Friday, April 29, 2011

Pet Scan

Well, I wish I had results to update on, but that would not be realistic. My Tech today told me that she would do me the favor and put a STAT on my results so I can have them by Monday morning for my appointment with Dr. Obenchain then saying that they will probably be there this afternoon but the Dr. was out of the office anyway so Monday it will be.

I had to drive into town for my 7:30 appointment which we had to leave at 6:15 for, so that is a 5:30 wake up call. YUCK.

We got to the appointment and I had to have radio-active dye injected in my veins and to not move, read, listen to the radio, text (pretty much NOTHING) for an hour. Thanks to the early wake up call, I slept.

An hour later the tech came to get me and I had to sit in the scan for 25 minutes which is much better than 45 minutes. They did a pet scan and an CT scan at the same time. Yay!

Im now patiently waiting for my results. I just want to know that the inside of my body is clear from cancer and that the chemo has done its job and is continuing to do its job from keeping any cancer from returning.

I felt pretty calm today. A bit anxious, but I got through it. Monday will be a different story. Im imagining waiting in my doctors office, having shortness of breath and watching every move that my doctor makes trying to read her every expression. Until she sits down and says "your pet scan came back clear" I wont be able to breathe normally.

Im keeping myself occupied this weekend just so I can keep my mind off of something that I can not change. Tonight I am going on a dinner date with one of my very best friends Amy and then tomorrow I might do something fun with the kids while Cory is at work. :)

Until then....

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

1st Grief Counseling Session

Well today was my first "Understanding your Grief" session. This is a bit different than going to a counselor and talking my way through this. I am mourning a loss of so many things in my life. I was asked the question "what is different today then the day before you were diagnosed". I stumbled on my words for so long, trying to find the answer and then I realized. Everything is different. Nothing is the same. It may look that way from the outside in, but its truly not. And if you think it is, I will be the first to tell you that you are wrong. I have a new life. A new life that will take a while to get used to. Cancer changes everything and it doesn't stop when you are done with treatment. Im not saying that I will mourn for the rest of my life and that life doesn't move on, it does. But its a new one. I am mourning the loss of Gabbee before cancer. Its a bigger loss than I thought it would be.

I was asked to tell my story. Who I am. From being a wife, mom, Pastor and now a Breast cancer patient. I walked through my story of cancer. From the months before I found my lump, till my feelings today. I cried the whole way through, sobbing, trying to take deep breaths but couldn't. I walked through every memory that impacted me in some way. It was hard. Very hard to relive it all but it was needed.

Friday I have my petscan. The next week I have 4 doctors appointments. Petscan results, pre-op appointment for my surgery at the end of May, Pre-op appointment with my breast surgeon and my weekly Chemo. Here we go again. I'll be honest, going into these appointments are opening a wound that has not been closed yet.

I am going to be 100% honest with you as I need to in part of my healing process. I am healed but not cured. I still need your prayers and support as much as I neeeded them on July 30th 2010. I knew eventually the support would fade off. Its natural and I understand that, but Im not done. You are what helped this journey be so much easier than if I was alone. Please don't stop now.

I go in for my petscan on Friday at 7:30. Im praying of course for clear results. Im praying that everything on the scan is clear and the doctors are confident in what they see. Im praying that this weekend is full of activity which leaves me no room for anxiety until I get the results.

I appreciate your support and prayers.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Prayer Request!

Hey everyone,

I just need some prayer. I have my petscan on Friday which im very anxious about. I also went to the cardio doctor today. They believe my heart pain is due to anxiety. Surprise surprise. I seriously need some major rejuvenation of the soul. I hate feeling the way I do.

Thanks for the support

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Some New Changes......

Well, its been a a week or so since my last post. Lots of emotions going on this past week. Its been rough, Im not going to lie. Im not sure where to even start, or how much I want to share. I guess I can give you the basics and you can read between the lines.

