Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Today I had an appointment with Dr. Scheinberg. I have not seen him since he visited me after the biopsy in June. There was not a whole lot to discuss, as he has not been receiving the notes from Drs. Dubovsky and Wiggers. I am sure he will rectify that sooner rather than later. I initiated this appointment with him, but he is clearly committed to remaining my "quarterback" through the treatment process. We also talked about Team Dream and his many, many research, awareness-raising, and fund raising projects for lung cancer. He was thrilled to hear of TD2009's contribution. He is putting me in touch with lung cancer survivors who are also involved in fund-raising activities, and I expect to be on his awareness-raising bandwagon as soon as I am up to it.

A thought on blogging. I can't imagine going through this process without this blog. For one thing, I think it would be too lonely. I can only entertain so many visitors, as the most conspicuous side effect of my condition and treatment is fatigue. I simply don't have much energy, even for phone calls. But this blog serves several purposes, one of which is keeping me connected with people I am not able to see, or even talk with right now. Lately, however, it is feeling a little like a one way street. I enjoy the writing, and many people have told me that they enjoy reading the blog. I wouldn't mind if you let me know by posting a comment. It does not have to be literary, witty, deep or scholarly. And if you can't figure out how to post your comment, find a teenager to help. Even 10 year olds are adept in this area.

My world is very small right now. I only intend to live this way for as long as I absolutely have to. But while I am here, please help keep me connected to the one out there that I so deeply love.


Terri said...


I read your blog everday. Would love to stop by sometime but need to know what is the best time for you. Barry bought some books for you that he finds helpful by Harold Kushner. Some are a few years old, you may already have them, but if you have not read them, maybe John or Brent could read them to you while you rest. I sent you some pictures of our trip to Montana for Barry's brother's wedding. It was quite interesting, I need to fill you in on that story sometime. Zach moves to Montgomery in a week or so to begin law school, so we will have to let you know about that. I know you are looking forward to seeing Brent and I hope your strenght rallies in time for you to enjoy his homecoming.I think of you everday.


Rachel said...

Hey - It's great that you have an activist doctor. He will be on top of the literature and connected with the greater lung cancer community and that will serve you well. An he clearly knows how to pick his patients as you will be a model spokesperson for the cause as soon as you are feeling up to it.
Your blog is a gift to all of us. Don't be discouraged by the ebbs and flows of comments. People are reading it, and are connected to you in many ways. Besides, it's summer and you might be experiencing the lull of "summer vacation."
bye for now (off line until Friday)

Anonymous said...


Just writing to pass the time. Nothing really inspiring or motivational. Just wanted to say hi. I'm beginning to recover nicely. I'll never run again, but I'm playing some golf and I guess I'm about to start biking. Taught in Albuquerque last week and Spokane next week. Alaska again in first week of August. I will look for some King Salmon to send you.


Joe Rosen

Jill said...

Hi Elyse,

I am writing you from Kennedy Space Center where I am working on redesigning their web site. What makes this experience exceptionally cool is that last year at this time I was going through exactly what you are going through now. I was in the midst of chemo and returning to a "normal" life wasn't even imaginable. As I walked around the property today I am thankful for being able to really appreciate how lucky I am. Stay strong and think about how next year you can also think back to "last year at this time."

I am continuing to send you very positive energy!!!


Anonymous said...

What are our roles in life? When we are young we are big brothers, little brothers, big sisters, little sisters, cousins, sons, daughters. We take on these roles until one day we are older..we become fathers, mothers, uncles, aunts....and eventually grandparents, great uncles and aunts......

I have a confession to make....sometimes I still miss being the little brother.....sure my kids are approaching adulthood (I think??) and I will always be "Dad"...but to have big sister blazing new trails for you..Living apart for so many years I don't have much opportunity to be little brother.....but every now and then..sure would be a nice to sit back and let big sis fight some battles for me.....maybe in a few months..but for now my role is more big brother...save the little brother stuff for later


Steve Beagle said...

