"If providence did beards devise,
To prove the wearers of them wise,
A fulsome goat would then, by nature,
Excel each other human creature." - Thomas D'Urfey

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Monday, October 29, 2012

One Last Adventure

I know.  You are all tired of the Little UnDead.  Me too.  Nonetheless, we have one last tale to tell.  I promise.  This will be the last you'll hear of him for awhile.  I hope.  Besides, I'm running out of adjectives.  Oy.

Okay, so the last place that Meager Malfeasant went, you are just not going to believe.  Are you ready for this?  He went to ... wait for it ... a Doll Show.  Are you disappointed?  Disconcerted?  Worried?  I'm all of those and probably a few more I haven't thought of yet.  Still, it is what it is, and that's where he went so I suppose we'll just have to pull up our big goat panties and deal with it, eh?  Of course some goats' panties are bigger than others and thus more difficult to pull up.  Take Boo for example.  There's a whole lotta' area to cover there, I can tell you.  Sort of like trying to canopy the Gobi Desert.  Can you imagine?  Wait.  I'm getting off track.  So sorry.  It's just such an immense thought.

Anyway, back to the Brief and Breathless.  Yes, he went to a Doll Show.  Why?  Who knows what reasoning lurks in the heart and mind of the Cramped and Cold?  I don't know about you, but t'is most certainly a puzzlement to me.

However, while there, our intrepid Infantile and Inert met up with a couple of the Goatmother's friends, one of which is a survivor just like the Goatmother.  And survivors they are, of the highest order!  A wonderful lady, to be sure, full of grace and wit.  And the other friend is a fabulous soul as well.  Lucky Goatmother to know these two, and lucky Wee and Wasted to get to have his picture taken with them.

 

I think the Goatmother's friend was actually trying to fix him up with that Midge doll.  He has a thing for redheads.  Anyway, that Mini Masher had quite a time at the Doll Show.  Below you can see that he managed to drum up quite a few prospects at the lovely two-headed ladies' table.


And of course he felt right at home here.  See the coffin there in the lower right hand corner?  I can tell you he had his eye on that.  Can you say C.O.V.E.T.?



So there you have it.  You can breathe easy now.  You won't have to hear anymore about the Cute and Cadaverous' adventures for at least another whole year.  I know I'm relieved. 

"Life is either a great adventure or nothing."  - Helen Keller

I'm not sure exactly how that fits in with someone who has no life, but, hay, at least he has the adventure part down pat.

Now then.  Be sure to tune in on Halloween day because you will see one of the scariest things you will ever encounter.  Be afraid. Be very afraid.


Sunday, October 28, 2012

And The Bat Goes On ...

Well, maybe not a bat at the moment, but that little Grassy and Gone still has a couple more adventures you haven't heard about.  Remember?  I told you we weren't through with him yet.  Sorry, but I did warn you.

Anyway, after that Dinky Dunderhead finished getting his thrills in the Chemotherapy department, he decided he needed a little break.  So, off he went to the next building to visit the World's Greatest Scone Maker.  You can see him, below, waiting at the counter to place his order.



I have to tell you, the World's Greatest Scone Maker does, indeed, make the world's greatest scones.  They are like no other scone you've ever had crumbly and luscious.  Not only does the World's Greatest Scone Maker make scones, but she also makes delectable soups, salads and sandwiches.  She uses everything organic that she can and makes it all with the largest dollop of pure love added.  She is an extraordinary person.  She even has a place in her heart for the little Puny and Putrid.  Now that ought to prove her worth for sure.  Just how many folks do you think can actually tolerate the little Insipid and Idiotic?  Here she is mixing up a batch of wonderfulness.


Isn't she a doll?  Why I bet she'd even give me a few Peanuts if I were to go in there.  Come to think of it, I wonder why the Goatmother never takes me?  Some little Green and Ghastly's have all the luck.  Just look at him trying to get on their good side.  Oy.


Well, the Goatmother may be done with radiation, but I'd be willing to bet she'll be back here visiting.  You can't keep a good SconeMother down.  But even if she doesn't go back for a scone, these ladies are so wonderful, she'll likely go just to keep in touch. Like the sign says, it's 'A Little Cafe, With A Whole Lotta' Love'!