Today I worked out. It felt good to be back in the gym. After I walked on the treadmill for 40 minutes then doing some arm workouts, I came home and snuggled in my bed. 40 minutes was longer than I should have done. But I did it, that is what matters. As I was laying in bed, watching TLC's "A Baby Story" Usually this show just makes me want to have another baby for about 10 minutes LOL then reality sets in. However today the show was NOT what I should have watched. A mom, with a 5 year old, discovered a lump in her breast. Masectomy, Chemo, Radiation. Stage 4 cancer. Beyond her imagination, she got pregnant. She was still going through treamtent and taking TONS of medicine during the pregnancy. At 34 weeks they induced her once they knew the baby's lungs were ready and she got to bring home a baby girl. She went in for tests for herself after she gave birth and the cancer spread to her bones and liver. They showed her and her husband talking about the fight they were going to fight, and that she has 2 girls to live for and that she doesn't want to cry everyday. They ended the show "In Loving Memory".

I sat up in bed and said "Seriously"??? I got up, I paced around for alittle bit and then weeped in the bathroom. Not only was I weeping for the fear that took over my body, but for this women that I have NEVER met. Going through what she did, getting pregnant, bearing a child, to have Cancer win the battle. UGH! Never what I want to see or hear.

The thing is...Im struggling with this all. Im afraid, as I have mentioned so many times before. Will this be the end of cancer for me? Will this be the "death" of me, maybe not now, but 25+ years from now? Will I see myself sitting in the Chemo chairs once again, talking about my first run in with breast cancer and Im back again? I think about it everyday. I have been trying to figure out how to get back to my "normal" life again. But I was reminded yesterday of something that I will need time to process and learn how to do.

This week and last has been emotional for me, because of my self image. When this all happened I was on adrenaline. I heard so many times how I "rocked the baldness" and I believed it. I heard how beautiful I was in scarves, bandannas, hats, or whatever else fit on my head. I believed it all so much that I never once doubted my image. After my masectomy I had boobs again so I never really cared so much that they just removed a part of me that is way more emotional than you would think. For months, I have never felt "uncomfortable" about it. Cory has always made me feel beautiful no matter what. Then I started to lose my eyebrows. I would ask if anyone was noticing but they just told me no. THen I had some people ask me if I "shaved" them because of how they were looking. Of coure the answer is "no". Then my scalp became irritable again and my hair started falling out again, my eyelashes getting thinner and my eyebrows with stragglers hanging around. I gained 15 pounds since Chemo and with the weight gain, and the gain "on top" if you will, my clothes aren't fitting the same way. So...give me clothes that dont fit, hair loss, loss of eyebrows, feeling insecure with my recent surgery, the fear of my upcoming petscan what do you get? An insecure women.

Tears flowed from my eyes way more than I wanted them too this past weekend. On Saturday night I turned to Cory and realized something. I have never mourned the loss of all this. I have always assumed that when I am done with all of this, I will just go back to normal. No, I wont. Unfortunatley, because I was happy, but now I have to learn to accept my new normal. I will be going through some grief counseling and additional counseling for Cory and I as these recent insecurities have definitily taken a toll however the one thing that I learned so far, is that my new normal is something that I might like. I don't know...who knows? I guess I will just have to wait and find out.

We just ask for prayer. When I look in the mirror I don't see what others see. Its not possible. And you can't see what I see.

I just ask for prayer that when I look in the mirror I see what God sees.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Debbie Downer or Negative Nelly. Your choice

So I guess I can say that Im having "one of those days." There are so many emotions attached to this "cancer thing" that honestly I think at my PCP doctor tomorrow I will be seeking out counseling. I just need to basically figure out to to live normal again. Its not that easy just to go from one extreme to the other. I hope there is noone out there that thinks it works that way. I have been pretty strong emotionally and physically..doing things that I have heard others not achomplish, but that isn't what Im talking about.

I am really struggling on how to fit my life that I had before chemo into my new life. I have a ton of "new" things that are a part of me now, still a long road ahead of me and just becuase you finish chemo doesn't mean you finish cancer. I wish it was that way.

My poor husband has been my counselor, and Im sure he is getting tired of just "listening" and not responding because he isn't sure how I will take it. Yesterday I had a TOUGH DAY! I was wrapped up in self pity. My self image for the first time got to me.

