05/16/2012, Kingston, Ontario
We are not all Doom and Gloom
The lettuce on the balcony is growing nicely. Its not quite ready to harvest but would provide a nice back drop for appetizers.
We appreciate the well wishes and flood of emails we have received. Al is not in any discomfort with this and has not been suffering headaches. He has difficulty focusing and at times has double vision. Aside from the obvious, odd look to his gaze you really would have no idea about his condition. Dr. Wallace feels it prudent to take out a chunk to relieve the pressure on the nerves and arteries involved.
I have pie dough chilling in the refrigerator to make the boy a fresh rhubarb pie for dinner tonight. You take joys where you can grab them, no matter how small. We take small pleasure in following our Canadian friends blogs (Banyan, Nelleke, Zero To Cruising) as they make preparations for future cruising. You just have to grab life by the YARN (balls of) and move forward.
05/15/2012, Kingston, Ontario
Tumours Know no Boundaries
We have just arrived home from our appointment with the neurosurgeon. Dr. Wallace was very pleasant and did his best to put us at ease. The bottom line is, the tumour in Al's brain has taken up residence in a bad piece of real estate. It is dangerously close to crowding in on his pituitary gland. It is also compromising one of his major eye nerves. Our best option is to have "some" of the tumour removed. Dr. Wallace said that its in such an awkward place that the best option is to remove as big a portion of it as is safe but that he could not remove it all. He also inferred that we will get to know each other well because he suggested we treat this like a chronic illness, in that once he has taken out as much as is safe, Al will need every six month MRI's to watch for more growth and possibly radiation to limit growth.
He is still very confident this is benign although biopsies will be taken at the time of surgery. He sent us home to talk and be sure but also sent us with the paperwork to complete for surgery. There are things that need to be done before surgery happens. A physical from our GP, blood work and another date with MRI for more views which he will put into some form of 3D model that will be used to guide his surgery.
We walked down town after our consultation and scored fresh asparagus and rhubarb from the last two vendors at the market. Then we chatted over beer and pub food at The Pilot House. So Surgery is on the radar but we won't know the exact date until the check list is complete. He did say Al's eye will not return to its former normal looking state as the damage has been done.
We have no idea where this puts our future cruising plans, nor do we care at this moment. As things progress we will be sure to post.
05/08/2012, Kingston, Ontario
Yesterday we enjoyed a nice afternoon walk at LeMoines Point. This conservation area is near the Collins Bay Marina where we departed 3 years ago this July. Interesting how life can change in 3 years.
Trilliums are the provincial flower for Ontario and it is a crime to pick them. They are out in abundance right now, we got a jump on the annual Mother's Day Flower Walk held there. Mackenzie and Jason have been visiting so it was a nice diversion for Al and for me.
05/06/2012, Kingston, Ontario
Expect the UNEXPECTED
Although I do not consider myself religious, I do believe the universe works in ways that protect us. The timing of me being asked to exit the United States has turned out to be Universe sent. Since late last fall Al has been having difficulty with his left eye which continuously wants to stray and gaze outwardly. It started giving him minor visual disturbance along with occasional nausea trying to focus. I sent him off to the Family Dr. who was perplexed and who sent him off for an urgent appointment at the Emergency Ophthalmology Clinic. After spending about 4 hours at that clinic, having various drops, waiting time and various ophthalmologists taking turns looking at his eye. He was sent for an urgent CT scan with enhancement. We were given instructions to return in two days for the results.
The next morning almost before we had our morning coffee we got a call from the clinic saying they needed to see him that morning. That was a huge clue something was amiss. When we arrived at the clinic, Al said to Dr. Hurst, "This can't be good news" to which Dr. Hurst replied, "I'll cut to the chase, You have a 3 cm brain tumour behind your left eye". He then said he'd give us a few moments and left us alone. A few moments was not enough time to digest that, really. Of course your minds raced to worst case scenarios. When he returned he explained he had spoken to and had referred us to a Dr. Chris Wallace a neurosurgeon on a semi emergent basis. So we will see Dr. Wallace on Tuesday May 15th and he has ordered an MRI which will take place next Sunday , Mothers day at 8 in the morning. We have heard from Dr. Wallace who looked at the CT scan and he has advised us that the tumour is benign in his opinion. WHEW YAY.
For any of our American followers this is an example of how socialized health care works in Canada under a triaged model. We are happy with the way things are moving along. Fortunately Al's eye is in excellent health, so we just wait and see where we go from here.
Thank you Universe for watching out for us.
04/29/2012, Kingston, Ontario
Al and I were going out to a friends 50th birthday party last night. I thought it might be a picture opportunity. I like to think we have the style of the couple from "Dance Me to the End of Love" in the Frank Vetriano picture on our wall. That has been a favourite photo of mine for years.
04/24/2012, Kingston, Ontario
I finished the fingerless mitts today, buttons and all. Its still chilly here for April so the Birthday Girl should get some use out of them this spring.