Posted by: Mary Crocco | December 2, 2012

I sat dumbfounded.

Alex 096

Living with CML
November, 2012

This picture says it all when asked what I’m thankful for! This is my wonderful family – my Indie musician son, Bobby, my philosophical son, Rich, my beautiful daughter-in-law, Cherie, and my precious grandson, Alex. We shared our Thanksgiving holiday together. 🙂

November was a busy month with doctors, which I didn’t plan on. I went to my ENT doctor all excited to hear (pun intended) my perforated ear drum was healed and I would receive the go ahead to go back to my water therapy pool exercises. This wasn’t the case.

The doctor let me view my eardrum as he explained options available. I took the last option which was to do nothing. I would have the audiologist make my custom made ear plugs and hope never to get my ear wet.

Before I was fitted for the ear plugs, the doctor wanted a hearing test done. I should be used to the unexpected, but once again, I was thrown for a loop. My other ear, what I thought was my good ear, has a hearing loss of 35%. No big deal, I thought, so what? I can hear fine, (actually this did explain a lot) but still, I figured, I’ll get a hearing aid down the road, nothing to worry about. I was wrong.

The doctor took one look at the results, asked me some questions, and promptly ordered an MRI. He wanted to rule out a stroke and/or a tumor. Again, I sat dumbfounded.

Long story short, I had the MRI and all is well! The ear plugs took longer than usual to make, but I did pick them up on Wednesday the 29th and went to the pool for the first time in seven months on Thursday! It was heaven all over again. I exercised for two hours, which was my normal, knowing I would rest for three days. Next week I will go three times, and work my way back to going daily.

My ENT also told me to see an ophthalmologist for my eye. This was the third doctor who has mentioned this to me, but since my basal cell carcinoma surgery, I really didn’t want to start with this again. Anyway, I made an appointment, and was told I have severe dry eye. Again, I thought, big deal, millions of people deal with dry eye. Then he tells me he wants me to see the surgeon who removed the cancer on my eye lid to make sure it isn’t growing back. SIGH.

So I made the appointment, well, that’s a lie, the ophthalmologist asked his receptionist to make it. So the following week I went and the surgeon wasn’t alarmed. He said it looked fine, to keep applying the drops the ophthalmologist prescribed and to come back in six months for a follow up.

After all these doctors, the last thing I wanted to do was go for my six month dental cleaning! But as we all know, these appointments are hard to get, so now I’m off to the dentist. Because of all my medications, especially Gleevec for the CML, and a sensitive wisdom tooth that I do not want to even think about removing, the hygienist suggested I use ACT twice a day to strengthen my teeth. She applies a resin to the sensitive tooth every six months and this will give it a boost.

What doctor did I miss this month?!

And in between all these doctor visits I was getting ready for Thanksgiving. My son, Bob, helped me clean the house, (while I observed :), peeled the potatoes and apples, and primed the turkey. He knows how my hands cramp and believe me, with all of that to do; I don’t think I could have done it.

I took my grandson to the park, twice! His parents went with me the first time, then the next day just the two of us. I remembered how good I felt last Thanksgiving, much stronger. Just from going to the pool one time on Thursday, my legs and knees have felt better, much stronger. It’s so hard to describe the wonders of a warm therapy pool on my arthritis. It is amazing. I fully expect to gain my strength back in no time.

With this exercise comes less pills to take from the side effects of Gleevec. I’ll always suffer from them, sure, but I feel I can deal with them so much better when I can exercise. Even the nausea is less for some reason. Since I can’t exercise anywhere but in water, I’m lucky to have a gym close to my house. They even credited my absence due to medical reasons. My ENT wrote a letter.

My emotional health improves with exercise also, so I anticipate getting back to writing my book and a couple of reviews that are overdue. I have had no extra energy. I am eternally grateful to shopping online, not sure what I would do at Xmas without it.

Bob and I will fly to Reno for Xmas for four days. I would love to stay longer to be with my grandson, but for now I will take it slow. I hate the cold weather, and it was last Xmas I got sick in Sparks, and then on the flight home my ear drum burst. I’m a bit paranoid, if you know what I mean.

December I have a follow up appointment with the ophthalmologist, and a visit with my rheumatologist. I’m hoping for no surprises!!!!!!

Thank you to my readers for taking the time to read my Living with CML blog. I appreciate it and would love to read your comments.

Happy Holidays to all!

Mary 🙂

PS. Apparently there are numerous spellings for opthamologist!



  1. Hi,

    I have a quick question about your blog, would you mind emailing me when you get a chance?



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