Friday, May 29, 2009

Weight Loss and Thoughts

Got on the scale this morning. I lost the pound back off that I gained last week. I am at 275lbs now, down from 299 lbs. In actuality I was over 300 lbs in December of 2008. I know I was because I had started to change my eating patterns and working out before I got on the scale for my initial weight.

I frankly, did not want to face that scale going over 300 lbs. So officially, I have lost 24 lbs with 126 lbs to go.

I can really feel the difference in my face. My upper arms have lost fat, whoo hoo. I am looking forward to having the skin draw up to where it needs to be. Right now I have a pair of fat wings on my arms.

There are holes/indentions on my thighs now too. They were solid. I am losing fat out of my thighs, whoo hooo! I am on my way.

On May 22nd, I got some really great news. I received the results from the MRI on my left leg/knee. Happily there were no torn ligaments, tendons or cartilage. My injury was/is a very badly sprained knee joint; and strained muscles up the back of my left calf and thigh. What to do now? Work it baby. Make it bend and just keep at it, even if it feels like it’s the very last thing you’d like to do. Ooooraaaahhhhh… just move it.

Back to the weight loss, or rather fat loss topic. My body seems to drop pounds for several weeks then plateau, for several weeks; then drop again. I am due for another drop.

I don’t think it is just my body. I think I get a bit weirded out over the fat loss/inch loss, even though I definitely want it, and get a bit bingy. It’s amazing just how much of the weight loss issue is actually psychological rather than physical.

This transformation process is truly a total transformation process. physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual. Leave any one out, or try to block the growth/transformation and the entire process falls apart.

It would seem that it is not so much a body transformation, but a life transformation.

Life is a journey, enjoy the trip
Mary E. Robbins & the Hairballs
Robbins Run Ranch: Living the Dream With Our Pomeranians
Independent Beachbody Coach: Specializing in Body/Life Fitness Transformations

Monday, May 25, 2009

For All the Women in Your Life: An Eye Opener on Ovarian Cancer

SIGNS OF OVARIAN CANCER (even in the absence of Ovaries, and no matter what age you are)


An Eye Opener on Ovarian Cancer

I hope you all take the time to read this and pass it on to all you can. Send this to the women in your life that you care about.

A few years ago, Gilda Radner died of ovarian cancer. Her symptoms were inconclusive, and she was treated for everything under the sun until it was too late. This blood test finally identified her illness but alas, too late. She wrote a book to heighten awareness. Gene Wilder is her widower.

KATHY'S STORY: this is the story of Kathy West

As all of you know, I have Primary Peritoneal Cancer. This cancer has only recently been identified as its OWN type of cancer, but it is essentially Ovarian Cancer.

Both types of cancer are diagnosed in the same way, with the "tumour marker" CA-125 BLOOD TEST, and they are treated in the same way - surgery to remove the primary tumour and then chemotherapy with Taxol and Carboplatin.

Having gone through this ordeal, I want to save others from the same fate.. That is why I am sending this message to you and hope you will print it and give it or send it via E-mail to everybody you know.

One thing I have learned is that each of us must take TOTAL responsibility for our own health care. I thought I had done that because I always had an annual physical and PAP smear, did a monthly Self-Breast Exam, went to the dentist at least twice a year, etc. I even insisted on a sigmoidoscopy and a bone density test last year. When I had a total hysterectomy in 1993, I thought that I did not have to worry about getting any of the female reproductive organ cancers.

LITTLE DID I KNOW. I don't have ovaries (and they were HEALTHY when they were removed), but I have what is essentially ovarian cancer. Strange, isn't it?

These are just SOME of the things our Doctors never tell us: ONE out of every 55 women will get OVARIAN or PRIMARY PERITONEAL CANCER.


I had these classic symptoms and went to the doctor. Because these symptoms seemed to be "abdominal", I went to a gastroenterologist. He ran tests that were designed to determine whether there was a bacteria infection; these tests were negative, and I was diagnosed with "Irritable Bowel Syndrome". I guess I would have accepted this diagnosis had it not been for my enlarged abdomen. I swear to you, it looked like I was 4-5 months pregnant! I therefore insisted on more tests.

