Last night as I was trying to wash my face and brush my teeth, I kept feeling like I was going to pass out. I was really weak. I knew it wasn't my hypoglycemia because I had just had a chicken salad sandwich. But I drank apple juice anyway.
I just couldn't stand up. And it was really late, because I went out to the movie after work.
I called my Doctor's office and spoke to the Nurse on Duty. Her advice is that if you are going to pass out, and you are alone, you need to get to the hospital - so call an ambulance and go to the hospital. I called two friends to tell them I was going to call an ambulance. I got one persons voice mail. And the second person was awake, and said instead that she would come and pick me up.
I called my Landlord and told him what was happening. He was wide awake to. Doesn't anyone whom I know go to bed at a decent time ?
My landlord and I waited on the apartment doorstep for my friend to arrive. She then drove me to Glendale Memorial Hospital . I went to the Emergency Room.
First, its kind of funny - because the emergency is no where near like any of the TV shows . Its pretty boring, with sleepy people sitting in the chairs waiting to be called in. Then there is the same amount of people who are waiting there and I don't think they are there to go in. They just want a warm room to spend the night. Two of these people were smart, and sat far away out of the receptionists sight. One guy, who seemed to be on serious drugs, maybe heroin, was not to smart and he sat right were the receptionist could see him. Soon a security guard came to get him. I hope they sent him to a drug facility, and didn't just kick him out on the streets.
We waited there for about an hour. I was trying to figure out what was wrong with the other people in the emergency room, and why they were there.
Finally they called us in.
When telling the staff person that I couldn't have epinephrine because I was hypoglycemic, her response was "How long have you been diabetic?"
Oh dear Lord ....NO - I straightened her out on the differences real quick.
Next I was in a room with a doctor seeing me. They looked at my Biopsy scars and ordered blood tests, urine tests and other such things.
The plan was to put me on an IV, in case I was dehydrated. I mean, we are in the middle of a heat wave.
I have such tiny veins. A really nice lady with a Hungarian accent knew how to find my veins. I then had a needle permanently inserted in my wrist with tape wrapped around my wrist to hold it in place. This way they could take blood and give me an IV - or what ever else - all from the same spot.
I was peeing so much. Was it all that apple juice I drank before I left, or was something else happening? I managed to go to the Bathroom about 3xs with that needle taped to my wrist. If that wouldn't make me queasy and pass out, I don't know what would.
Then they hooked me up to this whole monitoring system - blood pressure, heart rate, stock quotes - gee, there was a TV and all my vital info was on it, being read by all the attached wires.
A staff person came in and gave me an EKG. I thought - Wow, thats thorough. At least they are thinking about what could make me pass out.
I layed there with a Saline Drip, as my friend and I watched an old movie on Turner Classic Network .
Wow, at least this place had Cable.
Finally about 5 AM they had my test results. They gave me copies to give my doctor. Gave me a prescription for Vitamin Tablets. And then they sent me home, telling me to see my regular doctor
in a few days.
A few days later, my doctor would just tell me that this whole episode was "Acute Stress".
*** UPDATE: A few weeks later my Breast Surgeon runs blood tests, and tells me that I am Anemic, she wants to make sure the multi-vitamin I am taking has iron it and
she wants me to add red meat back into my diet twice a week. Guess what ? It works, I'm not weak anymore. But more on this in a future post ....
I volunteered at The Egyptian Theatre tonight. I have to keep trying to do the regular things I always do, or I will just go crazy thinking about having Breast Cancer. I find things are easier if I keep my mind off of it.
Anyway, tonight they were screening "Duck" - this is a really cute movie about a man who adopts a Duck. His wife dies, he is about to kill himself and the little Duckling appears. He has so many bills from his wife's death, that he becomes homeless. And he and the duck travel around Los Angeles trying to live. It really is an adorable heart-felt movie.
A friend had free passes to see The Island
over at The Grove I have to say there were alot of explosions and crashes and
car chases. And product placements.
It was an interesting plot, and I was actually worried in the beginning that I wouldn't be able to follow it. It just seemed so complicated. But I caught
on to it. Its also a love story.
