Friday, September 30, 2011

Dermatological Update

So, here's the scoop, following our visit with the dermatologist yesterday.
First, it took us from 7:50am until 9:15am to make the trip from our home to her office (should have taken 40 minutes tops).
Why, you might ask?
Well, the only explanation we can offer is because it was raining ever so lightly in Ottawa. Bizarre phenomenon that but 'twas ever thus!
But I digress.
Of the three biopsies that had been done on John, one was precancerous (it was frozen off yesterday); one is basal cell carcinoma and will be scraped off at a later date; the third is squamous cell carcinoma and will be removed by way of MOHS surgery (subsequent to the MOHS surgery which he already has to undergo).  Two more biopsies were taken, the results of which will be known when he returns on October 12th to have the basal cells scraped.
Then we moved on to my results (the biopsy taken on my nose).
It is basal cell carcinoma and while scraping is an option, she recommended MOHS surgery.  That way she could be sure to get all of it and not risk it coming back at some later date and taking more of my nose with it.
Somone from the hospital will be in touch about the date of the surgery.
I don't know about you, but it seems to me that my life of late revolves around waiting for a call from one medical professional or another about one procedure or another.
Now I'm in the queue for:  hip replacement surgery; a sleeping EEG; and MOHS surgery on my nose.
And before the end of this year, I'll also be having my quarterly visit to my dentist; my annual hearing test;  my biennial mammogram; my quarterly ear-vacuuming visit with my ENT specialist; and my all-too-frequent check-in with my eye doctor.
Gosh, getting old is fun, isn't it?

Thursday, September 29, 2011

It's going to be a long day

Uh oh, now I'm in trouble.
Here it is, just 5:15am and I'm already up for the day.
We didn't go to bed until after midnight last night.
Got sucked into watching the baseball wild card races and one went into rain delay, while two went into extra innings.  But oh they were exciting finals.  Come-from-behind wins on two fronts made for a fabulous wrap-up of the regular season.
Now we head into post-season, without my beloved Blue Jays of course.
So I'll cheer for the Tampa Bay Rays to take the American League Pennant (although the Yankees will be favoured to win).
I'm torn about the National League.  My fave pitcher, Roy "Doc" Halladay plays for the league leading Philadelphia Phillies and I know how badly he wants that World Series ring.  But Johnny Mac is playing for the Arizona Diamondbacks and they also have a chance.  Johnny wanted a chance to play in the post season and he's getting that.  Just how far into the season his team will go remains to be seen.  Would be nice to see them take it all.
I guess I'm hoping to see a National League team win the World Series in 2011.  As long as it's either the Phillies or the Diamondbacks.

We have to go into the big city this morning to see the dermatologist for the results of the biopsies she took at our last visit.   And she has to do another biopsy on John. Our appointments are at 9:15am and 9:30am.  If our last visit is any basis of judgement, we'll be a while. 
Hopefully, we'll be back to this neck of the woods on time for me to partake of my weekly massage therapy session.  My therapist was due to come to my home at 1:00pm today but I spoke to her yesterday and told her to wait for my call since I didn't know what to expect with this appointment this morning.  If I get back on time, I will go to her.  She told me that if push came to shove, I could get there as late as 2:00pm.
Here's hoping I can at least make that later timeslot.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Oh the travails ...

