Thursday, May 31, 2012

Another Awesome Miracle From God ...

Wednesday was an awesome God filled day.  I cannot begin to understand how anyone cannot believe there is not a God in Heaven.  Our daily walks through life shows us all that He has made.  When a baby is born, His miracles are proven all the more.  I have another grand daughter and I am ecstatic to introduce you to ....


Above:  Daddy holding his angel.

Above:  Getting some statistics out of the way
before her first bath.

Above:  Not happy.  Got the first bath out of
the way.  

Above:  I'm OK now.  

Above:  Look at her eyes.

Above:  Three generations.  

Above:  My first time to hold Brooklyn.  Yes,
those are tears sparkling below my eyes.
God's precious miracle.

Above:  Two happy parents.  
I picked Braxton up and took him to the hospital in the afternoon and he didn't seem too interested.  He was more interested in exploring Mommy's hospital room and eating the snacks.  When she squealed out a couple of times, he looked at her but other than that, not much from him.  He also spent the night with us and everything went very smooth.  The storms didn't wake him ... however, I was up several times checking on him.  

Matthew 19:14   Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”

Blessed ... thanking Jesus for all the blessings He has provided me.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Exciting Times ....

Tuesday found me finishing up my 33 round of radiation.  It wasn't so bad but I am glad it is completed.  With every round came the reminder it came to mind ... zaapppp any remaining cancer cells that could be in the area.  I truly appreciated the radiation techs - Vanessa and Billy - they are the sweetest and always explained anything to me and answered all my questions.  Thank you Vanessa and Billy.

TODAY ... my new grandbaby arrives.  It is scheduled for Bonnie to be taken in for c-section at noon.  I can't wait.  My prediction ... Baby girl (Brooklyn Leigh) weighing in at 6 lbs 11 oz, 18 1/2 maybe 19 inches long, dark hair (like Bonnie's was when she was born).  I told Bonnie this last night and she said .. Mom, are you doing mental telepathy and laughed.  I just told her ... This is what I think.  I can't wait for the new little one to get here.  Braxton is getting to spend the night(s) with Grammy and Aunt Lish while Mommy and Daddy are at the hospital.  I am telling you that God is amazing ... the timing during all of my treatments has worked out well for all the holidays and just yesterday I finished my radiation. During my surgery and treatments, I have not been able to help much with Braxton and Madelyn so I am thankful to get to be part of this experience.  Praising the Lord ...

Yesterday the guys I work closely with took me to lunch to celebrate the completion of radiation.  My immediate supervisor made a toast for the completion of this leg of my journey.  These guys are the sweetest and great to work for and with.  Thank you guys.

Many Praises:
*  Radiation treatments are complete.
*  I feel good and my energy levels continue to get better.
*  God continues to put many wonderful people in my path and I get to share His awesome love and what He has done for me.
*  The amazing women that are going through the same thing as I am.  We share our experiences and lift each other up in prayer.
*  My incredible family who have supported me through the last seven months.
*  Wonderful friends who have given me encouragement just when I needed it most.
*  Opportunities to help others.  I have always said ... there is no question that I won't answer.
*  Many many other praises.

Prayer Requests:
* My friend, Judy, has her double mastectomy today.  The recent lumpectomy showed there was more cancer than original diagnosed.
*  Leslie, who has two more radiation treatments.
*  Wendi and Michelle as they continue through remaining treatments and the side affects that follow ... even when the chemo is finished.
*  Wendy, in Amarillo, as she continues through her treatments and has such a great positive attitude.
*  Shirley, as she continues her battle.
*  Anyone diagnosed recently with a dreadful disease.
I'm happy to pray for you and yours.  Please email me and I would love to pray for you.

I have concerns for several people today.  I want everyone to be healthy and not take good health for granted.  You cannot continue abusing your body with too much food, drink (alcohol), smoking, inactivity, stress and other things ... expecting your body to continue holding up.  You body will eventually give out and who knows what will happen.  Please take care of yourself and know your body is God's temple and should be taken care of as such.  I find comfort using one of my precious Jarrod verses ...

Psalm 138:8   The LORD will accomplish what concerns me; Thy loving kindness, O LORD is everlasting; Do not forsake the works of Thy hands.

As I close today, I give all the Praise to my sweet Jesus.  He has walked with me and talked with me, He has carried me during those times that I couldn't carry myself.  He wants my focus on Him and not the worries or concerns of my world.  I bring Him my issues and He handles everything.  