I just thought the two lead characters were miscast. Ewan McGregor and Scarlett Johansson
They just aren't Action Hero actors. If this film had been made a few years back with Nicolas Cage or Bruce Willis - it would have been a completely different film.
The friend I went with is a 3X cancer survivor. He's had Chemo in the 80's, 90's and then just a few years ago. But he still leads a full life, and if you met him you could not tell by looking at him that these things had happened to him. So even tho I have a different kind of cancer that he does, it still gives me hope that I will make it through this. Well, that - and the fact that he had free movie tickets......
It really has been hard to post to the blog. I am writing this entry nearly two weeks after the fact.
Either I am so busy with doctors appointments, or I am working overtime at the office to make up for the doctors appointments.
I don't want to cut into my sick time or vacation time, because I will need to use it when I am in the hospital and recovering.
And then, there is the depression factor. When all my emotions have been completely zapped, and there is nothing left.
I so much do not want this Blog to become a "Poor Little Me" blog, or a blog about Cancer. It was meant to be a fun blog about my exploits around Hollywood and Los Angeles. And now both the blog, and my life, are going in weird directions.
Today I had another Doctor's Appointment. This time with my family doctor. It was mainly to get referrals to Breast Surgeons.
Of course, he threw the word "Mastectomy" out there. I guess they want to get you to start thinking about what to expect, in case it does happen.
He gave me a copy of the Pathology Report that said "Poorly Differentiated Infiltrating Ductal Carcinoma". This is 70% of all breast cancers. Its cancer in a milk duct.
He told me the next few steps are a long process, and I can expect alot of medical tests. Well, he is right about that. I am surprised I haven't started to glow in the dark from all the nuclear medicine.
I asked about alternative treatments, and of course being a medical doctor he didn't know anything about them. I am most interested in Vitamin Therapy. I spent the afternoon calling some holistic doctors in a holistic magazine I picked up from the health food store. No one knew anything about Vitamin Therapy or alternative treatments for cancer. It seemed many of these "doctors" can only help you overcome stress, improve your sex life, or look younger. They don't have any experience in life-threatening disease.
I did find the Annie AppleSeed Project which lists alot of info about Breast Cancer and Complementary/Alternative Treatments for Breast Cancer. This website has a ton of information. I spent along time reading it.
And I have started to read two good books
Your Life In Your Hands : Understanding, Preventing, and Overcoming Breast Cancer by Jane Plant
The Breast Cancer Prevention and Recovery Diet by Suzannah Olivier
So with all this new information, I went and did my grocery shopping at Whole Foods Market .
I guess I will be staying away from additives and preservatives and all the big long scientific words that end up on food labels.
One thing I want to do it start posting more recipes to my Recipe Pages .
Since I am doing so much cooking to make sure I eat right, I want to post the good recipes on the website.
Thats if I have time ......
Yeah, Its Cancer
I figured it was going to be a while before I heard back from the doctors. They say 4 business days, but sometimes the Lab gets backed up. Or if the medical tests turn out to be nothing then they completely forget to call you and just send you a letter. So I was figuring it was going to be at least towards the end of the week, or maybe the beginning of next week before I heard anything about the Biopsy Results.
So I was surprised when the Doctor from the Breast Center left a voice mail on my office number around mid-morning. I got a sinking feeling in my stomach that said:
"They are calling earlier than they said they would. Somethings not right."
I told my coworker to not let anyone interrupt me. And I took my cell phone and some kleenex into an empty office, and shut the door.
Looking out the windows from the high rise office, I could see East Hollywood and Los Feliz.
And I called the doctor.
Me: "Hi, this is Donna Grayson. I am returning your phone call. "
Doctor: "Hi, Donna. We got the results of your biopsy back. Where are you ? Are you at home ? "
Me: "No, I'm at work. "
Doctor: "Do you want to go home and call me from there ? "
Me: "Well, I'm here in an office with the door shut, so just tell me. "
Doctor: "Oh, Maybe you want to go home first. "
Me: "Okay, So I already know its bad news because you don't want to tell me while I'm here. The door to the office is shut, so just tell me now. I already have it figured out. "
Doctor: "Okay, yes, the biopsy results came back and it is Breast Cancer. "
I asked exactly what kind of cancer. She rambled off 4 big long words. I tried to write them down, but gave up immediately. I will get the name tomorrow when I see my regular doctor.
