Saturday, December 29, 2012
A friend told me that I needed to write it down for the benefit of my children. So I secretly began making a book, writing down my story, using the same structure that I did for my talk at camp, and adding pictures. Knowing that I was also going to give this book to all of my siblings as well as my children I couldn't wait for Christmas when they would all be able to see it.
I had a wonderful Christmas and everyone was home...except Ian. We got to Skype with him and he looked good and it was fun to see him.
We went ice skating, made cookies, went Christmas caroling, went to see A Christmas Carol, the play, Le Miserables, the botanical garden lights, played games, ate till we were stuffed, went shopping together. Corey brought his girlfriend home for Christmas and we enjoyed getting to know her. It was all very nice. Everyone loved the book. It is now available to purchase on blurb.com for all my friends and family who may want a copy. You can see a preview of just a few pages by clicking on the blurb badge at the side of this blog.
One day before Christmas, I wasn't feeling well at all. It was most definitely cancer related and I felt horrible. I have been feeling so good, for several months, it was easy to forget at times what is going on. Having that day was a reality check and made me even more thankful that I feel so good. I can handle being sick if I don't feel sick.
They're calling my numbers stable. They are now at 305. Next month is my CT scan. I will also be getting my first PET scan. I have been having pain in my tailbone for months and it's not getting better so they decided to run a PET scan. We'll see how that goes.
Very soon we say good-bye to 2012, a year that will forever be etched in my brain. I am happy to begin a new year but remain grateful for the blessings of love and friendship that have poured over me and my family this past year.
Sunday, November 25, 2012
I feel this would be an especially appropriate time to give thanks for all my blessings. Though I cannot begin to number them, I would like to express my gratitude for some of them.
I am grateful to have had the opportunity to spend this past Thanksgiving with most of my family. Most everyone was there and those that weren't were missed.
I am grateful for my siblings who have expressed their love for me through words and actions and who I know I can count on for anything. I am grateful for their spouses and all of my nieces and nephews who I wish I knew better.
I am grateful for the efforts of those who are mending fences. I am grateful for forgiveness and repentance and the opportunity we have to let go of the past and be free to feel joy and begin anew.
I am grateful for a caring husband and that I don't have to do this alone. I am grateful for wonderful children who I am proud of and who fill me with joy.
I am deeply grateful to be surrounded by friends who I know I can count on and who continually lift me and support me, challenge me, and comfort me.
I am grateful for far away friends and their love and support and the memories we share.
I am grateful for the challenges I've faced which have caused me to learn and to grow. They truly have been a gift.
I am grateful for my house and the fulfillment I receive in making it a home. I am grateful for my husband's job and for his support which has allowed me to stay at home to raise our children.
I am grateful for doctors and nurses and research which allows me to feel so good under these circumstances and which allow me the time to plan and to prepare.
I am grateful for my knowledge of where I have come from and why I am here and where I am going after this life.
Although I still feel fear at times, I am grateful to be able to feel peace in a world that is falling apart.
I am grateful to know that a loving Heavenly Father watches over us and wants to bless us.
I rejoice in my blessings and want nothing more than to please my Father in heaven who has blessed me so abundantly.
Friday, November 2, 2012
I've tried several times to respond to your comments and for some reason I can't, but I want all of you to know that I read and appreciate each of your comments. I am thankful to have the support of amazing and wonderful friends in my life.
Tuesday, October 23, 2012
Those who are around me know that I feel great! I have had this burst of energy and I feel like my old self. I have been busy, busy, busy taking advantage of every minute that I feel good. I thought I would share some of the things that I have been doing in the past few weeks.
I love making quilts but when it comes to quilting by machine I get a little intimidated. So I have accumulated a bunch of quilt tops over the years and I decided that I need to get them all quilted. I went and got backing material and batting and prepared them all for quilting. Here are pictures of ones I have completed in the last several weeks...and there are more to come!
I got side tracked when Eddie decided to get new furniture. When the furniture came I started redecorating and it snowballed and I ended up moving the piano to the front room. I always wanted it in there but the reason I didn't have it in there is because we had two very large leather chairs that ate up the whole room and there was no room left for the piano. So we sold the chairs and moved the piano in but it still didn't look right. So I removed one of the built-in book shelves, patched up the wall, painted and then decided that piano looked worn and beat up so I painted that too! :)
So there you go. Now you know what I have been up to.
Thursday, September 20, 2012
Also, for the first time since starting chemo my numbers have gone up instead of down. They are at 213. It's still a far cry from where I started and could just be a little hiccup. We'll see. I have one more round of chemo in three weeks before I have another CT scan at the end of October.
Monday, August 27, 2012
Monday, August 13, 2012
My oldest brother is 57 years old. He had a colonoscopy 7 years ago and wasn't due for another one for 3 more years. When his wife went in to see her doctor she scheduled a colonoscopy for herself. She mentioned my situation and the doctor became alarmed. He told my brother to schedule a colonoscopy right away.
