December fourteenth

Alright! Good morning and good news: I am going to Canada!


Wooohooo! Happy dancing!

When I first mentioned the idea to Doctor Blonde at C3, she said to me: “Theoretically it’s possible, but you might have to work through red tape.”

Which is why it’s best to go to the top. When asking the lead oncologist he said, “I can’t see why that’d be a problem. I’ll send off a letter.”

Two weeks after that meeting I still didn’t have any news. First my file was lost (may still be lost) and then the doctor’s secretary kept telling me she ‘had the tape’ but hadn’t transcribed it. For a while I was stressing over how LONG everything takes. But, in a second meeting with the lead oncologist – let’s call him Dr Lead, because ‘lead oncologist’ is time consuming – he told me he’d sent an email, not a letter, and it should have been with the doctor in Canada two weeks ago.

Two weeks with no response? Fishy . . .

My mom sent her own email, to which the doctor in Canada, Dr Canada, responded with a phone call to the house. He told her that he hadn’t heard from England.

Ah! Okay. Now at this point I wonder – who was right – Dr Blond or Dr Lead? (Sometimes I wish I could use their real names, because these nick names are just silly!) Was this communication mix up ‘red tape’ or simply a misfired email? In either case, I’d say there’s been a handful of confusion . . . and yet, things are working.

I wrote an email to my UK oncologist, Dr Lead, asking him to please resend his original email to the address I provided again (hopefully correct this time). Wow, email is awesome. In other circumstances I would have waited till clinic or gone through his less than friendly secretary. But with a quick Google search of his name: BAM! Email acquired.

Monday morning he resent the introductory letter to Dr Canada and CCed me and my mother. The oncologist in Canada wrote back yesterday (Tuesday), saying he’s happy to have me and will start things rolling.

Not only are plans unfolding well, but now I’m in touch with an apparently excellent oncologist in Canada who, according to Rate-your-doctor, is kind and supportive. Furthermore, back when I started chemo it was my goal to fly home on the 14th of December. Now, even if I do have another setback, that goal will be met. All of this feels really good.

Next up, I’ll arrange things with Air Canada. Apparently they can help me through the airport, which is great because I have a feeling December 14th will be an exhausting day. Mind you, I’ve never been pushed in a wheelchair before; it’s another physical admission of illness, but geez – thinking about those long walks, I guess there’s little choice.

Less than three weeks and I’ll be with my family again. True it’s only for a visit, but it means the world to me nevertheless.   :) Isn’t good news fun?

Soon!

Tomorrow I plan on writing a blog about my Christmas plans. I’d have done it today but it involves too much typing. Also, I’d like to spend some time doodling on Paint.

So soon! Soon. First I need to get some sleep, because man-oh-mercy am I tired. For the past two hours I’ve been obsessing over the US body-scanning fuss and spending way too much time reading articles when I ought to be heading to bed. But I guess a breast cancer blog isn’t the place to spurt my pro-dignity opinions. Well I could . . . I mean, at least they have an option in the US – in the UK, last I heard, refusing a body scan is reason enough to be kicked out of the airport, no alternative available (does anyone know if that crazy policy is still in place?).

Ah! There I go again, distracting myself from getting sleep. My body says ‘SLEEP’ but my mind says ‘THINK’. These two really need to get in sync. If I’m not careful this will turn into another sleepless night.

Tomorrow I’ll write about Christmas.

Smiling in the mirror

When I look in the mirror I see a pale face with dark circles under her eyes. I see a bald head, too much skin, and traces of peach fuzz hair. I see a woman who doesn’t look like a woman, but doesn’t look like a man either. She looks alien. Alien to me.

One of these days I’ll look in the mirror and see what I picture in my mind: long hair, blushing cheeks, thick brows and lashes, and an expression of contentment, because I’ll have the peace of mind to be easily content. I imagine sweeping the hair out of my eyes, and enjoying the view.

It’s hard to feel pretty sometimes. Not always, though lately. But this will pass, because there have been other times when I’ve felt ugly, and times when I’ve felt beautiful. Besides, when that woman in the mirror smiles – well, there I am. That’s me, no doubt. Thank God for that.

When I smile, I see myself.