My Double Lung Transplant

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

New Years Resolutions for 2008/2009


2) Have as much fun as possible

3) Love every minute of every day

4) Find someone (and not a missing person!)

5) Treat myself better once I'm healthy.

6) Get my G!

So that's about it folks for 2008. Tonight I am having a quiet night with les girlies, consisting of making pizza, watching movies in our jammies, drinks, and a lot of laughter and craziness! We're all spending the night and yes the wretched oxygen is coming with me. How scandalizing, I know.

I truely have to say that although 2008 had a lot of shitty moments, it wasn't all a lost cause. It allowed me to really see who my true friends are. Jenna, Chantel, Krystal, Katey, i would not be here without you special special people. You accept me for who I am and you love me regardless. I love you all very much and I can't wait for when we are able to be truely crazy and travel the world together!

Go Team Awkward Go!

To my family - although you can annoy the shit out of me I love you all very much. Know that I love you all very much and the support you give me means more than you will ever know. If i had a million dollars I would disperse it amongst you guys but since I don''s the thought that counts, eh?

To everyone else, I hope you all have a safe and happy New Years. Your support and comments mean to the world and I truely love to get them!

I will blog tomorrow, but until then, have a wonderful day and I will see you next year!

Lets see what 2009 brings!


So i sauntered over to Merv's site and saw that he finally has the pics up from the transplant Christmas party. He got one of me wearing oxygen. And I'll be brave and post it.

So there it is. I hope i don't look too much like a sponsor child.

Sunday, December 28, 2008



I sit here, with a raging headache that makes it feel like my head will fall off. My head feels like a bobbing balloon and I get waves of dizziness. It's just like Christmas day where I was dizzy for the whole entire day for some mysterious reason.

It probably means i should wear my O2 more often (like all day).

I feel like i've blogged twice in one day but I technically havent. I blogged late lastnight/early this morning but whatever.

I was talking with another transplant person today - or rather, the support person. They said their spouse has a huge pain issue as well, and I'm beginning to think it's not just me who's been spontaneously blessed with crippling lung pain. Any transplantee's who read this blog, tell me, did you ever have such a huge issue with pain as I do? I know it's all situational and completely individual but I'd still like to know.

Tomorrow I will reach my 8 month mark of being listed. I have almost been listed double the time I was when I got my call back in September. Crazy eh? I don't really know what to think - if anything should even be thought of it. For the most part I don't think of it or dwell on it which I think is imperitive. If it's all I thought of I would most likely sit beside the phone and jump every time it rang.

Tomorrow I am going to make an appt to get my hair done. That will pass the time nicely and rob me of some more money that I know I shouldn't spend. At least I have a gift card for the place I go to so that helps nicely.

Other than that I'm reading a new book, The Sylph. When I bought it yesterday i needed help looking for it and made the mistake of asking the Chapters worker if he "had The Syph", (unintentially omitting the 'l' like only I would do.)

It was completely redolent of the time when I couldn't find A Breathe of Snow and Ashes and I screamed when the Chapters worker found it for me.

They probably think I am insane.

What does it feel like?

As i sit and watch that video for the thousandth time I sit here and shake my head and wonder:

"What does it feel like...? My god, what does it feel like?"

I watch those lungs take a deep breath and can only imagine how amazing it feels.

As i approach my 8 months waiting mark on the 29th(don't know why i thought it was yesterday?) I can only hope and pray that I experience this very sensation SOON!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

No willpower= FAIL

I offically hate myself.

I officially have no willpower, no conscious when it comes to stopping myself from resisting the relentless impulse that seeps through my horrible soul and sends me straight to Chapters.

Yup. Yet again (though unintentionally) I found myself at Chapters today. I accidentally clicked on a link for a movie promo called The Duchess lastnight. And i looked through the website and saw a link that lead the an author by the name of Amanda Foreman who wrote the book. So there I went. And there I got sucked in to not one but two more potential books.

Somehow I found myself at Chapters today. And somehow - by some damn horrible supernatural act - they had both books. And I got them both knowing full well that I don't need them at all. My rationale for myself was that I'd read the one and would most likely want to know the real story, so I may as well get the autobiography too.


$43 that should have be saved later, and I offically FAILED.

Though I felt my handicapped parking today was greatly justified since I feel terrible today. And i have no make up on, huge sweatpants, and generally look like I crawled out of a well or massive house fire. And of course when i was waiting in the line of 4000 people I saw someone I went to high school with. And of course I ignored them, as they ignored me, though I'm pretty sure we both knew the other was there. That's the way it works. You get in and you get the hell out, and you don't stop and take the time to acknowlege humanity.

Gah. I stress however that I am beginning to learn my lesson. Buyers remorse, eh? I am staying the hell away. I am hiding my Chapters gift card and never driving by the mall again. I have 16 brand new books that must be read.

Yes you read that right. 16. Jenna has officially banned me from ever entering a bookstore again.

3 strikes and I am officially out.

3 strikes and I officially FAIL.

