My Inspiration

My Inspiration

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Just a Note

I'm in the hospital at least one more day. Thank you for your kind  thoughts.

I just wanted to let you know that because of the medicine that I'm taking, I can't have visitors.

Friday, January 24, 2014

It's the Little Things

So I'm in the hospital.

The vomiting took it's toll and I had an abdominal blockage, so they admitted me on Wednesday.

I am finally feeling better today, but I think I still have a ways to go before I can really say that I'm actually better.

My potassium levels have been extremely low. The day I checked in my potassium level was a -2, and since you shouldn't be below a 4, they got to work making things right. I was having severe cramping and I was dehydrated. Several attempts later, they finally got a CT scan of the blockage.

In order to take care of the blockage or and Ellis they inserted a tube down my nose (well, they actually used 3 different tubes before they got one to work) and used suction to break up the blockage. It looks like they got most of it, and my bowels are finally working again.  Tubes up your nose is top on my ten ting a ever to do

It's amazing how exciting it can be to use the bathroom.

Sorry for the ugly details. It is what it is, and unfortunately, it really has been ugly.

It's been the craziest week, with lots of  really bad weather. There has been snow and negative temperatures and lots and lots of snow days. The kids have been home, luckily Aunt Kristal has been here to keep them entertained. We are grateful that she could come. She went home on Thursday.

I for sure will be in the hospital until tomorrow, but maybe even until Sunday. My white blood count is low. With all the tubes they had down my nose, my nostrils are raw and I have bled and bled. I think I ended up changing my nightgown at least 8 times. The bleeding has stopped and hopefully will stay stopped.

The big thing now is that I have to keep walking to avoid blood clots, and take it easy to avoid throwing up.

I'm feeling a little out of it today and time passes so slowly here. But, i'm glad to be feeling better. a little bit of the good news area, during the CT scan they were able to see the lymphoma and it's shrinking. It's just a little victory, but we will take it.

Thank you for your texts and prayers and kind thoughts. We are moving forward.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Random events,and eliminates for the week

Met with the Doctor Moore last week to get a stronger drug for the nausea and vomiting.
He prescribed a lovely little concoction of Zofran, Ativan, and Lorazepam.

We had a few problems getting the insurance to cover the high dose and three month prescription due to the price, but Keith was able to negotiate one month.  Happy to have it and it seems to be helping.

That being said,  we've had the stomach flu going through our house for about a week, so I've done my share of the throwing up.

Just last night we had Garrett and Kendall up all night.  Poor Keith truly wants to just throw away the bathroom mats and buy again rather than salvage those suckers.  Hoping that this bug is soon to leave our house.

The medicine I'm taking makes me a little loopy, so I have made some pretty nuckeye moves.

Many burnt meals.

I have numb fingers and toes, so I keep dropping and bumping into things.  Its called Neropathy.  I've found that a heating pad or gloves helps.

It was a rainy Tuesday so I went to pick up the kids from the bus stop.  Miss judged my turning radius and put the front our minivan in the ditch in front of our house.  Then tried to get out by myself.  back - forth - back - forth. BAD

Sweet neighbors tried to help but AAA was needed.

Funny thing about my hair falling out, is that they hair that didn't fall out, still grows!  So I was looking a little shaggy.  I decided to give myself a buzz cut with a 1 and 2 guard.  Odd feeling as a women to give yourself a high and tight cut.

That being said I have also lost all the hair everywhere else on my body.  And I mean everywhere!

I am feeling better and able to get a few things ready for Kendall's birthday and baptism.

So grateful for great friends that watch my kids, clean up there vomit, clean my house, drive me around, check on me, pray for me and love me.  

Thursday, January 16, 2014

That I Might Not Shrink.

These past few days I have felt a nervous and a little fearful - doubting my strengthen to handle all the sickness.  I was maybe even a little bitter that we have to be going through all of this right now.  We have a busy life -we have small kids with a lot of needs, we're away from family,  it's the winter funk, there's seasonal sicknesses and we have a general desire to be doing anything else but this.  

 Then I thought about an CES article that my father sent me by Elder David Bednar, called "That we might not shrink..."   His bishop had given it to him and it had really helped him better accept and understand why I have to go through this trial. 

Last night as I reread this article and it gave me peace and understanding.  Now I hope for faith and strength as the outcome of round 4 of my chemotherapy unfolds over the next week or so.  The following are some quotes from this article that helped me.  

