Monday, March 21, 2016

Things I've Learned Since Friday ...

1.  Attitude is everything.  The second round of chemo went very smoothly compared to the first and I think it was in part because of how scared I was of the unknown.  I was more relaxed this time and not only did the dreaded blood draw go well, but the actual chemotherapy seemed to go quicker. 

2.  Fried ... well, anything ... isn't a good follow-up to chemotherapy.  Yeah, yeah, I know. Of COURSE it isn't; however, in my defense, the fish and chips at Twisted Rooster are darn tasty.  Or, at least I used to think so.  Oy vey.  I took an anti-nausea pill before we even left the restaurant.  And then again six hours later.

3.  Saturday is my eye of the chemo storm.  I seem to have a lull between the nausea of chemo day and the ache/exhaustion of the third day.  Saturday is a good day for me.  I felt so good this past Saturday that I volunteered one last time at a LaughFest show that night.

4.  Sunday post chemo is my drugged stupor day.  I managed to go out for breakfast and then was done. I mean ... sit down and wake up hours later done.  Go to bed at 6:30 p.m. done.  DONE.  When you hit that point: give in.  Your body needs you to shut the hell up and get unconscious.

5.  Day 17 is THE day.  Dr. V said my hair would fall out two weeks after the first chemotherapy infusion - day 14.  The nurse said it would be more like day 17.  Nurse L has the win.  My hair was fine up until ... well ... today.  This morning, I went to put a bit of product in it, re-smooth it, etc., and ended up with my hair in my hand rather than product in my hair.  A few shakes over the sink told me all I needed to know: Day 17 people. 

I called my hairdresser and she kindly found time for me today.  See, the hair on top of my head was taking the swan dive first and would likely have left me with a bare top and ring of hair.  That might work well for a certain Irishman I know (McMorrow) or some current male coworkers but I decided against the drawn-out end.  And my hairdresser is incredible.  She fit me in, took care of everything, gave me extra scrub to use on my remaining magenta scalp (the mohawk is gone but the pink doesn't want to die), and wouldn't accept more than a hug. 

I got good people. 

And finally ....

6. I have a damn fine looking head.

Talk about liberating.  I thought I'd freak out.  I thought I'd cry. 

I thought I'd begin speaking like Andy Serkis and calling everything my precious.

Ha!  Nope.

I've learned I'm so much stronger than I thought. 

With a sprinkle of crazy for good measure.

Friday, March 18, 2016

The Unease of Aid

There was a time, years ago, when I was married, with husband and stepson.  I was a wife and, literally, a soccer mom - or soccer stepmom, helping with homework, taking a kid to practices, and washing and folding the laundry of others ... once I picked it up off the floor and gave up trying to understand how it didn't walk of its own volition (seriously - don't play the waiting game with a chef's socks by the couch - you'll lose).

And then everything fell apart.  The marriage ended and I was alone.

I no longer knew how to do that; be alone.  I went to furnish my first post-divorce apartment and hadn't a clue what I liked.  Oh, I knew what HE liked.  What HE would have picked. 

It took me a long time to really feel comfortable with my choices.  A long time.  But I finally got to the point where my apartment is just as I want it to be, I take care of myself.  I'm fully independent, and a bit of a social introvert.  I can be social ,.. if you manage to convince me to be out of the house.  But I'm good alone.  I'm pretty happy alone.  Hell, I even enjoy going to movies and eating out - alone.

And then I got cancer.

I had multiple doctor appointments and tests - no problem - I can do those alone.  And, in all honesty, I knew I'd likely be better able to maintain my emotions if I was alone during those first tests.  Then the MST meeting arrived and my stepmom came up for that.  More tests followed and numerous family members arrived for the surgery.  A sister stayed with me after my lumpectomy for a few days and then another took her place - all as I was recovering.  Flowers arrived, gifts of coloring books, puzzle books, Walking Dead trivia game and necklace, an amazing Star Wars chemo quilt, beautiful afghan, Wonder Woman cookie jar, Princess Leia wig, Princess Leia talking bottle opener (no, really), gift cards, cards and more cards, a homemade stitched sign from my little sister, food and more glorious food from friends.

The aid just started pouring in ... the support.  And I was woefully unprepared for it.

Odd, right? 

