Monday, February 27, 2012

The Tennis Ball: An Update

The post title is a little misleading because it's not as though the Tennis Ball is up to anything. It's not even up to, you know, existing. But I finally had my follow up appointment with Dr. D. last week and thought the news was worth recording. So here is the final chapter in the Tennis Ball Saga. I like to call it The Tennis Ball Saga: Full Color.

The most exciting part of the appointment was that I finally got to see the photos Drew saw a month ago. It's a strange thing to see the actual insides of your own body. It looks so straightforward in a medical diagram but really it's just a bunch of squishy things squished next to other squishy things.

But what you're all REALLY wondering is what the heck did this Tennis Ball look like? Right? Well. I'm sorry to say I don't have copies of the photos. But here's a little recreation I whipped up in Photoshop:
You knew that was coming! Here's the real deal:Pink, shiny, veiny. It reminded me very much of a slightly deflated balloon, and Dr. D. said it almost as large as the actual uterus. But it's no more and apparently the removal was very straightforward and simple. Even though I never felt it I have since realized it would sometimes be squashing my bladder. Yep. Unsquashed Bladder: the unexpected side effect of being Tennis Ball-free. And hopefully this is the last time my bladder comes up in a public venue.


Another photo I saw was of the endometriosis creeping all over an ovary. It looked like chocolate sauce, to be honest, but you'll just have to imagine that one--I draw the line on medical illustrations at fibroids. So, they removed all that, but he suspects there's more elsewhere in the region, and that it is most likely the real culprit in preventing offspring thus far. Just as a brief explanation of endometriosis is, it's when cells from the uterine lining (the endometrium) grow outside the uterus, which leads to various problems. The cause is unknown so there's no real cure either, and it's more about management. I can't say the news was a terrible surprise, and it won't be to anyone else who has known me through my younger years. Dr. D. thinks either my symptoms haven't been too bad or I just have a high pain tolerance. I'm not really sure either, not having been in anyone else's body for comparison, but I would say I have an Advil-assisted pain tolerance. Oh, Advil, how I love you and your sweet, sweet medicine.

Did I mention they found some cysts too? Of course! Those are gone now too.

So, that's just kind of what's going on now. No more tennis ball. Also no more surgical glue (hurray!). Just me and the endo. And Drewbles. Two out of three isn't too bad, eh?

Friday, February 24, 2012

Something Gross, Something Awesome

Last December I tried out this new "molten chocolate" body wash. I like chocolate, I like soap, why not combine them, right? When I bought it it was a delightful milk chocolate color (showing here). In the new year I noticed that it was not looking so milk chocolate-y anymore. In fact it was looking more like, well, old-meat grey. Showing here:
I was finally too grossed out to use it anymore. Happily it did no damage to my fondness for chocolate or soap.

Moving on. I have a great weakness for pajama pants. I have Pokemon pants, Strawberry Shortcake pants, Egyptian mice pants, Halloween pants (2), snowflake pants, Batman pants...and yet I am always enthralled with new ones. My sister got me these pajama pants recently and I have been wearing them ever since (as the wrinkles will evidence).
Look closer, for the full awesome.
Bird cages! Birds! They're just delightful and unexpected. I wish I were wearing them right now.

Bonus Drewbles, in the kitchen WHERE HE BELONGS:

Thursday, February 23, 2012

You Just Gestured to All of Me

News that is not news: I love the movie How to Train Your Dragon. It is awesome and by far my favorite thing that Dreamworks has ever done (granted, there is not much competition for that title).

News that IS news: I learned this very morn that there's a stage/arena version of it opening down in Australia this year. And here's the thing--it looks AMAZING. Look at Hiccup and Toothless, who is an animatronic/puppet.
Amazing, right?? I thought it was some kind of Photoshop job. If you want to blow your mind further (seriously, mine was blown), you can watch a video of a nadder in action via this article. It's huge! And amazing! Did I mention it's amazing? It breathes smoke! And fire! They aren't as cute as they are in the movie, but I can't believe how real they look.

I expect John Hammond will show up with an explanation at any minute.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Oh, Like the Week-end?

I love a three-day holiday weekend. It's really the best kind of weekend. I enjoyed this last holiday weekend so much I can't resist documenting it. It was such a satisfying combination of fun, laziness and productivity, and really, isn't that best kind of holiday weekend? Here is how we celebrated the births...lives....existence....of Presidents:

I reacquainted myself with Diablo II. I mention this first because this was an ongoing activity through the weekend. I think it's been three years or so since I played, and it was just as fun as I remembered. All that was missing was my family peeps to play with online! Wanna play, peeps?
(Look at all my dudes--skeleton dudes, skeleton mage dudes and my blood golem dude. Score.)

We saw an early bird of this movie.
(Pretty good. Someone cut Sam Worthington's hair before it becomes a true mullet.)

We ate many good foods, including this Thai coconut soup (twice), more of these chocolate cookies (much more than twice), some Poppers, pulled pork (the in-laws get credit for this one) and some random things at Sam's Club. We finished off the weekend by having grits, which are always delicious and not at all fattening. Right?

We got some books signed by this lady:
I've only read one of her books, but since most authors I read are long since dead, I thought I might as well take advantage of the opportunity to meet a living one. She was very pleasant and not uppity at all, though some people are disgruntled by her dislike of Tangled.

I finally started running again on Saturday. I was very slow.

One of my goals for this year was to go through my closet and get rid of all those things that have escaped previous purgings because I think I'll wear them. I never do, so off they went at last. Look at this haul!
I also finally gave up my beloved and truly tattered pink hoodie.
I don't want to talk about it.

