Thursday, August 28, 2008

A new hair style

Hana was having some fun with her camera. She didn't tell me it was on at first. That's why there's a lull at the beginning. Enjoy.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Eyes Wide Open

As you all must know by now, and if you don't you need to work on your memory retention skills, I got a new Ipod a while back and I have been loading it up with podcasts. I love the fact that I can listen to these programs anytime I want and learn something new everyday.

One of my favorite podcasts, or favourite for those of you in England, is WNYC's Radio Lab. It's about an hour long or so and they talk about very interesting things in the realm of science and human interaction and why we do what we do. I listened to several of them this Monday as I drove, had them all lined up, and one in particular threw me for a loop. Not the program so much as it was what I heard an interviewee say.

The discussion was about Morality, where does our sense of right and wrong come from? And the hosts referred back to the final episode of M.A.S.H.. SPOILER ALERT; In case you haven't seen the final episode that was broadcast about 24 years ago, I'll set the scene.
Hawkeye, played by Alan Alda, is telling some of his experiences to the visiting psychiatrist, Major Sidney Freedman, and he recalls an incident where he is hiding on a bus with a number of other people, all from one village. The enemy is approaching outside, and if they hear the people in the bus they will come in and kill them all. One woman has a baby that won't stop crying. Hawkeye keeps telling her to make the baby be quiet, and her final solution to the crying baby is to smother her own child. Hawkeye finally 'remembers' what she did in a fit of anguish.

So on the podcast this question is posed to a number of people "on the street"; in this circumstance, could you or would you smother your own child, in order to save the whole village of people trapped in this bus?

Now before I go on, a little about me and my family. My wife is adamantly Anti-Abortion. She cannot accept any reason that would allow an abortion to be justified, including saving her own life. Me, not quite so much. It's probably due to the fact that I'm not a woman and therefore have no "motherly" instincts regarding the baby, but I think if her life were in danger, I may consider aborting the child to save her life. I say "may" because I know she would fight me on this. So this is where our family stands on abortion. But this is not a debate or a discussion about abortion. I say those things so you know where we come from. No we go on...

Again, the question was posed to a number of people and various responses were heard. Yes, no, I don't know...and most folks elaborated a little bit on why they felt the way they did. And then I heard one woman say this, "Yes, I could do that. That's my baby and I have the right to terminate that life if I want to."


I have heard that statement made regarding the issue of abortion and I make no further comment about that here at this time. But I have never heard this spoken regarding a child who has been born and is out among the living and breathing. So I rewind. Did I really hear her say what I think I heard her say?

Yes, I did.

Now, I'm wondering something? Have you ever heard this sentiment expressed before regarding children that have already been born? I know that there are all kinds of people in this world with many differing opinions, and that China has developed different feelings about baby girls than they do baby boys, mostly because of China's one child policy. But we as average, everyday, normal American's, do we really feel that because a child is our child, that we have the "right" to terminate that life? I know that it would not be an easy thing to do, to smother your own child under those circumstances, but I think it was her tone and her word usage that threw me. She seemed quite absolute in her statement. "Yes! It's my baby and I have the right to terminate that life if I choose."

Maybe she was caught off guard and wished later that she had used different words. Maybe she misunderstood the question. Maybe she really feels that way. I don't know. Again, this is not a discussion about abortion, because I think we can all agree that this child would not be "aborted", but would be "killed". But I cannot wrap my mind around the idea that because a child is mine, I have the right to terminate it's life. And believe me, there certainly were some days that I longed for that right, that's for sure.

Anyway, I had a hard time with that. Maybe some of you will not have as hard a time with that, maybe some of you will have a harder time than I did. Regardless, it was an interesting podcast.

Oh...what would I do you ask? I don't know, but I doubt very seriously I could smother my own child to save a village. I'm glad I don't have to answer that question for real. And I'm sure my children are glad as well.

I promise not to be so serious next post. Maybe.

Day 16,725

Isaac has his pump "installed"(?) and is loving it. I think this is going to work.

Ben tells me that one, maybe two, more quarters and he's going to OSU at Columbus. So he'll be moving out. I'll miss him, I'm sure.