I'd worked for so long at being independent that I no longer knew how to accept aid.  I'm still not great at it.  I remember the feeling of dread that I got when I realized that I couldn't do this myself.  Especially the chemotherapy.  I dislike the idea that someone else will have to drive me to and from chemotherapy.  I'm not allowed to do it myself.  My stepmom has been here for the first round and she's arriving tomorrow morning for the second round.  But, see, there's sixteen rounds all together.  And rounds 5-16 are every week not every other week.

The thing is ... I have good people.  No, I have amazing people.  I know I have people ready to help me.  I just hate that I need the help to begin with.  It's probably one of the few things that makes me regret that I'm alone.  I think it would be easier to accept help from a spouse.  I mean, that's kinda part of the job description, right?  Haul each other's sick asses around from time to time, as needed. 

How is it that the hardest part - or one of the hardest parts - of having a serious illness is the difficulty of accepting help from others?  I am getting better at it [I've eaten better than I have in a long time due to my incredible friends and stepmom.]  But it still makes me uncomfortable. 

I've tried to be on top of thank-you's - tried to make them immediate.  Whether it is an in-person "Thank you" or a written one, a post, or even text, I am trying to make sure that others know how grateful I am for their thoughts, prayers, food, assistance of any kind. 

Like I said, I've got good people.  And I truly hope that they know how humbled and grateful I am.

I still wish I could do it myself. 

If you're like me.  If it's killing you that you have to have someone help you through this, well, suck it up, buttercup.  You can't do it by yourself.  You can do a lot alone, yes, but not everything.  And, having been on both sides of this scenario, I can tell you that your helper really wants to be doing whatever it is they are doing.  So many things about an illness are uncontrollable.  For us and for those who care for us.  Offering aid is something your loved ones can do. 

They can't magically cure you from cancer.  [Only asparagus can do that.]  But they can make you soup.  They can drop off a meal that you pop into the oven.  They can send coloring books or puzzle books to help you pass the chemo time.  And they can drive you when you need a driver.  Those are things they can control. 

Let them.

Chemo #2 takes place tomorrow ... oops, I mean today; in roughly 10 hours. 

I've got a list of questions for poor Nurse L to answer while pumping me full of the red drug.  I'm about to lose my hair.  Dr. V said I'd lose it two weeks after my first infusion.  That's tomorrow.  Another nurse suggested I might have up until this coming Monday before I'm a cue ball.  To say I'm anxious about the loss is an understatement. 

Waiting might be the hardest part but I've been instructed not to cut my hair shorter than 1/2 inch to avoid any ingrown torture since my hair will continue to grow ... until it falls out.  Until the follicles give way.  Until I get my Elmer Fudd on.

One of my questions has to do with that.  Losing my hair.  All of my hair?  Dr. V already mentioned that some patients lose their eyebrows and eyelashes as well as head hair but some don't.  I neglected to ask the follow up questions to that, i.e., so what about arm hair, leg hair, um ... other body hair? 
Excuse me, doctor, but WILL the curtains match the carpet?  Or, I mean, will the bare window match the wood floor?
What effects from chemotherapy tend to accumulate?  I have heard that fatigue will get worse as the sessions continue but what about nausea?  And these questions tend to be drug specific.  If you're reading this and are about to undergo chemotherapy, you might lose your hair or you might not - it depends on what drug you're receiving.  The same goes for other side effects.

So I'll bombard poor Nurse L with questions, try to remain calm as the drugs go into my body, suck water down like there is no tomorrow, and hope for the best.  For a relatively nausea free aftermath.  For decent sleep this weekend. 

And for the ability to gracefully accept the temporary loss of my hair. 
Oh, who am I kidding.  Ya'll are totally going to see pictures of some weird pile of hair soon enough.  That doesn't sound graceful; but that sounds like me.

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Of Bone Pain and Port Ache ...

Or perhaps bone ache and port pain.

The dreaded day three came and brought with it some annoying but not excruciating bone ache from the Neulasta shot.  Now, when bone ache is due to your bone marrow being kick-started into making more cells, you'd think that the biggest bones would be the ones that ache, right?  I expected to have sore legs - especially thighs - but instead I noticed it the most in my upper arms, my sternum (making breathing fun), and my skull.  I've been told that our skulls have a lot of bone marrow, so that part makes sense.  It sucks, but it makes sense.