Now then, should you chance to go to The Sweet Beginnings yourself, you'll find something very extra special about the World's Greatest Scone Maker.  There's much more here than meets the eye, and if you ask her how she came to be where she is, she'll tell you this: "Sometimes you just gotta' get out of your own way and let things happen."  I think the same could be said for living life to the fullest, don't you think?   Hmmm ... a fellow philosopher.  Who knew?

"Approach love and cooking with reckless abandon." -Dalai Lama

And, life, Mr. Lama.  Approach life that way too.  And Peanuts.  (Just thought I ought to add Peanuts.  You know.  Just in case...)

Friday, October 26, 2012

We Interrupt Our Regularly Scheduled Program ...

... to bring you breaking news.  Well, really, nothing is broken.  Actually we are hoping it is fixed.  The news is that the Goatmother had her last radiation treatment today.

This is good news, but we meet it with mixed feelings.  You see, here's the thing.  When you get that diagnosis - when you hear those words - suddenly your life changes.  Forever.  Not just for a day.  Not just for a week or even a month or a few months.  It. Changes. Forever.  Cancer takes away a lot of things, but the worst is probably your feeling of security.  Suddenly you come face to face with your mortality - a thing we all know we have to face, but a thing so easy to ignore.

And then there is the time.  This took six months of precious time.  Never, ever, wish a person with cancer a 'speedy' recovery because there is no such thing.  And six months is minor in comparison to what many people with cancer have to face.

Chemotherapy is probably the hardest to endure, but make no mistake about it, radiation is no cake walk.  Everyone says, 'Oh, radiation.  Well, that's SO much easier', then they smile and go merrily on their way because, let's face it, it's just radiation.  You can just go on about your normal life now.  Wrong.  There's the exhaustion that no one escapes.  There is the disruption of your life from having to go to appointments every single day.  And then there are the burns.  Nope.  A cake walk it ain't.

No one that has cancer has an easy time.  And, you know, it doesn't matter if your cancer is Stage 1 or Stage 4.  Every person's experience is difficult at best.  Granted some folks have more to endure than others, but it doesn't make any difference.  It's all difficult and it's all important.  Don't make the mistake of saying things like, 'Oh, well, you didn't feel so well, but I can tell you stories ... '  Never denigrate someone else's experience.  What is that old saying about walking a mile in someone else's shoes?

But for all that cancer takes away, fortunately it gives too.  Suddenly the brightness of other peoples' souls shine out like lighthouse beacons on a stormy night.  Safe and warm and all-encompassing, helping to guide you through.  What would we do without them?  I certainly do not want to even entertain the thought.  Faith in and love of your fellow creatures on this mercurial and unpredictable journey we call life.  That's what cancer gives.  And it gives you new eyes with which to see.  Suddenly some things don't look quite so bad, and others look too wonderful for words.  It gives a new appreciation of so many things we previously took for granted.  It's all important and it's all good.  Remember?

And so, my friends, the journey doesn't end here.  We've only really  just managed the ever so rocky beginning.   We want to thank each and every one of you who have stayed the course along with us.  Our thanks and our words will never be enough to truly express our gratitude.  We have been graced, blessed, and honored beyond what we deserve.  And if you are one of those folks who puts off having those yearly tests because they are just too much trouble , or you don't have time, or you don't want to be 'exposed' to too much radiation, or any of the other one million and one excuses we manage to come up with, trust me.  It isn't too much trouble, and you do have time, and the amount of radiation you receive in an x-ray or a mammogram is just a drop in the bucket compared to what it could be.  Just. Do. It.

Special thanks to our friend,  Mrs. Micawber , for providing the most appropriate quotation for this post:

“The realm of Sauron is ended! The Ring-bearer has fulfilled his Quest.” And as the Captains gazed south to the Land of Mordor, it seemed to them that, black against the pall of cloud, there rose a huge shape of shadow, impenetrable, lightning-crowned, filling all the sky. Enormous it reared above the world, and stretched out towards them a vast threatening hand, terrible but impotent: for even as it leaned over them, a great wind took it, and it was all blown away, and passed; and then a hush fell."