Blessed and praying blessings for you today.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Happy Memorial Day !!!

Remembering those who have fought and died so that WE can live in a free country.  Thankful for all.
Blessings to the families who have lost a loved one.

Mid Sunday morning it was time to put the new light fixture up in the hall bathroom.  I had been contemplating the procedure all night and yesterday morning.  I do have to think these things out before I do them.  I am not afraid of the electricity but primarily installing the fixture so it looks professional.  For some reason the home builders did not put a metal electrical box in the wall behind the fixture so per the instructions I didn't have anything to screw the brace to.  GREAT!  I think I over thought the process because once I was finished I thought about my long procedure and went ... duuhhh Gena, it was not that hard.  I knew exactly what I should have done AFTER I was finished.  Anyway, once I got the bracket put up, Alicia came and held the fixture so I could wire it.  She was a little uneasy just holding the fixture ... I kept telling her to not turn the light switch on.  When I got it wired and before I attached it to the wall, I got a bulb to ensure it was going to work.  It did!  
Below is the fixture!!! 

Above:   Lights off !!! 

Above:  Lights on !!!
Above: This pretty green color replaced the
lovely subtle yellow that had been in that
bathroom for years.  See my bird picture and
the birds sitting on the toilet?  I love birds.
There are two things I have tried to get accomplished since Friday and this morning I can only remember one of them.  Paint my toe nails.  <laughing>  Yep, I've been trying to get this done for days.  First I have to go to Sally's Beauty Supply to get the Out The Door top coat that helps the paint stay on.

Madelyn had been running a temp since last Wednesday night.  Alicia took her to the Urgent Child Care that evening in case she needed to start antibiotics since the new baby is coming this week and Braxton will be here with us for a few days.  They ran strep test - negative, checked her ears - negative so it was diagnosed as viral.  That means you just have to let it run it's course.  It has and she hasn't run a temp in two days.  All the toys have been sanitized, floors have been heat sanitized, counter tops, door knobs, anything that might have been touched has been sanitized.  Alicia also discovered last night that Madelyn has cut a few more teeth that we didn't know about ... hmmm I wonder if these new teeth could have caused that temp.  Either way ... Praise the Lord that she is all better.

This week there are a few things happening and I'm looking forward to all.  Tuesday I take my last round of radiation.  I will miss my sweet Vanessa every morning but I know she is happy for me to have this part of my journey coming to an end.  Wednesday my third grand baby will be born.  There has not been a gender announced but Grammy believes this baby will be a girl.  Brooklyn Leigh.  Wednesday night is when Braxton will come stay at Grammy's house for a couple of days.  If all goes well, Bonnie thinks they will get to come home on Friday.  I have so much to look forward to and most of all be thankful for ... Thank you Jesus.

Blessed beyond measure ... praying blessings for you today as we remember those who died for us.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Sunday Sunday ...

Saturday morning found Alicia, Madelyn and I out to breakfast at my new favorite place.  Bluebonnet Cafe in Haltom City.  It's so good and such a sweet home town feel with all the folks that come in there.  I grew up in Haltom City and it will always have a special place in my heart.  As we were leaving the cafe, we walked by a table with three men sitting and having breakfast.  One of them caught my eye <smile> and he winked and said ... how ya doing?  I told him ... I am doing great.  This prompted about a ten minute conversation with all three of the guys telling me about women they knew who had gone through breast cancer.  The winking guy told me that not every one can pull off the bald look but he said I definitely could.  That may not mean much to anyone else, but it makes my heart sing.  A stranger who was nice, polite ... blessed me with his words.  I shared my blog cards with them and ask them to share the information with their sisters, wives, girlfriends ... who ever the women were in their lives.  God continues to put people in my path that bless me.

After breakfast we headed to Home Depot.  Alicia wanted to paint her bathroom.  We got paint and a few things she needed and I got a big bag of potting soil, more flower seeds and two crooked neck squash plants.  I'm all about the outdoors even when it's humid.  I had a fake (plastic) whiskey barrel pot and we planted sunflower seeds ... of all things ... I just want to see if they will grow ... in some hanging baskets planted alyssum (colored babys breath type plant) and some more morning glories in the pot by the arbor trellis.  It's warm enough now that these seeds should germinate pretty quick.  Alicia painted the bathroom and all I have to do today is put up the new light fixture.  Can't wait ... it'll look so nice.  