If you're getting ready to take that shot for the first time, I do highly recommend the Claritin.  I have a feeling my aches would have been much worse without it.  Take one Claritin the day before, one the day of the shot, and one the day after.  I also carried one with me on Monday and Tuesday, just in case I felt the ache too much.  I didn't.  So, while everyone is different, expect some bone ache and especially remember that you're likely to feel it in the sternum.  Knowing that this was likely causing my uncomfortableness in that area saved me from freaking out and thinking I was having heart issues. 

My big question going into this first post-chemo week was when my worst day would hit.  I'd say it was indeed Sunday.  I headed back into work on Monday and did end up needing to take a nausea pill within about a 1/2 hour of being there but ... eh ... I chalk that up to more things than the chemotherapy.  I was anxious to see how I would feel, which then did not make me feel well. 
Vicious circle there, folks.  I still felt a bit off Tuesday but woke on Wednesday feeling better ... just still winded.

Seriously.  Winded is my best description. 

A walk to my coffee place and back left me struggling to talk and walk at the same time.  Now, it was never that I could not take a deep breath, it was more that I did not unconsciously do so - I was stuck more in shallow breathing mode.  Internally, I chalked that up to a combination of the Neulasta shot sternum shock, chemotherapy, and continued recovery from the placement of my port. 

Externally, I called my doctor on Wednesday to make sure it was all normal.  Dr. V promptly asked me to stop in to get my vitals checked and a blood count.  Oxygen was great, vitals all good, and the blood count had my white blood cells near the top of the normal range with lots of wee newbies being created - yay!  It's all good, right? 

Not necessarily.  She was still concerned about the possibility of a blood clot in my lungs so I got to trot on back to the hospital that night for a CT scan.  I found myself back in the same place I first dangled free on January 13th during my first breast MRI.  Oooh, fun times.  But this time, I thought I was simply being slid into the dome of claustrophobia and out again. Nope. One of the first things that the technician mentioned was "IV" and I abruptly forgot whatever else she'd been saying.  It should have, but hadn't, occurred to me that they would be injecting me with dye or contrast or some other substance to make my innards easier to see but since no one had said that to me yet, I'd been blissfully unaware. 

An IV?  I swear I could feel my veins shrinking. 

And then I remembered my port.  MY PORT!!  My power port!  Can that be used?  Why yes, yes, it can.  I pulled my port ID card out of my wallet.  [I totally have a port ID card.] She confirmed that they could use my port, and I asked for the freezing/numbing spray that had been used on me during my first chemotherapy session.  If you recall, accessing the port can be as painful as an IV, but they can use the freezing spray if needed the first time and thereafter you can use a prescribed numbing cream.

I have that cream.  I knew the its exact location.  In my home.

So I asked for the freezing spray.  "Oh, no, we don't have that here."

Another memory dump occurred.  Huh?  But ... but ... now what.  There was the possibility that they could find a vein and actually start an IV with little pain because I've been blessed with that before so I held my arm out to her and said, "Let's see about a regular IV then."

Pretty sure my veins heard that and immediately dove for cover. [Dived? Dove? Honestly, I'm too tired right now to look.  Educate me, people.]  She did not find any she thought promising.

So I was back to the port. 

You know, I've found going through this that my emotions are all over the place.  Much of the time, I'm just focused on what comes next and/or something completely unrelated to cancer.  But I'll admit that my emotions are nearer the surface these days than usual.  By this time, I was already on the table that would slide into the machine.  The idea that they were going to access my port sans numbing agent, which I'd been told would hurt, was just another straw on an overburdened camel.  Poor animal.  I think I've gone through several of them these past couple months.  So I was feeling rather low and, honestly, weak when she returned to let me know that somehow ... go figure ... in a hospital the size of Butterworth, they had found some of the freezing spray.

Hallelujah! Annnnnd UP the emotions go again.

So I looked away, they sprayed, and a nurse accessed my port in a relatively painless way. 

Nurse to Tech:  "Hmmmm.  I'm not getting anything.  "Really?"  "Yeah, I'm all the way in, all the way to the back, but I'm not getting a return."  *more movement within my port*  "Hmmm.  Yeah, nothing.  Hey, is _______ around?" 

The other nurse was indeed "around" and joined the other two, one of whom was now pressing on the outline of my port, which is still covered with steri-strips from the placement.  "It's a bit hard to see it through the strips."  PUSH .... "Oh, yeah, there it is - see - I was right in placement, I don't know why ...."  PUSH .... "Okay, I'll hold down while you access it."

