It’s been awhile!
I finally had my PET scan on January 16th. The scan went good. Those are always easy. You go back and they put an IV in and push the radioactive liquid into you (kinda scary I guess). Then you drink a huge cup of lemonade tasting contrast, with a bad after taste, then they have you sit in a “radioactive” room for about 45 mins or so. Then they let you go to the bathroom. Then you go lay down on the table for the scan. You’re there for about 25 mins and that’s it. The only bummer is, the hospital is way up in odgen. It’s over an hour drive each way. Could be worse I guess. I had my follow up appointment with Dr Bott on January 22nd. I wasn’t too nervous going into the appointment, just anxious. So the news is, the spot on my left pelvic lining (that they saw in the last scan back in October 2013) has grown a little bit. Not a ton, but yes it’s growing. I came out of the appointment feeling frustrated and a little defeated. I’ve completely changed my diet, I’ve been taking lots of capsule and powder supplements that with other cancer patients have been working to kill/reduce the cancer. So to hear that mine has grown is frustrating. I guess my cancer really is aggressive. That really truly is so hard to hear a Dr tell you that. I’m not giving up on the natural route. Just need to be more aggressive…against the aggressive J I’ll never do chemo again. I’m at 105lbs, and lost 5lbs just with one round of chemo last time. So to me, I’d rather be happy and go sooner than to be sick on the couch for weeks and lose weight and wither away and be miserable. I scan again in 3 months. If it is still growing I’ll talk to the Dr about surgery. So we’ll see in 3 months. I’m still praying that the cancer will go away but of course if it’s my plan than I will follow it. I’ve been thinking about my life and how happy I am and if my time came earlier than later to go back to my Heavenly Father, I’d be okay with this. Yes it’s a little scary and yes I probably won’t get to experience having kids on this earth, but there’s always the next life. I’ve had lots of people tell me “you’re not doing chemo? Well you’re too young to go”. Yes I am young, but again, I’m happy with where I’m at in life and I’d see my family and loved ones again. I choose to be happy. Even if that’s returning to Heavenly Father early. Thanks for all the prayers, texts, phone calls, meals etc. I am truly blessed with amazing people in my life.
Sunday, October 27, 2013
Well I had my 1st round of chemo and it was pure hell.
I went in on Oct 9th at 7am and had my port placed. When I had my 1st one placed they put me out. They also placed it on my left side and higher up. I was awake for it this time, it was put in on my right side and lower than my other one. It was a really weird feeling being awake for it. I was a little nervous to be awake but they gave me "comfort" drugs and would talk to me during the surgery. I could feel the needles going in but I didn't really care, I was just so sleepy. I remember them talking to me, telling me what they were doing and I would respond with okay. When they were done I went into the recovery room for a little while to wake up. They said okay when you're ready they're waiting upstairs for you. I had to prep myself for it. I would've been way more nervous had I not been so sleepy :-) Guess that was the plus side of doing chemo right after surgery.
Bran came with me to the surgery and then my mom met up with us later in the chemo room. Bran had school so he took off later. I felt pretty good once they started chemo. My good friend Erica works in the building so she brought me some yogurt...tasted amazing...I tried to eat a protein bar and drink fluids but as soon as the chemo starts going in my appetite goes away. I hate it. I once again pee'd every hour while being infused. Last time the side effects that started right away were my neuropathy, when I would touch cold things and cold water on my hands, it stung. This time my body was titching. It started in my face and tongue, then moved to my chest (felt super weird) and then moved to my sides and stomach. It never went lower than that. Once chemo was done, I got my pump put on. That pump is so stinkin annoying! It's loud and inconvenient. Anyways, right before we left Erica brought me some potatoes, but I wasn't really hungry. They sounded and smelled delicious. We were on our way out so I didn't eat any right away. As we were walking out Erica says, are you feeling okay you look a little green. I said I feel so nauseous. So she grabbed the nurse and they gave me some zofran. It helped quite a bit. On the way home, I slowly ate the potatoes. When we got home I just tried to nap. My mom had to go run a few errands so it was just my sister Toree and I hangin home. Soon after my mom left (about an 1 1/2 hrs after we got home) I got super nauseous again. Erica told me a trick, to run cooler water over your hands. So I gave it a try. It seemed to work. But I couldn't stand very long, I was so tired. I sat there at the kitchen sink crying. I was so sick of being nauseous already. It started setting in. I couldn't believe this was happening again. This time I was crazy nauseous. Last time my neuropathy was what kicked in really bad. So this time it was a completely different feeling. I personally would take pain over being nauseous. I sat under the water for about 5 mins and felt better. I shut off the water and dried my hands off. As soon as I started walking away it hit hard. I booked it to the bathroom. And there I sat by the toilet barfing everything I ate that day. The remainder of the day went like this...throw up, drink as much water as possible, eat if at all possible (which wasn't much at all), take something for nausea, fall asleep for about an hour to 1 1/2 hours, wake up and do that all over again. I couldn't keep anything down. I have never been so sick in my life. I just wanted to sleep too, and I couldn't. It was hellish and awful and I hated every minute of it. The only time I got off the couch was to pee...which wasn't too often since my body would retain what it could and then I threw up the rest. I then took phenergan and lots of melatonin and Bran and I prayed I could sleep and not throw up anymore for the night. My prayers were answered. I slept pretty good. I remember waking up to pee during the night since my pump was still being infused. Bran was a champ. I was very weak and barely made it to the bathroom so he would help me up and sit at my feet and tell me how awesome I was and that I was gonna make it through (as I was puking...not peeing haha). He would rub my back until I fell asleep, he would jump up and grab puke bags, and help me drink my water and make sure I was getting my nausea meds down. He couldn't have been more awesome!