He had his colonoscopy and called to tell me that they found 4 polyps. 3 came back negative and 1 came back pre-cancerous! I am so happy they found it before it became a problem.
Because now there is a family history and a personal history for him he needs to go in every three years.
There was really no way for me to catch mine early since screening for it doesn't start until your 50.
They estimated that my cancer has been growing for about 8 years. Starting at about age 36. I had NO symptoms until this past year and even they were pretty vague.
If my experience can make others aware and help to prevent cancer in someone else I am truly happy. It brings me great joy to know that it has helped my own brother.
Tuesday, August 7, 2012
Friday, August 3, 2012
Monday, July 16, 2012
More good news...my cancer markers are now down to 254! Yay! I am feeling really good. Like my old self.
I need to get some excercise though. I started going to the Y for water aerobics. I'm in the advanced class. Don't get all excited and think I'm such a trooper, they're all advanced... in age. ;)
I may be starting out slow but it does feel good to work those muscles and I fully intend to work up to more and more. I would LOVE to be able to run again.
Prayer. When life gets too hard to stand...kneel.
Thursday, July 5, 2012
I am currently enjoying a visit from my brother and his family. Unfortunately, my feet started hurting the day they arrived so we can't go do much of anything because I need to stay off of my feet. Sorry, guys.
But I'm glad I can enjoy the blessing of family and feeling good.
Tuesday, June 26, 2012
I'm happy to let you know that I feel good. I am quilting again and working on various small projects. I still have not developed the ability to pace myself so I tend to wear myself out quickly but I do feel good other than getting really tired rather quickly. My cancer marker continues to drop, it is now at 560.
The first round of oral chemotherapy was interesting. At first I could not keep my balance which is not even a side effect of this pill. I experienced a mild case of the hand foot syndrome and so my dose has been adjusted beginning with this round which began yesterday.
I am looking forward to going with the young women in our ward this week on their high adventure. We will be white water rafting! So excited!
Thursday, June 14, 2012
Wednesday, May 30, 2012
Then we browsed through some stores and had fun window shopping...wishing money was no object.
The results of the CT scan showed that all tumors are smaller and nothing new has cropped up. Good news!
My cancer marker is now 877! Again, that's down from 16,000 and just last month 1400!
So chemotherapy is working! The Doc gave me a couple of choices. I could continue on chemo as we have been doing or I could go on the chemo pill. The downside of going on the pill is that he doesn't know what dosage will be right for me so we need to start and then tweak it til we get it right. But I chose the pill anyway. Once it's tweaked just right it sounds easier. I still have to go in every three weeks for some kind of infusion...sorry I can't remember what but it's just a small part. And every 2 months I go in for another CT scan.
With all the love and prayers being sent in our behalf it's no wonder the cancer is running scared. I do not feel alone in this battle. I can feel so many warriors standing behind me and beside me in support.
Thank you to all of you for your love, support and prayers. I am glad to have the love of family and friends through all of this.
Ultimately it is not what the doctors say and it is not what we want for ourselves but it is in God's hands and I put my trust in Him.
Tuesday, May 22, 2012
The latest numbers have me down to 1400! And I'm on my second round of chemo since then. So they are possibly even lower than that by now. As a reminder Cancer Markers are found in the blood and tells them how much cancer is in me. My origanl number was 16,000.
I started my 8th round of chemo yesterday and will finish it on Wed. It's always a little nerve racking waiting to see which side effects will effect me this time and how severe will they be. I hope it's a good week. I have Corey home for a visit and I would like to feel good enough to run around and have fun with him and the rest of the family. Here's hoping for a good week. Then I have a CT scan next Wed and one last round of chemo after that! Yay!
Sunday, May 13, 2012
I am still grateful for all the little things that come into my life to make it easy to keep going. This mother's day was the best. I spoke to all of my children including my missionary. It was wonderful! I loved listening as they talked and laughed with each other. My kids really do love each other! :))) I love watching them develop into capable, confident adults and enjoy each other's company. This makes me very happy.
Thank you to my family for the best Mother's Day ever!
Saturday, April 21, 2012
(which also happens to be my wedding anniversary)
Mom was having pains in her shoulder and side.
She laid down and had trouble breathing.
By this time Garrett and I were in Seattle celebrating
and had no idea what Mom was going through.
My dad checked in with her.
After calling the nurses and checking with the doctors,
they told her to go to the emergency room.
My dad drove her.
Everything turned out to be alright.
No blood clots, infection or anything they were worried about.
The doctor there said it is probably just
pains from a dying tumor.
When we got home from Seattle,
Jason updated us on where our parents were and
how Mom had been feeling all day.
They did not come home until around 1:00am.
This, to me, was a little taste of what it will be like
to be living far away.
I won't know right away how Mom is,
I won't be able to help her.
I will feel helpless.
Even though everything turned out to be more than ok,
I couldn't help but think about "what ifs" and "whens."
Like, what if Mom needs help when I'm in Charlotte.
