Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Having Fun

Katelyn decided to help Jadyn learn to skate this weekend. Jadyn was a little nervous, so Katelyn took away most of the risk with head to toe padding! Jadyn crept along at a snails pace, but none of that mattered when you see her beaming smile--so proud of her accomplishment.

Bryn played her first soccer game Saturday! She has watched her sister Katelyn play for four years, and she has even practiced with Jadyn's team this past season. So, she was elated to begin her soccer career with the low-key 4 game season at our church's Rec league.

A little update on me: I saw Dr. Euhus yesterday. He was very pleased how my post-surgery has gone. I told him I was still experiencing some pain and he increased my pain patch; he actually doubled it. So far, I have not noticed much difference. Hopefully, I will soon. I asked his advise on my lymphodema and he convinced me that I did not need any treatment at this time. He took his own measurements and found no swelling at all. He attributed the tightening of my arm to a common post surgery symptom that will fade soon. I am willing to cut any appointments that are unnecessary! I completely trust Dr. Euhus, so I am very comfortable with this decision.

I have one more chemo Friday, followed by one week off! My Dad is coming into town from Oregon Friday as well. We have a busy weekend of soccer (for all three) volleyball (Katelyn) and a 4th birthday party (Bryn!).

This weekend, Jadyn and Bryn were playing on the couch--jumping rather. I wanted them to stop, so I had them get down and come over to me. I explained that there were so many other fun things to play with and offered some suggestions. I went out of the room and returned a few minutes later. They were both walking very slowly ON the couch. I told them again I did not want them playing on the couch! Jadyn said to me so calmly, "Mom, it's okay. We are not having ANY fun at all!" I wish I could have said--as long as you're not having any fun, jump away! If only we could use that excuse in real life!

Take care,

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Chemo part 2

I had a round of chemo today. I know I have said this, but I have three treatments on and one off. This was part two.

My grandmother came with me today! It was a fairly typical day of treatment. Before chemo, I always have a blood test and today my white blood count was a little low. It did not mean much for my scheduled chemo; I just have to go back to Dallas tomorrow for a blood cell boosting shot.

I then had an appointment with a lymphoedema physical therapist. It was more of a consultation. She measured my arm for swelling, and she actually found none. The only lymphoedema symptom is that I have tightening in my arm when I extend it in certain positions. The therapist staged me at the very beginning of stage I. This means for me that I will have four massage treatments with her, and then get fitted for a compression garment. I am supposed to wear it during the day. Realistically, I will probably wear it when I am home. I am having conflicting thoughts: I do not want lymphoedema to grow, and yet I also want to lead a normal, comfortable life. We'll see. I meet with my surgeon (Dr. Euhus) Monday morning for a four week follow-up to surgery and I will ask him his opinion. Regardless, next week, I will go forward with the treatments--who wouldn't pass up an insurance improved massage? The compression garment will be valuable for now, and when I need it periodically.

The rest of my day concluded with getting a speeding ticket on the way home on my very own street (37 in a 30) and I could see my house as he was issuing the ticket!! When I made the rest of the way home, I was greeted by a wonderful meal brought to us. It was so amazingly abundant and thoughtful that I was brought to tears. Of course, I had just received a ticket...

I am thankful that, right now, I am smiling. Here's to praying for more of those smiles tomorrow!

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Programs and awards...

Jadyn was selected to her Elementary’s "Hall of Fame". I don't know too much about it as we are new to Corey, but the teacher selects a student to be featured in the front hall of the school. Her picture is up, along with some nice words about Jadyn. She was all smiles when I took her picture today in front of her honor. We are proud her!

Last week, Bryn had a program at her school that was called "Get Moving!" Her P.E. teacher coordinated the event and each class had a song. Bryn's class danced with stuffed animals and had a great time. It was very fun to watch. Jadyn got to come too as the program was in the morning. Bryn loves seeing Jadyn come to her school. They will really love when they are in the same school--one more year!

No fun!

Just a quick update...

This week has been okay. It seems like one day I will be nauseous and the next day I am not, but my back will hurt. At least I have just had one problem to deal with at a time. God's provision shines through.

A funny thing that happened yesterday:
Jadyn and Bryn were playing and I was getting after them to stop jumping on the couch. I sat them down and told them there were many other fun things to play with, and to stop playing on the couch. I left the room and when I came back, both of them were walking very slowly on the cushions of the couch. I looked at them sternly, and Jadyn said, "It's okay Mommy, we're not having any fun at all!"

It is awfully hard to get mad at a cute comment like that!

Take care,

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Chemo started

I saw Dr. Hayley Friday and I started back on my same treatment: Abraxane (a chemo drug) and Avastin (an intravenous drug that attacks the blood stream, cutting off the blood supply of the tumors). I will have Abraxane for three weeks, and be off one week. This constitutes one "round". I will have Avastin every other week.

I was very clear with Dr. Hayley about all my aches and pains. She told me it was time to get a pain patch. It goes right on my skin and into my bloodstream. I keep it on for three days, and replace it. I put it on Friday afternoon and did not think about pain too much all that night and the rest of Saturday! Then, on Saturday night, I felt a sharp pain in my back that is still there now. It could be flair from treatment and the chemo attacking those tumors. I hope this is so! In the mean time, I am able to both have the patch and use pain meds. However the pain patch is working in every other spot--just not this pesky spot on my back.

