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Monday, November 28, 2011

We have SO much to be thankful for.....Happy Thanksgiving 2011

The last month has been filled with much joy and many tears. Becky is finished with chemo and on the road to recovery--YEAH. She has also started down the path to Genetic Testing. Yale New Haven Hospital has a special clinic which has approved Becky for genetic testing for the BRCA 1, BRCA 2 AND P53 gene mutation aka Li­Fraumeni. Becky and Matt will be getting the results in early December. Becky has chosen not to receive radiation which actually has been advised by the Genetic Clinic. If the P53 mutation is present then "Cancer patients... who survive the first neoplasm are prone to develop second cancers, particularly within the field of radiation therapy". The p53 gene mutation is suspected in families who have early onset breast cancer, childhood leukemia (Ava @ 2 1/2 yr) and adolescent sarcoma (Phil's birth sister- Karyn age 13 yr). Fortunately the testing has been approved by the insurance company.

After much prayer and with Becky's blessing I have returned to Florida to be with Phil. He has been at our house in Bradenton since October due to work requirements at the River Strand Golf and Country Club. Laura and I drove to Florida last week with our dogs Calvin and Stetson (cocker spaniel and yorkie). Leaving my family and home in Ct has always been difficult. When I walked into my bedroom in Florida and saw my robe and pajamas hanging where I had left them 6 months ago I remembered the pain I felt when Becky called to tell me about her "lump". I am so thankful that is now in the past and we can all get on with living. Arriving in sunny warm Florida was refreshing and soothing for the months of stress we have lived through. We had a wonderful Thanksgiving dinner with my sister and her family and my nephew and his family who live here.

Laura left yesterday for CT and left an ache in my heart for my daughters and grandchildren. As much as I miss my family the time Phil and I have is precious. I am so thankful for this special opportunity we have to be together. We have the best of both worlds and we embrace every moment.

Life is a gift and we all need to embrace every moment. We praise the Lord for His mercy and grace which lifts and carries us through all trials. Recently I heard someone ask where is God during the suffering. He is right there with us comforting and crying as we cry just as He did when His Son gave up His life for us. Give thanks!!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Almost DONE with CHEMO!!!!!!!

I know it's been forever since our last posting but life has been crazy. What a summer we have had. Izzi turned 7 in June, Blake is now 5 and Alex is 16- and ready to drive- HOLY COW!

Becky's cycles of treatment have been every 3 weeks without interruption. She has handled the nausea and fatigue by taking 3-4 hour naps everyday for the first week while taking Ativan, Compazine and Zofran around the clock. By day 10 her abdomen would swell up making her look like she were ready to deliver our 7th grandchild. We went to the ER twice without success. After some research by the nurses at Yale it was discovered that Becky had developed a condition called Lymphodemia of the Abdomen- a rare condition that occurs in women who have had the DIEP procedure before chemo. What that means in English is: by Becky choosing to have her mastectomy and then immediate reconstruction with her own tissue from her abdomen. The pathways of the lymph system were affected and every time she has her treatment the tissues in her belly become inflamed and swell. There wasn't much they could do for her - lots of CT scans and pain meds with hydration.

This past weekend (Halloween) was another new development for her. She started experiencing numbness with pins and needles in her feet and hands. She actually had fallen 3x in public. Fortunately she didn't hurt herself but she did laugh a lot. By Tuesday she had started swelling from her head to her toes - literally. So with the MOMMA(nurse) PUSH we were in the car heading back to Yale ER. Becky was very uncomfortable about being considered a complainer with the staff but I had to help her understand there are certain conditions and side effects that the staff needs to see - SO ON TO THE ER!!!! It was a trip well worth taking. She was given Lasix IV for the FLUID OVERLOAD and Neurotin for the Peripheral Neuropathy. By the next day she had a beautiful jaw line and normal neck.

So this Tuesday (Nov 8) we are on our way to Yale for her LAST treatment. So as I said before WHAT A SUMMER. You have all been so supportive to Becky. Our next journey will be with the Genetic Testing that started last week. I will be posting a comment on that journey soon.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

The post I put on Facebook last night......Just in case some of my non facebook friends needed a reminder its time to check those breast LOL

‎2 min begins brest awareness month..... WOW I cant believe I live this life! I am so thankful that I get to make a difference in others lives.. So here I go again PLEASE do your self exams Check yourself often, let no lump go unchecked! Also thank you to all friends that are walking the Breast cancer walk tomorrow. I am thankful for every bit of research that is found in the name of cancer. We can all only hope and pray for a cure!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

A great birthday!