I'm so glad it was pains from a dying tumor.
and not a new one.
|View from the waiting room.|
|View down from the waiting room.|
|Walking, outside of SCCA|
|Dad and I went with her this time and this was our view from her room.|
Monday, April 9, 2012
Her cancer counters went from 16,000 to 3,600.
We are currently in the waiting room for her next chemotherapy....
Friday, April 6, 2012
She has also been coughing more lately.
They called her in for the CT scan, which was about 3 minutes. Then I could sit with her for the 20 minutes they kept an eye on her in case of any reactions to the liquid she may have. They gave her a treat and a warm blanket. I was cold too so...
Monday, March 26, 2012
The side effects that happen every time in the beginning are going on. Cold sensitivity-I can't drink or touch anything cold for several days. Facial pain when I bite into something-it lasts only a few seconds but is not very pleasant. I'm starting to have vision problems. I don't know if it's strictly the chemo or my RP or a combination of both. I'll have to see if my eye specialist will talk to my oncologist to see if there is anything that can be done. Sometimes when I rub my eyes or sometimes randomly my vision will narrow to a tunnel vision view with everything blackened but a small narrowed view of what I'm looking at. It only lasts a few moments.
But the good news is my cancer marker has dropped to now 4000 from the original 16000 which means I am responding to treatments! I think that is an amazing drop after only 3 treatments. I am feeling better, stonger, and more in the mood to start back into some small projects. This is good. I am thankful.
Saturday, March 24, 2012
Wednesday, March 14, 2012
|Uncle Lee with Mom|
|Uncle Dan with Mom|
|Us with Uncle Dale, Uncle Tom, Aunt Angela and Uncle John|
counters that represent how much cancer is in her.
The doctor called today to say it is now down to 6,000!
Monday, March 5, 2012
Mom's second round of chemo went a lot better than the first. She still had an ER trip though. This time it was because of chest pain. Cancer patients can develop blood clots easier so with the chest pain we were told to go in and have it checked out.
Thankfully, everything turned out just fine.
Mom was able to keep food down and had good energy. (She still gets tired a lot, but she found herself doing more things this time) She did not feel nauseous at all either! It was a really good week...especially compared to her first week on chemo.
Her first week she was very sick and nauseous and just all around uncomfortable. She had fevers which could lead to infection so we would go to the ER to have that checked out. She always turned out to be ok. Just long nights at the hospital. She could not keep anything down and had to get rehydrated through an IV. Not easy at all, but she leveled out and made it through.
Thank you for all of your prayers! We are definitely feeling them.
Wednesday, February 29, 2012
is welcomed and appreciated.
Monday, February 27, 2012
Wednesday, February 22, 2012
I continue to be overwhelmed by the thoughtful acts of service performed by friends and family and even strangers. I definately do not feel like I'm in this alone. Thank you to everyone who has brought in a meal, come to clean my house, dropped off surprise goodies, sent notes of love and encouragement, and continues to pray for me and my family. I feel so loved.
"Can you see the holiness in those things you take for granted - a paved road or a washing machine? If you concentrate on finding what is good in every situation, you will discover that your life will suddenly be filled with gratitude, a feeling that nurtures the soul."
- Rabbi Harold Kushner"
Tuesday, February 14, 2012
Thank you for the thoughtful Valentine gifts Mom received today. It is her second day of chemo and she is feeling a lot worse than yesterday. They were much appreciated pick me ups! She spent most of the day in bed. We are so grateful for wonderful friends who have been so supportive and loving through all this.
Happy Valentines Day!
Monday, February 13, 2012
On Friday night we went to the emergency room again. Mom hadn't been feeling good. She had a headache and fever. She also felt nauseous. We were worried her port had gotten infected since it had gotten a little wet earlier. Her blood pressure was the highest its been. 181/101. The doctor we called said to get her blood drawn to see if it was an infection so we decided to go yo the emergency room in Monroe. After a really long wait they were able to help her. Things went back to normal and there was thankfully no infection.
Mom starts chemo today 8am! Glad to get it started...we will soon see how she reacts to it.
Special thanks to the girls who came over yesterday to bring her a chemo basket! So sweet and thoughtful.
Friday, February 10, 2012
Wednesday, February 8, 2012
|Almost to the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance|
|Beautiful view from the waiting room|
I go in on Thursday to have a "port" put in which provides a simple and relatively painless (I hope) method to administer chemotherapy drugs.
Monday I begin chemotherapy. I will be there a large part of the day to get chemo and then go home with a pump that will continue to give me chemo over the next couple of days. Then a nurse will come "unhook" me, take her pump and I will continue this process every other Monday for a couple of months. Then I will have a CT scan to see how I am responding.
The good news is the doctor doesn't think I will lose my hair! I guess I didn't need to get this haircut afterall but it sure is a LOT easier to do! Of course I wonder how sure he can be that I won't lose hair so I'm prepared for either way.
Saturday, February 4, 2012
was nice enough to re-cut it for her.
She has good days and bad days so we're lucky it was a good day.
which we totally scored!
We headed to subway for lunch.
This was our view.