In Eight Steps to Happiness Geshe-la says "'Self' and 'other' are relative terms, rather like 'this mountain' and 'that mountain ... 'This' and 'that' therefore depend upon our point of reference. This is also true of self and other. By climbing down the mountain of self, it is possible to ascend the mountain of other, and thereby cherish others as much as we presently cherish ourself."

Thursday, September 30, 2010

At Home Already!

Don't try to visit me in the hospital - I won't be there. They discharged me, and I'm resting at home. They sent me home with photos of my insides too.
I'll get the pathology report in a week, but my doctor thought everything looked OK (he had been pretty sure the mass was malignant, but maybe it wasn't). What prayers will do.
Thank you all so much.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Surgery Tomorrow

My laparoscopic, robot-assisted surgery is tomorrow at Swedish Hospital on First Hill. My gynecological surgeon/oncologist, Dr. Charles Drescher, will do the operation; he's said to be the best in the city.
Today I'm doing the prep, which will be familiar to any of you who've had a colonoscopy.
I'm supposed to arrive tomorrow at 6:30am; surgery is scheduled to start at 8:30am and is estimated to take about 2 hours. Richard and I hope his sister Susie will be with me.
The hospital will keep me overnight.
You're welcome to visit - best to call first; (206) 386-6000.
There's useful info about visiting at

Sunday, September 26, 2010

And Another Acupuncturist

In case that wasn't enough doctors, I'm also planning to have a phone consultation with a renowned acupuncturist in the Bay Area named Michael Broffman. My acupuncturist said she'd go to him if she had cancer, and another friend highly recommended him. Broffman's assistant directed me to call back for an appointment after I had the full report from the surgery. He's at the Pine Street Clinic in San Anselmo.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Another Naturopath

Monday, Oct 4, I have an appointment with Dan Labriola, a naturopath associated with Swedish Hospital who works with a lot of cancer patients. I met him when I accompanied Uma and liked him a lot.
Mark Gignac, the naturopath I saw a couple of times for the ovarian cancer, is farther away, in Renton, and I always seem to get lost when I go there. Labriola's main office is in Ballard, and he also has an office at Swedish on "Pill Hill" in Seattle.
Here's a web page about Labriola:

Thursday, September 23, 2010

More 2nd Opinions

I also have an appointment at MD Anderson Medical Center in Houston - it's one of the leading cancer centers in the US and they see a lot of ovarian cancer. The appointment, however, isn't until Nov 9, and I probably need to start chemo before then. I'm also on the waiting list for an earlier appointment. We'll see ...

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

2nd Opinion

I have to choose a chemo regimen, and even after reading a lot of medical research online, it's not at all clear which to do. I need a 2nd opinion.
Today I talked to medical oncologist Dr. Hank Kaplan at Swedish Hospital here in Seattle. He has a reputation as the best medical oncologist in the city. (In email a few days ago, he told me my surgeon is the best for ovarian cancer. My surgeon is also a gynecological oncologist, which is apparently different from a medical oncologist.)
I called Dr. Kaplan's office today about an appointment; his scheduler talked to him as he walked by; he said he'd prefer to call me first this evening - which he did a few minutes ago.
He said it would be easiest for him to see me after my surgery: If they keep me overnight, he'll look at my surgery report and come to my room; if they send me home, Richard will call his office to let him know, and I'll get an appointment with him next week. Amazing!
I've met him twice, when I've accompanied a good friend named "Uma" who has stage 3 breast cancer. He first saw her on a Sat morning; even his staff thought Uma was mistaken about the appointment, because he rarely works weekends - she's an MD herself, so she got special treatment. But I feel like I'm getting special treatment too.
There's more info about Dr K at

Monday, September 20, 2010

Laparoscopic Surgery Thursday

I'm having laparoscopic, robot-assisted surgery Thursday, Sept 30th, then will have chemo in early Nov. Check out the video of the robot surgery - there's a short stretch that's a bit gory toward the beginning, but on the whole it's pretty interesting.
Thank you all for your support and encouragement.