Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Another conversation.....

Two weekends ago.... while visiting my Sister at her house, I was doing a lil more complaining.....

Me : "I'm only 41 years old and look at me! I'm on heart medication, Thyroid medication, asprin therapy and now cancer medication too......and I will be for the rest of my life .....It just doesn't seem fair sometimes...."

Her : "I hate to break this to you but your not 41 years old!"

Me : "I'm not? How old am I then?"

Her : "Well, I'll be 45 next week so that makes you 43 now."

Me : " had to go and burst my bubble didn't ya?"

I used to call those BLONDE I get to blame it on CHEMO BRAIN and I just read that the effects of chemo can last as long as 10 years....GOOD..... That means I get to be 41 a lil while longer! lol lol lol

Monday, January 29, 2007

A pick up truck and a bald chick.....

So, I'm driving along the road with my 14 year old son and he tells me that Dad wants to get a vette...a corvette. So for an instance I panick......a vette? Only men who are going through some kind of mid life crisis in their mid 40's (which he is 48) get vettes right? My Fathers mid life crisis not only included a vintage convertible mustang but another girlfriend to boot....YIKES!!!!

So when my Son and I meet up with Jim I casually ask if he is thinking about getting a corvette, and then explain where I got that idea from (lil Jimmy) and he starts to laugh at I ask, "Is this some kind of midlife crisis or something? What? Are you gonna want a girlfriend with hair now too??"

He takes a minute before answering me....I am secretly holding my breath....
He says, " No, all I ever wanted was a pick up truck and a bald chick and I've got that already!!!!" lol lol lol

I find out later it's my Son who wants his Dad to get a vette! Oy Veh!

All is right in my world again!!!

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Good times and a lil pole dancing! lol

Friday was my sister Kelly's 45 birthday and we all needed a girls night out! So with my goldy locks wig, my penciled in eyebrows, and my 47 eyelashes I went out to paint the town red! Since all the DH'S were up north ice fishing we had the weekend to do what we first stop was the casino.

While playing the slots a woman sat down next to me and proceeded to light up a cigarette and where does the smoke face of course, so I wave the smoke away and she takes notice (us reformed smokers are the worse.....oops my bad! lol) so she makes sure the next puff doesn't go my way....I feel bad now, so I share my secret....she immediately gets up and puts the cigarette out and asks if I'm ok and that she needs to quit smoking herself because she has diabetes and her doctor has already told her it's time to quit and that I am giving her the inspiration to do so and then asks if she can give me a hug....who doesn't love hugs right? We wish each other the best and go our separate ways.

Next stop a dance club.....I love to dance and couldn't wait until I was well and strong enough to get my groove thang up and out on the dance floor.....good Lord this place has elevated dance off I go! trying to pole dance and not loose ones wig turned out to be quite entertaining! lol I had a blast! So did all my girlfriends and even my sister let loose and pole danced...she the more conservative sister and it was fun to see her let go and have a blast.

2 couples take the table next to ours and while going to sit down one of the women bumps into my Cousin Bridget, she says excuse me and then makes a comment about 'girls night out huh?' So Bridget informs her of who the birthday girl is and that it's my first time out since finishing chemo...she informs us that she just finished chemo for her breast cancer in November...she had both breasts removed ....Stage IIIC....8 months of chemo and radiation but is doing very well now and is enjoying her new implants and then shared with us that she just got married 2 weeks goes on.

So Lisa and I take off to the bathroom to compare our battle scars, even though she opted for implants she still went ahead and had a full tummy tuck plus lypo....she's 46 and has no regrets....while in the bathroom another woman came in just as I was showing off my bald head and congratulated both Lisa and I on being survivors, then went to get one of her buddies whose MIL is battling breast cancer...needless to say it was a 'weep fest' but happy tears in that bathroom. I believe we are guided along through life and meet people who are put there to inspire us...I was inspired by Lisa and the other woman was inspired by me....we are all here to help on another through life...every story has a purpose.

Jim comes home from his ice fishing trip later this morning......I've got a lot of explaining to do! lol lol lol  Casinos and pole dancing..oh what a night! lol lol lol Needless to say, I had to spend my entire Saturday in bed recuperating from all that fun and I'm still a lil wiped out today.....Was it worth it? OH YEAH!!!!!!!! lol lol lol

Life is good and I am thankful!

