As you know, I’m reading a book about cancer cells (and the woman who owned them). These cells have become a bit of an obsession for me—so much that I actually e-mailed my favorite scientist to ask if he has worked with them. (Go back to his website later this week. He’s going to update it! I promise! It’s worth a revisit!) One thing led to another, and he suggested that I queue The Emperor of All Maladies and suddenly I’m reading about cancer on my Nook and I’m reading about cancer on different scientific websites and then I’m reading about cancer on personal blogs and realizing that two people I’ve never met in real life but I feel like I know, along with one person I knew quite a few years back (along with parents of people I know and children of people I know and actual family members of mine) are in or were in different stages of several different types of cancer. And I hate that, because there’s not a whole lot I can do about it, and I like to feel as if I’m In Control.
(I *am* wearing a pink Chuck Taylor Re-Issue today on my right foot (and a pink jacket on my upper half!), but it’s not like I’m actively trying to make people aware of breast cancer. Until right now: Check yourselves, people. And for God’s sake, go get a mammogram. Seriously.)
As Sir said, “It’s important to note that people who don’t get some form of cancer at some point in their lives are the anomalies, not the other way around.”
Also, “Everything is basically conspiring against us, including, unfairly, ourselves. This is because cancer is basically you. It’s your genome that’s mutated, but the 99% of your genes that aren’t mutated are still working normally. It’s that 1% that can be a butt kicker because cancerous mutations often result in molecules that disregulate the cell’s life cycle (cells are supposed to die on a regular basis; cancer cells don’t die). Cancer cells find ways to not die and evolve rapidly to allow it to escape your immune system or chemotherapy or anything else that tries to control it. Perpetually dividing cells aggregate in certain areas and voila! Tumors. Cancer learns and grows and figures things out. It’s like a second grader. ”
It’s like a second grader. The worst possible second grader ever. I remember that kid from when *I* was in second grade. I remember that kid from Meredith’s class last year! I’m already thinking ahead to next year when Harper will be in the second grade. I already have a few names in mind! (I’m terrible. I know.)
Anyway. I’m not sure where I’m going with this other than: Cancer. It’s in my head. Figuratively.
Also in my head? ICD-9 codes. Apparently, my insurance will not cover my bone density test because “827.0 Fracture” is not an approved code. Interestingly enough, “V69.0 Lack of physical exercise” IS approved. If sloth is what I have to go for in order to have 80% of this test covered, then sloth is what it is.
Speaking of sloth, please watch this:
We’re now off to basketball practice, and Jeff returns from San Diego in eight hours.