and got home at about 1:00 am. He woke up at 5 Tuesday morning to get ready for work and he got home at 10 last night. He was back up at 5 this morning, but hopefully he will get home a little earlier tonight.

This weekend we will hopefully be going to Auburn and I think that cancer should be off - limits for conversation. I don't want people telling me how good I look because contrary to popular belief, I really don't like all the attention! Hank (Warner's cousin) and I are going to take some pictures at an old cotton gin at some point over the weekend. The cotton fields are blooming as well, so I'm really looking forward to that since I just got a new camera (canon 50d). Anna (Warner's sister) is coming down to Louisiana tomorrow night and is going to Auburn with us. Should be fun! Maybe she'll model for me so I can get used to my camera! 

Yesterday was my last day of physical therapy. I got a tshirt for finishing (how appropriate, right?). I have been going to PT since the end of June. I had ten weeks total plus some breaks in the middle because my neck was super burned from the radiation. I brought in some pictures with me so we could all remember what I looked like back when I started and so they could see some pictures of me looking horrible in the hospital (because yeah, I looked horrible). At my first therapy appointment I threw up once and my arm was still attached to the wound vac. So, it'll be weird not going since I've gone for so long, but I've come a long way since that first visit. They told me to come back and visit but they didn't want to see me again for therapy.