Pat and I went to Sherwin Williams Paint Store and got a quart of the paint that I wanted to try on the outside of my house.  I painted around the big garage door last night and .... SCORE .... it's perfect.  Now to proceed with getting the rotted wood replaced in the back, the new gutters put up and then the painters to come and paint the entire outside of the house.  I'm getting really excited.  I was dragging my feet because I had not found a color that was good with my brick but now I have.  Pictures to come.

After a quick lunch of grilled cheese sandwiches and humus with potato chips <yicks>, I went to keep Braxton while Bonnie and Buddy went to an afternoon wedding.  Brax and I played a bit and then I put him down for a nap.  I read while he was down and napped a little myself ... woke up and read some more.  I'm reading Dorothy Newton's book title Silent Tears.  It's a tough read ... reading about all the abuse Dorothy has endured during her life but she hangs on to her faith and her God.  Pick a copy up and read ... it will bless you.

Braxton woke up after a good 2 hour nap and we cuddled and then played.  Mommy and Daddy got home and we visited and I left.  Of course it was Sonic happy hour so I had to run get a big unsweetened ice tea.

The evening was filled with dinner and cleaning up, picking some more tomatoes, propping up the anaheim pepper plant because it is so tall it is leaning.  Shower and reading ... then a good night sleep and here we are on Sunday morning.  Refreshed and ready to see what God has in store for today.

My radiation area only got moisturized once yesterday and I could really feel the stiffness last night.  I was happy to get my shower and then get some of the thick healing cream on the area.  I have done my lymph node drainage procedures this morning and moisturized. I plan to moisturize the area more today.

Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.

Blessings to all on this fine Lord's day.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Friday This and That!

My day started off at 6:00am with a round of radiation.  The other day I counted seconds for this 'boost' radiation and it lasted 18 seconds.  I may have already told you that but I'm telling you again because my memory is lacking. <laughing>  Today was treatment #33 and next Tuesday will be my last treatment.  I will miss all my early morning friends but as normal ... I will be glad that it is over.   Another part of the journey complete.

On my way home from radiation (because I was off today), I stopped at Busy B Bakery ... big mistake.  I got six kolaches and three sausage rolls.  You see I have more than one addiction ... donuts/pastries, as well as, the the Welch's Fruit Snacks (I just finished two packages of those).  I ended up eating four kolaches and one sausage roll.  I could not believe it ... well maybe I could ... because I am addicted to pastries.  I very seldom have such sweet delights ... once I eat the first one, keep the rest of them out of the way.  Quick story ... when I was just out of high school and working, my Mother would fix me a can of biscuits (10) every morning while I was getting ready for work.  I would eat every single biscuit slathered in butter and preserves/jelly and if my brother or sister ask for one, I would get really irritated.  I never had a weight problem as I was moving and shaking all the time.  I reckon I better be careful now because I ain't moving and shaking quite as much as I did back them.

Little bunny Fu Fu has visited my garden and I cannot believe what he has chosen to eat.  One of my  JALEPENO PEPPER plants including the leave.  If you remember the story of little bunny Fu Fu, the good witch catches him and boops him in the head.  Well I don't plan on doing that but I do plan on keeping the little booger out of my garden.

Above:  Do you see what little bunny Fu Fu
has done to this plant?

Above:  A bell pepper in the top right corner.
Destroyed jalepeno pepper plant in the
I know his mouth had to be burning because these jalepenos are hot hot hot.  Why couldn't he have eaten the anaheim pepper plants or the HOT cherry pepper plants?

Above:  The hottest cherry peppers ever.
No, it had to be one of my favorites.  <laughing sort of>  I try to keep sunflower seeds thrown out at night so the animals will stay away from my garden.  We may be putting a little fence around the gardens soon... I don't care what it looks like.  <smile>

Recently I posted my redneck water sprinkler system and I had friend ask me how I did it.  It is really easy and it does get my front yard watered with only one move of the sprinkler system. <laughing>

Above:  Step 1 ... Connect a water hose to the

Above:  Step 2 ... Send the dog in tothe yard to
ward off mean old spirits (laughing).  Connect
the water hose to a sprinkler that has a connection
on both sides so you can run an additional water
hose out the other side of the sprinkler to
connect another sprinkler.

Above:  Tell the dog to get in the way of the
picture taking before you snap the picture.
Just above Tootie's back is the other sprinkler.
One of the sprinklers goes round and round and
the other one goes back and forth.  Covers
a lot of ground.  It was worth the $30 and the effort
for me.

