Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Some news and a PSA

While exploring a local bookstore with my mama today, she mentioned my aunt ordered a book I had reviewed on my blog.
My reaction immediately was "Mimi reads my blog?!?!" followed shortly by "Whoops, I haven't posted in awhile..."
So, thanks to my wonderful aunt (HI MIMI!!!!) I finally remembered to stop in and give y'all an update!

Sadly, there isn't much to report. It's midterms, so my life has been full of studying and working.
It all paid off for once - 92% on my bio midterm! 
(Take THAT, adviser who doubted my science abilities)
other than that, it's just been keeping my head down and getting through. At the end of the summer I was thrown a few curve balls, and looking back (and getting permission) I have decided it's an appropriate time to share.

My family got hit with a huge blow. The last week in August, the last Tuesday as a matter of fact, I received a phone call from my mother. She had had a breast biopsy the day before, and her doctor called in her results as soon as possible. 

My mom had low grade breast cancer.

This is not the first time my family has dealt with cancer. Both of my biological grandmothers and one of my step-grandmothers have fought lymphoma, as has my mom's brother. My great aunt passed away from lung cancer. My great grandfather passed away from melanoma. 

Not many of you know my mom. We have definitely had our ups and downs in the past, but ever since I started college we have grown a lot closer.
 My mom is incredible. 
She goes above and beyond when she can for those she loves
(even when they don't deserve it.)
She is always the calm, cool, collected one in crisis, 
putting on a strong front to support everyone else.

This time, we had to be strong for her.

The breast biopsy came after her regular, routine mammogram. (Ladies, who cares if it's uncomfortable. Do yourself and your loved ones a favor - get 'em checked!)
Soon after the biopsy results came back, mom's friend, an oncology doctor (and former boss), managed to get her an appointment the same week.
Surgery was the best route. 
Mom, being the optimist that she is, chose a double mastectomy over a lumpectomy with radiation.
"I finally get my boob reduction!" was her explanation. 
(Everyone in my family has a large chest. Mom and I were the same size - 38DD)
A few doctors appointments later, Mom had a surgery date. 

September 19th was the day my mom had both breasts removed.
(She helped move my sister's large furniture the night before.)
I asked her beforehand if she was nervous. Joker that mom is, she simply replied "my boobies are."
Surgery went amazingly well. A six hour long procedure and she was sent home the very next day.
She even joked about twenty minutes after she was brought back to her room that this is the flattest she has been since she was ten years old.
She is currently doing extremely well. There is no sign of cancer anymore, and as long as she stays on her meds for five years, we can tentatively say she's cancer-free. She is getting reconstructive surgery early next year.

 My mom is a breast cancer survivor. 

That is one sentence I never thought I would say, but I am damn glad I get to use the word survivor.
October is conveniently Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
Consider this the closest I will ever come to a PSA.

do self checks once a month.
get your yearly mammogram after age 40.
Pay attention to your body.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

I don't get it...

My brain is fried from studying my Bio lab for tomorrow, so tonight you get a list.

Here's what I am just not getting right now:

1. Why the hell do humanities majors have to study the science?
(Disclaimer: I love all sciences except biology. Thanks high school bio teacher for ruining cells.)

2. Why the eff is healthy food so much more expensive than crappy food?

3. My neighbors have a party every single night. How are they passing college???

4. Why can I never start a project and then actually finish it??

5. Why is American Short Story putting me to sleep, but Nigerian Lit keeping me super awake?

6. Freshman. 'nough said.

7. Relationships, why are they so freaking fracking complicated??

8. Why wasn't I born a spoiled rotten trust funder? 

9. Also, why is life so expensive?

10. Why are so many bloggers more worried about their follower number than the actual content of their posts?

11. Why can't my body ever be normal? I've got Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), over-corrective eyes (they make a fake nearsightedness to correct for my left eye's farsightedness), and now I get to go to physical therapy because my kneecap is tilted and doesn't fit in the proper notch.

12. Why am I so grumpy/whiny/exhausted ALL WEEK LONG?

So, as you can see, this really isn't my most understanding week ever.
Sorry for the rant.
Maybe this weekend I'll post something happy.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

September Book Club

So I'm almost a week late with this link up (So sorry!).
In my defense, last week was the first week of classes,
so I've been a little busy studying and all that fun stuff.
Since I never received my book from the swap,
I decided I'm gonna review not one, but two books recommended by none other than Miss Abbi.
(seriously the girl is my literary twin.)
Both are by amazing author John Green.
First up is his first novel:
image via.
Goodreads provided the following summary:
"Miles Halter is fascinated by famous last words and tired of his safe life at home. He leaves for boarding school to seek what the dying poet Francois Rabelais called the "Great Perhaps." Much awaits Miles at Culver Creek, including Alaska Young. Clever, funny, screwed-up, and dead sexy, Alaska will pull Miles into her labyrinth and catapult him into the Great Perhaps."
This book is absolutely stunning. Green draws the reader in to this little club of friends, so much that you care just as much as they all do. You can feel the adrenaline of the group pulling pranks. You can feel the teenage angst, lust, and friendship.
This book made me cry, laugh, and fall in love. One of the best novels I have read in a long, long time.
I give it 5/5 stars.
Next is Green's most recent (and extremely popular in the blog world) novel:
image via.
Goodreads's summary:
"Diagnosed with Stage IV thyroid cancer at 13, Hazel was prepared to die until, at 14, a medical miracle shrunk the tumours in her lungs... for now. 

Two years post-miracle, sixteen-year-old Hazel is post-everything else, too; post-high school, post-friends and post-normalcy. And even though she could live for a long time (whatever that means), Hazel lives tethered to an oxygen tank, the tumours tenuously kept at bay with a constant chemical assault. 

Enter Augustus Waters. A match made at cancer kid support group, Augustus is gorgeous, in remission, and shockingly to her, interested in Hazel. Being with Augustus is both an unexpected destination and a long-needed journey, pushing Hazel to re-examine how sickness and health, life and death, will define her and the legacy that everyone leaves behind"
I actually read this first, after seeing it on several blogs, including Abbi's and Danielle's.
Do yourself a favor, reader. 
Run out and buy a copy of this beautiful novel RIGHT NOW.
Or in the morning, I guess, if you can wait that long.
This novel is hauntingly gorgeous, a pure love surrounded by terrible circumstance.
Seriously, this book gave me a worse book hangover than Harry Potter, and that is definitely saying something.
It's heartbreaking, but worth every damn tear it forces you to shed.
It may also be because it came into my life when I needed it most,
but this novel instantly became a favorite.
I give it 6/5 stars.