Tag Archives: lung mass

Warning – there is a picture of a real, live tumor embedded in this post

Alright, I’m going to stall a bit. Why, you ask? Because when this blog post is opened on your laptops, tablets, smart phones, etc., I need there to be enough text here to fill the screen. I want you to have to scroll down to see the picture below. I don’t want it to pop up unexpectedly and frighten anyone. So, I need to fill a little space here and use long words like “hippopotomonstrosesquipedalian” which, ironically, means of or pertaining to extremely long words … and “floccinaucinihilipilification” which means the estimation of something as valueless, such as this introductory passage. I could even use this opportunity to extol the many virtues of the East African Naked Mole Rat but, after yesterday, we all know where dedicated ODNT follower, El Guapo, stands on these beloved rodents. So, I’ll try to resist the urge.

(A distant voice calls out from offstage. Speaker turns to acknowledges the voice.) What? That’s enough? (Turns back to address the audience) Okay. Well, let’s get on with it then.

A few days ago, I mentioned that I actually had a picture of my old friend, the lung mass, taken during surgery last week. And I decided to let you determine whether or not I would post this picture … in all of its blood-and-gutsy glory … on the blog. And do you know that, despite having featured three prior polls all related to boobs aka the roots if not the backbone of this website, the ‘Wanna see a picture of the tumor?’ poll had the greatest response to date. (I guess I could change the ‘T’ in ODNT to tumor.)

There were three options available in the poll – yes, no and do-whatever-but-warn-me-first. Because the yes vote was so much higher than the no vote, we at ODNT decided to do it … and, per the request of many, we are warning you first.

So, all of that said, I give you … the tumor.


I’m pretty sure you can identify it (dead center) in this picture but, to give you your bearings, the rings around it that appear on the left are my ribs. Directly beneath it in black is some kind of major artery. And the slightly deflated pink entity below that is my lung. Dave thinks it looks like the top of Patrick’s starfish head. (My daughter watches a lot of SpongeBob.)

Yes, it’s gross. It’s a body’s interior after all. But I’ll add that my family said that the doctors and medical staff couldn’t stop talking about my beautifully pink, healthy insides. I’m blushing.


Because of the location of my incisions, I cannot wear a bra. Does anyone else find this ironic?

Over the course of the last few weeks, I’ve been asked many times if having this lung surgery would have any impact on whether or not I’d still be pursuing breast surgery in the future.  And, prior to December 1st, my answer was always the same.

I don’t know.  I need to meet the Michele who walks out of that hospital without a lung mass. Then, I’ll let you know.

Geez. What a pretentious ass.  Referring to myself in the third person.  Honestly, sometimes Michele can be such an idiot.

And, now that it’s after December 1st and the infamous lung surgery is behind me, I’m here to tell you that I still don’t know.  Do you ask a crazy-from-sleep-deprivation, postpartum mom with purple bags under her eyes while she’s holding a screaming infant if she wants another baby? No, not unless you enjoy a good flogging. It’s just too soon.

Ironically, my current state of temporary surgery-mandated bralessness serves as a constant reminder of why we all started hanging out together in the first place.  Still, considering that I can’t get up from a reclined position without releasing audible manifestations of my pain, I’m going to stick with “It’s too soon”  for now and focus on healing and getting up to speed with everything again.  And I assure you that you’ll be the first to know when we can get back to our roots.

Until then, I promise not to dwell on Naked Mole Rats too much … but that doesn’t mean we won’t talk about all kinds of other completely meaningless and utterly useless information.  Remember, one man’s mindless drivel is another woman’s blog fodder.


Observations from the hospital

Michele is doing well. The kids got to visit for a short time tonight, which was great medicine for everyone. Our daughter hit every automatic hand sanitizer in the place, entering and exiting, and should be germ free to the bone until 2012. My apologies to the Germ-X refill guy. I assume tomorrow Michele will be taking the wheel of this ship back from “Gilligan” and hitting me repeatedly with her hat. I will leave you all with a few observations from the hospital:

People complain about hospital food but the fried chicken is always good. Always.

Kids don’t have the life experience to fill in the blanks. This can serve them well or scare them to death. You can only hope they open up enough to give you a clue as to what they do and do not understand.

