Friday, October 21, 2011

Update on Bella

First, I just want to say thank you to everyone that has been praying for Bella.

If you are not on Facebook or just haven't been following, I wanted to give you an update on why we were even requesting prayer.

Over the past year, Bella has become withdrawn from family and friends. Her anxiety has been rising each day and she becomes very distressed in situations that she is not comfortable with.

I put it aside trying to justify why she is feeling the way she is feeling. "Well I had cancer, and of course she is anxious" however she got worse and when we started noticing that she wouldn't go over her friends houses or even family, we knew that it wasn't just going to "go away".

Recently I got a call from her teacher and the anxiety is taking over at school as well also noticing that each time she did have "butterflies in her belly" she broke out in this rash. This is when we knew we had to take action and call on the doctor.

We saw her pediatrician and she has a type of eczema that is caused by stress. We talked awhile about the changes in the house and her actions and our doctor referred us to a play therapist.

Bella saw the therapist for the first time yesterday. She is great and we really like her and her plan of action. We met for 30 minutes then she played with Bella for 30. Next time Bella will have the full hour. The tears finally came running down my face as I knew this was serious for Bella.

I felt a sense of frustration from this whole thing because I had my counseling. I am on the road of recovering emotionally from this terrible disease and I have found things in my life that are making me happy so that I am not obsessing over Cancer 24/7.

A year later as I am on the road to healing, my baby girl, is just starting to mourn. That frustrates me that this had to happen. She is so tender, so soft hearted and she is full of love. She puts out a ray of sunshine (in my book) and for her to get so sick and break out from stress at the age of 7, a year after I have been diagnosed, puts a whole new frustration on Cancer. I hate it.

As the therapist and I talked through this, she made me realize (after being in denial) that Bella is afraid that I will die. She can not see that I am healing. She still sees me on chemo and she saw everything I went through. Sometimes I can't even see the light at the age of 32. Can you imagine the mind of a 7 year old?

After talking about the way she is with me and her obsessiveness with art, we were able to pinpoint some things that will help the healing process.

Bella has to go weekly which as you can imagine is a huge strain on us financially. This week alone we paid over $180.00 just for Bella not including my medical costs and it will be $70.00 each week. This thing about having no insurance really sucks. Plain and simple. We are barely keeping her head above water with our daily bills let alone medical bills and have exhausted all resources.

We are asking for you to pray for Cory and his job. We are pleading with God for the Hospital to call soon so that our finances can get headed in the right direction and we can have some INSURANCE!!!!!!

We know that Bella is a priority and we know that God will take care of her and the cost of the therapy. We are trusting that this will all soon come to an end and we can live without the stress of medical costs.

Thank you for posting sweet notes of encouragement and text messages. We are surrounded by amazing people and we Give God all the Glory for all things that are done. Thank you for being the hands and feet of God.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Life Is......


Well, just to write about my journey at this point.

Its October 16th 2011 (in case you didn't know) & where was I at this time last year? At my Oncologist office learning of my start date for my first round of Chemo Therapy. I also got my hair cut short this day last year so I had an easy transition when I lost my hair.


That is just so crazy! I can't believe it has been this long. Wow, Im pretty happy with where I am at right now.

So...where am I at 12 months later?

Im doing well. Feeling well. My doctor changed my Chemo regime a bit. I now get my Herceptin over 45 minutes instead of 30 because some other patients complained that it was causing them fatigue and since I was complaining of the same thing, they tried something new. It worked! I came home last week and felt great! I do have some early signs of lymph edema. Which is definitly something you want to watch out for. I am going to see a Physical Therapist to talk about preventive measures. My mother in law ordered me a sleeve that will help with pain and swelling. I am also going to see a GI doctor and possibly a colonoscopy. Are you jealous? :)

Other than that, I guess you can say Im healthy. My hair is growing rapidly. I can't manage it and I have no idea what to do with it. I need a haircut. LOL Thats fun. Here is a picture that was taken about a month ago. Its grown a lot more since then. LOL Its curly in the back. I asked God to give me curly BLONDE hair. He must have not heard me correctly. :)

Other than my hair growing back in crazy curls and wild, I have also started my own Cupcake Business. Yes...I know! Crazy as that sounds, but I did it. Im officially in. I delivered my first BIG ORDER of 150 cupcakes tonight to a 65th Birthday Party. Over 130 people will be tasting  my cupcakes so hopefully the business will blossom.

Here is a picture of the Logo & First Delivery Display

The other day I baked 3 new flavors. Triple Lemon with buttercream, Avocado Delight and Jalepeno with Cream Cheese Frosting. I was in the kitchen for many many hours. After we cleaned up and the kids went to bed, I plopped on the couch with Cory and rested in his arms. I said "I am wore out" and he said "but I love seeing you happy." I asked him to elaborate on that statement a bit ( I need details) and he told me how happy I looked when baking, and that he hasn't seen me this way in a long time. Like I found my purpose again.

Even though I was exhausted, he was right. I did find a purpose and I could give back somehow.

Im happy and honestly I haven't been thinking about cancer too much. Its here of course, I do have chemo every Monday, I can't really take it out of my vocabulary just yet, however I have found something that has given me joy in a way that I haven't felt in a long time.

