Psalm 118:17

I will not die, but live, and will proclaim what the Lord has done.

Monday, November 1, 2010

It has been an eventful weekend. Dr. McKeen made a house visit Friday evening and told me that there is not much else that they can do medically for me. This chemo that I had talked about previously is still an option. I need to stop vomiting though. She has called in hospice at this time to help with the pain management and nausea/vomiting symptoms. By Saturday, they were here and got me all set up. They deliver the meds to my door and they go through their pharmacy. Today, I met the doctor and the nurse that is assigned to my case. I was very pleased with both of them. It has just been a whirlwind of people in and out of my house, which is very exhausting. Needless to say, I vomited yesterday around 10:30am and have not thrown up since. I was also able to go trick or treating with my kids. Ian pushed me around in a wheel chair, but I felt good and enjoyed being with my kids.
Meanwhile, on Friday, a friend of ours and my cousin wanted to know if they could come pray outside my house. I was so excited and said of course. What started out as a hand full of people, turned into a crowd of close to 300 people. This many people, praying, singing praise songs and lighting a candle in my front yard. I sat on the couch listening to the music as they sang. When it was silent, Ian and I would pray together from inside. I am believing that I am healed. I will claim that as of November 1, 2010, I have been healed in Jesus' name! Thank you all who stood in the gap for me tonight and for those of you who did so at your own homes and across the world. You will never know how much this has meant to me. The Bible tells us that when 2 or more are gathered and ask in Jesus Name, it will be done! Those are powerful words, but I am believing them!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

I'm sorry it's been so long since I have written. My computer crashed and is still being worked on. Ian brought me home his laptop so that I could catch up until mine is fixed.
Unfortunately, it has been another rough week. I had chemo last Tuesday and went in with a very positive attitude. I did well the day of chemo and the next day, Wednesday, I felt good enough to go to the pumpkin patch with Parker's class. We had breakfast together by ourselves and then met his class there. We had such a good time together and the Lord gave me strength to get through it. But, by Wednesday night, the vomiting started. And it continued until Sunday. My abdomen was also very full of fluid and causing me a great deal of pain. When the fluid gets so full, it begins to push on all my organs and is painful. It too causes nausea and vomiting. Mom called Dr. McKeen Saturday night to find out if I could get it drained on Sunday. The catch was, that I only want a certain doctor to do it. This will have been my sixth time of being drained and each doctor is very different. It is not a pleasant procedure getting the needle into my belly and I have found one doctor at Good Samaritan that is very gentle and is worth waiting for. Unfortunately he was out of town for the weekend, but he said he could do it Monday. So, we scheduled it for Monday and all went well. She didn't want any more than 3liters taken off, so that is what they took. They could have taken more, but it is too much of a fluid shift for me to take anymore than that. Yesterday, I was very sore, but had my chemo appointment. I was not sure whether I could take the chemo, because I am so weak. Now that my belly has gone way down, you can feel what is in there. I told Jamie that morning that I could feel tumors and she could too. Dr. McKeen could also feel them all over my abdomen. My breast was completely soft last week and now this week, half of it is hard again. So, she said the chemo is not working. She gave me the week off because I'm not strong enough and will start me on a new chemo next week. It is called Doxil and has some yucky side effects. It will make my hands, feet and mouth raw. While I am getting the chemo, they will put ice packs on my hands and feet and keep ice in my mouth to try and prevent the chemo from going to those spots. It's called cryotherapy. They gave me a kit with special lotion to use soft pads to put in my shoes when I walk. I will get it once a month, but will still get my Herceptin weekly. This chemo is supposed to be more specific to the abdomen and we have got to get that under control. She sent off for tumor markers again this week and will get results next week.
Meanwhile, Maddie crawled into bed with me the night before last and said she is afraid that I am going to die. She said she is not dumb and knows that people die from cancer and she knows that I am very sick. She also said that she worried about me when I am home by myself. She is afraid that I am going to slip and fall or vomiting and Daddy can't get to me fast enough. She can't wait to get home to make sure that I am ok. I don't even know what to say to her anymore. I just told her that I don't plan on dying and that we are trusting the Lord. This is awful, but I wanted to say to her, I would love to just close my eyes and not wake up. Heaven just sounds better and better. No suffering or pain. I know that sounds so selfish of me, but there are days when those thoughts cross my mind. Some days just get the best of me.
Please pray for strength and endurance as this journey continues to be long and difficult.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Chemo went well yesterday. My blood counts were good, so it was ok to start the chemo again. She did tumor markers last week and the results were good. She checks three different tumor markers on me. Two are for breast and one is for my abdomen. The two breast markers are stable and the abdomen came down 200 points from last month, but are still high. It looks like the cancer is responding to this chemo. I am thrilled that the breast is stable and I'm happy that the abdomen is going down instead of up. Every little bit of progress is a step in the right direction. It gives me what I need to sit there and get another dose of chemo.
I had signed up to take Parker on his field trip to the pumpkin patch today, not knowing that I would be getting chemo the day before. I woke up feeling ok this morning and decided I would still go. I couldn't disappoint him. I promised him I would be there. So, we went and got breakfast together and then met his class at the pumpkin patch. I started feeling a little nauseous while I was there, but I did good. I made it through the field trip and enjoyed being with him. I'm so thankful that I got to go and have that time with him. Hopefully I will remain good through the rest of the week. One day at a time.

Monday, October 18, 2010

We went camping and had the time of our lives! We went to Fort Desoto on the west coast and it was beautiful. The weather was gorgeous! The kids had such a great time together and met a ton of kids in the campground. And Lisa, Jeff, Ian and I always enjoy being together. I am exhausted today, but it was well worth it. Especially when Maddie came in my room last night started crying and said, "Mom, I didn't want it to end". That made it all worth the effort to go! I have memories to last a lifetime from this weekend.
Now, back home to reality. And tomorrow is chemo day. I am going to think positive and say that I am going to do well and not be sick. So, please pray along with me that I will tolerate tomorrow and the days to come.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

I did not get chemo yesterday, just my Herceptin. I was grateful for another week off to recuperate. I still am very weak and tired. I feel like I want to sleep all the time. She said to sleep when my body wants it because it is trying to heal itself. It just makes you feel like a bum being in bed all day. I've caught a cold too which my body is trying to fight off as well.
The camping plans are still in motion and my kids are so excited. I will go one way or the other because I do not want to disappoint them. I'm just praying for strength. I am not feeling sick, which is good. I can deal with being weak and tired. We plan on leaving tomorrow and the campground is on the west coast right on the beach. Please pray that I will continue to feel good and continue to eat and gain my strength. I am looking forward to spending time with my family and our friends.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Well, I am home from the hospital again. I went in Thursday because it had been 9 days of vomiting. I actually called my doctor and asked her to send me. I hate going to the hospital, so she knew I was desperate. I was extremely dehydrated and so weak. But, I am home today and praying that I will continue to feel better each day. I don't know if I will get chemo on Tuesday or not. I'm holding my breath! I'm praying that she will give me one more week to recuperate. We have had camping reservations with our friends for Thursday of this week through the weekend. I really want to go. Please pray that I will feel well enough to go and I can have this time with my kids and our friends. The weather has been so beautiful and I think it would be so good for me to spend some time outside. And pray that I will gain my strength back this week. My legs are so weak again, like jello. I think I had a couple of bites of yogurt in 10 days and that was it. I need food to build my muscle back again. I did it once before, and I will do it again. I'm trying so hard to keep my head up and remain positive. Sometimes it is a daily struggle and sometimes it is minute by minute. The Lord will continue to carry me through!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

I am sorry that it has been so long since I blogged. I had a really rough week last week. I got chemo on last Tuesday and started vomiting in the night that night and as of yesterday, I was still vomiting. I have not eaten anything in that time and it was all I could do just to keep fluids down. I called the doctor yesterday morning and she had me come in. She sent me to Good Samaratin Hospital to have my abdomen drained again and to receive fluids and anti nausea medication through my IV. I think we got my stomach to finally settle down a little. I will not get chemo today. It probably won't be until next week if my stomach is doing better. My WBC's have also bottomed out. They were .8 yesterday, which is bad. If they don't come up on their own, I will have to have a shot called Neulasta, that makes WBC in your long bones. I had this shot after each chemo treatment four years ago. It was very painful for me. It makes your long bones ache really bad. Please pray that I don't have to start on that shot again.
I am trying to remain positive and keep my head held up. Some days are more difficult than others. I was going to be admitted to the hospital yesterday, but they ended up letting me go. I was so glad, because today is Parker's 5th birthday and I did not want to be in the hospital.
Please continue to pray for healing and that my body would be able to respond to the treatment.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Well, yesterday was a long day, but it went well. They drained three liters off of my abdomen, which is all Dr. McKeen wanted off. If you take too much, it begins to mess up your electrolytes and protein. It was about 9lbs of fluid. I then had an infusion of albumin to replace the protein and them chemo. All went well and we came home. Today, I am sore, but my pain is much better. The fluid was definitely causing most of the pain. I'm just praying it doesn't come back, at least not too fast. I've had a little upset stomach today from the chemo, but not too bad. The first week is usually not bad, it's when it begins to accumulate that it gets worse. But, I am going to think positive thoughts and pray that I do well on this chemo. I have a peace about this and I am trusting the Lord. Sometimes it is minute by minute, but He continues to give me a peace about all of this. He's just not done with me yet.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

I received my Herceptin today and then saw Dr. McKeen after my infusion. Unfortunetly, my tumor markers have sky rocketed. I went from 450 to 2800. I have been in a lot of pain lately because of the fluid on my abdomen and have put on about 9lbs. in fluid since last Tuesday. So, tomorrow I am going to Good Samaratin Hospital to have the fluid drained and to start back on chemotherapy. I will have three weeks on and one week off. I was not completely surprised. I was never convinced that the fluid was coming from my liver. I know my body and this is just how I felt before. So, I knew it was the cancer on my omentum. However, I am still dissappointed. I was just getting a taste of feeling better and being independant and here we go again. I was hoping that my journey had come to an end, but I guess God is not done with me yet. It will be a different drug this time. I will not be able to get the last one again due to my allergic reaction to it.
I told Maddie tonight and she burst into tears. Once again, she is the hardest part to all of this.
I will keep you posted as to how everything goes tomorrow.