They took an X-ray of my abdomen; it was negative. I was again assured that I had Irritable Bowel Syndrome and was encouraged to go on my scheduled month-long trip to Europe . I couldn't wear any of my slacks or shorts because I couldn't get them buttoned, and I KNEW something was radically wrong. I INSISTED on more tests, and they reluctantly) scheduled me for a CT-Scan (just to shut me up, I think). This is what I mean by "taking charge of our own health care."

The CT-Scan showed a lot of fluid in my abdomen (NOT normal). Needless to say, I had to cancel my trip and have FIVE POUNDS of fluid drawn off at the hospital (not a pleasant experience I assure you), but NOTHING compared to what was ahead of me.

Tests revealed cancer cells in the fluid. Finally, finally, finally, the doctor ran a CA-125 blood test, and I was properly diagnosed.

I HAD THE CLASSIC SYMPTOMS FOR OVARIAN CANCER, AND YET THIS SIMPLE CA-125 BLOOD TEST HAD NEVER BEEN RUN ON ME, not as part of my annual physical exam and not when I was symptomatic. This is an inexpensive and simple blood test!


Be forewarned that their doctors might try to talk them out of it, saying, "IT ISN'T NECESSARY." Believe me, had I known then what I know now, we would have caught my cancer much earlier (before it was a stage 3 cancer). Insist on the CA-125 BLOOD TEST; DO NOT take "NO" for an answer!

The normal range for a CA-125 BLOOD TEST is between zero and 35. MINE WAS 754. (That's right, 754!). If the number is slightly above 35, you can have another done in three or six months and keep a close eye on it, just as women do when they have fibroid tumours or when men have a slightly elevated PSA test (Prostatic Specific Antigens) that helps diagnose prostate cancer.

Having the CA-125 test done annually can alert you early, and that's the goal in diagnosing any type of cancer - catching it early..

Do you know 55 women? If so, at least one of them will have this VERY AGGRESSIVE cancer. Please, go to your doctor and insist on a CA-125 test and have one EVERY YEAR for the rest of your life..

And forward this message to every woman you know, and tell all of your female family members and friends. Though the median age for this cancer is 56, (and, guess what, I'm exactly 56), women as young as 22 have it. Age is no factor.

Well, after reading this, I made some calls. I found that the CA-125 test is an ovarian screening test equivalent to a man's PSA test prostate screen (which my husband's doctor automatically gives him in his physical each year and insurance pays for it). I called the general practitioner's office about having the test done. The nurse had never heard of it. She told me that she doubted that insurance would pay for it. So I called Prudential Insurance Co, and got the same response. Never heard of it - it won't be covered.

I explained that it was the same as the PSA test they had paid for my husband for years. After conferring with whomever they confer with, she told me that the CA-125 would be covered.

It is $75 in a GP's office and $125 at the GYN's. This is a screening test that should be required just like a PAP smear (a PAP smear cannot detect problems with your ovaries). And you must insist that your insurance company pay for it.

Gene Wilder and Pierce Brosnan (his wife had it, too) are lobbying for women's health issues, saying that this test should be required in our physicals, just like the PAP and the mammogram. PLEASE TAKE A MOMENT TO SEND THIS OUT TO ALL THOSE YOU CAN. BE IT MALE OR FEMALE, IT SHOULD NOT MATTER, AS THEY CAN FORWARD IT ALSO TO THOSE LOVED ONES THEY KNOW.

This came into my email today. Had to share it!

Life is a journey, one day one step at a time
Mary E. Robbins
Robbins Run Ranch: Living the Dream With Our Pomeranians
Independent Beachbody Coach: Helping Other's Reach Their Fitness and Financial Goals


Monday, May 18, 2009

Mists of Lore & News of the Past 2 Months

Listen all to the tales of yore
Lived we have in the mists of lore

Shadowy forms just out of sight
Fighting doubt in the misty light

Silvery wings, dragon’s breath
Lute’s that sing, tales of death

Unicorns, Centaurs, Cerberus too
Dancing under the aged Yew

Circles round and round did flow
What say you, to Stonehenge go

What truths are hidden in the fairy’s tale
What tales do the banshees’ of the highlands wail

Hear ye now and doubt no more
Lived we have in the mists of lore

author: Mary E. Robbins

A friend on facebook posted about fairies, gnomes, lore as a result this came pouring out of my soul.

I apologize for being absent, I haven’t been posting much on my blogs since March 25th. It has been a challenging couple of months. On March 25th, I damaged my left knee. I am still not walking well. However with some effort I can get up off the loveseat.