My life just keeps getting more and more complicated (or I'm simply becoming less able to cope).
I hadn't yet blogged about a distressing incident that happened while we were away earlier this month so I'll describe it now.
On our second night of travel, our first in the hotel, I awakened in the wee hours with a sense of something being "not quite right."
And I had to go to the bathroom really badly.
I disconnected myself from the CPAP machine and made my way to the washroom.
I remember having my hand on the light switch (it was the toggle-type) but not being able to make it work.  The light simply would not turn on. Fortunately, there was an excellent night light in place so I was able to make my way to the toilet on time.
And when I say "on time" that is precisely what I mean. Because I for one would not have wanted to clean up the mess that would have ensued had I not got there.
Everything was spinning by this time, and I tried to call for John to come help me, but no sound would come out.  I knew it was going to be lights out.
Which is exactly what happened.
When I came to, some 30 minutes later, I was still sitting on the commode and I had immediate recall of the event.
But, oh I wanted to sleep.
I cleaned up and made my way back to bed.
As I was hooking myself back up to the CPAP machine, I first checked the AHI to that point.
It was an astonishing 168 after only 2.5 hours of sleep!
I remember thinking, "That can't be right, I should have been dead!"
But I had to go back to sleep.
When I woke at around 6:00am, my AHI had dropped to 47 (still way too high but having been 168 at 2:30am, I guess this was progress).
The target AHI is less than five.
You will recall that the AHI is the total number of apnea/hypopnea events that occurred divided by the duration slept (in hours).  And the machine only registers breathing cessations longer than ten seconds.  So how on earth do I get an AHI of 168 after only two and a half hours of sleep?  I must have been "not breathing" the entire time!
I felt perfectly normal the next day but was concerned.  Had I had a seizure?  How would we ever know?  There were no witnesses to what had happened.  Yet the incident had all the hallmarks of every other seizure I've had.
On my return home, I booked an appointment with the respirologist so he could give me a printout from the CPAP machine for that night.  When he looked at the report, he immediately suggested that I certainly might have been seizing because "something fishy was going on.  These numbers are off the chart."
I brought the report to my doctor yesterday and explained what had happened so he checked me out thoroughly.  There appears to be "nothing amiss."
But he ordered bloodwork again, the whole gamut.  And I was to go "immediately, first chance I get, fasting."  (I did that this morning.)
He's also requesting another EEG, on a priority basis, to see if it will give us answers.  Obviously, since I don't have these events during the day (I have nocturnal epilepsy), an EEG taken during the day would be of little value; it's always going to show normal.  So we discussed having a sleeping EEG performed.
My doctor suggested that we could do the sleeping EEG and if I don't have an episode, we still might not be any the wiser.
I maintain that when I sleep, my brain does funky stuff.  Just because I don't always have a seizure, does not mean that an EEG won't show abnormal brain waves while I'm in a sleeping state.  As I recall, the only way we found out that I had nocturnal epilepsy, way back in 1988, was because I just happened to briefly fall asleep during a routine EEG.  Immediately that I did, the wonky brain waves started.  My neurologist was able to diagnose me because of that single occurrence.
My doctor's office will contact me to let me know when I am to go for that EEG.  Depending on the results, he will refer me back to the neurologist.
So, the waiting starts anew, again.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Oh for a night's sleep

This will have to be a quick post.
After a fun-filled week-end with my stepson and his wife, I'm now facing a busy week.
Today, I head into the big city for an overnight visit at my little chickadee's place (time for a haircut again!).  And this trip will be combined with a dinner with my other daughter who is visiting from Toronto so that's a nice bonus.  I haven't seen her in quite some time.
Tomorrow morning, I'll take my beautiful boy for breakfast before delivering him to school and then I'll go to my early morning doctor's appointment (which is why I'm overnighting tonight).  Following that appointment, I'll meet my good friend, RLR, for breakfast and we'll sit and chat until close to noon to be sure.
Then I'll head home.
I'm hoping to move my usual Thursday massage to Wednesday because ...
On Thursday morning, John and I will go back to the big city to see the dermatologist.  We'll find out the results of the biopsies that she took at our last visit.  She'll have to do another biopsy on John, unfortunately.
All of this comes on the heels of my not getting enough sleep for way too many consecutive nights.
I'm starting to move to the wrong side of the sleep deprivation scale.
All because of my hips.
Since that last steroid injection wore off, it seems that my hips are worse than they ever were.
At least sleeping has become a bigger challenge for me.
Nothing is comfortable.
Not even sleeping on my back.
The CPAP machine almost forces me to sleep on my left side but I simply can't stay that way for any length of time.
Sleeping on my right side is totally out of the question on many levels:  the machine blows cold air onto John; my right hip simply won't tolerate the pressure; and the mask won't stay on properly for some reason.
Once I go onto my back, it seems that my snoring is such that I work the mask right off my chin, suggesting that I might have to resort to a chin strap in addition to all the other paraphernalia that I already have to wear!
There just don't seem to be any easy answers.
I guess once I get my hips fixed, all these issues will be moot, but in the meantime ...
... I need a good night's sleep.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Another fun weekend ahead

