Monday, September 30, 2013

Now We Start Throwing The Kitchen Sink At My Tongue

I got my secret medicinal weapon in the other day. Based on the speed at which things have developed for the worse in my mouth, I decided to go ahead and start using the latest weapon in my arsenal. My fist dosage was last night. I will provide the details of this weapon at a later date but for now I will detail whether it appears that this weapon is working or not.
I will use it for the next 10 days, including last nights use. This will take me up to the night before we leave for vacation. I will then start back up again as soon as we return home. 5 weeks after that I should have an idea whether this weapon is working or not.
Below are the latest photos of my tongue and the dates the photos were taken:

Taken on 9/26/2013

Taken 9/27/2013 

Taken 9/29/2013

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Veronica's 2013 Bra-Ha-Ha Entry Made It To Television

Veronica made and entered her 2013 Bra-ha-ha TJ Maxx bra entry #86 for the Chesapeake Regional Breast Cancer Awareness Drive. Her entry was displyed in the front row of an aired Community television interview. You can see her entry at the 01:36 mark on the video. Great job honey!!!!




Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Throwing Everything But The Kitchen Sink At My Tongue

I am currently throwing my whole medicinal arsenal at my tongue. Unfortunately I haven't been able to fire my big guns at it and I won't be able to until we return from our upcoming vacation. What I have thrown at it has been enough to lower the pain level but hasn't done too much to change the outward appearance of the sores and all of the other stuff in my mouth and on my tongue. It is possible that what I am taking could be bringing all of this nasty looking stuff up to the surface...I just am not sure. No matter what medicinal bombs I throw at this monster, it is going to take some time to have an impact on it.
Below are 3 photos of my tongue over the course of several days. These photos do not show what is going on further back in my mouth nor further back on my tongue:

 Taken on 9/12/2013

Taken on 9/20/2013

Taken on 9/24/2013

Monday, September 23, 2013

How Many Times Have You Told Yourself....This Only Happens To Other People

C'mon...let's not bullshit each other. If you are like me you have probably thought it plenty of times...maybe not said it aloud but thought it to yourself before moving on to something much more important like your favorite football team playing in HD on television in 5 minutes.
Yeah I know that scenario all to well..but guess what....it can and did happen to me. In the snap of the fingers or the blink of an eye...I swallowed and my tongue hurt. And that my friends was the beginning. It came without an invite and stayed way beyond last call.
If it can happen to me...it can happen to you.  Approximately 42,000 people in the US will be newly diagnosed with oral cancer in 2013.
I have decided to write in detail about this next journey. It will be on how I am doing and feeling as I walk into the ring and do battle against oral cancer. My story starts off a little different to begin with just for the fact that I have Mast Cell Disease in my bone marrow which causes me to have a compromised immune system to begin with.
I should make it very clear that I have not been officially diagnosed with oral cancer as of yet but based on my lengthy history of smoking...32 plus years...smoke free for approx 7-8  years and medical history leukoplakia, myoplasia and 2 tongue biopsies along with what is currently going on in my mouth, on my tongue and throat...I am getting real close to obtaining that official diagnosis.
The Oncologist that I see for my Mast Cell Disease has referred me to one of the best ENTs that has experience with oral cancer patients. My first appointment with this specialist is on November 5th.
I do not plan on conforming to strictly mainstream medicine to cure me and I have already started utilizing "alternative medicines".
For anyone that has any type of disease whether it be cancer to seizures, arthritis to diabetes, it is in your best interest to look into some of the alternative medicines that are out there.  For those who are interested, do a Google search for High Level CBDs, Cannabinoids and Cannabidiol. I also watched several documentaries on television about Medical Marijuana, Hemp/Hemp Oil Products, High Level CBD products. It was/is truly amazing  what these products appear to be able to do on a medicinal/healing level
I started taking the following item in hopes that it would help my current medical situation out... CanChewGum
I have been using the gum for a week and started using before most people probably would but I wanted to get a good jump on beating this thing.
What I have noticed is that whatever is going on in my mouth and on my tongue, it is happening rather quickly. One day something isn't there and the next day it is and the next day it looks completely different.
Veronica and I are beginning to wonder if the CBDs in the gum are forcing the bad stuff on/in my tongue to the surface thus making it look real bad overnight and then it subsides a bit the next day. Like I said....everything looks and changes very quickly.
Now how has all of this had on my mental and emotional state...well...this all came upon me really rather quickly. There are times that I find myself very sad, angry, depressed and then at other times it is just another day at the office . So my feelings are all over the place.
And then on the other side of the coin, I am still working on the finishing touches for our upcoming cruise.
So I guess what they say is true...life does go on.
I will post some internal mouth and tongue photos later.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Not Just Another Day At The Doctors Office

