Monday, December 21, 2009

Happy Holidays!

Just wanted to take the time to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas! We (the kids and I) will be spending a relaxing Christmas Eve with my mom and my brothers. Then we will most likely spend Christmas Day day home. I am so excited for the kids to open their gifts. We have been truly blessed this year with lots of friends and family that love us very much and have made sure that my kids have the kind of Christmas they deserve and more. This is going to be a fantastic Christmas for them. :o)

Tomorrow is my biological treatment day. I don't look forward to them as they also give me Benedryl through my port and it makes me so sleepy. I always make sure mom has plenty of reading material for when I fall asleep on her.

Thanks to everyone for the continued prayers and support. I really am feeling great and happier than ever. I am optimistic that I will beat this even if the "odds" are against me. I refuse to be another statistic.

I have met more and more young Stage IV Colon cancer patients and it really makes me want to do something to push for earlier screening. Most of my friends who have Stage IV Colon cancer are under the age of 40. My newest friend is only 26 with mets to her lungs. Something needs to be done..just not sure where to start. :0(

Not to leave this on a "downer"..Have a safe and happy holiday and I will most likely post another update after Christmas or at the start of Cycle 11 on the 28th. We are getting close to the end now :0)

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Cycle 10 completed

Today was my final day of cycle 1o. I got "unhooked" and got my shot to keep my white cell count up. I had a little bit of a scare on Monday when I got the results of my blood tests. Everything was out of whack! My white cell count was extremely high, My neutrophils were at an alert level, my red cells were up, the CEA and the CA-19-9 were also elevated from last time. I was beyond scared that something was terribly wrong. I saw my Oncologist on Tuesday and she said that because I had my shot two days prior to my blood draw that it explains all of the crazy blood test results and that I should not worry. She thinks that I am progressing well and felt my liver and said that it is much better.

So, I have my PET scan on Friday and now she also wants me to have a CAT scan as well to compare to the one that they took in the hospital in July to use as a baseline. I won't get the results until I see her on December 29th. I guess this will allow me to enjoy the holidays in case there is any bad news. Keeping my fingers crossed for good results.

I want to thank everyone again for the continued support and prayers. I am really thankful to feel as good as I do right now.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Biological treatment day

It's hard to believe that it has been 5 months since the devastating day that I receive my diagnosis. I can still vividly remember the ER doctor coming in and telling me that my CT scan showed that my insides were a mess and that they think I have cancer. I was alone with only the Dr in the room as my husband had left to go to the vending machine with our oldest son. I was terrified and broke down. The next day after exploratory surgery they confirmed the worst. I woke up from surgery to something I had never expected. I had spent months thinking that I have everything, but cancer. The word never even occured to me.

I have come a long way from that fateful day. I have realized more about life in the past five months that I never even dared. Life is precious and it truly is a gift. We often take it for granted and the people in it. I have tried hard to make relationships with people that I may have neglected and bring people closer to me. I am so thankful for everyone in my life. I also have realized that some people come and go in your life. That is OK too. Everyone has a purpose even if they are in your life only for a brief while. Even when things end badly and you know it is time to move on. Some relationships i should have moved on from a long time ago, but I was holding out hope for change that never happened. I am at peace with that and have never felt better in my life. I really have moved on and into the next phase of my life.

I have a Stage Iv colon cancer buddy that has given me hope. She was diagnosed in 2004 and is now NED (no evidence of disease). this gives me so much hope for my future. She has been an inspiration to me and really gives me the sense that miracles can happen.

I have found so much support from so many people and I am eternally grateful for all the love and prayers. I have to keep the faith :0)

Today is my biological treatment. This is usually where I fall asleep on my mom from the drowsiness of the benadryl they give me beforehand. LOL My mom is such a trooper. Hopefully, they will also have the blood test results from the lab that I had drawn on Fri. Praying that those numbers continue to go down. I actually feel better than I have in a long time and certainly do not feel "sick"

Loves and kisses,

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Chemo Cycle 9

On Day two and home with my lovely pump filled with chemicals. I go tomorrow afternoon to be unhooked thankfully. I also go in for my once every three week test to check my CEA (a tumor marker for colon cancer patients) and the CA019-9. I should be able to report the results on Monday. I'm praying that the numbers have gone down.