In other news, I have been listed for 8 months today. 8 months! WOW. Oh well. At least I have 16 books to keep me occupied, and horrible lungs to prevent me from ever stepping foot inside a public bookstore again.

I hope that's enough.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Christmas Quote 2008

*at the dinner table, after supper, waiting for Christmas Pudding*

Sister: Would you like something to drink, Nana?

Nana stares: *silence*

Papa *taps Nana on the shoulder*: She wants to know if you would like anything to drink?

Nana: *silence*

Me, shouting: Would you like a shot 'a gin, Nana?

Nana: Eh? Oh...*laughs* Uh huh...?

*Nana has no idea what's going on*

Oh Nana, you bring out the best in everyone lol. You are the very best when you don't hear what we say:)

What makes it all better is that i discovered that my Papa still carries his 'indoor' shoes around in a Spiderman lunch bag.

Oh nana and papa, i would be lost without you guys:)

Merry Christmas AGAIN!


I hope everyone had a lovely, lovely Christmas! I myself had a fab time with my family, and I cannot beleive the day is over! I admit I am a little sad. But there's still New Years so yay!

I got lots of lovely things and I couldn't be more thankful and grateful! I hope that you all had a lovely Christmas and that it was filled with happiness and joy, and that at the moments when your family made you go crazy and tempted you to scream like a demon child, that you found some refuge and let it slide!

Tomorrow/today is Boxing Day. There is no Boxing Day in the states, but there is in the UK and and S. Africa ( i think? Alice?) and Australia. I've already got my Chapters list created and I don't think i will be able to sleep tonight. With my luck, they won't have the 2 books i really really want, which means I will have to order them but that's exciting b/c then THEY WILL COME IN THE MAIL AND YAY! True, I did get 3 books for Christmas, and it's also true that I have about 15 brand new books that I havent read yet b/c my list just keeps on growing...but I can't help it. I'm a book whore.

Anyways I have to run, I'm watching the Tudors (season 2!) and Henry Cavill is on-screen without a shirt on and I don't have a pause button.


Wednesday, December 24, 2008


Wishing all you lovely readers a very Merry Christmas, a Happy Hannukah, Kwanza, and whatever else holiday I have forgotten. I hope your holidays are filled with love, laughter, and most importantly, the saftey and sancity that being with your loved ones provides!

So laugh lots, be merry, and drink up!


Tuesday, December 23, 2008


So this is Christmas
And what have we done?
Another storm over

And a new one's just begun...

Yeah you read that right, "storm". We're getting our 3rd storm since Friday and it's a total bitch. I just had the misfortune of being out in it, and of getting stuck going up a hill on my way to Krystal's place. I tried my hardest, I applied the gas as much as i could, and i could hear my tires dying, could smell the fumes come through my windows, and yet my car wouldn't move.

We were stuck in the middle of a bloody hill. A huge fucking steep hill.

I couldn't turn my tires to do a 3 point turn. Nothing. No way out. No way out but down. So i put my car in reverse and went down the hill backwards.

And alas I am home, and in one peice, but damned if i'll go back out in this shit again! I was at Jenna's picking up something and was only in her house for 5 minutes, when I came out and my entire back window was a sheet of ice.


And tomorrow of course it is going to rain! Yeah...fucking great.

Anywho, I had another dream that I got my tx. I'm not sure if i dreamt it last night or the night before. Is that bizarre? I wanted to blog about it yesterday, and then i dreamt about my dream last night, and now I can't really remember the exact details of the whole thing except that it was a vastly different tx dream than from what i've usually had.

In this one i got the call and made it to the hosp. But i got further than that, i got prepped and went into the OR and then woke up, and i remember taking a deep breath in and marveling at how effortless it was and how great it felt, and how it seemed to go on and on forever.

I felt well.

I felt healthy.


Needless to say i woke and felt very happy and very satisfied, but this is where it gets fuzzy. I seemed to have dreamt about doing things too soon for the docs or something, like being active and dancing and so forth. Oh well. I TOOK A DEEP BREATH AND IT FELT GREAT AND THAT IS ALL THAT MATTERS SO FUCK EVERYTHING AND EVERYONE ELSE!

*screams from the top of the world*

Now that that's over, that's really all I have to say. Not sure if i will blog tomorrow (to escape the madness) and if not, MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL AND TO ALL A GOOD NIGHT! I hope everyone has a fantastic Christmas and that you eat lots, gossip lots, get naughty pictures and have an overall fantastic time!


Monday, December 22, 2008

Michael Jackson needs a lung transplant...

...Any givers?


It's one thing to try to keep it private; it's another thing to stroll around in your jammies in a wheelchair with a blanket on your head.

That's when it becomes a little more difficult to remain private and conspicious.


Sunday, December 21, 2008

Welcome, Winter

Current Weather Updated: Sunday, December 21, 2008, 23:00 EST

Current temperature:-15°C
Feels like: -27 °C
Wind: SW 39km/h


Current temperature: - holy crap I cannot feel my genitals*C
Blowing snow violently
Feels like: -Death*C
Wind: Coming from everywhere at 1 000 000km/h's just a little bit cold outside...

