- Peace for Shawn and I, for Kyle and Miranda and Braden and Connor, for our parents and siblings and nieces and nephews and inner circle friends watching and hurting as we go through this
- that God would keep soft our children's hearts toward Him through all the emotions of this hard journey
- strength and stamina; physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually
- that the cancer shrinks to gone, gone, gone!
- gentle side effects to this second round of chemo
- family unity, harmony, love, strength, joy, happiness
- anything else you feel God puts on your heart

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Goodbye 2013

New Year's Eve.

Farewell 2013.
I wanted to be angry with you.  I wanted to kick you to the curb.  But the reality is that when I think on this past year all I see is notes and cards and gift cards and blankets and scarves and gift baskets and prayers and kindnesses and silver linings.  We have been so very, very blessed.

Happy New Year's, friends!

Welcome 2014 and all of the blessings that you will bring!   

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas, to your family from ours!

Praying that you will feel loved, that peace will descend over your day like snowflakes on eyelashes, and that there will be joy in your heart.  Thank you for blessing our family so incredibly all this long year.  We are so grateful.  As I wait for my family to rise up and celebrate Jesus this morning I have had time by the light of the Christmas tree to give thanks to God for the many blessings that He has overflown into our lives this year.  My heart is full.  Merry Christmas, my friends, thank you for being a blessing to us.  May your holiday season be heart-filling and smile-making and great-memory-making!!
Merry Christmas, with love.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Hospital and pain plan

Headed home with a pain plan.  Cancer  and no kidney complicate things.  I opted  out of IV narcotics.  I chose to go home and have Christmas with my kids. 

Had a good twenty minutes rest in the room.  Could feel your prayers melting that pain away and God granting me some rest.  Thank you.

May your Christmas be bright!!!!


Excruciating lower back pain. Might have I go to hospital.  Can't cope.  Took big meds.  I want Christmas.  Devastated.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

When wishes come true it's like 
eating fruit from the tree of life.
~Proverbs 13:12

Came across this verse yesterday when I was reading a children's Christmas story.  
I hadn't read this verse before, I like it.  It's pretty.

SO ANGRY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I finally feel not chemo-sick. 
I finally feel a clear head.
I want to spend time with the kids.  They are on school holiday now. 
Shawn is home.





I'm sorry.  I'm just.  Needing.  God.  I don't know what else to do.  Please pray that the back stuff will just release itself and stop.

Saturday, December 21, 2013


Big kids are at a sleepover.  Hubby and I enjoyed our coffee/tea while we watched the boys build a snow hill and race with the new sled.  Such a good and relaxed morning.  Just as Saturday should be!  I'm feeling quite good today.  The chemo side effects have mostly left this building!  Yay! Back is fairly stiff but hoping that by getting out and wandering a little through town I can work that out.  Feeling smile-y today.

Last night was M's birthday party and I was so happy to get to attend this year!!! It was amazing to watch our girl interact with her friends! I loved meeting each new girl in her life (new school this year) and I am always thrilled to see friends from forever, too!  What a great group God has provided and Miranda has surrounded herself with, I loved the singing and dancing and silliness.  My heart was just so content to witness the evening!  Huge thanks to Mom and Nicky for wrangling girls, taking photos and serving up the pizza and cake.  

Hope your day is great!!!  MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Thing I miss...

Sitting at the table for dinner with my family.  

My hearts says yes, my stomach and gag reflex says no.  

The little adjustments of the last year are accumulating and I'm sort f just bummed.  I can hardly even read fac e boo k because I'm just plain missing doing the things you all are doing. Don't feel sorry for me but please, really stop and look at the people around you and say, "wow, I am truly blessed."

Epsom Salt with a view

Was advised to soak in Epsom salts to help alleviate chemo pain.  Until someone in this house develops super strength and could lift me out of the tub I'm too afraid that I'm too weak to get out of the tub myself... But then it came to me: foot bath.  Better than none, right?!?

The boys are, all three, playing w Lego advent pieces and I am glad to be upright and in the same room to watch their interactions.  Was feeling left behind this last week.  Trusting that this is the climb-back-up. Hoping, really hoping.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013


So sleepy today.  This body is rebuilding all the healthy cells that chemo wiped out.  It's exhausting to lay here all day... someone pass me a bonbon?!