The other night we had baked potatoes for dinner ... stuffed with butter (my butter of course is the healthy Benacol), cheese and Jimmy Dean's breakfast sausage... and ... I must say they were so good.  When I was cooking the potatoes in the microwave, one of them was rocking back and forth so I grabbed my iPhone and videoed it.  I think this is what is meant when they said .... Hot Potato.... Turn your sound up because of course I had to narrate.   <laughing>

Oh ... my eye brows and eyelashes are growing back.  I even had to shape up one of my eye brows one day this week... it was getting a little unruly.  My new eyelashes are tiny but they are there.  My hair on my head is starting to fill in across the top.  And I must mention ... my nose hair is grown back as well.  I am so thankful for all of it.

I'm off now to go look at a Sherwin Williams Paint store for paint samples to paint the outside of my house.  I haven't had much luck with the other two places ... Kelly Moore or Home Depot.  I have a color of brick that I think is hard to match or at least coordinate the colors and this is kinda a big deal. Wish me luck.

 Radiation has gone  and  I have only one treatment remaining.
*  The people I have met while taking my radiation early in the mornings.  The girl at the front desk,
the man who is after me with his treatments, the security guard.  All sweet people.
*  This extra day off, making for a four day weekend.
*  The hour and half nap I just took.
*  So much more....

Prayer Requests:
*  My friend, B, who is waiting the results of  a diagnostic breast sonogram.
*  My survivor sisters ... Wendi, Michelle, Leslie, Wendy ... who continue to take their treatments.
*  My long time friend, Judy, who is beginning her own journey.
*  My friend, Shirley, who is fighting a tough battle with leukemia.
*  Those who have just gotten a bad diagnosis of a dreadful life changing disease.

Look around and see the all your blessings.  Do not take a single one of them for granted.  Our sweet Jesus gave it all for us.  You and me!  Thank Him today.

Blessed and praying blessings for you.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Many Stories to Share ...

First off, let me tell you about my new addiction.  Welch's Fruit Snacks ... yes, they are those little gummy snacks that are fruit shaped and fruit flavored (duuuhhh Gena).  They are tart yet a little sweet and their fruitiness tastes so much like the real fruit.  I can easily eat 3 packages of 13 in each package in one sitting.  I'm currently on my second package since getting home from work 10 minutes ago.  Since my loss of appetite, I figure if I find something that appeases the situation ... why not indulge!  If you haven't tried them ... I highly suggest you go get some and if you do not like them, I'll send you my address and you can send them to me.  <laughing>

Praise the Lord for my sister who insisted on hiring Justin, our long time family friend, to mow and take care of our yards every two weeks.  Honestly it is so nice coming home and all the yard work is done and all I have to do is enjoy it and ... it looks so pretty.

Tuesday began my 'boost' radiation treatments for the last five rounds.  These will concentrate on just the tumor area of my scar.  The rectangle that I've had drawn on my chest for a couple of weeks is the sole target.  I have to tell you that I am pretty happy about that because the other parts of me was getting nice and toasty.  Like under my left arm ... reach up right now and give yourself a big ole pinch and see how it feels ... hurts, doesn't it?  Yes, that is a very tender spot and after 28 rounds of direct radiation, it gets even more tender than when you just pinched yourself.  Your pain will subside after a few minutes, this tenderness is going to stick around and should begin subsiding my middle of next week.  I am not complaining though.  The end of the radiation tunnel is in sight ... three treatments left.  Below are the pictures Vanessa, Radiation Tech, took yesterday with the new contraption thing that holds the metal plate that has a cut out in the same exact shape as my rectangle.  I counted seconds this morning and the radiation was about 18 seconds total.  Radiation is not administered by seconds but by some other form of measurement but I count seconds.  <smile>

Above:  The added piece of equipment gets
a little more personal and up close than the
with the other radiation.

Above:  Yeppers just a little closer.

Above:  OH and Mr. Bolus had a baby bolus.
This is him.  Fits nicely over the marked area.
See the burn under my arm.  It may not look
to bad but it is very tender.  