I am worried because lately I have had lots of twinges and aches in the area where my liver is. I am just hoping that it is the chemo doing its job and not the chemo failing. It has me worried, but but I should know Monday whether or not things are working as they should be.

Otherwise, I am feeling great. I discovered that caffeine was the secret to keeping my appetite up. I have actually managed to gain 17 lbs back of the 50 lbs that I lost. I look so much better that people have actually commented on it. I don;t look so "sick" and anymore. If you didn't know that I have cancer, you would never guess now ;0)

The founder of singleton moms has been an enormous help to me. She is making sure that I have all my paperwork in order in case something does happen to me. Cancer may not take me, but I could be hit by a bus tomorrow. She is doing so many things for me and I am forever grateful. She knows how serious my diagnosis is and wants to make sure that I am taken care of. She is wonderful!

I am so blessed to have such supportive friends and family. People that I haven't talked to in years and new friends that I have made recently. I am so fortunate to have you all in my life. I have drawn strength from all of you.

The kids are doing well, but I am still trying to convince my oldest to go to therapy. I really do think that she needs to talk to someone. She is old enough to understand the reality of the situation. My middle child is constantly telling me that I am "sick". Which actually drives me batty. I don't feel "sick" and I want to call myself a survivor someday. :0) The baby of course has no clue and is thriving.

I'll update soon on the results of my tests and any other happenings.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

Just wanted to wish everyone a happy Thanksgiving! I'm headed off to my mom's in a little bit to have dinner with her, my kids, and two of my brothers. I am so blessed and thankful for each day that I have to spend with my family. It is weird how cancer changes your life in mysterious ways. I now make sure to let the people in my life know how much I love them and are thankful for them. Little things make me happy and in a way they always have. I now see how people come and go in your life and that is OK too. I have so much to be thankful for and my three beautiful children have brought me so much joy. I wish someone would have told me that children are like pieces of your heart walking outside of your body.

I am also thankful for all the love, prayers, and support I have gotten over the last five months since my diagnosis. I never knew I could feel so much love. You are all wonderful and make me believe that I will survive this. You are all blessings. I hope that you are all blessed this Thanksgiving with the love of family and friends.


Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Chemo Cycle 9 delayed

So, I got to my appointment a little bit late yesterday by accident. (We had the time wrong) So, they refused to treat me and set my Cycle 9 schedule to next week (Mon-Wed) instead. The funny thing is that if I get there on time, they have made me wait almost an hour in the waiting room. It's funny how things work when the tables are turned.

I am looking on the bright side that at least my Thanksgiving dinner will taste "normal" and I will be able to enjoy it. I am looking forward to spending the holiday with my kids, my mom, and two of my brothers. I know that the time will be special.

My middle child came home on Sunday from his trip with his dad and he is so happy to be home. He went back to school on Monday and is doing so well. It was so nice to see how much he missed his home, his brother and sister, and me. I've been getting lots of hugs and loveys.

The baby has a cold and is a little cranky. I'm just hoping that no one else catches it. Otherwise, he is doing good and growing like a weed. Can you believe that he is already wearing a 3T at 17 months? He's not even overly chubby just really solid. He is my little charmer.

My oldest is doing well. She is looking forward to having the next three days off of school and the weekend. Things have been really tough on her and she could use the break from school. Her teacher is still not very understanding and it breaks my heart to see my daughter struggle. I really wish she would talk to someone.