Friday, September 17, 2010

I saw my oncologist on Tuesday and told her I was still concerned about the fluid in my abdomen. She still thinks that there is a very good chance that it is my liver. She increased my diuretics and took blood to check my tumor markers. We will wait and see what the markers say and go from there. I have a peace about everything and have given it over to the Lord. I don't know why we love to wrestle with God instead of just giving it to Him from the beginning. It's so much easier when He carries the burden for you. You think I would have learned that by now. I will let you know something as soon as I get the results of my tumor markers. Until then, continue to pray for my miracle!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Since I have been off of chemo, I have not been sick which is a wonderful thing. And I am getting more strength back each day. However, the fluid in my abdomen has come back. My doctor said it could be my liver causing it. She said that my liver may be functioning like cirrhosis because of the chemo and all the medications I have been on. So, she has put me on diuretics and some other stuff to help clean out my liver. I'm just praying that it's not the cancer. My pain has come back and I am having to take pain medication again. Just keep the prayers coming as I continue to ask for total healing.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

There is a light at the end of the tunnel! I had my Herceptin infusion today and then saw Dr. McKeen after. My cancer markers are way down, almost normal and I am done with chemotherapy! That was the best news I have heard in a long time. She is going to keep me on Herceptin once a week for the next four weeks and then if I am stable, I will just get it once a month. I will probably have to get it for the rest of my life, but it does not make me sick and it only takes about an hour from start to finish. I can live with that. They have very good results with this medicine and she said it may be all I need. I will have a petscan in about four weeks. I am believing that there will be no cancer on that scan and I will be in full remission. My echocardiagram of my heart came back good. My heart is in good shape. We think the palpitations may be from the steroids that I am on. Today is the first day off of them.
My God is so AWESOME! Mckeen seemed to be surprised that the cancer has gone away like it has. She said if I do good deeds that she thinks it might stay away. I know better than that. It's by grace that I am healed and my physician is my heavenly Father.
Please continue to pray for total healing. I am so ecstatic with the news today that I want to shout it from the roof tops and give credit where credit is due!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

I have been having palpitations lately and Thursday was pretty bad. I called Ian to come home from work because I was home alone with the kids and afraid something would happen. Of course I didn't want to go to the hospital. I'm a nurse you know, and a cardiac one at that, and nothing is supposed to be wrong with my heart. Further more, I am sick of going to the hospital. Ian made me call Dr. Mckeen and I did. They of course told me to go the the ER if it continued. It didn't and I didn't have to go. But, they scheduled an echocardiogram and an EKG of my heart. I had to have it done at the hospital and they made an appointment for today. I had to check in with the ER patients and there were people vomiting and really sick in the ER waiting room. I just sat there praying that the Lord would put a hedge of protection around me. My immune system is weak and I just got out of the hospital. I don't need to catch anything else. So, please pray that I was not exposed to anything. I waited two hours for a scheduled test because they couldn't find my prescription. I was a little irritated. But, it was finally done and now we wait for results. The main side effect of the Herceptin that I am still getting is cardiac problems. I'm praying my heart is strong and that the chemo nor the Herceptin has not affected it in anyway.
I brought Maddie with me and we went and had lunch together before the test just to spend some time together alone. On the way to lunch, she started asking me alot of questions about how much it had spread. We told her it had spread, but she never knew all of the places it had gone to. I felt the need to be honest with her and so I told her everywhere it had gone. She has been so strong this summer and has been such big help to me. She has stood by me when I was home alone with my kids and held my head when I was vomiting. She would rub my back and say it's ok Mom, let it out, I'm right here. She would get a cold washcloth for me and clean out my bucket of vomit. Make sure I had something to drink and make lunch for Parker. And, today, she finally broke. She burst into tears in the car and said, Mom, I've had enough! I'm tired of you being sick and all summer. Why does it have to be you? This is what I hate the most about this! When it hurts my little girl, Momma bear comes out. But, I stayed calm and told her we will never know why and it really doesn't matter. I told her mommy is doing better and we know the Lord has never left us through all of this and mommy is going to be better again real soon. I was so glad she was finally honest with me, but my heart is broken tonight as I picture her little face fall apart. I know everyone will say this will make her stronger and who she is today. Well, that's great, but I bet it's not what you would want for your child. I know she will be alright and it will make her stronger. It just wasn't how I would have done it. But, I know she is in God's hands and he can take better care of her than I can. So, just keep her in your prayers as she walks through her feelings.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

I had my Herceptin infusion on Tuesday, but no chemo. She is holding chemo from week to week right now until she makes a decision as to whether I need to go back on chemo or not. I'm praying that I don't have to. Mentallly, I am not ready to go back on right now, so if it comes to that, I will need lots of prayer to mentally prepare myself again. But, for now, I am going to enjoy each day that I am off of it and try not to think past that. I do pretty well with the Herceptin. It seems to be upsetting my stomach, but is tolerable and only lasts a day or so. For the most part, I feel much better, just very weak. When you feel better, you want to do so much more and then I end up over doing it. It is amazing how weak you become when you are in bed for so long. One day at a time, right? I continue to pray for total healing and believing it has already been done!

Friday, August 20, 2010

I'm home! Dr. Mckeen came in around 5:00 last night and said my CT scan had improved since Monday and I could go home. She feels like this may have all been caused by the chemo. So, she will not be giving me chemo for a while. I will just get Herceptin for now. She said many women do very well on just the Herceptin. She wants to research a little more and see if this is truly from the chemo. There is another woman in Boston that is receiving the same chemo as me and has the same symptoms, except she is worse than me right now. The doctors up there are trying to decide the same thing, whether it is a side effect of the chemo. Dr. Mckeen is going to recommend that they not give her the chemo again because of the similarities of both of our cases. My CT scan was so good that she feels comfortable not giving me the chemo right now. She said that I could be close to being in remission. We will see how I do with just the Herceptin and let my body heal from the pneumonia and mouth sores. Then, she will probably order a PET scan and we will know for sure whether I am in remission or not. I was overwhelmed by these results. There are a few benign lesions in my left breast, there does not appear to be any cancer in the lung, and there is still some fluid in my abdomen, but my abdomen looks unremarkable. I was brought to tears! My God is so good! He's still good even when I doubted Him at times. That's my kind of God! Always faithful! I am home now on antibiotics and healing. Weak, but doing well. I am thrilled to not be getting chemo for a while so that I can get my strength and energy back. There is a light at the end of the tunnel!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Feeling better as far as the aching and fever goes. And my breathing has gotten a little better. I am still on the oxygen, but I know it is temporary until I can get my lungs cleared up. It appears to be a very bad case of pneumonia. My left upper lobe and my right middle lobe are completed solid with gunk in them. They are trying breathing treatments on me to try and loosen them up and get stuff up, but, we have had no luck. It just gets me coughing and then I start vomiting. I just had another CT scan today ordered by Dr. Mckeen to see if this is being caused by the chemo. Apparently this could be a side effect of this type of chemo. Depending on the results of the CT scan today will decide whether I have to have a bronchoscopy tomorrow. They will go down my throat and into my lungs and take a biopsy of what ever is in there. Then they will run tests on it to see exactly what it is. I am so ready to go home, but I'm glad they are being thorough in getting to the bottom of this and where it is coming from. I will let you know when we have results and what the game plan is next.

Monday, August 16, 2010

I slept good last night, but woke up and could not do anything with exertion even with the oxygen on. I called Dr. McKeen's office and they wanted me to come in. Ian had to go rent a wheelchair for me because I couldn't even walk to the bathroom because my oxygen would drop too low. Maddie had meet and greet day today. So Ian took her to that and my Mom took me to the doctor. She looked at my CT scan from last week and saw a spot on my left lung that had changed. I asked if it could be progression of the disease and she said possibly. She said it could also be a mucus plug from a fungal infection which would be treatable. The good news is that, my tumor markers have gone from 1790 to 400. So, she decided to admit me to Good Samaritan Hospital. Needless to say, I wasn't too happy. Although, I get panicked when I can't breathe, so it is probably a good thing. I saw the infectious disease doctor first and he ran a battery of tests. And then, Dr. Scoma, my lung surgeon came in and ordered another CT scan to see what has changed from Tuesday. He said either it is fluid again, a pulmonary embolism or infection. I got the results pretty quickly and it is pneumonia. The good news is that the fluid has not changed and he said the cancer has improved since the last CT scan I had several weeks ago when I was here having surgery. I was so happy to hear that. They have started me on strong IV antibiotics and will be here a few days. He said it will probably take a good 48hrs. to feel any results. I'm praying that the breathing gets better before then. If I lay still in bed them I'm fine, but if I do anything, I can't breathe. I hate being here when my kids start school tomorrow. But, they are home with my Mom and Ian is spending the night with me. I don't want to be alone because I get so scared when I can't breathe. I talked to the kids tonight and they sounded fine and are excited about school tomorrow. They are always fine with my Mom. I am just thrilled it's pneumonia and not anything worse. This is treatable and then I can get off the oxygen again. Yeah!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