So yesterday when I left the Center and was headed to work, I got stopped at the red light at the corner of Rosedale and Hemphill (I think) ... it was an intersection.  At that time of the morning (6:10am) there are not a lot of people on the roads.  While I am stopped at red lights, I have a habit of looking around at other cars and people that are in them.  I looked to my right and there was this pretty newer model red car with this man in it.  He was holding his coffee cup and starring at me.  When I looked at him, he raised his brows and smiled as if to say ... How are you doing?  Interjection: I'm sure he doesn't see bald women sitting at stop lights a lot.  Anyway ... I smiled back him ... Nodded my head and gave him a thumbs up.  He smiled back and shook his head as if he knew I was doing well.  Communication without any words ... facial expressions ... and two smiles.  Priceless and touched my heart.

Today at work I was taking a UPS box down to the first floor and got on the elevator which already had two women on it.  One of them did a double take looking at me and said ... Are you going through what I've been through?  I said ... If you are talking about breast cancer, the answer is yes.  And she said ... yes, that's what she was talking about.  I reached over and touched her arm and said ... then you are one of my survivor sisters.  I got off the elevator on the floor she was getting off on and we had a wonderful chat.  She is just shy of 5 years as a survivor.  It ended with both of us being positive people and we knew we could beat cancer.  Again ... Priceless and my hear was touched again.

And then ... this afternoon I had another UPS that I needed to put in the drop box so I headed back down to the first floor.  Remember the long hall I talked about recently that we had to walk down to get to the post office or the Fed Ex/UPS drop boxes ... well I was walking down that long hall and there was a lady standing at the end with her hands held up as if she were in Praise.  (She was waiting for the Post Office to open at 2:30)  As I got closer, she had turned away from me but I could hear she was singing these words ...  When I call on Jesus .... and I sang  ... ALL things are possible.  She turned around and finished the lyric ... we smiled and both said ... Praise the Lord.  Again ... Truly Priceless and really touched my heart.

You see ... It's not about the cancer ... it's about what Jesus has done in my life.  There is so much more than cancer that has gone on with me in the last eight months ... my relationship with Jesus has grown to a much deeper love degree and my faith has deepened tremendously.  Cancer cannot win this battle or the war ... there is nothing that can compare to my awesome Jesus.

Today I leave you with a happy and love filled heart ... a heart that has been touched in so many ways in just the last two days.  God did not give me the cancer or make me take all these treatments but He has been right beside me the whole way.  Thank you precious Jesus.

*  My sister.  She's the bestest sister a girl could ask for.
*  Radiation has gone well and at this point, I have only three treatments remaining.
*  Vanessa, my Radiation Tech, who is the cutest and sweetest person.
*  The people I have met while taking my radiation early in the mornings.  The girl at the front desk,
the man who is after me with his treatments, the security guard.  All sweet people.
*  A four day weekend for me coming up.  Yes, I am thankful for this time off.
*  So much more....

Prayer Requests:
*  My friend, B, who the doctor just found a lump in her breast.  She's waiting for an appointment for diagnostic mammo and sonogram.
*  My survivor sisters ... Wendi, Michelle, Leslie, Wendy ... who continue to take their treatments.
*  My long time friend, Judy, who is beginning her own journey.
*  My friend, Shirley, who is fighting a tough battle with leukemia.
*  Those who have just gotten a bad diagnosis of a dreadful life changing disease.

I know God hears our prayers ... remember to thank Him.

Blessed .... and remember  ....  It's not about the cancer ... It's all about Jesus.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Come With Me to Radiation

Today I had my final over all round of radiation.  By overall, I mean the radiation is from almost my sternum to my under arm.  There have been 28 rounds of that ... 10 of them with the Mr. Bolus.  In a minute you will see Mr. Bolus and today was my last day with him.  <smile>  Tomorrow I begin the five rounds of "boost" radiation which is the electron radiation that is pretty much topical and will be applied in the square drawn on my chest around most of the scar on my left side.  They will radiate <smile> where my tumor was in my left breast on the top since the mean ole cancer had broken out of the milk duct.  Only five more radiation treatments ... should finish up next Tuesday  and then grand baby #3 will be born on Wednesday.  God has been so good to me with the timing of my treatments.

So come with me now on my trip to radiation this morning.  These are pictures of me this time, not someone I found on the internet.

Above:  This is how my radiation appointments begin.
I am positioned on the table. and the radiation
tech leaves and closes the big one foot thick door.
The big machine above my head takes
x-rays and administers my radiation.
  That big arm swings to both sides.

Above:  This is the radiation area under my left arm.
It is pretty burned and a little uncomfortable
... truly like a bad sunburn.  Do you see the red
cross beams, that's how they line me up and ensure
I'm getting the radiation where it should be.