Today Veronica and I drove to Virginia Beach to see my Oncologist. I wasn't supposed to see him until December but because of all of the mouth issues that I had been and are currently having, we decided that it would be best to talk to him and get his professional thoughts and opinions about what is going on.
After going over the recent medical history involving my mouth issues and then taking a look into my mouth, my doctor stated that what was going on had nothing to do with my Mast Cell Disease.
In my words not his....my mouth is basically a pre-cancerous petri dish basically waiting its time to turn into a full blown case of cancer.
My doctor told me about a couple of things that I could do that might keep the BIG C at bay for a while. He mentioned something about freeze drying dark berries and rubbing them as a paste around my mouth...basically using berries as an antioxidant.
I did not tell my doctor that I had already done a little research on my own and was looking into possibly utilizing some "alternative medicines",
My Oncologist suggested that I go to a Eye, Nose and Throat doctor that has had  plenty of background, hands on and surgical experience dealing with patients that have Oral Cancer. He referred me to one of the top ENT cancer doctors in the area. I was lucky enough to get an appointment with this doctor shortly after Veronica and I return from our upcoming Med cruise.
Until then I will have to deal with the pain that I have in the right side of my mouth, tongue and ear. Hopefully it will subside a bit until we get back from our cruise.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

I Must Be Stuck On Some Type Of Perpetual Re-Run Play Cycle

Things occur frequently enough that I lose track of time, so please forgive me if my accuracy is off a bit. About 3-4 weeks ago I developed some soreness in the right side of my tongue, ear and neck. This is the same side that I had originally had my very first biopsy and followup surgery on approximately 6-7 years ago when I first discovered that I had Leukoplakia on my tongue. Soon after the soreness started and after looking around in my mouth, we found what appeared to be some sort of cut further back on the right side of my tongue. The next day the pain had got worse and the sore now appeared to be looking almost like a boil with a white center. By this time I was gargling with salt water....not knowing what else to do. I immediately made an appointment with my ENT doctor and we went to see him the next day. When I went in to see the doctor, the sore was almost gone except for some redness but the pain was still present. I went out to the car and got my camera and showed the doctor what the sore had looked like the day before. He was very surprised and the huge difference between what he was seeing in the camera and what was in front of him at this time.
Because the sore appeared to be going away on its own, my doctor decided to give it a few days and then return to see if the sore and the pain had completely disappeared.
So after returning home I decided to continue gargling with the salt water and I also started using some hydrogen peroxide on the sore and surrounding area.
Over the next few days, I found that the sore came back to some extent and that I felt really wiped out by afternoon. I mean I was really dragging and was not really hungry or eating much. It was during this time frame that I had watched a couple of shows that we had taped that dealt with "alternative medicines". Besides dealing with my ongoing bouts of mouth issues that have already included two biopsies, I also have Mast Cell Disease in my Bone Marrow along with having to be careful on watching what I eat and my weight because Diabetes runs in my family. Of course there is the laundry list of other mundane issues that are a pain on a daily basis...arthritis, torn meniscus in my knee.....
I decided that I would give one of these legal alternative medicines a try to see of it would help my situation..... CanChewGum.
Yesterday I got my gum in and started to use that and I also returned to my ENT. My ENT used a scope device that he put up my nose in order to look down in the back of my tongue, throat and voice box. This procedure was not one that I was looking forward to at all. It turned out not to be as bad as I was expecting but not anything that I would stand in line to have done again. Nothing dramatic was seen through this scope device other than a little redness on the back side of my tongue.
The doctor decided that we would try to take care of the sore by using an antibiotic and if this did not work then another biopsy would be in order.
If we end up doing another biopsy it would be a rough one due to the location of the sore. It is further back on my tongue compared to the other last two biopsies.
I have to go back in about 10 days to see if the antibiotics worked or not. I am hoping that between the gum, gargling with salt water, hydrogen peroxide and the antibiotics that we can get rid of this sore.
This Thursday we go to see my Oncologist to get his thoughts about this sore and to see if my Mast Cell Disease has anything to do with all of these sores and mouth issues.
Keeping my fingers crossed that goods things will happen over the next 7-10 days.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Getting Closer To Our Big Getaway

Veronica and I are only about 30 days away from flying over to Marco Polo Airport and going to Venice for a couple of days before boarding the NCL Jade for a 14 day cruise that includes visits to ports in Italy, several Greek Isles, Croatia & Dubrovnik.
I am still compiling and printing information from various on line resources and putting the info into a folder to take with us.
Tonight I will be go through the Tripadvisor web site looking at various restaurants such as pizza places, pasta places, bread and pastry shops....anything that looks good that we might want to try while we are walking around and exploring Venice. Besides the pictures on Tripadvisor, I will also look through the ratings and reviews and find a location for the ones that are chosen. I will then print out the information of each one and file them in that folder.
I had already ordered and received from Amazon.com a couple of waterproof and  detailed street maps of Venice along with a Rick Steve's Pocket Venice book.
By the time I get done, we will have more than enough information to go anywhere or to get anything we need in Venice.
I almost forgot to mention....I have been trying to get an upgrade from our Inside Cabin to a Balcony Cabin but the prices are still extremely high. My contact at NCL, whom I have been dealing with since I first booked this cruise last October, was able to get me a complimentary upgrade from our Inside Cabin to a Oceanview Cabin that has a good sized window in it and a little more room. This new cabin is in a good location on the ship also.
I will continue my attempts to get us into a Balcony Cabin as we get a little closer to our sailing date. Hopefully things will loosen up a little when we are about 2 weeks out.  

