Monday, February 29, 2016

Tuesday's Trip

Tuesday's trip to Madison for a 2nd opinion never happened. Less than an hour away from home I got sick. Thank goodness Kev understood that I needed him to pullover so I could be sick, even though there was nothing in my stomach. Mornings are bad, really bad.
We turned around and Kev stopped at the clinic to get me something for my nausea. I got a prescription and something intravenously.
Had some soup for lunch, will have some for dinner soon, along with an anti nausea pill. Have a headache...........can't wait to sleep....if it comes.

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Short and Sweet

I'm tired and there's not much to say. 
Saturday afternoon my daughter and 2 of the 3 children came to see me. While the adults visited Claire braided Ava's hair. They are the best of Ava found out that mom was going to have a girl, she screamed and howled that she did NOT want a sister.

Earlier this month Twelve year old Ava performed in a community talent show. She choose the music and choreographed a ballet performance, with a cameo appearance including her little sister. I think that appearance was the highlight of the performance. It was such a special touch. I had to try really hard not to cry when I watched that part.

My mom and me, I'm about 8? 7?

We had a good visit with my daughter and son in law. Mark is a wonderful husband, father, and son in law. He calls to check on me. Before they had children he'd come up on his day off to visit my mom.........because he liked her. Both of my children have chosen very well (regarding their spouses).
Yesterday I received flowers, artwork, hugs, ginger candy, pickles, Mexican food. It was a good day, but tiring.
My son also called to see how I was doing, we have a strained relationship, so that was heartwarming.
I have TONS of scarves.........and I'm not working....I don't go out a had Kev bring them all downstairs and I let the girls pick out what they wanted. It was so much fun to watch the little one choose scarves. They got a didn't choose any, she can borrow from the girls anytime.
Today, Sunday, I just stayed my jammies. Mornings are especially hard for me.....I don't want to wake up and get out of bed and face reality. I know I need to eat, but my stomach doesn't want anything in it. I force myself to swallow something....I need to take my meds....the last couple of days I'm not sure if I did. Now hubby reminds me. He is being so good...............this is his 2nd time around with metastatic cancer. His main concern is my comfort. He is becoming very protective of me.
Tomorrow we embark on a 3 hour drive for a 2nd opinion. I have what I have but the 2 doctors will figure out the best treatment plan for me. I want to get fighting!!!! I feel so terrible now. 

Ava, don't you think we look alike?
You are a beautiful young woman!

A Big Thank You

I've made many blogging friends, and one wonderful such friend posted prayer requests for me. Thanks Deb! 
I do believe in the power of prayer and it is needed and appreciated. 
Check out her blog: Garage Sale Gal

Thank you for all of your heartfelt comments, I do appreciate each and every one of them. 
Thanks for all of your prayers.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

I Hate Cancer!

I hate it here, I hate it there, I hate it EVERYWHERE!
Up, until 2 years ago, I hadn't had any experience with it. Then I got breast big deal....I'll beat it...and I did. Yes, I had many complications, but I pulled through. 
My sister has several friends with serious cancer issues (that was stupid - when is it not serious???).
When it has metastasized and comes around again it is not the same as the first time.
Where does it come from? I've read lots of articles on what causes cancer........yes, some of the stuff I am guilty of and some not. I don't see a family history of cancer, altho we do not live long, illustrious lives.
I'm almost to the point right not that I feel like saying: "I have cancer, why give a crap about my low sodium diet? who cares if sugar feeds cancer cells....I want some pickles, some sweets." I have been eating ice cream and sherbet....NO chocolate, and it is readily available. Hard to believe, huh?
My life of late: 
Dr appt
blood work
try to eat

I am still so very tired. I am still not in fight mode. 