Above:  The arm has been positioned to the right of me
to get in place.  Once the radiation is finished
on that side, it swings over me and is positioned
to administer the radiation under my left arm.
I only take radiation on my left side which is
where my mean ole tumor was that broke out of the
milk duct.  

Above:  Meet Mr. Bolus aka the bolus.  This is a
piece of squishy stuff that has something like
silicon in it.  Mr. Bolus is used every other day
so that I am not getting straight radiation all the
time.  It acts as a shield so the radiation is
primarily more topical than the days without it.

Above:  Kind of dark and not the best but this
is my new friend, Vanessa.  She has administered
most of my radiation and is such a pleasant person
as they all are at the Center.

I hope you enjoyed the trip to radiation with me.  I feel blessed tonight as I write this blog that I am where I am right now as opposed to where I was 8 months ago.  September 15, 2011 will be forever burned in my soul.  It brings tears to my eyes now as I type this and remember that day so well.  But ... my awesome Father has brought me through so many troubled waters and I am getting to the other side safe and sound ... just as He promised.  Thank you Father.

I appreciate each and every one of you who stop by to read about my continuing journey.  I am blessed and very humbled that you would find my story interesting enough to continue to walk with me.

Blessed beyond measure ... all Because He Lives.  If you are not familiar with the song
Because He Lives, please read the lyrics below ....

Writer Bill Gaither

God Sent His Son, They Called Him Jesus;
He Came To Love, Heal And Forgive.
He Lived And Died To Buy My Pardon;
An Empty Grave Is There To Prove My Savior Lives.

Because He Lives
I Can Face Tomorrow
Because He Lives
All Fear Is Gone
Because I Know He Holds The Future 
And Life Is Worth The Living 
Just Because He Lives

How Sweet To Hold A Newborn Baby,
And Feel The Pride And Joy He Gives;
But Greater Still The Calm Assurance:
This Child Can Face Uncertain Day Because He Lives.


And Then One Day I'll Cross The River;
I'll Fight Life's Final War With Pain.
And Then, As Death Gives Way To Vict'ry,
I'll See The Lights Of Glory And I'll Know He Reigns.

Blessed and praying blessings for you.

Saturday ... Sunday ... and Monday Morning ...

Saturday morning came around and boy was I glad.  My radiation area needed a break.  The area under my left arm is pretty red and tender.  I knew this was coming so there has been no surprises as far as the discomfort.  The skin on my chest is tight and leathery.  I have one more over all radiation treatment and then Tuesday the boost electron radiation begins in just the marked off area which is over my scar which is where my tumor was.  Praising the Lord that radiation is coming to an end.

It was a great weekend.  I cannot say that I did anything out of the ordinary ... all my days are special.  I look forward to getting up and putting my feet on the floor and getting the day started.  I finished the book I was reading, written by Julia Ziglar, Zig Ziglar's daughter ... Growing Up Ziglar.  It was a very good book.  The I started the Josh Hamilton book ... Beyond Belief.  Bonnie had told me that I wouldn't be able to put it down and she was right.  Oh my goodness Josh Hamilton walked through troubled waters and fire and flame to get to where he is today.  If you know someone who is an addict ... get them a copy ... pray that they will read it and get you a copy to gain insight on an addicts mind.

Today is my last over all radiation treatment.  The discomfort under my left arm is still here and I pray that it heals and gets better soon.  Tomorrow the 'boost' electron radiation begins which will focus on the area where my mean tumor was.

Yesterday I did my weekly cooking or most of it.  I baked a rack of pork ribs, a small pork loin roast and grilled some spinach and feta chicken burgers.  I cooked a batch of squash and roasted some fresh brussel sprouts.  We have some fresh tomatoes and avocados to make salad.  I find cooking this way sure makes dinner much easier during the week.  I am still lacking my appetite ... breakfast is my favorite meal and the remainder of the day, I eat very little.  I feel great though so I am not worried about my eating habits.

My grandbabies continue to be the apples of my eye.  What a joy they are ... even if they are fussy.  Next Wednesday, May 30, grand baby #3 will be here.  I'm looking forward to having another angel to spoil.

Time is drawing neigh for me to head out to radiation and work so I better close this post.  I hope you have a very pleasant Monday and remember to take care of your health.  You will be thankful you did.