Blogging is becoming more and more of a challenge of late.
There just doesn't seem to be time any more.
Before I know it, the day is behind me and I haven't put anything to paper, as it were.
I promise to be more diligent in the days ahead.  At least I'll try, anyway.
This weekend, my stepson and his lovely wife are here again, staying in their trailer.  It's opening season for duck hunting and he and my husband are going to spend both early mornings up in the woods waiting for their prey.
That means having a hearty breakfast ready for them when they come in with their bounty, cleaning up from that meal and then preparing the evening feast (a chore usually left to John).
Today's ballgame is an evening one, which is unusual for a Saturday, so I may or may not see it all.
And tomorrow, the schedule starts all over again.
I must say though, I am enjoying this time with my step daughter-in-law (she who is a year older than I).  She's a lovely lady.  It's such a joy getting to know her and finding out that we are very similar in so many ways.
And, as she puts it, she is learning so much from her new "Mummy."

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

My grandfather's cousin

The saga of the British Home Children is truly a sad one.
I've written before about my three grandparents who were all British Home Children, having come to Cananda in 1911 and 1912.
Until last week, as far as I knew, the first Cherryholme actually born in Canada was my father's sister, my Aunt Jeannette, who arrived in 1920.
Well, wasn't I in for a surprise.
Last week, I received notice from that the Ontario Birth records had been updated to include the year 1913 (they add a year each year as the information is released to the public domain).
As is my habit, every time I become aware of new records, I plug my family name into the search engine.  You just never know what might turn up.
I accessed the database and typed in my family name, expecting that none would appear since my Aunt Jeannette's arrival should be the earliest Cherryholme birth in Canada and 1920 birth records are not yet available to the public.  (Although the Drouin records are on line and they provide baptismal records as recent as 1967 -- go figure!).
What's this?

Kenneth Watson Cherryholme was born on 9 February 1913 in York (Toronto) to a single parent named Edith Cherryholme.
Hold the phone!
Edith was my grandfather's 1st cousin who also came to Canada as a British Home Child (she was a Barnardo child) in 1911.  A few years back, I had come across her record and tracked her down to having gone to the United States in 1916.  She married in 1917, had two sons, and died in 1987.  I've exchanged numerous e-mails with her granddaughter who was delighted to receive my help with information about the Home Child scheme in Canada.  I also sent her a copy of the ship's manifest listing her grandmother as a passenger on her trip to Canada.
As for Edith's having come to Canada, I have no idea if my grandfather ever knew that she was here.  We certainly never heard tell of her.  I know that as a child he must have known her very well though.  Their parents were pretty tight over in Yorkshire (their fathers were brothers).  The birth and marriage records of both family members consistently intertwined; and the cousins in England had witnessed each other's marriages. 
Back to the child that was born to Edith.
I now was intrigued to know what had happened to said child.  Edith's granddaughter had never mentioned Kenneth.  Did she even know about him?
The immigration records of Edith's travels between Canada and the USA did not appear to include the child.
Obviously, he must have died, or he was adopted out.
But I had to know where this child ended up.
A search of the Ontario Death Registry for Cherryholme deaths still only rendered the names of the people who were already in my tree.
Internet search engines are wonderfully versatilie and provide a benefit that would never be achievable by manual searching.
I asked the system to give me all the deaths for any child with given names Kenneth Watson born in 1913.
Up comes a record for a child named Kenneth Watson Hoag who had died as a result of gastroenteritis, aged 5 1/2 months, in July 1913.
Well, well, well.  Could this be him?  But what's up with HOAG as a surname I wonder?
On closer scrutiny of the record, I notice the address for the event is 624 St. Clarens Avenue, York.
Yeh, that's the same address that Edith Cherryholme, a maid, lived at when her son was born.
I can't explain the change of surname (unless the child was officially adopted) but it's more likely that Edith was employed by the Hoag family and somehow it was them, rather than her, who reported the child's death.
In any event, about an hour after I discovered the earliest birth of a Cherryholme child in Canada, I also discovered the earliest death of a Cherryholme in Canada.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

