So about that mammogram…

July 24, 2021

Welp, I had my mammogram and ultrasound on Tuesday and I heard nothing on Wednesday and thought I was fine. And I heard nothing on Thursday and thought I was fine. I checked the patient portal first thing Friday morning and nothing was uploaded and I thought I was fine. And then I received the phone call at 11am Friday that things were not fine.

I need three areas (which are hopefully benign cysts) in my left breast biopsied. I had a biopsy of my right breast done in October 2019 and it was benign. The easiest explanation that I am clinging to like a person clinging to a ledge of a skyscraper is that breasts change when women approach menopause and maybe Left is just catching up to Right and the baseline changed enough to be concerned. For what it’s worth, Right is fine.

I can’t feel any of these cysts and Doc Ladyparts didn’t feel them either in June.

I cried a bit Friday morning and to be honest my Friday afternoon was less than productive. Sorry, TNP. But mostly I’m still dead inside and am just like… “fuck it.” Fall ’19 was an emotional shitshow and then Covid came, and even after these few months of faked normalcy I find myself completely unable to tie myself into knots over anything anymore. I’ll go through the procedures and follow whatever paths I have to.

But ye gods THREE biopsies? Three opportunities for a bad result? Ugh. My appointment is the first week in August, the day before I’m supposed to go to Hershey with Nephews A&B and their entourage. Thoughts and prayers are appreciated because your girl Kim here is not a brave person.

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Friday 5: Everything in its place

July 16, 2021

Happy Friday! This week is my summer Friday, but it wasn’t supposed to be. Fun fact: the Big!Work!Upgrade! that was supposed to launch yesterday has been pushed to September. I was planning on forgoing my Summer Friday today to work on pressing upgrade issues (if any), but it’s not necessary. Moving the project has left me kind of adrift, because I had the next 2 months of work planned out in my head – upgrade, bug squashing, re-writing/redirecting reports to new server, PTO in September before the fiscal year ends, start the tasks I tabled until after upgrade was finished. Now I have this chasm of free work time. However, it’s not enough time to properly complete the projects I had pushed until after the upgrade. I guess I’ll take a whack of PTO in August instead?

I went down the shore to relax, but it was so terribly hot and muggy that I felt worse afterward. Usually it’s an escape from the humidity here at home but not today. Not at all. Also today I learned that the sun’s rays can come through my beach umbrella’s cloth and burn me even if I have sunscreen on and never leave the shade of the umbrella. Am tired and crispy.

photo of my beach umbrella
Et tu, Brute??

Here’s the Friday 5: This week’s theme is everything in its place. I see the word organization in these questions and I am excited. I love organization, because it doesn’t come naturally to me. All of the things you see me try to do with planners and bins and labels and the continuous reorganizing of my closets is me desperately trying to stay on top of everything.

I haven’t interviewed for a job in almost 10 years (wow.) but here is an interview question that historically have knocked the socks of of interviewers.

Interviewer: What is your greatest strength/weakness. (doesn’t matter what they say)
Me: (pause, breathe, smile) I have to say my greatest strength is organization, and that’s because it is my greatest weakness. Since it doesn’t come naturally to me, I have to excel at planning projects, writing notes, and having a tidy workstation.
Interviewer: (hands me briefcase full of cash)

  1. What is the least organized area of your daily life?
    Don’t look in my garage. Just don’t. It’s the boneyard of every project we’ve tried.
  2. What is the most organized area of your daily life?
    My photo backup system. Photos are backed up to Dropbox from my phone. Once a month, I take the photos out of Dropbox and drop them into my paid OneDrive account. I have a Google backup set up to my local OneDrive folder. In the OneDrive folder are subfolders for each year; each year’s folder has 12 folders, one for each month.
  3. How well do you handle disruptions of your routines?
    I used to handle it well until the pandemic, now if a routine is disrupted I’m completely thrown into a tizzy.
  4. How do you respond to unexpected blocks of unstructured time?
    At home I’m fine with it. Something always needs to be organized and there are 280 books on my Goodreads ‘to read’ list. At work? See above.
  5. How structured is your time this weekend?
    Other than weekend housekeeping, I have no plans and I’m 100% okay with it. I’m sadly skipping Movie Night because I’m likely going to fall asleep as soon as I hit post.

Forgot to add this earlier in the week: Murphy’s leg is fine now — it had improved so much by Tuesday night that I cancelled his vet appointment or else it would have been one of those visits where I try to convince the vet of his injury while he’s parkouring off of the exam room walls. Tonight he leapt up and snatched a firefly out of mid-air.

murphy, me, and my eyebrows.
This is why we can’t have nice things.