*  Six more radiation treatments.
*  Feeling good and hip pain has gotten so much better.
 New grand baby coming next week.
*  My survivor sisters that I keep in touch with.   
*  Many many more ...

Prayer Requests:
*  My survivor sisters, Judy, who is beginning her journey.
*  My survivor sister, Michelle, who continues on with her chemo.  
*  My survivor sister, Wendi.  
*  My survivor sister, Wendy in Amarillo.
*  My retired NWS friend whose wife, Shirley, is fighting many things including leukemia.  
*  All those who were recently diagnosed with a dreadful disease. 

Blessed ... Because He Lives!

Friday, May 18, 2012

Comments and Other Stuff ....

Over the course of my baldness, I have had many folks make comments about how pretty my head is shaped.  This afternoon I went down to the first floor of the Federal Building where I work to drop off a Fed Ex package.  Dropped off my package and turned around and headed back down the long hall and there was a lady behind me.  All of a sudden I hear ... You have the prettiest shaped head ...  I told her thank you and I am starting to believe it because people keep telling me that.  I had one lady on my floor the other day run up to me at the elevators and said ... I wanted to tell you that I could never pull off the bald look because I know my head is not pretty ... I told her thank you and I was quite sure if faced with the opportunity for being bald, she would look just fine.  Confession time and I have to admit ... I was a c-section baby and did not pass through the dark tight tunnel that many babies pass through in order to enter the world ... at this point in my life ... I'm pretty thankful.  Speaking of heads ... and hair ... mine is getting longer and little fuller.  The top seems to be taking it's sweet time of growing but I am sure it will fill in here pretty soon and if it doesn't, I'm not beyond using a product to make it.

I took some pictures of my radiation area and I am betwixt and between as to whether to post them or not.  I have a good sunburn going on, however, I am Praising the Lord that it is not too awfully painful. I have one more overall radiation treatment on Monday and after that I begin the 'boost' radiation as it is called for five days.  One more week and one day and I am finished with radiation.  Praise the Lord ... but I must say ... it was not bad.  Dr. C and the radiation techs accommodated my 6:00am appointments for my whole 33 treatments and for that I am thankful.

When I met my survivor sister, Leslie and our friend, Donna for lunch last Friday, I told them the story about before I started chemo and how I had it all scoped out where I would sit each time in the corner of the chemo room.  There were only two chairs in there and I would not have to talk to anyone and I could be isolated and left alone.  You know when you're first diagnosed you don't really want to talk to anyone or see anyone so you want to just hide.  Well as I have mentioned before, the prisoners take their chemo on Monday (same day as mine was) and guess what?  They got to sit in the corner where I wanted to sit.  I wanted to act like a child and say .... NOT fair!  I wanted to sit in that corner.  Well the corner only had two chairs in it and the other chair was for the guard to sit in.  So with the guard and the prisoner that left no chairs for me to go hibernate and act like a shy child and therefore I was forced to go sit in one of the other three areas where there were six chairs in each.  Ugghhhh ... or so I thought.  As it turns out ... sitting in those other areas with other people ...  I made friends.  Friends I know will be around most likely for the rest of my life.  People that know what I am going through because they are going through it too.  I have to thank the Lord for prisoners who took chemo on the same day as me and got to sit in the corner ... it forced me to be a big girl and put my big girl panties on and sit in one of the other areas where people I met blessed my life.

Speaking of prisoners ... one day last week when I finished with my radiation and got back to the changing room sitting area ... there she sat ... the prisoner who took chemo at the same time I did.  She was sitting there with her feet shackled and the guard was in a chair opposite her.  I walked in the sitting area and said ... NEXT ... and they laughed.  After I got changed and out of that hospital gown that we have to wear (pictures coming soon) and got ready to walk out ... I said ... Have a good day!  They smiled and bid me a good day as well.  When I got to my car and headed to work I thought to myself about that prisoner lady ... What did she do that she ended up in prison?  Was she remorseful?  Would she ever leave prison?  And then I thought ... I cannot imagine being in prison and taking chemo and not having the comforts of home.  That blew my mind ... being in a prison where you have a hard bunk and not a soft bed, couldn't get up and go to the kitchen and get something to eat or drink when you felt like you could.  What if the chemo had a really bad affect on the prisoner lady and she got like throw up sick?  What then?  My heart strings were pulled that day for the prisoner lady.  I've not seen her back ... however ... that was the day that my appointment was a little later in the morning so perhaps she goes at that time all the time.  I prayed for the prisoner lady that day.