Saturday, December 20, 2008


LUNG IN A BOX IS HERE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Fucken eh!

I went to the presentation for this at the end of August. The first presentation when they told all of the lung transplant patients about this procedure. The first phase was done in September, and now the second phase is being done! I have signed up for this and really hope that my call comes soon and i get to use to procedure.

I can proudly say that i know the docs in the vid, that i recognize the guy who got done, and i can proudly shout as loud as I possibly can that THIS WAS PIONEERED BY CANADIAN DOCTORS. Yes I am proud. Yes, I am taking bragging rights. And yes, I will push anyone down if they try to contradict me. I am just too damn excited about the whole thing that I feel like i have to break something!!!

Voila, Lung in a box:

(a commerial for The Nutcracker comes up first, and then it will play).


Friday, December 19, 2008

Flash Virgin

Welp, they did not lie when they called this snowstorm "Snowmageddon". It definately sucks. And it's definately awesome at the same time. And it definately looks like the end of the world outside.

I left Jenna's last night after our Pizza night with the girlies. I had horrible back pain again, and it just kept getting worse. By midnight i felt paralyzed, or like i had fallen into a cement mixer and been torn up. I took 1 tylenol 2 at midnight and it did nothing for me except get stuck in my throat and taste awful. I woke up at 5am and felt worse. I hoped the snowstorm was raging so that i wouldn't have to go to rehab.

Alas, I woke up at 7 am and nothing. Not a snowflake, not a wind, not a nuffin. I had to go. Fuck. Just as i was leaving it started up, and it didn't start up slowly, it just came raging in from the hell it came from and it was like immediate white out conditions.

As i made it into the city where rehab is, i turned to take the bridge that leads to the hosp. YOU COULDN'T EVEN SEE THE HOSP (which looks like an asylum, lets be honest). It had all but diappeared in the wall of snowstorm. But i had ulterior motives to this trip: i really wanted to see the resp. doc to find out what was wrong with me. I woke up today and i couldn't sit up. I can't arch my back or straighten up at all. I'm in a perminant slouching position like a grumpy old man. The only thing that would top this was if i was bald and in a wheelchair. But i'm not.

I told Rhonda that i wasn't feeling well so she paged for Lori to come see me. I was squandered to the back corner and the curtain was drawn to hide me from the world. Lori soon came and as soon as i started telling her what was wrong with me, I started to cry b/c the pain was so bad. She was so kind and sweet that it made me cry more, and she touched my back and said it was definately pleurisy.

The pleurisy this time is different from the last time, wherein the last time i swore i had been mysteriously shot by a musket in the dead of night, and this time i feel like i have been squeezed and shoved into a machine that has torn up all my back muscles. Except the pain is in my ENTIRE back and it ends at the bottom of my ribs. It's also at the top part of my arms (that line up with the top lobes of your lungs) and it's up the back of my neck and the side of it, and then in both front upper lobes.

I walk like i have a stick up my ass. I can't bend over and my thighs are sore b/c i can't stand up straight. It really is shitty, but i'm glad i have it confirmed that i am once again struck by the almighty hand of pleurisy.

So Lori called my respirologist and told her i was plagued again, and said i was taking Tylenol 2 (i took 2 when i got home and they are working!) I was told to start Cipro and will call that tomorrow. I don't want to drive in this shit anymore. My respirologist said that if it gets worse I have to get admitted into the hosp.YIKES! When all was said and done, i was on my merry way and back out into the winter wonderland, where i had to clean my car again.

The snow is falling at such a rate and is blowing so hard that I had to pull over 3 times to brush off my back window and remove the ice that formed under my wipers. I repeatedly saw people park at red lights, get out, and wipes their cars off b/c the snow was accumulating so fast. I fishtaled at 2 intersections (and didn't freak out or cry, yay!) and I drove all the way home at 50km/h. And no i don't have snow tires, my dad claims they are 'all season' tires, aka, they've been on the fucken car for the last 16 years.The wind bites it's so cold, but what can you do? My papa called and was shocked to hear that i had gone to rehab, and was shocked to hear my sister had gone to work in another city. He was so shocked that he exclaimed, in typical Papa fashion, "I don't know why people don't just stay the hell inside". He then informed me that he would sit by the phone and worry until I called him letting him know my sister had made it safely home.

And to make it more exciting, when I was crossing a bridge to get home, i flashed someone to let them know to cross it first! I've never flashed anyone before and it was tres exciting! WEEEEEEEE!

So that ends it for this long wintery painful entry. Before I go I must add that as I dropped Krystal off at her place last night, I saw a bunny!!!!!!!!! I havent seen one in a long time and was shocked to see one in December. It was even more special seeing as Owen had been born the day before. It was as if K was letting us know that she's still here and knows what's going on, and just saying, "i'm still here". :)

And i'm glad i could scroll my window down fast enough, stick part of my hand out, and scream "BUNNY!!!!!!!!!!!!" at Krystal without scaring it off!!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Cleaning this place up..