Monday night I was hospitalized so I could get 4 units of plasma so I'd be ready for  Thoracentesis the following day. (removal of fluid around the lungs) It wasn't as bad as I expected. One night was enough though. Before I was released my oncologist came in and Kev was able to ask him some pointed questions and he was pleased with the way he answered.....of course we would have preferred different answers...but. Tomorrow I am having a chest x-ray to determine if we need to remove fluid again before the weekend. It made a big difference in my breathing.
My bff is being very good and driving me to dr appointments, but it is extremely hard on her. She has enough of her own health problems. 
Monday Kevin and I are going for a 2nd opinion at the Carbone Cancer center UW Madison.
I am NOT looking forward to chemo again, and I have to be careful b/c of what it did to my heart the first time. I don't know if I will feel much worse on the chemo....I feel like crap now anyway.
The good news is the nurse called to tell me my pap was good. hahaha
Do you think I was even thinking of that?
The better news is that my daughter is coming with her children on Saturday to visit...she's bringing me pickles and ginger candy :-)
I'm tired so am going to call it quits for the day.
Thank you so much for your thoughts and prayers. I need them!

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Mere words cannot explain

It is 2:43 AM on Tuesday morning as I sit in this hospital bed and try to cry , the tears won't come . I tried to sleep , sleep won't come . I tried to pray , I don't know what to say . Yesterday I found out the cancer is in my bones , liver , lungs , breast.
 Later today I'm having a bone scan and they also removing fluid from around my lungs . My blood was too thin for the second procedure so doctor recommended stay overnight in the hospital and get some  plasma.
 Right now I'm on the second bag of plasma and I hope that is all I need . Ive had blood drawn twice and will also have INR checked determine if I need more plasma .
 I'm not the only one has embarked on an unwanted journey , but this is mine and I have to keep track of it.
 I'll write more when I can, thanks for staying with me.

Monday, February 22, 2016

The Weekend

As I wrote in my last post hearing the cancer diagnosis twice in less then 2 years is hard, very hard to take. I think I cried all the way home, just the tears rolling down my face. Honestly, I don't think I have ever cried so much or felt so sad (even after my mom passed - I knew she'd be ok and I've always taken care of myself).

Thanks to Xanax I slept relatively good that night. I've been so thirsty and since I have a cold I've turned into a mouth breather. So......I'd wake up get a drink and go to the bathroom and sleep for a couple more hours. I try to go to bed as early as possible and stay in bed as late as I can.....less time to worry. 
Saturday morning I received a phone call from Jalen, his mom found out about my cancer and told him, of course he was crying. Thankfully his mom brought him over so I could talk to him, I wanted to tell him in person. He talked about heaven and how hard this could be on grandpa. I'm thankful he understands heaven. He told me there 's a book at school about cancer he wants to check out. He also told me to take his teddy bear (pictured above) and hug it when I miss him or when I am sad. He is such a loving soul. He made breakfast and later we played a couple of games. His younger brother was over too, Kevin played with him, he doesn't understand the way the older boys do.
 After they left I laid on the couch and cried some more. Kevin and I agreed to get a 2nd opinion in Madison (I hope). I'm glad I have friends to drive me/go to appointments with me. Kevin can not afford to take a lot of time off work.
I just laid around the remainder of the day and let the miserable roll down my face. I didn't want to read, play computer games, write, watch tv, or talk to anyone....altho I did talk and text a few people.
Between feeling nauseous one minute and hungry the next it's hard for me to eat. .....but after dinner I can take a Xanax and go to I did!
I do eat (not a lot), I know I have to eat (learned that from chemo). I weigh myself everyday....per doctors orders....and I am loosing weight every day, over 10# so far. I wouldn't normally complain......
I am so thirsty.....for COLD things: ice tea (nothing new), beer (I actually cracked one open last night and had 2 nice cold drinks), tangy lemonade, a salty Bloody Mary would be delicious........
Sunday several people brought over food for us. We were invited out to the new Mexican place in town...but....I would have had to get dressed and leave the house and my stomach would have had to allow me to put food in it. I asked for a rain check.
Sunday I laid around again, I did rally a bit later in the afternoon. Kev grilled pork tenderloin on the grill. It was very good....the little bit that I ate.
Today: Monday
I have an appointment in an hour with my oncologist to see what I am fighting. I will keep you posted. My bff is going with me, I need a 2nd set of eyes and ears....Kev can not afford to take off work. 
My pastor was over today. I told him I am empty and can't pray, all I could manage was 'Help me'.
I'll write more when I can.
Thank you so much for your prayers and for caring.