Last Friday I had an MRI on my knee. This coming Friday I should get the results. Then hopefully get some input on rehabbing my knee.

Frankly It amazes me that I damaged it at all. Considering my lifestyle of the past. I’ve ridden broncs, back packed for miles and miles over rough terrain, ran over rough terrain, wiped out on bicycles while clipped in, and so on and so on. March 25th, I hyperextended my left knee falling off a 6 ft snowdrift. How pathetic is that.

Of course when I was doing all those other activities I wasn’t 150 pounds overweight. As in fat fat fat. Both the doc and my chiropractor think I’ve torn my ACL and Meniscus. The MRI should tell the story for sure. I am hoping upon hope that I do not have to have surgery, but I will do whatever I have to do to rehab my knee.

I started doing hip hop abs again the day before yesterday. I put my hinged brace on and made the knee work. It’s bending better as a result. The rest of the day was spent icing then moving, icing then moving. Trying to quiet the screaming muscles in the back of my leg.

We had the late march blizzard, that resulted in my jacked up leg, and pulling all the Poms into the whelping house for weeks. There were some seriously pissed off hairballs. They wanted out to run and play in the snow and mess. Unfortunately the outside runs were buried under 6 ft of snow. Drifted over the tops of the surround fence, making it very unsafe for the poms to be out and about. The predators could walk in and snatch them up, so they had very short outside jaunts in the one little area we were able to clear out to some extent.

Then here came another blizzard in the first part of April. Good grief! On the bright side the grass is growing like crazy now.
The hairballs are able to be outside playing in their runs again. Happy hairballs one and all, lol.

They were still inside for the most part on April 14th. There had been so much moisture that we needed to wait until the ground dried out to some extent. The evening of April 14th, I had just sat down to watch the Biggest Loser; when I received a screaming phone call from my mom’s neighbor to the west. I’ll never forget that phone call. She said, “Your mom’s house is on fire, you need to get over here” that’s all I heard.

I live 13 to 17 miles from my mom’s house depending on whether you take all dirt roads or go on the highway part way. I called 911 and reported the fire, Decided to take my mom’s minivan over there (we kept it here for her) just in case they had gotten her out. I remember trying to stay calm driving, so I wouldn’t wreck the minivan. David was gone on the train, so I was dealing with it alone. I was taking deep breaths gulping back fear and tears, seeing my mom’s little dog in my mind’s eye. Wondering if my mom was burned alive or if she had gotten out alive.

As it turns out our family home of over 100 years is burned to ashes and rubble; Utter devastation. The neighbor to the east had broken down the door, and the neighbor to the west went in with him and they got mom out in a broken power wheelchair. Her 8 Poms, and her birds died in the fire. From what I understand the flame jumped over the door when they took mom out and no-one was able to go back in to get the dogs out. Guess that’s why I kept seeing her face on the drive over.

Mom was in shock for over a week. The experience shocked her so much that she is still unable to transfer from one chair to another on her own. She is living with us now. She is doing much better than she was. On a bright note we have actually been able to spend some quality time together. Perhaps get to know each other as people.

We are reconfiguring our home, sorting out a room for mom. Integrating her into our home.

I had started a 90 day action plan. I am still working on it. Although it looks significantly different than what was originally intended. My workouts had to change. I have been doing my ranch rounds as workouts. Frankly when I had everyone crated for most of the day it was taking all I had just to take care of them. I was working on the crates for around 4 hours a day non stop. With the leg injury that was knocking me out. I did continue to drop weight. I have lost 24 pounds and 18 inches so far. Whoo Hoo! 126 pound to go for the 150 pound weight loss goal.

Today is day 71 in my 90 day action plan.

One day one step, one pound at a time. We have had some major challenges over the past 2 months. It would be very easy to be bitter and defeated. It is a conscious decision to view these events as challenges, and move on. What positive things have come out of these experiences?

I’ve lost more fat. I spent some quality time with my Poms. We have a new litter of puppies. Snickers and Barron had puppies today. The little cuties. I’ll do photos over the next few days.

Trimmed toenails, and worked on grooming as I was working with the hairballs. Will be working on spring grooming daily.