Side note: does anyone know where I can find a pink hoodie with a) no words or logos and b) that is not made out of velour?

I then went on to clean out the fridge but I decided against photographic evidence of what I threw out. Some people were so enthralled with the look of some rotting potatoes they even wrote a Facebook status about it. Other people were too disgusted by the smell to care much for the look of them.

And that about sums up our weekend. Now I can start counting down to the next, which is Good Friday. It's only um...some number of days away.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

That Parasol is Too Small

This week I introduced Drewbles to the following mini series:
It's in the same line of "historical reality" shows as The 1900s House and The Edwardian Country House. I haven't seen those so I can't tell you how this one compares, but essentially, it's five single men and five single women put in this house for two months. The ladies all have chaperones to keep things proper, and everyone has a different history (inspired by their real life), social status and role. For instance, one lady is a countess but is secretly impoverished, one man is a naval officer and one lady is rich but has no title. The chaperones are all trying to get their girls the best matches, but of course everyone is constrained by the rules of the day.

I first saw this in Ye Olde Bloomington with Marcue and Ann, and lately I decided Drew should see it too. His comment after finishing the first episode was "This is so interesting and strange." If that's not a ringing endorsement, I don't know what is! But seriously, not only is it entertaining to watch modern people bumble their way through two months in the Regency period, but it's also super informative. If you have any interest in Jane Austen at all, it is definitely worth watching to learn more about the time period. Not only is there class, courtship and propriety, but there is also chamber pots, hermits and egg whites! Plus, if you have ever wondered how lady folk dealt with Aunt Irma, this has the answer. It will give you a new appreciation for modern *ahem* lady products.

To sum up: Watch it! It's only two discs and it will show you a whole new side of the Regency world.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

In Which Our Hearts are Warmed by Tiny Furry Creatures

Happy Valentine's Day, world! I'm going to celebrate by wearing more red than usual, working, eating sushi and watching the traditional Disney movie. Later this week I will continue to celebrate by making these. Or maybe these. Or possibly both.

This year my Valentine's Day gift to the world is some pictures (none of which I took, alas, but you can find their source by clicking on them, if you so desire). I'm not sharing just ANY pictures though--I'm sharing KITTY PICTURES. Don't try to fight their cuteness.

Happy Valentine's Day!

Thursday, February 02, 2012

In Which I Have No Tennis Ball

And now for the final act...the Tennis Ball's last stand.

But first I have two things to say. 1) No one need feel bad for not knowing about any part of this saga. We kept it under our hats. 2) Thanks for the well wishes! They were much appreciated.

Back to the Tennis Ball.

Tuesday dawned very early so that we could be to the hospital at 6 AM. We waited for a bit then I was sent off to get my blood drawn. Let me state for the record that I had my blood taken a number of times in January and never had a single problem. Sometimes I even watched the needle go in just to be tough. This time I got all hot and dizzy by the third vial and had to crumple up in the chair so I wouldn't pass out. After I dry heaved a little I felt all better.

The rest of the morning was much less eventful. In fact, I will break it down into the events that transpired, chronologically:

1) Nurse Jose walked in on my half-dressed self.
2) I put on Hospital Socks so my freshly painted red toenails went unappreciated.
3) I camped out in the pre-surgery area for a long time.
4) Nurse Jake made two attempts to get my IV in.
5) They took my glasses.

I mention my glasses because it meant that I never actually SAW the tiny robot hands in the room. I didn't see much at all except for blurry, blue-ish people wandering around a blurry room. Once I was on the table Nurse Jake told me to take some "yoga breaths" into the mask and I'm pretty sure I was out mid-courtesy laugh.

Can I just say how disorienting it is to wake up in a different place, in a different position with no memory of how you got there and without a brain capable of understanding anything? Well, it is. I have no idea how long I was in the recovery room, but at some point the nurse asked if I wanted to go see my husband and I said "Yeeeahhhhhhhh."

Off I went back to my room, falling asleep along the way. I am delighted to say that I had the mental capacity to follow through with my one goal for the day, and that was to make my first words to Drew be "What happened about me?" I DID IT.

And now for the medical information portion of this story. I actually never saw the doctor after the surgery, but he gave Drew the scoop whilst I was busy being passed out. Drew even got to see pictures of the Tennis Ball! I'm so jealous.
I'm hoping I get to see them at the follow up appointment. It seems unfair that so many people have seen my innards and yet I am not one of those people.

Oh, back to the medical stuff.
Essentially, they made three smallish incisions and the Tennis Ball was taken out without a hitch. They also found a bit of endometriosis on one ovary (why does it feel so TMI to write the word "ovary"?) and snipped that off as well. Who knew, right? It's strange to think that so many things can be going on in your body without your knowledge. Thank goodness for tiny robot hands. Oh, and those doctors.

I spent most of the afternoon doing this:
I also spent some time lying on the bathroom floor because I thought I would pass out in there. There is no picture of that.

But here are some pictures of the prizes I got:
The sponsors of "How to Survive Wednesday"
At long, long, long last! And not a trace of...whatever that new one is called (that's a legitimate brain freeze)
I wish I had got a picture of these at the hospital when they were in better spirits. Hydrangeas are so lovely and so fickle.
Flowers from work. Thanks, work!

And thus the end of the saga. I have since named my snip snapped abdomen Tummy Tummisimo, and it appears to be healing up fine. It seemed weird to post a picture of the snip snaps, but if you would like to see how it all looks, I will happily email it. Who WOULDN'T want to see my stomach, right!?!?