I am doing well. I have made a lot of "online" friends that know what I am going through both with my diagnosis and with my pending divorce. It is nice to know that I am not alone. I am doing much better about everything and have reached the stage where I am actually finding my happiness again. It's actually been a long time coming and I'm happy to be single and raise my three beautiful children.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Weekend Update ;0)

So, I guess its time for an update. I am so glad that it is Friday. We get to sleep in tomorrow if we want to. Kaylie has been having a hard time lately and her teacher is not very understanding of our circumstances and the emotions/uncertainty that comes with my diagnosis. She seriously needs to cut my daughter some slack and be more understanding. It is very aggravating.

Otherwise, things are going as smoothly as possible considering. We are still waiting for Tyler to come home. He has been gone two and a half weeks now and was supposed to be brought home today. The ex has promised to have him home by Sunday. That seriously needs to happen as Tyler needs to go back to school and I miss him so much. It feels so good to know that we are nearing the end and hopefully I can start the new year with Cancer not being the first thing on my mind. I get my blood drawn again on Dec 2nd, so I will know then where I stand on my CEA counts and CA-19-9 which are the current tumor markers for colon cancer. At last blood draw, my CA-19-9 was normal, but the CEA was still quite high at a little over 300.

Hopefully, the next four cycles will be it for me. This cancer is aggressive and recurrence is very likely, but I can have hope and faith that it will be years instead of months before that happens - if ever.

I attended a Webinar last week on Nutrition and Lifestyle choices to prevent recurrence. It was very informative, but I seriously need to make some major changes in my diet. No more red meat for me. I also need to concentrate more on my mental health and think healing thoughts. I have also become a part of several online communities with other cancer patients/survivors and it has been so helpful to me to talk with others who truly know what I am going through.

I seriously need to see the film/documentary of "Crazy Sexy Cancer" and get her books when I have the "extra" money. My dad rocks! He just got me the DVD and both books after reading my blog. Love you, Dad :0) She is so inspiring and has lots of great tips as to not let cancer rule/ruin your life and to live life to the fullest. I want so much to wake up and not let the "c-word" consume my world. My kids deserve better than that and they are my first priority.

Other than the fatigue, I am doing good and trying my Best to take positive steps forward in my life. :0)

Monday, November 16, 2009

Post treatment update

Thought I would give everyone a post treatment update. I am actually doing quite well. My appetite has been a lot better and I actually managed to gain a few pounds instead of losing. I know this will help me to keep my strength up and be better in the long run.

The kids are keeping me going. I wake up and smile when I see them. They really are the light of my life. I have been truly blessed with three amazing and very different kids. They each amaze me in their own ways. I felt bad this morning because my pre-teen daughter had a crying meltdown and couldn't explain why she was crying. I know the uncertainty in out lives is taking its toll on her. I really wish that she would agree to counseling.

I have so much to do around this house. We are down-sizing and moving to an apartment hopefully in December. I wish I had a little more energy to get things done. I actually accomplished a lot so far and have been doing some serious cleaning and getting rid of stuff. It is amazing how much "junk" you collect over the years. It has been difficult to survive financially over the past few months, but this month really put the squeeze on. I haven't received any money from my ex for child support. Yet, he has had the money to feed himself, his girlfriend and our son at restaurants and fast food. It really makes me angry at how selfish he is being. Anyways, I need to get cracking on packing up this house. At least I was able to go through the playroom and get rid of toys while my little man was with his dad.

This week there is so much to do. I have my Erbitux treatment today. Plus, I have to run a couple of errands. Then on Thursday, we have the dreaded PET scan. I am extremely nervous for the results, but I know that it must be done. We have put it off for far too long. I'm just not looking forward to the two hours it takes and not being able to have carbs or sugar the day before. The day of, I can only have water. I am not a water drinker, so this will be difficult for me. ;0) Enough whining from me...I WILL survive!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Cycle 8 done and Gone :0)

Just finished Cycle 8 yesterday. Only 4 more treatments to go and hopefully I can start the new year Cancer free. I am hopeful that this treatment is working and will be finally doing my PET scan in the next couple of weeks. Need to get it done before the holidays creep up on us.;0)

Working on eating better and trying to gain a little weight back. I know this will increase my odds of not getting sicker and having more strength.

