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Posts Tagged ‘friends’

In a word….I’m REALLY GOOD!!  (ok that was 2 words…..LOL)

It has been so fun to celebrate, not only the completion of my treatment, but also, getting back to “normal”.  I’ve had some wonderful friends who have treated me to some wonderful meals and lots of laughter.

As I’ve been looking back, I realized that my yearly mammogram was Sept. 6, a 2nd mammogram 2 weeks later followed by the biopsy and finally the diagnoses of breast cancer on September 28.  After that was surgery, and finally treatment.  Everything happened in a matter of 4.5 months…..18 weeks.  WOW!!!  No wonder my life felt like a whirlwind!  At times I was really impatient….wanting Doctors to hurry things along….wishing the healing was faster.  My good friend, Jayma, a colon cancer survivor, kept telling me it would all happen at the right time.  She was SO right…and I’m thankful she was there to remind me…often.

The last week and a half of treatment was rather brutal.  I ended up at home and in bed for 6 days.  And I’m thankful that my Mom could stay with me for a few days.  I couldn’t have made it without her.

It’s been 2 weeks (and 2 days….to be exact) since my last treatment and I’m happy to say that I feel REALLY GOOD!  All the burns have healed over.  The skin is still healing but I can wear clothes and don’t have to use the stinky salve anymore!  I’m beginning to be myself at school again.  Even my students have noticed!  My sense of humor is returning….just ask my 7th grade girls choir…..who taught me how to “Dougie” yesterday.  I was pretty bad but we all had a good laugh and that felt sooooooo good!!!!

I’ve started my “boot camp” workout again….sort of.  My friend, Steve, who is my trainer, is only allowing me to walk.  The first time we met (last Friday) I tried to convince him to let me do a bit more than walk…..he refused.  So I agreed to “just walk” for 20 minutes.  By the time we finished I was literally dragging my feet.  I hated to admit that he was right.  He’s been very protective of me…and I appreciate it.  I’m following his instructions and I’m feeling stronger each week.  Maybe by the end of the February I can start lifting weights again!

I feels wonderful to regain my strength, both physically and mentally!!!

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Time to Celebrate…Come On!

Friday, after school, my school family had a celebration for me and another teacher who finished her cancer treatments this week also.  What a surprise!!!!

They gave each of us a basket with all sorts of goodies inside!

 

I didn’t look at anything until I got home…..I was just overwhelmed….

 

It seemed to be an never-ending basket of love!

There was….candy, snacks, YARN, coasters, embroidered visor and ‘certificate’, mugs, gift cards, lotions, bath gels, candle, cards, journals, devotional book……WOW!!!

 

I think what I like most is that I have no idea who gave me what….It’s just a big hug in the shape of a basket of goodies!  It was fun seeing some of the things in the basket and knowing that someone who knows me well, gave me this!

I have the most AMAZING school family and I’m very thankful for their love and support!

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Just a glimmer….

I’m beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel.  I started radiation treatments on Tuesday.  I have 30 total…..and I’ve finished 3 as of today!  The nurses, technicians and staff at the center are just awesome.  So kind, compassionate and caring.  It makes having to go everyday so much easier.  The best part is that they have free valet parking…which I have used when it was really, really cold.  I plan to use it whenever the weather is bad.

Wednesdays are the long days.  After the treatment (which I failed to mention only lasts about 10 minutes) I have to check in with Dr. Radiation to just be sure everything is going ok.  And after 3 treatments, everything is OK.  I’ve been told that the skin reactions are supposed to show up after a couple of weeks.  I don’t think it will take my skin that long…..it’s already starting to be uncomfortable.

Each day is one day closer to being finished.  I’m looking forward to Christmas Break when I don’t have to get up and get dressed until the afternoon treatment!

 

 

 

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Today I did something I’ve never done before.  Here’s a hint….

 

 

Our school district has raised funds for the OMRF for many, many years and this is one of the events.  I’ve never done a “fun run” before (and NO, I didn’t attempt the 5K) but it was really fun!

My school put together a team shirt…..

 

On the front they honored women in our school who have or have battled breast cancer…..

 

(the picture doesn’t show the silver print very well, but I love that it sparkles!)

I feel very honored to be supported by such wonderful people.  I consider them my school family.  I know that if I need ANYTHING….all I have to do is ask.  It’s rather humbling.

Here’s some of my friends…

It’s also quite surreal to see my name on this shirt.  Even though I am reminded daily that my life has been altered….it’s always a shock to see it in print or have to check a box on a form that says “has cancer”, or to see a friend that I haven’t seen in a while and have to say it out loud.  I’m just weird I guess.

But as Thanksgiving Day approaches….My list of things to be thankful for is quite long.  But I am….thankful for family and friends that remember to pray for me and check on me.  I am blessed!!!

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Therapy….

You may or may not have been wondering what I have been doing with myself as I travel this bumpy road of cancer.   Well….here’s proof that I haven’t totally fallen off the edge of the earth.

My friend, Ashley, is a photographer as hired me to make hats to use when she photographs babies and toddlers….Here’s the first installment….

Here’s the bunny hat….sooooo cute….with sparkly pink ribbon

Next….The Owl Hat…Ashely sent a pic of one she liked….I found the pattern (for free I might add) and came up with my version…It’s too cute!!!  Mom helped me make this while I was home recouperating….we had WAY too much fun with this one!  (this one is actually crocheted)

 

Goldie was even kind enough to be our model!

Next, the Green/Blue Earflap Hat…LOVE the braids….

 

 

Now, the Stripey, Boy hat….so fun with all the colors!

and the cute pom-pom…

And Finally…the Rosebud Hat!  with tiny hand knit rosebuds and leaves…

These were just soooooo fun…and helped to keep my hands and mind busy.  I have already sent her some scarves…and there are more baby hats to make….I’ll show you when I get more finished!

