Wednesday, September 26, 2012

A Familiar Road

Today Jess and I met with my oncologist. I had a PET scan done about a week ago and it showed more lymph nodes affected by the lymphoma. I heard the phrase "just one chain of lymph nodes on the right side" (of my chest), but past that I am unsure about size or exact location.

Bummer. (understatement...haha!) 

This means what he is suggesting is more chemo. 

I don't know why exactly (I have an idea), but I felt so well prepared for this news. I am not upset, sad, mad, confused...or anything like that. I just feel ready to do this and complete the task ahead of me. I know this road. I've been here before. It's not a nice journey, but I can find the beauty in the scenery along the way. Good and happiness are all around. Sometimes life just puts you in a situation where you  need to work a little harder to find it. Bring it on because I am as stubborn as they come and I welcome a challenge...just ask my patient, loving husband of 12 years! Hehehe! :~D Plus I know that I am never going to have to travel my road alone. I have my friends, family and my faith in Jesus Christ to comfort me.

A long, windy road. Glad I don't travel alone!

I do have to get another MRI of my brain to see the progress of the tumor in there. My radiation oncologist is hoping for the best and possibly only having to do 5 more sessions of the radiation. Radiation has to be done before we can move to chemo.

Well, that's all I've got for tonight. I have been sleeping better since I've been off the steroid, so I have been feeling much better. I'm going to enjoy it while it lasts!

Good night and may we all be blessed by God's wisdom and feel His love.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Get THIS Song Stuck in Your Head!

We just recently watched this movie as a family. Beautifully done.

When Joseph's trials seem to come to an unbearable peak, this is the song of his heart.

It has been stuck in my head for days and is serving as a blessing to my spirit. A great "theme" to be running through my head during tough times.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

The Brain is Beautiful

I found this picture of a brain and I just love it. It is alive, active, it is giving and receiving information, like it should. A beautiful picture.

I am big into using visualizations, so when I found this I knew how to exactly picture my healthy brain, as I want it to be! I use a few visualizations actually. Jess and I were finally able to SEE the growth in my head on Wednesday, and seeing it really helps me to visualize it shrinking with every treatment.

...on that note...
We knew there was a tumor in my brain. We knew it was big enough to cause problems...we even knew the approximate size in cm...but when you see the actual picture from inside of your head...having something in there that doesn't're never really prepared. It is never as small as you pictured or hoped. 

It was too big.

Of course I'm going to say that though. I want there to be nothing in there...well...good brain You know what I mean.

We are currently working on getting good images of the scan to put up and update our website...

...but in the meantime, picture this:

Place a 1x1x1 inch mass about at the intersection of where the red, green and blue colors meet in this digram. Central to the back of the brain. It isn't on the "edge" or outside. It is embedded pretty well into the healthy brain matter. No  real "short" route to get there for the radiation beam.

Fortunately (with that as crazy as it sounds) all I'm struggling with is vision loss and balance problems. Physical things. Not memory loss, personality changes, problems with names, faces, or other even tougher things lose.

So grateful for that too!


Here is what it looks like when I am on the table getting my brain back to normal (as "normal" as I ever was, lol) . Kind of creepy. Kind of barbaric looking too. 

But I look strangely at peace here too. 

Having your face secured down onto a table forces you to find an instant happy place to be. That's when I use my favorite healing visualizations. It is a power my mind has that I want to let have full reign.


"My brain is a beautiful, complicated machine that is going to heal and fully function one day soon. The mass is shrinking everyday. My progress is growing everyday."


Friday, September 7, 2012

"More Of Me To Love"

...more of me to love?!??
This was my radiation Dr's cute (and actually kind of funny) comment as he and I were discussing the weight gain and swelling in my face and body. Due to the steroid that I have to take until the tumor is under control, I am dealing with this very uncomfortable feeling. I hate it.

Being very fitness-minded since I was 13 years old, sometimes the mirror is a hard foe to face.

I guess I am more vain than I like to I'm a girl! ;)

I'm only comparing myself to myself of course. I know my body. I know how it should feel. Even post baby, when I've had extra weight to loose, my body NEVER felt like this.