I haven't suffered a flare-up

This is absolutely amazing!
It really is.
I went away for a week, came home to an abundance of physical work that needed to be done (returning my home to its natural state after having the floors refinished), we've had company since Saturday ...
... and I haven't  had a flare-up.
Perhaps I haven't had time.
My body might decide to rise up and revolt one of these days, if I ever have time to stop perhaps.
Half of our company left yesterday, the other half has gone hunting with John today.
I have to make the round trip into the big city today for my physio session and tonight will be the first opportunity to really "stop."
We'll see what state I'm in tomorrow when everything truly has returned to normal on the home front.
I do know that I paced myself very carefully while we were away, and John was very good about helping me do that.
And since we've been home, I took things slowly while returning items to their proper homes in the household.
The "company" we had was a delight -- my stepson and his wife have parked their new trailer out back of our house and they wanted to spend some time in it.  So we had them here for a few days and it's always nice to have them around.  He helps John bring in the firewood and take care of any other labour-intensive jobs that need doing.  She helps me with whatever needs doing in the house.  (And of course we always enjoy sitting around talking while the boys are working.)
So maybe, just maybe, there won't be a flare-up.
Won't that be a bonus?

Thursday, September 15, 2011

I've been away a while

I'm sorry it's been so long since I last posted here.
We went on a holiday and while we did have the laptop with us, we weren't in the hotel long enough at any given time for me to spend it blogging.
Sorry about that.
I'll catch you up now but only ever so briefly.
On Wednesday, September 7th, we spent the day getting ready for our trip, packing etc, and I had a session with my massage therapist.  That was to get ME ready for our trip.
We left on Thursday, September 8th and as we walked out the door, our friendly neighbourhood workman was arriving to start sanding the floors.  We drove to Toronto, arriving at our good friend Bob's place just after 1:00pm which gave me lots of time to rest before the 7:00pm ball game.  My boys did a wonderful job and won for us too!
On Friday, September 9th, Bob fed us a terrific breakfast before we headed off to St. Jacob's Ontario, where we ensconced ourselves in the Best Western Plus St. Jacobs.  What a fabulous place that is.  This was not our first experience there; we like to call it our home base when we travel to that area.  As we checked in they gave us the good news that we had been given a complimentary upgrade to a king size bed, complete with fire place (John asked if it also had a bearskin rug!).  We kept a low profile on Friday, giving me lots of opportunity to rest, but we did meet up with a friend of John's and went for coffee with him.  That evening, we ate dinner at the hotel's "restaurant" and went back up to our room to watch the ball game (which we lost).
On Saturday, September 10th, after partaking of the very generous breakfast that is included with the accommodation at the Best Western, we spent the morning at St. Jacobs Farmers Market.  John was disappointed this time around.  We found that it has become somewhat more of a flea market than a farmers' market now.  I felt like I was at the Ottawa Exhibition.  All that was missing was the midway rides; it sure had that "exhibition grounds" atmosphere.  We drove around the countryside so John could take photos before going back to the hotel to watch the afternoon ball game (which we lost).  We each had a nap before we went into St. Jacobs Village to have dinner at one of the many restaurants there.
On Sunday, September 11th, we spent the morning driving around the countryside again so John could take more photos.  We stopped again in St Jacobs village where John ate lunch and I had a dessert and coffee.  We couldn't watch the ballgame on television (thanks Rogers Sportsnet One) but we did listen to it on the radio as we drove to Kitchener to visit my sister.  We arrived on time to catch the last couple of innings (we won again).  We had a wonderful meal with my sister and her entire family.  It was great to see all of them.
On Monday, September 12th, we drove to Stratford thinking there would be enough to do there to fill our time until dinner that evening (we were meeting friends at 6:00pm).  We were wrong.  John took the photos he wanted to get but we were hard pressed to find much to do and we had too much time still to kill.  So we drove the hour back to the hotel and crashed for an hour.  Then we drove the hour back to Stratford, getting caught up in crazy traffic and only just arriving with five minutes to spare for our scheduled dinner date.  We had dinner with the former MP for Stratford and the girls who worked in his constituency office (I worked in his Ottawa office).  We are all still in touch but don't see each other very often so it was great to have the opportunity to visit with them again.
On Tuesday, September 13th, we checked out of the hotel as late as we could and took the longest route possible to get to the Georgetown area, where we were meeting friends for dinner at 6:00pm.  Again, we had lots of time to kill but this time we didn't have a hotel to crash in while we waited.  So we found a park and John slept for a bit (I read).  At the appointed time, we made our way to The Keg Restaurant to have dinner with my most recent bossman's birth mother and half sister (and her husband).  We had a delightful evening.  And then we drove the hour back into Toronto to spend the night at our good friend Bob's place again (what a frightful experience that drive is!).
On Wednesday, September 14th, again Bob fed us a wondeful breakfast before we embarked on the drive home (he tried to convince us to stay another day but ...).  We arrived home at about 2:45pm and walked into the most gorgeous living quarters ever.  The floors are absolutely beautiful!  And the boys had put all the big furniture back in place (John couldn't believe it!).  All we have to do is put the small stuff back.  It'll be days before everything is back in place properly but oh it is oh so worth it!
Today, Thursday, September 15th, I have done numerous loads of laundry with still more to do.  I have gone for groceries and I've had a massage session.  The rest of the day I will spend vegging.  I've earned it.
Gotta go veg (and it's drinky-poo time, almost). 

