Tuesday, 1 August 2017

Love, Lakes and Insanity

It's remarkable how life can pack the punches and the hugs all at the same time.  Since my last post, it's really been a bizarre mixture of insanity, love, lakes and more insanity.  I had the incredible pleasure of seeing in person so many of my "bubble" of energy people, and words truly cannot describe the intensity of love I have experienced.  At the moment, issues with my eyes also make creating and typing words a significant challenge. So I'm not going to try.  I'll just provide some photos and an insane health update.

July 14 insanity, After a terribly insane day July 14, I left for Penticton July 15 and did enjoy three lovely days with my oldest (friendship not age) friend Shelley, enjoying sunsets, sips and memories.  Before I boarded the plane on the 15th, I noticed a very slight issue with my left eye where I felt like the "refocus" of it was a fraction of a second longer than the right.

The eye issue while mild continued to into the following week when mom and I flew to Regina on the 20th.  That trip was filled with incredible moments as well including lots of rest, chill time, extraordinary eats, and overall amazing moments with loved ones and friends.  Mom and I counted over 45 of the Antonini group who "stopped by" to see my at my cousin Sonia's (long drives firetrucks, and Scotland flight changes included in the many surprise visitors) - overwhelming doesn't really cover it.  I had had a few bouts of vomiting earlier in the day but for the evening managed to enjoy the love.

Friday morning us Gunn girls made our way to the beautiful Qu'Appelle valley for our lake experience - Mireya's visual depiction of the weekend really says it all.  Ellen's cabin has been evolving since our last visit a few summers ago and provided truly as relaxing and wonderful place of wellness with so many of my closest hearts holding me up.  I did call into my oncologist back in Calgary (Dr. Nixon covering for Dr. Stewart over summer) to update my eye symptoms, and after some miracle-working collaboration by SK docs/family and her started taking some dexamethasone steroids on the 21st with the goal of managing the eye issues.  The weekend wrapped up in fine form - certainly some of the best moments I had in past months despite the eye challenges - and I even got a quick visit in with another old friend before we flew back Tues night.  That day I had reconnected as well with Dr. Nixon, who upon hearing the eye issues had not been fully resolved, had consulted our radiogology team, and an urgent MRI was booked for Thurs the 27th as well as direction to double up the daily dex dose.

July 31 insanity. Yesterday during an afternoon nap Dr. Nixon called my cell phone to find out if the upped dex had addressed my symptoms (not really - no worsening but not resolved).  She had been able to read the Thurs scan, which seemed to indicate that there was some development of lesions (or something like that) along the meninges - lining of the brain - that may be causing my symptoms. Obviously I need to see radiology for the full interpretation, but unfortunately Dr. Veroney had suddenly passed away (!?) so she had spoken to Dr Robert Nordal, another radiology oncologist and I should be hearing from his office about a consultation appointment next week.  Before they see me, they would like to have me do a spinal MRI to check the status of any metastases there (my quick google search of meninges does support their logic to checking the spine).  She also asked me to again double the dex dose for 2 days (now up to 8 mg/day) and call her Wednesday with an update on symptom progress.

So once again I am stunned, with more questions than answers, and I would say that I have a bit more fear again - certainly different than Unit 11 but fear nonetheless.  I hate to report the insanity and have it cast a shadow over the love of the last 2 weeks, but I know you get it.  And the pics capture a bit of the immense good smashed between the insanity.

Penticton skies
Shelley and I 

Surprise appearance from Louise
Uncle Len stops in from the truck

Lovely ladies make the trip
Incredible hostess Sonia
Three wise guys

Three amigos - we look no older?

Mireya captures the weekend plan

Divine dockside
Captain Ellen
Gunn girls take the farmers' market

Creative cousins

Kindergarten pals


Sonia Banin said...

Hello! Mixed emotions as I read rhus. As always I admire your positivity and the ability to add a "feel good" side to your recap of your last few weeks! It was great to get so many people together and LOVE the pictures that captured so many happy moments and smiles 🤗
As your wait for your consult your bubble is right there with you 💟💟

Love Sonia

Tony Antonini said...

Dear Tricia
Sonia's message said it all💖💖
Love Tony & Carol

BJ said...

Dear Tricia,
As you wait for more tests and consults, we continue to keep you in our thoughts and prayers. The pictures were wonderful, and I loved your captions--so clever and funny. They capture your spirit and joie de vive perfectly.
Love and prayers, BJ

Mary Ellen said...

Dear Tricia,
Thanks for the update and pictures of your trips. It is wonderful to see you with so many of your family and friends.
Like Sonia, I also have mixed emotions. And like BJ, we continue to keep you in our thoughts and prayers.

Love you lots,
Mary Ellen & Bob

Heather Antonini said...

I find one of our biggest challenges in this humans experience is to stay in the moment, not leaping to conclusions or imagining catastrophes that more often than not never come to pass. Some days it's harder than others, and some days it's damn near impossible. Right now I imagine you're in the midst of one of those latter times, wanting to stay present and positive, but feeling the weight of uncertainty at every turn. I hope these periods of insanity are peppered generously with moments of relief when you find yourself firmly rooted in the present, surrounded and supported by your bubble of love.
Sending an extra shot of energy your way today,

Louise and David said...

💌Dear Tricia,
You have so much confidence in us as part of your team🎽! We get quite emotional when you speak of us as your "bubble of energy people"🎈 and describe how your closest hearts are holding you up💞. At a time when we feel powerless, you praise us for supporting you👋; then you tell it like it is because you believe we "get it"👍. Thank you😍!

❓Do you know how amazing it is when you deal with insanity one day and the very next afternoon, board a plane to be with a dear friend✈; when you suffer bouts of nausea in the morning and are the life of the party that same night🌉; when you seek medical advice across the miles and are still able to share dockside delights with those closest to you🍹?

📷Your pictures take us with you on your most recent travels to Penticton, Regina and the Qu'Appelle Valley. And you're right, Mireya's drawing does say it all🎨 - the best moments in life are those we spend just being with the people who love and understand us💕. In this case, the image of the boat is perfect🚢!

⛅Far from casting a shadow over the love of the past two weeks, you have skillfully mixed the punches with the hugs and proven it is possible to experience immense good in the midst of frightful insanity🌌.

We do "get it"💡, Tricia, and we hope you are able to tap into the abundant light, energy and love we will be sending your way minute by minute, hour by hour and day by day⚡.

💌With big hugs,
Louise and David

Bonnie Antonini said...

Dear Tricia,
i can only reiterate what has been said in the above posts. It was wonderful to see you! We have you in our thoughts and prayers💕
We love you tons💕

Fareeha Khan said...

Tricia - you are such an inspiration - there is a saying about grabbing life by the throat and shaking it - that's what you do. Sending lots of love and prayers your way.

Marcia said...

Hi Tricia, Thanks for the update and the pictures. I just returned from a week in the east and had a brief visit with Colleen, who brought me up to date with more details of your visit to Saskatchewan. Keeping you in my thoughts and prayers as always and feeling grateful for the grace you bring to my life!

Lots of love,

Marcia xo

ed said...

Hi Tricia,

Sometimes when I'm thinking of you. I remember the little girl I fell in love with watching her play with my own little girls. It is a love that has been with me throughout my life. Deanie and I send our best wishes,love and prayers.

Uncle Ed