I also mentioned to Dr. Hayley that my arm I had surgery on felt a little tight-- on my lower arm. She said that was a very common place for lymphoedema to start, but that physical therapy was effective in treating it at this point. I hope to hear from the physical therapist Monday as to a time to begin treatment.

My Aunt Diane, my cousin Mandy and her new precious baby boy, Jace all came with me to chemo Friday! I was feeling good, and it was great to have them along for the company and conversation. Neither of them had been to the doctor with me yet, so they got to soak in the whole experience.

I am so thankful that most of my pains are gone, please pray for this last back pain to diminish. There is also a woman from our church that began her first chemo Friday, our precious school counselor that had chemo last week, and another administrator in our district that is beginning treatment as well. Additionally, a friend is recovering from breast surgery and will start treatment very soon. I can't tell if I am just more aware of cancer now, or if it is that more people are diagnosed with it. Probably both, but we will all beat it--the sooner the better!

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Kindergarten coming soon

Yesterday I took Jadyn to Kindergarten Round-Up at Wood, where she will be going next year. It will be a seamless transition to Wood, as Katelyn will be leaving next year for Boles Jr. High. I will not have any missing years at Wood. It is bitter sweet though because I love having Katelyn at Wood, and Boles seems much further away (1 mile :). Katelyn will be so much more independent at Boles. For one thing, I am sure she will not be able to call me at the drop of a hat to come bring her shorts or her folder...or go into Aunt Sandy's office because she forgot to get something signed or she wants book fair money! The list could go on and on. Therefore, it is nice that we have Jadyn to follow right behind, with Bryn just the very next year.

Jadyn and I had a lovely time at dinner with some fellow moms and kiddos entering Wood. Then we went to the Round-up, which offered Jadyn a tour of the school and a chance to meet all the teachers. Then the teachers took the children into the classrooms while the amazing principal Aunt Sandy gave all the parents an introduction to kindergarten and Wood. Jadyn already thinks she knows most of the inner workings at Wood, and has the office staff wrapped around her finger. She would rather go visit Mrs. Donna in her office than hang around with me. I just hope she make it to class on time next year. Actually, Jadyn is very shy in new situations and told me many times how nervous she was. She did just fine with a little prodding. She makes friends easily and is nice to everyone, so I know she will do fine. She just stood (clung!) by me for a little while at first. When Aunt Sandy asked all the kindergarten girls to come stand by her, she went straight away. I don't know if that was because she was ready...or if that was because she knew she was heading straight for her aunt!

I am still on my countdown to Friday and chemo, however, I had a good night's sleep last night and feel okay this morning. I have changed nothing, so I only attribute it to more fervent prayer by others and myself.

Jadyn saw ducks outside our house yesterday and thought we should take a picture. There is a large man made pond a few blocks from our house, so I'm sure they were trying to make it there.

Here are two pictures from Wood last night. They are of Jadyn and Sandy and Jadyn and myself. We could be anywhere, but just know we were at the Round Up! I guess I should have taken pictures of Jadyn with her friends, or her teachers, or of the classroom. I'll remember that for the first day of school.

Sunday, April 8, 2007

Happy Easter

I hope you are having a fabulous Easter. Our family just got back from church and had a wonderful time of worship. We are now headed over to my grandmother's house where many of my family will gather for a late Easter lunch. I do love spending time with my family.

Friday, we decorated Easter eggs with some friends and family. They come up with "new" decorating kits each year using almost exactly the same supplies, generating almost identical eggs as the old kits. If you decorate eggs each year, you know what I am talking about! We all had a lot of fun!

My hip and back pain has been pretty constant lately. I had a hard night and morning. Jake mentioned trying to see a pain management doctor and I think that is a good idea. Especially if it takes some time for the chemo to get working!

I did, however, have a precious morning with the girls, waking up Easter morning to a living room filled with eggs and Easter baskets filled to the brim with toys, candy and trinkets (as well as the traditional new tooth brush). They all had fun looking for eggs. Their favorite each year is when they find an egg on the living room fan and have to turn on the fan to get the egg to fly off. Bryn said that the Easter bunny must jump high.

We also each Easter try to coordinate outfits as a family. This year we were navy and white. We hope you have a blessed Easter.

Monday, April 2, 2007


I am going to update my pictures with you all first. Other details to come later.

Jake took all three girls to Six Flags over Spring Break. They went first thing in the morning and came home just before it down poured and a huge storm swept through the city. They had a lot of fun. I let Katelyn take my camera and she had fun being the group photographer.

Right before spring break, we had open house at Wood and Corey Elementary for Katelyn and Jadyn respectively. We enjoyed seeing all they had been working on lately. We got to meet Jadyn's best friend Tamon.

Katelyn has had two cotillion dances in the last two weeks. This marks the last of the dances for this year. She has had a great time. She loves to dress up and go out afterwards, I don't know about the actual lessons!

My arm is feeling so much better. I have pretty good mobility and the tingling sensation is almost gone. However, I have significant bone pain in my hip. It makes it very hard to walk. Medicine helps, but I have never been more eager to begin chemo! I have my first treatment on Friday the 13th. This will not be a scary day for me, but I will be greatly anticipating the chemo drugs attacking this bone cancer, wiping it out for good!

Thank you for your thoughts and prayers.