I woke up this morning at 7am and felt like someone was smothering me. I could not breathe. I started grabbing Ian to wake him up and he was scrambling to get my oxygen on me. When I checked my oxygen, it was 68. It should be above 92. I went to my sisters last night and when I got home, I told Ian that it was the best I have felt in a while. Then I wake up to this. It scared me to death. I have tried all day to get off the oxygen and as soon as I take it off, it falls quickly. I will call the doctor tomorrow and see what she says. But, I am very discouraged. I did not want to have to be on this oxygen ever again. I don't know if it's fluid again or if I have an infection because I am still running a fever. I am praying that it is not fluid and maybe I just need a stronger antibiotic. Please pray that it is nothing too serious. I am anxious to know what is wrong. I feel like I take one step forward and two steps back.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Still running a fever today. The doctor said to give the antibiotic another 24hrs. or the fever may be a side effect of the chemo. I remember running a fever for 21 days straight the first time I went through chemo. They tested me for everything, ended up pulling my port out and canceling my last two treatments of chemo. Nothing ever showed up positive for any kind of infection. So, it may be a side effect of chemo. In any case, it's not fun. The fever makes me feel like I have the flu and keeps me in bed. I'm tired of being sick! My mouth sores have on the other hand gotten much better, and I am able to eat now. My mom asked them on Tuesday if they had ever had patients with sores this bad and they said no, this was the worse case. I seem to react violently to chemotherapy. I have never had a strong immune system, and I'm beginning to think that has alot to do with how I tolerate chemo. I'm trying to hang in there, but sometimes it just seems so hard. Ian is trying to keep me positive and my head up. That's a big job for him right now. Maybe you should be praying for him instead. Anyways, that's whats going on now. Hopefully, the fever will go away soon and I will start to feel better soon.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

No chemo today! I woke up with a fever of 101.8 and could barely get dressed. It was all I could do to get my clothes on to get to the doctors office. They tested me for everything under the sun and decided that I was too sick to get chemo today. They gave me IV antibiotics, lots of fluids for dehydration and of course my Herceptin. They sent me home on antibiotics and medicine for the sores in my mouth. They are actually a little better today and I was able to eat a little food. Hopefully they will continue to get better and not come back. Now hopefully I will feel better soon and have another week to recover.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Running a fever today and still can't eat because of the sores in my mouth. I am scheduled for chemo tomorrow and I am very anxious about getting it. I just don't feel like I am strong enough to take another hit yet. Please pray for strength and healing to get me through this week. This is my last week home with my kids before school starts and was hoping I would feel better. Praying that the days will get better as the week goes on.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

I went to Palm Beach Gardens Hospital yesterday to have my port checked and unfortunetly, it had a leak in it. This meant I would have to have this one removed and a new one put in. Fortunetly, since I work there, we pulled some strings and got one of the surgeons to take care of it for me while I was there instead of having to come back for another hospital visit. So, Dr. Faro took me to surgery and replaced my port and also took out the tube in my chest. I got a two for one. Instead of having to go back in the hospital next Friday to have the tube out, he said he would just do it for me now and eliminate that visit. So, I now have no tube in my lung and I am hopefully done with hospital visits for a while. My mouth is still in very bad shape from the chemo. I am trying some new medicine that we picked up yesterday, but have not seen any results yet. Please pray for healing in my mouth so that I can eat. As of right now, everything burns and I can hardly eat food period.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

I saw the surgeon today and he said my lungs look good and I am getting the tube taken out next Friday. The tube is in my right lung and the fluid is gone there. There is still a small amount of fluid in the left lung, but not enough to put a tube in. It has stayed the same amount and will hopefully go away as it responds to chemotherapy. I will be happy to have this out. He was surprised that I never drained much fluid after he put it in. I was having it drained once a week and getting over a liter of fluid. Then he puts the tube in and it stops. I think it was a God thing! The sores in my mouth are so bad today that it has been difficult to eat or drink. Tomorrow I am sampling a brand new medication for this to see if it will work. It is for severe mouth sores from chemotherapy. Everything I eat burns all the way down my esophagus. Unfortunately,this is the main side effect of this chemo. Please pray for my mouth to heal and not be so painful. I am also having a study done on my port tomorrow. It is not working properly and I need if for the chemo. I can only use the veins in my left arm and they will not last through chemo. It will burn them and then I'm in trouble. Please pray that they will be able to fix the problem tomorrow and not to have any kind of surgery.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Chemo went pretty well yesterday. I saw Dr. McKeen after treatment and tried to get alot of things squared away. She changed alot of my medication and started me on new things to help with the side effects. She put me on a appetite enhancer and hopefully this will all help. My mouth is what is so painful right now. I can hardly swallow anything for the sores and it's just raw skin. I can't taste anything, which makes eating not even enjoyable. And I love food! Jamie brought me home from chemo and I slept for a little bit. Woke up feeling weak, but not nauseous. Later last night I started to feel the best I have in a while as far as my body goes. No aching and all that. I did not sleep again last night, which still seems to be an issue, but I'm feeling ok so far today. Just pray that my mouth gets better and I am able to get food down. I need nutrition to get my strength back and that is a real battle for me right now. I also got my CT scan results. My lungs looked very good, the cancer had not progressed any further in my lungs. It seemed to stay the same. But, she said that was to be expected until I get more chemo. The fluid around my heart seemed to be a little less as well. She also measured the tumor in my breast and it is down another inch from last week. So, every little thing I hold on to and take it one day at a time. I'm thankful for good news this week. I see the surgeon tomorrow about the tube in my lung. It is still not draining anything, so hopefully I will be able to get it out. Keep the prayers coming and I ask for strength to keep my head up. I've been struggling with being sick for so long and trying to remain positive. I am also having self esteem issues. My hair is on it's way out and I am trying to hold on as long as possible. My sisters say it's not as bad as I think, but I just don't look like myself anymore. I have lost so much weight and I just don't feel like me anymore. It is hard to look in the mirror at times. This is just another level to this disease and I will work through it. I did the first time, it just takes some time. The Lord has fearfully and wonderfully made me, Right?