Here it goes. I gained 15 pounds on chemo (don't tell me you can't see it, cause I do) My hair is falling out again (no idea why it grew then fell) my eyebrows are falling out on a daily basis (might as well have none) I have no eyelashes to hold masacra (or else it runs into my eyes) and my chest is SO MUCH bigger than before so my clothes fit terribly.

Now for a girl. These are all issues that are a "big deal". I had such an issue with my self image yesterday which made me super cranky. Cory finally snapped back at me and said "Im tired of hearing you have a self pity party"

Well....Whatever! LOL But here is the deal guys. That crap bothers me. I want hair, I want my eyebrows, I want my eyelashes. I want clothes that don't make me look like Im a DD, I want clothes that fit, rather than throwing jeans on the floor because I can't button them. And yes Im serious.

As much happiness as I have that I am done with Taxol (which by the way was terrible this week. Thank you Cory for being my rock through it) I still have so much more and I think I hyped myself up so much last week and now Im coming down. Yes, I have chemo 45 more times, Yes I have a petscan in 4 weeks that Im deathly afraid of, Yes I have a Cardio Doc appt in 2 weeks, Yes I have an appt with my Breast Surgeon in 2 weeks, My pre-op appt with Admire in 3 weeks, and all the follow up appointments that go with all that.

That stuff I am used to. I guess. However what I am not used to is going back to my daily routine that once was part of my life before cancer, that I put aside. I have still had my hand in a lot of things, but now I see it all coming back x10. Im soooo not ready for drama, Im sooo not ready for my plate to be overloaded with working two jobs/school/ministry, Im sooo not ready to take on the finances again, Im so not ready to fill my calendar up with "to do" lists rather than doctors appointments. I know that sounds weird, but its just what I have been used to for the last 10 months.

Ahhhhh there it is. me what you want. Negative Nelly or Debbie Downer but those are my thoughts and this is my journal.

Monday, April 4, 2011

The hard part of CHEMO IS OVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Praise God!!! Im DONE!!!! 9 hours later and Im done. Chemo was kinda awesome today as we celebrated and my nurses did a happy dance for me.



Thank you to my friends and family! Thank you for being there for me from the moment I got the call! Thank you for everything that you all did, and you know exactly what Im talking about. I could not have done it w/out the support of you all. I love you so much. Today was such a blessing for me.

There are so many people that played a part in my journey and I wish we could have had one big party. From my High School friends to my local neighbors and everyone in between!!! Thank you!

I can't believe Im done with the hard part of chemo.

So what is the plan of action now? Mugascan for my heart, Petscan to rule out that there is NO MORE CANCER LEFT, final reconstruction surgery, and 44 more Herceptin treatments left! Im on the road to normalcy again and I thank you all and I thank my Lord for giving me the courage that I needed to do this!

Please join me in prayer this week that my last taxol will be gentle on me and I will feel no pain this week!

I love you and I pray the Lord blesses you in abundance the way you have blessed me!

Friday, April 1, 2011

It's Friday! Do you know what that means???

OMG! 3 days till my last Taxol treatment!!! It's a start of a fun weekend! Today I went to get my bloodwork done to make sure my count is up for treatment! I told my nurse not to call me if it's bad! Im coming anyway LOL!

You guys I can't believe it! I can't believe it's finally here! I know I have a long road ahead of me & it's really not over over but for me it's such a success! In October when I started chemo I cried asking Cory to please call my doctor and tell her I can't do this! It was too much. Nausea, hair loss, fatigue, leg pain, emotional & physical toll on body but guess what???? I FREAKING DID IT!!! I did it with 2 kids, A husband, working, ministry & school plus LIFE in itself! I just shake my head at disbelief that I conquered the one thing that I was most afraid of!

When I was first diagnosed I said "as long as I don't have to have chemo I can do this, just please don't let me have to do chemo". I thought for sure I was not capable of this! When I heard the news that I begged not to hear "chemo is needed" I couldn't breathe. I cried & cried. My family, friends & family just held me saying "it's going to be ok" and I just thought they were crazy!

But they were right! Praise God! I got through it and I only give Glory to one Person and that is my savior Jesus Christ! Without Him I would not have gotten through this as well as I have!

Be prepared for Monday! It's going to be a party!!!!!!!!