Friday, January 26, 2007


Cancer and the memories
are starting to release me.
It does not invade my
every thought, my every sleep.
Time is letting me move on
life is just beginning for me
and I am thankful.

kmh 2007

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Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Nip, Tuck and other thoughts

It's been 3 weeks since my final chemo.....I have been going through lots of changes since then. I think because my entire focus was on getting through the surgery and the healing time, then on to the Chemo treatments, I didn't deal with the emotional side of cancer.....I didn't have the time or the energy to put much into that thought...I had a battle to win. Well, now that the battle is over and I was willing and able to drop the 'wall' I built up to protect me emotionally, I am now going though the emotional baggage that cancer can bring into a persons life.

I thought I was angry before when I was initially diagnosed....I went back and forth between anger and being totally numb in the beginning and now I am just really pissed off that I even had to go through this. Not that I thought I should be exempt from getting a serious illness or anything but from talking to other cancer survivors, I now know this is be pissed off. I am mad at the cancer itself, it took so much of me and I will have physical reminders of that the rest of my life, it took up a good amount of my 'time' this past year and I'm kind of pissed off about that, it took away from our oldest daughters wedding which was this past July where I bumped into that armoire in Jamaica and the first tumor let itself be known to me...I already new about the breast tenderness before our trip and even discussed it with my Primary Care Physician....I was told no problem, most likely peri-menopause.......HAH! I didn't listen to my intuition and it almost cost me my life....cancer only hit the first sentinel node outside of my left breast....I was very lucky I smacked into that armoire in Jamaica...I don't think I would of gone back to the Doctor if I hadn' there's a thought that sends a chill down my spine.

But at least being 3 weeks post chemo I am finally getting some of my strength back, I would say I am almost at 50/50 as far as that goes and I am starting to get more 'stubble' on my head that I know won't fall out like all the other stubble before's coming back snow white so far....not sure if I am going to return to my toe head blonde that I was born with (which later became more golden) or if I am going to be a 43 year old woman with all white/gray hair....not sure what I am going to end up with.......please let it be thicker than what I had and I won't complain if it comes back curly or at least a few waves to it! lol

After much thought I have decided that I will have the lift with a slight reduction on my right boob (aka the good/old boob) because the new boob (aka bad/old/tried to kill me boob) ended up being not as full as my right boob and after all I went through and only being 43, I want a little symmetry between the two. So far the Plastic Surgeon Dr. Hollywood, is booked until end of March, so I will have it done sometime after that then I will give my body some much needed rest and wait until mid Fall to have the new, reconstructed boob finished with the nipple and areola finished's a 2 part series, first the nipple reconstruction then heal time, then the tattooing will follow of the areola and nipple for coloring purposes.

I get better and stronger everyday and I am now dealing with the emotional side of it and I am finding my peace along the way....I have to keep reminding steps Kim, baby steps.

Monday, January 22, 2007

another 'bitch" session....hey I'm allowed! LOL

OK, now that I know angry is "normal" following every other emotion cancer can bring into ones life....I do feel better. I also know exactly why I am so has forever changed me....but living all these years is supposed to bring change and I know there were perks to getting this perkier, not trying to kill me anymore boobs, a full tummy tuck to reconstruct new said boob and I have managed to drop the 30 pounds of "baby" weight I have been carrying around for the last 14 years! lol lol lol 15 pounds before diagnosis with working out 3 times a week and then 15 pounds with the side effects of chemo and the general freak out since diagnosis.

The bad changes are not only that I am a total emotional wreck at this moment with half of it due to the big question "is my cancer going to come back?" but also I have been thrown into menopause during the chemo process....whole 'nother can of worms.....each one on there own are pretty intense to deal with but throw those two together and no wonder I'm a total wreck.....and on the physical changes...I am scarred from hip to hip (mind you my only other time I had stitches during my whole life was for childbirth reasons) and I am scarred in a football shaped pattern on my new breast, I will have some new scarring with the lift of the 'other' breast and more scarring for the nipple construction...I have no feeling in my fingertips and toes (
Peripheral neuropathy - ) kind of hard to keep your balance without being able to feel the bottoms of your feet, just lacing my own shoes now is difficult and frustrating.....trying to type is some kind of fun now too! lol ....will the 'feeling' come's another crap shoot....another wait and see. Not to mention that part of my tongue and the roof of my mouth is numb....perk about that is all food tastes blah to me now!! lol lol lol

Since meeting with Dr. Hollywood (Plastic Surgeon) I will be having the lift on the old girl in the next few weeks, he wants me to wait 6 to 8 weeks since my last chemo treatment (Jan 2). I'm OK with that.... plus my porta-cath will be taken out during that surgery and I am thrilled to see that removed from my chest wall! Then he wanted me to wait a few weeks before another surgery to make the nipple on my new boob, then waitto heal from that before tattooing the areola and nipple the color of my other set...I have decided I will do the lift now and the nipple/areola reconstruction next fall....I was robbed of last summer I want to really enjoy this one coming up.