Thursday, July 29, 2010

I am so excited to tell you all, that Maddie's birthday party was a huge success and I was able to participate in the entire evening without my oxygen! Woo! Hoo! The girls started out with swimming, then dinner, dancing and on to the spa party. Aunt Robyn did everyones hair, Aunt Jamie and Aunt Jenn painted nails and toe nails and I did make-up. They looked so beautiful when they were all done! We had the most spectacular cupcakes that Aunt Jamie made that were rings, nail polish, mascara bottles, q-tips and high heel shoes. She did an excellent job and the girls thought it was great! They then watched Girls Just Wanna have Fun and moved on to Truth or Dare! They had to run around the house in the dark, eat dog food, wake up Aunt Jamie by tickling her nose and finally ended up in the pool at 1:00am. Finally at 2:00am they were all tucked in and all the adults crashed. I'm not sure how late they stayed up whispering and giggling. Everyone was up at 7:00am and Grammy had cinnamon rolls made. One more dip in the pool and by 10:30am everyone was gone. Phew! I made it! I spent most of the day in my Mom's chair with my oxygen and completely exhausted, but filled with joy that I made it through the night! She will be officially 10 years old on Saturday and I am so thankful for those 10 years. When something grips a hold of your life you begin the look through different eyes. I watched her all evening and just soaked in her sweet smile and thanked the Lord for giving me a chance to be her Mom. She kept kissing me all evening and telling me how happy she was that I was there. My eyes spill with tears as I sit here and write this. I am thinking that two weeks ago I was in the hospital fighting to breathe and have been so sick since I have been home. But, the Lord has come through as He always does and given me the healing and strength to be there for my little girl. I was not able to shop for one thing for this party. My Mom took care of all the food and decorations, Jamie took her shopping for the gift bags, invitations and made all the cupcakes and Robyn took her shopping for snacks and fun things for the party, bought her gifts from me and Ian and spent alot of time on hair last night. I am so grateful for each part that they played to pull this party off. I just had to show up.
As far as my progress goes. I will have chemo on Tuesday. I had this week off, which was also a blessing. It worked out perfect for her birthday week to not be so sick. But, I am back on for the next three weeks in a row. I then see the surgeon on Thursday to evaluate if I can have the tube taken out of my lung. It is not draining any fluid and I am doing pretty well without my oxygen. I gain strength little by little each day and feel like I have turned a corner. I will let you know as the week unfolds as to what happens next with my appointments.
I know this was a long one tonight, but was so excited to share my joy!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Everything went well at the Dr's office today. She can hear a little fluid in the bases of my lungs, but nothing much. She said that when the lung slowly inflates like this and having all the fluid that I had causes there to be some junk left in my lungs. That's part of why I keep coughing and getting stuff up. There may also be inflammation from everything. So, she started me on a steroid regimen of 12 days to reduce the inflammation and help the cough go away. I also told her that I getting very sick vomiting on every Saturday since I started the chemo. She gave me a new anti-nausea med that I am going to take Friday night and Saturday morning to see if that helps. All in all the nurse practitioner and Dr. Mckeen were very pleased with my progress. They both said my lungs sounded good, the ascites was hardly there anymore and the tumor in my breast has significantly shrunk in size. I'm going to keep taking the antibiotic and start the steroids in the morning and hopefully that will take care of the fever and the cough. And most importantly, I will be with Maddie for her party! I actually decorated cupcakes with her and Jamie this afternoon. We had a great time!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Today started out going OK until this afternoon. I was able to not throw up and was able to get food in me. Around 4:00 this afternoon, my eyes started burning, so I took my temp. It was 100.8. I have to call the doctor if it goes above 100. So, I did and she wanted me to go to the hospital. I begged her not to go, so she called me in an antibiotic and I have to go in the morning. I was supposed to get herceptin tomorrow anyway, but that may change. Maddie's birthday party is Wednesday night and her birthday is Saturday. I am going to be so upset if I miss this birthday party. This is just like Satan to use my kids to get to me. I started crying hysterically when I hung up the phone and blew my nose, of which is very sore, and started a bloody nose. It got all over me and I got even angrier! Well, he got the reaction he was hoping for! I fell right into his trap. There, now I admit it and that's all he's going to get out of me.
Please pray that all goes well at the doctors office tomorrow and that I am with my little girl on Wednesday.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Yesterday I woke up with a low grade fever and just felt yucky. I don't know if it's the chemo, or if I am run down from going out on Wednesday. I am still running a fever today and Parker is also running a fever, so I don't know if we picked up something. I was bummed because I had such a good day on Wednesday and then have felt like I had the flu since. On a positive note, I have been going long periods of time without my oxygen and have been able to keep my oxygen level high enough. If I try to do too much, it drops. But, at least I've made some progress. I'm happy with that. I will be happy to get rid of the oxygen all together. Please pray that the fever goes away and I continue to gain strength.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Robyn took me to chemo yesterday which went well. I saw the doctor first and she finally gave me some good news. She could hear breath sounds in all lobes of my lungs. I looked at Robyn and we both began to cry. I was so afraid that she was going to tell me that my left lung was now bad. She thinks the constant coughing is from the tube irritating my lung the way it is rubbing against it. I was just happy it wasn't fluid making me cough. Finally some good news to lift my spirits. Each day I get a little more energy and am feeling better. Today I actually went on an outing. My sisters, mom, aunts, gramma, cousins and their kids all met at the little water park in gardens and Jamie picked me up and took me. I went with my oxygen, which I hated, but it was better than sitting at home. As soon as I got in the car, Parker said, mom your going too. He was so excited that I was going to be with them. They have constantly been doing things away from the house to let me recuperate. He's not used to me going anywhere with them lately. Both my kids kept kissing me the whole time I was there and just so happy. It made my day! I love my two precious children so much and have missed such valuabale time with them lately. That's what I hate so much about this disease. I am completely worn out tonight, but it was so worth it to be with my kids today. I just keep praying for strength each day and that I can get off this oxygen soon. The home health nurse has been coming every other day and draining my lung. Surprisingly, there has not been much fluid! Praise the Lord! Hopefully my lung is healing and is not going to produce much fluid anymore. Thank you for continued prayers and all your words of encouragement! I value all of you as you walk with me through this journey.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Well, a lot has happened this past week. I went for chemo on Tuesday and while I was there Dr. Mckeen listened to my lungs and decided I had to have it taken care of immediately. So, I finished my chemo and was admitted to Good Samaritan Hospital. I was met by a Dr. Scoma who is a cardiothoracic surgeon. He sent me for a CT scan to see how bad my lungs were and gave me my options for surgery. The original plan was to have a surgery that drained both lungs, re-inflated them and to put some kind of powder in there to stop the fluid. It was a big surgery. I would have to be in ICU for the next 48 hrs. to control the pain. I was to get an epidural to help control the pain. I was scared to say the least. But, the next morning, Dr. Scoma came in and said there was a change in plans. Unfortunately my lungs were in worse shape than they thought. The cancer has penetrated the right lung and he was afraid that he would not be able to get me off the ventilator after surgery, which I could then get pneumonia and it would be a downhill spiral. On one hand, I was glad I didn't have to have the surgery. But, this was not good news. I took it very hard. I finally went down for the alternate surgery. Basically he put a tube in my right lung and it will remain there for 4-6 weeks. I will drain it at home as needed and eventually the fluid will stop and the lung will re-inflate. He decided to just do the right side, but we may need to go back and do the left as well. He said it's uncomfortable to have two at the same time. I was still nervous about having this done because I would be awake during the procedure. But, I got down to invasive surgery and the nurses could not have been nicer. I quickly found out that my nurses daughter, Stacey, works in ambulatory surgery which is where I used to work. She said to me, what can I do for you honey. I told her I was scared and she said, enough said, I'll take care of that. She gave me fentanyl and versed and I do not remember a thing until I started vomiting in recovery. I was very well taken care of and so grateful that she was with me.
I came home Thursday night and have been recuperating at home. My family never leaves my side and I don't know what I would do without them. My pain has gotten a little better, but the coughing is still there. I'm wondering if my left lung is going to have a tube placed as well. The coughing gets me vomiting and I'm having a hard time keeping food down. My mouth is full of sores from the chemo, so it makes me not want to eat anyway. I need prayer for my appetite to increase. I've lost about 30lbs now and really can't afford to loose anymore. I need nutrition to heal and get better. I never thought I would be drinking ensure, but mom is getting it in me as best she can. Pray that the cancer responds well to the chemo. Dr. Scoma and Dr. Mckeen say the cancer in my lungs responds well to chemo. It's not one big tumor, but just haziness on my lungs.
I continue to ask for prayer and a miraculous healing that only my God can do!

Monday, July 12, 2010

I kind of had a rough weekend. Friday and Saturday I was just wiped out from the hospital. But, on Sunday I started vomiting and got worse as the day went on. My mom thinks I was dehydrated and started trying to get fluids in me. I actually had to drink boost. The diet I have been on has been no protein and I just don't think it is good for me right now. I have lost a lot of weight and my body is looking for protein in my muscles. I am slowly trying to get nourishment back in me and today has been much better. I only vomited a little this morning from coughing so much. I think my lung has already filled up again. I go tomorrow at 11:30 to get chemo again and I'm a little apprehensive as to what Dr. Mckeen is going to say about my lung. I know I'm going to have to have it drained again and I'm dreading it. Please pray that chemo goes well tomorrow and I have a peace about everything.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

I was able to breathe easier last night with the oxygen on, but still was very restless anticipating today. Fortunately, today went well. It was not near as painful as the first time. They gave me some IV sedation and numbed my lung more. The pain is when my lung starts to re-inflate as the fluid comes out. He didn't take the fluid out so quickly this time and would stop it all together when I started coughing so much and couldn't catch my breath. I never realized how I took advantage of every breath I took with ease before all of this. Not being able to breathe is such a horrible feeling. You can gasp all you want and it doesn't help you get a better breath. It's a scary feeling. Just glad today is over and I still have no side effects from the chemo. I am considering having a permanent drain placed in my lung so that I can drain it myself as needed. Dr. Faro, a surgeon at my hospital, said my lung is inflamed and with inflammation there is fluid. He said draining it more often and a little at a time will help the lung heal the inflammation and eventually stop producing fluid. I will have to see how fast this lung fills up again or if it does and then make my decision. Going to the hospital once a week to have it drained is just too much.
Please continue to pray without ceasing. I still believe my God will heal me!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

As far as treatment goes, it went well today. I have not gotten sick from the new chemo, which is a blessing. The bad news is that I was so short of breath while I was there. They checked my oxygen level and it was 79. It should be above 90. It was later in the day and they wanted me to go to the hospital and get my lung drained again, but when we called the hospital, it was going to be a long wait. We decided to wait until tomorrow and they ordered oxygen to be delivered at home. I have been so discouraged and have done a lot of crying this afternoon. It has only been a little over a week since I had it drained. I was hoping that it would have lasted longer. I had a difficult time the first time I had it drained and am scared to have it done again. Having oxygen delivered to my house was a low blow. I never thought it would come to this. I guess I have to admit that I am a little angry. When is enough, enough? Please pray for a good night sleep. I am so anxious about tomorrow that it is going to be hard to sleep. And please pray for a miracle!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

I have made my decision to go forward with the chemo. I am scheduled for 11:00 tomorrow. The side effects are suppossed to be minimal and I am told that I will start to feel better pretty quickly. I have a peace about my decision and am ready to move forward and begin to feel better. I am in bed most of the time right now due to pain.
Please continue to keep me in your prayers as I begin my new treatment tomorrow.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Friday's Herceptin infusion went well. I actually vomited before the infusion. I think from the pain medicine. Robyn had just gotten here to get the kids and they were all in my room when I started. So, out the door they went and Robyn stayed with me until I was done. I felt bad for the kids. I don't like them to see me like that. They went off to Calypso Bay with Robyn and Mom took me to get my infusion. I still have not made a decision regarding the chemo that Mckeen wants me to have. So, I told her I needed another week to make a decision. While we were still at the office, Mom could just tell that I was in turmoil as to what decision to make. She asked me how I felt about having people come over and pray tonight and I agreed. I told her who I wanted and Dad made the phone calls. Not one of them said no and rearranged Friday night plans to be at my house at 6pm. It was awesome! I felt so blessed after the prayer meeting and felt the presence of the Lord.
Earlier in the day, Mom called the Dr. in Miami and made an appointment for me to get his opinion. He is an MD and also practices alternative medicine. He was actually willing to see me on Saturday. So, Mom and Ian took me down yesterday. He was very nice, but could not seem to answer our questions and all three of us did not feel good about it. I was glad that we were all feeling the same way. We were glad we went though, because we feel that the Lord has closed that door. He continues to close certain doors and it feels like He is directing us in the path He wants us to take. Time is of essence right now and I need to make a decision this week. My tumor markers came back and they were 9,000. They should be below 50. That painted a clear picture of what is going on inside my abdomen.
I am now confident that I will make the right decision no matter what, because ultimately the Lord is my healer.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Tuesday morning I called my doctor to let her know that I was extremely short of breath. I thought it was my abdomen again that needed to be drained. So, she sent me to the hospital to have it drained and to have a chest xray. It ended up being a very long day. After many xrays, they decided there wasn't enough fluid in my abdomen in one spot to drain. The risk of hitting an organ outweighed the benefits. There seemed to be several small pockets of fluid and by draining one of them was not going to give me any relief. We moved on to the chest xray, which showed that my right lung was pretty bad. So, they decided to drain the fluid off my lung. I went in for a thoracentesis around 4:00 on Tuesday and they drained a liter of fluid off my lung. No wonder I was so short of breath. I'm just praying that the fluid stays away and does not come back. I do not want to have to go through that agin. It was quite painful and very scary. As my lung began to re-inflate, it feels like you can't breathe. Nothing worse than not being able to breathe. It lasted about 30 minutes and was finally over. Darlene, my coworker and friend, was in with me the whole time. I was so thankful to have her there and try and calm me down to slow my breathing down. It's a whole different ball game being on the other side. I had a hard time keeping my oxygen level up after the procedure,so we were there for a while. They put me on oxygen to give my lung a little help and after about 2 hrs., it finally was able to hold.
Yesterday, I stayed in bed most of the day. I woke up feeling like I had been run over. My body just hurt everywhere. The emotional part takes a toll on you just as much as the physical part.
Maddie, came in my room last night and had a long talk with me. It is finally beginning to take a toll on her. She told me that it is scaring her that it has spread everywhere and that there is no cure for cancer. I reminded her that I am believing the Lord is going to heal me and she agreed. She began to tell me about all the stories in the bible of when the Lord healed people. She said, remember the one that died and then he raised him from the dead? I said, yes honey. And she said, He might even do that mom. He might raise you from the dead. You might get to see what heaven looks like and the streets of gold and then come back and tell us all about it. I told her that I hoped that wouldn't happen. She said she misses spending time with me and that she prays all the time that I would be able to walk a little further or stand just a little longer. It was a very hard conversation, but one I will never forget. She is a special little girl and I know the Lord is going to do something out of all of this.
Please continue to pray for my complete healing! And keep my family in your prayers as well.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