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Cherry Angioma

Cherry angioma.
Ever heard of that?
Neither had I.
Until yesterday.  In my little chickadee's e-mail.
Subject:  "Another thing to thank you for"
Message:  "cherry angioma...that is what the red dots are called, also known as Campbell de Morgan spots. The cause is unknown but they tend to be genetic!  Oh, and you get them as you get older, usually after age 30. "
She had been admonishing me for some time about the appearance of the tiny bloodspots, many of which I have had for several years now.
I had told her that my doctor (our doctor) had given me a name for them a long time ago but I couldn't remember what he called them.  All I recalled is that he told me they were of no consequence, and that they were yet another sign of aging.
I don't recall my doctor ever mentioning that the spots had a genetic component.
My little chickadee.
She has so much for which to be genetically thankful!

Monday, September 5, 2011

The Dangers of Early Sun Exposure

John and I each had an appointment with the same dermatologist on Friday last.  That came about because my doctor had referred me to one whom I was to have seen on August 10th.  When John's doctor referred him to a specialist and couldn't get him in until some time in November, John mentioned that my doctor managed to get me in rather quickly (I had seen my doctor on June 28th).
So, John's doctor called the specialist that I was to see and managed to get both of us in on September 1st (delaying my previously booked August 10th appointment).
The reason for my referral was because I had two moles on my right hip that had caused me concern and my doctor didn't want to take any chances (my mother died of melanoma).
I had also developed a spot on my nose that was reminiscent of something my mother had experienced.  Not quite a pimple, but certainly not a mole, there was a spot on my nose that cyclically popped up and bled for several days.  And then it went away again.  I remember my mother having a similar irritant; we used to call it her period.
Anyway, back to the visit on Friday with the dermatologist.
We both went into the inner sanctum together, figuring we may as well be present for each other's examination -- it would save us telling each other what went on later.
I went first.
She very quickly dismissed the moles on my right hip as being of no concern.  Phew!
Then she checked the spot on my nose, explaining that the fact that it kept coming back was very suggestive of a cancer.
But, most likely it would be basal cell carcinoma, the "friendly cancer," as she called it. 
And she explained that it would be the result of sun exposure from when I was way too young to have known of the danger.  Given my fair skin and my colouring, I was a sitting duck for skin cancer.
I assured her she was right about my sun exposure as a child.
See the white blob on my nose in the above photo, taken on my second birthday?  Even then, my nose was seriously burned enough to need protection.
'Twas ever thus!
The dermatologist took a biopsy of my left nose.
I'm now sporting a nose minus a significant chunk, and I have to keep it protected with ointment and a bandaid  for up to two weeks.
What fun!
The results of the biopsy, which I will learn on the 29th of September, will determine the course of treatment.  The doctor has warned me to anticipate the need for surgery (worse case scenario).
John didn't get off quite as easily as I though.
His file included a biopsy report from previous treatment (he has a history of basal cell carcinoma but his previous dermatologist retired).  That report indicated that he now has squamous basal cell carcinoma which means it is a little more aggressive so he does need surgery.  It is being booked for a date post November 15th (he needs his hunting time).  Biopsies were also taken from three spots on the left side of his face, results of which we will learn on the 29th of September.
The dermatologist we saw will also do the surgery -- the procedure is called "MOHS surgery" and she is the only surgeon in Ottawa who performs it.
Again I marvel at my doctor's attention to my health care.  It was he who referred me to her.  And she is a gem!  Had I not been going to see her, John would have seen someone else.
Funny how these things happen, isn't it?