Today was a great day and very busy night! All the kids had to be in different directions at the same time. Izzi basketball, Blake Flag football, and Alex a game. Thank you Laura S. and Amy for getting Blake and Izzi where they needed to be so I could go enjoy Alex's Game kid free:)
Today I am sitting at chemo enjoying my new hair my parents gave me for my birthday I love it:) Thank you to the best parents ever:)

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Saturday, September 24, 2011

Great News here!!!

My sister and I went up to Yale yesterday to get the great news that the tumor I found about 3 weeks ago was benign! Ahhhh what a great word! I had it removed a week before and waited and waited for the results. I knew in my heart that it really couldn't be cancer because after all I do go for Chemo....awful chemo!

I head back to chemo on Tuesday. Man I hate chemo and the way it makes me feel. I try really hard to keep myself postive but man I feel like this is starting to get the best of me. Im sick of having no hair. I'm tired of looking at the 15 scars that are between my chest and my lower belly and I'm really sick of having to go through chemo. Putting all that aside I keep on smiling and chugging through knowing that I'm halfway there.

I have decided on no radiation!!! Am I making the best choice......I think so but I'm a little nervous. I know that having the double masectomy decreased my chances of a reoccurance and I'm going for genetic testing to see if I have the gene for Ovarian cancer. If it is postive I'll be heading in for a hysterectomy. I'm really hoping that this is what is best for the long run.

Now for an entertaining story.....
My mom and I headed to the Yale ER last week. After every chemo, around day 10, I end up looking like I'm 8 months pregnant with the WORST pain. Finally, I ended up calling my doctor and he told me to head to the ER. I walked into the ER and it was a hot humid night. I had running pants on and a tight tanktop and yes I looked very pregnant! Lol! Not only did I get my normal looks of OMG that poor young mom has cancer.....I was getting the look of OMGGGGGG that poor lady is pregnant with cancer lol. Normally when my stomach is descended like that I will wear a shirt a little baggy so it's not as noticable, but I figured that place is always full of crazies so I'll fit in perfectly. They got me quickly into a private room and out of the way of that germy waiting room. I was waiting for the nurse to set me up with my WONDERFUL pain meds that take all this pain away. My mom and I could only laugg. The hall was lined with 3 beds. One was a man with a stab wound to his chest.... he was shackled to the bed with a guard standing by his side. The next bed had a man who must have gotton into an accident and was high on something. He was thrashing with a neck brace and he tried to go to the bathroom and escape all security was called! The next lady was an overdose who looked like she was trying to get the world to stop spinning. Every time a doctor would come in they would shut the door. I would quickly order my mom to open the door so I could see the drama in the ER. Man.... that place is entertainin! 12 hours and after many many laughs and great pain meds I was ready to go home. It was 2am and an intern came in and said she needed to do an ultrasound on my heart. I seem to have some fluid around it. My mother at this time was beyond tired and ready to jumped all over this girl because we already explained to her that we knew about the fluid and it was fine. Needless to say the intern doc still did the ultrasound and pushed so hard on my new breast tissue that she bruised it and a week later its still sore. What a night! That was funny to say the least and I hope this was the last time I have to visit that place. I do wish I had slipped my camera into my purse so I could show pics of all those crazy hall people!!!
Other then that things have been busy with the kids. We have high school football 6 days a week, flag football, soccer and baskeball and I'm enjoying spending time with the kids in their classrooms.







as always thank you all for your prayers they sure do pull me through!!!!!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Had a good weekend!

After chemo on last tuesday I expected a repeat of 3 weeks ago when I couldnt lift my head off the pillow for the week~ Thank you Lord that was not the case. I had the "best" post chemo weekend yet! I was able to watch Izzi play in her first season soccer game and even able to go to half a church service on Sunday. My energy came and went but over all soo much better then 2nd chemo! Tomorrow we head to Yale to have the tumor/mass removed from my armpit... Of course praying for the best, that it is cancer free. I still keep the same moto that God wouldnt give me more then I can handle so whatever this is Im sure I can handle it lol! Thank you in advance for the prayers as I head in tomorrow and I will keep everyone posted on what it is!