This has been a rough week. I'll start back with Monday. I went to my oncologist at the recommendation of my doctor in Texas, to see if she would be willing to give me an infusion called Herceptin. I have receptors on my cancer cells which shows that I am HER 2 positive. This drug will block those receptors so that they will stop replicating these cancer cells. If she would give me the infusion, then it would save me a trip to Texas. She agreed to give it to me, but also recommended another chemo drug. I have been very confused as to what to do. I feel like this thing is out of control inside of me and something has to stop it quickly. So, I have been praying as to what to do. My doctor in Texas does not want me to do it as of yet. I have started the UK protocol and he would like to give that a chance. But, waiting on that makes me nervous. I still didn't have an answer from the Lord by Friday when I was to get the infusion, so I told them I would take the Herceptin, but I was still trying to decide on the chemo. I got the Herceptin yesterday and seemed to tolerate it well until after I had been home for a little bit. I started to get nauseous and took a pill to help with that. I slept for a little bit, but when I woke up, I was still nauseous and soon began to throw up. I guess this is common and usually only happens with the first dose. I hope that's the case. I will get the Herceptin once a week for three weeks and one week off.
My other problem is my pain. It just doesn't seem to be getting any better. Just seems to be getting worse. I have increased my pain medicine, but nothing seems to completely take it away. Being in pain constantly begins to take a toll on you physically and emotionally.
Please pray that I will make the right decision as far as the chemo goes and that my pain will subside.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

I'm sorry I have not blogged in several days. I just have not felt very good at all. I got home Friday night and the flight went well, although it took everything out of me. I have been so weak since I came home and have been sleeping a lot. Today I got dressed and did a few things around the house. I have just felt wiped out and needed to physically and emotionally rest. The kids are in VBS this week at our church and are having a wonderful time. I'm glad that has kept them busy and kept them from seeing me so under the weather. Just please continue to pray for strength to continue this battle as I prepare to start on the new protocol from the UK.
I am also asking for prayer for my sister in law, Jennifer. She is 10 weeks pregnant and has been in the hospital several times because of dehydration. She can't seem to quit vomiting and has lost 17 pounds, of which she did not have to loose. She and my brother have tried for almost three years to get pregnant again and it has been a real struggle for her. Please pray for her and her baby's health. After talking to my brother today, he and I both feel that we are being attacked by every angle. We are convinced that the devil is not happy with our faith in God and he is even more determined to break us all. Please keep my entire family in your prayers as we come together as a family to fight this battle against evil.

Friday, June 11, 2010

My family is gone and I am left here alone until my flight this evening. Even though I will see them tomorrow, I cried as I watched them out the window drive away. It's too quiet here without them. I'll be so glad to all be home tomorrow and get back to our daily routine.
The plan for now is that I will come out here once a month for chemo. I am going to get an IV of minerals and amino acids that I have been getting out here at home. There is a doctor in Ft. Lauderdale that will give it to me. Dr. Kotsanis wants me to get it three times a week. I'm hoping to find an alternative doctor closer to home. This IV is used for cancer and some patients have used it alone for their cancer treatment and have done really well. I will also start on a treatment from the UK when I get home. It is a plant based serum that I will take by mouth along with a very strict diet of only certain foods that I can eat. The man has won a nobel peace prize for his work in curing stage 4 cancer patients that have been told to go home and die. So, between these three things, hopefully I will get results.
I forgot to tell you that the other night Maddie was laying in bed with me and she sat up and held my hand and said, "Mom, I have to tell you something and I'm not sure how to tell you". She went on to tell me that she googled how to cure cancer and that she found out you can't. She didn't know if I knew that and she felt like I needed to know. She was trying to be the strong one delivering me this bad news. I was stunned! I told her that I knew that, but asked her who was my physician? She said, Jesus, and I said yes. I am trusting that the Lord is going to heal me even though they say you can't cure cancer. She never ceases to amaze me!
My parents are still in Virginia and my sisters are on their way home from Virginia today. So, Shelby and Darlene will pick me up from the airport tonight and stay with me so I'm not alone. Ian will be home tomorrow with the kids. Please pray for safe driving and flying for me. Pray that we will all be home together safely as a family tomorrow.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Chemo went much better yesterday for a change! No vomiting, just very tired. I think I slept most of the day. But I was so happy not to be sick. I woke up feeling pretty good today, which is our last day here. I fly out tomorrow night and Ian, Shane and the kids leave sometime tomorrow to drive home. We have a lot of packing up to do, so I'm glad I'm not sick.
My recall healing went really well on Tuesday. She said we accomplished a lot and I felt the same way. The last two days, the fluid in my abdomen seems to have gotten way worse. I feel like I am back to where I was when I had it drained two and a half weeks ago. Now, this morning, it feels like it has gone down a little. We have been weighing me at the doctors office, but it is difficult to tell because I have been consistently loosing weight. I have no appetite at all and nothing sounds good to me. So, I am probably loosing weight from not eating, but hard to tell if I'm gaining from the fluid.
I go to Dr. Kotsanis today to have laser treatment on my lymph system for the last time and I have started taking some homeopathic supplements to help with the drainage as well. Hopefully this will all help the fluid decrease.
Please pray for my flight home tomorrow as well as Ian and the kids on the road. Pray that it is on time and a smooth flight. I am nervous about getting sick. I will be flying by myself, so please pray! I'm thinking positive and trusting the Lord! Can't wait to be home tomorrow night and see all of you soon!

Monday, June 7, 2010

No chemo today! He said I have been to sick and weak to get it again so soon. We did laser treatment on my lymph system again and I will probably get chemo on Wednesday and that will be it this week before I go home on Friday. I was happy to go home and be with my kids. We actually took them to a waterpark that is kind of like Calypso Bay at home. They have been wanting to go and I wasn't about to sit in the room while they were having fun. I couldn't go on the rides, but I sat in a lounge chair and Ian got me in an inner tube to go down the lazy river with them. Even though I couldn't do everything with them, I was there and that's what is important. They were happy that I was watching them go down the slides. We made memories and that's what is important to me. I had a great time with them. Ian took Maddie to the mall tonight to return a game at game stop and Parker and I snuggled in bed and watched a movie. He fell asleep in my arms and nothing made me happier.
Tomorrow afternoon I have another recall healing session. The first one went well and I have started to figure out what emotional events in my life have caused this nasty cancer. It's very interesting how she figures out everything. Pray that I move forward in that healing process.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Chemo continues to be a real challenge for me. Friday was another rough day. I am still getting pretty sick and vomiting. Tomorrow I get it again and I'm having a hard time keeping my head up. Knowing what's coming is not fun. I did however have a pretty descent day today. We took the kids to the Dallas aquarium because it is inside and it is really hot out here. I had to keep sitting down and resting, but enjoyed being with my kids and husband. We came back to the hotel and after taking a rest, I went in the pool with them. So, today was a good day, but thinking about tomorrow is constantly in the back of my head. I keep trying to tell myself that maybe it won't be as bad tomorrow, but I'm having a hard time convincing myself. My kids have been such good sports and I'm so thankful to have Shane here to help. When I'm sick, Shane takes them to the pool and plays with them. They are perfectly content with the pool. It makes me mad though, because I want to be having fun with them. So, again, I know I need to think positively, but struggling with that right now. Keep praying!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