More freezing spray.  PUSH.  Pressure, pressure, pressure, and another access, finally with a return.

From there, I put my arms over my head, followed the breathing instructions by the dome of claustrophobia, and in no time felt a rush a heat from the dye, and was done. 
Note:  The dye spreads warmed through your body quickly and you WILL feel like you just pissed yourself.  You didn't.  Well, hopefully, you didn't.  I didn't.

So I woke up Wednesday with a healing but still bruised port placement site. 

Then I woke up Thursday with a healing but WHOA-that-hurts bruised port placement site. 

BUT I have no clots. No clots in me!

Saturday, March 5, 2016

In the Midst of the Dreaded Weekend, And Feeling Pretty Fine

Three big things happened the past three days: I had my chemotherapy port placed, had my first chemotherapy infusion, and got a first shot of Neulasta (the medication that makes my bone marrow start churning out those white blood cells).  Each offered possible horrors.  Some delivered WAY more than others. 

Let's discuss.

When last I left you, I was literally about to walk out the door to get my port placement at Lemmen-Holton - the one-stop cancer shop.  I had to arrive at 7 a.m. for my 8 a.m. port (oh the times before and since that I've wished that was a wine). 

So once again, for the (I think) 18th time since 2016 began, I stripped to some extent for strangers.  It's also the third time I've had to pee in a cup to prove I'm not pregnant. 
You'd think I'd be having more fun. 
After changing into a hospital gown (no air conditioning in this one), I got another IV in the back of my hand (I'm such a wuss), and met each of the people who would be helping with the placement of my port.  The port sits under my skin and connects to a line that goes up over my clavicle and into one of my major arteries.  This allows for much easier access during chemotherapy and protects me to some extent from the big hitters, i.e., red drugs, that are excellent at killing.  Of course that means that if it were to touch say ... my skin ... it would cause severe burns.  And this is going INTO my body.  Alrighty then. 
It also colors your pee red/orange for a day or so after, so don't freak out about that. 
I was wheeled into the procedure/surgery room and helped myself onto the narrow (always so narrow) surgery table, where there were discussions over the weather while some guy cleaned the area that would be accessed, i.e., my right chest and neck. 
FINALLY, rightie is getting some action!
I was covered with a surgery tarp that had a cut-out of that area, and then the lovely lady handling my sedation created a bit of a window for me to look through, off to the side, since I was on my back with my head looking to the left.  I asked beforehand to make sure that I would not remember what happened.  You might, but you'll be comfortable.  Hmmmm.  Usually people will go to sleep.  Hmmmm.

Folks, I was awake throughout the whole thing.  I had focused on keeping my eyes open because I wanted sedation Sally to know that I was NOT yet sedated.  I heard the doctor say he was going to be giving me the shots to numb the area but I'd heard all of that before and it was usually right after when I'd be just ... out. 

Nope.  I heard that I'd feel some pressure - yep.  Now, I didn't FEEL any pain or anything like that.  I just  hadn't expected to be conscious.  My mind wandered so I was out of it to a certain extent, I suppose.  But soon I was helping myself onto the bed again and being wheeled into recovery.  I asked how much of the sedative I'd been given.  The answer:  On a scale of 1 to 10 with 1 being a minimum someone would have before going to sleep on the operating table, I'd been given around 10.  Apparently, I have a high tolerance.  Go figure. [Looking innocent.]

This time in recovery I had shortbread cookies while I quietly pondered what a weird experience being assimilated into the Borg had been.  Oh, and I took a picture that you can see here.  I have to say, port placement was not a treat. 
Now, if you're reading this about to get your own, don't fear it.  Everyone is different.  And while the first day or so was not pleasant (read: a bit painful), it is now two days later and things are perfectly fine.  One tip: some of your discomfort MIGHT be from how they placed the dressing over it.  Just call into your oncologist's office and a nurse can walk you through pulling just a bit of it down and repositioning it.  It really did help.
Cue Friday.  THE day.  My first chemo infusion. 

I arrived at the infusion center at 8:15 a.m. and waited to get my blood drawn.  They have to check your blood counts to make sure you are able to safely get the infusion.  My name finally gets called:
                            Two of us get up.
Kimberly M.?
                            Both of us take another step toward her.  [Really?]

