The Waiting Room

Today, September 20, 2022, begins the next leg of my pancreatic cancer journey. After a repeat CT scan, intake, and lab work, I am sitting in the waiting room while my future path is being decided by the group of people on my interdisciplinary team at UCHealth Anschutz.

It’s an incredibly daunting wait. Has the cancer spread or stayed the same? Have the cancer cells in my common bile duct become tumors? Does my lab work reflect the otherwise excellent health I possess? I wouldn’t wish this wait upon a single soul. Not even a walk at a nature reserve after a late breakfast soothed my increasing agitation.

Chemotherapy. Surgery. Possible genetic mutations. Those are all heady topics beyond the insidious pancreatic cancer diagnosis. Yet, when I walked in this morning, I knew without a doubt I am one of the “lucky” ones. I am not the 80% who are slowly being internally proliferated by pancreatic cancer and find out when it is too late for them to have a decent fighting opportunity. Often death is soon upon them after learning they are ill. That is not my story and I grieve for each one who’s story that became or will become.

I know I have a fantastic DNP who worked at John Hopkins for a decade with one of the oncologists on my team before coming to Colorado. I believe that is an excellent start.

I also believe I am meant to be here, in this place, to receive the best help I can to beat this mini murderer I carry within.

What I steadfastly do not believe is that God placed this disease within me. Nor did God give me this cancer because I could handle it. As my eloquent cousin Mark says, we live in a mixed bag of a world. We do not know what is ahead of us or why some of us go through what we go through. Difficult things happen to everyone, as do beautiful things along the way in this finite earth-bound life.

I retain my choice in all this to find peace, joy, laughter, and love. And yes, there will be moments or days of sorrow, grief, and pain. I choose to live for today and tomorrow on my terms until the possibility slips away (hopefully decades in the future), and it is time for me to return from whence I came. As a believer in Christ, I am confident my inner peace and gracious attitude begin with Him.

Until there is more to report…



Childbirth Time Machine

Did you know time-walking is possible? I assure you it must be because I experienced it first-hand spending a day in a labor and delivery unit recently.

Why did I perceive a disturbance in the timeline?

  • Admission to the unit when in early labor.
  • Epidural placement prior to active labor.
  • Labor induction without medical reason before 39 weeks.
  • Allowing only “clears” (only broth, ice chips, popsicles, gelatin) during an induction or after epidural placement.
  • High primary and repeat cesarean rates.
  • Additional Interventions because of the above practices.

The most frustrating thing of all is that no one seemed to be bothered by how anti-evidence or anti-standard of care this all is.

I’ve attended more than 100 hospital births and many hundreds of homebirths; I’m absolutely gobsmacked by the laissez faire attitude toward the common usage of outdated practices and the absence of evidence-supported healthy practices.

Evidence shows how each of these practices increases interventions, maternal and fetal morbidity and mortality. NO WONDER THE US ranks so poorly amongst all of the developed nations of the world.

NO WONDER women exhibit high rates of fear surrounding childbirth. What women are routinely experiencing in labor and delivery units is scary, trauma-producing, and increases poorer outcomes. It doesn’t resemble or imitate physiologic spontaneous birth and how positive it can be.

The fact that most women still can have vaginal births in the hospital is a TESTIMONY of how fantastically designed women and babies are, not that the interventions and practices are beneficial to most.

Drop me a comment or email. I would love to hear about your experiences.

TO lighten the mood. Cord cutting to start the newborn exam at a homebirth.

Hello World!

Welcome! It came to my attention recently that my website had been co-opted by someone else, much to my aggravation. Now I’m back with a new site and more brain squirrel wrangling from the corners of my mind and the world as I experience it.

My posts will cover an array of topics as I am a multi-faceted human just like you.

My current status is as accelerated nursing student, coffee enthusiast, and lover of cats and the outdoors.

See you soon.