I had a rough night last night. I did not sleep much because my pain was so bad. But, I woke up this morning to my kids and husband walking into my room. What a way to wake up! They crawled in bed with me and we just snuggled together. That's the best therapy! However, I have continued to be in a lot of pain all day. My back and abdomen is just really bothering me.
I hated to see my mom go tonight. We have had a good time together and I am going to miss her greatly. There is nothing like your mom taking care of you when your sick no matter how old you are. She just knows what to do. I am blessed beyond words to have her as my mom. I love you Mom!!!!
Tomorrow I get chemo again and I'm taking the kids to meet everyone. I'm excited to show them off. Please pray that I get a good nights sleep, my pain is better and that chemo goes well tomorrow.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Chemo went well yesterday. I was tired, kind of felt like the flu and was nauseous at bedtime, but overall, it was much better than last week. Thank the Lord. The fluid in my abdomen seems to be staying about the same. I have definitely accumulated fluid since I had it taken off last Monday, but it is not anywhere as bad as it was. And it seems to remain the same from day to day. So, something must be working. Besides the chemo, they have been doing laser therapy on my lymph system trying to get it to drain. Hopefully between the chemo and that, it will start to decrease.
My aunt Lauren flew in Monday night and leaves early tomorrow morning. We have had a good time with her. She and mom can make anyone laugh. Mom also leaves tomorrow night. And Ian, Shane and the kids left today to head out here. They should be here sometime on Thursday. I can't wait to wrap my arms around both of them. It's been almost two weeks since I have seen them and I am ready!
Tomorrow I have an appointment for what is called recall healing. I have not done it before, but it is working on the emotional part of all of this. Please pray that my mind would be open to what hurts I have had in the past. I really believe that emotional stress or trauma has alot to do with cancer, as well as other diseases. I will have to have four sessions of this and the first is tomorrow.
Thank you all for continuing to pray and for sending me your words of encouragement. I look forward to your comments on my blog and facebook. Most of the time, it is just what I need.
Love you all!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Today I woke up in quite a bit of pain and it's my anniversary. Bummer! I called Ian to tell him happy anniversary and my brother in law, Shane, answered the phone. He said Ian was out running an errand. Which I thought was odd, but I said ok. I called him on his cell phone and it went straight to his voice mail, which was also odd. But, I really didn't thick much about it. About 10:30, Ian called me and said that he had sent me a gift and it should be arriving any minute. He just wanted to make sure that we were in the room. I couldn't figure out what else he was sending me because he already sent me flowers yesterday. About two minutes later there was a knock at the door. Mom opened the door and in walks Ian! My mom gasped and I couldn't see the door and didn't want anyone to see me because I was still in my pajamas and looked terrible. I finally looked up and there he was. I couldn't believe my eyes. My mom was already crying and I was soon to follow. The girls at work raised money, bought him a ticket yesterday and got him a room at this hotel. I was so excited I didn't know what to do with myself. Meanwhile, Maddie had her volleyball tournament at home that Shane and my sisters, nephews, Darlene and Shelby were at supporting her. And she got 2nd place! Woo!Hoo! I am completely overwhelmed by all of this. This is the best gift I have ever received! We have today until tomorrow at 11:00 and he gets on the plane again to go home. Thank you girls for all you have done for me! I will never forget this! I love you all!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Well, I was suppossed to chemo today, but there is a God! My doctor decided to give me a break. I have been too sick this week. He is leaving for Chicago tomorrow and will be gone through the weekend. He didn't want to be gone and me get too sick. I needed a break because this chemo is starting to really kick my butt. I got laser treatment on my lymph system yesterday to help drain the fluid. Some of the fluid has returned, but doesn't seem to be returning quite as fast as the last time I had it drained. I have had no nausea today!!!! My pain is a little better, but is still there. If I stay still, I don't have pain, but when I move my abdomen really hurts. You don't realize how much you move everything around that area until it hurts. My spirits are much better today. Of course, it's easier to lift your spirits when your feeling better. My next chemo treatment is scheduled for Tuesday, so be praying! Tomorrow I am getting some IV vit. C, laser treatment and some treatment to help with my back pain.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Yesterday was a really bad day. I got chemo in the morning and then had to drive an hour and a half away to a hospital to have the fluid drained from my abdomen. They drained 4 liters of fluid, which is about 12 pounds. I am so sick from the chemo and from loosing that much fluid that I vomited all the way back to the hotel. I have a great deal of pain in my abdomen as well. My mom was so good with me. She does not do well when her kids are in pain, but I was so proud of her. She was a real trooper! She never left my side and was up with me several times in the night. I have stopped throwing up today. But, I am very weak. As long as I stay still, I don't have pain, but when I move it hurts. I would have to say that yesterday was the lowest of the lows. I'm not sure how it could get any worse. I'm trying so hard to keep my spirits up and just keep asking the Lord, how much more can I take. Please pray for endurance to get through this battle for my life.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

I am back from Texas, but will be leaving again tomorrow evening for three weeks. I have to get chemotherapy twice a week for three weeks to be aggressive with this cancer. I spoke to my radiologist last week and he reread my pet scan. The radiologist at Good Sam read it wrong and the cancer is on my omentum, which is the lining of my intestines. It is also on my diaphragm. Although it does not appear in my breast or bones, it is in a lymph node. Which is an improvement. It was in several lymph nodes to begin with. I will be going with my Mom tomorrow and she will stay with me for a week and a half and then Ian is driving out with the kids as soon as Maddie gets out of school and they will be with me the next week and a half. Maddie is having a hard time and we felt like Ian just needed to be home with the kids until she finished school. They are excited about coming out and seeing where I have been going all the time. On the other hand, she is not happy about me leaving tomorrow.
My chemo changed this past time to three new chemo drugs and they have made me pretty sick. The thought of getting on the plane tomorrow is making me sick. I am also having alot of pain in my abdomen. If you could just pray that I feel well enough to fly tomorrow and that I can get my pain under control. My emotions are at an all time low, as you can probably imagine. Please continue to pray for my physical and emotional healing as I continue on this journey.
I will take my computer with me so that I can keep you updated while I am out there.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

I know I haven't blogged in a while, but I have had a lot going on and needed to gather all my information before I posted. As, you know, I have had off 14 days since my last treatment and had great news the last time I left Texas. I was feeling good, except I had put on a few pounds. I wasn't really thinking anything of it, but as the days went by, I began to get really uncomfortable in my abdomen and was continuing to gain weight. I made it through all the fun birthday stuff and mothers day, but told Jamie that I just felt like something was wrong. By this past Monday, I had put on 9 lbs. in a week and a half and my abdomen was very distended. I called my doctor in Texas and he wanted me to go the ER. Reluctantly, I did. Ian and I dropped the kids off with my Mom and went to the hospital. They did a CT scan of my abdomen and then told us that the cancer had spread to the lining of my intestines. The ER doctor called my surgeon and he said there was nothing he could do for me, but pain management. They wanted to admit me for the night, but I told them to just send me home. I wasn't really in pain, just discomfort. Ian, Dad and myself were stunned. I never dreamed it was cancer after I had been doing so well. I called my doctor in Texas and he said he wanted them to test the fluid that was on my abdomen. So, I went to the surgeon the next day and he ordered a test called a paracentesis. On Wednesday, I went in the morning for my pet scan and then for the paracentesis in the afternoon. They drained 2 liters of fluid off my abdomen which gave me some temporary relief. A week later, the fluid is back. I feel like I am pregnant. Yesterday, we got the results of the pet scan and the pathology report on the fluid. There was good and bad news on the pet scan. First the good news is that there is no cancer in my breast or bones. There is a small lymph node still showing some cancer, which is an improvement. It did not show cancer on the lining of my intestines, but on my diaphragm. At this point, I am so confused as to where it really is. The CT scan says one thing and the pet scan says another. It's so hard to know what to believe. I am happy to know that the cancer had definitely improved in the original spots, but disappointed that it is in my diaphragm. At least I know that what I was doing was working. We just have to figure out where this came from. Yesterday, I sent my blood and fluid to Germany to be tested. They will try and isolate the cancer cells and test different chemotherapy drugs on it to see which drug the cancer is most sensitive too. This way, it will tell my doctor the best meds to use.
Ok, so now I'm sure you want to know how I'm doing. Monday night, I was in shock and disbelief. When the doctor walked out of my room in the ER, I said to my Dad and Ian, I'm not going to beat this. I couldn't even cry. I just sat there staring. They didn't know what to say to me either. We went home and I couldn't hardly sleep, so I got up and started reading my Bible. I was drawn to Psalm 91 and kept praying. The last verse in Psalm 91 says He promises me long life. Psalm 118:17 says, I will not die, but I will live to proclaim what the Lord has done for me. I believe He can and will do a miracle in my body. This is not beyond anything that He can do. I cried a lot that night and I have done really well the rest of the week. I have a peace about all of this and I'm not fearful. I may be miserable for a little while, but I will make it through this.
I told Maddie yesterday, which was the part I was dreading. As soon as I got out the phrase, it had spread, she burst into tears. She never knew it had spread past my breast from the beginning. My heart broke as she cried so hard. I looked at her and said, Mommy's not going anywhere. I don't think I could have said this to her two months ago. But, I believe I'm going to be healed and felt confident in saying that to her. I hate this for her, but I know she's going to be alright and be stronger for it. It's not the way I wanted her to be strong, but we can use it the best we can. Fortunately the summer is almost here and she won't have the pressures of school to deal with. Parker on the other hand doesn't really get the whole thing. He still prays at dinner, God, make my mommy better. And he loves to tell me what I can and can't eat. He knows things that have sugar and tells me that I can't have a bite of it because it's not good for cancer. He's such a happy little thing and just keeps going on like nothing has changed. I've tried to keep normalcy as much as possible and it seems to be working.
I leave for Texas today with Jenn and we will be back tomorrow night. I will take all the prayers I can get. So, please continue and don't give up on me yet.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Ok, so I have lots to tell you. I will begin with the flight to Texas. It was a flight like no other. It started out with this couple sitting in front of us that could not keep their hands off each other. They finally got up and went to the bathroom together and Mom wanted to put a note on their seat to get a room. It was ridiculous, but we got a good laugh out of it. Everything was going smoothly with the flight until the last half hour or so. The pilot came on and said we would be landing in about 20 min., which ended up being 30 min., and then about 2 min. later, he came on and told the stewardesses to take a seat now. We knew something was up then. He had mentioned a thunderstorm, but it was really a very bad thunderstorm. The plane started rolling from side to side and taking little nose dives. At one point we came out of our seats and people let out a scream. It was lightning and no visibility outside. It was like something you would see in the movies. I looked at mom and said, I am not going to die from a stupid plane crash! I just sat there and prayed. I started to get really nauseous and mom was looking for the barf bag. Thankfully, I didn't have to use it. We finally got through the storm and as soon as we came through the storm clouds, there was a beautiful rainbow on the otherside. I thought that was pretty cool. When I saw it, I thought the Lord was saying, I was right here all the time. As He always is. We had the same stewardesses on the way home last night and I asked them if they were nervous. They said they got a little nervous and very nauseous. They then told us that the plane had been struck by lightning. So, we really did make it through the storm with God waiting on the otherside.
That was the beginning of our trip. Mom and I went to chemo the next morning and everything went as planned. My sugar dropped a little lower than usual and I felt pretty yucky for a little bit until my sugar came back up. But, everything went well. My Dr. wanted to measure my tumor before I left and I was anxious to see what he thought. He was all smiles as soon as he began to feel for the tumor. Three weeks ago when he tried to measure the tumor, it was almost impossible. The tumor was still so large and it was difficult to feel the edges of it. He could now easily feel the edges and the measurements were smaller than when I had my consultation with him. That was two weeks before I started treatment. He kept saying, "this is unbelievable, this is a miralcle. I am so happy for you". Not that he didn't think this was going to work, but the difference in three weeks was better than he thought it would be. Mom, Lindsay, Dr. Kotsanis and I just looked at each other and smiled big smiles. I was so excited as I walked out the door. I not only got good news, but I have 2 weeks off. I was on a high!
Mom and I had lunch and went back to the hotel so I could lay down. I didn't feel very good this time. I think maybe it was because I got treatment closer together. But my good news totally outweighed how I felt. We got on the plane last night and had a wonderful flight home and I was glad to be home in my bed by 11:00. That was a very quick and eventful 31hrs.