So even though cancer has come and gone from my life and I am still dealing with all the residual effects and the permanent scarring to remind me....the alternative was death, I know that....but I have to allow myself time to grieve for what cancer has cost me and anger is part of the grieving process...I have heard that from other cancer survivors since my last entry and I am very thankful that you shared your insight with me and I can share that with others who will unfortunately follow in my footsteps until there is a cure....not only for breast cancer, but all cancer.

Now if I can just get through menopause without hurting lol lol!

Saturday, January 20, 2007

1-20-07 Where my head is at today (but not for long! Ü)

Ok, When I was first diagnosed with breast cancer I was pissed....I was beyond pissed....I thought all I had to do was get passed the 41st year of my life (The age I dreaded since loosing my own Father from complications due to alcoholism) so for what seems like that entire year of my life (41st) I held my breath, lived life cautiously, which is something that I never when my 42nd birthday rolled around I thought "Whewwww I made it! I am here for the long haul!" You see in my family (on both sides) you either die terribly young or you live to be a ripe old age of naughty! lol

My 42nd year came and went without incident (well not too many! lol) and then last February I turned was a big year for me..... our oldest daughter was getting married, she and her soon to be husband bought their very first house, our middle daughter was finally emerging from what I like to call the "dark side" (15-19) and started making decisions I always knew she was capable of making and life was better than ever....then July came and with July my worst fears came true....I had a disease that not only makes you very ill, it can kill you..I had breast cancer.... I remember having the flu the winter before and thinking to myself and praying.."God, I don't think I would be a very good sick person, I whine a lot and I hate that feeling of not feeling good" I had taken for good health.

Flu like symptoms......we are all very familiar with the way that feels....chemo is 100 times worse and I had 16 weeks of feeling crappy.... Uh oh.....I'm starting to sound bitter....I think I am pissed all over again....and I am pissed that I feel pissed....I should be very grateful for what my surgeons and my oncologist have done for me...I was not given a "It's too late" prognosis and I am finished with the worst part...the chemo but I can't seem to celebrate that fact yet, I am still to angry that I had cancer in the first this normal? I don't know I am a first time and hopefully last time cancer patient...I have nothing to compare this too....and I am not angry at God, or healthy people who are still running around taking life for grant it...I don't know why I am so pissed...sickness and death are part of the 'living" process but I seem to feel like I should of been pardoned........I wonder why that is? Maybe beating this cancer is my pardon and I will get passed this "PISSY" feeling soon and get on withwhat I am supposed to be! Right now I haven't been ready to do that......I have been hiding in my room since my last chemo treatment (almost 3 weeks ago)........shame on me!

When I write I tend to figure things out that my mind can't do without my fingers and my I do feel better since I started figuring this all out and writing this all down....I need to stop feeling as if I have been wronged....that is not something I am used to feeling and I need to get back to feeling blessed for every damn thing in my life.....I would really love to hear from other cancer survivors to see if they too went through similar feelings.... I also am an admitted control freak and would really love to know what else might be coming that could de-rail me later.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Abandoned shoes and blogs....

This blog/journal started out as a way for me to get back in touch with things that were important to me, when I was teenager filled with angst which I later figured out was pent up hostilities and rage from a sometimes wonderful childhood and a sometimes not so wonderful childhood...I used to write all the time. Mostly about love and the current relationship that I was in at the time. To the people that I would occasionally share some of my writing with, told me to continue writing, that I was good at getting "feelings" onto paper.

I stopped writing when the first child came further explanation needed to those that know how all consuming children can be and deserve to be.....what I didn't realize was how much of me I was giving up or how estranged from me I would become. Small price to pay for the joy of parenthood....I didn't even realize how much I  missed writing until I started it up again with this blog. I started out first testing the waters with glimpses into my past, then into figuring out my past and how it effected me and made me who I was becoming....we all bring so much of our past into who we are today...good or bad it's there.....this blog became very therapeutic for me and let me go deeper than I was willing to when I was seeing a the keyboard there are no eyes sizing you up and down, there is no glancing at the clock to see if "your time is up" you can write until you feel better which is what I do.

