Kathleen Merryman

Email: kathleen@tacomaweekly.com

29 April 2014

What’s Right With Tacoma: The Lucky Woman’s Guide to Breast Cancer: Now it’s your turn to share your


The sun's come, and it's time to tell how some people are shining – and being shiny – as they deal with cancer.

The more I hang around chemotherapy infusion suites, the more I learn from the people in the comfy recliners nearby. They are fighting a horrifying array of cancers with grace, plus surprising…

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23 April 2014

What’s Right with Tacoma: The Lucky Woman’s Guide to Breast Cancer: Neutropenia Edition


In Chemo World, numbers are the lifeguards. They're swimming in your blood, hanging on your breath, soaking up info, ready to haul you in when you're going down. And a good thing, too, because without numbers, you won't know how much trouble you're in.

Welcome to The Lucky Woman's Guide to Breast Cancer,…

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2 April 2014

What’s Right with Tacoma: The Lucky Woman’s Guide to Breast Cancer Chemical Warfare Calendar Edition

Keep a chemo calendar, my husband told me. Log your treatments, he said, and every day, note how you feel. That way, he said, we'll get the pattern of how the drugs hit my body. We'll be able to predict how I'll feel. We'll have a sense of what I can eat, when I have the energy to write, and when we can try a walk.

It's…

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26 March 2014

What’s Right With Tacoma: The Lucky Woman’s Guide to Breast Cancer: Sea Turtle and Mountain Edition


The turtles are my buddies.

I admired the green sea turtles, the honu, who graze around the edges of Kauai, long before I got cancer. Ancient and new, they don't much mind sharing a wave with us at Brennecke Beach. Grazing on seaweed in the rocks at Spouting Horn, they have no clue that we come to watch…

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19 March 2014

What’s Right With Tacoma: The Lucky Woman’s Guide to Breast Cancer, Chemo Prep Edition


Attitude, everyone says, is the homemade asset that can haul you through your cancer fight. With the right attitude, you can bad-ass your way into chemotherapy, then ride the momentum through the worst of it.

Welcome to The Lucky Woman's Guide to Breast Cancer, Chemo Prep Edition.

It took a while…

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12 March 2014

What’s Right With Tacoma: It takes a village to conquer cancer


Cancer pros want you to bring two things to every important appointment: A notebook and an advocate.

No problem, my husband and I thought. We are reporters. We ask lots of questions. We carry notebooks the way trees carry leaves.

The notebook buddy plan worked all through the scary introduction,…

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26 February 2014

What’s Right with Tacoma: The Lucky Woman’s Guide to Breast Cancer: Surgery Edition

My right boob is such a diva.

It gets to sleep next to my husband. The left boob gets the bedside lamp. The left boob toughed out needle biopsies of benign fibroids, and all it did was whimper a few times and bruise some. The right boob got one biopsy alerting us to a cancerous tumor the size of a Brazil nut and it…

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19 February 2014

What’s Right with Tacoma: WE NEED YOU!


I have met the machines, and they have made me love them.

Mammograms, ultrasounds, an MRI, a PET scan and heart scans – and the people who conduct them – located the lump I didn't notice. They searched out cancerous lymph nodes. They located the outlier cells building up for an attack behind my breastbone.

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12 February 2014

What’s Right With Tacoma: Hearing, then telling


Cancer is the news no one is quite prepared to get. It demands a reaction for which most of us have no reference point. All of a sudden, we're sloshing around in information, family stories and preconceptions that may or may not have anything to do with what we'll be fighting.

Most of us do resolve, in…

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11 February 2014

CHURCH FIRE

In what appears to be a second arson, fire consumed what remained of Golgotha Baptist Church in Midland on Monday morning.

Tony Houser was the first to notice smoke coming from the church at 1611 E. 85th St., at the intersection of Portland Avenue and 85th Street East. He called 9-1-1 at 9:45 a.m. then noticed a man…

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10 February 2014

Golgotha Baptist Church stricken again by fire

In what appears to be a second arson, fire consumed what remained of Golgotha Baptist Church in Midland on Monday morning.

Tony Houser was the first to notice smoke coming from the church at 1611 E. 85th St., at the intersection of Portland Avenue and 85th Street East. He called 9-1-1 at 9:45 a.m. then noticed a man…

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28 January 2014

What’s Right With Tacoma: Welcome to the Lucky Woman’s Blast Cancer Stories

I'll be cutting back on work for a while, and we decided you deserve an explanation: I'm the luckiest person with breast cancer you know.

This poor, weak cancer of the stage 2 B ductal invasive type is doomed. One wonders why it even bothered, given the scores of smart, skilled, kind people arrayed against it with…

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22 January 2014

What’s Right With Tacoma: Seven Spark Grants will bolster community strengths

Each round of Spark Grants makes me want to switch the words around in the Greater Tacoma Community Foundation's name.

Greater Community. Community Foundation. Tacoma, Greater.

The grants are a genius idea, funded in part by George Russell's One Nation.

They're comparatively small – $1,500. They're…

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15 January 2014

What’s Right With Tacoma: Kauai, we love you like a mango

Had you gone to any pool at any resort on Kauai last month, it's a fair bet you would have found a Washingtonian there.

“You people are everywhere,” one Midwesterner told me in the hot tub at Kapaa Shores around Christmas a couple months ago.

That begged the question: “Why aren't you people everywhere…

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16 December 2013

What’s Right With Tacoma: SHOP WITH A COP

Eight years ago, a Tacoma elementary school student was heading for trouble, with a stop at a crummy Christmas along the way. The school counselor was worried. The kid needed a boost, and someone to look up to, someone to prove to him that he was a valued member of the community.

A Tacoma police officer stepped up.

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10 December 2013

Biot Sister City floats bubble with excitement for exchanges

The Museum of Glass is floating a new plan to support Tacoma's Sister City relationship with Biot, in the warm and sunny south of France.

The hot shop crew, led by Ben Cobb and Sarah Gilbert, is making floats – bubbly, Medieval glass floats.

They're selling them to raise money to send young Tacoma glass artists…

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4 December 2013

What’s Right With Tacoma: Etta Projects Christmas trees bring water, power to Bolivian town

If Etta Turner were assigned a spot on a Christmas tree, it's unlikely she'd be the angel. She'd be the elf climbing around the branches, wreaking sly havoc with sophisticated designs. She was that kind of kid, the teen who harnessed all her friends into volunteering for some great project, then cracked them up until they…

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26 November 2013

What’s Right With Tacoma: Point Defiance plugs in the magic of Zoolights

The Mountain has moved, and had a glacier upgrade.

The eagles have discovered a new salmon-bearing stream.

The polar bears have been pushing the Narrows Bridges around again, and the rainbow is somewhere over there.

Zoolights is back for its 26th perspective-shifting year.

As the hemisphere tilts…

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