I pipe up with my full name.  I lose.  I sit back down.

A few minutes later I lose again when my tech is unable to complete my blood draw 'cause I'm a wuss with needle-phobic veins that will dive for cover any chance they get.  So I left with a pain in my right elbow and another on the tip of my finger where the tech had to prick it, then milk it like a cow to get the necessary blood.
But hey, I got TWO Scooby Doo band-aids, dammit.
Then I waited until I got called back, weighed, and escorted to my pod.  My pod had a recliner, extra chair for a visitor, TV and remote, and a table. Hell, let's move in.  Across the way from me, in another pod, sat Mary, who was getting her first infusion as well.  She was already hooked up and had calmly unplugged her IV station and rolled it over to the bathroom while I was waiting, hunkered down under my Star Wars chemo quilt, to meet my nurse. 

My first impression of my nurse (I'll call her L) is fabulous.  [Thank God. Can you imagine not liking your nurse who will see you through months of chemo horror?]  My blood pressure and temperature were checked.  Then she removed the bandages from my fresh port and prepared to access it.  I had been told this part would be a bit painful and she agreed.  I asked for numbing spray.  She already had it in her pocket ready to go.  The spray is freezing cold.  And then it was done.  She'd already accessed the port and I felt nothing.  Yay, L!!  She checked the return (to make sure my blood was flowing through it fine) and then I ended up getting a couple anti-nausea meds up front (about 20 minutes each) before any of the chemotherapy drugs were introduced.

When it was time for the big guns, another nurse came up with my nurse L to double check that she had the right chemotherapy drugs for me.  She would repeat this process across the way for Mary a bit later (I'm not sure how I'd jumped ahead of Mary by this time but I did).  Then L sat with me while she pushed through the red drug.  Now, I will say that I could feel this one.  It didn't hurt but it didn't feel pleasant either.  I made sure to tell L anything that I noticed since I wanted to make sure it was normal and not the start of some bad reaction.  It absolutely made me feel better knowing that my nurse was literally right in front of me in case anything went wrong.  So, uncomfortable feeling going in yes, but also normal.  This took about 15-20 minutes. 

The second drug took about an hour and she did not have to stick around for that one.  I read, looked online, talked to my stepmom, talked to Mary, went to the bathroom, drank some hot cocoa, and ate some ginger snaps.  All in all - it went pretty well.  When that drug was done, L flushed the port and redressed it for me, and I was on my way.  Now, about half way through the last drug, I noticed that I felt a bit ... drugged/drunk.  Mary concurred.  We both felt it but I was otherwise fine.  I stopped at the pharmacy right in the same office to pick up my numbing cream (which I'll use next time), and my anti-nausea medication.

I was told more than once to take the anti-nausea meds as SOON as I noticed any queasy feeling. 

But first - since I felt fine and since we were downtown - I introduced my stepmom to LaughFest Central.  I'm volunteering this year for LaughFest - a yearly festival that brings multiple comedians to town from across the nation and/or across the street, where they entertain us all while raising money for Gilda's Club, right here in Grand Rapids.  If you live near, please check it out.  The festival runs March 10 - 20, 2016.  I got a t-shirt. And I still felt fine.

I felt fine until about two minutes after texting my friend Robin that I felt fine - just a bit woozy.  And as soon as that woozy made me question my stomach, I took one of the pills.  Done.  I'd learn the next day that Mary did NOT take the pill as soon as she felt nauseous.  The result did not sound pleasant.

I still felt off when it was bedtime last night and I admit I did not sleep well.  But I did not get sick.  I just felt off.  I was tired but could not sleep.  If I slept, I'd jerk away like I'd been drugged. 
Which, really, I had.

Cue Saturday. Today. The day of the Neulasta shot.  The shot that would help my bone marrow make more white blood cells so that my immunity would not stay too low during chemotherapy.  See, the killer chemo not only kills cancer cells but any other fast-reproducing but short lived cells in your body.  These include things like your white blood cells, your hair follicles (hence my soon to be Sméagol look), and a variety of cells in your digestive tract from your mouth to your, I don't want to think of a different name for butthole right now. [I'm sure the urban dictionary has many if you're curious.] Higher immunity - yay!  But Neulasta can sometimes cause bone aches since your bones are suddenly being told to mass produce more white blood cells than they're use to doing.  I'm envisioning an angsty teen being prodded into weekend lawn duty.  Angsty teen can cause headaches.  And so can Neulasta - since your skull has loads of bone marrow.  Nope, I didn't know that either.