The next morning I had my PET scan in (friggen) Ogden at 9am. I was so scared I was going to be puking all night, all the way up, all over their tables and all the way home. I was so scared I was going to be so weak I wouldn't be able to even get up. But like I said our prayer was answered. I got sleep, woke up feeling very sick but never through up. My friend Sabrina drove me up there. I slept the whole way up. That was nice cause that's a long drive. Once I was there they gave me this huge cup of something that made me radio active (cue Imagine Dragons song now) and taste like crap. I drank what I could but I was nauseous and didn't want to throw the small amount I drank up. Once we were done, we headed home. Once again slept the whole way home. For the next 5-6 days I was on the couch. Only got up to pee. I didn't throw up hallelujah!!! But had the horrible feeling that I needed to. Whenever I got into a comfortable position on the couch and my stomach settled I didn't move. Any kind of movement made me wanna barf. The poor dogs just wanted to snuggle. And poor Bran didn't have a wife. I drank more than I ate. For some reason this time around I was craving frozen waffles. (Last time it was McDonalds cheeseburgers). Those waffles saved me! I had a few visitors but couldn't even get up, and I didn't even feel like talking...that even made me want to throw up. So miserable. I missed lots of phone calls due to this. I didn't really even feel like texting. I kinda ignored everyone for a week. I was just so sick and tired. Once I started feeling better I started texting back and eventually calling people. Just want to say thank you again to those that prayed for me, sent words of love and encouragement, those that called, texted, left fb messages and brought dinners over etc. They truly meant so much to Bran and I. I got my PET scan results back in, there is a spot on my left side but no mass. The Dr says he's not certain it's cancer. It could be something from surgery. So I'm pretty confused...do I have cancer or not! Im sure there is microscopic cancer in there. Once I got the results I knew what I needed to do. ...I have decided to stop chemo and try natural remedies. I have never been so sick in my life. I was already under weight going into chemo and I couldn't keep anything down and had a hard time eating. There was no way I could work 64 hours in two weeks. I don't see the quality of life when you're so sick. I was down for like 8-9 days then I wouldve gotten better for a few days and then do it again. I could keep going on and on about my reasons but I won't. I know some people will agree with this decision and some people won't. And that's okay. I have to do what's best for my body. It's scary to think that my cancer is aggressive and could start growing again. But I have faith that this is what I need to do. At this point, I am juicing everyday, eating organic and trying to find a Dr who will help me out. The problem is most of them don't take insurance...ew. Its hard to think I can't really eat out, eat my favorite sugary treats and just eat whatever I want. I know in the long run this is a better thing to be doing for my body but I'm gonna miss cupcakes. I'll be talking to a few people this week who were diagnosed and went the natural route, and hopefully get some answers about what to do. If you have any Dr recommendations please let me know. If you have any helpful tips about juicing, eating organic and growing wheat grass please let me know. I have a check up in 3 months...please direct your prayers that this route will be successful cause I REALLY don't want to do chemo EVER again. On the other hand, I'm feeling great! I have been eating great and taking my "cancer won't grow back" pills. Still not ready to go pump some iron at the gym but feeling MUCH better than I was.
To quote nacho libre "my life is good, real good"
Friday, October 4, 2013
Wow...well I honestly didn't think I'd ever be back on this blog. It took me a good 10 mins to figure out my log in and password.
So I've had a ton of questions about the news we received this week, and I wanted to post it for whoever to read...