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Chemo Round #3: cycle 1, day 6

Pain in my hips, lower back, right outside hip, upper middle back, right bicep, headache and a little lightheaded, lots of gagging, can't cough because of port pain, and rib pain.  So tired but can't get a good sleep because my body won't relax.  Head is more clear today, body is hyper-sensitive. Any aches that would normally see chiropractor are just flaring and angry at me.  Not allowed yo go to chiro.  I'm not good with pain.  I am a wimp and I can't speak half the time  because the air being forced through my lungs comes out like a ghostly moan. And can turn to gagging which hurts my stomach and diaphragm. 
Helping M with ideas for her ugly sweater for school tomorrow.  C was home sick today fever broke in the night but didn't want to risk the class and thought he should rest it out.  Glad to interact with the kids.   Glad Shawn could stay home with me today.  I am horrible and grumpy but I need him.

So tired.  This is when thoughts and images of the physical act of dying crowd my thoughts.  About the kids.  About my death bed.  About my family and dearest friends. It's a lot to wrestle with when I am just so physically depleted and drained and done.  So tired.  Help, Lord. All I can ask is help.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Chemo sick

I forgot.  Chemo sucks.  Was struggling  with pain and seized muscles and nausea this weekend. Telling myself I'm  on the upswing today...easier to believe if I don't let even an extra minute pass unmedicated.  Blah.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Chemo Round #3: cycle 1, day 3

Body aches.  Pain.  Nausea.  This feels like chemo.  I'm going to assume that means its working.  Boo. Yay.  Got meds on board, let's have some relief now.

Got out to see the Christmas parade with Shawn and kids, that was fun! I was struggling with feeling super nauseous and hip pain in my right side but we saw Santa and the huge tree and it snowed (foam) which was fun!

Loving the love!

Check out the awesome ' chemo mitten' covers that my friend Leanna made!  She  figured I wouldn't hate the gloves as much if they were prettier... and she was right, but it wasn't just the pretty purple it was the love and thoughtfulness and time she took to quilt these that really made it better!!!!!  I am so blessed!!!!  Thank you!
Aren't they beautiful?!  The lady in the chemo chair across from me thought so, too!  I think she was thinking to get some mitten covers of her own!  You may have started a trend, Leanna!  

Friday, December 13, 2013

Flu is in the house.

Dear Lord, I am choosing to not panic.  My counts are good and the chemo dip that makes me very susceptible shouldn't be for a few days yet.  But, Lord, Kyle has come home with some big flu symtoms.  Please strengthen his immune system to fight off this bug.  Restore him to perfect health.  Protect the rest of us.  Heal our bodies, make us strong, put Your hedge of protection around us all  and keep any more germs away.  In Jesus' name, amen.

CeeLo Green - "Mary Did You Know" [The Bible Clip]

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Chemo Round/Type #3: Cycle 1, Day 1 accomplished

We did it! 
On to the new chemo.
Seriously, ten minutes.  I didn't even have time to barely eat my two cookies from the nice Volunteer, close my eyes cuz the super-speed-buzz from my supporting meds was finally wearing off, and then my IV pump was beeping to send me home!  Seriously, felt like Mom and I were sneaking away as we left.  So strange.  But, different chemos are suspended (mixed) differently, and this one doesn't need to be mixed with a huge bag of anything else.  Ten minutes.  Still shaking my head.  The crash from my super-speed-buzz hit somewhere on Hwy 1 as we headed home and I slept hard for a short while, we stopped to shop real quick along the way, and then home we are.  Going to have dinner, might have a little shut-eye if I dare risk it at this point (5:30) and then early bedtime.

Shawn is feeling under the weather.  Please, please pray that this doesn't turn into full-on sickness.  I need him well.  And I need none of us to get sick.  He has been carrying too big of a load and his body is starting to demand some rest.  Dear Lord, we pray your strength and healing to Shawn's immune system.  Please raise his body up to fight the cold that is trying to drag him down.  Protect the rest of us from his symptoms and germs, especially my system especially right now.  Heal Shawn, help him to get the rest he needs at night, Lord.  Help his body be, and stay, strong.  In Your Holy Name we pray.  Thank you.  Amen.

More new hairs.  I've decided that having more hairs to choose from is actually less stressful.  This makes it just silly fun rather than trying to replace what was lost.  So thankful for the Cancer Agency Wig Room for the first wig,  one of the local Women's Pray Groups that has been faithfully praying for me who has donated the second wig, a dear friend who has shared a third wig, and now another friend and Cancer Victor who has shared this fourth wig!  I guess I may be becoming a hair hoarder?  Ah well, it's kinda fun... though a little creepy to see hairs laying around the living room, apparently I need a storage plan for these beauties! 

