Day 197 – the ‘chemo room’ edition

I am feeling a little better today. It looks like the heat wave is finally packing up and leaving. Even though we have a/c, it’s still a major pain in the ass to have to  go out in it.

Screen Shot 2018-07-30 at 6.25.14 PM

I had to go for my blood work today. Because I have a port, I can go when I want up to 2 pm. I love my port. It makes everything to do with getting things in and out so much easier. Here are some pics of the empty chemo room. I think we are fortunate in Maple Ridge that it is one of the nicer ones in the region. Although, I haven’t seen them all or any for that matter!



And me!

July 30, 2018

Day 195 – the ‘Doug Ford’ edition

So, I would be remiss if I didn’t start with Doug Ford. Ontario, give your heads a collective shake! What the fuck have you done? You have always been the stable centre of our country. While Quebec tries to separate, Alberta having a terrible twos hissy fit over their pipeline and a federal government far more concerned with image than substance. We used to be able to count on you, Ontario.1 Mike Harris was all austerity all the time but at least that kind of made sense even if he did copy his ideas from other governments. At least Harris was smart enough to know that he wasn’t that smart.

Enter Doug Ford. Everyone knows that Doug was not the brains of the Ford family dynasties: labels or political. Ford became premier through an absolute comedy of errors. Kathleen Wynne’s incompetence and Andrea Horvath’s complete unlikeability. When will the NDP replace her as leader? She’s lost 2 elections she should have won. Why is she still there.

Let’s talk about Ford’s treatment of his sister-in-law, Renata Ford.2 The family doesn’t have enough money to survive. All he has to do is give them a disbursement from the will. It seems like the Ford family wants to see her lose everything so she has to start over. She is certainly entitled to Rob’s share of that business, especially after the hell he put her through in their marriage. I hope once this is over and done with she writes a tell-all book and makes some serious cash.

Now, let’s talk about the sex ed curriculum roll back. Is Ford that stupid to think you can pull information back? Has he met the internet? Does he not think kids already know the score? They sure has hell know more than ’tab a goes into slot b’.

The thing about Doug Ford is that he is a vengeful man. Why else would he slash the size of the Toronto City Council. I am sure he’s hoping that some of his nemesis will be taken down in the process. Both Doug and Rob Ford looked at Toronto City Council as their personal fiefdoms, I am not surprised that Doug Ford can not let it go.

Ontario is certainly in for a rocky 4-year ride. Don’t worry, we will welcome you into the fold of sanity once he’s done. I predict that Doug Ford’s time in office will end with an increase in the deficit/debt.

July 28, 2018


  1. We will forgive you the Bob Rae NDP government after all he has repented and become a Liberal elder statesman. ↩︎
  2. Rob Ford’s wife. ↩︎


A new feature here at The Swamp

So, I don’t know about you but I am getting a little tired of the recent programming of cancer all the time. Once upon a time I used to do some political blogging. And with Ontario electing Doug Ford where should I start??

I will do this extra feature as I am able or combine with the #365feministselfie post.

Day 193

Cancer is a bitch. I never really know from day to the next how I am going to feel or if I will be able to eat. I need to sleep and rest throughout the day. But I also have things I have to do and things I want to do. I think I finally figured out a few things that are making things a little easier:

  • Ensure stimulates my appetite. So having some mid-afternoon seems to help me to be able to eat dinner.
  • I need to impose a rest period where I lay back with my headphones and listen to music.
  • I cannot plan too much in a day. A few things here and there seem to work well for me.
  • I need to eat dinner in stages. Yesterday, I had some beef and then an hour later a yam. That worked well.
  • The big thing is that I have to go to bed before I get too tired or it is way too hard to do the things I need to before bed.

Regardless, cancer sucks and it’s tough. All those shows you see of cozy chemo rooms on tv, where people pass on sacred blankets to each other. In my chemo room, there is space between the chairs so that the nurses can work.1 I have also yet to meet the fatherly like oncologist, who allows you to call him anytime.2 The Oncologist™ I have probably kill me if I used his precious phone unless I was dying. So, basically, it’s not to be used.

There’s lots I could say about the side effects. Many of them are similar to ulcerative colitis only magnified. I feel like I am at an advantage here because I have dealt with ulcerative colitis and know what to do when things really go south. The one that’s making me the most crazy right now is my sore and bleeding nose. However, the fatigue is crushing. If I do not get upstairs before the fatigue hits, just getting up the stairs is really hard. If I then add on other tasks that have to be done it takes a long time and it’s very difficult. At least sleep mostly comes easy.

  1. Think of Parenthood when Christina gets breast cancer. ↩︎
  2. I can’t think of any female motherly oncologists on TV. ↩︎
July 26, 2018

Day 192

July 25, 2018

Well, my hair is falling out. My towel was full of it this morning. Cancer milestone reached. Now, can I lose the hair I don’t want?

I tried to get Stevie into my picture today which was only mildly successful.

IMG_4061 (1)
A bit better picture of Stevie


Day 191

Well today was chemo day. Already my counts are too low for a full dose so it was reduced by 20% because my neutrophils were too low I sure hope it means 20% less side effects.

I am really feeling low these days. I am not sure what the point is of putting this poison in my body. I am sure that I am not the only one who asks the question. At some point, I know that there will be an end to what I can take. Not a good day.

July 24, 2018
I am really tired

Days since breast cancer diagnosis: 66

Day 190 – the ‘is summer over yet’ edition?

Ok, I can’t stand the heat. There, I’ve said it. I have to be out so much in it because of the cancer that I cannot really hibernate which is my want. The only good things are the summer vegetables we can get so fresh and local. Had my blood work done today. The lovely Tiana takes me to chemo tomorrow!

July 23, 2018
I am dying of heat



Days since breast cancer diagnosis: 65

Day 189 – ‘A Huge Thank You to Everyone Who Came Out to Help’

You can see the metal fence panels

We had our volunteer work party this weekend to help us get our yard work done and put up a fence to ensure that Oswald could go outside and accidentally fall into the pond or one of the ditches.1 Oswald has a permanent tracheostomy and if he fell into the pond he would drown.


IMG_4034We talked to Mo, who volunteers at SAINTS about some solutions to our problem. Our yard is very wet and we would not be able to put up permanent fence until later in the fall. Oswald has been going out on a rope since January. Mo had the great idea of putting up some farm fence panels.

Before we could put the fencing up, the grass had to be cut in the area. At the beginning of the summer, our grass grows very quickly because of the huge amount of water. So, in short, lots of work had to be done.

Our first crew who mowed and wee-whacked the back yard: Heather, Sally, Marie, Nate tackled the back yard that was really overgrown even though it had been mowed once already. It was a lot of work and took several hours. Oscar helped me get the food together and Angelina woman the Big Green Egg We couldn’t have done it without all of you!

The front yard

The next day Mo arrived to start the installation. Mo, John, Sally, Oscar, Angelina, Dana, and Carmen. Oscar did a run for stronger zip ties to help reinforce the fence. John also helped me with iRing doorbell that I have not yet finished installing it.

Sally, Oscar and Dana planted all of our plants outside to which we have not been able to plan.

Carla arrived a little later and did a grocery run for us which was very helpful. John mowed the front lawn for us as well.

We are so grateful to everyone for helping out. We have such great people in our lives.

Thanks to my chemo partner Jennifer and my new inductee Tiana!

Thank you everyone, we couldn’t have done it without you!



  1. We have a drainage pond with a gully to the back corner of the property to drain water. ↩︎


Days since breast cancer diagnosis: 64