Friday, December 14, 2012

I feel like I am such a drag but seriously this has possibly been the worst year of my life.  First early in the year I lost a dear sweet cousin and the day that she died I got results back from a biopsy that said that I have rectal cancer.  I finished up my first round of chemo and the radiation treatments that came with the first round.  About 5 weeks into the treatment I got very ill and had to be hospitalized.  I really thought it was the end because I have never been so sick.  But thankfully God gave me good news after that the tumor was gone and I did not have to have surgery.  I am still having to finish up with another round of chemo.  But then the Saturday after Thanksgiving this year my dad found my 20 year old niece on the floor of her bedroom dead.  It has been such a shock for my family and we have all been so heart broken.  Because she was so young she had to be sent for an autopsy so we had to go from Saturday to the following Friday before we could bury her.  On the Monday after she passed we called a lawyer to help us with guardianship of her 5 year old son but the lawyer said that his father had already petitioned for custody.  So the Tuesday before we buried my niece we were in court for a decision about her son.  He was pulled from my parent's home where he had lived for the last 4 years of his life and place with his father.  No child support of any significance had ever been paid by him but my niece had wanted him to be a part of the little boy's life and so had allowed him to visit every other Saturday.  So since there are no grandparent rights he was pulled from the only home he had known for 4 years and place in the home with his father and a step-mother of only about 6 months.  Apparently there will not be much that we can do about this.  He says that my parent's home is his home.  So yes it has been a long hard year.  I pray that God will watch over this little boy.  Help him deal with this and not be destroyed by it.  And I pray that he will remain with my family that we can still have some visitation with him and that God will guides us to help him with this transition in his life.  If you read my post...please please send up a prayer for him and for our family as well.

Ok, so this is the end of my gloom and doom post and let me end with something that I hope is a bit more positive.  I was able to get my home decorated before Thanksgiving and I'll share my picture here for you. 


Tuesday, November 6, 2012

I started the 2nd of 8 treatments today.  Today was a really tough day.  Not because of any pain or getting sick.  But because going for these treatments are kind of like being pushed through like cattle to slaughter.  Not that the nurses and doctors are unkind because they are really great and all have a positive upbeat outlook.  But with the nature of how this is done all of these people with cancer diagnosis are all there in rooms together.  Everyone in the waiting area or who are in the treatment area has either a diagnosis of cancer or a family member with one.  And their stories can be very heart wrenching.

One of the ladies I spoke with in the waiting area is two years into her breast care treatments.  She lost her mother to breast cancer and one of her daughters is also in treatment.  In addition they found a skin cancer on her husband and they did surgery which involved removing and replacing his ear and taking out a saliva gland, and later they found lung cancer, and later another cancer but I can't remember now which organ she was saying but that later spread to his lung and was of different origin to his other lung cancer.  On top of all that he also has Alzheimer's.  She said it has just become a lifelong battle.  She had a wonderful personality and outlook but my heart just went out to her.

While in the treatment area there was a 76 year old man and he had a friend there visiting with him during his treatment.  Sounded like one of his old running buddies or maybe a brother.  They were talking about when they were younger.  Things they got into together.  Talking about girls they had met or dated.  Made me smile.  But at one point he looked up like he was looking far away and said "I never thought my life would come to this."  Just broke my heart.

So, yes, today was a very tough day.  The treatments keep me up all night the first night.  Not sure why but it has happened to me for the both the first and second treatment and it was one of the side effects they advised me about.  Then I get sick with lose stools about the third or fourth day.  Otherwise physically I am holding up pretty good right now.

Spiritually I have been holding up pretty good too.  I had a wonderful report and had my surgery canceled back in August/September because I did so well with my first rounds of chemo and radiation.

I've kept a very positive attitude about this from the very beginning.  I know that I have not been promised to live on this earth for eternity.  We know as soon as we are faced with our first death on this earth that we are all headed to the same.  And my thoughts have been that if this is my time then it is my time and I have been blessed to know that it could be sooner than any of us had thought.  And I have faith in a promise from Jesus and faith that he will not fail me.  But when I go for these treatments and I hear these stories it is just really hard on me.  I've believed from the beginning this would be cured.  That the doctor's would follow me for 5 years and that would be the end of it.  But talking with these other individuals and their battles it makes me wonder if this won't be a lifelong battle for me.  Always having to look over my shoulder to see if this evil villain will be lurking somewhere behind me ready to attack again.  I know I have to take one day at a time and keep my faith.  I pray, not just myself but others, for healing and strength. 

