Sunday, February 12, 2012

Chemo: Cycle 4... or 2-2?

I was having a severe pain in my left uterine area around January 19th/20th, it was only when I needed to urinate, but no pain during urination or anything, and after I urinated it was gone. It felt like my uterus was being pulled out or falling out or something. It was so severe I could barely walk. It lasted about 2 days or so. Just plain weird!

On the day of my chemo, Jan. 24th, I was having pain behind my left ear, the left side of my head, and little in my left shoulder… I was afraid I may have a blood clot. The P.A. and I decided to just wait and watch since none of it made any real sense. It wasn’t like I had a cold or sinus infection, just another weird situation. The pain moved to the right side a few days later and then disappeared.

Chemo went well… no incident.

Friday, Jan. 27th, I woke up that afternoon coughing and pain in my right lung area. By evening I was running a temperature. At 8:45 pm my temp was 101.1°, I called the on-call doctor. She put me on antibiotics, said it might be pneumonia. I didn’t think it was because the cough was not a cold kind of cough and I hadn’t been sick. You don’t wake up with pneumonia, you build up to it. But this diagnosis was with limited info and over the phone. Anyways… by 11:30 pm my temp was 101.5°… at 1:00 am it was 101.6°.

Saturday I started taking Percocet w/Acetaminophen for the pain and trying to get temp down. I was also packing my head in ice. The pain was in my right lung/chest area and extending up to my shoulder and neck area. I was in so much pain I couldn’t sleep.

By the weekend of Feb. 4th, the pain wasn’t as bad and I had this poking feeling in my throat/esophagus area and a coarseness that was causing the cough. It took me awhile but finally realized it was a yeast infection in my throat… also developed a vaginal yeast infection… all from the horrible antibiotics. So I started taking the Fluconazole (Diflucan) I had left over from December antibiotic yeast outbreak and Monistat 3 (went thru 2 boxes of it). Still couldn’t rid my body of all the yeast. On Friday, Feb. 10th, I called my doctor and got another prescription of Fluconazole, this one was 150 mg tablets instead of the 100 mg. I took one Friday night and meant to take another one on Saturday, but forgot to… regardless, the one was enough to finish eliminating the yeast. THANK GOD!!!!

So now I’m yeast free, cough free, and pain free… except for the uterine pain I’m having again when I have to urinate. What the hell!??? I can't get a break!

My Oncologist, Dr. Lola Olajide: Rex on Call - Breast Cancer

Here is my oncologist... Dr. Lola Olajide, Rex Hematology Oncology Associates (Rex Cancer Center).

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Apple's Shame

I don't buy into Apple... I don't do iPods, iPhones, iPads, Mac, or iTunes.  I don't use them, I don't buy them, never cared to have them.  There has always been something about Apple's stuff that I just didn't like.  The same feeling I had about AOL.  Just this gut feeling about how they do business.

If this kind of stuff bothers you, then quit supporting it... QUIT buying the products!  Apple is going to deny knowing anything about it, but you should know who you are doing business with... ignorance is no excuse.  Besides... everybody knows that businesses take their business overseas because it's cheaper... and we ALL know why it's cheaper... it's because the workers are being abused and taken advantage of.

Investigations Reveal Long Trail of Abuses at Apple Suppliers

Recent reports, including The New York Times’ gripping series, shed new light on the abusive treatment of workers at the tech giant’s Chinese suppliers.                   

Millions of people who have never been to China carry a piece of Longhua in their pocket. The city in the southern province of Hainan is home to one of several plants run by Foxconn Technology Group, a company that has gotten attention as the manufacturer in whose facilities poorly paid Chinese workers make iPhones and Dell computers, among other hot tech items.

This is hardly the first time reports of abuse have emerged from the closely guarded secret of Apple’s supply line. But in recent weeks, investigations, including a shocking series from The New York Times, have brought the slow-simmering waters of public opinion to a boil as they reveal the lives of the Chinese workers who labor at low cost and high risk to produce the ever-sleeker, ever-slimmer devices for which the world clamors.

1. Long Hours, Low Pay

A year before the debut of the iPhone, a British newspaper drew attention to allegations of abuse of workers at the Foxconn plant, reporting that 200,000 of the manufacturer’s workers clocked 15-hour days and were paid $50 a month to make iPods. The news grabbed attention on Mac blogs, causing the company to say that it would investigate the alleged abuses. “Apple is committed to ensuring that working conditions in our supply chain are safe, workers are treated with respect and dignity, and manufacturing processes are environmentally responsible,” Apple said in a statement at the time.

2. A Raid, A Suicide
It was a nightmare come true for Sun Danyong, a product manager in one of Foxconn’s Apple units. A prototype in his care, one of 18 beta N90 iPhones, was missing. As the Nanfang Daily reported, Sun grew increasingly upset, texting his girlfriend and another friend as he tried to find the device. The 25-year-old ran out of time and luck when Foxconn security came knocking at his door, looking for the missing iPhone. The next day, Sun killed himself by jumping out the window of his 12th-floor apartment.