I am getting stronger by the day and more emotionally stable. I realized a lot of things about myself and I feel more empowered than I ever have. :0)

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Cycle 8

We are almost 80% done with chemo treatment. :0) The shot worked and my white blood cells were up, so I was able to receive treatment yesterday. I never thought I would be so thankful to have chemo. Chemo sucks, but cancer sucks even more. It is going alright except the fatigue has set in again. I guess I should be thankful that I just have the baby here during the day and he still takes naps, so that I can too. That is a bonus, but I still miss my middle child who is visiting his father so much. I call him every day, even though he is not much of a phone talker just to check on him. My daughter is back to school this week after feeling a little under the weather last week. The baby is doing fine too. We are all adjusting to life with Cancer and making the best of it. I still have my moments of sadness, but I am a fighter and fighters win!

Sunday, November 8, 2009


I don't know why I feel so down lately. I go from feeling like a fighter to wanting to give up constantly. It's so hard to work though these emotions and feel so isolated all the time. I rarely get out of the house anymore unless it's to go to the store or chemo treatments. I think it is finally starting to take a toll on me. I'm tired of being sad and I know I need to pull myself out of this funk. I just sometimes wonder why all of cancer, my son's issues, and my husband leaving during all of this had to be my much more can I withstand?!

Sorry for the downer post, but I just had to get this off my chest.

Friday, November 6, 2009


Had my third shot today to try and boost my white blood cell count. Hopefully, I will be able to resume treatment on Monday. The shots give you some pretty funky bone pain, but I'm not complaining as long as it does it job. ;0) My CEA numbers continue to go down and my CA-19-9 is 34 which is normal. So, the treatment so far is working and I am so thankful.

My middle son is off with his father and I miss him so much. He only left yesterday,but I have only been away from him once before in his five years. This is really difficult for me right now when I want to spend every moment with my kids. My future is uncertain and I want them to know how much their mommy loves them and cherishes time with them.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

No Treatment today

I couldn't receive treatment today because my White Blood Cell count was too low. So, instead I received a shot today and for the next two days as well. Then hopefully, I will be able to receive treatment on Monday -Wed if the counts are up to normal.

Otherwise things are going alright and I have been forcing myself to eat..even though everything tastes like cardboard. I met a lady at my treatment center today that is the same age with the same exact diagnosis. It was nice to met yet another person that understands what I am going through. She too is a single mom. We exchanged numbers and I look forward to talking more with her. :0)

Thanks to everyone for the continous prayers and kind thoughts. They really are helping me through this. :0)

Monday, November 2, 2009

My Banner

My banner was made from my daughter, Kaylie.

An update

As most of you know by now, my husband of 7 years left me last week for another woman. She is his team driver and I am slowly healing. I realized that we haven't been "in love" for a long time. The kids are doing fine with their mommy and the only one that really realizes what is going on is my oldest. She is really hurting right now and angry for me. She is such a precious angel.

Otherwise, we are all doing great. I feel stronger and stronger every day. I will have new CEA and CA-19-9 numbers at the end of the week. Hopefully, those numbers continue to go down as I kick this cancer's bootie. I feel positive and I am so thankful for all the love and support of my family and friends. We start Cycle 8 of 12 on Wed and I am hoping that this round is gentler on me than the last cycle. I think the last cycle was more depression with all that has been going on in my life.

I have been urged to get counseling, but hesitate because it one more thing that my mom will have to drive me to. Although, she could probably use some counseling with me. Maybe my daughter too. My sons are both to young to even grasp was is going on.

Today I am meeting with the founder of which helps single moms that are battling cancer and going through treatment. I am really looking forward to meeting her. I see how much they have helped other moms and I am excited to have yet another team of moms on my side.