Monday, May 3, 2010

I leave for Texas in about an hour or so and thought I should give an update. I am going with Mom this week and Ian will be home with the kids. I just got home on Friday and am going again. As much as I don't want to get on a plane again, it will be worth it. I will be with my family Thursday for Jamie's birthday instead of sitting in a hotel room in Texas. I would much rather be with my family. And, I now get not 8, but 14 days off. I was scheduled for next Thursday, but my doctor will be here in Hollywood teaching on the treatment he is giving me. So, I get the week off! I am looking forward to two weeks at home.
I have felt kind of yucky today, so please pray for strength. I just finished reading Psalms 91, and I am going to rest under His wings and I know He will provide for me.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

So, today I fly to Texas for my 9th treatment. I have a heavy week ahead of me. I get chemo on Thursday and fly home Friday. Then I changed my schedule for next week so that I could be home for Jamie's birthday. I will fly again on Monday with my Mom, have chemo on Tuesday and fly back Tuesday night. This will be the first week that I will fly home on the same day as chemo. I think it will be good because I have been doing well on the day of chemo. It's the next two to three days that I don't feel well. So, this way I can be home in my own bed. The good part, is that I will be home for 8 days before I have to fly out again.
I also woke up with a sore throat yesterday and this morning I have a full blown nasty cold. Not a good time to have a cold when I am getting chemo so close together. So, if you would please pray that everything goes smoothly.
On another note, my Mom's aunt called her this week with good news. She is friends with someone that works for Mercy flights, which is funded by the American Cancer Society to fly cancer patients for treatment. She called my Mom this week and told her that they would fly me and another person to Texas on them. I will have to fly with Delta, which means a layover in Atlanta, but it will start once I am not going every week. We were already booked for the next three trips, so it will start after that. What a blessing that was. Plane tickets have gone way up in price this month with summer around the corner. All we have to do is tell her the dates we need to fly and she takes care of all the booking.
Ian will be going with me today and the kids will be here with my Mom and my aunt Lauren. We will be missing my Nana's 87th birthday party, but will be thinking of everyone while we are gone.
Keep the prayers coming this week and pray that my blood work stays good so that I can get my chemo treatments as planned.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Jamie and I made it to Texas and had a good flight. I will get chemo at 10:00 tomorrow morning. This will be my 8th treatment. That's hard to believe. I have had a pretty good week and am hoping for another good one. My blood work came back and is holding out. My white and red blood cells are still in normal range, but on the low side. But, by this time last go around, I had no white blood cells. They have dropped a little more each week, but I'm still in normal range. I'm hoping to maintain where I'm at now. The lower they get, the worse I usually feel. Just grateful to be where I'm at. I have scheduled my petscan for May 12th and am anticipating the results of that. I am believing they are going to be good results. Until then, I will continue to go every week and get chemo. I have tested my ph for the last four days and have consistently been between 7.5 and 8.0. I am so excited to be able to maintain such a high ph! Maybe that's why I have felt pretty good.
Anyways, pray that all goes well tomorrow and I will give you an update when I get home.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Well, I'm home from my 7th treatment. Three more and he will order my pet scan. Looking forward to seeing the results and knowing they are going to be good. Chemo went well. I did not feel too bad at all this time. My doctor was pleased once again with my progress. He smiled big when I told him what my ph was. He was again pleased with my lungs and the lesions of the skin are GONE! He could not find the lymph node in my clavicle that was very easy to feel and could not feel any under my arms, although they were difficult to feel from the beginning. He did not measure my tumor this time because it is so difficult. But, feeling it, he said it has definitely shrunk in size. There is alot of soft tissue now and it's hard to find the margins between the tumor and my scar tissue from previous surgeries. There was no soft tissue to be found a couple of weeks ago. Needless to say, I was very pleased with my progress as well as Dr. K. Depending on the pet scan results, he will change me to going every other week or once a month for treatment. It will be so nice not to have to go every week. Although, I have become very attached to all of the girls out there and will miss them. Begin to pray for miraculous results in three weeks on my scan. I want it to shock everyone! And believing it will!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Well, I have good news this morning! My ph level is 7.7! I only needed to be 7.4 for the cancer to be dead. And I have surpassed that! I feel like I have really accomplished something. It was nice to show my little girl this morning and explain to her what that meant. She wrapped her arms around me and buried her little head in my chest and was so happy. I am excited to be able to tell my doctor tomorrow the good news.
I was also able to go to Maddie's game last night and was not miserable. I enjoyed watching her play. Thank you for all your prayers. I had a better day yesterday.
The not so good news, which is not the end of the world. But, my hair is starting to fall out. It's not coming out in clumps, but is definitely thinning. You wouldn't be able to tell if you saw me. But the floor in my bathroom tells the truth after my shower. I'm hoping it's just going to thin and not all fall out. I've been through this before, so it's not quite as traumatic this time. But, none the less, no one wants to loose their hair. Ian says, bald is beautiful. I don't know about that. But, he still loved me when I was bald last time.
Anyways, it's been a good morning with my ph level. I leave tonight with my Dad for Texas. I will be home on Friday. Pray that treatment goes well.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

I'm asking for prayer today. I have been sick for the last two days and have been very discouraged. I don't know if the chemo is beginning to accumulate and it is going to get harder, or I'm just having an off week. Jamie reminded me that this is how I did last time. The chemo is different this time, so I just don't know what to expect. However, Maddie has her first volleyball game tonight at 7:00. Afternoons and evenings are really difficult for me. Please pray that I will feel well enough to go and enjoy her game. I am going one way or the other. It would just be nice to feel good.
I also am leaving again tomorrow evening for treatment on Thursday. My Dad will be going with me this time and Ian will stay home with the kids. Hopefully I will find out this week when he is going to do a pet scan on me again. Maddie has been praying every night for the results to be good. She is very concerned about this scan and asks me quite alot when I will have the test done. Please pray for her peace of mind. She is doing great in school and has an awesome teacher who is very attentive to her needs. We are so thankful for a loving, caring teacher who is investing time in her life. Parker is also doing well in school and also has an awesome teacher. She loves on him and spends one on one time with him making cards for my coming home each week. We have been blessed beyond words to have the teachers we have for our kids. The Lord knew this was going to happen and knew who they needed to help them walk through this journey.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Just a quick update. The flight went very well. Thank you for all your prayers. We were told it was a full flight. I usually get us switched to bulkhead, but I decided just to leave it as it was. We were row 30 of 32. Two people did not show up and one of them was next to me. I was so happy! I was able to move over a seat and lay down on the seat next to me and sleep. And, we landed a half an hour earlier than expected. We actually had to wait a few minutes on our ride. So, again, thank you for your prayers for a good flight.
As far as how I feel, I'm not nauseous today, just really tired. I'll take tired anyday over sick. Just glad to be home with my family.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Well, this trip started out with a bang! We were supposed to leave at 5:20 pm last night and get into Dallas around 7:00 pm their time. We didn't get to the hotel until almost 11:00pm Dallas time. The flight was delayed due to weather and then we had to take an alternate route around the storm, which took us to the west side of Texas and then back into Dallas. The pilot kept coming on the intercom giving us updates. I finally said to Ian, "this is the never ending flight". We were just glad we didn't have a connecting flight. Other than a little pain in my back, I felt pretty good for such a long day.
I finished my sixth chemo treatment today! Yeah! One more down! He gave me a little more than 15% strength. Not quite 20%. 25% is our final goal. However, Dr. K was very pleased with my progress and gave me a big smile when he listened to my lungs. He said that he could hear good breath sounds in every lobe. That was very encouraging! The best news is that I woke up this morning and tested my ph level and by the grace of God I was between 7.0 and 7.5! First I cried and called my parents immediately, of which neither one of them answered their phones. When mom called me back she was upset because all she could tell was that I was crying on the message and she couldn't understand me. Needless to say, both of them were ecstatic! Once I got over the short time of tears, I was beaming with joy!!!! I have been working hard to get my ph up and I have made very good progress. I think I'm tooting my own horn a little bit. That's ok, I think I earned that. So, for those of you who are just coming in on the blog I will quickly explain. At a ph of 7.0 the cancer can no longer grow and spread anywhere. At 7.4 it is dead!! I am determined to kick this thing to the curb! There is no room for it anymore. I am determined to not give this beast an environment that it likes. Going, going, gone. Right aunt Mayda?
I was on a high this morning and then crashed after chemo. I have felt pretty sick today and stayed in bed most of the day. I finally got up and Ian and I walked across the street to Bass pro and had dinner. I could hardly eat anything but a baked potato. Even though it has been a tough day after chemo, the morning far outweighed everything!
We leave tomorrow afternoon and will be home early evening. Please pray there is no delay in the flight and all goes well. Flying home is exhausting on me when everything goes well. I just need to get home to bed and snuggle with my kids.
Good night and I will talk to you all soon.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