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Show us your books July 2021

July 13, 2021

Whoa-ho! Look at me with my fat FIVE books this month. I even had to redo the layout of my SUYB title image! My secret? I go outside and leave my phone inside. Or I read inside and leave my phone in another room. The phone has been my enemy lately. I’ll read a few pages and wonder what the weather is going to be later and grab the phone to check my weather app. I’ll read a few pages and be reminded of a person and grab the phone to check their socials. This has happened before and distancing works for me.

show us your book tile

Onto the books! I use the Goodreads rating system, which is:

  • One star: did not like it
  • Two stars: it was ok
  • Three stars: liked it
  • Four stars: really liked it
  • Five stars: it was amazing

Back on the shelf: When Justice Sleeps – so help me I could NOT get into this book because it seems very complicated. I feel terrible about it. I used to enjoy legal thrillers so I’m holding out hope. Because I own my copy, I’m tabling it for later instead of calling it a true DNF.

The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue – V.E. Schwab
In 1714 in the French Countryside, old maid (as in, early 20s) Addie LaRue is to be married off to a widower to take care of his house and children. She pleads with the Old Gods to save her from this fate so that she can live a life on her own terms and unencumbered by others. Addie receives her wish, but the terms are that she can live as long as she wants to, but she is unable to be remembered by others. This means she’s unable to own things, create things, or build meaningful relationships. Addie learns to live within the boundaries of her curse. But one day she meets someone who remembers her. Four stars and you’ll root for Addie.

People We Meet on Vacation – Emily Henry
Adorable and quite possibly the most millennial book I’ve read yet. Poppy met Alex in college and they became vacation buddies, taking a trip each summer. As they mature, the trips change as well, but something happens on their last trip that could fracture their friendship forever! The big plot point was that Poppy and Alex are so different from each other! But I never thought that Poppy was so scandalously wild, nor did I think that Alex was so tremendously boring. He’s a teacher with a doctorate who loves his family and she, like tens of thousands of other people, is a writer. Their only difference is really what they thought of their hometowns. And I think that’s what kept me from 5 stars – the telling and not showing of how different they were. Four stars and maybe pick up the phone once in a while, kids.

The book People We Meet on Vacation on top of sand.
Customary beach read on the beach photo

The Last Thing He Told Me – Laura Dave
Another book borrowed from the Library of Mom. I could not put this down and the only reason I did was because I had to drive home from the shore. I picked it back up the next day and finished it. It’s suspenseful but not violent. Our protagonists, Hannah and Bailey, figure things out using their own brains and hearts. I read Dave’s “Hello Sunshine” a few years back and only gave it two stars. I’m glad I didn’t let that book deter me from this one. And for those who’ve read it already, I’m tucking a spoilery paragraph at the bottom of this post, below my email update promo but above the comments. Five stars! Believe the hype.

House Lessons: Renovating a Life – Erica Bauermeister
A sweet memoir of renovating a very troubled old home and the lessons learned along the way about what makes a house a home. There is a goodly amount of musings on parenting and marriage cobbled in, which makes me think an editor didn’t want a book just about a home renovation which — why? I’m totally here for a book about renovating an old house. Whenever the story veered to her children or her marriage I just wanted another demo story. Four stars.

Practical Demonkeeping – Christopher Moore. (First in the Pine Cove series) From time to time I like to read a book by a male author to get their rare perspective on the world, especially on what women are like and how we think. Like how we’re worried about our own hairy legs or how any hold we have on a man could be explained away via witchcraft or that we always put out. This one was recommended to me because I’ve been enjoying the Discworld series. I powered through this story about a demon and his keeper, the Djinn hunting him, and the beleaguered residents of Pine Cove, California, but it was not for me. There are homophobic/transphobic observations and descriptions about appearances that were fine in 92 (well, they were never fine but they were commonplace) but now land with the elegance of a gigantic record scratch. Two stars and only the character of Augustus Brine kept it from one-star territory. I read his book “Fool” a few years back and also gave it two stars, so I believe I’ll be leaving Mr. Moore behind.

Currently Reading: Sunny Days: The Children’s Television Revolution That Changed America

All of my book lists and reviews are on Goodreads.

This a part of the Show us Your Books linkup from Jana Says and Life According to Steph. If you want to read more bloggers gush about the books they’ve read this month, click the button below and have fun!

Life According to Steph

Other SUYB posts:

January | February | March | April | May | June
February | March | Spring/Summer | September | October | November | Year-end review
January | February | March |April | June | July | August | December
January | February | March | April | May | June | July | August | September | October | November | December

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Maybe this is my New Jersey speaking but I’d have knocked him clean out at the end. You leave me with your kid and your web of lies and show the eff back up on my turf years after I fixed it all? Here’s a live edge wooden shelf right to your face. BOOM. GOODNIGHT.