My whole role in life always involved helping others.  I've always been the one that runs around trying to prepare for the storm and been the calm in the eye of the storm when it hits.  I can remember taking care of things even as a small child.  I moved in with an elderly lady for a summer when I was 12 to help care for her and stayed with my grandmother and helped care for her when I was 15.  We watch TV and so many of us have modeled our lives after shows.  Houses are nicer than they were when I was growing up.  Things are cleaner.  I am thinking of shows like Mary Tyler Moore, squeaky clean shows but they rarely show the messy side of life.  But I learned early there was no shame in the messy side but someone has to deal with that and clean it up.  Whether it is cleaning up after someone being sick or cleaning a bed pan I've done that and it never bothered me.  So it has always been a part of who I am.  That role has begun to change for me.  So I am learning to have to accept that.

My grandmother is the one that taught me there is no shame in being a caregiver.  The one the cleans up messes.  I'm missing her terribly tonight.  She was a my rock.  She is the one that taught me about the love of Jesus through her actions.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Well here it is the end of September.  As you can see I'm not a good blogger.  Kind of a hit and miss gal.  A lot has happened since my last post.  The washroom never got turned into the craft room I wanted so bad.  My daughter had a bakery that she closed up so her stuff go move in instead.

It has been a wild and crazy year for me.  Actually started having some health issues two years ago when I was diagnosed with kidney cancer.  It was a small tumor they were able to freeze and I was doing pretty good until April when I started having some bleeding in my stool so went for a test and they found rectal cancer with polyps up and down my colon and a carpet of polyps where the colon connects to the small intestine.  I was started on chemo F-5 and radiation.  In June I got really sick with what I believe was a urinary tract infection and landed in the hospital for a few days just a week before I finished up my treatments.  The doctors were able to get me well and I went back and finished up my last week of treatments.

I was scheduled for surgery the middle of September but had an appointment to visit with my doctor the Friday before I was scheduled for surgery on the following Wednesday.  He was showing me where he was going to be cutting and rerouting my colon.  When he finished I asked him what about the carpet of polyps that were at the top and he said he was glad I had ask about it because he was concentrating so on getting the mass out her almost forgot but that we needed to do them both at the same time.  I also told him that the diagnostic doctor had also said there were polyps all up and down the colon and that he had tatooed the places that he wanted the surgeon to check out.  With this my doctor said that maybe we should just do another colonoscopy so he could make sure that he got everything that he needed to get so it was scheduled for the Tuesday before the surgery.  When he got in there the tumor was gone.  All that was left was the scar and the surgery was cancelled.  I haven't gotten to go back to find out what my treatment plan is going to be yet.  I am just grateful to God that it is gone.

I cannot tell you how many people were praying for me but it was a lot.  People from my hometown, people I work with, cousins, friends and friends of friends and all of their church families.  Including some from other states.  I can honestly say that I felt God work.  And that I learned something about my faith.  I've known that Jesus is my Savior and I trust in that.  But I have always been a worrier, especially about my finances.  But during this time I found that God does provide us with what we need.  It may not be more than that but he does provide what we need and he does answer prayers.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Pinterest is Where We Go

Pinterest is where we go to plan imaginary weddings, dress children we don't have, and decorate homes we can't afford.  That maybe somewhat true.  But I have to say it is quite inspirational for me.  I have worked today on my washroom.  I am bound and determined that I will get it cleaned up, organized, and creat my special place for my crafting and sewing.  And I actually think that I may be able to do it all on a budget.

 I have a six drawer chest out in my shed that I plan to pull into my home and paint to start storing my stuff in.  I will build shelves from cardboard boxes for storage to go on top of that.  I also have a desk that I can pull in from the dining room (this will also give me some much needed space in that room as well).  And I will put my sewing machine on top of the desk.

Today I got started and it has been a real chore since that room is as large as about any other room in the house and has played catch all since I moved in 10 years ago.  But I got a tall cabinet moved from one corn to another and all organized for starters.  It is probably going to take me months to get it all the way I want it and right now the wall that I plan to move this all too has exercise equipment and a large box ready to go to a yard sale.

So...all in all I'm off to a good start I think.  And back off to Pinterest for more inspiration.