PAR-TAY WITH DR. HANKS (AKA: PRE-SURGERY CONSULT) (4/29/09)

SO, I’ll do bullet points of Wednesday’s morning events and then paragraphs below with greater detail (for those interested in the SNL retells).
-Drive down to Kaiser
-Check in, vitals with nurse #1
-Consultation with Dr. Hanks (aka: awesome party for an hour)
-Giving urine sample in pre-op dept:  J giving sample, me yucking it up with nurse #2
-Pre-op consultation with nurse #3 and student nurse #4
-Lunch at subway
-Drive home

DRIVE DOWN TO KAISER
-Conversation topics consisted of : traffic patterns that J was unaware of having never really had to commute, Flight of the Conchords, this blog and some people’s resistance to the photography aspects of it, other

CHECK IN VITALS
-The nurse was SO nice and we had a discussion about how the intensity of the ‘SWINE FLU’ drama was just media hype.  She was noting that ‘washing your hands, covering your mouth when you cough’ were just NORMAL things that people should do regardless.

CONSULTATION WITH DR. HANKS (J’s SURGEON)
-this was my (Sam) favorite part of the field trip to Kaiser!
-When Dr. Hanks asked if J’s necklace was topaz and then when she couldn’t really answer for sure, he said, ‘And the trail grows cold’ was when I knew that it was going to be a complete Seinfeld party!
-He was a perfect hybrid of Mel Brooks, Doug Bookman, and a Wes Anderson character: smart, dry, odd, full of rabbit trails, kind, good natured…
-He explained how the surgery will be performed.  It was actually quite logical.  Please be aware that he was HILARIOUS (not always meaning to be) and therefore made us laugh a lot!  We asked a few questions here and there, but mostly took 3 pages of notes and laughed.
-In addition to the surgery, we also talked about technology, highschool shenanigans, how his wife is the chief of medicine in radiology, about his daughters and their lack of interest of all things medical, his thoughts on 8 tracks and vinyl records, etc.  🙂

J and the beloved Dr. Hanks!

J and the beloved Dr. Hanks!

URINE SAMPLE
-While J was giving her sample, I was in the other room yucking it right up with nurse #2.  She looked like she was 24 years old and eventually it came out that she was 42.  We talked about her upcoming birthday, how her daughter is a ‘dumb blond’ (per her), some quotes from my highschoolers, and how her son wants her to go skydiving for her birthday.  Fortunately, I’ve been skydiving and so we talked pros/cons.  She was very fun!  We laughed a lot.  When J got back, she said she could hear us laughing all the way down the hall.

NURSE #3 & NURSE #4-PRE-OP CONSULTATION
-Nurse#3 asked if we minded if  ‘Sean’ sat in with us (he’s about to graduate with his RN in June).  She (nurse#3) was VERY calm and kind as she gave J Aaaaaall the instructions for pre-op and post op.  (when to shower, what not to eat, what time to show up, where to park, etc etc etc)
-Nurse #4 did ask a great question…so, here’s to teaching hospitals!  We wished him well on his nursing career!

HOMEWARD BOUND

-Conversation involved the joy of the LORD and how great our lives would be if we yielded to joy instead of complaint or dissatisfaction, jury duty and how it would be fun to be on a jury with Eric, and other topics that I can’t remember now…
-We did wonder about a sign across the street from Subway: it was at an assisted living facility and said ‘Memory care’ … what’s that?

J exercising her photography spontaneity... I think it's worth 1,000 words.  Just not sure which ones.

J exercising her photography spontaneity... I think it's worth 1,000 words. Just not sure which ones.

What is 'Memory Care'?  We had our theories, but I bet many of you could shed light on this.

What is 'Memory Care'? We had our theories, but I bet many of you could shed light on this.

BONUS FOOTAGE:  a dumb and dumber nod

BONUS FOOTAGE: a dumb and dumber nod

A pretty fun day…and it was only noon when we ended the field trip!