3. Password Protected
An expansive industrial city, complete with sleeping quarters, cafeterias, and even banks and a post office, all locked up behind a security edifice that included metal detectors and fingerprint recognition. That’s what reporters found when they visited the Foxconn plant in Longhua in 2010. Trucks came and went, dumping raw materials and lumbering out laden with haute technology. While working on the article, a Reuters reporter found out firsthand what happens when one draws the unwanted attention of Foxconn security. While taking pictures outside a plant in the nearby city of Guanlan, the reporter was grabbed, kicked, and threatened by guards.

4. In Response to Suicides, Nets and a Pledge
A spate of nine worker suicides in three months, including that of a 19-year-old worker, at the Shenzhen Foxconn plant led to an incredible reaction among management at the manufacturer in May 2010. According to the Sydney Morning Herald, higher-ups asked workers to sign a suicide pledge, a promise not to kill themselves. As if heights were the only means available to workers ready to end their lives to escape the grueling hours and claustrophobic conditions that employees described to reporters, the company organized “roof patrols,” and hung nets from the sides of the building.

5. Apple Responds to Suicides
After the 10th employee plunged to his death, the Foxconn suicides made headlines in May 2010. Apple and other Foxconn customers issued statements, and said they would conduct their own investigations into the incidents. “We are saddened and upset by the recent suicides at Foxconn,” Apple said, saying it was in touch with Foxconn management and “we believe that they are taking this matter very seriously.” In a somewhat bizarre bid to show that they had matters in hand, Foxconn management led reporters on a tour of its Longhua location, pointing out that it would drape more nets from the dormitories where it billets its workers.

6. Techies Take Issue
The Foxconn controversy lurched into the collective consciousness of Apple’s iFanatics when a Gizmodo editor took to the pages of Wired early last year to describe what he found on a tour of the Shenzhen plant. “It’s hard not to look at the nets,” he wrote, describing the still-hanging suicide precautions that flapped morbidly around the campus. “They drape every precipice, steel poles jutting out 20 feet above the sidewalk, loosely tangled like volleyball nets in winter.” He was struck most by the sheer size of the Foxconn facility, which he wrote his guides were quick to compare to a “college campus.” Their assurances did little to assuage Joel Johnson’s guilt. After he left, the technophile found himself still asking, “When 17 people take their lives, I ask myself, did I in my desire hurt them? Even just a little?”

7. Apple Finds Children and Chemicals

Apple revealed in a report released last year that it had found 91 children working at various points along its supply line in 2010, nine times more than it found in a similar self-study a year earlier. There were reportedly underage youth working at 10 facilities that manufactured Apple products. The company’s report also acknowledged that 137 workers at an Apple supplier had been poisoned by n-hexane, a chemical that can cause extreme nervous-system damage after overexposure. N-hexane was reportedly used to clean iPhone screens.

Jobs’s conversation killer of a response? “Those jobs aren’t coming back.”

8. Four Dead in Explosion

Foxconn’s Chengdu location, said by experts to be one of the sites where iPads are produced, was wracked by an explosion in May of last year, killing four workers and injuring 18. Chengdu city officials were first to comment on the incident, and said that the blast originated with “combustible dust” in a polishing shop. The explosion led to a partial shutdown of the plant, as experts estimated the delay could cut production of iPad2s by 500,000 units in the second quarter.

9. A Real Jobs Zinger
Out-of-work Americans received some startling news via their New York Times iPhone app last Sunday. Played large and loud in front-page pixels was an account of how President Barack Obama had asked the late Steve Jobs what it would take to bring Apple’s manufacturing arms back to the United States. Jobs’s conversation killer of a response? “Those jobs aren’t coming back.” As the Times detailed, Apple has 20,000 workers abroad and 43,000 on American shores—but an additional 700,000 foreign workers are hired by Apple contractors to actually make the company’s blockbuster products.

10. The iPrice Tag
Drawing on years of reports, incidents, and material, The New York Times conducted an investigation published Thursday that pulled back the shroud of secrecy beneath which Apple’s suppliers had long operated. Former Apple executives told reporters that there’s little incentive for the company to endure the time and cost of finding alternate suppliers—and even if they went looking, there aren’t many that could handle orders of the scale Apple demands. “We’re trying really hard to make things better,” a former executive told the Times. “But most people would still be really disturbed if they saw where their iPhone comes from.”

Arnold & Stallone... funny bumping into you here!

This cracked me up... also made me feel old.

Click on photo to enlarge.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Chemo: Cycle 3... or 1-2?

I started that new chemo again --- the one geared towards my type of Lymphoma --- on Jan. 3rd, my birthday. It went okay; mom couldn’t go in with me, it’s that time of year when colds and flu are abound so no friends or family are allowed in the chemo rooms. She won’t be able to go in until April… so I get kind of bored sitting in there by myself.

I'm not sure if this counts as Chemo Cycle 3 or Cycle 1-2.

On the way home from chemo mom’s truck broke down. The radiator blew. It was about 35° out and I didn’t have a coat. We had to sit and wait for AAA to show up and for my sister to come pick us up. I was supposed to be having a special birthday dinner and the family was coming, but since the chemo took longer than expected and then the break-down, we wouldn’t have enough time to make the dinner without it running really late. So we opted to stop for Chinese take-out instead.