Good day Ali - seems like you have won all the early rounds. Just what I expected. Keep up the strong will and you should get the TKO.

Sorry I have been out of touch. A joke for the day and then some topical late night stuff..

A shy guy into a bar and sees a beautiful woman sitting at the bar. After an hour of gathering up his courage he finally goes over to her and asks tentatively, " Um would you mind if I chatted with you for awhile.?"

She reponds by yelling at the top of her lungs, " No I won't sleep with you tonight."

Everyone in the bar is now staring at them now. Naturally the guy is hoplessly and completely embarrassed and he slinks back to his table.

After a few minutes, the woman walks over to him and apologizes.

She smiles at him and say, " I'm sorry I embarrassed you. You see, I'm a graduate student in psychology and I'm doing my thesis on how people repsond to embarrassing situations."

To which he immediately responds at the top of his lungs, "What do you mean $300?"

I once had dinner in a German-Chinese restaurant. The food was delicious but an hour later, I was hungry for power.


It was mealtime during a cross country flight on Northworst Airlines.

"Would you like dinner?" the flight attendant asked the man seated in front of me.

"What are my choices?" he asked.

"Yes or no,"she replied.

Jesse Jackson, speaking when he thought the microphone was turned off, said he’d like to cut Barack Obama’s testicles off. And in a rare example of bipartisan support, Republican Sen. Larry Craig of Idaho offered to guard them for Obama. That’s what I call reaching across the aisle.

Barack Obama says that he worries about everybody in America who might lose their job . . . unless they work for The New Yorker.

The New Yorker magazine coming under fire for this week’s cover showing Barack Obama in a turban, Michelle Obama with a machine gun, and a burning American flag in the fireplace. It’s supposed to be satire. People are really upset. Even Jesse Jackson went, “What the hell were you thinking?”

Top Ten Signs You Have A Bad Bank

10. Teller asks, "How may I swindle you?"
9. Instead of Andrew Jackson, their $20 bills have a picture of Tito Jackson
8. They promise they'll have your money if you come back after tonight's Keno drawing
7. Interest paid not in money, but in Saltines
6. ATM looks suspiciously like a Ms. Pac-Man machine
5. Loan officer will approve your loan only if you'll let him rub you
4. Bank robbers leave with a sack of IOUs
3. Most banks are backed by the FDIC. Your bank is backed by KFC
2. They made $2 million loan to Hillary Clinton campaign
1. Manager giggles whenever he says, "Early withdrawal"

Angelina Jolie gave birth to twins over the weekend. Everybody’s healthy; everybody’s happy. Then you know what happened? Angelina adopted them.

Angelina’s going to unveil her twins next week . . . no, wait a minute — that’s Pamela Anderson.

Vice President Dick Cheney had his annual checkup. It went well — during the checkup he only had three heart attacks.

In a brand new interview, John McCain admits that his staff has to show him Web sites because he has trouble getting on the Internet by himself. Yesterday, McCain tried to surf the Internet for half an hour until his staff told him that he was actually holding an Etch-a-Sketch.

A European brewery has purchased Anheuser-Busch, the makers of Budweiser, for $52 billion. Which is a shame because if they had waited until happy hour they could have paid half that.

This week Starbucks is unveiling a new drink called a Vivanno. Apparently Vivanno is the Italian word for “You just wasted $8.”

Angelina had twins over the weekend. Brad Pitt said he couldn’t wait to get his hands on the twins . . . and then the babies.

Apple says they’ve sold about 1 million of those new phones over three days. At this rate they’ll sell 10 million right around the time it starts working.

Anonymous said...

Elyse.....I have been thinking about you alot and just today, my wonderful cousin Julie shared this blog with me. Now I can keep up with you on a daily basis. You are special to so many of us.....Know you are LOVED.....Shelly

Anonymous said...