And thank you to my sweet Friend Dolores who came over and gave me a home Pedi which I needed so badly. My mom said no more salon Pedi until Im free from getting infections.....Taking a girls pedi away is never a good thing:) Thank you so much Dolores I know that being 7 months prego and giving your friend a pedi is not easy lol!!!

Friday, September 9, 2011

Kids are off to school Ive reached my halfway point and....Im looking for prayer for a new visitor in my arm!

What a week the kids finally went back to school. They were more then ready and had enough of the delays they wanted to be back at school with there friends! They all had a great day. Alex will be 16 in October and is in the 10th


Isabella is in 2nd grade this year and loves having her little brother Blake at school to show him around so cute!


Blake started kindergarden and is loving it he is with his best friend Quinn not sure how that'll work out hopefully they will behave themselves lol!

Once the kids were safe on the bus My mom Matt and I headed to Yale for another round of Chemo. This round marks my half way mark YAY!!! November cant get here fast enough! Today is Friday 4 days after chemo and all the fun that goes with it has started. The cold sweats complete fatige and the nausea has all kicked in to full swing.
This is my half way picture!

Today was another venture. I found a lump under my arm near my armpit. Amy and I headed to yale this afternoon to see what the surgen thought. She sent me up for an ultrasound. The ultrasound showed the mass that I found. Once it is removed we will then find out if it is cancer or not.
I will have it removed this Tuesday am September 13th at 8:30am. I am happy that she is being proactive and removing it quickly rather then waiting on it. I have high hopes that its just a lump with no cancer and if it is more cancer then it will just be added to my chemo treatment. I can handle all that comes my way:) Thank you for all your continued prayers.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

The Hair is gone.... and I am very bald!!!!



     So the time has come bald it is!  Day 12 after my first chemo came and the hair started thinning and as the days went by I stopped touching it to keep it as long as possible 5 days later it was time.  Half my hair feel out and what a mess it made I kept saying sorry to my in laws as my hair was everywhere.  Then after I got out of the shower I brushed my hair very gently only to have the brush fill up with my hair in just one brush.  I had a reverse Mohawk  and it wasn't a keeper!! Matt the kids and I were up in Maine with the Matts family having a great family vacation.  I looked at my sister in law Steph and said today's the day can you shave my head?  Her eyes quickly filled up with tears because we all know I LOVED my long hair and this was the moment I was most dreading. She agreed that it was time and after the town parade was over I went to Alex and told him that it was time just to give him a heads up and he said mom your hair is fine its just thinning.  I told him that I had lost most of it in the shower as soon as I took off my head scarf he agreed it was time.   I went into the bathroom by myself took one last look at myself with my hair or a half head of hair and just cried and cried and cried then walked out of the bathroom and said ok I'm ready...............  I love my bald head way more then the 8 million strands that were falling out every second.  I held on as long as possible but I am fine with the out come.  I thought for half a second about not posting my pictures of the hair buzzing but thought its a big part of my journey and I want to share this journey all of it so here they are:)

                         Thank you steph I know how hard this was for you! Love you girl!!!
And my Izzi girl was ready to help!!!




                                          The clippers did all they could now its time for the razor

                                    The tears for a moment!!!! This was an awe shit I really have cancer!!!
         We invited the kids to come watch only if they wanted to and they were all glued to it    they all  look pretty shocked but not one of them could walk away from the moment it was sweet!
                         This is me thinking ok its Just hair Becky get over it...itll be back before I know it!
                                                                 Razor time!!!!
                                       
                                                Steph and Matt hard at work!


                                       Tori Stacy and Aunty Sharron all there for support
The finished product Ive never seen anything so white in my life lol!

Family Vacation

What a great trip as always to Maine.  The kids had a blast tubbing and jet sking all over the lake no better time then being out side together as a family lots of great memories were made.  I loved nothing more then seeing my kids smile and hearing them laugh all week.  I have a whole differnt outlook on the things that I once took for granted.  You never know whats next in your life so taking in the childrens laughter is one of may favorite things.  I am so thankful for my life...I know its not all a breeze walk at the moment but I am thankful that I have a great family and my health will be back.

                                      Now thats what Im talking about I love that smile