Sheila got three, yeah, I said three, tattoos today. Seems the radiation people have to put three little dots on her in order to line up their machine correctly, and those dots are permanent. They're about the size of a pencil point.

No police at the house last night, that was a good thing.

My boss had me fix a problem at work I screwed up. Seems I billed a broker with two invoices that had the same invoice number on them although they were for two different backhauls. Add to that the confusion that both dollar amounts were the same and both included 2.5 hours of detention pay. The broker saw the same invoice number again and figured they'd already paid it. I got it fixed. Hopefully.

I need a shower.

Did I say no police at the house last night? Yeah, I see that. I did.

My neighbor put two signs in his front yard, in Burma Shave fashion, one after the other.
Sign #1: "Whoever stole my ladder"
Sign #2: "I hope you fall off!"
I asked him that afternoon if he needed to borrow a ladder, which was very nice on my part since I don't own a ladder. But the guy across the street does and I figured I could ste...borrow his.
He said, "No, I just can't find it. I don't need one right now. Thanks anyway."
I come home the next day from shooting cows at the Roller Skating Rink and the signs are gone. His wife is in the yard.
"Hi Marcy. Did someone bring your ladder back?"
She laughs. "No, Mike's an idiot. Seems he left it behind the other neighbors house in their back yard while he was trimming their bushes for them. He got distracted and forgot about it." The funny thing is he's been looking for it for two weeks and his neighbor has just been moving it around so he can mow around it. I love this town.

That's it for now. I need to go help Ben pack. Why wait til the last minute?

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Been Too Long

Did I say I missed all you folks? It seems like it's been way too long since I've posted anything. It's not like there's really that much going on.

All is going well. Sheila starts radiation treatments next week and the prognosis is very good. There really shouldn't be any problems.

Isaac got his insulin pump in the mail this week and we are waiting for him to get out of the shower so I can get in and then we're going in to Mansfield for a training session on how to use it. I really think this is going to make a big difference in his diabetes management. The doc seems to think so as well.

Sheila's van was finally fixed so now she can't borrow her mom's new Impala anymore and ride around in a nice air-conditioned car. It's back to her van in which the air-conditioning is on strike. She said it's ok. She just drives faster and gets the wind blowing through.

Hana and Ben are getting ready to get back into the groove of college life and Preston is chomping at the bit to get into second grade. Isaac, well, let's just say his excitement regarding school is still in the development stage. Our new foster son just left a little bit ago for a home visit and he'll be back on Tuesday.

Sorry bout that. It's now evening...about 11 hours after I started this post. Isaac learned all about his pump. I couldn't keep up but the nurse assistant said kids learn it a whole lot easier than adults do. It's like a new video game to them. He was pushing buttons faster than she could follow. He certainly lives by his dad's process of learning new technologies. "Push buttons until something happens."

Right now he's just carrying it around, entering the numbers that he normally would so he can get used to how it works. Monday they'll hook it up and he'll run saline through it for a day or so and then start running insulin through it. It's amazing the technology that they've come out with. His glucometer, the new one that came with the pump, automatically "beams" the number for his blood sugar to the pump so the pump knows what to do with the sugar reading. There is a sensor attachment that is a separate order that gives a continuous blood sugar reading by automatically testing his blood sugar every five minutes. But the docs don't want to use it just yet, plus it costs another $1000, plus insurances are just now starting to cover it and ours hasn't gotten on the train yet. Maybe soon.

After that was over, we stopped for lunch and came home for a nap. Felt like Sunday. I just woke up. Another day gone.

So that's it. Life in the fast lane.

I asked my wife, "Why don't we ever do anything exciting like other people?"

She said, "We can't fit it on the schedule."

There you go.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

The Ta Ta Update

Ok. I know you have all been waiting with baited breath for the update so here it is.

Sheila, our daughter Hana, Sheila's best friend Melinda, and I all went together to the James Cancer Center in Columbus. No problems getting there, even though Melinda asked if I wanted to borrow her GPS. I said, "I don't need no stinkin' GPS", while wearing my sombrero and bandoleers.