My ex is probably about to quit his job because he is currently in the hole. So, I am stressed about money because I won't be seeing any Child support for awhile. I may have to consider living with my mom for a few months. At least until my treatments are over and I have saved money for a smaller place and hopefully a used car. I hate being cooped up in this house all the time. There is a great playgroup for my youngest but I can't go to any of the events because they are too far to walk and I can't burden my mom anymore than I already have.

I'll get off my pity pot, but that is my current life situation in a nutshell. Thank you to everyone for your prayers and kind thoughts. I will be alright.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Another round of Erbitux

Just had another round and it wipes me out, but I have spent more time out of bed today than in. I really think it is more depression than fatigue from the chemo. I am dealing with it the best that I know how. Tyler has really been a handful lately and I am at the end of my rope. We had a really good night tonight though singing ABC's together and counting. It was really nice. My daughter is at her Karate which has been so good for her during this ordeal. She already tested and will be getting her Yellow belt soon. I am so proud of her. The baby is doing well too and walking up a storm. Watch out me! My kids are what keeps me going and I pray that this cancer will go away and never return every day. I am so thankful for the loving support of my family and friends. Without them I could not endure this. Love you all!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Cycle 7

Cycle 7 was far more difficult than any cycle so far. I'm sure it was due to all the added stress that I have in my life right now. I am trying my best to keep everything together for my kids if nothing else. They are the ones that need me the most right now. I am still struggling to eat and have lost even more weight. It's difficult when everything tastes like cardboard and you have no appetite. I am still trooping along and trying my best to beat this cancer. The numbers for my CEA and CA 19-9 counts went down by 50% this past week, so I am hopeful.

I treated my daughter to her Fall Festival at school with her Uncle this past Friday and they had a blast. I am so glad that she got out to have some fun with her Uncle. The boys are doing well as can be under the circumstances. Tyler still needs some extra help, but is progressing well in school. Logan is my "Chunky Monkey" and I just wish I had his little appetite. That boy will eat anything..even his veggies with happiness. I love them all to pieces. :0)

Thursday, October 15, 2009


Fatigue in a nutshell "sucks"! My biological treatment every Wed seems to wipe me out. I was thankful that hubby was here to give me a much needed 3 hour nap. I still ended up going to bed early and got another 12 hours. I feel much more refreshed today and was able to get up and do more than I have in a while. I caught up on laundry, dishes, and other household stuff. Hubby has been working on a extensive "honey-do" list including taking care of our front yard trees that seem to have gone crazy over the last couple of months that he has been gone.

In exciting baby is finally taking his first steps without holding on to anything. He smiles the whole time and is so proud of himself. :0)

All in all..I am doing the best that I can and trying my best to remain positive.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Chemo Cycle 6

We've reached the halfway pint of my treatment. Each cycle seems to get harder with the side effects. I've been steadily losing weight and am working hard to try and keep my weight at a steady level, but it gets harder as treatment continues. I know that I have to work harder at forcing myself to eat no matter what. The nurse at treatment yesterday gave me an awesome cookbook that gives lots of great tips on what to eat during each side effect. I'm definitely going to put it to good use.

Day 1 went well. The Benedryl always wipes me out, so other than checking out the book..I spent most of the four hours sleeping. It still seemed like we were there forever! Afterwards, I had to stop and get cat food so that the cats don't eat me alive. ;0)

Today is Day 2, so we face 2 hours in the treatment room and another 22 hours with the pump tonight. Tomorrow, we go and get unhooked and head directly to go and finally get my PET scan done. I'm kind of nervous about that. I'll keep everyone posted on the results.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Still feeling really tired, but I am trying my best to manage. I am finally getting better sleep, but having the strangest dreams. I'm still waking in the middle of the night with my mind working overtime. I really need to find something to direct my attention to more positive things. It is difficult when the kids and I are cooped up in the house all the time.