God there's so much crap in this place that I can barely see through it all. I got rid of some pics, changed the archive thingy, added a pic behind the title (does that look stupid? can you even read the title and my slogan?) and am generally a little more happy with the way this place looks.

I have been contemplating changing the layout/template/whatever the hell it is from black to something else. But that would be a huge overhaul on my part and lets not lie to ourselves, I'm a lazy human being and technology fills me with rage, and the thought that I would change over my blog template and potentially lose all my bloggy goodness scares the absolute shite out of me, so for now, we're sticking with the basics: colour changes, a picture here and there, and that's about it. It's a blog for Christ's sake, not an essay or a thesis or some special gov't document, and although I'm jealous and envious that Meghann went and changed her format I am too afraid to do it myself. So Meghann and her new blog templateness can just go to hell.


A year ago today was the first day of my transplant evaluation. HOLY CRAP. A thought struck me while I was lazing on the couch, that what if I don't get the call soon and they need to re-evaluate me? I WOULD SHIT. And I wouldn't shit out shit, and I wouldn't shit a brick either, I'd shit a small elf from my shock and melt into the floor. The worst memory of the eval is a tie for two tests: the lung perfusion where I was convinced I was going to die, and the one where they take a pic of your heart and you peddle on this bike, and when i did it, my hospital gown came undone and my boob popped out and i couldn't move to change it so i peddled on my back along with Boob Solo and it was at the moment that I wished nothing more for the giant magnet machine to suddenly detach from the ceiling and land on me. But it didn't happen and alas I am still here. And i'm happy. Boob exposure notwithstanding.

Oh yeah, the horrible arterial blood gas that rendered me crippled in the left arm for a couple of days is up there too. So that's 3. God, feeling like you've been punched in the ulna sucks.

Like a dark cloud and its ability to loom in the background for everyone, Pleurisy is waiting behind my back again. I can feel it there....i have that dull pain again that gets worse if i walk or do something (like cleaning my room which i just did. Gah the pain!) I woke up and felt like i had been crushed by the hands of a giant around the ribs. I took 2 advils, then realized what the pain was, and thought i probably could've taken a motrin instead but what can you do? Nuffin muffin.

Um what else? Apparently there's some giant snowstorm coming tonight/tomorrow with up to 20 cm of snow and winds up to 70 km. They called it "Snomageddon" on the news. I'm a fan of the snowstorms myself, since i can't shovel and i can stay inside and watch people do it instead. And since i'm morbid I highly enjoy wind and destruction. It's supposed to start tonight and I have rehab tomorrow so we'll see if i'm able to go. Tonight is also a pizza night with the girlies at Jenna's so I hope that's fun. I'll bring my pleurisy along and all should be merry.

That's about it really. I can't beleive it's almost 4 o'clock. When did that happen?

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Here he is!

Look at this precious creature! Is he not the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow??

Aaaaaaaand b/c I'm a classy lady, here's the spatula that i ate a peice out of:

Yup. I'm a winner.

Welcome to the world...

Little Owen William Edward!

My friend Jess, who i was a bridesmaid for this past summer, finally had Owen! She was due last friday, and never popped. It didn't matter what she did, or what she took, she wouldn't go into labour, and if she hadn't gone into labour by the end of this week, she was going to be induced.

Well finally, she had him! I am so excited! He's got brown hair and dimples and I'm sure he's absolutely perfect! Like my new toothbrush and my scarf, I'm telling everyone who's willing to listen. I don't care if you're a dog or a cat or an elf, if you have ears i'm going to tell you. I don't care if you don't speak English either: you're being informed and you can just shut the hell up about it. I am going to visit around 6 tonight and may post a pic of this precious bundle of Christmas joy!

I'm sticking to my promise to bring Jess a bag of Ketchup chips and pepsi, and I don't think i'll be allowed to bring in a bottle of Jack Daniel's like I promised.

That may have to wait....

Until then, I'M AN AUNT AGAIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

In my excitement over baby Owen's arrival, I made some peanut butter rice krispie squares (with chocolate drizzled over top!). Upon eating some mix off the spoon, I noticed soon after that there was a mark on the top of the spoon with a bite in the shape of teeth.

I ate some spatula:(

I cannot frigging beleive it.


I give up.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Merry Christmas from the dentist

I got a call this morning from the dentist informing me that I was due for an appt, and that they just so happened to have an opening today at 1:10 pm. Perfect. I had a Christmas party to attend that I really didn't want to go to, and this was the best excuse ever - b/c it's not an excuse it's real. WEEEEEEE!

I get to the dentist office and I wait. I overhear the secretary telling a patient who she was on the phone with that the next available appt wasn't until Jan 23 of '09. I lucked in! (or is it out? this always confuses me). So i get back there and it's all talk, and the one dentist who's not a dentist (the ones who clean your teeth) tells me she's sad to see that I still have my pager. I tell her hopefully soon i won't need it anymore, and that the next time they see me I'll be breathing with new lungs!

