Monday, April 15, 2013

Its Back...

Well, after a relatively blissful 4.5 years, the cancer is back.

Kind of saw that coming with the substantial amount of stress i was going through following a series of unfortunate incidents over the last 2 months. Stress is afterall the catalyst of my relapse in 2007.

Its either the cancer or my failing heart that will eventually get me, but I am surprise that the heart held up better than the cancer.

I did the half yearly scans 2 weeks back. Sadly the last scan shows that there are 2 new lesions on my spine. That makes it 3 lesions on my spine. I just hope that the spine is continue to hold up my body, while I am still kicking. I feel like I still have so much to do, to see, to experience

So, I am now on a new course of drugs since Femara is now no longer able to control the cancer. I am now on Aromasin. Didn't take to the drugs too well initially, but its getting better. I do feel bouts of extreme lethargy that I just have to lie down and close my eyes in the afternoon. And when I am awake, I move like the sloth, haha. But like I say, its getting better. I move a little faster than that now.

And so, my sucky life goes on. Looking forward to my next vacation before my spine crumbles
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Monday, September 10, 2012

Thru' the years...To be Continued

Oh how my little girl has grown...
Click to play this Smilebox slideshow


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Thursday, July 5, 2012

Hanging Out on the Plateau

Its been 6 months since I had this new installation in my body, and I was scheduled for the check to look for new revelation on the status of my well-being.

I have been feeling pretty well, not fabulous, but reasonably well. And so, with much enthusiasim, I went to receive the results from my heart doc a couple of days back. 

Have you had one of those days as a student when you were super confident that you will aced your exams, and then to receive one of those blah results. Well, its like deja vu for me.  It happened to me before, and it happened again, but this time round as a patient receiving my examination results more crucial than the PSLE, "Ö"and A Levels.  Its the results that will determine not only my future, but the possibility of ever having a future.

I was kind of expecting better than great kind of results, and then lo and behold, the results was really just .... (drum roll, please) blah!  Thats right, there was no improvement in the EF reading,  It was kind of a crushing moment, as i was hoping that the ICD would have improve my heart function.  Alas, the results were the same as that as I had before I had the surgery in January 2012. Yup, no change in EF reading...still at 29%.  Well, I am hoping to hang around on the plateau even if there is no upward climb. 

I am not sure whats my prognosis like. The heart doc will not give me a number.  Just as well, i guess. There's not much information I could googled about my condition.  If you know of any blog or medication publication that will provide an insight, let me know :)

On a happier note, I am officially a 9 year old cancer survivor!! yeah!!

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Friday, April 27, 2012

Thank God!

I found this Poster Print on Pinterest.  How apt, I thought. I will be turning a year older pretty soon!! Hey, glad to be still around!  Didn't think I would still be around back then.  Thank God!

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Maid in Singapore

After many many years of being without a helper at home, we are finally caving in, and have now joined the many many families in Singapore with live-in help.  Yes, we are now awaiting the arrival of our newly hired helper who will be living under the same roof as us with effect from the month of May.

It is with much anxiety and anticipation that we are looking forward to the helper's arrival.  The last time we had a helper was way back in 2003, when i was going thru'chemotheraphy, and i figured I needed help with the chores and watching my then 2 year old.  Alas, it was more heartache than help i had during the short duration of 2 months she was with us.  And so, the helper packed up and went home, and I had managed to live without a helper since then.

I guess the situation is a little different now.  I do have to admit that I am not as energetic as I was 9 years back.  I am unable to do any chores for a prolonged period of time. I would scrubed one bathroom, and it would seem like i had just ran a marathon. Ironing tires me up, so I am just limiting to ironing Nic's uniform and a couple of Mike's work shirts.  I could still live in crumpled tees. Not to mention changing the bedsheets. I just found up from this article in Yahoo that the sheets have to be changed on a weekly basis. Yikes!! Not saying how long I have been lounging on mine.

And so we are praying fervantly that she will be a help to us, that she will be able to accommodate us as much as we can accommodate her.

Till my next post. Peace

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Saturday, February 4, 2012

Running on Batteries

And so the surgery went without a hitch, other than a brief couple of minutes when i woke up in the middle of surgery and hearing the surgeons talking and the beeping of machines that i am wired to. Well, that freaked me out quite a bit, and i burst into tears! Pretty embaressing, thinking about it now, but i was promptly knocked out again with more Propofol because of my distress.

Anyway, since i have been fitted with the device, life seems to be a little better, a little rosier. I could drink a bit more water without gagging and feeling nasaues, I could walk a little bit more before needing to sit down and rest, i could do a bit more packing and unpacking without breaking out into a major sweating. Essentially, I am feeling less of an 80 year old. Maybe a 70 year old. There are still limitations. I still break out into major sweating and become breathless when i am low on sugar. I still cannot carry a conversation while walking uphill. I turn blue, apparently. Its definitely not Energizer batteries that i am fitted with. I don't feel like a bunny at all!

Anyway, the true verdict will come in April when i will go for another ECG to determine if I am responding to the device.

And so fingers crossed, hope and pray that this will work. I don't wish to join the queue for the broken-hearted waiting and praying for a healthy heart in a broken body to come their way.

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Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Did i mention that i am getting new titanium implants?