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THE LORD’S BOUNTY THURSDAY 4/30/09

IN J’S WORDS…

Today I am a 9  out of 10.
I didn’t sleep well for the first time in a long while (praise the Lord I usually sleep well, which has been so nice for the last several weeks) but last night I think I was affected by the nap I took.  And, I kept getting hot and then cold and then hot again.  Also, I woke up with a little sore throat, so I need to take care of myself a little and see if that goes away.

We still have plenty of food around because even though we no longer need food, people have still brought things — Esther and Rick Denis and Siona and his guys, Thomas, Shon and Mark brought dessert, snacks and such, so there’s plenty to eat, and Eric is getting quite a variety in his lunch.  🙂  This evening was no exception to the overflowing bounty of goodness from the Lord and His people — Nadine brought over food from La Rhumba, and then our friends Sierra and Don popped by on their way to San Diego and brought food also.  We enjoyed a fun dinner with them, and our friend Phil Anderson also came over to hang out and joined us for dinner as well.  As Don and Sierra were leaving, Holly came home, so she joined Phil and us for hang out time, which was fun.  I also talked with Mary Chestnut on the phone — she has some family and friends going through a lot of struggles, so feel free to pray for them.

Today I read and prayed, and had an awesome time with the Lord.  I was reading about the brave and loyal mighty men who served David, ultimately a picture of our spiritual service for and worship of the Lord.  I also read about Paul’s shipwreck and journey to Rome — he always wanted to go there, but probably didn’t expect to go there as a prisoner who had been shipwrecked and bitten by a snake.  God’s plans are not ours, but He worked mightily through Paul anyway, probably more powerfully than if things had gone the way Paul had planned.  Made me think of how I never planned to have cancer, but God is still in control and has plans that are better than mine.  I’m praying for more trust in the Lord so that I can relax about how my life is going and enjoy the ride a little more.  🙂

This also reminds me of a cool conversation Sam and I were having while leaving Kaiser yesterday.  We had so much more fun with the doctor and nurses than usual (Sam especially, as she was making jokes and drawing out the fun sides of the doc and nurses, as she is sometimes wont to do). We were noting how much fun life can be when we are open and willing for it to be.  We were thinking about how the Lord really wants us to have joy and delight in Him in everything, and that even a cancer pre-operation appointment can be that way when we let it be.  It seems that trusting God as sovereign and letting go of worry is the key for me.  It also helps to be around a person like Sam who exercises her gift of engaging with people.  It was a cool lesson, and one of many from this season of cancer.

PICS

WEDNESDAY’S POST ON THURSDAY 4/29/09

Ok, so, there’s much to tell from J’s visit with the surgeon today (mostly how much fun J’s surgeon is!).
HOWEVER, it will have to wait until tomorrow.
In the meantime, here are a few thoughts from Jennene…

“turns out I was tired due to a late night and early morning, so I ended up falling asleep after reading today and have had a headache much of the day, before and after sleeping. Weird. But, I did get a chance to read and did a few things on the to do list, but still feel behind.  I hung out with Eric and we watched the Obama press conference together. I was going to leave it and do other stuff, but then I felt lame that world events “aren’t worth my time” so I stayed and watched it. That’s about all to report from the home front. I am still a 9 out of 10 on the scale of how I feel, and from today’s meeting with the nurse, it seems I’m supposed to be exercising, so… I guess I’ll need to start doing that. :)”

TASKED TUESDAY 4/28/09

In J’s Words….

Today I got up early and felt good.

MEDICAL
-I had an appointment for my regular pap smear and the N.P. also biopsied my cervix just in case.

ACTIVITIES
-Afterwards, I shopped at Trader Joes, then I came home and briefly chatted with my nice older neighbor George.
-Later I did some laundry, read and studied the Bible  and then Eric came home.
-We had company over: Siona Savini, Esther & Rick Denis, Mark Golike, Thomas Millar, and Shon Walsh.
Later Mandy Spring and Holly joined us. It was fun to hang out with everyone. They brought snacks, and Esther made berry cobbler with ice cream.
-Afterwards we spent some time talking with Holly and then watched “The Biggest Loser.”