So i got my dental x-rays, then cleaning, then saw the dentist who went over everything with me. EVERYTHING LOOKS GREAT! WEEEEEEE! He says that my teeth look great, that I do have a wisdom tooth just below the gum but that it won't likely break through if it hasn't already come in. I said i can feel it if i touch it, but just assumed that it was an extension of my molar. I also stressed that i'm glad that it's a tooth and not a twin that never formed. How horrible would that be?

They let me go at this morbid thought, gave me the papers to mail to insurance (and i was thrilled to see that i'm no longer listed at male and named Brian!) and I merely skipped/coughed my way to my parking spot as fast as I could muster, mailed a card to Grant, and came home to brag to everyone who would listen to me about how amazing my appt was and how special I am.

And i scored a sweet toothbrush too, which is great b/c the other night I was thinking that I needed a new one, and was wondering when I'd go to the dentist so I could get a free one. Now i've got one! YAY!

Sunday night was the 2nd annual Booze and Bake 2008 with my friends! A tradition that started last year, where all us girlies get together to bake and drink and exchange gifts. I truely have the bestest friends in the world. I had such a blast and I love these girls so much that I wouldn't be able to function without them. I gave everyone cups with chocolates in them and pics of us, and I got a wicked amazing scarf from Chantel. A scarf she knit and I fucking love it. I love it so much i wear it everywhere, and I tell everyone how much I love it and that it was made for me and that they possibly can't have anything better than this b/c it's mine! Then I got 2 amazing books - one on the histories worst diseases from Katey (the one i blogged about! then deleted coz i thought it was stupid) and a book on Marie Antoinette from Krystal, and a beautiful picture and frame from Jenna!

I love you ladies dearly! You are my world!

So all things considering, I am a pretty blessed person to have such amazing people in my life, and the extra vote of confidence coming from the dental aspect of my life is greatly appreciated as well. Overall, today has been great!

Next step: convincing my dad to get some firewood so we can use the fire place! Hope everyone's had a great day!:)

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Transplant Journey

I initially came across this video last year at work, and up until now, I havent been able to find it.

While searching the web I went to Merv's site (, and was browsing his links. I came across the link Transplant Journey and knew instantly that i had found the site that held this precious video.

It isn't a single video anymore but rather, pictures with audio to them, that chronicles what it's like to wait for an organ, getting the call, the surgery, and also it films a mothers heartwrenching decision to take her son off life support and donate her son's organs. It is profound, and will stay with you for a very long time.

If anything, it gives people a better understanding of what organ donation entails. It doesn't begin when you get the call; it begins when you find out that need a transplant to go on with life.

If you have time, I encourage everyone to check out the link: If you click on the pictures the audio sometimes will come up. You can also read the stories.


Saturday, December 13, 2008

Winter jealousy, YAY!


For the most part I hate winter. I hate the coldness of it, I hate the tremendous snowiness of it (sometimes) i hate falling on ice, I hate having to warm up my car, and I hate that it just plain feels like it's hear longer than it actually is. And I hate that i get so out of breathe putting on my coat, boots and mitts!

Now, being Canadian, you'd think I wouldn't feel so stronly against such a season, since you know, we live in Igloos, don't have electricity, have penguins as pets, have different electrical outlets (if we even have them), and wear parkas and so forth, but the fact is, I do. And i've discovered that I feel this way b/c I'm jealous.



I realized that that's exactly what it is today, as I watched my sister struggle into a pair of snowboarding pants, b/c her and her bf are going snowboarding. Usually, I never let this stuff bother me, b/c i'm not athletic, and i hate being in the cold and stuff, but as I left my sister on the floor to fend for herself (as i went to McDonalds), I got a whiff of the cold air and saw the snowflakes falling outside of the garage, and was suddenly taken back...

You know how they say that certain scents, images, and feelings can trigger memories? Well that moment did. Suddenly, I had a very vivid memory of my sister and cousins and I on my nana and papa's farm as kids, in our snowsuits, fucking around on the snowmobile, and going tobogganning down the hill on the lane. And what i remembered the most was that i wasn't held back, my lungs didn't affect me the way they do now. Then, i could run and be an ass in the snow, and i didn't care about how cold it was b/c i could enjoy it.

Now, I can't go snowboarding or anything b/c god, i'd fucken die getting the outfit on for one. But im just so used to feeling this way - this, 'i can't' - that I never let it bother me. But today, it did. Suddenly, i wanted to go snowboarding, or just do something to enjoy the winter.

I became a jealous bitch.

And you know what? I'm glad of it, b/c it feels like the option and capacity of being able to do that stuff is coming soon! Hopefully next winter i will be able to do that stuff. Hell, hopefully at some point this winter i WILL be able to do it! And that excites me. And maybe i'll stop hating the winter so much!