While I was in the hospital recovering from my ovary removal surgery (on sept 19th), my surgeon came in, I believe it was the next day, (still a little high from the drugs) and said surgery went really well, I cut you open a little bigger (which was an under statement) than anticipated, just to get a really good look inside. He then continued to say how he couldn't decide where to cut me open. He said he was thinking of going in through my belly button to scope things out, but then decided not to...pretty sure someone was watching over me, because he said when he cut me open, if he had gone through my belly button, he would have cut right into my colon. Can you imagine?! I would've been in the hospital forever if he had! And not to mention all the problems to follow. I'm so so thankful our prayers we said before surgery about the Dr being on top of his game were answered. Anyway, so then he says, oh yeah there's no cancer! I'm thinking, sweet!!! This is the greatest news! I wasn't really too worried about it being cancer because nothing had shown up on the scans and I've been feeling great! Just this stupid ovary that decided to get as big as a tennis ball. But it was still calming to hear this. After he left, I called Brandon and told him what the Dr had said, and then he asks me, well was that just him saying there's no cancer, or is that from the pathology report? (He had told us before surgery it takes about a week to get results). I said, you know he didn't say, but I'll ask him tomorrow. So the next day when the Dr was making his rounds on me, I asked him if he knew it wasn't cancer because of the pathology report or because he didn't see any cancer when he was in surgery...he says, because I didn't see any. Oh okay sounds great, see ya tomorrow. I believed and trusted his word because what Dr would tell his patient it's not cancer if he's not certain right?! So I go home, start healing, preparing myself to go back to work on Oct 20th. We had a follow up appt with my surgeon on the 30th. While we were in his office, he explains that he and my new oncologist (since my other one just up and left to St George) had discussed for a long time, that this ovary that had just been removed WAS from my colon cancer. At some point it jumped over to the opposite side and was very aggressive. And let me just say, NO cancer patient wants to hear the word aggressive. It's terrifying. So I'm trying to take this in, and he continues to say that I'll need to get with my oncologist as soon as possible and start my scans every 3 months instead of 6 months. But then says, I'm guessing you won't have to do chemo again, It sounds like your oncologist doesn't want to. Needless to say, I left this appt feeling mostly good. Not the greatest news BUT I was convinced I wouldn't have to do chemo again. Because what Dr would tell there patients this unless he was certain right?! Brandon on the other hand left this appt feeling very sad and frustrated. He was convinced the cancer was back and I was gonna be doing chemo again. Long ride home that day. I made an appt with the oncologist that same day for Oct 2nd. Long story short, I'm doing chemo again. I cried, of course. So friggen frustrated and upset. After the Dr left the room we just sat there and cried for a minute. I kinda laughed...how ridiculous is this I said to Brandon? The scary part about this is, the oncologist said at this point, there's no end date to my chemo. WHAT!? I had to do 6 months 12 rounds last time and that was long enough. He said I could be doing chemo for yrs or even the rest of my life. That right there my friends was the WORST news I have ever received in my life.
So I start chemo on Wed the 9th. I go get my porta-cath put back in (arrghhhh) at 7am and once I'm done with that, I'll go straight upstairs and start my 1st round of chemo. Good news is, I'll probably be so tired from the anesthesia that I'll sleep through my 1st treatment. Bad news is, when i do wake up, I'll probably wish I never had.
Here are my chemogirlproblems, stresses, concerns or whatever you want to call them...I'm so scared I'm going to lose a ton of weight again and have a feeding tube put in this time. I'm already going into this chemo lighter than I was the 1st time. I'm trying to pack on all the weight I can but my body doesn't collect weight very well. I'm trying to eat as much protein as possible, drink as much protein as possible and eat as many sticks of butter as possible...jk :-) But seriously.
My biggest stress right now, is the fact that I have to work again through all of this. Well I did it before I can do it again right?...Well this time around, Brandon's a full time student and not working, I'm the only income for our family. Last time I was able to work JUST enough hours to cover the insurance taken out of my check. Which was probably 20-30 hours in two weeks. Because Brandon's not working, I have to work full time hours and because we're on a higher insurance tier this time, I can't go down to 20-30 hours in two weeks. This time around it's 64 hours in two weeks! That's super easy when you're not so sick and having chemo take up so many days in the week. I really truly don't know how in the world I'm going to do this. I have the determination to do this, but it's the physical strength I won't have, to work almost everyday I'm not at the clinic doing chemo. I just have to push through until the summer...Brandon graduates next summer and will hopefully get a job asap and he can carry the insurance :-) and I'll go down to part time again. I like this plan.
I'm trying to have faith and put my trust and self in His hands. I know He will make this happen, just not sure how.