She mentioned some things about it being very small, and that usually this type responds well to Lumpectomy and Radiation.
I tried to get more details. But she is just the Doctor who does the Diagnosis. I have to work my treatment out between my regular doctor and a Specialist.
Doctor : "Whatever you do, get a Surgeon who specializes in Breast Surgery."
And she gave me the name of someone she recommends.
After she hung up, I sat there, stunned. Used alot of kleenex. And I just figured, well theres not much else I can do at this point.
I have Breast Cancer, so I'll just have to do whatever they tell me.
I carried kleenex in my pocket the rest of the day.
My body seems to feel best after getting lots of sleep. So I have just let myself sleep in these last few days, sometimes not waking until one in the afternoon.
Today, being Sunday, I made other arrangements for someone else to teach Sunday School to the 3 year olds at church. I just slept in.
Finally, I made my way over to Arclight Cinemas to catch an evening show of Bewitched .
It was nice to just sit back and watch a comedy and be entertained. And I am glad I took these last few days off to just relax and recover from the Biopsy.
08/26/1990 - 09/02/1990 12/07/2003 - 12/14/2003 12/14/2003 - 12/21/2003 12/21/2003 - 12/28/2003 12/28/2003 - 01/04/2004 01/11/2004 - 01/18/2004 01/25/2004 - 02/01/2004 02/01/2004 - 02/08/2004 02/08/2004 - 02/15/2004 03/07/2004 - 03/14/2004 04/18/2004 - 04/25/2004 05/23/2004 - 05/30/2004 05/30/2004 - 06/06/2004 06/06/2004 - 06/13/2004 06/27/2004 - 07/04/2004 08/22/2004 - 08/29/2004 09/05/2004 - 09/12/2004 09/26/2004 - 10/03/2004 10/10/2004 - 10/17/2004 11/14/2004 - 11/21/2004 12/26/2004 - 01/02/2005 01/02/2005 - 01/09/2005 01/23/2005 - 01/30/2005 01/30/2005 - 02/06/2005 02/06/2005 - 02/13/2005 02/13/2005 - 02/20/2005 02/20/2005 - 02/27/2005 02/27/2005 - 03/06/2005 03/06/2005 - 03/13/2005 03/13/2005 - 03/20/2005 03/20/2005 - 03/27/2005 03/27/2005 - 04/03/2005 04/03/2005 - 04/10/2005 04/10/2005 - 04/17/2005 04/17/2005 - 04/24/2005 04/24/2005 - 05/01/2005 05/01/2005 - 05/08/2005 05/08/2005 - 05/15/2005 05/15/2005 - 05/22/2005 05/22/2005 - 05/29/2005 05/29/2005 - 06/05/2005 06/05/2005 - 06/12/2005 06/12/2005 - 06/19/2005 06/19/2005 - 06/26/2005 06/26/2005 - 07/03/2005 07/03/2005 - 07/10/2005 07/10/2005 - 07/17/2005 07/17/2005 - 07/24/2005 07/24/2005 - 07/31/2005 07/31/2005 - 08/07/2005 08/07/2005 - 08/14/2005 08/14/2005 - 08/21/2005 08/21/2005 - 08/28/2005 08/28/2005 - 09/04/2005 09/04/2005 - 09/11/2005 09/11/2005 - 09/18/2005 09/18/2005 - 09/25/2005 09/25/2005 - 10/02/2005 10/02/2005 - 10/09/2005 10/09/2005 - 10/16/2005 