So yay!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Biting the hand that smites you

Lastnight when I was at Jenna's, standing in her kitchen debating what sort of tea to have, and trying desperately hard not to ruin it (like the time i ruined it at Katey's) i began to have chest pains. Not heart attack chest pains, but pleurisy chest pains.

Admittedly, I had been forwarned. I got to her place and immediately complained of feeling like my ribs had been crushed by a giant, like some big hand grasped itself around my ribs, squeezed, and crushed me. And earlier in the day i got feelings and jolts of pain but that's so commonplace I just thought nothing of it.

Anywho, stop getting me offtrack. So we were in her kitchen when the pain began to manifest itself in the front of my chest - smack in the middle - spread evenly over the top lobes of my lungs. It feels like an approaching storm, a big dark cloud that you anticipate coming, that you can see on the horizon, and it gets closer and closer and darker and darker and it spreads out. Sometimes it's not as bad as it looked from far away, and sometimes it is.

My first thought wasn't, "Oh crap, pleurisy again." My first thought was actually, "Yay! Pleurisy! If it's bad enough i can get out of rehab tomorrow and just get my IV instead in the morning and my day will be done a lot sooner!"

I swear to god. This is just another testiment to the fact that I am an innately horrible person. To wish pleurisy on myself to get out of rehab again? Can I not remember the fact that in July I was rendered imfuckingmobile for 13 days b/c of it?

So we sat there on Jenna's couch and as the minutes went by the pain just got worse, as predicted. With pleurisy, you don't just feel the pain when you move. It's always there - when you sit, when you walk, when you sleep, when you lay down, when you shit, when you fart, when you blow your nose, ect - it's always there. It just kept growing, that hollow, sore, sick feeling.

So i left, and the pain was getting worse. I got home and went to bed, and at 2am the pain was so bad that i had to take a Tylenol 2. I didn't want to. I wanted to resist b/c i knew i'd wake up and the pain would be gone and i'd have to do rehab when i don't have the energy to do it.

Of course it worked. Of course i woke up with no pain - this is Tylenol 2 people - it could probably cure evil if it wanted to. Under normal circumstances, i would have skipped around the room and screamed with joy, but instead my thought was, "FUCK. I have to go to rehab."

Blah blah blah, long story short, I went to rehab, i got my IV, I was compliant and I still have pleurisy pains. Lets all join hands and sing Kumbiyah if we must.

I guess the lesson to be learned is that you may get what you wished for, but wishes aren't stupid; they will fuck you up.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

This is how we do it

Today was TGH's rehab Christmas party. It was great and there were lots and lots of people there - doctors, surgeons physio people,pre-tx, post-tx - and they were all in their festive sweaters, or wearing red, generally being merry and spreading Christmas cheer.

I had the opportunity to meet some great people, and the following short story is of what could have been a spectacular moment, and I had to be weird about it. This is how i ruined it:

We were getting ready to leave, and I made my way up to the food table like a sneak thief. I was picking, spreading, and eating like a foraging monkey, when Merv came up and wanted to introduce me to some people. I looked around and grabbed a block of shortbread, and awkwardly made my way to the group of very tall people. They all seemed really eager to talk to me, which was nice, but unfortunately my ride was holding the door open, waiting for me...

Merv: Your name is...?
Me: Bree.
Merv: Bree, these people work with Trillium Gift of Life. They are the ones who are out there right now looking for lungs for you, and they are the ones who call you when those lungs are found.
Me: Oh yeah? Cool *thumbs up* You guys do a great job!

*silence* look great...
Me: *silence* Um....I have to go now...

I promptly left with my wall of shortbread, waved goodbye b/c a hand action felt appropriate, and generally made the situation a lot more awkward than was strictly necessary.

This ruined moment has been brought to you by me.

Before all of this happened, I spent some of the party time (since i had to be at rehab for 10:30 and the party started at 10 and went till 1pm) chatting with people, and generally distancing myself from any opportunity to do something weird or make people feel uncomfortable like the example above. For the most part, I sat on a chair and people watched, and that was all.

That's about it really. I may update more later when my brain begins to re-function.

Sunday, December 7, 2008


I lost my pager.


I didn't notice until after supper, when i went to look for it. No where to be found. Not in my room, in the bathroom, in the kitchen, on the couch, on the counter, in the bathroom, im my purse, or in the car.

No where.


All of us looked high and low. My parents - being parents - made me feel bad about it, and irresponsible b/c i attach it to my purse strap. My mum quizzed me about where i last remember seeing it. I wanted to cry. I wanted to scream. I wanted to rip someone's head off. My dad paged it to see if it was somewhere hidden in the house. It wasn't.

So off to the grocery store my angry dad and I went (it was the last place i had been with my mum when we had gone out earlier). We went to the spot we parked (yay handicapped spot!) and looked around in -22*C weather. It wasn't there, but Zehrs was still open so we popped inside and went to customer service.

No one was working. Of course. It was 8:20 and they closed at 8:00.