Welcome to the hush ... 


Wednesday, October 24, 2012

A Breath of Fresh Air

We interrupt this adventure to bring you The World's Greatest Integrative Radiation Oncologist!


After all the folderol about that ridiculously grim Little Dumb and Deceased, isn't it pleasant to see this fabulous face?  First of all, it isn't green.  But more than that, this is the face of one fantastically intelligent and caring Doctor.  And one with a winning personality to boot.  Now who could ask for more than that?   She has taken her skill and dedication to the level of an art form.  I might even trust her with my Peanuts, and that's saying just a whole lot.  Thank you for taking such good care of our Goatmother!

“You give but little when you give of your possessions. It is when you give of yourself that you truly give.” - Kahlil Gibran


 

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

The Continuing Adventures of the Little UnDead (Part deux)

Okay, well, here I am!  Back as promised.  Did you forget?  Did you try?  I know.  Since it is regarding the little Scant and Insufficient, I'd try to forget too ... if only I had that luxury.  Oh, well.  On with the story!

So, since our Malachite No-More managed to make it through the whole scary Radiation process, he decided to get in on more of the action.  Of course he did.  What a glutton for punishment.  So onward he went to his next stop ... the Chemotherapy wing of the Cancer Center.  Naturally.  Are we surprised?  I know I'm not even raising an eyebrow.  Come to think of it, I'm not sure I even have any eyebrows.  Nonetheless, I will somehow manage to adequately relay my non-amazement.  I can be very expressive when I try.

Anyway, back to the Chemotherapy.  Yep, that little Sage-Colored Perished was delighted at the prospect of giving chemicals a whirl.  After all, if the Goatmother could do it, he certainly figured he could.  Overconfidence never looked so green.

Here he is being greeted by the World's Greatest Medical Oncology Nurse and the World's Greatest Patient Navigator.  Do we see the same looks of gleeful anticipation worn recently by those Radiation Technicians?  Hmmm ...


Anyway, the next step was to check in.  Here we see the microscopic Lime Lout kindly helping out behind the desk.  After all, he didn't want anyone to get the information wrong.  The only problem was that he couldn't remember his date of birth and they didn't have a place for 'date of turn' or 'date of first bite' or 'date someone stupidly thought to create such a menance'.  None of those things.  And still she smiles.


Now, I want you to know that the Chemotherapy wing has style.  They actually decorated for Halloween!  That short Stunted and Stiff felt right at home.  They have a way of doing that there -  making their patients feel right at home.  Isn't that great?  I bet if they had any goat patients, they'd probably supply them with Peanuts.  I'm just sayin' ...  in case they read this.  Or get any goat patients.  Or any Peanuts they might want to send home with existing patients. It never hurts to make suggestions.


After checking in and visiting with the decor,  it was time for treatment.  Here you can see the little Undersized and Useless waiting in the chair with bated breath.


Of course he is a bit more height-challenged than your average patient so ... he had to have a little booster seat.


Then in came the nurse and set right to hooking up our intrepid little Dead Deviant.



It's usually kind of quiet in the Chemotherapy wing, but let me tell you folks, you could hear that Chartreuse Cretin yelling, "Turn the drip up all the way!  Woo Hoo!!!!", clear down the hallway into the lobby.  Goat Grief.  How embarrassing is that?

Here's a close up.  See the needle taped to his arm?  And he's still smiling.  Oy.



So I suppose that little Unmitigated Muttonhead has a much better constitution than anyone thought possible because he didn't lose his hair and it didn't turn white.  Or any other shade, for that matter.  And we certainly can't say his color is any worse.  He didn't even get bloodshot eyes, though he probably would have liked that.  Some guys have all the luck.

Yes, my friends, the Little UnDead made it through quite nicely.   He maintains it's all just a matter of clean living and right thinking.  In his case we can honestly say that's just a crock of goat berries since there's certainly nothing clean about his living conditions (you should see his room).   And his thinking?  That's definitely more out in left field than right.  What.  Ever.

So there you have it.  I guess you could call his little sojourn a success.  He made it through anyway.

