Sunday, November 25, 2012

Blessed Beyond Measure!!

I was lying in bed just now trying to take a nap, but tears came to my eyes and I started to think instead of how truly blessed my family and I have been over the past month.  I have so many thoughts going through my head right now that I want to share, but it is kind of a jumbled mess.  I know if I wait, I will lose a lot of what I am wanting to write down for myself to remember.  This time of year is such an amazing time of thankfulness anyways, but this year it has held a whole new meaning for me.  We have truly been blessed beyond measure!!  
I had my surgery on Tuesday of this week, and am happy to say, that everything went well.  The morning of the surgery was a rather amazing time for me.  I know that sounds weird to say, but I have never felt more calm and at peace than I did in those hours before surgery as Tyler and I waited in the hospital room.  I fully expected to feel nervous, panic, impatience, scared, etc., but I did not feel any of those things.  It was as if the Savior had his arms around me the entire time protecting me from all of those things.  I truly felt the effects of all of your prayers on my behalf and I can not tell you how grateful I am for them.  When the Dr. came in and said it was time and Tyler and I said our good byes, I did have to fight a little bit to keep it together, but still knew I was in good hands and was going to be OK.  Once I was in the operating room, I had a moment when the anesthesiologist was getting me hooked up when a nurse came and put her arms around me and just help my hand.  I shed a few tears, a little bit of fear mixed in with the love I was feeling and then I was asleep.  I remember waking up with some nurses around me and then I woke up again in a different room with Tyler by my side.  I can not tell you enough how grateful I am to have a man like him by my side.  Heavenly Father sure knew what he was doing when he picked him for me.  He is the most amazing man I have ever known and has not left my side during any of this.  He is the most unselfish man I know and would do anything in his power to make his family happy.  He has taken such good care of me that I almost feel guilty for being sick.  I hope someday that I can give back to him what he has given to me. 
We came home from the hospital that evening to my amazing mother in law who came to help out with the kids.  She has been such great help to us.  She took the kids with her on Wednesday up to Tyler's sister Heidi's and kept them up there with her until Saturday, so I could get some good rest and recovery time in.  Thank you so much to Heidi and McKay for opening your home to my children and putting up with them for the past week.  I am so grateful to you guys and all your help.
I am happy to say that I am finally feeling so much better since surgery.  I have two different incisions,  one from taking the lump out and one from taking out some lymph nodes.  I was a little surprised by the size of the incisions, they are a lot bigger than I expected.  It is pretty sore and tender, but the big thing that has kept me down is feeling light headed and nauseous.  I was not prepared for that, but I am told it is from the anesthetics.  Yesterday was the first day I didn't have to spend the better part of the day in bed and was actually able to get up and be productive.  I can't tell you how good it feels to have a clear head again.  I now wait for a few weeks and continue to recover before we start radiation.  I have to admit, that when I was first diagnosed with cancer, the thought came to me, oooh maybe something in all of this will make me lose some weight.  Pretty sad thought that I was excited for the possibility of cancer to help me lose weight I know, but I thought it.  I mention this because when I went in for my appointment with the oncologist on Monday he told me that indeed I wouldn't need to have any chemo, but I would have to take a medicine called tamoxifen for the next five years, which drastically reduces the risk of ever getting breast cancer again, but the side effects from it are hot flashes and weight GAIN.  Come on, seriously!!  Really though I am so grateful for the diagnosis I got and that I don't have to go through chemo which might make me lose some weight.  I will just have to fight that much harder for that which I really want.  It will only be that much sweeter.  I am hoping in one year from now I will be able to say, that in the past two years I have lost 160lbs, and kicked breast cancers butt.  What an amazing day that will be!!
I have learned through this experience how spiritual it can be to be in the position to receive service.  It is so much easier to give than to receive as we all know.  It has been amazing to me though to see the different kinds of service that has poured in from so many different places, from people from all different points in our life.  People we see on a daily basis to people from our past we haven't spoken to in years to people that we don't even know that we had no idea even knew or cared what was going on in our life.  It is just amazing to me to know that I am loved enough for people to stop what they are doing in their own busy life and step to help out in mine for a minute.  I will never be able to say thank you enough to all of you that have truly blessed me and my family.   With that being said, I want to find a way to pay it forward, and there couldn't be a better time of year to do that than right now during the holidays.  I have something in mind that I would like to do, but I need to work out the details of it first before I share it with all of you, so please watch out for it.
I hope this Holiday Season you all spend a little extra time with your families and grow closer together than you already are.  I encourage you to look for the many blessings you have been given and give thanks for it every day.  
I love you all!!

Friday, November 16, 2012


So the last couple of weeks have been some of the craziest of my life.  I wanted to take a minute though and give all of you and update on where things stand with my breast cancer.  First though I want to thank each and every one of you for you kind words and prayers that have been said on my behalf.  I have definitely felt the love from all of you.  So the first big thing that has happened it that I was accepted to medicaid.   I can not tell you what a huge relief it is to know that everything will be taken care of.  I have no idea how we would have made it work other wise.  Tyler and I sat around and talked about how we would file for bankruptcy and move to Montana and live in my parents basement.  I wouldn't mind living close to my parents, but I am glad we don't have to file bankruptcy to make that happen.  Other things that have happened is a million phone calls and Dr. appt. scheduling.  I am SOO grateful for the amazing people that have been helping me with all of this stuff.  It has been so overwhelming even with their help, that I do not know what I would do if I didn't have them to guide me through the process and help me get to where I need to go.  
The first Dr. appt. I had was with the surgeon.  We just met him and kind of talked about the route we want to take and what my options are.  Since we caught it so early, I have opted to just do a lumpectomy instead of a full mastectomy.  My surgery is scheduled for Tuesday November 20th. Yesterday I went and met with the radiologist, who just kind of explained all of that to me and what to expect.  He will give me a 3-4 week recovery period after surgery and then I will start radiation therapy.  I will have to do that for 6 weeks, 5 days a week.  That is going to be a long process, but we will do whatever we can to get through this.  
Today I go in for an MRI so they can get a closer look at the rest of my breast tissue and make sure there are no other smaller lumps hiding in there.  If on the off chance there are a lot of other lumps in there, we will then have to go the mastectomy route.  I am really hoping that is not the case.
On Monday I go in to see the oncologist.  I am not exactly sure what he will be doing yet, but I have heard that I will have to take medicine after this is all said and done to keep the cancer from returning.  The oncologist is the one that will work with me on that.  After the oncologist I go back to the surgeon for a pre-op appointment and get all the details set for surgery the following morning.
It has been a crazy roller coaster ride of emotions, but I am just glad to be getting going on things so we can get over this hurdle.
As far as the whole weight loss goes, I have been TERRIBLE!!  I have totally been using food as a comfort and numbing tool lately and it has not been good at all.  I really do not want to waste all the hard work I have put into this journey thus far.  I hope I can just come to grips with things and stop the emotionally eating soon.  On that note, I will close, because I need to go and pull out the chocolate chip pumpkin bread I have cooking right now. Ha!
I will update again when I know more.  Thanks again so much to all of you for all you have done for me and my family.  We all really truly appreciate all you do.  We have the best friends and family.  Love you all!!