Very nice facitlity and the nurses were fabulous. Very compassionate and understanding. Amy was by far the funniest and friendliest. The doctor, not so much. As a matter of fact, we all found him a bit rude. I personally think he was just covering his butt. Or maybe he was having a bad day. Maybe his dog peed on his persian rug this morning, or the heated cup holder in his Beemer wouldn't work. I don't know. But I have a hard time trusting a doctor that won't look you in the eye.

But the news was good. He said the margins were good on the mass that was removed and he did not recomend a mastectomy, although I think Sheila had geared herself up to be ready for that eventuality. He said that we shoudl proceed with radiation treatments and that if coming off the estrogen was going to be a problem then she should not take the Anti-estrogen therapy. They are nor dependent on one another.

So there we are. Sounds good. After he left the room, his nurse Amy stayed behind and was very understanding with Sheila's concern. I have always thought, and this just reinforces my beliefs, that the nurses are the real healers in the medical world.

So here's to you all and stay safe and get that Mammygrammy done, unless off course your a man. Then go get that other thing done. You know. The one we all fear? But men, do you know why we fear that exam so much? We're afraid we might enjoy it too much. Then what would that say about us? Bite the bullet, get in the car, take the bullet in with you, and when you here that glove snap on, bite the bullet again. You'll feel better later. But at least you'll feel better.

Saturday, August 2, 2008


I noticed on an earlier post of mine that Dant made a comment about a song that I was listening to and that he felt it wasn't a "One Hit Wonder". I responded with the fact that I am not very familiar with individuals names as much as I am the names of bands themselves. Then I got to looking and it seems that we were both confused. Dant thought I was talking about the song "All She Wants to do is Dance" by Don Henley, as he pointed out a core founding member of The Eagles. When in reality I was talking about the song "All she wants to do is Dance" written by Melvin Hammerschlein and sung by his group Melvin and the Hammers. Yes, I know. It's hard to believe that there is such a group, and it's true that they are very obscure. So obscure in fact that one needs an extremely strong search engine to find anything about them on the internet. Google won't do it. I recently had to hack into the Cray12 that is used by the NSA in order to find the last album art work that they did for the album "koalas and crayfish, love em and eat em".

Their music is mostly New Age Alternative Polka music and their origins of Latvia really show through in their use of tubas and glockenspiels. Amazing style, though. Give them a try, if you can find them.

I went to the pool today. It was a nice day, not too hot, and I figured since I hadn't gone all summer today was as good a day as any. I did notice that I needed to tan a little more when a lifegaurd told me that white t-shirts were not allowed to be worn in the pool.

"I'm not wearing a shirt", I said.



"Oh. Okay. Sorry."

Maybe I should buy that tan in a bottle stuff. And some guy named Quiquay or something kept following me around the pool.

Worked on my check book today and got that all straightened out. Then I had to borrow two Vicodin from my wife after that was over. Whew! That wasn't pretty. We can't keep a checkbook to save our lives. Maybe one day before we die we'll have it all straightened out. In the meantime, I'll just continue to live life on the edge.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Back Again.

We're back. Again, things could have been better. Sheila has now been referred to the James Cancer Center at OSU to talk with them about her options. The pathologists report indicated "multiple focal points" meaning there are more places in her tissue that have not reached the level of the mass that they removed but could be on their way to DCIS. Her tissue is abnormal.If she does nothing then there is a 30% chance that it will progress to invasive cancer. Radiation and hormone therapy will reduce that but the hormone therapy is "Anti-estrogen" which scares her. She's afraid that would send her into menopause and emotionally put her where she was before she had her hysterectomy. A mastectomy would reduce the risk greatly, but reconstruction could be difficult. So that's where we stand. She has an appointment right now for August 12 to go to James Cancer Center and if they have an opening earlier they'll let her know.

Ever get the feeling that you're spending way too much time in the doctor's office? It's been that way lately. It's getting old. My mind is so focused on these things that I can't even come up with a good lie to blog about. How sad is that?!

Maybe next week.