This blog also touched on my home life, the lives of my children and has basically also served as one long love letter to my Husband Jim. I have shared my poetry, my view of my world behind my camera lens and shared almost every detail of my experience of going from a breast cancer patient to a breast cancer survivor....although I feel 'stuck' in between the two right now.

Over the weekend I was perusing the blogs looking for new or new to me blogs and sometimes I just click on other peoples lists of other peoples journals if I like what I have read in theirs......birds of a feather kind of theory.......I came across so many abandoned journals with their last entry date and time posted then it's as if "poof" that life either stopped becoming so interesting that the owner just fled or their life became so busy that time was the issue at hand..either way they left their mark in J-Land then just packed up and left without any explanations....I for one can't see myself giving this blog up any time soon....the need to purge my thoughts to words is still there. while jumping from abandoned blog to abandoned blog I felt the same way I feel about a lone shoe one sometimes see discarded on the side of the road, I wonder about the owner, I wonder about the other shoe.....I feel it's loneliness (strange I know! lol) I feel bad for the abandoned blog..with its past just sitting out there for all the world to see but nothing of its present time, of its hopes for the future.

I guess I'm just feeling melancholy....I'm working through something that I can't explain right now, but you can bet when I will be right here in my blog as another chapter in the book of me.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Just be.......

It's been almost 6 months since cancer came uninvited into my life......a lot has happened and I have learned a lot about myself since then.

In the beginning I remember sitting quietly back and watching people that I love interact amongst themselves and I would wonder, "Am I going to still be around this time next year?" it was also the moment I really, truly realized that "life" goes on whether you're there to witness it or not.

I had to look into my children's faces and come to terms that I might never get to meet any of their children, just like my own Father missed out on meeting any of his grandchildren....those moments would bring me to tears.

I had to look into my Husbands eyes and see his fears too.... he could never bring himself to even say the words death or die.......on my bad days he would just look into my eyes and say, " Don't you go anywhere!" with tears about to brim over....God that man loves me and I am so very blessed to have him in my life...we have a great love!

Not once did my mind ever say "WHY ME?" I don't really understand that as a cancer me it almost hints at why me and not someone else? That is a terrible thought..I wouldn't want it to have been someone else. What I did say a lot was, "Ok, what do we do now?" and with some of the side effects during chemo I would wonder, "ok, what is going to happen to me this time?" Even my Oncologist would shake his head at every visit with the weird side effects that I experienced.....lost vision, un explained huge blisters that covered the bottom of my feet so I couldn't walk....not getting sick to my stomach on the part of chemo that I was supposed to and then getting sick to my stomach on the part of chemo that I'm not supposed to. He even asked me at one point don't I ever follow the rules and of course I couldn't lie to him so I had to tell him no and for proof my Mother was out in the waiting room, she could definitely confirm that one! lol

So now here I sit, wondering about my definitely has changed, I always thought I had my future pretty well planned out....where I was going to be, where Jim and I were going to visit, being around for my grandchildren.....I am feeling pretty much the same way now as I felt on September 11, 2001....everything's security about "being here" disappeared.....I don't know what the future holds now....the life that I planned might notbe and I was having a rough time accepting that until I came across a quote in another J-Landers Journal......Carlene from 
HORSESHOE BEND She knows a lot about change... she lost her soul mate Danny, her beloved husband last year so she knows about how plans change......I found peace in a quote she had posted..........

"We must be willing to get rid of the life we've planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us."
--Joseph Campbell

So that is what I am doing..... I am going to live the life that is waiting for me and let go to what I had planned. So I will have a few more Doctor visits in this new life that I have....and cancer might come back....but at least I had yesterday and I have today and I know of a few tomorrows still to come......but it's LIFE and that's a beautiful thing.

Monday, January 8, 2007

Anybody see the resemblance??? lol

Not Arnold the bald chick! lol



I've got the eyebrow pencil in thingy going if I can only pencil in some hair! lmaoooooo

Saturday, January 6, 2007

He ain't heavy...he's her Brother

I shared my personal battle with cancer in a very public way......the World Wide Web in hopes that by me sharing my story I could help someone else. I never dreamed how much love and support would be returned to me. Cancer stopped being so scary after many of you shared your own battles with this disease or that of a loved one with me. I also found a sisterhood with Trish over at My Breast Cancer Story and Stephanie over at in perpetual motion... We were all diagnosed pretty much around the same time with different types of Breast Cancer and treatments and I know for me personally, I never felt alone......I knew their hopes, their dreams and their fears....we are walking this path together even though we are miles apart.

