On September 3, 2011 I was diagnosed with Stage IV colon cancer. I had emergency surgery and the tumor was removed but it has spread to my liver. I wear an ostomy bag now.
In October 2011, I will begin chemo to beat back the tumor in my liver. I am getting stronger each day and trying to stay positive. I am unable to work. I have applied for Medicaid but that will only cover a fraction of my bills.
I am calling out now, not only for your continued good wishes and thoughts but for financial help. If you can help in any way, please help me fight and win my battle. No donation is too big or too small. With the love and support of those around me, I know, together, we can win this.
Please keep the love flowing in your thoughts for me. I can feel it helping to carry me on this journey. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
I'm also very pleased to announce that friend and artist DTM has offered all proceeds from his posters and book sales to benefit GO THE CATHERINE.
I'm a huge fan of his work and grateful for this generous offer. Take a look and maybe buy some great art for your walls. It is for a good cause.
Thanks for listening and viewing!

Cambodia posters available at:

CHURNING THE SEA OF MILK books available at:

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

A Gift From Anarchy/Happy Thanksgiving

Most of you know I post on the website Sailing Anarchy and have met many fellow Anarchists in my travels,  dated one or two of them and formed lasting friendships with others.   Sailing is a small world and SA has created a community. some of whom  frequently get together in the 'real world'. Most users know each other because we sail together and share a love of the greatest sport in the world: sailboat racing.  Though it's a 'virtual' place,  the website has some big shoulders that I receive much support, emotionally and financially, from.  Someone is always awake on the Anarchy Forum, it has helped me through many a panic attack that hits at 4am, when no one in this hemisphere is awake.

I received a present in the mail today from another Anarchette, who lives in Australia, that has me overwhelmed with gratitude. A fitting emotion here on Thanksgiving Eve. It was an absolutely gorgeously beautiful quilt with sailboats and seashells and a backing the color of the ocean. The best part is the personalized label on the back. It's like a screen shot of how many users are reading a particular topic and it says:

"...mainsheetgirl - we know the label is in a funny place but we wanted to be as close to your heart as you are to ours...
(followed by the modified version of Footprints In The Sand)
A squillion User(s) are reading this topic thinking of you, fighting for you, sending their love, support & checking in daily for updates
All the members, lots of guests, the usual lurkers anonymous users

(followed by a list of the screen names of at least 100 Anarchists, some of of whom I have met and love and others whose paths I have yet to cross.)..."

I burst into tears of gratitude and am so very moved by this gift. I cherish it. It's a reminder of all that I have to be thankful for, despite the cancer: the wonderful family I have found  on SA.

Thank you. So much. So very much.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone. Count your blessings, be thankful for what you have and make it nice.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Good News

My blood counts went up, according to my oncologist visit Monday.  That's good.  I am still a bit anemic but the iron pills upset my stomach so I am trying to obtain my iron from spinach and kale and I reckon a good steak would help also. Although I decided a few weeks back to stop eating red meat.   The anemia probably contributes to my fatigue also.
I got approved for Medicaid which means my next round of chemo (Round #3 ~ 1/4 of the way done!!) can be done in the doctor office and not in hospital.  I still dread it but it is not the hospital.  I hate the fucking hospital.   Tomorrow morning at 9am, they will access my port for a 3 hour infusion of Avastin. Then I get to come home with a pack full of drugs hooked up to my port, a big IV,  to finish the 48 hour infusion of the other drugs.  I will be in my own house, with my own stuff and no stupid strangers waking me up at 8:30AM wanting to change my sheets.  That annoyed the crap out of me. 
I am feeling a bit discouraged, it's been very hard. I cry.  I am angry.  Depressed.  Just when I feel like I am recovering from the chemo, I get nailed with another round.  I wonder how I am going to manage 5 more months of this. 
Dan is really good at snapping me out of it, reminding me to just breathe and stay in the moment.  I will get through it because it is the way forward.  He helps me a lot.  Thanks, Dan.  I could not do this without you.  And your yummy juices also, they are made with love and lots of fresh veggies.   Love ya.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Round Two Finished

This morning started out like a Tucker Max story but without the alcohol, hilarity or sex.  While eating my bowl of Life cereal and almond milk, I felt my stoma become very, very active and suddenly there was a big blow out from behind the wafer.  The wafer is a circular piece of adhesive that attaches to my skin around the stoma that my ostomy bag snaps onto.  Shit was everywhere. Literally, down my leg, on my cooter, across my stomach.  Even down on my socks. My bowel  movements are involuntary now, I cannot control when or where they will happen.  Reality sucks sometimes.  Into the shower, in tears because I was humiliated, to get cleaned up.  Showers take a lot of energy, which I don't have this soon after chemo. 
The tears stop.  I bathe,  finish my breakfast and take a 5 hour nap.   I can look back at this morning with a mild sense of humor but not much.  
I was discharged at 2am Sunday November 6th from hospital.  I am a terrible patient: cranky, lashing out, swearing up a storm,  completely pissed off at having to be trapped in a bed in a room.  They wanted me gone as badly as I wanted to leave. It was a three day treatment and on day 3 a nurse finally kept me sedated from 2am Friday until 7pm Saturday.  That was the only way I got through the ordeal. 
Magical sleep. 
I've been home for almost two days and except for the fatigue/weakness, I am tolerating the chemo well.  I am thankful for that.