I'm short, and have a small frame, so an extra 15-20 lbs (I hope not more...ahhh) is very noticeable.
I often feel like I have a layer (or two) of bubble wrap around me. I have actually lost muscle weird. I hate drugs...

So this is my venting post for today, BUT HERE IS MY POSITIVE SPIN...

Yes. I'm getting bigger and self-concious...but I'm ALIVE!

Yes, I've gained weight...but we are shrinking the tumor!

Yes, I may be wearing workout pants all the time...but I'm going to LOVE shopping when this is all over!

Yes, I struggle with it emotionally...but the beautiful thing is that Jess makes me feel no less beautiful. He is the glue that holds me together.

"More of me to love" is ok while we shrink the tumor.

I accept it and I embrace my life with gratitude everyday.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Such Early Mornings! My Spiritual Rise and Shine!

In waking up way too early (again) this morning I had to find myself something to do.

Yesterday I thought cleaning toilets and scrubbing floors was a good way to spend my early-morning energy... but this morning I sought out a spiritual message to set the tone for my day.

Yesterday it did work out quite well though!!! I cleaned in the quiet of a sleeping, peaceful house...then got to spend the rest of the day being able to focus on getting to doctor appointments, taking care of my kids and spending time with my family. Which made for a nice day! (Besides the fact that I got up at 3am!)

*sigh* Here is another early morning...might as well try to take advantage of the energy that I DO have when I have it comes!


So 3am rolls around again.  Awake probably because of my medication. There is much more cleaning to be done...but, no thanks. I decided to sit at my computer and go to

There is so, so much on that site that I knew that I'd find something to "speak to me" and provide the words of inspiration and encouragement that I needed. My "tank" needed to be filled...and guess what...

...I was right! (I love it when that happens!!!)

With a few "random" clicks, this talk from the last General Conference (of the LDS church) just fell out of the screen at me.

No matter your denomination, the spirit when you feel when you hear/read good men speak of Godly things is undeniable...and I really needed to hear this talk at this moment.

I've actually listened to it twice from minute 9:45 on...touched and softened my heart.

I blog about this because, in the future, I want my children to know who real strength comes from. I want them to know that I had faith and worked everyday to learn to trust in God. It is my hope that if I grow my faith, I will be a better example and give them that much of a "head start" in their search for their own faith that can help them endure the struggles that will come in their lives.

It feels like one of my most important jobs as a mother and it is my prayer that I can do so adequately.


Joshua 1:5 "...I will be with thee: I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee."

And now, I, Moroni, would speak somewhat concerning these things; I would show unto the world that faith is things which are hoped for and not seen; wherefore, dispute not because ye see not, for ye receive no witness until after the trial of your faith.
 For it was by faith that Christ showed himself unto our fathers, after he had risen from the dead; and he showed not himself unto them until after they had faith in him; wherefore, it must needs be that some had faith in him, for he showed himself not unto the world.
 8 But because of the faith of men He has shown himself unto the world, and glorified the name of the Father, and prepared a way that thereby others might be partakers of the heavenly gift, that they might hope for those things which they have not seen.
 Wherefore, ye may also have hope, and be partakers of the gift, if ye will but have faith.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Fundraising to Come Soon...I Hope!

I like this logo that my sister, Natalie, designed for me last year. I'm not too crazy about a shirt with my actual name on it (instead of an awareness ribbon or, something) but it was put together so beautifully, I really do like it!

The reason I bring it up again, is that we have some left over from the last you can figure out...medical expenses are once again getting out of control and hard to manage. In some cases we have already gone into collection. who wants to buy a t-shirt? :D ;)

Jess is also going to re-do our info/donation site so it is up to date.

Maybe this will help spread the word a little better about how much we could use a boost...

It is crazy how just a few dollars from a few people can start to help  out with bills and take huge,financial stress off of us. Parents know that it is already though paying for "normal" life with 4 active kids! Then we add all of my (what I call) "no fun debt", and it  just rains on our parade.

Anyways. Be on the lookout. For some new stuff. If you are comfortable with it, and find it appropriate, help us spread the word around by sharing the link we will have up and running soon.