Sunday, February 21, 2016

TWO Times In Less Than 2 Years Is Just Too Much To Handle!!!

to: Cole (my firstborn grandchild, whom I am extremely proud of, & happy to see what you are doing with your life) and Ava (my 4.0 dancing diva, & entrepreneur whom I know will go far in this world) you might want to talk to your mother before reading this post. Some of my grands do read my blog so I try to keep it family friendly, but real at the same time. Today's post will be real and raw.
Time goes fast, doesn't it? You're a teenager and life is so confusing, you fall in love, your heart gets broken, if you're lucky you end up with a career you love, a family and then it starts all over again. Life changes minute you're on top of the world and the next you're trying to crawl out of the sewer.
Jan 25th my cardiologist said my heart was good! Earlier that month my mammogram declared me cancer free!!! I was on top of the world, I had several trips planned, a bedroom all prepped and ready for paint, big plans for the summer. I enjoy being a homemaker and retired. Hubby works 40 hours a week away from home so I feel it's my job to keep up the house and do the cooking, I'm a family person.
Jan 26 it felt like someone smashed the door in my face, I had absolutely NO energy so I cancelled my plans for the evening and waited for 'it' to pass. It became hard for me to breath, I lost my appetite, was nauseous, I just felt worse and worse every day. I gradually decreased my more thrift store, I barely got the grocery shopping done, cooking and cleaning were taken care of at the bare minimum. 
What's wrong with me?
The flu? Just a lesser degree b/c I had my flu shot? A virus similar to what another friend had? My heart?
One day I had a physical scheduled with an NP, the physical never happened, the NP ordered blood work and talked my cardiologist. Some meds were changed and an appointment was made with a 
rheumatologist because some indicators were high. 
A few days later I had to have my blood checked because I was on blood thinners. My INR was was high so the coumadin was discontinued. I felt so crappy that I asked one of the nurses to take my vitals, my bp was pretty low and she thought I should see the dr, so I did. He ordered more blood work and a chest x-ray and a bone scan. 
Nope, that's not enough yet. Remember I still need to have a physical....
My physical went well....I think. But I still felt like shit! The NP called my cardiologist (again) and he recommend going to the ER for more blood work and to get hooked up to a heart monitor. I decided not to go, my oncologist ordered the same bloodwork the day before.
Everything is scarier at night, in the dark. I didn't want to go through another night of worrying. Friday morning I called Kev at work and asked if he'd come home at noon to take me to ER. Since I was going to Green Bay I needed a driver and besides I was scared and needed him. We don't have a decent cardiologist here and Bay Care was recommended so off we went. I did cry a little on the way there...............what is wrong with me?
They took me in, hooked my up, gave me something for anxiety, ran a CT scan. The following day when I talked to Jalen I made him smile when I explained how the CT scan makes you feel like you peed your pants. 
A short while later the ER doctor comes in and totally turns my world upside down. She says my heart is fine, but the cancer has metastasized. OMG!!! Never, in a million years was that one of my thoughts. I was cancer free, I kicked it's why? I listened to my cardiologist and my heart was doing great. I watched what I ate, I was into an exercise program, I felt like I had never been sick. I was not worried about cancer coming back.
When she told us Kev immediately gave me a hug and I know he had tears too. I cried on the way home...and am still crying. 
I apologized to Kev yesterday, saying I am not a crybaby....he knows it and said I have plenty to cry about. We did talk a little. He is back into taking care of me mode.....I am happy he does it, but I should be doing my share . 
I don't really know exactly what is going on. Fluid around my lungs and a spot on my right breast is what I think they said.
to be continued.................
Kev is making a pork tenderloin for dinner b/c I am too lazy.