 

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Yesterday, I had my follow up appt. with Dr. Surgeon.  The final pathology results came back as ALL CLEAR!!!  Evidently a couple of lymph nodes “lit up” with the radioactive isotopes but when they were put under the microscope….no cancer!  I am incredibly thankful and relieved! (they ended up taking a total of 5 nodes….no wonder my arm pit has been so sore!)

I also found out that the cancer was caused from estrogen and testosterone…..I was taking both replacements at the recommendation of Dr. GYN.  I believe we’ll be having a bit of a discussion next time I visit him. This also means I can NEVER use any type of replacement, synthetic or natural, to help me deal with the hot flashes or emotional roller coaster……ugh.  Dr. Surgeon said that there are some things that Dr. Oncologist could recommend.  I hope it works!!!

Now, there’s more healing time and appointment with Dr. Oncologist.  Time to move forward and put this behind me.

Thanks for all the cards, prayers, positive thoughts and friendship…..I love and appreciate them all!!!!!

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Healing Time…

Monday was surgery day…..Started at 7:30 a.m. taking blood…..wire insertion……nuclear medicine…..and finally surgery.  I was waking up in recovery at 9 p.m.  It was a very long day for me and my family…Mom, Dad, David, Diane and my friend Connie. Jimmy, my brother, showed up after work.  I didn’t get to eat or drink anything from midnight Sunday until Monday evening!

I had several moments of being overwhelmed with the whole business but everything came out ok.  After the surgery, I was having pain and nausea that we couldn’t seem to get under control.  I was begging to stay overnight….so they called they Dr. and he agreed.  It was the best decision.  Mom and I were so exhausted that staying there was certainly the best option.

Mom stayed with me until today, Thursday.  It was awesome having her here.  I had friends that brought food, so she got our meals on the table, we napped everyday, we crafted a bit and had a great time together.  Today she felt the need to be useful so she straightened my garage a bit.  It was a very nice gesture!  That and vacuumed the floor for me.  I am thankful for both!

I meet with the surgeon for a followup appt on Tuesday.  Everything seems to be healing well.  The incision under my arm is the most uncomfortable.  but it gets better everyday.  I’m hoping to go back to school on Monday.  It will be hard and tiring but I need to do it.

I think the cats like it when I stay home!  They have been quite entertaining!  I’m glad they are here to keep me company.

On another note, My sister, had her mammogram after I found out I had cancer (she had missed a few years).  They found a abnormal lymph node, did an ultra sound, then a biopsy, and Hallelujah, it was NOT cancer.  They will keep it under a close watch but I’m so thankful she doesn’t have to live through this same experience.

waiting..again…for the next step.

 

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Marking time….

This is one of the things I do to center myself….

 

Banana Cranberry Bread….

These will become gifts for Bosses Day….

Pecan Cranberry Muffins….

These will be breakfast for the next few days!

Both were very tasty!

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A New Journey

This past week I was diagnosed with Infiltrating Ductile Carcinoma aka Breast Cancer.

Things I know—-

It’s the most common type among women

surgery can often be a lumpectomy possibly followed up by chemo and radiation

I’m scared

I have amazing and incredible friends and family

that it was discovered through my yearly mammogram

I’m thankful for cancer research

I see my surgeon next week which will determine the schedule and plan for surgery and treatment

that I am tough and determined

I have faith in God

I have two cats who keep me company

I’m allergic to bandage adhesive…found out the hard way

I am soley supporting the Puffs Tissue company

I’m not sure how much I will blog about this but check back with me from time to time.

I’m glad I can knit myself hats

I’m overwhelmed by the outpouring of prayers from family, friends and people I don’t even know

My students and my job are important to me and will help keep me focused and give me purpose

If I need the tiniest little thing….there is a long line of people who are willing to help me.

I have a really top notch cancer policy

I’m thankful for the mammogram machine even though it’s uncomfortable and awkward and somewhat humiliating

No one in my family has had breast cancer

Things I don’t know……

Too much to mention…..but hopefully I can continue to add to the “Things I know list” as I travel this road.

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Crossing Over….

There’s something about turning 50…..I decided I could wallow in self pity or celebrate……I chose the celebration!

My good friend Dawn and I took a quick trip to Granbury, TX (at the recommendation of my friend Michelle) and we had a wonderful time!

We stayed in a charming B & B called “Manor of time”, (can you believe that I FORGOT my camera…so all of these are from my iPhone….sorry!)

It is listed on the Historical Register of Texas and is BEAUTIFULLY furnished!

and it had beautiful stained glass windows!

The second night, we were the only guests so Dawn tried out the pump organ…you can see the video here..(can you name that tune???)

It was just WONDERFUL!!!  We had a lovely room…which we stayed in a lot of the time because of the excessive heat….and because it was just so relaxing!

Granbury still has their original town square and it is full of nice shops, cafes and restaurants.  I think we checked them ALL out!!! (and brought home some lovely fudge!)

They were working on the town hall so we didn’t get to go in.  But I think the clock tower reminds me of the scary mansions in the old scary movies!  LOL  I kept expecting to see bats going flying about!

Our breakfasts we beyond delicious…and very elegant….

my favorite part of the breakfasts were the Dutch Babies…..total heaven on a plate!  Ours were filled with cherry preserves and chopped walnuts and a little whipped cream…..piping hot…right out of the oven…..O M G!!!!!

We had a wonderful time but the celebrating didn’t stop there….A week later, my nieces and sister and sister-in-law….put on a wonderful party!

It was filled with wonderful food…

family….

and friends….

Thanks everyone….for helping me cross over into a new and exciting chapter of my life….

(Donna made this collage of pictures ….it was way fun!)

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