Thank You God for getting me through this year. Thank you God for allowing me to start this business during my journey! Thank you God for allowing me to be a SURVIVOR through this all!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Dr. Admire & I have come to the end of the road......

I have always imagined boobs, Botox and bamboo to be in my life for awhile, however today was the last time that Dr. Admire and I need to meet unless there is a concern down the road.

I never thought this day would come. We have had a rough journey together to be honest. Double Mastectomy, Blown Boob (AKA Hematoma), Reconstruction (Unhappy camper) and another reconstruction (Happy Camper). I have yelled a bit, cried a lot, asked him why he was #1 in AMERICA, however my boobs look like this! Told him to not leave the operating table until he knew I would be satisfied, I questioned his every move, We laughed, I told him Thank You from the bottom of my heart and today we looked at each other and said "well this is it, looks great, you are free to get your "tattoo's" and let me know if you have any concerns!"

Wow! So...being that he mentioned tattoo's his "tattoo guy" was in the office working on a patient so he asked the man and the patient if I could come in and watch and ask questions. They both agreed. LOL. Its amazing how your modesty flies out the window after Breast Cancer. Well I am still modest, just not as freaked out anymore. LOL

So I went in and talked with the nurse/Tattoo man and asked a bunch of questions. The woman in the chair was a breast cancer patient (obviously). Her doctor found the lump which was only 1cm however had spread to her lymph nodes. She opted for a double mastectomy because of many reasons. She had her final surgery in May, had nipple reconstruction and now is getting the final touches. We talked and had some things in common. Her husband and I talked most of the time while she was being worked on. Awkward? A bit, but I put those weird thoughts out of my head.

I was in there for about 45 minutes and she was definitely feeling some pain even though we don't have much feeling. The nerves were pinching away from the site, but caused from the tattoos. So, some topical ointment went on and she felt much better.

He even gave me some ointment to put on an hour before my appointment so I wouldn't feel a thing.

After he finished one side, I had to go, and told him I would see him soon. Wow! I always said I wouldn't get anymore tattoo's but...HEY! Here we are!

I will be getting mine probably in December. They are not covered under Insurance which doesn't matter because I dont have any LOL and they are $300.00 (Lifetime warranty though) I know, you are laughing....but if you have a tattoo, does your artist offer that??? :)~

Anyway, the budget isn't allowing this to happen just yet, so we need to save and once we do, I go in and Im done!!! I can't wait for that to be over and to move on!

This Sunday, I decided to walk with Team Admire in the Susan G Komen walk. I have several reasons why I chose his team over many others but after today, I think its a great ending to a new beginning!

Regardless of my ill feelings over the past year, He gave me something that cancer took away. I have to be thankful!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

A quick Getaway......

I am so stoked for a few reasons. Being that the kids are on Fall Break and its still 104 degrees outside, the amount of things we can do here are limited. Bella did win a pass to Golfland at school for awesome behavior and attitude and she would like to claim that before she goes back to school so that might be happening next week before she returns so she can get her reward that she deserves.

Other than that there are no plans for us during this break. Normally we like to take some type of overnighter to get away but with the finances the way they are it doesn't seem doable.

However after carrying a heavy burden these past few days, I finally texted Cory and said "is there anyway we can get away to clear our minds". Lots of things are happening around the Bagby home and in our personal lives and its coming to a point when you can feel your body just moving through the day because there is no other way you can go.

I said "we have food, and gas so lets just drive up and camp it out" Whatever it takes, I wanted quality time away from drama, selfishness, guilt, reality, electronics, media, cupcakes LOL, and homework. I just needed to recharge and refocus my brain.

Cory found a free campground on Mt Lemon and so we thought we would just get away to the elevated climate and cool off a bit. However we were fortunate enough to have a call from our friends with a cabin and offered us the time away there. All we need is food, a few fishing poles and a good book. Oh, how Im craving coffee on the brisk morning with the sounds of nothing but nature.

Our original plan was to go to Chemo on Monday and leave from there and I would deal with the faitque up there and just push my way through it for my family, however I decided to call my oncologist and leave her a message telling her my situation, and being honest and said "I need a break from my weekly treatments, I need to refocus and get recharged" and I feel I begged my way through (even though Im sure I didn't). I got a call back a few minutes later and they gave me the Pass from chemo for the week and was told to "enjoy my time off". I cried! I was so thankful! Thank you Dr. Obenchain!

I just have to say Praise God, Praise God, Praise God! For you teachers out there, that have school year round, I want you to imagine the way you feel the last week of school. You are just getting through that week and your body, your mind can taste your two week vacation. Thats how I feel, however I have 7 months left of chemo and I JUST NEED A BREAK! These past few weeks, we are facing issues in our home after a chemo day, mulitple doctors visits, pouring out finances and I just want to focus on my husband and my two kids for a couple of days and not think about cancer, the infusions, the medical costs or anything else that causes stress. 

Im so grateful to escape because I know reality will be here when we return. But for now...Im counting the hours down to a place that will clear my mind and rejoice in what God is doing even in the midst of a storm.