Monday, February 15, 2016

Another Post I Hadn't Planned On Writing

Need I elaborate any more?
Probably not.
I am having flashbacks from the chemo days:
I don't have a desire to eat.
I am so tired, I was up at 8:30 this morning and napped from 10 -noon. I am so tired...........but sleep fitfully at night.
The only thing I accomplished today was washing the dishes. I am going to bake some potatoes, and heat up veggies and leftover chicken for dinner. 
I should have gone grocery shopping...but that would've meant getting dressed and leaving the house. I haven't left this house for 3 days.
The smell of the soap hubby uses for his shower makes me wanna puke.

Sorry for all of the negativity but it is getting rather depressing....taking all these pills with their side effects. Just one month ago I felt like superwoman.....
I've been checking out the side effects of my thyroid med - Levothyroxin. 
Should I even be taking this? It looks like it will just add to my problems.
In the morning if I roll over in bed before getting up I am dizzy.
I am looking into Thyromin by Young Living.
Does anyone else suffer from hypothyroidism? What works for you?
Yes, I am getting as sick of writing these "I feel so awful" posts as you are of reading them. Soon, very soon, that will change.
Hope your week is off to a great start!

Friday, February 12, 2016

Eggs and More

Read this on facebook and wanted to share

We went to breakfast at a restaurant where the ‘Senior Special' was two eggs, bacon, hash browns and toast for $2.99.
"Sounds good," my wife said, "but I don't want the eggs."
"Then I'll have to charge you $3.49 because you're ordering a la carte," the waitress warned her.
"You mean I'd have to pay more for not taking the eggs?" my wife asked incredulously.
"Yes," said the waitress.
"I'll take the special, then," my wife said.
"How do you want your eggs?" the waitress asked.
"Raw and in the shell," my wife replied.
She took the two eggs home and baked a cake. ( don't mess with seniors)

Since I'm kinda grouchy I thought I'd start off with a funny. 
....and if I'm ever in that situation I hope I remember to ask for my eggs in that form.
First: I'm still not feeling any better....this is the 3rd week. I am so tired and take a nap late in the afternoon...and I do sleep. I also get so out of breath and can not walk and talk at the same time. When I do go to bed I sleep fitfully.
But my appetite is back, that I WAS NOT worried about. I am not sleeping so late in the morning, that's a good sign.
I went in for my physical earlier in the week, which did not happen. My BP was really low, so after she talked to my cardiology nurse I was told to go back to my previous dose of that med. We talked in depth about how terrible I felt. The NP ordered a 4th set of blood tests for me.
Finally.....some news. I'm glad all of my other tests were good...but what is wrong with me? Why do I feel so awful?
My thyroid is under active, most likely from my radiation last year. I'll start the new meds tomorrow.
Also my inflammation indicators are quite high. I am not sure what that means exactly, but arthritis,and such does run in my family so that doesn't surprise me.
Since I am a blood thinner I have my blood checked about every 4 weeks. My INR is supposed to be between 2-3, so when the nurse called and said it was 6.3 I shouted out "holy shit".
Next week I am going to have my physical. The week after I have two more dr appointments - a rheumatologist and an electrophysiologist. I sure hope one of these doctors can figure out why I am so out of breath.
Second: I'm grouchy because I let one person get to me, even though 50 other people like me, I listen to the one that hates me and let that bother me.
On the bright side Yesterday I had lunch at school with 2 of my grandsons. We always enjoy that.
I have been doing the aquatic exercises at the Y with the Silver Sneakers b/c I can move at my own pace. Today we had a Valentine's party - soup & sandwich and some games (prizes, of course). It was really nice.
Looks like it will be a cold and quite weekend here. Kev and I don't celebrate Valentine's Day...actually he doesn't really celebrate any holiday. He does bring me bar food on Wednesday I can live with that. 
Happy Valentine's Day to you!!

