Monday, August 26, 2013

There's a Cream for that!

When I was a kid and had to go to the pediatrician's to get a mom always promised me an ice cream afterwards to make me feel better ( was really sherbet as I had to watch my milk intake as I had a sensitivity to dairy products).  I didn't like needles then unless they were pulling thread.

So, when I had a deep port which was often difficult to access, the nurses offered me a numbing cream for the skin.  I thought that was pretty silly as the skin was just a temporary prick and it didn't hurt much. What did hurt is when they dug around trying to find the port, poking through muscle tissue.  There's no cream for that unfortunately.

Since then, particularly after I got my current port which sits right under my skin and looks like an alien has taken up residence, I snorted when people asked me if I needed "the cream."

Today, however, I changed my mind about what I thought about it.  I was talking with another breast cancer patient who watched me get accessed.  She asked me why I didn't use THE CREAM.  I said I never really understood it.  She told me it made her life so much easier...and less painful.....and more relaxed to "get her pokes."

Hmmmm. I had known  that I could tolerate pain very well...but I never thought about it, especially in the case of needle pricks.  I said that I guess I really do have a pretty high tolerance, and said I delivered my baby without any kind of anesthesia. I thought my chemo partner for the day was going to pass out right there.

So..if you didn't know, and that pin prick hurts, just ask for the analgesic cream (it is sort of like Novocaine in a tube).  But also remind them to wait a little bit for the alcohol swabs to dry on the skin surface.  It does hurt when the needle carries in the alcohol and burns.

So...remember you can ask for THE CREAM.....and the kind of cream above isn't bad either.  I will still skip the former and occasionally have the later. Anyone want to share with their own spoon?

Friday, August 23, 2013

Karma and Punishment

About a month ago, I was sitting in my office trying to sort out insurance issues, deal with the denial of coverage for my husband and my daughter (for acne for pete's sake)  and dealing with some things which would be minor under most circumstances, but with the lack of income in my has become major. I began to wonder what in heaven's name did I do  to deserve this?  I then was reading one of the posts from an older, devout Christian lady on one of the metastatic breast cancer boards I read and she said that she believed God was punishing her.

I am sure that this lady hasn't killed anyone,.  In fact, I am pretty sure that her transgressions are minor.....and my head snapped to.  If God is an entity who mets out punishment like this, then I want no part of him...and I certainly DO NOT believe in Karma, particularly the thought that the actions of an ancestor several generations ago can plague us now.  No.  This is just the human side of us wanted to explain the unexplainable....why we are suffering.

But it isn't just's suffer horrendous diseases....innocent children do as well.  Unfortunately, suffering side-swipes us...and it is up to us to make the best of it.   Sometimes I admit to myself of being a little jealous of those who are planning trips, and retirement.....and  I can't.  But, I will continue to forge ahead, and enjoy what I can.  I hope you will too.

I know this isn't a chameleon, but my photographs of anoles I took several years ago in Florida, are now corrupted and I borrowed this photograph of "Carlos" from Lauretta Brandow Kyser.