Monday, March 7, 2011

Aisles of Spring -- Makeup, Hats, Food

The most wonderful thing happened.  Not even one week after my last chemo the vicious nausea that plagued me without mercy suddenly dropped a step behind late Monday afternoon.  By Tuesday afternoon I totally ditched that devil nausea -- it seemed to have lost the trail completely; couldn't quite sniff it's way back. HA HA!

Wednesday morning the substitute court reporter that had promised to take court for me on Thursday phoned that she had a family emergency and would not be able to take court for me, but not to worry, she would find someone to work for meAt that point I thought, hey, you know what? I actually think I will be able to do this.  Don't worry about it, I told her.  I really did believe I could manage just fine.  She lined up a just-in-case/yoo-hoo-type sub for me anyway.  I felt so cared-about :)  But I did it!  I went to work and did just fine. 

A court reporter's job is a little different in that a courtroom setting is completely random.  Most people with jobs can count on regular 15 minute breaks -- one in the morning, one in the afternoon; always a lunch break.  They are to be at work at a certain time and clock out at a certain time.  For a court reporter, one never knows what will happen or how long a session might last; when or if you will have a lunch break -- or a break at all.  Things get mighty intense sometimes between witnesses and attorneys.  I am charged with the duty of making a verbatim record of it all -- every single word exchanged between everyone; the judge, the attorneys, the witnesses, the outbursts.  Needless to say, my job is stressful.  Getting sick or upchucking in the middle of it all is completely unacceptable.   I have no idea how elementary school teachers who are on chemo manage their jobs either; the stress levels must be similarly random -- not to mention how they manage to stay away from the germs children unknowingly fling around.

Anyway, my strength has improved daily.  Dwain's got me on a diet high in lean protein, low on acidic food, which I think goes a long way toward improving my stamina.   I have almost no feeling of nausea, which is also a first.  AND no horrible fatigue.  I like this train I'm on, so I think I'll just stay on it .   Prayers are also deeply appreciated. 

In my last post I touched on the subject of make-up.  I haven't worn makeup in many years, just sunscreen and a touch of lipstick for color.  Suddenly I've delved into a world that is literally over my head.  Some have suggested having an Estee Lauder makeover.   Estee Lauder?  Hey, I'm a huge fan, as was my mother.  But that's a makeup investment I'm not really willing to  make for something so temporary.  Once this chemo thing is over with, I'll go right back to my old clean-skinned ways.  The collars of my shirts  get so smudged and dirty when I wear make up.  I just want the bare necessities.  Thanks!

The Jungle Book - Bare Necessities (Mowgli and Baloo)

Look for the bare necessities, the simple bare necessities
Forget about your worry and your strife
I mean the bare necessities, that's why a bear can rest at ease... 

Sorry, I couldn't help it. Those words just popped out.  Feel free to get up and dance.  

Anyway, here are some pictures that Dwain took on Sunday of our efforts at makeup shopping.  This was the first time I've ever gone out in public without my wig -- just a little knit cap to cover my cold, bare head. And believe me, it was very, very cold on  Sunday. 

Target in Branson.  Aisles and Aisles of every makeup product I never knew existed.

After applying a good moisturizer, start with a good base foundation, my mother always said.  How does one select the correct color?

Blush and lipstick.  Color, color, color.  Which one would be right for me? BTW, how do you like cool the new straw hat?  Hint:  I love it!  Very cool on a hot day (I think).

This mascara promises to volumize my lashes -- all five or six of them that I have left, you think?
This hair color  for $4.50 was on the clearance aisle.  Hey, it's just my color, too.  I asked Dwain if he would help me get the color on the back of my lovely locks.
T.J. Maxx had many Easter products.  I was especially intrigued with this Yankee Candle.  Has anyone else on chemo notice their senses of (smell, taste, touch, hearing) being highly exaggerated? Or is it just me?  My sense of smell is especially strong, many times not in a good way. Happily, this candle was nice -- ultra sweet
Not quite sure what this is -- absolutely certain I did not want to try it.  Has anyone actually sampled this? If you have, PLEASE give me a review.  I promise to share it. 
Before we left Branson, we HAD to have a late afternoon snack -- starving were we! IHOP was just the ticket!  That's Dwain with his pot o'coffee (he never gets coffee at home, so this was a real treat!). 

Dwain likes coffee, I like tea; I want Dwain to share a snack with me. 
This is Rhonda.  Rhonda took good care of us, even asked if she could take a picture of us together.  I said, how about I take a picture of you at work and e-mail it to you.  Bet you don't get many pictures of yourself doing your actual job, do you?  She wrote her e-mail address on our ticket.  Rhonda is a good sport!  If you work in Branson, MO, being a good sport is sort of an unspoken  requirement.

Thank you, Rhonda!  

We tried not to leave her too big of a mess.   I almost forgot:  Dwain and I shared two spinach/chicken crepes, which were so filling that it ruined our appetite for dinner.  So when we got home, we ate dessert instead. 
Back to the courtroom I go tomorrow armed with my little cylinder of Clorox wipes.  This is day number 10, my lowest immune day, so I'm staying at home today,  away from everyone.  Here is a notable note:  A friend of ours told us that her sister had breast cancer and wasn't careful enough to heed the advise about low immunity.  She died not from the cancer itself but from pneumonia.  That is a sobering thought on which to end this blog.  So, I won't end it this way.


Dateline: Waco, TX, March 7,1974; Hillcrest Baptist Hospital -- painless childbirth was unheard of, the gender of your child was announced by the doctor; extra family was not allowed in the delivery room. I lay in a labor room wondering about the mystery of it all. Shaynan Lewis Johnston, my first child, was delivered by Dr. Scanio. She was perfect in every single way. Happy Birthday to my precious first child. I have loved you always. Mom


  1. You look fantastic, Megan!!!!! And I LOVE that hat! You wear it so well. I'm with you about the make-up. I'm NOT a make up person, nor do I like "wasting" so much money on something just to fool people and to wash off at the end of the day only to find my old face still there, same as always! And colors??? I don't have a clue either. I did the Mary Kay make over and spent a fortune one time. I think I still have most of it, and it's been years and years since then. The most I do now is a little powder, blush, and lipstick. But it's fun, isn't it????

    I'm just tickled pink that you are feeling so much better. Can't believe you are back at work after feeling like crawling in a hole. And time is creeping on and the light is at the end of the tunnel. It will be over soon, I promise.

    Thanks so much for visiting me today. Your comments are really appreciated!!!! I'm just so glad I found your blog because you've been such an inspiration to me.

    Keep warm and stay away from germs!!!!

  2. Glad to hear you stayed at home today on your day 10! Wise choice. I'm glad I have a smart mother who listens to her doctor. That story you told about a woman dying from pnemonia just scares me. How horrible to go through so much and then lose the battle. I know it happens all the time to so many and that's what makes it all the scarier.
    I totaly agree with your choice to keep the make up simple, and as far as the colors go? Stay away from bright Orange! That's all I gotta say!