1-10
Overall, I am still 9 out of 10, and feeling better and a little stronger. 🙂

PICS

MJ MONDAY 4/27/09

-“So today Eric went back to work, so I was up early, which is good.
-I read a little and then got interrupted by my desire to eat breakfast, so then I spent the next several hours in the kitchen — eating, preparing food & bev for Eric, cleaning out the fridge, doing dishes, organizing the pantry, etc.
It was good for me to be on my feet for a while and being semi-active (It’s like a “workout” compared to the sedentary life I usually lead).

-I called my mom and we discussed a very important topic — Survivor Tocantins.
-I spent more time reading and then had some dinner and hung out with Eric while he lesson planned.

-Later, Sam came over and we spent about 3 hours shooting the breeze.
We covered topics like her jury duty, blind faith and presuppositions, common sense, the ascension and Dr. Behle’s sermon, our pastoral staff, New Zealand, worship leading, Eric’s students, teaching, Sam’s real estate adventures, whiners/complainers/blamers, and of course, Michael Jackson.
-I learned something new about Eric — he stopped conversation to turn up the volume on the music, and to my surprise, he was turning up “Smooth Criminal” by MJ. Never did I know how much Eric liked the album “Bad.” So then we did some Wikipedia research on MJ and enjoyed listening to itunes samples of his greatest hits, such as PYT, Billie Jean, The Girl is Mine, and many others. Also we reminisced about his great album covers, including the Thriller inner-cover with him and the tiger cub. Good stuff.

Overall, I’m a 9 out of 10!!!!!!  Praise the LORD!”

PICS IN HONOR OF…

ASCENSION LESSON SUNDAY 4/26/09

HEALTH
Okay, today I feel 8.5 — digestion is almost totally fine. (maybe it WAS the yogurt! or, maybe it was Mortons…). Mouth sores are much less painful/palpable. I’m still weak in terms of muscle and stamina, but Besides that, feel pretty GREAT! Yay! PTL!

PRE & MID CHURCH

Today I got up early enough to eat breakfast on the deck, and I grabbed some lemons from the tree to share at church. We went to 2nd service and really enjoyed the worship set, and got a lot from the sermon by Dr. Greg Behle about the importance of the Ascension and time after the Resurrection.

POST CHURCH

After church Eric and I went to Subway with Adam and Megan Powell, which was a fun time getting to know them more, and especially talking about “The Biggest Loser” show on TV. We’re all fans.

POST POST CHURCH

The rest of our day was spent being productive at home. I worked on a computer project, and later I skyped Mary Chestnut — it was her birthday — and also skyped my mom. I’m getting a little buried with things I need to do because I got behind with such a busy, fun-filled weekend, but whose complaining! It was a lot of fun to be active and social for a change.

THANK YOUS!!!!

Thanks all for praying for my health! I’m feeling sooooo much better!

PICS/GIFTS FROM TODAY

SOLOIST SATURDAY 4/25/09

So today, Eric and I had some breakfast together, and then I read and spent some time on the computer.
Later we went to the movies with Sam and Adam and Megan Powell. We saw the Soloist, a thought-provoking and touching drama.
We decided we should hang out afterwards so we could debrief and actually talk together, so we decided on picking up frozen yogurt and heading to the Powells.
Eric and I were introduced by everyone to Yogurberry, and it was a good introduction. Yum!
Then we hung out and talked about the movie and then other things at the Powells, and Megan also gave me the tour of their place. It was a fun day!

I felt a lot better today and think my digestive issues are affecting me much less today.
I had pretty good energy, so I’d give myself an 8 out of 10. 🙂
I look forward to church tomorrow.