On my way to Texas for treatment again. Ian is going with me this time and my mom is staying with my kids. Not wanting to leave my kids, but not much of a choice. I've had a pretty good day today. I usually crash in the afternoons, so please pray that I feel good for the flight. I'll let you know how treatment goes when I get home Friday. Thanks for all the prayers!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

I had such a great day with my family! I woke up feeling pretty good this morning and was able to go to church. Lisa sang a song today and in the song it said He lives to heal! I stood there with tears streaming down my face as I finally realized that He really wants to heal me. I am so grateful for what He has done for me, especially today! After church we went to my parents house to spend the day with my whole family. We had a delicious meal that was based on my diet.{Ha! Ha!} We then had an Easter egg hunt with all the kids, went through all the candy, dyed Easter eggs, the kids swam and had a great day. Other than some back pain, which I took pain meds for, I felt really good today. I am so thankful for today with my husband, kids, parents, sisters, brother and nephews. It's amazing how we take for granted the time we spend with each other. When you face something like this, you start to really value and appreciate every moment you have. I pray that all of you were able to celebrate the Lord's resurrection today and enjoyed time with your families.

Friday, April 2, 2010

I'm home from Texas. Five treatments down! My doctor was very pleased with my progress. My ph was 6.9!!!! I'm almost to 7.0 and the cancer can no longer grow. That was very exciting! I did very well yesterday, the day of treatment. But, today has been a little rough. I don't know if the plane ride home just takes alot out of me or what. But, I have been in bed almost all day just feeling like I have the flu, achy and like my head is going to explode. It was a quick trip and this is what I will be doing now. I think it's just alot and runs me down. I'm praying that I will feel better by Sunday so that I can enjoy Easter with my kids.
When I got home today, my kids were taking a walk with my mother in law and when my little boy saw me, he froze and yelled Mommy! He started to run to me and squeezed me so tight and kept kissing and hugging me. Maddie was right behind him. That's the best feeling!
My doctor examined me where he injected chemo into my skin where the cancer had metastasized and he thinks it is gone. The skin is still healing because the chemo burned it. But, I was excited that he felt like it took care of it. I am so greatful for each little bit of progress. One thing at a time and I feel like I'm moving forward.
Please continue to pray for forward progress and that I will start to feel better.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

I will be leaving tomorrow evening for Texas again. I will have treatment on Thursday at 10:00 and fly home Friday morning. Please pray for a safe trip and that all goes well with my treatment. Ian will be at home with the kids. Parker does not want me to leave him again. He keeps asking me if I like to leave him. Hopefully he will understand better after this trip that they won't be as long each time. I keep telling him only two days, but he doesn't really get the concept of time. He just says it's alot of hours. I will post after treatment and let you know how everything went.

Monday, March 29, 2010

I know I'm a little late in writing this, but I'm home! I was so excited to be home with my kids that I haven't even looked at the computer. When we pulled up to the house on Friday, Jamie had the kids outside with a welcome home sign waiting for me. I have never been so excited to see my kids! I have enjoyed being with them this weekend, reading books, snuggling in bed and loving on them. My in laws came in yesterday and have taken them out for a little while, so I thought I would use a little quiet time to catch up on my blog.
The trip went well and I am now four chemo treatments down. We have the next three weeks scheduled. I will leave on Wednesday night, have treatment Thursday mornings and come home Friday. My mom and I will be going this time. Ian will stay home with the kids. We just felt it was too soon for both of us to leave them again. They were happy with the fact that Daddy would be staying with them. I think Ian will go with me every other time so it's not too much on the kids. Wednesday is coming quick and I will be gone again. As far as how I am feeling. Well, I did not feel real well the last two days. I was really run down Saturday and yesterday I was nauseous most the day. But, today I woke up feeling a little better. Hopefully I'll get a couple of good days before getting chemo again. My pain is a little better. It seems to come and go more than being constant. Hopefully it will continue to just go away.
I am back on all my supplements and strict diet. We had backed off a little bit because the doctor said it was too much on my body all at once. Please pray that my body will continue to be able to deal with all the change that it is going through and begin to heal itself. My goal is to get my ph level up. I need to be in an alkaline state because the cancer cannot live that way. It likes to be acidic. If I can get my ph to be 7.0 then the cancer will quit growing. If it is 7.4 the cancer is dead. I am at 6.5 right now. This is a major goal. So, please pray that I can get to 7.4 because then this monster will not be able to thrive inside of me. I am going to kick him out one way or the other!
Thank you again for all your prayers and support!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Thank you for everyone's comments on my blog and on facebook. They are so encouraging and usually make me cry tears of joy that you all care. You make me feel at home reading your comments which is where I would like to be right now. Two more days and I will be home for 5 days before leaving again.
I woke up this morning in alot of pain in my chest and back. I took pain medicine and mom suggested that we go down in the jacuzzi. The hot water on my back at night in my shower seems to help. So, we did and it did feel good. We stayed in for quite a while and then sat in a lounge chair in the sun and soaked up the beautiful weather that we had today. We decided to get dressed and go get some lunch at this nice little family run bakery. They have good homemade salads and soups. It's hard saying no to all the yummy bakery stuff, but the lunch is worth it. We then walked down the little main street and went into a few shops before finally coming home. I did really well and it was so beautiful out today. It was good for me to get out. And then, the night begins to set in. Nights seem to be the hardest right now. The pain begins and the shortness of breath. Oh, by the way, the nurse called today with the results of my chest xray. Not what I was hoping for, but still believing! I now have a pleural effusion on the right and left lobe of my lungs and fluid inside my right lung as well. The pleural effusion is fluid between the lung and the sac around my lung. I knew I had the right pleural effusion which was mild and it is now increased to moderate. Needless to say, I was disappointed. But, it does explain why I am so short of breath. Just taking a shower completely wears me out. The doctor is not going to take any action at this point, but will be watching closely. This is just side effects of metastasized cancer and hopefully it will respond to the chemo.
Please continue to pray for pain relief and peace. I'm on this roller coaster that is easy when your feeling good, but when you start to feel lousy, it's much harder.
I forgot to tell you that I did have a wonderful surprise today. We had a knock at the door this morning and there was a box of flowers for me. All the way from Romania! My little Rebecca sent me flowers to encourage me with the nicest card. It put such a big smile on my face and tears down my cheeks. Thanks Bex! I love you soooo much!

Treatment in Texas (a photo update)

Monday, March 22, 2010

Three treatments down and who knows how many to go. But, I'm three down. I feel like I have accomplished something! I did pretty well today. My blood sugar has become pretty predictable. It has taken exactly 22 minutes each time for my blood sugar to get below 44. It makes things go a little smoother to know when it's coming and everyone gets ready for the next step. Ian and Mom are with me every minute praying and supporting me. I'm so grateful to have them here. I think I have mentioned before that it has metastasized to the skin on my breast. He decided today to inject chemo directly into the lesions. I knew it would be uncomfortable. But, it was pretty painful. I just closed my eyes and gripped the chair. I felt like my skin was on fire. It continued to burn for several hours later. Needless to say, I am not looking forward to that again. I am also very short of breath and having to sleep sitting up to breathe. My pet scan had showed fluid on my lung, but minimal. So, I let him know today and he ordered a chest xray, which I have done. Hopefully we will have results tomorrow. I'm praying that the fluid has not increased. I don't want to have to have my lung tapped. I was actually able to go get some lunch afterward before it hit me. I haven't been able to do that yet. We came back to the hotel and I slept for about two hours and actually felt pretty good when I woke up. I'm tired, but a little better than previous treatments. He is going to increase the amount of chemo on Thursday now that I am beginning to tolerate it a little better. I'm praying that goes well since we have to get on the plane very early Friday morning. Going home to see my precious kids will be worth it no matter how I feel. There is good news! When I woke up today, it felt like the tumor has shrunk a little. Not gone by any means, but, I actually have soft tissue spots. I looked at my mom and burst into tears. I said "Mom, I think it has shrunk just a tiny bit". We both looked at each other with tears streaming down our face. I was telling Robyn today that this time is so different as far as the tumor goes. The first time, I had the mastectomy first and never had any pain and the tumor was gone. This time, it is very tangible and I am constantly feeling it to see if it has changed. It makes it harder that I am living with this thing inside of me. So, to feel a small change was a milestone that I so needed today. The doctor told us today that I will continue to have one treatment a week for the next four weeks and then he will order the pet scan and re-evaluate at that point. Three more days until we head home. Can't wait!!!!! Please continue to pray that my pain will go away in my back and chest. Nights seem to be the worst.