Mom and I now have a chance to actually spend some quality time together. The past several years have been strained. I’d been worried about her living there alone; and she was adamant that she was unwilling to even consider spending time elsewhere. I know that she is getting good nutrition. She has started doing the Tony and the Folks workout. Modified of course, but she is trying. She worked out in her lift chair today with some exercise bands. These are good things.

The fire purged our family home. But we have come through the fire and are growing like new growth after a forest fire.

Life is a journey, sometimes there are twists in the trail.
Mary E. Robbins & the Hairballs
Robbins Run Ranch: Living the Dream With Our Pomeranians

Independent Beachbody Coach: Changing People's Lives

Saturday, May 02, 2009

Morning Glories, May Snow Showers, Messed Up Knee

Morning glories are one of my favorite flowers, morning glories, 4 o’clocks, bearded iris, peonies, holly hocks, baby’s breath, wild roses, blue flax, bachelor buttons, and lavender.

There are tiny purple flowers popping up all over the place. I am sure someone would call them a weed. But they are beautiful enmass just the same.

It’s cool and wet out this morning, looks like more rain for today. Fortunately it’s not a downpour, so the ground can actually absorb it; rather than having flash floods cut into the hillsides once again.

The meadowlarks and robbins have been singing. Spring is here, spring is here. Seems strange that yesterday morning we had a light spring snow. Snow on May day, haven’t seen that in a while.

Today I woke up feeling like I’d been run though one of those old fashioned washing machine wringers. Yesterday was a rough day. It actually started out pretty good.

Got on the computer and decided to call Microsoft to see how to fix a bit of code in IE8. I thought it would be a simple quick fix; well it was actually once we found it…lol. The Tech that was working on it was a nice guy, he did a good job. Frankly it still took less time than pulling my computer apart loading it in the truck and carting it into town for the techs there to work on it. All in all it went pretty well.

Then it’s on to attack the monstrous pile of dishes in the kitchen. Wiped them out. Taa Daa! David was home and helped dry. So far so good.

My knee had been doing pretty well; I was thinking it would be a good idea to give it a soak though. I’d just made coffee and I was in the process of putting a meal together for Mom, David, and I when I made an awful error. I sat down. Who’d a thought? I stepped over to the table to sit down with my husband and have a cup of coffee. Wow, I just sat down. As it was my knee was misaligned. Once I started to sit down I couldn’t stop, and the sitting action forced the knee to bend anyway. I don’t scream very often but I did then.

The pain that ripped through my leg must have triggered a massive acid dump in my stomach. Because the rest of the day and night was spent dealing with one of the worst gastric attacks I’ve had in a very long while. Geez, mount Vesuvius erupted in my intestines. That’s the first time in a very long time that a gastric attack has caused me to pass out. Good grief. Who’d a thought, obviously not me.

At any rate it’s over now. I’m tired but functional.

I have the dog food started on the stove, getting ready to add the vitamins and minerals and get the hairballs fed for the day. Frankly I’m looking forward to getting outside. I am going to put the knee brace on today I think. To help hold it together. I am pretty anxious to hear what the doc says on the 6th about my knee.

Pat was a Godsend last night. She came out (We live 17 miles out of town) and transferred mom and got her set up for the night. I had collapsed from the gastric attack and it wasn’t safe for me to lift her. I am not sure how all this is going to work out. I guess it will one way or the other.

I do know one thing for sure. I am so looking forward to having my knee healed up. That I do know. I flat refuse to sit down and not function. I may fall down, but I am getting back up and going again. I am not stopping.

You can see them all over the place. People who have stopped. Just sat down and became weaker and weaker, to the point that they can no longer care for themselves. In a lot of cases fatter and fatter as well. I refuse to be that person. I am going to ask the doc what I need to do to rehab my knee. If she doesn’t know I’ll ask someone else. In the mean time, I started using a pedal machine, it seems to loosen up the muscles pretty good. My knee joint is really lose and sloppy, but the muscles have become so tight they are almost rigid. How’s that for irony.

Enough of that, I want this house cleaned up. Ugh, it’s nasty. Ok, I’m outta here. Heading for the kennels.

Have a wonderful day…

Life is a journey, sometimes there are boulders in your path…climb over them!
Mary E. Robbins & the Happy Hairballs
Robbins Run Ranch: Living the Dream With Our Pomeranians
Independent Beachbody Coach: Helping others reach their life goals


'Daily Affirmation' Video