Hi Elyse,

You are in my daily thoughts and prayers. Your musings, observations and thoughts are an incredible gift to all of us - thank you for taking the time to blog and share with your family, friends and loved ones. Keep up the fight - and the Team Dream is an awesome idea!

You must really be looking forward to Brent coming home - I know Justin is!

Rock on...

ERE said...


I read your blog almost every day and think of you every day. Please know that even when I/we are not responding, we are here. Don't stop sharing with us. I sent your blog to my dear friend, Dan, who also has lung cancer (49 years old) and he said he read and re-read every entry.

I loved reading what your sweet brother wrote - thank goodness for those siblings.


Brigette said...

Hi Elyse,
I enjoy checking your blog daily and appreciate that you take the time to blog because it makes me feel connected to you even if I don't see you or talk to you. I'm looking forward to seeing you today. I haven't seen the kittens since they were little babies. I also don't think I've met Sammy Davis Jr. Jr. Brent will be home soon and I know he will help to make the days go by with more excitement!

Susan said...

ASK & YOU shall receive! What a wonderful response to your request for more communication coming your way. Your courage is so amazing not just in fighting your cancer but in bravely letting us know what you NEED. We'll keep these postings coming! Elyse, so glad that you share what you do. YOU make us all think, feel,and care so much! Loved our time yesterday. I'm still looking for pomegranates & chips ice cream though. John, you are the man! Dash, Dewey, Dot & Sammy Davis Junior, Junior: thanks for sharing an inch on the couch. My cheeks hurt from smiling as I write this. Hugs & Kisses to all in the Aussenberg/Denys family. What a family! Love, SJ

Loren said...


The Ovett are sending good thoughts your way. While we do not know you all that well we do know you have loads of determination and spirit to fight this one.
Is Brent going to be on the Nantahala this coming Monday? There is a "Camp Cup" paddling event for the NC summer camps and we will be there & could bring a care pakage up to him.
The Ovett Brothers will take Brent to the Rivers now that Sam has a year of driving under his belt.

Stay strong,


Anonymous said...


Eric and I are in the NC mountains. I love the pic of Brent at camp. Sure wish my kids would leave me long enough to have fun like that...

As soon as you feel up to it, you need to come up here and sit on the porch, read, and hang out with us.

A couple of weeks ago, my sister and the 8 kids (yes her 4 and my 4) went tubing down a river close by. Probably not as exciting as your river adventures...the water was only a few feet deep. We had to carry our tubes in 65 degree water in some places.

Anyway, I have missed you at the office and Eric is very jealous about the recent concert you went to. And, yes, he knows how to score good tickets. So call next time.

LY and feel good,

Ann said...

Writing your blog is therapeutic for you, and so many of us enjoy reading it daily also. We are all able to keep track of your progress and thoughts without having to constantly bug you, and it is a wonderful journal that you are creating. When I saw you today, you said yourself that you are the "healthiest looking cancer patient" and I have to agree. You are in such good shape and have such a great, fighting attitude that you can and will beat this. We are all learning so much from you, and the lessons of strength, endurance, and courage are among them. Thanks for teaching us so much and for your friendship.

Anonymous said...

Hi Elyse:
I return from NY tomorrow. I made the rounds of all my nieces and nephews. We have quite a brood up here. Also finished the copy for my exhibit. Put Sept. 9 on your calendar for the opening.
Love looking at Brent and Michael. I think this summer seemed better for both than last; at least they look even happier in the photos.
Bet you can't wait to get him back by this point. Let me know what he tells you and I'll do the same.
Love, Ellen

Anonymous said...

Dearest E,
I'm away but of course still thinking of you and sending love, prayers and good wishes. It is wonderful to be able to stay connected through your blog. I am so glad to be able to read all of your loving blog responses too. I hope you are eating alot, walking some and sleeping soundly at night. miss you! with love

evaschwall1 said...

