O2 4 Life!


I’m getting so used to the oxygen cannula on my face, I barely notice it anymore. It’s part of me now. Still annoying most times but it helps. I had a friend who hasn’t seen me in a while ask if now I look like one of those “little old people carrying their oxygen around”? I can honestly say, no! I don’t look old, little, well that’s another issue! But I definitely don’t think I look old with my O’s. Guess that’s why it’s so shocking for people to see me. Strangers stare cause you don’t expect it. When I have it off I don’t look sick at all. Makes ya wonder how many others suffer some kind of chronic invisible illness they just don’t tell anyone about.


Up and up…down and out but coming back up swinging! 

The past week is been rough, I just haven’t felt good since Sunday. I’ve had more shortness of breath, I haven’t been sleeping well and even though it sounds weird, I just feel like my heart is too big for my body. It’s hard to explain but it just beats too hard. Guess it’s disappointing that I’ve been feeling better the past month and now feel like shit again.  I went to see my pulmonary htn doc. He sent me for an echo. Just heard that the echo was fine but there may be some fluid in my lungs. So had to go get a chest X-ray today. I tell ya, it’s a good thing I am not working cause having a chronic illness is a full time job in its self! Well, the X-ray checked out fine too. Which is all good, don’t get me wrong! I’m happy I just wish I knew what is causing the changes.  Maybe it’s just the disease. It’s a tease when I feel good. Like I think that maybe I’ll feel good always. Kinda like you don’t really notice your teeth until you have a toothache.

In other news, I’ve decided this is the year of the concerts for me!  So I’m looking for some shows for April to fill up that month hopefully in Portland! Let me know if you hear of anything!

Oh one last thing to throw a wrench in my emotions.  When I saw my pulmonary doc he said he wanted to send my records to one more place regarding transplant. Remember my last post talked about getting turned down by three places and I made peace with it? Well, Dr. J went to a conference in San Diego recently and wants some of the cardiothoracic surgeons he met to take a look.  It can’t hurt right? I honestly do not think the answer will be different but whatever. I also admire and love that he doesn’t want to give up. So yeah, of coarse I gave him the go ahead.  Who knows, even if they say no about transplant, maybe they will have other options on treatment for me.

With all that I’ve been through in my life I’ve learned that no matter what, life is too short. So I’m doing my best to live in the moment. I try not to think ahead too much. I try not to look back, but put my attention on the here and now. So eat your dessert first, drink all the wine and go to every concert you desire!

Still I breathe with broken lungs.

Inhale breaths feel unsatisfying

Exhale just to inhale again 

Continue on each day breathing

Beats pounding with blue hues

These are not the blues I find solace, those are your eyes

Well, it’s official.  I have fully run out of options for a lung transplant.  University of Utah finally got back to me last week.  Fact is, I am just NOT a candidate.  I have too much damage  from radiation and was told that removing my lungs would be nearly impossible due to the scar tissue.  Was I upset about this?  Hell yes I was upset!  I cried big ‘ole tears by myself.  I wasn’t crying  because I could not have a transplant though.  Truth is, I wasn’t sure I would even want that.  It’s a HUGE surgery, not to mention life long commitment, a lot of medications and risky thing to undergo in it’s self.  I cried because I no longer have the option.  My lungs will just continue to decline in function from here on out.

If you are wondering if I am depressed stop.  I am not.  I haven’t lost hope either.  On the contrary, I have never been happier.  I feel lucky to even be sitting here breathing.  Overcoming childhood cancer and all of it’s struggles has taught me that there is no time like the present.  After all, it could always be worse.  I should have died many times before, in fact I did but I’ll save that story for another time.

This past three months have been interesting and a roller coaster of emotions but I am finally at peace.  I am finally able to just relax and enjoy the moment and that in turn has made me feel great!  Not having to struggle everyday to get to work has made a huge difference in my health.  I can now take my time getting up, ensuring I am taking my medications regularly and eating right.  I have the energy to do things I want to do and spend time with my friends and family.  I have even felt good enough to take the dogs on short walks to the dog park with my oxygen in tow.  I can rest all day and go see concerts in the evening and get into shenanigans again! 🙂   I am heading to Seattle this month to see Smashing Pumpkins, will see The Reverend Horton Heat next week and bought tickets to The Violent Femmes!  So while I may struggle some days and my lungs are assholes, I still breathe!