I recently met a woman named Gina (she found me through my blog) who is losing her Brother Joseph to Cancer.........his started out as a mole on his butt cheek that he could have never found on his own and has spread through out his body. Gina recently started a blog to help herself through this...we all know journaling is good for the soul and I hope J-Land can show her the same love and support you have all given to if you get a chance please stop by and say hello to her, telling her Brother's story will help so many, get to know your body, listen to your body and your intuition....I didn't because as Mom's we tend to put ourselves on the back burner while we go about taking care of everyone and everything else first but by the GRACE OF GOD my cancer was caught in time....I am one of the lucky ones....and I will never take myself for grant it again...I will make and keep all Doctor appointments, I will finish all my medicine even if I am feeling better and I will rest when I am tired and I will learn to say "no" a lil more often....I am in charge of my health....and I was saved for a reason...perhaps it's because I am an open book for all to read and I want to pass along everything I have learned through this journey.

Here is Gina's blog ~~~~>  i love you joseph

Thursday, January 4, 2007

Happy Dancing!!!!!!!!

Well I made it, I had my final chemotherapy on Tuesday and I had my final shot of Neulasta yesterday!!! I've been HAPPY DANCING ever since....well, until this morning that is, now the pain is starting to hit me, but who cares......I won't have to experience this kind of pain again....crossing fingers, hoping forever!

I brought into the chemo room a very large chocolate/chocolate cake to celebrate my last round......and as sick as some of the other patients were......chocolate makes everything better!! LOL LOL LOL
An older man (mid 50's) who's cancer had just returned after 16 years, who has to at least start off with 2 rounds of chemo and that day being his first had been refusing his wife's attempts to eat, I bounced around from patient to patient chemo pole and all and offered cake....this gentleman put a smile on his face and said chocolate cake sounded pretty good, so I cut him a huge piece and a few minutes later his wife came to my side and called me her angel, that her Husband finally out of the blue told her it was time to tell their 16 year old Son, what his Father is on the brink of, he didn't want to tell him, but something I said about this (my cancer) only being a bump in my road, took a burden off of him and the wife left to pick up their son from school and bring him there to do the family counseling meeting that was taking place in an hour or so......another older woman said, that she has never sat and chatted with anyone during her treatments, but you all know what a chatter box I am and when I was getting ready to leave she thanked me and told me that talking to me made her feel better and we exchanged hugs.....I told her we are all here to help each other cope, share our stories because you never know how it might help someone in need of hearing it.

I did so well with the chemo that I don't have to see Dr. Serious until MAY!!!! And if I want to I could have my final surgery in just 2 weeks....My Mother and Jim boycotted that idea and want me to wait at least a month, wait until I no longer feels the effects of chemo and I know they are right, but the faster I get this last phase over with, the faster I can get on with my life once again.

I start my Tomaxifen Link ~~~> 
Medication - Tomaxifen  in two weeks and I was told by my Oncologist (Dr. Serious) that if there are any rogue cancer cells that have made it past my surgery and my 16 weeks of chemo the Tomaxafin will seek them out and make them dormant, and cancer cells would rather commit suicide then be inactive so goes their life expectancy! lol Once my ovaries have shut down completely and believe it or not there is now a shot that can do that for you too, I will be taken off the Tomaxafin and put on a less dangerous drug for the rest of my life. I have to get past that golden 5 year mark in order to be considered cured instead of in remission. So for the next 2 years I will see Dr. Serious every 4 months, then after that the 3-5 year mark, every six months, and every year after that only once a year. It is up to me to be diligent about what my body is trying to tell me, I need to follow up with my regular woman's check up, pap smear and so on plus my yearly mammogram on only my right breast, because my left breast will always be checked through an MRI/cat scan and ultra sound more squishing that baby under glass! lol lol lol

So if I disappear for a few days it's just the bone pain keeping me held hostage in my room, if I disappear for longer it might be because during a crisis I keep myself together and then fall apart after wards...I'm not sure if and when that will happen but if it does....I'll get through that too....I am a warrior!

Thank you for your love and support and especially Jeanne over at "A journey to a new me" (private blog) who never let a week of my life since first discovering I had breast cancer pass without a lil something sent to pick me up and put a smile on my face....every comment left in my blog from all of you since this journey of mine began has lifted me, pushed me and carried me on those days when I needed it the most. I felt you reach across the Internet and I hope you know every prayer, thought and best wishes helped in my journey.

God has blessed me with friends I may never get to meet, but I will always carry around in my heart!