Earlier in that same year, Elder Maxwell underwent 46 days and nights of debilitating chemotherapy for leukemia. Shortly after completing his treatments and being released from the hospital, he spoke briefly in the April General Conference of the Church. His rehabilitation and continued therapy progressed positively through the spring and summer months, but Elder Maxwell’s physical strength and stamina were nonetheless limited when he traveled to Rexburg. After greeting Elder and Sister Maxwell at the airport, Susan and I (Elder David Bednar) drove them to our home for rest and a light lunch before the devotional.During the course of our conversations that day, I asked Elder Maxwell what lessons he had learned through his illness. I will remember always the precise and penetrating answer he gave. '"Dave," he said, 'I have learned that not shrinking is more important than surviving." 
His response to my inquiry was a principle with which he had gained extensive personal experience during his chemotherapy. As Elder Maxwell and his wife were driving to the hospital in January of 1997, on the day he was scheduled to begin his first round of treatment, they pulled into the parking lot and paused for a private moment together. Elder Maxwell "breathed a deep sigh and looked at [his wife]. He reached for her hand and said … , ‘I just don’t want to shrink’” (Bruce C. Hafen, A Disciple’s Life: The Biography of Neal A. Maxwell [2002], 16).In his October 1997 General Conference message, entitled “Apply the Atoning Blood of Christ,” Elder Maxwell taught with great authenticity: “As we confront our own … trials and tribulations, we too can plead with the Father, just as Jesus did, that we ‘might not … shrink’—meaning to retreat or to recoil (D&C 19:18). Not shrinking is much more important than surviving! Moreover, partaking of a bitter cup without becoming bitter is likewise part of the emulation of Jesus” (Ensign, Nov. 1997, 22). 
Elder Maxwell’s answer to my question caused me to reflect on the teachings of Elder Orson F. Whitney, who also served as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles: “No pain that we suffer, no trial that we experience is wasted. It ministers to our education, to the development of such qualities as patience, faith, fortitude and humility. All that we suffer and all that we endure, especially when we endure patiently, builds up our characters, purifies our hearts, expands our souls, and makes us more tender and charitable, more worthy to be called the children of God … and it is through sorrow and suffering, toil and tribulation, that we gain the education that we come here to acquire” (quoted in Spencer W. Kimball,Faith Precedes the Miracle [1972], 98)."
Elder Bednar also points out that we do not know the meaning of all things, but we must learn to say "Not My Will but Thine Be Done". To continue to quote Elder Bednar:
"We recognized a principle that applies to every devoted disciple: strong faith in the Savior is submissively accepting of His will and timing in our lives—even if the outcome is not what we hoped for or wanted. Certainly,. But more importantly, they would be “willing to submit to all things which the Lord seeth fit to inflict upon [them], even as a child doth submit to his father” (Mosiah 3:19). Indeed, they would be willing to “offer [their] whole souls as an offering unto him” (Omni 1:26) and humbly pray, “Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done” (Luke 22:42)."
I want to grow in His will for me and find joy and closeness to Him through this process.  I want this experience be make me a bettter, mom, wife, sister, daughter, friend and servant to those around me.  

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Happy New Years!

Once they checked me into the hospital, I immediately started feeling better.
The wonders of fluids through an iv when you are dehydrated.  Sweet nactor!

Then they gave me medicines for the nausea and headaches straight into my iv.  Relief!

I felt vastly improved with in one hour of being at the hospital.  But the doctor decided to keep me over night for testing because my oxygen count and blood pressure were low.  My blood count was low too but not so low for a chemo patient or in need of a blood strains fusion.  We chemo patients are a sad lot.    I also couldn't pass two of the test they wanted me to do . Don't know what that was all about.

Anyhow, it was midnight on New Years Eve so I kissed my eternal sweetheart, Keith Jones and sent me home to relieve our good friends that came to help be there for the kids while they slept.  They didn't even know I left the house.

As I lay in the ER room, I though about twelve years ago this night,  I set Keith up on a blind date with a friend for New Years Eve Dance.  We ended up talking and dancing and laughing much of that New Years Eve together. (Sorry other blind dates)  Carefree and with no idea what the next twelve years would hold for us as a couple.  As bad as this New Years Eve was, I can't complain about other 5000+ days we'll spent between.  We are blessed!