Ok, so i didn't get the implants in October 2011. By some strange twist of events, the operation was cancelled, and because my holiday schedule clashes with the surgeon's busy year end calendar, the surgery was postponed to.....gasp! 05 Jan 2012!! Glad i didn't suffer a "sudden cardiac death" while waiting...

It was nerve racking, initially. I wasn't too sure if I wanted to go ahead with the crazy holiday plans that we made months ago before i was aware of my situation. We were heading to Taiwan for 10 days in November and Hong kong for 4 days in December, and there were two staycations in between. I would suffer major losses if i were to cancel these trips. Too late to cancel. I wasn't too sure if i wanted to be caught in a situation either while in a foreign land. With the issue of breathlessness, i wasn't too sure if it will be safe to fly. What happens if i collapse? Will i be saved in time? So many questions, so many fears!!

With the doctor's name card, medication, a printout of my medical history in my bag, and faith in God, we decided to packed our bags and go ahead with our vacation plans.

I guess the mind is the strangest of all things. And of course, the power of prayers. I made it through these trips and back, and feeling better than ever. Perhaps its the worry free days of reckless shopping, dining, sight seeing and great company...Perhaps I am away from the stress of our daily routine, the renovation problems ... Or perhaps, its just not my time yet.

I am glad we went ahead with the plans despite the risk, and i could gladly say that the days spent on vacation will be cherished memories.

And so, tomorrow will marked another new chapter in my with a defillabrator with the hope of buying some more time. Hope its a worthwhile purchase!

Happy New Year Everyone!! Hope it has been a good start to 2012. It has been for me. I am still feeling the adrenaline rush :)

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Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Revisiting - Going for New Implants

Its been a while since i visited or made an entry here. There were attempts to do so during the past one year to sit down and pen my thoughts. But words do not flow too easily these days. Guess i have been bitten by the Writer's Block.

The last few months had been really really crazy. We finally ... after a long delay of 1 year and a massive massive clean-up, got started on the renovation works at my mum's place. Yes, it is way overdued, and through the tears, angry words and drama, the place is finally ready to be renovated. It is no easy task getting there, with almost 20 years worth of stuff, clothing, junk and what mum calls treasures and memories. Mum is a hoarder, and that explains the drama that have been going on for the past couple of months.

Through it all, we did find a stack of letters that Dad wrote to her when he was working overseas, while Mum, as a new mother, stayed on in Singapore. Those letters, yellowed with age, and somewhat brittle, brought back a flood of memories as Mum reads them over again. She found comfort and solace reading them as she felt Dad's concern and love through the words he penned so many years ago.

I found many letters and cards from my dear friends who would drop me a letter periodically during those days they were overseas. I used to look forward to receving their letters, and enjoyed reading about their days in the university and what they have been up to. I guess in this day of electronic age, hardly anyone writes a letter or sends a card. Nothing beats the feeling of holding those hand-written letters in pretty stationery, and the anticipation and delight of receiving them in the postbox. And its also a good excuse to stock up on all those pretty paper and envelopes and stickers.

Health wise, i am not sure if i am doing too well. About 2 months back (August), i had some episodes of breathlessness, and while sleeping, i vividly remembered being out of breath and gasping for air. It felt like a nightmare, but i awoke still feeling breathless and perspiring.
I brought up this issue to the Docs in NUH whom i am under their care. Foreign talent doctor listened intently and increased my dosage for some medicine. Check my blood pressure, gave me new prescriptions, and bid me goodbye - we will see you in 6 months time.

The breathlessness didn't go away. I still have those bad dreams and waking up gasping for air.
And so, i decided to listen to that little voice in my head, and made an appointment to see another Doc at the National Heart Centre. I cannot wait another 6 months, can i afford to? And the little voice in my head has proved itself right again. Things are not looking too good. The echo done last year has a EF reading of 38% (moderate), but its condition has decline to 29%. A normal person has a EF reading of 40-50%. In Doc's words, i am at risk for "sudden cardiac death". er....i wasn't really expecting that. I didn't even come prepared with the extra pair of ears (my hubby) to listen to him say that. And so , i receive the news ... alone...

I was pretty calm, and there were no tears. It was like deva ju yet again. The Doc was kind, and his tone was calm, when he delivered the verdict, but I guess whichever way he delivers the news, bad news is still bad news.

And so, the Docs have recommended that that I get an ICD (Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator) implantation. Its a small device, the size of a pager with wires threaded through the veins into the heart. It will help stimulate the heart to restore a normal rhythm, and will give an electric shock to reset the heartbeat if the heart stops beating. macham like battery.

I will be going for the procedure next week. I have been waiting anxiously for the past 2 weeks. I was so afriaid that something will happen before i could go for the procedure. It will be very "sway" if it did. And so i have been trying to be very very calm. Didn't let the little things ruffle my feathers.

So now, praying that the procedure will be successful. Pray i don't get a heart attack while on the opearting table (10%) and that the doc can find the vital veins to hook up the wires (some 5% folks do not have that vein, according to docs. i hope i am not one of them)

And so, i will be out of action at Little Gems for a while, while i get my new implants....a battery operated heart (?)

PS. If you are a family friend or relative reading this blog, please do not ask my mum about my condition. My exact condition has been sugar-coated, so she does not know the full extent.

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