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Turning our home upside down again

Here we go!
We're about to turn our home upside down again.
But it will be oh so worth it when it's finished.
For about the past six years I've been nagging that the wood floors need to be refinished.
'Cept my lovin' husband wanted to do it his ownself (he thinks he's still 25 years old).
Of course, like everything else, the timing is just never right.
There has been reason after excuse why it couldn't be done (hunting season, too cold, too hot, hunting season, too cold, too hot ... you get the idea).
Added to the mixture was the fact that, whenever the job happened, I would have to disappear for the varathaning portion of the exercise.
Well, last week, while John and our local handy-dandy handyman sat around admiring the latest improvement around here, John made the mistake of declaring thusly:  "Well, as much as I resisted doing this, I must admit that it looks good and I'm glad we did it."  (He was referring to the landscaping that I insisted be done out back since the addition of my sanctuary.  And it IS an improvement around here.)
So, never missing an opportunity, I commented, "Yes, if only you would not be so stubborn about getting the floors done, you might find out that you'd like that job too." Or words to that effect.
Our handy dandy worker man was all over that.   "What about the floors?"
A discussion ensued about how I've wanted to have the floors redone professionally and John wants to do it his ownself yada yada yada.
I threw into the mix that the perfect time to have them done would be while we're away next week (we're finally taking our long-promised trip to SW Ontario).
Again, our handy-dandy handyman was all over that.  "John, I can do that for you while you're away."
John thought on it and decided that perhaps it would be workable.
He knows the worker.
He likes the worker.
He trusts the worker.
This is even better than hiring pros we don't know to be here when we're away.
We've now worked out the logistics (we think) of how we're going to get everything moved and out of the way (thank God for my sanctuary!) so the floors can be sanded and varathaned in our absence.
Two worker men will be here Tuesday morning to move furniture.  (In the interim, we will move all the small stuff.)  I've also arranged for the area rugs to be picked up on Tuesday so they too can be cleaned.
We leave on Thursday morning.  (Packing might be a bit of a challenge.)
The floors will be done while we're away from Thursday through to the following Wednesday.
And when we return, a worker will come back to help us put everything back together again.
Sounds like a plan to me.
Oh, and at the same time, the eavestroughing man will be here taking care of that little detail around the outside of the house. 
If we keep this up, this place is gonna look like a regular high-livin' abode.

Friday, September 2, 2011

What a day from hell I had!