I waited around, talked with Mary and found out about her need for nausea meds that hit sooner than mine and the result of her waiting a bit too long to take them.  When I got called back, the physician's assistant explained the shot to me and asked if I wanted it in the back of my arm or my belly.  She just needed to squeeze some fat.  I almost laughed.  Let's go for easy fat access, shall we? So now my belly is bandaged.  I had to wait for about 20 minutes to make sure I wasn't allergic to the medication and then we went on our merry way to await bone ache.

The bone ache hasn't hit yet.  I took Claritin yesterday, today, and I'll take it again tomorrow, because for some reason, it is known to help curb the ache.  We'll see. 

I've also been told that tomorrow is often the worst day - or beginning of the worst days - post chemo session.  So, it's another wait and see for me.  I'm planning to work as much as possible during this time.  If my worst days end up being later rather than sooner, I might need to change my chemo days from Fridays to Tuesdays.  It's all a wait and see game right now.

But right now, I'm feeling fine.  Today, after the shot was over, I just felt hungry.  We went to my favorite diner for a late breakfast, went to get groceries, and watched Season 2 of Younger on TV Land.  [Seriously - good show - check it out.]

And I just had grilled cheese for dinner.

Living the dream, people.  Living the dream.

Now to see what the dreaded day three brings - hopefully only unfulfilled warnings about day three.

Friday, March 4, 2016

It's All Science Fiction

We are the Borg.

You will be assimilated.

Resistance is futile.

My nanoprobes port has been placed.

Life IS science fiction and fantasy. 

Some of us just choose to recognize it up front.


August 5, 2016
I am officially dissimulated or "deported" if you will.

 Just to be clear - that was INSIDE ME. 
And now it's not. *huge grin*

Thursday, March 3, 2016

The Dreaded Weekend

It's here.  Finally.

It's just after 6 a.m. and I am due at Lemmen-Holton downtown at 7 a.m. to get ready for my 8 a.m. port placement.  And then tomorrow, at 8:15 a.m., I'll be there again to officially begin chemotherapy.

I'd say - commence freak-out - except that has been sputtering off and on now for well over a week or more.  My surreal cancer life is over and reality has set in; I'm not a fan.

BUT ... as my Dad would say ... you gotta be tough.  One day at a time.  One step at a time.

Last night that step included getting rid of most of my hair so I don't have to think about that on top of everything else right now.

So ... I made an appointment with my hairdresser, the beautiful and immensely kind Chrissy Powers, grabbed a bottle of wine, and the cutting commenced with my stepmom Pam watching and my kick-ass friend, Tisha Wilson, documenting.

The day began with this hair:

WHY is it that just before that big cut, your hair always does exactly what you want and feels uber soft?  It is as if it is conscious that its days are numbered and the pleading for one more chance has begun.  NO MERCY!

Chrissy dove right in:

I seem very zen, eh?  Yeah. That's the wine, folks.

THE WINE.  And Hello 80's.  Girls really do just wanna have fun. 

Okay, okay, it's out of my system for now.

My little sister suggested I take a picture with a mohawk before the end.  Here you go, lil sis.

Wait ... you know.  I'm only going to have any hair for about two weeks so ... hmm .... you have color?  Magenta?

Well ... it IS breast cancer, after all, right?  And it's mostly gray other than that if I'm honest, right? 


I give you ... the Justa Mohawk:

So now I sit at 6:30 a.m., waiting to leave to begin the weekend I've been dreading.  Surgery didn't scare me all that much in comparison.  Frankenboob didn't scare me.  The infection was a pain in the ass (or breast) but it didn't scare me.

In all honesty, folks, I've woke up with my teeth chattering in the last couple nights and it wasn't because I had a fever.  It took me some time but I realized I'm simply afraid.

Chemo scares me.

The port placement scares me.  The idea of something being IN me for months scares me.

Hmmm ... Sméagol Kim or Cyborg Kim.  Now I'm torn.

But I'll get through it.  This morning Hipster Kim (the 'hawk, donning purple glasses and an old flannel shirt, I'm about as hipster as I'll ever be), is heading downtown to begin the dreaded weekend.

Send up some good thoughts for me please.  And thank you.

I'll see you on the other side....