Sunday, February 7, 2016

It's A New Week

I'm still not feeling the greatest, but am a teensy, tiny bit better tonight. Saturday was a total loss. We'll see what tomorrow brings.
I did set my alarm so I'd get up for church today, I have to do that if I want to be out of bed before 9. Eight o'clock is good, but 9 is a little late, hope that changes when summer comes.
I've had a hankering for ice cream for several days but we don't have any. Last night hubby asked if I wanted a shake from McDonald's.....that wasn't really what I wanted....but I said sure. I could understand not wanting to change clothes, get out of the car, and walk around in the store....why else are drive - thru's so popular? He was trying...I asked if we had ice cream a couple of times. This morning he went to the store and picked up sweet rolls (I can easily avoid those) and some rainbow (or superman?) ice cream.....YUK. I had to tell him I didn't like that kind. I was going to pick up something I liked after church but I was so beat that I forgot and came right home.
Hubby came along with me to our grandsons's band concert Thursday night. I don't think he has gone to any other school events.

 Yes, he grumbled when I crawled over him to go up front and take photos. The band directer has each row stand up so we can get a photo. Hubby also complained when I followed the boys back to their rooms and got this picture of grandson J. 
Oh how I love facebook. I found this photo of my oldest granddaughter and claimed it as my own. She's 15.
My back and hip bones have been hurting so much when I go to bed, I just can not get comfortable. I toss and turn and roll around for hours.  My chest hurts...heartburn? (that would be a new experience for me). Two nights ago I grabbed my Young Living Deep Relief roll on and tried that. Either I was so tired that I thought it worked or it did make me feel better. I tried it again last night and it did help. I wasn't sure where to put it, so I did as suggested: feet, temples, and I also put some on my achy back and hips. I'm a doubting Thomas, skeptical kind of girl so I am still wondering if it's all in my head.....but if I hurt tonight I'm using it again.
I have an appointment with my GP on Tuesday so if I'm still feeling crappy I'll talk to her. I do know that all of my blood-work from last week was good, really good. I hope I can start breathing again....this shortness of breath is getting old.
I hope this week is off to a good start for you and me!

Thursday, February 4, 2016

It's Been A Quiet Week

....and I'm not complaining. 
Weird coincidence? Last week's dr appointment went very well, the dr did increase my blood pressure meds. The very next day I had absolutely NO ambition. I thought that was what was causing my I went back to my previous dose. I finally was able to talk to the nurse and explained my situation to him and I decided to take the new dose of BP meds. Maybe high BP was causing me to feel icky. We shall see. I am also feeling shortness of breath since last week. Not the extreme shortness of breath I had previously, but definitely feeling worse that I had been for a long time.The past 2 weeks I have just not felt like myself (who am I feeling like? I'm not sure.) I'm feeling lazy, not happy (as I usually am), I almost feel nauseous, I don't have much of an appetite (that's a good thing)....I just don't feel right.
 Monday I attended a silver sneaker exercise class at the Y and I could not keep up. It was more strenuous than the ones at the senior center I had  been attending,  I was just beat and had to just stand there and march very slowly. I'm not wasting my time going to that class until I feel better. I am still taking the water aerobics classes, those are not so strenuous and I can easily slow it down.
Today I had lab work done for my appointment next week with my primary care dr. I am not sure what she is looking for. The cardiologist ordered more blood tests after I talked to the nurse and expressed my concerns. Four vials lighter I walked out of the clinic with a juice and granola bar.      
I'm not sure if I have some kind of bug or if it is my heart. I've also been experiencing some dizziness so am seeing the electrophysiologist later this month. They deal with the diagnosis and treatment of heart rhythm disorders.
And that is why I haven't done much of anything the past 2 weeks.
All decorated for Valentine's day....and that will be it!