I saw my PA at the Oncologist's office last week and she did an excellent job of easing a lot of my anxiety and telling me to stop reading and start thinking of myself as an individual. It really helped me to believe that I can beat this even if statistically the odds are against me. There is always the chance that this cancer will go into remission. I have to hold on to that hope.

I went back to my biological treatments on Wed. Hoping this time around that we can keep some of the side-effects in better control. I was exhausted after the treatment from the Benedryl, but
otherwise I was feeling alright.

On Friday, I must have caught some kind of bug because I couldn't even get out of bed. I ended up getting sick three times and was feeling so weak. Pretty pathetic when you have three kids to take care of on your own. That's where the guilt kicks in and you wonder if you are doing the best that you can.

Sadly, after spending the last five years trying to lose those last pounds of "baby" weight, I am now suddenly faced with trying to keep the weight on. I can't afford to lose anymore weight, so I have relented and started to drink Ensure just to get some extra calories. I used to love food..maybe too much. Now, it seems ridiculous to me that I have to force myself to eat the things that I once would have inhaled. I dream of the day when I will enjoy food like that again.

We are now reaching the halfway point of my treatment. Next week will be my 6th Chemo treatment and it seems to get increasingly harder as we go on. I'm battling depression and hate that I am so dependent on others right now. I have cancer, but I want to feel like I am more capable of doing things for myself. Unfortunately, my finances fall short of me being able to feel like I am still alive. With my mom's own poor health, I fee guilty for all that she does for me. I know that she does it out of love for me, but I see the toll that it takes on her and it makes me feel even more guilty. I wish that I was in a better financial position to help myself more.

Anyways, I step off the pity potty and say that I am at least feeling good enough today to actually update my blog, so I guess that is good news. ;0)

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Cycle 5

Cycle 5 is going well. I had a real appetite yesterday for the first time in months. It started when I made myself a cup of noodle soup before my chemo. Then I had some cheese its at chemo and came home to eat a chicken fajita pita and some curly fries. Later, while helping my daughter with her homework, we shared some butter lovers popcorn. I haven't eaten that much in a long time! I was really proud of myself :0)
My son did not want to sleep last night. We are out of his medication, so I am dealing with him being super hyper and non-compliant. He ended finally passing out at 3am, so needless to say I am exhausted this morning. I had trouble getting to sleep after that and was awake until almost 5am. Hard when I have to be up at 6:30 to get my daughter ready for school. It's really difficult to deal with all of this alone and I really wish hubby were home.

Besides being overly tired and needing some coffee, Day 2 is going alright. I go in for treatment this afternoon for 2 hours and then come home with the pump again for another 22 hours. The only real side effect that I am feeling right now is the cold sensitivity.

In other good news, my CEA and CA 19-9 numbers continue to go down. Since my last blood test my CEA was more cut by more than half. They are still fairly high (I have a lot of Cancer), but they are going in the right direction and the treatment is working. I believe that all the positive thoughts and prayers for me have had a huge impact in how I am doing. I truly believe that is what is helping me to deal with everything and remain positive. Much love to all of you :0)

Monday, September 21, 2009

Rough Day

Had a rough day yesterday. Not feeling well both physically and had a huge surge of emotions that overwhelmed me. I spent a good part of the morning crying. My mom came over to take care of the kids, so that I could get some much needed sleep. I need to learn that my body doesn't work the way that it used to and I can't stay up late and get up early anymore.

I have so many thoughts going through my head and I have that the first thing that I think of in the morning is that, "I have cancer." The harsh reality and then a million thoughts come rushing in. Cancer has changed my whole perspective on everything. The "little things" that used to irritate me don't seem as important anymore. I spend each and every day telling and showing my children how much that I love them. There is not a moment that they are not in my thoughts. I think about living and seeing all their important moments and sadly I think about dying and leaving them without a mommy. I want so badly to live. but sometimes wanting is not enough. I pray that my body cooperates with the chemo and I can get more time to see all those "moments". None of us are promised tomorrow, but it seems so much scarier when you realize what that really means. I'm a fighter and I WILL fight for more time....