"Success is not a place at which one arrives but rather the spirit with which one undertakes and continues the journey."  - Alex Noble

There is that, now isn't there?

Stay tuned.  Unfortunately he isn't quite done yet.  But you can keep your eyes open.  The scariest part is over.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

The Continuing Adventures of the Little UnDead (Part 1)

Some of you may remember that every year at Halloween time, our diminutive friend, the Little UnDead, goes on an adventure.  After all, it is his favorite time of year.   So, here it is that time again.  In fact, if you look in my side bar, there are only a few days left!  My how time flies when you're not having fun, eh?

Now then, you may also recall that the  Petite and Putrid's  pilgrimages always have a bit of a scary bent.  (Probably no big surprise there.)  One year he spent time in all the, pardon the pun, haunts of Edward and Bella from the Twilight series.  In case you have actually forgotten, or tried hard to forget, you can refresh your sad little memory here, and here, and here, and here.  Of course then the Undersized and Deceased simply had to visit Maine and all things Stephen King.  That one wasn't actually in October, but he got the fever early that year.  In case you forgot about that one, you can either continue to suppress the memory, or you can refresh it here.  Then the following year, our Infinitesimal and Inanimate visited the various sights from the making of the film, Practical Magic.  I know.  It is an effort to keep up, but just in case you'd like to, you can review it here, and here.

So this year, the Imperceptible and Passed-Away decided to do one of the scariest things possible.  He decided to visit Cancer Land, and believe me, that is likely the scariest place he has gone to date.

And, so, without further ado (although I still think, in the case of the Insufficient and Inconsequential, it ought to be adieu )  I present to you The Little UnDead Does Cancer.

First of all, we see our Elfin and Extinct outside the Cancer Care Center.


What?  Did you miss him?  How about now?


Next he can be seen being tolera...uh...errr...checked in at the front desk.  (Do please excuse the bit of 'overexposure' in this photo.  All that green skin tends to cause an inordinate amount of reflection.  I'm just sayin' ...)


The next stop was the Radiation Room where our Shrimpy and Soulless was greeted by three able-bodied and intelligent Radiation Technologists.  As a matter of fact, the Goatmother says they are, without a doubt, the Worlds' Greatest Radiation Technologists.  Now don't they look to be the very essence of skill?  What more could the Goatmother, or anyone else for that matter, ask for?  Of course I'm certain they've never encountered a patient quite like our little Stubby and Stiff. 


Just as an aside, I want you to take note of the fantastic machine in the above photograph and in the next shot.  This is no ordinary radiation machine, my friends.  This is a Varian TrueBeam and represents a revolution in Radiotherapy technology.  It actually contains a linear accelerator, and has the ability to offer unprecedented speed and pinpoint accuracy.  And the last we knew, the only one of its kind in operation on the West Coast other than at Stanford University.  In Sequim, America?  Who knew???

Now, then, just get a load of those three faces.  Can't you just see the anticipation and glee.  For sure they are going to enjoy tortur...uh...errr...treating this guy.  Just look at how innocently they are accepting him into the fold.


So, here is our little Lilliputian, Lime and Liquidated all ready for his first treatment.


What?  You can't see him?  How about now?


That fancy machine can rotate clear around him or raise him up and down, backward or forward.  I mean to tell you, guys,  you could hear that little Grassy and Gone-To-Meet-His-Reward shouting, "More!  Give me more!  Weeeeeee!!!!!!", clear through those hugely thick, lead-lined walls.  What an idiot.  Oy.  Still, I guess with skin that color burning is the least of his worries, so why not enjoy the ride?


So there you have it.  I know that was all pretty darned scary.  I sure hope you don't have nightmares and find yourself having to eat a few Peanuts for consolation.  On the other hand, perhaps that isn't such a bad thing.  Our little Microscopic and Mortified sure seemed to enjoy it all.  Maybe it isn't all that scary.  Still, I suppose there is no accounting for taste.

