Wednesday, June 27, 2012


First of all, I want to say a huge thank you to everyone who sent messages with words of encouragement and promises to pray.  I needed it yesterday more than you can know.  Despite the chemo, today has been a much better day emotionally.

So, chemo.  I got my own room today, suckas!  It's kind of nice to know that people aren't watching me drool while I nod off.  It was very quiet.  Nice today.  I'll get the pump off after lunch on Friday.  Very uneventful.

My plan now is to rest and knit.  I finished up some surprises and I'm now moving on to a dress for Reese.  We shall see how that turns out.  So far, so good, I think, although I never quite know until I'm finished.

If I don't pop in for a week or so, no worries.  Our family is going to do some traveling.  :)

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Scan Day

I've been at the cancer center pretty much all day.  I actually got home around 3pm and would have updated right away, but I needed some time and Eli needed some attention.  Sometimes I need a little space from results.

The results of the scan weren't terrible, but they weren't super good either.  10% growth, a couple of millimeters in some of the tumors in my lungs, which is considered within the margins of error.  The doc said he wasn't worried, but he didn't call this scan stable either.  Everyone is assuring me that it could be as simple as the person doing the measuring being a different person this time.  The plan is to keep on the same chemo and wait and see.

So it's kind of medium news.  I guess.  Honestly, I'm disappointed.  I pitched a bit of a fit in the car before leaving the cancer center.  I feel like I'm a good person, I have a nice family who needs me, and why do I have to keep going through this?  Deep down, and once I got some space, I know that this has nothing to do with how good of a person I am. 

I'm feeling really down right now.  That's not really a good mindset to go into chemo with, but what can you do?  This isn't all sunshine and roses, it's real and sometimes real is ugly.  Please pray that I can lean on God to help me straighten my head out and get ready for tomorrow.

Monday, June 25, 2012

So.  I have a scan tomorrow.  I was able to blow it off in my mind until I picked up my barium last Thursday.  Suddenly the scan becomes real when I get the barium and paperwork.  I wish I could say that I'm going into it confident, but man, I'm so not. 

How appropriate that the sermon at church yesterday was about courage. 

I've had countless people tell me I'm strong, brave, etc.  I don't feel like any of those adjectives most of the time.  Okay, really at any point in time.  I told my therapist once that I forge ahead because I have to, I don't have a choice.  I have people depending on me, and I don't have time to live life curled up in a ball under my covers.  She gently suggested that perhaps I do have a choice, that there are people who, in my situation, would hide away and not step up.  I can't imagine doing that. 

The biggest thing I took away from the sermon (hopefully this was one of the big points!!) is that courage is the strength to obey God even if I am afraid and even when it is hard.  Is persisting in taking care of my family and going to treatments obeying?  I like to think it is.  I'm here for a reason, and since I am still here, God wants me here.  Wouldn't it be really lame of me to turn tail and run away from treatments or my responsibilities? 

One of the things I did at the suggestion of my therapist was explore the definition of courage.  I decided to see what the Bible says about courage and found this:

2 Corinthians 4:16-18  So we do not lose heart.  Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day.  For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen.  For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.

There are tons of verses about courage in the Bible, which leads me to believe that I'm not alone in how I feel.  It's comforting to me that I'm not alone in this struggle.  I'm not the only person who every day asks for help and faith and trust.  I'm not the only one who needs encouragement to not lose heart.  Don't you think that's amazing? 

And with that, I face my To Do list, the great Getting Ready for Chemo.  Well, perhaps more coffee first.  :)

If you don't mind, please pray that I can have faith and courage like Rahab.  And if you don't know who she is, go get your google on.  It's a good story with a happy ending. 


Sunday, June 17, 2012

Another chemo down!

It was an uneventful chemo day, just really really long.  I didn't finish infusion until 6pm because of my schedule.  Blech. 

Not a whole lot to say about it all, I guess.  I'm tired but I can't sleep.  I don't want to do much of anything.  Hopefully I'll be feeling better tomorrow.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

But, look really good!

I don't go about announcing the fact that I have cancer when I meet new people.  First of all, I don't want people to pity me right from the get go.  Secondly, I don't like the limitations that sometimes go with a cancer diagnosis in people's minds, which then sometimes translate to our interactions.  So unless someone pretty directly asks, I just pretend I don't have cancer.  Good for me, good for them, right?

However, if someone does ask, I won't lie.  Last night, I was volunteering at church for Vacation Bible School.  I've been reminding the people in charge that I won't be there tonight, and last night one of the other volunteers, in casual conversation, "So do you have to work Thursday night?"

Ugh, here we go.

"Actually, I'm going to be at Baylor getting chemo tomorrow," me, trying to sound casual too.
Shocked face, "What?  You have cancer?  But you look really good!  You have all your hair!"