Friday, September 18, 2009


No big plans for the weekend except hanging out with my mom and the kids. We may treat ourselves and get a Starbucks too.

I am really enjoying the break from the biological treatments - already seeing a difference in my skin. Hopefully, I can keep it a little more managed with the new lower dose when we resume this treatment in the 30th. Currently, I am gearing up for Cycle 5 next week and hoping that it goes a little better for me than Cycle 4. Normally, I feel better the Tuesday after I get "unhooked", but this week it really took until today (Friday) for me to feel "normal". Hopefully, this will be the worst of it. :0)

Couldn't schedule my PET scan yet as the tech informed us that it is actually 10 hours that I need to keep my distance from my children, (At least an arms length). This means that my children need to spend the night elsewhere or it will never work. Needless to say, anyone who has children understands that it would be next to impossible to keep my kids away from me if we are in the same house. LOL

Looking forward to some "fun stuff" that is in the planning stages that I will update you all on at a later date. ;0) Really want to spend as much time doing things with my family and my children as life and time in general is just too precious to waste.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Link to My daughter's Blog ;0)

Getting a Break!

Doctor decided to take it easy on me and give me two weeks off on my weekly biological treatment in order for my acne-like rash to clear up a little. When we restart, they will be giving me a lower dose to help manage the side effects. I am really happy about is my face after all ;0)

My family and I finally have a plan on how to get my PET scan completed since I can't be around my children for 6 hours following. I am nervous about it, but I know it will give them a baseline as to where we are really at with my cancer.

Today, I am finally feeling much better after a much rougher cycle 4 last week. Finally, I have my appetite back and am looking forward to a fully loaded Subway Sandwich for a late lunch. Nothing else much planned for the day except spending time with my kiddos.

Saturday, September 12, 2009


I just finished Cycle 4 of my Chemo yesterday and I still feel pretty good. The Chemo that I am taking fortunately does not make you lose your hair, but the biological treatment that I have every Tuesday makes me break out like a teenager :0( Still don't have much of an appetite, but that usually returns after the metallic taste has left my mouth. Cold sensitivity is pretty high right now. Touching anything cold feels like I am being burned. Made it hard to make that Frozen pizza for the kids for lunch.

I think my daughter is getting a cold, so I made her some chicken noodle soup. My mom is making us her famous "pie pie" and Chocolate Chip cookies for dinner. Hoping my appetite returns by them as those are my favorites. Looking forward to spending the weekend relaxing with my mom and the kids. I feel so fortunate to have my mom nearby. She has been a tremendous support through all of this.

My hubby will be gone for a least another month. He just signed his truck lease and has finally been making the miles that we were praying for. yay! We (the kids and I) miss him, but know that he is out there trying to provide for us. It has been difficult for him to be away from us, but we are making the best of the situation. We have lots of long telephone conversations that help us through.

I am especially thankful for all my extended family and friends who follow me on facebook, my blog and daily who are praying for me. I really do believe that those prayers are working. At last check my CEA counts were half of what we started with. The Chemo is working to kick this cancer's bootie!

The Start of Chemo

I began cycle 1 of my Chemo on July 28th, 2009. I was nervous and very anxious. I had no idea what to expect to how my reaction would be to the Chemo. The first day in the treatment room was 6 hours as the initial dose takes the longest. I came home with a pump that I would have to wear for 22 hours and return to get more treatment and then another 22 hour refill. The third day, I get "unhooked". This is how the cycle will go for 6 months..well past Christmas. The medications that they give you now for nausea are awesome. For the most part, I felt pretty good. Maybe just a little more tired, not much of an appetite, and a little bit of a tummy ache.