One day this week when I went in the changing room where we keep out hospital gowns and in my little cubby hole there laid an envelope with a card in in.  It was from my survivor sister, Leslie, telling me how she had enjoyed our lunch last Friday.  I thought that was just the sweetest.

Above:  No my last name is not Crain but the
card covers up Morrison.  I roll my gown up
really small and push it to the back of my cubby.
I know this is a surprise but I am a
GERM-O-PHOBE ... big time!

At night after I've had my shower and go back to the den to sit and watch a little TV or read, if I am sitting on the couch, I am right under an air exchange vent and if the a/c is on, I have to cover my head because it gets cold.  I keep those little throw blankets on the corners of my couch and love seat 1) because you never know when it might be a bit nippy in my house and 2) the dog lays up there and I don't want her laying on the arms of the furniture and 3) I'm weird.   Here's a picture of me with the throw over my bald head because the air was running.   ...  LOL  and it's OK to laugh ...

Above:  Solemn look ..

Above:  Fat look ... hello.  Some of these self
portraits are not very flattering.  The bright light behind
me is not my halo, I had removed it for the night
<smile> it's the lamp.  
Tonight is my night off in the kitchen.  Alicia and Madelyn are going to eat dinner with her Dad and step Mom and little brother.  I guess I will go pick up something as I didn't eat much lunch in anticipation of going to Olive Garden.  Guess I'll have an old piece of cheese.  <smile>  Oh well ... not a biggie.  My appetite is still missing ... I eat a smidge to keep my strength up and try to eat protein so my hair continues to grow but as far as ever really getting hungry, it doesn't happen.  My weight has maintained at 129-130 and I'm happy about that.  I figure my appetite will come back eventually and probably so will my weight.

I have decided I have made a terrible mistake by not putting tomato cages around my tomato plants when they were just twigs.  These plants are being weighted down with all the tomatoes that are on them.  I found two more ripe tomatoes that were down under the plant a while ago when I was out there.  I check the plants every day to see what is starting to ripen so I can watch it and lo and behold ... found two more tomatoes.

Yesterday evening I turned the soaker hose on in the front flower bed to water the shrubs and elephant ears and guess when I remembered it was on?  On my way to the bank this afternoon to make an extra payment on my house principal.  Of course I wanted to turn around right then and come home and turn it off and decided differently as I figured another 15 minutes to the 24 hours it had been on wasn't going to hurt anything.  I started thinking ... cha ching ... there goes my water bill sky high.  Oh well ... lessons learned ... set the microwave timer when I turn the soaker hose on ... when the timer dings ... try to remember why I set it to begin with.  <laughing>  Yes, sometimes my memory is that bad.  <laughing more>

Last Saturday Pat and I were coming home from Sam's and God was using His crayolas again.  He amazingly colored the blue patch of sky that is between the white and gray patches.  I thought this was so pretty and amazing and I had to share.

Above:  God's coloring book.
I leave today with many --->
*  Six more radiation treatments.
*  Feeling good and hip pain is not so bad.
*  Bills are paid.  Waaa hooo ... and there's a little money left.
*  Life is getting back to the normal range.
*  New grand baby coming the day after my final round of radiation. That's May 30.
*  My survivor sisters that I keep in touch with.  
*  Many many more ...

Prayer Requests:
*  I have a friend who had a lumpectomy week before last.  When the results came in from the pathology reports, it seems the invasive ductal carcinoma had broke out of the milk duct and become invasive lobular carcinoma (same thing I had in my right breast).  She will now have a mastectomy in a week and half.  Please pray for her. Cancer diagnosis is so devastating.
*  My survivor sister, Michelle, who continues on with her chemo.  She's having some pretty bad side affects which is pretty normal the more treatments you have but just because it's 'normal' doesn't make it any better.
*  My survivor sister, Wendi, who is finished with chemo and continues to have side affects.  Chemo does not immediately leave your body just because it's the last treatment.
*  My survivor sister, Wendy in Amarillo, who took another round of chemo this week.  They are grueling.
*  My retired NWS friend whose wife was diagnosed with leukemia.  It's not good. Pray for her hubby as he is taking care of her.
*  All those who were recently diagnosed with a dreadful disease.

I personally thank you for all your prayers.  Thoughts are good but prayers are so much better.

I am here ....
Because He Lives !!!