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Photos Of Tonights Beautiful Sunset Over Colington Harbor And Blount Bay

Here are a few various photos of tonights sunset. It was especially beautiful tonight with all of the colors involved




Monday, September 2, 2013

Back From Our Canadian Fishing Vacation

Veronica and I returned from our Canadian fishing vacation last night. The fishing portion of our vacation was one big disappointment. The heat made our time on the water brief. The heat wave lasted almost the whole week with the actual temps in the high 80s to high 90s but it felt much higher than that. Many days the water was like glass...flat with no ripples...no breeze and no wind to speak of.  On some days we went out early for a couple of hours then returned to the cabin so that we could get out of the sun and heat. We went out after dinner when the sun went down and it started cooling off a bit. Our cabin didn't have a/c and even with the use of multiple fans, it got really hot in the cabin. Due to the lack of time spent fishing, the actual number of fish caught were down a whole lot compared to earlier years, so for this blog entry I won't be posting any fish photos because there really weren't any larger fish caught that were worthy of posting. Veronica caught the biggest walleye between the two of us with a 23 incher. My largest walleye caught was about 21". There were just enough keepers caught to allow us to have a couple of walleye meals for dinner. The best photos taken had nothing to do with fish on this trip. Instead they we of of sunrise and sunsets on the lake.
Veronica spent many Summers as a young girl up at her grandparents fishing camp...the Eagles Nest...next to Waldhof Bay Lodge. She had also returned a few other times over the years as an adult and then introduced me to Eagle Lake after we got married.
Veronica and I have been going up to Eagle Lake for approximately 10 years. A lot has changed during this time. Over that time we had stayed at 3 different fishing camps. We had some good times and experiences and some bad times and experiences at those various camps. Unfortunately the bad heavily outweighed the good and becameso much more frequent that it became readily apparent that it was time for a change. Thus the decision to close this chapter of our lives and move on to a new lake and a new fishing camp.
We are looking forward with excitement to this new chapter which will begin next year.
I almost forgot to mention....while walking to Concourse F in Terminal 1 at the Minneapolis Airport, Veronica and I walked right by Wayne Newton and his wife. Funny...no crowds...no autograph seekers....no squealing teenage girls.....no squealing senior citizen ladies...nothing.  I think Wayne Newtons time has passed.
Here are some photos taken during our vacation up in Canada:
You can click on any photo to to enlarge it.

The colors outside of our airplane window on the morning we fly out were really beautiful. 



Below are various photos taken as we drove from the Minneapolis Airport up to International Falls and then the rest of our way to the lodge we were staying at on Eagle Lake in Ontario province near Vermilion Bay 



 We had Sirrus radio in our rental vehicle and we found a great 70s station that played some of our favorite oldies










 We come all this way only to be back in Virginia again
There was a wind turbine farm in the distance







During the drive up there was several times when the GPS would lose the satellite signal.  Showing us that we had no idea where we were.   








 Getting ready to go out for a morning of fishing




The wake of our fishing boat on the water








 Eagle watching was its highest perch
 Nothing like a walleye dinner in the frying pan














  


  
 Another great walleye dinner

 A sign outside of the Vermilion Bay dump. Unfortunately we did not see any bear while we were there
 While driving to where Veronicas lodge used to be located years ago, we came across a family of deer that were playing and frolicking in someones yard. We stopped and watched them play, took some photos and a video of them playing 




  
  

  

 We had some storms come through on Thursday that finally brough some cooler temperatures





   

 We  drove back to Ft. Francis enroute to Minneapolis via Sioux Narrows where we stopped at a souvenir store







  
Hockey Hall of Fame 




 Holiday traffic leaving St. Paul went on for miles. Lucky for us the traffic going into St. Paul was not like the traffic leaving. 


 View of St. Paul as we were entering the city


We went to the Mall of America our 1st night we were in St. Paul and then the entire next day and early evening. There was a big theme park within the Mall.  














  



We found this really cool retro womans clothing store 












 Various photos of clouds and storms










 Flying into ORF...Norfolk Airport

 While landing you could see that there were some storms in the area



 And more storms on the way home

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