So it's just like last time, I'll go into the clinic for about 3-4 hours and get infused, then go home on a pump, continuously being infused for 48 hours, then go back to the clinic to have my pump taken off, given a cell boosting shot (that costs $7000 a shot before insurance). This shot gives me the worst bone aches I've ever had. There's literally no way of describing the pain. I go home after getting the shot, shower, eat if I can and get all ready for sleep...because the only way of getting through the bone aches, is to take heavy pain meds and sleeping pills and knock myself completely out. Then I get better for the next week just to do it all again. ...while working of course. Ew.
I know I'm going through this awful trial for a reason. That reason is beyond me. I'm trying my best (again) to be happy and stay positive but I know I'll have my bad days, and I'll get super grumpy and sad. I'm asking those that pray for me, if you will be specific with your prayers...I need physical strength for work and I need to eat. Thank you!
It makes me super sad for the future too. I was planning on starting school in January at UVU to knock my generals out so I could start the Radiology Tech program up at Weber. Thats not happening now. I'm barely gonna have enough time to work. And the whole baby thing...won't even go there. The one thing that really pushes me through chemo is the possibility that I could finish up faster than the oncologist thinks and then make a baby quick. But once again it comes down to Heavenly Father having a plan for me. I just have to trust in Him.
You know, every time I try to grow my hair out, or have a surgery, the cancer comes back. I'm seeing a trend here.
I'll keep everyone updated just like last time. Keep smiling!
Monday, December 19, 2011
Brandon and I are so full of gratitude tonight! We're so very blessed and thankful for everyone's love, support, prayers, fastings and kind words! I can't believe this is for reals! Like I said before I got so used to being sick and going into treatments every two weeks. I'm so excited to move on with life and to have learned so much from this dang trial. I can't wait to serve others and be grateful for everyday! It stinks that it takes something as rough as cancer to realize life and what you have, big or small.
I go in, in 3 months to see my oncologist and 6 months for another scan! I just pray cancer don't show it's ugly face ever again!
Friday, December 16, 2011
Monday, December 5, 2011
YAY!!! I did it! I still can't believe I'm done. All I've known for the last six months is going into treatment every 2 weeks and being sick. I almost don't know what to do with myself! I just wish it was summer so I could go camping and fishing and just be outside...dang snow.
This pic was right after treatment headed home. I felt like crap. Atleast my mom was stoked!
During treatment, still feeling good at this point.
I finished treatment and all they gave me was this crappy bottle.
jk! I love this stuff and was excited to get it.
My mom was lucky enough to come for the last treatment and it was great! We played cards again...I lost this time :-(
I blame the neuropathy.
My neuropathy has been so bad for the last month. Some days I can't use my fingers. I use my palms. I look dumb, especially brushing my teeth :-) It feels like I've been rubbing my fingers across the carpet for a long time. It's so annoying. Lots of days I can't even feel my fingers, so when I type I mispell all the time and end up using one finger to type, when I pick things up I usually drop it cause I can't tell if I have a grip on it and (this is gross) can't tell if I've cleaned my nose out cause I can't feel anything on my finger...ew. I feel like I'm walking on rocks most days, can't feel the tips and sides of my toes and they're always cold.
I've had a pretty good appetite and it's just gonna get better! Every now and then I get gunk in my throat and feel nauseas. Can't wait for all of these side effects to go away!
I have my scan in two weeks!!! Dec. 19. I'm praying I don't have cancer anymore. I'm staying positive!
Thank you for all your love and support! We are so blessed!
I'll keep everyone updated on the results!
Saturday, November 19, 2011
I can't believe I have ONE treatment left!!! I honestly didn't think this day would come!
I went to treatment #11 alone this time. I just played on my phone, nothing too exciting. My mom will be in town for my last treatment...now that's exciting! We'll be playing cards just like my 1st treatment...and I'll beat her again :-)
Life is so good! I'm staying positive that my cancer has gone away! I have my CT scan on Dec. 19th. So I ask for more fasting and prayers for me/us. We're having a family fast on Dec. 18th...if anyone wants to join our fast (and become even more like family) please do so! I'm so ready to move on with my life! I'm ready to go back to work fulltime and enjoy my days again!
My neuropathy has been awful lately. I don't know if it's because it's getting out of my system or what, but it hurts just to type this post. I haven't been able to feel my toes in about a week, and they're always cold. Even if I soak them in warm water. I pray that goes away, it's very annoying.
I haven't really been too sick since the Dr. took my oxi away (the neuropathy med). I was nauseas the other night, but I think it was more acid than nauseas.
Thank you for everyone's love and support, we are truly blessed!
Life is great!