10/16/2005 - 10/23/2005 10/23/2005 - 10/30/2005 10/30/2005 - 11/06/2005 11/06/2005 - 11/13/2005 11/13/2005 - 11/20/2005 11/20/2005 - 11/27/2005 11/27/2005 - 12/04/2005 12/04/2005 - 12/11/2005 12/11/2005 - 12/18/2005 12/18/2005 - 12/25/2005 12/25/2005 - 01/01/2006 01/01/2006 - 01/08/2006 01/08/2006 - 01/15/2006 01/15/2006 - 01/22/2006 01/22/2006 - 01/29/2006 01/29/2006 - 02/05/2006 02/05/2006 - 02/12/2006 02/12/2006 - 02/19/2006 02/19/2006 - 02/26/2006 02/26/2006 - 03/05/2006 03/05/2006 - 03/12/2006 03/12/2006 - 03/19/2006 03/19/2006 - 03/26/2006 03/26/2006 - 04/02/2006 04/02/2006 - 04/09/2006 04/09/2006 - 04/16/2006 04/16/2006 - 04/23/2006 04/23/2006 - 04/30/2006 04/30/2006 - 05/07/2006 05/07/2006 - 05/14/2006 05/14/2006 - 05/21/2006 05/21/2006 - 05/28/2006 05/28/2006 - 06/04/2006 06/04/2006 - 06/11/2006 06/11/2006 - 06/18/2006 06/18/2006 - 06/25/2006 06/25/2006 - 07/02/2006 07/02/2006 - 07/09/2006 07/09/2006 - 07/16/2006 07/16/2006 - 07/23/2006 07/23/2006 - 07/30/2006 07/30/2006 - 08/06/2006 08/06/2006 - 08/13/2006 08/13/2006 - 08/20/2006 08/20/2006 - 08/27/2006 08/27/2006 - 09/03/2006 09/03/2006 - 09/10/2006 09/10/2006 - 09/17/2006 09/17/2006 - 09/24/2006 09/24/2006 - 10/01/2006 10/01/2006 - 10/08/2006 10/08/2006 - 10/15/2006 10/15/2006 - 10/22/2006 10/22/2006 - 10/29/2006 10/29/2006 - 11/05/2006 11/05/2006 - 11/12/2006 11/12/2006 - 11/19/2006 11/19/2006 - 11/26/2006 11/26/2006 - 12/03/2006 12/03/2006 - 12/10/2006 12/10/2006 - 12/17/2006 12/17/2006 - 12/24/2006 12/24/2006 - 12/31/2006 12/31/2006 - 01/07/2007 01/07/2007 - 01/14/2007 01/14/2007 - 01/21/2007 01/21/2007 - 01/28/2007 01/28/2007 - 02/04/2007 02/04/2007 - 02/11/2007 02/11/2007 - 02/18/2007 02/18/2007 - 02/25/2007 02/25/2007 - 03/04/2007 03/04/2007 - 03/11/2007 03/11/2007 - 03/18/2007 03/18/2007 - 03/25/2007 03/25/2007 - 04/01/2007 04/01/2007 - 04/08/2007 04/08/2007 - 04/15/2007 04/15/2007 - 04/22/2007 04/22/2007 - 04/29/2007 04/29/2007 - 05/06/2007 05/06/2007 - 05/13/2007 05/13/2007 - 05/20/2007 05/20/2007 - 05/27/2007 05/27/2007 - 06/03/2007 06/03/2007 - 06/10/2007 06/10/2007 - 06/17/2007 06/17/2007 - 06/24/2007 06/24/2007 - 07/01/2007 07/01/2007 - 07/08/2007 07/08/2007 - 07/15/2007 07/15/2007 - 07/22/2007 07/22/2007 - 07/29/2007 07/29/2007 - 08/05/2007 08/05/2007 - 08/12/2007 08/12/2007 - 08/19/2007 08/19/2007 - 08/26/2007 08/26/2007 - 09/02/2007 09/02/2007 - 09/09/2007 09/09/2007 - 09/16/2007 09/16/2007 - 09/23/2007 09/23/2007 - 09/30/2007 09/30/2007 - 10/07/2007 10/07/2007 - 10/14/2007 10/14/2007 - 10/21/2007 10/21/2007 - 10/28/2007 10/28/2007 - 11/04/2007
DonnaGrayson.com Main Page
Donna's Music, Poetry, Acting Resume, and More ...