After he left ,they ran a few more test, x-rays, and ct scan on me before admitting me into the oncology department of the hospital.  Can't complain here too.  Private rooms and they let me sleep in until 10:00 am

Wednesday morning they gave me a few more bags of fluid, and stronger anti nausea medicine and sent me home to rest.

Thursday I went into the cancer center for more fluids

Friday, I started to throw up AGAIN.  So Keith called the on call Doctor who called in an even stronger anti nausea medicine.  Finally something that has worked.

Today is Tuesday and I feel like I'm coming back to the land of the living.  Just in time to do this again next Thursday.   CRAZY!

Angels Among Us

Round 3
Normally the infusion of the chemotherapy is a rather easy experience.

My sweet nurse Kathy hooks up my medaport, brings in a box of liquid poison bags, we repeat my name and dates, and she sends them dripping into my body.

Then I kick back and watch a movie, read a book or stair out the window realizing the fate that will soon be mine over the weekend..

Unfortunately this time I decided finish addressing Christmas card.  Not my best idea!
I think the leaning over made my stomach upset which caused some incredible heart burn.

I went home to sleep it off and was a little better the next day, but then I had to go in for the dreaded Neulasta shot.

That somehow is good for my be I always get deathly sick with in three hours of the shot.

To boot it like getting a big fat peanut butter shot in the fatty back part of your arm.  As explained to me by Jen Walker.  

Nothing about this round was like the other two. The normal diarrhea didn't start but in turn I got heart burn that started in my abdominal area and shot up through my chest like a flame that burned all the way up my throat.  I felt like smokestack!

 This was NOTHING like any heart burn I had ever experienced with pregnancy.

 I was popping Zantac and nausea medicines like candy with not relief.  Tried white bread, small glass of milk, water, nothing helped.

Saturday afternoon is when the real fun began.

 Wrecking Vomiting.  Which  then turned into the chills, then sweat, and  the shacks, until you start the whole process over again.     And again....    And again..

Mixed in the with mess my good old friend diarrhea, and passing out.  I was a complete MESS!

Finally after about three or four hours of this game my body gave out in to sleep.

Leaving my sweet husband to clean up the mess. Put the kids to bed and somehow get some sleep me self before church the next morning.

Thank Heavens for my sweet friend Jen who flew in for a few days of this train wreck.  She fixed the meals, played with kids, did the laundry, and keep some normality going.

Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday all pretty much went the same.

I'd feel a little better in the morning, eat and drink a little, tired and felling yucky by the afternoon.  And vomiting by 4:00 pm

Tuesday night after throwing up for about three hours, I realized there was nothing left in me.

My head was light and air.  I was having  a hard time communicating to Keith my needs.  I was really heavy breathing.  I had passed out on the toilet and then again on the floor.  It was too much.

I asked Keith to give me a blessing.

I don't remember much of the blessing, but I remembered thinking this.

Keith is worthy to hold the Priesthood.

The blessings he is say is from the Lord to me right now in this situation.

All blessing giving are based on the faith of the one receiving the blessing.

Heavenly Father wants me to feel better.

Neither Keith nor I  can't help myself anymore right now here.  I need others to help me.

At the end of the blessing I asked Keith to call 911.

This is were it all goes a little blurry for me but according to Keith

The EMT wrapped me in something that looked like a huge taco laced up at the top to carry me down the stairs.  Somewhere in the middle of being carried down stairs I passed out.  Next I was told they put on a gurney, rolled across my yard half naked , put me up in the ambulance, and we began to cruising down Prince William Highway on our way to Prince William Hospital.

 The next thing I remember was as amazing lady, an EMT yelling "Stop trying to get that vein, She's dehydrated"  And thanks heavens, he had already poked me three time on that side.  Another guy went on the other side and took a little time and was able to get some fluids in me.

This sweet amazing angel EMT could tell that I was freezing, so she wrapped me tight in blanket and held me while I cried for Keith.  I'll never forget this kind act.

She said. "Did your husband give you a blessing tonight?"


"Then everything is going to be okay!""

How did she know?  I don't care.  This kind act and gently word spoke such peace to my soul.  And comforted me when I was in great need of comfort.

She continued to talk to me about my cancer and chemo.  She was very knowledge and tender.  
She stayed with me until they got me settle in the ER and Keith arrived.  Somehow, she knew I needed her for my first ever Ambulance ride.

There are angels among us!