Thursday, February 23, 2012

A Lump Head No More

Yesterday was Angela’s surgery to have her lump on her forehead removed.  She has had this lump for a few years now, but as she ages, and as we notice it and rub it to check it, she has become more sensitive about it.  So, about 3 months ago, I decided to have it looked at for removal.  We went through the lovely HMO hoops of being military care provided folks.  We went to the clinic to have the Dr. look at it there, to confirm that yes, she does have a lump on her head.  Then get a referral out to a local dermatologist to have it looked at.  We get to hear again, yes, she has a lump on her head.  Yes, it looks to be benign, but we can remove it.  Submit more paperwork to get the approval to HAVE it removed.  Wouldn’t you think that would have been done when the Dr. on base looked at it the first time as that was what we were there for in the first place?  Hum… stupidity, thy name is government red tape.  Ok, so we were in the 2nd Dr’s around Christmas and I opted to go ahead and schedule to have this done during winter break as their time lines for scheduling was a month out at that time already.  By then, I knew I would have the approval, and I was right.  So, all things considered, it took time, but it was approved and in place. 
By this time, however, the child is now rattled by the idea of having this done and does not WANT it done.  She was working herself into a tizzy days before the event.  So, I took time off work and we headed over.  Tears started to flow long before we even got out of the neighborhood.  She really did NOT want to go.  We arrived at the office and it was hard to even get her out of the car.  By now, she’s trying to convince me that it’s not necessary; that she’s fine with it; she’ll not be bugged when we look at it over and over again in the summer when her tan really brings it into focus.  Sigh.  So, after a bit of coaxing and just plain grabbing of hands and pulling her (gently) of the car, we were in the office.
MORE tears and a nice older couple trying to tell her all would be ok, it wasn’t like they were cutting anything off – hahaha – fail.  Yes, they ARE cutting something off.  I keep telling her over and over that it’s OK to be freaked, it’s OK for her to worry about what they are going to do.  I was freaked when they cut on my ear.  She’ll be fine.  I would NEVER let them do anything that would put her in danger.
NOTHING is getting through.  They even put some Lidocaine stuff on her forehead to numb the area so she wouldn’t feel the needle prick.  THEN when we get into the actual room for the 2nd time (Lidocaine was applied and we were sent back out to the waiting room), she really lost it and started sobbing.  Sigh.  I kept repeating all would be fine…. Here have another tissue.  Up onto the table and fresh tears and more sobbing.  (poor Angie)… holding her hands talking her down.  They then put the drape over her face – oh, joy.  MORE sobbing, shaking and rattling of teeth.  They taped back her hair, all the while EVERYONE in the room is talking her off of the full hysterics that are seconds away.  They did put the drape where she could breathe and look out the bottom of it… to reach in and dry tears as necessary for me.  They sprayed some freeze stuff on her skin as well to distract from the needle and the stretching of skin with the numbing shot… it didn’t really help, she was still feeling all the tugging and weird sensations that come with something like this.  
It wasn’t until they were cutting and she could feel the tugging and such without pain that she finally relaxed a bit.  She stopped shaking and just laid there and let it all happen.  I did tell her they had already started, and she stopped my blow by blow reports when I said that she wasn’t even bleeding that much.  Ha!  She is not the gore person that Lizzie and I are.  I had mentioned pictures – she nixed pictures.  L  SAD face!!!  So, there is no documentation of this event for the records.  Drat.  She wouldn’t even look at the cyst in the jar afterwards.  It was a good sized ones, but not huge, looked like a little pickled onion – about that size too.  Not too big, not too small.  It was deep and took 4 internal stitches and 8 external to close it all up.  She didn’t get the pretty blue stitches that I got when I had my cancers removed.  Hers is a black thread and looped rather than individually tied… so it should be fairly inconspicuous when all is said and done.
We then went out and grabbed some lunch and headed on home.  I tried to take a picture of her with her bandage and snuck one in on her way out of the offices… but she’s really photo shy about all this.  I’m hoping she’ll let me take a shot of her stitches when I re-bandage her this afternoon.... and I did!!

War Wounds! The changing of the bandage!!
Funny - loved the Band Aids I picked out for her, but hated the sight of the actual stitches!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Wednesday wanderings

On our way to Atlanta last Wednesday (15th) for Mom’s dermatologist appointment at Emory she read me a number of articles.  One was in regards to IKEA:   http://www.deseretnews.com/article/700220506/Trapped-by-IKEA-How-retail-space-makes-you-buy-more.html?s_cid=s10

The author likens going to IKEA to “…hunting in a jungle.”  They designed the store to keep you “lost” and disoriented and forced to focus on the actual content of the store.  It’s so true.  If you have never been in an IKEA, it’s like being continually  lost looking for your way out.  It’s a maze of stuff, stuff and more stuff.  There is a lot of talk about how retail stores will place things in certain areas of the store most designed to snare the customers; with IKEA:  “They snare you by losing you,” he said.  “So you are lost and you can’t get away except by walking through the whole thing, by which time you’ve picked up all these impulse purchases.”

So, I took that challenge!  Not because I really wanted the challenge, I enjoy “submitting” to the experience, however, we arrived at IKEA at 9:30 to find the store would not open until 10:00 and Mom’s appointment was at 11:20.  Our time was limited.  I gave us ½ hour to get in and out – scary time limit if you know IKEA.  I was up for it!  I wanted to look at book shelves.  Mom wanted chair pads.  And off we went!  We were successful on all accounts.  I looked at the bookshelves.  Nothing that impressive, so we passed on those and went in search of the chair pads.  We stopped and drooled over the carpets and made our way down to the chair pads.  We escaped with two chair pads and NO chocolate… and well within our ½ hour time frame – yeah us!!  Now I have to admit I did go and look at the scratch and dent section as well, to which nothing tempted me. Too awfully much J

Then off to Mom’s appointment for her finger and a biopsy.  Poor mom bled and bled.  To her defense she did warn them about her baby aspirin a day – they went ahead with the biopsy.  So, now she waits for the results.  We opted for lunch and went to the Vortex.  They are famous for their hamburgers: http://www.thevortexbarandgrill.com/   Had I been to that website before going there I would have been a bit more prepared for the crazy d├ęcor and very interesting place that it was.  It was surprisingly tiny inside.  I don’t think on a good night it could hold more than 100 if that… very small.  The burgers however were very good.  Now the sad thing?  They compare to our hometown burger from Mike’s Burgers and Dogs.  Yep, it’s true.  Now we didn’t get anything special, just a plain old burger.  I’m sure the more exotic burgers could put ours to shame, but for a normal every day burger… this was good. 

I got to go to the Junkman’s Daughter which was to be a second hand store, but turned out to be a freak show as well.  Yes, we were in Bohemia central.  So – we left.  Mom wasn’t up to much after that, so we made our way home stopping off at AAA, Dollar Tree and Kroger on the way home.  Not too much adventure for a day, but still a great trip – sans the hole in mom’s finger L