And then i saw it.
By itself. On the lotto table alone, like a shining peice of black dirty gold. My frazzled pager, who has been dropped, stepped on, smashed, and now lost, a little warrior of time, an old faithful, alive and well in Zehrs.

I was so relieved. I snuck behind the counter and got it, told the lady working cash that it was mine and that i had lost it, and we went home, hand in hand, pager and I, along with a very angry Dad.

I feel better that i've found it, but my dad is still pretty angry that I lost it and had no idea.

And I'm pretty sure he wants to commit infantide now.

The Flip Side to Lung Disease

As always, i was inspired to write this blog while getting ready to step into the shower.

The other day I heard on the radio that people shouldn't worry about gaining weight over the Christmas holidays b/c in actuality, you only gain 1.5 lbs. As i stared at my pale self in the mirror, I reflected on all the crap I've eaten this past week, and decided to step on the scale and see if I could defy the world and what it tells you about eating high caloric stuff.

94 lbs.

HA! Eat it, health nutritionists people! Not a pound, not a roll, not a bulge, not a jiggle. It was then as I realized that I had lung disease to thank for this condition! And it inspired me to blog about the flip side of lung disease and what it has taught me.

1) Lung disease and waiting for transplant has given me a lot of Me Time Bree time. I spend a lot of time with myself - in fact, every waking hour - and I've learned that I can entertain myself greatly, but it's also allowed me to read to an excessively sick amount and as a result, my book collection has grown substantially. One thing university robs you of is the freedom to read your own material of choice, when you want, for how long you want, and if you don't really understand it at some parts, no big deal, b/c you're not going to be quizzed on it at any time in the forseeable future.

I read like a whore. You have no idea. Every waking minute, my nose is buried in a book. I cannot put them down. I am like a sponge. I absolutely love being taken away and so wrapped up in a story that you want to physically bite somone's hand off when they try to touch what you're reading to find out what it is. I love falling in love with someone's story (OUTLANDER) and I love reading about the past (hello Tudor history!). I will mourn the time when I am thrown back into the real world and forced to function like a normal human being. I will be breathing and I will be whole..I won't have time to go off to Never Never Land and live through someone else. I cannot praise books enough b/c they are my essence. If i could not read, I would die. My brain would melt and I would seize to exist.

2) I bake a lot. I've always baked, but now I bake about twice a week, and I'm baking things that I never had to time to bake before. I am expanding my culinary skills and it's marvelous. And I'm eating a lot more too.

3) As stated in point one, lung disease really is just a giant excuse to be lazy. I don't mean it in a bad way, but when you don't have any energy to do squat, you don't really need to justify it. So for now, waiting for transplant is my time to be lazy without excuses and without feeling guilty. I cherish my laziness and my spot on the couch. And i will never forget the long hours i spend on it reading. Like a whore.

4) Being listed for transplant I have met a lot of people like me. A lot of young people specifically. When I got diagnosed I truely beleived I was the only young person who had a lung disease to the extent that I did, and I was therefore completely alone and no one would ever understand me. I would debate what I would tell people, b/c people always comment when they hear you cough. You can only pull the "i'm sick" excuse for so long. After a year, you're not fucking sick anymore, there's something horribly wrong with you! Having a lung disease is one thing, but then when you have a whole other disease on top of it, you have to flip a coin and choose which one you'll tell people about, and which one you'll hide. Now that i've met young people with lung issues and other conditions, I have opened up and seen that I am not alone and that it's ok to be like this. I have met a lot of great sickies whom i love dearly. Even if we can no longer be within 3 feet of eachother:(

5) You learn who your real friends are, the ones who are there for you, who listen to you drone on and on for hours about how shitty you feel, how congested you are, how much phelgm you cough up and how you had to leave their house b/c you had to poo!! (ok maybe I went a little too far) The fact is, they're not grossed out by the fact that you sound like you've got TB or pneumonia. They know you can't help it, yo, and they love you muchly b/c of who you are, and you love them muchly for loving you!

6) Sympathy/Compassion? Not that I ever had any to begin with, b/c in all honesty, I don't. Has my sympathy/compassion for other people grown? Not really. I can't be bothered with normal people who complain about their minor health crap in general. There are exceptions (like my dearies!). My compassion for fellow sick people has a foundation. I will say that. I'm not completely heartless, I do care and I do feel sorry for people, but i'm not going to shower them with sympathy since it won't get anybody anywhere. I don't hand sympathy out like candy. You have to earn it. When you're ill to the extent that the people I have seen are, you learn that they just want to be seen and treated just like everyone else, not some damn sick case!

7) And last but not least (saving the best for last!), the never-happy medium, the always-at-war and the issue-that-will-always-be *sound trumpets* MY SKINNINESS! *cheer*. Sometimes I hate it, sometimes I love it. Some days i feel too thin, the next day my arms are too fat and I look like a fat mole stuffed into a pair of jeans (or so i feel). I know that I'm not. Me, who has eaten 3 out of the 4 dozen gingerbread people I made on Tues; me, who has consumed more chocolate turtles, more cans of coke, more macaroni and cheese than anyone i know...and not an ounce. And i love it. And by god if this changes post transplant I will be really pissed off! But, it may teach me that i need to treat my body like a temple, to eat healthy (i had an apple yesterday, i'm starting) and to not eat crap to the extent that I do. But i will not lie, I will enjoy it for as long as I have it. And i hope that I am always like this. But like i said, there is never a happy medium so we will see!

