Well aren’t I just a bloggin’ fool. Ok, the plan is in place for surgery. Because of the location of the largest tumor (it’s wrapped around some large veins in my abdomen) the doctor is not sure he’ll be able to remove it. So what he’s going to do is start with a laproscopic approach and depending on what he sees either just take a tissue sample or proceed with a debulking surgery. This procedure is scheduled for Monday the 17th @ 2:30pm. I’m not exactly happy about having to wait that long, but he only operates a few days a week and that was the first he could get me in. I’ve asked him if it’s worth waiting at this point for a chance that surgery may not even make a difference. I’m waiting on an answer.
Anyway, I want to move as soon as I can. The timeline for that will depend on how invasive my surgery is and how much recovery time I’ll need. Even if he does the full surgery I still hope to do the move no later than sometime the week of the 31st (fingers crossed).
With all that in mind, here’s what I’ll need help with over the next few weeks:
- Boxes – I only have a few cardboard and rubbermaid containers
- Help to/from surgery
- Possible help at home for a few days after surgery
- Packers – I want to try to pack as much as possible before the surgery while I can still lift things. If you have a free evening and want to just hang out and do some low-key packing that would be awesome! Closer to the move I’ll be post-op and will need more help with stuff that can’t go in boxes right now.
- Movers – Not just to carry things down to the truck. But also to help with the drive to PA. I don’t know if I’ll be able to drive at all or not, so possibly someone who can drive my car and someone else to drive a U-Haul.
- UNpackers – to help me get settled in mom’s house. There will likely be some furniture moving to find a place for everything.
- Someone to coordinate volunteers – I’ll be busy making medical decisions and then be loopy on pain killers. Probably best case scenario is 1) someone to coordinate packers here on move day, 2) someone to coordinate unpackers in PA, 3) someone to coordinate food contributions (more on that below). Possibly also a generic contact person here in St Louis for after surgery.
As most of you know, eating during chemo is a constant struggle. Having been through this before there were a few foods we found I was able to tolerate. Heaven knows what might be the same or different this time around, but some of those foods in particular are things that will be hard to get at mom’s (mostly because there’s no Trader Joe’s nearby, haha). So, St Louis friends, there are some things I want to try to stock up on before I leave. If you’re interested in helping but aren’t available for any of the above, donations of the following food items would be appreciated (if they’re pre-boxed all the better, for all items organic is preferred since I’ll be getting enough chemicals through IV, but I won’t be picky, items somewhat arranged by preference).
- Juice Plus vanilla complete mix for smoothies
- Trader Joe’s fruit juices (blackberry, blueberry, beet, carrot, etc)
- Trader Joe’s Kosher Dill Pickles
- TJ’s frozen Mac & Cheese meals
- TJ’s peppermint tea
- TJ’s Goddess dressing
- TJ’s kalamata olive tapenade
- TJ’s parmesan crisps
- TJ’s Garden Patch juice (low sodium)
- TJ’s canned peaches and pears (particularly the peaches)
- TJ’s blueberry pop tarts
- TJ’s fruit popsicles
- TJ’s electrolyte water (can really be from anywhere, but theirs is a good deal)
- Whole Food’s fresh almond butter
- TJ’s rice noodle soup bowls
- TJ’s frozen mashed potatoes
- TJ’s creamy salted peanut butter
Folks at home, don’t worry. I have a list of things for you too that you can bring once I’m there.
If you’re interested in helping with any of the above please for now send a note through the contact form on this blog or an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks!
PRAYER: for the doctor, that God will give him discernment, confidence and guide his hands as he takes this first step with me
PRAYER: that I will have patience with the schedule and not get stressed out about my lack of control here
PRAYER: That even though things don’t happen on my timeline, the cancer will not advance quickly. I want to fight every battle along the way as effectively as possible.
PRAYER: That I will find ways to savor these last days in the city I’ve lived in and had a love-hate relationship with now for almost 6 years, and the people who live here.