I felt good enough that second day to go school supply and uniform shopping for my kids since they started school on August 3rd. I lost 30 lbs since my release from the hospital from my lack of appetite, so now I work really hard on maintaining,so that I don;t end up like a skeleton. ;0)

Hospital Visitors and going home

I was so fortunate to have such a supportive family. My mom came daily and brought my daughter along. I requested that my youngest not be brought because I knew it would break my heart that I couldn't hold him. My youngest brother drew me a picture (He is an awesome artist) of my baby as I remember him best..sitting in his car seat with the air conditioning blowing in his hair with the hugest smile on his face. That vision is what got me through those days without my little boy.

Tyler and Daddy spent the first few nights with me, but we don't have a car right now since mine caught on fire on Memorial Day. So, it became to difficult for him to get to the hospital and Tyler was getting restless. So, my mom would come daily and try to encourage me as best as she could. My daughter being there was the best even though I know it was hard for her to see me like that.

I recovered quickly as I always do and couldn't wait until they gave me the okay to go home. The first few weeks home were hard, as I was still recovering from surgery and needed help. I was so fortunate that my youngest brother is as awesome as he is. He came to live with me during those first few weeks and helped to take care of the kids. He was awesome and I owe him so much!

My dad drove all the way from Minnesota to come and see me right after my release from the hospital. It was so nice the first few days to have my family together. I enjoyed that visit so much. :0)

Surgery and Post-op

The morning of July 3rd, 2009, I was taken in for exploratory surgery. The surgery ended up taking about 6 hours. While they were in surgery, they discovered that I had a 16mm tumor on my colon which they removed, a perforated bowel, and a 13mm tumor on my liver. My insides were almost septic and they had to flush me out about 6 times. I was on a multitude of antibiotics from the infectious disease Doctor during my entire eight day hospital stay and ended up needing a blood transfusion.

After the surgery was completed, I was very groggy and completely lost on what everyone was telling me. I could not comprehend that at age 34, I have stage IV Colon Cancer. They warned me that the next year would be the hardest battle of my life. My doctors were my peers and they themselves were in shock.

My hospital stay was wonderful (as far as being in a hospital goes). The Doctors and Nurses were great and did a wonderful job of explaining things to me. My surgeon's PA was awesome and even printed out a ton of information for me on treatment options and what my diagnosis means. I refuse to listen to statistics..I am young and otherwise healthy..I can totally kick this cancer to the curb!

How It all Started

On July 2nd, 2009 after months of stomach pains that progressively had gotten worse, I decided that I could not take that pain anymore. My husband had come home for his "home time" as a truck driver and I asked him to take me to the local clinic. He was happy that I finally wanted to go to the Doctor as he had been urging me for since March, but I hesitated because of insurance issues.

I was seen at the local clinic, but because of all of my symptoms and not having the right equipment they urged me to immediately go to the ER at Banner Estrella Hospital. I made arrangements for my kids to be watched (except for Tyler who came with Daddy and I) and we headed off to the hospital. I was feeling my worst ever by this time and very scared of what was wrong with me.

We were seen very quickly in the ER because of the symptoms I was having and the fact that my heart rate was so elevated. Last I heard, it was 147 upon being admitted. The Doctor started his exam and mentioned that I had a defect in a hernia that I had repaired in 2005. I thought that that was all it was. They gave me some medicine for the pain and ran several blood tests before sending me in for a CT Scan.

They came back and said I had earned myself a room and I was so scared. They moved me to an ER room and I waited for the Doctor to come in with the results. Tyler was hungry, so Scott took him to the vending machines. While he was gone the Doctor came back in and said, "Your CT scan shows a real mess..we are not sure what is going have some spits on your liver that we think are cancer..we are going to have to do exploratory surgery to figure this all out". He then went on to tell me that I was really lucky that I came in to the ER. "You probably would not have made it here". Boy does that make you feel blessed!