Wow, yesterday was a day from hell!
It started out OK.
And it ended OK.
It was the in-between part that was horrendous.
My morning was rather uneventful as I took care of business before heading off for my first appointment of the day.  I had to go to the eye doctor for my quarterly check-in to see if we can get a handle on my ever-changing vision issue (we couldn't).
My eye doctor's assessment was that I'm definitely not seeing well, but she wasn't able to make any changes that would improve things.  Nothing she offered made any difference.  I simply am not seeing well.  We'll try again in another three months.
How comforting.  In the interim, I'll just continue not seeing well.
From there, I was going for my massage therapy.
En route to massage, I stopped in at Walmart to pick up milk -- which we needed desperately -- and a powerbar, which I also needed somewhat desperately.  (The powerbar driving the living room television and paraphernalia had died the day before so I transferred the one from my sanctuary to the more important living room, leaving me without a television in my beloved room -- can't have that!).
I was in Walmart for about five minutes, if that.
My massage therapist's clinic is less than five minutes away from Walmart.
But my car wouldn't start.
Now, it has happened in the past that the car ignored me when I first tried to start it but it always responded on second try.
Not this time though.
Didn't matter what I did, that car gave not a sign of life.
And I didn't have my massage therapist's telephone number with me to let her know that I was stuck, big time!
My first call was to my home.
Fortunately John was there and I explained my situation, telling him that I would call the auto service (I'm still covered by the new car Chrysler service).  But first I had to let Pat know that I wasn't going to be able to have my massage.  Turns out she had called to clarify our arrangement (was she coming to me or was I going to her?) so John was able to give me her number by referring to the caller ID on the phone.
My massage therapist is extremely accommodating of me and she didn't have any other appointments booked following mine, so she told me to just show up when I could (assuming that I'd have the issue resolved within the hour).
My next call was to the auto service.
And while I was on the phone with them, the girl put me on hold while she called the towing company.
That's when the real fun started.
I checked to see if the car would start remotely.
It did.
But as soon as I put the key in the ignition, the car died.
'Cept whatever I did next (removed the key from the ignition?), caused the alarm to start ringing.
And it wouldn't stop!
I kept hitting the panic button on the remote but that didn't turn off the yelling.
So when the girl came back on the line, there I was, sitting in my car, with it yelling at me, and she's trying to tell me that a tow truck would be along soon.  She explained  that the car would stop yelling in about five minutes.
Along came a Walmart employee, in obvious distress from the racket my car was making.
I opened the car door to tell her that I was having car trouble (not stealing the car) and she asked if I have a panic button.
"Yes," I said, "but it doesn't do anything."  I again hit the panic button and the car shut up.  Apparently it wanted me to open the door to turn off the alarm -- it wouldn't turn off while I was in the car with the door shut.  Lesson learned!
The girl on the other end of the phone advised me not to "try anything else" but to wait for the tow truck.
I decided to take her advice.
A few minutes later, a rep from Chrysler called me back to tell me that the tow truck would be here in five minutes.
Sure enough, within five minutes, the truck drove right in front of me, looking for my vehicle.  I jumped out and waved him down.
It took him about a nanosecond to determine that it wasn't my battery, but he couldn't do much except reach the same conclusion as I had -- my car was not recognizing my key.
"Do you have another key?" he asked.
"Yes, but at home," I replied.  "And I just tried to call my husband again, but he didn't answer."
I tried phoning home again and this time John answered.  I asked him to come right away and bring the other car key with him.
At least I had company while I waited for John to get there.
During this time, my massage therapist called to check on my progress and I brought her up to speed on the situation.  We decided that I would surely be at her clinic by 3:00pm. 
After what seemed like an interminable wait, John finally arrived.
He handed me the other key.
I inserted it in the ignition and voila!  Everything happened as it should.
Obviously, for whatever reason, my key was "dead."  Great, good thing that warranty is still in effect!  I guess a call to Chrysler is in order.
I thanked the tow truck driver for his time and off he went.
I thanked John, gave him the milk to take home, and kissed him good-bye.
And I went off to my by then much-needed massage therapy, where I arrived precisely as the clock struck 3:00pm.
As I lay on her table, I was briefly able to forget what I had just gone through.
Once I got home, I put in that call to Chrysler.
Yes, what I experienced absolutely means that my key is dead.
Yes, that's covered by the warranty.
And yes, they have some keys in stock.
Just stop by and bring the other key (ummm, can't get there unless I bring the other key -- that's the only way I can make my car go now).  They need the car and the working key to program the new key.  They'll take care of that for me right away.
I told him I'd see him next Tuesday -- when next I'm in Ottawa for physio.