So that's it. It doesn't matter what I say at all about lung disease, there is no happy medium anywhere. If lung disease were a mental illness, we'd all be bi-polar!

Friday, December 5, 2008

And the sun rises over Southwestern Ontario...

This is the pic that I took outside my bedroom window this morning, just as I left for rehab. The sun was rising at 7:45am and I couldn't help but gawk at the sunrise and marvel at the pretty colour that it gave off. It was simply too amazing to not get a picture of, and alas, here it is!
If you look closely, you will see the snowcovered roofs, but don't be fooled by the warm looking sun, it was a frigid -6 this morning with a windchill of -15, enough to make anyone contemplate stepping outside at such an ungodly hour. When it's this cold, the sun heats nothing up!
I didn't want to go to rehab today, but I soldiered it up and went. I spent the day reading, sleeping, being generally lazy, and also eating way too much Christmas food. I think i'm rotting on the inside I've eaten so much crap. No lie. I think my digestive system has gone on strike and my guts on a major backlodge b/c i've got this perminant bulge at the front that forms into 2 rolls when I sit down. I'm used to one roll, that can generally be concealed in the folds of my sweatpants, but today I just felt like a regular fatty and I am going to be honest, I don't like it. Even wearing sweatpants I just feel I really need to stop eating Turtles, Gingerbread people, and pizza, 'and all that jazz'.
I may likely be the only person on the face of the earth to rot from the inside out over the Christmas holiday. Just maybe!
Other than that I'm here. Not doing much. Feeling pretty useless, and eating my feelings b/c it makes me feel productive.
That's about it. I just finished wrapping my sister's Christmas present, and I'm pretty sure it looks like something that was sent and damaged in the mail.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Blog Award Nom!

It's about fucking time!!!

Anyways, for months and months I have seen my blog friends be nominated for blog awards, and I got the feeling that I'd have to put myself out there like a whore to get noticed, but apparently not anymore thanks to AMY! ( There are rules to this dealio and this is how it works:

1. post the award on your blog
2. link me for giving it to you
3. link the originating post nominating you
4. pass the award on to 5 more people
5. post the rules

My noms (I don't know how to hyperlink so bare with me):
Amy has been a true friend since the moment I met her, and she shares her own stores of phelgm and poo with me as well. I love you!

When I initially met Alice on facebook, I beleived she was stalking me, and instead of running, blocking, avoiding - like any sane human would do - I opened up and found a near and dear friend(even though she's all the way in South Africa!) Alice has helped me so much since we first began talking last December (happy 1 year of friendship woman!) Although Alice has won blog awards before (pft) I'm nominating her again b/c that's how nice of a human being I am.

Rosie is a fantastic lady who had a double lung transplant and lives in Ireland. Reading her blog inspired me to start my own, and i also consider her a cherished friend who helps me understand and get through the crazy forest that is TransplantLand.

Amazing writer, had a lot of struggles pre and post tx, and very inspiring. Doing her utmost to raise awareness for organ and tissue donation in the UK and is doing a great job!

FINALLY a fellow Bronchiectasis-er. Just started her blog. Waiting for a transplant like myself, great to talk to, and she's been on O2 for 16 frigging years. You poor woman.

So I think that's all I'm supposed to do? Amy, let me know if i've somehow managed to screw this up. THANKS, YO!

(AND I'm sorry that the paragraph thing isn't working AGAIN! I want to kill blogger sometimes!)Grrr...

Monday, December 1, 2008


Hear ye, hear ye, yes it's true, I AM OFFICIALLY DISABLED.

Don't get me wrong, this isn't exactly something that i'm proud of, and you won't see me strolling around in a wheelchair for shits and giggles any time soon, but it is true, i went through and handed in my little sheet declaring that I qualify for a handicapped spot, and i was rewarded with the little permit, with that tiny blue person sitting happily in wheelchair in the right hand corner.

So i went to the Ministry of Transport, and it was awkward, b/c clearly I don't look disabled (at least I hope not). The box that my doctor checked off on the sheet states that I am an individual "with a lung disease to such an extent that total forced vital capacity in one second is less than that of 1 litre". So i stood there, and I made a point of coughing a lot, and breathing heavily, even though I wasn't out of breath, just to demonstrate you know, that I am infact, in need of a lung transplant and can't walk too far, and am essentially disabled.

So when all was said and done, I got my pass and was free to go. I was so thrilled with myself that the only thing prevently me from skipping merrily down the street was my lung disease. I then picked up my meds and all was right in the world.

That's about it really. There isn't much to say or post. I hope you're all well. Happy December 1st, yo!