I've had several people ask me how my wife Jenny is doing since we found out she had breast cancer back in December, so here goes:
Jenny had 8 treatments of chemotherapy, each one 2 weeks apart, between December and March. The first 4 treatments caused a great deal of tiredness and weakness, and change in appetite to a lesser degree, especially during the first week. The last 4 treatments were a different drug and caused significant bone pain and some numbness, and the pains seemed to accumulate and get worse each time. These 16 weeks were definitely not very pleasant for Jenny, but they also weren't as bad as the chemotherapy required for some other types of cancer we've known people to have. Then, after recovering from the chemo, Jenny went in to the local hospital last week, April 19, for her first surgery, and she came home two days later on April 21. She was definitely in an awful lot of pain, and unable to do much of anything for a while, but she is doing very well now, with just a little pain left at this point. Most basic things she can also do now, although she won't be able to do much lifting for some time -- and she still can't sleep in bed or a solid night in the recliner. Next up, in a few weeks, will be radiation, which is expected to be every weekday for 5-6 weeks, which will be an annoying way to spend an hour or two every day when you consider the drive back and forth too. Finally, later this year Jenny will finish up with another surgery or two for reconstruction, and then yet another recovery of course after that.
Of course all I've told you so far is the technical details -- but hey, what do you expect from a technical guy. :) First, we were very blessed that we bought and moved into our new house, and sold our old house, before all this happened, since things would have been very different if the timing had been reversed. Its also been great that I've been working from home with a mostly flexible schedule and a very understanding client, since I've been able to be there for Jenny at every point. That alone I think has made things much easier and therefore made this a very doable experience for Jenny, even though its certainly not been a pleasant experience in any way. On the down side though, this does pretty much make you put your whole life on hold for a whole year, and that means no vacations, and not much of anything else. Its also difficult with two young kids, since they still depend on us for everything, and since they are both involved in several extra-curricular activities too. On another positive note, everyone has been very supportive -- family, friends, and even complete acquaintances -- its actually quite amazing how people go out of their way to help. So while things are hard at times, and our lives have been put on hold, we're still doing well in many ways, and we expect Jenny to have a long life ahead when this is all over.
By the way, I downloaded and installed Beta 2 of VS 2005 the weekend it came out, right before Jenny's hospital stay. That means that I was able to spend a lot of time working on extending my O/R Mapper instead of just fretting and worrying. So right now I have a Beta of v4.0 of my O/R Mapper out there which supports .NET v2.0 Generics and Nullables, as well as having a few other new features! I've also been getting ready to give a presentation on O/R Mapping at the upcoming Atlanta CodeCamp, which will necessarily feature NHibernate due to the credo requiring only free code. So stay tuned for a couple of posts in the coming weeks that will feature some of what I've experienced.
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I've been asked to add a wiki to my sites to enable collaboration -- sounds like a great idea. I have downloaded and played around a little with FlexWiki -- but I have one issue. Is there any way to make it readable to anonymous users and editable only by authenticated users? I've seen others asking this question also, but the suggested web.config solutions completely lockout anonymous users from viewing. I'd appreciate any options, even if its another wiki solution since I see nothing special about FlexWiki. Note that my users are in a MS Sql database and already authenticated in my main ASP.NET app -- so whatever I do should ideally work with my current users. Thanks.
I made it to the Atlanta C# User Group tonight -- it was a very nice meeting. Keith Rome discussed asynchronous programming -- great job on locks and events. I also got to catch up with a few buddies I used to work with -- Jerry Dennany and Clark Allen. Of course I also got to say hi to everyone else -- I won't name others since I'll miss some no matter what. Finally, I loved the new Alpharetta offices of Microsoft (its less than 30 minutes from my home), although I'm not sure why I had to buzz security to get out of the complex since I was obviously already in.