Chemo Round 3: Week 1, Day 1

Headed to Vancouver Cancer Agency for my new chemo.  As I was laying awake last night (been awake since 3am, yay spazzy meds!) and praising God and just chilling out in my bed an image came to mind: you know the mouthwash commercial where the bright teal blue wash swooshes in amongst the teeth and washes the tartar away... that image of this chemo swooshing in and washing the cancer cells out of my body.  I wasn't sad or worried or fretting but just thanking God for today's chemo.  And that image has come to me again and again this morning and gives me hope. Let's be hopeful together, shall we!!!

YOU are the 'reason for the season'

YOU are the reason for the Season! 

"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life (John 3:16).

Kristin's response:

Mind. Blown.  I have always loved the phrase "Jesus is the Reason for the Season" but didn't realize that that phrase is really just our Christian heart's response to a commercialized world view on the seasonal celebration of Christ's birth.  I had never thought of it before as ME being the reason for the season.  I am.  I fully believe that God so loved the world (ME) that He gave His only Son (Jesus Christ) so that whoever believes in Him (me, you, every and anyone who says "Jesus, I have sinned, please forgive me, please come into my life, help me live according to the character of you) will have eternal life (in Heaven with God when this earthly body dies).  I fully believe this.  And so the idea that KRISTIN is the reason for the season.  And SHAWN is the reason for the season.  And KYLE is the reason for the season.  And MIRANDA is the reason for the season.  And BRADEN is the reason for the season. And CONNOR is the reason for the season.  ... well, it's just so amazing and cool and mind-blowing!  YOU, my friend, if only just YOU, YOU ARE THE REASON FOR THE SEASON!!!!  God made Christmas happen... Christ's birth happen... just for YOU!!!!   WOW!!!!

I can't wait to share discussion with the kids about this at some point over the next few days when we can sit and chat and really just let this information sink in!   Don't you love it when God's love just smacks you right in the head like a v 8 commercial?!?!  Seriously, why didn't I think of it this way before?  So glad to have this perspective shift now!!!  Love when God uses F ac e B ook to knock my socks off!  Thanks, God.  You are so awesome!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Allowing anticipation in

Writing birthday invites for Miranda's classmates.  This time last year I honestly didn't know if I would get another birthday with the kids. I wouldn't even allow myself to think about this year's birthdays until the day before.  It even feels like I am "tempting fate" to think "I got another birthday with each of them" when her birthday is still over a week away... but I feel hopeful that I will get this birthday with my daughter.  Please realize what a big deal this is to me.  I don't look ahead.  I have grown to assume that there will be side tracks and blips and dips and side effects that will come between this moment and my plans for even the very near future. It's that loss of innocence that I have spoken of before.  But today, as I write these cards, I feel anticipation of spending 12th birthday time with my girl.  And anticipation is a rare commodity to me these days, for whatever reason and for a whole bunch of reasons. Once bit, twice shy, right?

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Advent Fun with Connor

We are notorious for falling behind on our Advent Calendar fun. This is me trying to help Connor get caught up on his building. These kids have become so used to doing things on their own but I am trying hard to be present and in their space and conversing with them as much as I can without smothering... I have this constant panic that they will forget me, will forget the fun mommy, the adventurous mommy, the not-always-yelling-from-the-couch mommy. It's a fine line! [smile]. I am blessed that these kids are pretty gracious and will take the mommy moments when and as they come.

Monday, December 9, 2013


Having trouble with some aches and some really tough nausea and bad gagging.  Gagging is not high in frequency but if I lean back in a chair it's so bad, overwhelming.  When I get up from laying the coughing is so bad, stomach sort of convulses or spasms.  I no like it.   Listening to my littlest boys shovelling snow for an hour on our little back deck makes me smile because I hear their happy work and know they are happy.  M is doing homework so she and I can watch the Voice tonight. Thankful for the anti-nausea meds I got last week. Feeling exhausted from the effort f the gagging and trying not to cough (because it makes me queasy and starts the gagging).  But the kids are so cute in the backyard even in the dark!  Oh how I love them!!!