Nonetheless, please stay tuned for Part 2 of the Little UnDead's continuing foray into Cancer  Land.  I'm not telling you what's next.  Besides, if I did you might not come back.  Just remember this.   If you experienced any degree of fear, please know to just ... "Don't be afraid of being scared. To be afraid is a sign of common sense. Only complete idiots are not afraid of anything.” ― Carlos Ruiz Zaf√≥n, The Angel's Game

Now just what does that tell you about our intrepid little Life-Challenged Lug?  Try not to think about it too hard.

Until next time - Marigold.  Oy and out!


Sunday, October 14, 2012

More Kindness

Sometimes life is pretty amazing.  Sometimes people are pretty amazing.  Goats are always amazing, but that's just a fact of life.  The Goatmother has had so many kindnesses extended to here during this whole 'Big C' routine, and yet they keep coming.  Yep, that's just flat out amazing.

I'm sure by now you are, yet again, saying, "Marigold, what the hay are you talking about now?"  Well, okay, I admit that I might occasionally go off on a few tangents, but that's just because my thought processes are so advanced it sometimes becomes difficult for my brain to keep them all properly aligned.  As my friend Monk used to say, "It's a blessing.  And a curse."

Anyway, the kindness I'm talking about is this:


"What is that, Marigold?", I'm sure you are asking?  Well, this, my friends, is a countdown!  A tea countdown, to be exact.  You see, there is a tea bag for every day the Goatmother has left of radiation treatments.  As each day passes, she can take down that day's tea and drink it...until no tea is left.  That will be cause for great celebration because then the Goatmother will be DONE with radiation!

The truly wonderful and remarkable thing about this is where it came from.  There is a quite lovely lady who has a blog here.  Now the astounding thing about it is  that this woman just recently lost her beloved husband, and yet she took the time to not only think about the Goatmother, but make her this beautiful gift!  Didn't I tell you that people are remarkable?

And lest you not realize the true extent of this magnanimous gesture, please observe this:


Originally, one of these was attached to each bag of tea.  However, the U.S. Postal Service, ever gentle as they are with our packages (cough... cough....) managed to dislodge them all by the time they arrived.  No matter.  They would have had to be taken off to be eaten anyway.  Just saved me time.  Besides, it's all good, remember?

So this lovely lady not only took the time to do something so nice for the Goatmother, she actually included a thought for moi.  Doubly remarkable, although I am awfully memorable.

Thank you, sweet Ginnie.  You are a brave and beautiful soul.  We can only add you to our list of those we will never adequately be able to repay.  Blessings to you!

"Life is mostly froth and bubble,
Two things stand like stone,
Kindness in another's trouble,
Courage in your own."
~Adam Lindsay Gordon


Disclaimer:  You may notice that there are many bags of tea in the picture above.  This would be due to the fact that we are SO behind around here!  My apologies to Ginnie for taking so long to make this post.  And my apologies to the Goatmother because she has, in fact, ONLY 10 bags of tea left!!!!!  Woo Hoo!!!!  (Sorry.  I got a bit carried away.)

Sunday, October 7, 2012

World's Greatest Radiation Oncology Nurse


Well, now.   It has been quite some time since we have shown you any pictures.  It's about time.  That's all I have to say on that subject. 

So, then, this is the World's Greatest Radiation Oncology nurse.  Doesn't she have a beautiful smile?  And she's funny, too.  That and expertise all rolled into one nice package.  Who could ask for more?  Unless, of course, Peanuts were to be involved.  Then mostly certainly we would ask for more.  I'm just sayin'...

That Goatmother is one lucky woman to have such a genuinely nice lady taking care of her.  And, by the way, she used to have Alpacas (the nurse, not the Goatmother. Because, let's face it, then she would have to be called the Alpacamother and we'd probably have to write a whole new blog.).  You know, Alpacas.  Those guys that are kind of half way between a llama and a goat?  That gives the nice nurse some marks in my book since Alpacas are kind of like goats.  Of course she would have had more marks if they had actually been goats, but I wouldn't, after all, want to be judgemental. 

Anyway, yes, the World's Greatest Radiation Oncology nurse is indeed a nice person.  How do we know that?  "Fake people are only nice when it's convenient for them.  Genuinely nice people go out of their way to help others." - Unknown. 

Yep.  Nice.