It's good to know I don't look like crap, huh, guys?  The typical questions start, what kind do you have, how long have you been getting chemo, etc.  And I don't know if it's the shock or what, but almost immediately the other volunteers aren't talking to me, and really aren't talking at all, in the same way they were.  They encouraged me to go Friday night (I'm not sure I'll feel up to it) to just hang out, which is nice.

Maybe there's a reason this particular group of people needed to hear about my cancer.  At any rate, they heard about it.  I've changed their perceptions of people with cancer, that's for sure.  I suppose it's my fault for praying that God will use me in ways that will glorify Him.  Maybe that's what is happening and I just don't see it.  I don't know.  I just want to do the right thing, you know?

Chemo day today.  Big surprise, but I wish I could run away.  Pray for me.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Freaking Out

Tuesday is the day I typically lose my shit, guys.  I look around and look at my to do list and internally I start feeling whirly.  I can't do chemo on Thursday with the house looking like it does.  There is next to no make ahead food ready.  Thank goodness the grocery shopping is done, but I spent all morning doing that (well, and a stop at a yarn store, but I have to have a little fun). 

Sigh.  I just don't feel mellow like I normally feel.  I feel all keyed up and jittery (no coffee to blame on that one).  Part of me doesn't even know where to start with my list.  Ugh.

I've talked to my therapist about this.  She suggested that I'm taking control of totally rational things (the state of the house, prepping meals, etc).  Control is hard for me.  I used to have this planned out life, I was in charge, I knew what was going on, it was all me.  With cancer in my body, I feel like so much of my life has been snatched away.  A chunk of my time has been taken every other week.  The amount of things I can do is limited at times.  What I want to be just doesn't work out when I'm on chemo.  It's hard.

I'm trying to let go.  I'm trying to trust God's plan and trust His blessings for me. 

Jeremiah 32:17  Oh Lord, you have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and your outstretched arm.  Nothing is too hard for you.

Right?  I don't think God wants me to be freaking out about chemo.  I know He wants me to rest in Him.  That is so hard for me.  For what's left of today, I'm going to try to remember that I don't have to control everything. 

Thursday, June 7, 2012

I've been trying to pay attention to when I start feeling "normal" after chemo.  Most of the time I'm so busy just making it through each day that I don't notice.  Today though, I realized that I just feel better.  I have more ambition as opposed to the last few days of wanting to knit or play Wii all day long.  Heck, I'm making my own BBQ sauce today and yesterday I had Eric starting dinner.  Stuff is getting cleaned.  It's pretty awesome.

However, this also means that it takes about a week for me to feel "normal" after chemo.  That's a drag, isn't it?  And frustrating.

In other news, I'm scheduled out until the end of July, and have a scan on June 26th.  One chemo before that though, so I probably should focus on what's close and not what's a few weeks off.  I'm really working on NOT worrying, and remembering that God has a plan and is taking care of business. 

Prayers, of course, always welcome!

Friday, June 1, 2012

Chemo Thursday!  Well, it was yesterday.  Yeah.  The doc's nurse estimated I've done something like 50 rounds of chemo total.  Could that be right?  I forgot to ask Eric last night, so perhaps he'll see this today and comment with his count.  Anyhoo, that's a lot of chemo.  I feel so blessed to have been given a body that can handle it and bounce back. 

It was a long day, starting at 8:30ish when Eric dropped me off and ending at around 5pm when he crashed the chemo lounge to find out what was taking so long.

But let's back up.  After I cried and yakked at my psychologist for a hour, I went up to have my labs drawn.  The nurse had to stick me twice!  :(  Sad face.  She apologized and also complimented me on all my tattoos, so you know.  I'm okay with it.  A quick look just now and no really bad bruising.  Then I went down to wait for the doctor.

The doc's nurse made me walk up and down the hallway to assess the neuropothy in my feet.  I walk fine, by the way.  I haven't honestly noticed a big change in the condition of my fingers and toes after last time...maybe I'm just getting used to it?  A next step for me would be to get out walking/running again.  I'll make it a goal for next week.  The doc didn't have a lot to say.  I'm getting a different heartburn med because mine stopped working suddenly.  A calcium/magnesium mix was added to my chemo regimen.  Apparently there had been a shortage, and now it's available aplenty.  It's supposed to help some with the neuropothy.  The doc approved me for chemo, so back to the waiting room!

It turns out, the cal/mag adds a little over an hour to my chemo chair time.  Ugh.  It felt like I was there forever.  It's so frustrating to see people walk in, get their chemo, and leave while I'm still sitting around.  I slept a little bit, knitted a little bit, watched Daria, ate snacks I pilfered from the refreshment room...the usual stuff. 

I wish I had some funny stories or something from yesterday.  Oh!  I did spray coffee on the desk of the check in lady!  That was embarassing.  I have a cup with a fussy lid.  Other than that, pretty uneventful.

I was exhausted last night, but woke up this morning to an Eli in my bed and I felt better.  Please pray that chemo weekend goes well and quickly.  :)