Monday, October 27, 2008
Twice a month I attend an advanced cancer support group. During the last session we did a little exercise where we had to blindly pull a word from a bag and then say what that word meant to us. The word I got was abundance. I don't think I could have gotten a better word. When I think of abundance, I think of the abundance of blessings that God has showered upon me. I have been blessed with friends and family that have shown so much support...more than I expected. And I believe that me getting diagnosed and having to battle this disease is also a blessing. I may not fully understand it yet, but if the purpose is to bring me closer to God then its the biggest blessing I could get.
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Before I was diagnosed one of the things I enjoyed was cooking. I enjoyed coming up with new recipes and having others try them out. I also enjoyed the looks and "oohs" and "ahhs" of my co-workers as they try and dissect what I brought for lunch that day. Now that I am in recovery I am grateful that I can even turn around in the kitchen and put a meal together. But honestly, its like one of the least things that I enjoy doing now. When I get up I am thinking man, what will I do for breakfast. Once that ordeal is over, I have to figure out what I will eat for the rest of the day. Sometimes I am saved by my brother when they cook something that is not red meat or pork based. Then I just mooch off of them. Other days I am left with trying to find some type of sustenance here in the apartment no matter how much I am tempted (and sometimes try) to just lie down and sleep and "rest" all day. That is why I must sing the praises of quick to prepare food. Thanks to visitors I had last month, I have a bag of already cooked chicken and salmon along with Lipton sides (pasta and rice) that i have learned are very quick to prepare. I have also discovered the veggies that steam in the bag in the microwave. So in about 15min you can have a well rounded meal with minimal effort. And now a days I am all about minimal effort. So thanks to all those food companies that continue to create food to indulge in the laziness of us all. Its working for me right now!
Thursday, October 16, 2008
Today I met with my doctor to review the results of my scans/tests from last week. I have only good news to report. As you may know I have metastatic disease or you can call it advanced/terminal/stage 4 cancer. So it started in the breast and then it spread to the liver and the bones. I had a lumpectomy done to remove the tumor from my breast but by the time they discovered that it had already spread. My liver was so covered with cancer spots/tumors that there were too many to count. The tumors were also quite large. I am pleased to announce that now I have roughly 15-20 spots on the liver and they are all less than 1cm in size. That is tremendous improvement...even the doctor didn't expect to see that kind of improvement. Of course she must not realize that God is in full control of my life and he is the one that is taking care of this cancer! The cancer in the bones has remained stable so that is also good news that it is not spreading. So the course of action now is to have three more sessions of treatment, get another set of scans, and then based on those results I may be able to take a break from chemo therapy. I will still be on "maintenance" drugs but to be off of chemo therapy well allow the body to return to "normal." No more chemo side effects...can't ask for anything better than that! So come end of December I should know if I will be able to take that break. It will be a great Christmas present indeed! But the bottom line is no matter what the final outcome is, it is all up to God and his master plan for my life. No matter what I am eternally grateful to him for all he has done and what he has allowed in my life.
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
I always hear how I am so strong and that I will kick this thing. However I don't believe I am strong at all. Strong people don't need to take anxiety pills every night or be plagued by restless sleep. Strong people don't feel like rushing home to lie down after they have been out only a few hours. Strong people don't have days when they feel like doing nothing else but crying and lying around all day. Given these factors I am not strong at all. I'm just a woman that got cancer who now has to man up until it goes away. In life you never know what trials you may encounter, but you just have to deal with the deck that was handed to you and pray for God's grace and strength to get you through it. So I am not strong at all...but God is and all my strength is coming from him.
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
One of the biggest tell tale signs of having cancer is loosing your hair. One thing people don't realize is that you don't just loose the hair on your head. ALL your hair can fall out including your underarms, eyelashes and your eyebrows. You never realize how naked your face looks until you see your eyebrows disappearing. Who wants to look surprised all the time. Bald and surprised? That is too much. So here comes the fake hair. To date I have one wig and I recently got some brow shapers to start drawing in my eyebrows. Time for me to pile on the makeup and make all this "fakeness" look real. I will have to get use to the wigs though...
Monday, October 13, 2008
I survived my bone scan and cat scans. To my surprise, when I arrived at the place to take the cat scan, they gave me one bottle of "contrast" for me to drink instead of the two that they mailed me. But I think it came up to the same amount of fluid to drink. The actually tests went by very quickly, the most time was spent waiting to get to the machines. Now that a few days have passed I think all the radioactive shots that I was injected with is finally out of my system. Just glad it is all over! So I don't get the final results until I meet with the doctor this week...but I have some preliminary results: I got a call on Friday from the nurse and she informed me that my liver is improved!! I don't know by how much but I am assuming they wouldn't call to get me excited if they didn't see good improvement. Hope to get all the details from the doc this week.
Thursday, October 2, 2008
Hey guys. So I have scans scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 9th to determine what progress has been made with the chemo therapy. I will be having a CT Scan and a Bone scan. For those of you that have had a CT Scan before, you know all about the TWO BOTTLES of nasty juice you have to drink before the test. And then during the test you get injected with some kind of spicy juice that burns a little but it helps for the pictures to show up. Apparently I will also be getting some type of injection for the Bone scan as well. We will see how it goes. I am praying for a good word!!