“Scrubs” should not be allowed on hospital televisions. It really underscores how completely unfunny real hospitals are.

Insurance, prescription drugs and other woes aside, modern medicine is really pretty incredible.

Somebody needs to invent wireless heart/chest monitors. It looks like somebody dropped a giant marionette on the bed.

Etc., etc…It’s been a long day. There are still questions to be answered, but today went about as well as we could have hoped for. I don’t know what battles we have ahead, but right now…tonight…I feel like a pretty blessed, lucky guy. Thanks for checking in and following this blog. It means a lot to her. And she’s right. It’s pretty darn therapeutic. Goodnight.


At least it won’t be MY house that has turkey bits falling between the counter and the stove this year

In seventeen years, I have only missed hosting Thanksgiving three times:

(1) 1999 – My son was born just a few weeks earlier and no one in my sleepless household was up to the task.

(2) 2005 – Two words. Hurricane Katrina. No home = no hosting space.

(3) 2006 – Still Katrina. That bitch meant business and kept us down for a while.

I love hosting Thanksgiving. It actually might be my favorite holiday … for the same reason that the rehearsal dinner is my favorite part of a wedding and Thursday was my favorite day of the week when I worked in a traditional office setting. These things all serve as the gateway to the main event. They are the proverbial firing of the starter’s pistol at the beginning of the race. That exciting overture is always my favorite point in time for most anything.

So, it was with heavy (well, let’s be honest … heavy-ish) heart that I relinquished the reins of a fourth Thanksgiving. To my wonderful parents, of course. Who were more than happy to help me and take hold of the hosting duties, which they don’t have as often as they’d like. (That last part really probably only pertains to my mom.)

I know my husband also really likes hosting for the holidays … so we’re at our own home. (Sorry, D.) And we like watching … or at least peripherally experiencing in the background … the whole Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. It’s a tradition I’ve observed since I was very young. I love watching the Broadway performances, seeing the gargantuan character balloons (especially the vintage ones) and even listening to the cheesy banter between the hosts. And tomorrow is no exception. I don’t want to miss New Orleans’ own 610 Stompers. I’m proud to call several of these goofy male dance teamers my friends and can’t wait to see the show. I better not miss it since I’m changing locations this year.

Stupid lung mass. (cough, sputter) I mean … Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!


From junkyard cow clocks to lung masses – everything deserves a name

I knew the second I hit ‘publish’ last night that closing out the post with a reference to my cow clock made of spoons and then not including a picture of it was a colossal mistake.  Of epic proportions.  What was I thinking?  

So, here he is, in all his recycled bovine splendor.  We picked him up on vacation from a little gallery in Skagway, Alaska. We took one look at him and knew we had to have him.  The spoon parts always get top billing in our description of his composition, but he also boasts a bread pan, a mason jar lid and various other nuts and bolts in his design.  We named him ‘Cowie.’  We are a simple people who tend to name most things in our household … including kitchen knives, scrap metal squirrel-rats and Magnolia trees in the front yard.


Which reminds me …  my sister-in-law thinks I should name the lung mass.  I feel it is male but am open to female names and gender-neutral suggestions as well.  Pop culture references, relevant homages and pithy puns are all welcome.  Let’s name the damned thing as we’ll be getting to know him/her/it pretty well in the next few weeks.  Please submit your ideas below.

Oh, and if you’ve never commented on the blog before … Geez, register yourself already and throw your idea in the ring.  What’s keeping you?


Wanna keep abreast of all new ODNT postings? Like me on Facebook. Follow me on Twitter.

Waiting in the thoracic specialist’s office … and thinking about Spam

Waiting in the specialist’s office hoping he can give me some answers … and realizing how lucky I am. I am blessed. Sure, I have an unexplained lung mass … but I am blessed. With the most amazingly supportive network of friends and family for which a girl could ask. I don’t know why I was awarded this gift or why I so often take it for granted. Regardless, I’m glad to be sitting here with my husband and my dad. And everyone else. In spirit.

I will be fine, by the way.

Oh, and it’s my Dad’s birthday. And he’s spending it seated next to me in this waiting room all morning.

Happy birthday, Dad.


A friend of mine made this magnificent Spam cake for my dad’s milestone birthday last year.