Dear Elyse,
I have been keeping up with you through the blogs and thinking about you EVERY DAY with love and smiles...which have been sparked by a Springsteen song and thinking about those days... you on the back of a motorcycle or looking at the color purple and thinking of a suede baseball jackethanging in that adarable apartment on Lafayette(?) or kids in camp and thinking about Brent in camp and all that fun or kyacking and thinking of you and John and on and on...Keep Your Vision Strong and your smile bright!
Feel the love,
xo Eva

Patti said...

Tell Neil that was awesome. I'm actually a little jealous about how loved you are by so many people. But I know why you are, because I'm one of the ones who does.

When Amy and I were discussing you possibly going to NuAmy's wedding with me last week, I made a comment along the lines of, "Well, if she started feeling sick along the way, I could just pull over and let her puke." She responded, "Yeah, she owes you one," lol! And I do -- so if it gets bad when John's out of town, let me know and I'll come stay with you.


Anonymous said...

some jokes for you.....

Two elderly ladies are sitting on the front porch, doing nothing.
One lady turns and asks, 'Do you still get horny?'
The other replies, 'Oh, sure I do.'
The first old lady asks, 'What do you do about it?'
The second old lady replies, 'I suck a lifesaver.'
After a few moments, the first old lady asks,
'Who drives you to the beach?'

Three old ladies
were sitting side by side on patio chairs at their Orlando retirement
home reminiscing. The first lady recalled from
years past shopping at the local Piggly Wiggly and demonstrated, with
her hands, the length and thickness of a cucumber she could buy for a
The second old lady nodded, adding that onions used to be much bigger
and cheaper also, and demonstrated the size of two big
onions she could buy for a penny a piece.
The third old lady remarked, 'I can't hear a word you're saying, but I
remember the guy you're talking about."

A little old lady
was sitting on a park bench in The Villages, a Florida Adult community.
A man walked over and sits down on the other end of the bench.
After a few moments, the woman asks, 'Are you a stranger here?'
He replies, 'I lived here years ago.'
'So, where were you all these years?'
'In prison,' he says.
'Why did they put you in prison?'
He looked at her, and very quietly said, 'I killed my wife.'
'Oh!' said the woman. 'So you're single...?!'

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
A man was telling his neighbor in Sun City
Center, 'I just bought a new hearing aid. It cost me four thousand
dollars, but it's state of the art. It's perfect.'
'Really,' answered the neighbor. 'What kind is it?'
'Twelve thirty.'

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
A little old man shuffled slowly into the 'Orange Dipper', an ice cream parlor
in Leesburg, and pulled himself slowly, painfully, up onto a stool.
After catching his breath he ordered a banana split.
The waitress asked kindly, 'Crushed nuts?'
'No,' he replied, 'hemorrhoids.'

Lenore & Scott said...

Your blog was motivational, but Neil's post propeled me to write - cuz if Neil can post, so can I. We are still here. I guess I already determined you will be triumphant and you had so much support, I went to lurking instead of writing (ok, I guess the word is complacent). An hour doesn't go by when you are not in my thoughts (is that a double negative??). So many times I wanted to pick up the phone, but.... I guess I am used to months going by without verbally connecting and you were always still there - and I know you will continue to be.

LaurieGD said...

OK, well, this is the third time I have written this comment. I know it is so easy that a 10 year old can do it and I am really pretty computer savvy but it is giving me problems!

I am writing this from the beach (Pawley's Island) where I am taking a few days off with my oldest daughter, who is getting ready to start medical school. She's been home all summer but we've had very little time together and decided to take a few days by ourselves - what a good idea!

You know how hard it is to pull away from work even for a few days and it was tough for me. But I told her yesterday about you while we were sitting on the beach and how you never know what life will bring or what is right around the corner.

I know that your experience is helping you to apprecite the "little" special things that we tend to take for granted but I also want you to know that your experience is helping others (me) to do the same thing. I am going to try to work less, play more, and truly enjoy those precious moments with my family and friends that I love so much.

Your experience is a wakeup call for all of us. You are constantly in my thoughts and prayers.