It is gorgeous out this morning. A true "winter wonderland"! I took the camera with us to the bus and snapped some photos of the boys and I enjoying this rare treat! The snowflakes are the perfect, dry, fall-singularly and accumulating-on-the-road kind. Ours is most often a very wet and mushy kind of snowfall. I am loving this morning and am mesmerized by this miracle of temperature and air pressure and moisture. The roof across the street is completely covered even!!! O, the boys should have worn boots today! [chuckle] We are always doubtful that it will last. That's kind of what I am dealing with emotionally these days, will my body last? I don't want to die. But I do want to live in the will of God. But how do I trust God's will and also ask Him to please spare me from cancer. I know that I am in His plan, and while I do not at all think that God gives cancer or disease, I do think that what the Devil intends for evil God does use for good. And so much good has come from this cancer year we have been on. We are surrounded with love and care and miracles and mercies and grace and kindnesses at every turn. So would I want to have missed out on the blessings that this year has been? Um, heck ya! Cancer sucks mega! And, no. I wouldn't change it ...but I would like to be healed now.
I think that I have confused myself in trying so hard to not make demands of God that I have actually been making demands in a "back handed" sort of way. By working so hard to not try to force my own will, I have actually been sort of passive aggressive in how I come to Him. I can't articulate it... but I think my thinking and fretting about offending God has actually caused a fog to fall over my understanding of who God really is. He is omnipotent, He is the creator of all things, He is kind and just and He is love.
Our Pastor, a man I greatly respect, left us with a thought yesterday about waiting on the Lord. Pastor Jim said this: while we are waiting on the Lord (to answer our prayers), let us focus on the character of God. And that got me thinking. First, I was astounded that I was so lost in my understanding of my God that I couldn't quickly name several characteristics. I am a word girl, where were the words? Second, I resolved to put some study time in. Third, I am choosing to work on shifting my focus back to the benevolence and kindness and wants-to-hear-my-heart's-cries of God. I don't ever want to limit God because I have made Him too delicate to handle my mess, or too fragile, or simply because I'm thinking too hard on not offending him. Just spit it out, girl! Hello, He is God!!! I like this quote: "God is only as big as my imagination.". Why would I choose to let my over thinking create limits on the limitless power and awesomeness of the God I believe and love and trust? That makes no sense, Kristin. Stop that. Okay. I will.

God's Character
by Joyce Meyer
It’s important to know God’s character. Why? It gives us discernment. If we don’t know the character of God, how can we ever know who is from God and who is not from God?
The Bible says don’t believe everything that comes down the pike. You have to test and try the spirits. We need to know what is God and what is not God. And we need to recognize God in our daily activity.
Let’s look at three important traits of God’s character.

1. Justice

Out of all the aspects of God’s wonderful character, the one I personally enjoy studying the most is justice. God is a God of justice. That word justice is so awesome because it means that He will always make anything that’s wrong right. For example, if somebody mistreats me, I don’t have to worry about it because God is going to bring justice. He loves justice.
Dave told me one time that God showed him during his morning prayer time that nobody can really cheat you if you keep your faith in God. If somebody takes something from you, don’t sweat it. Even if God has to work it out through a hundred people to get it all the way back around to you, you will get it back.
“ Nobody can mistreat you and get by with it if you have your faith in God. ”
One way or the other, what was unjustly taken from you will come back to you. Nobody can mistreat you and get by with it if you have your faith in God. 

2. Goodness

God is good—this fact never changes. And He’s good all the time—not just once in awhile or when things go your way. Psalm 34:8 says, Taste and see that the LORD is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in him (NIV).
Let me tell you something: When you are having personal trouble and all hell seems to be coming against you, one of the best things you can do is speak this out loud, “God is good. God is good. I may be having trouble, but it is not God’s fault. God is good.”

3. Holiness

God is holy. What does that mean? In the Greek, to be holy is to be righteous—or to be right. You know I think it would make our lives a whole lot easier if we would realize that God is always righteous.
To be honest, realizing that whatever He does is right whether I like it or not has helped me in my walk with God.
He’s always right. Whether it feels good to me or not, it’s right. And whether or not I agree with it, He’s right.

God’s Amazing Character Is Our Example

These three traits are not the only characteristics of God, but they are three significant and powerful ones. With the help of the Holy Spirit, each of us can incorporate these traits in our own personality.
I encourage you to spend some time looking up these three traits in the Bible and studying the magnificent character of Christ.  Find a good concordance or use an online Bible search engine and discover what the Word says about justice, goodness and holiness. Then study these three traits for the next thirty days, begin to practice them in your daily life, and see what God does…You won’t be disappointed.

This article is taken from Joyce's 10-part CD series, The Character of God.

[Above photo] My two littlests scraping together enough snow to throw at each other... these two are two years apart in age (+ 1 week) and have really begun to get rough-and-tumble and boy-ish in how they play.  Oi!  Just look away, Momma, just look away!  [huge proud smile]

Sunday, December 8, 2013

GAH! He coughed in my mouth!!!!

Trying to not have a full-on panic attack.  Beloved youngest son just coughed directly into my nose and mouth as I was inhaling.  Direct hit.  His cough and cold into my air intake.  I want to scrape my mouth.  I want to gargle with industrial strength tooth cleanser.  I am honestly trying hard not to have a full-on panic attack.  I will not get sick.  I will not get sick.  It's just a cough.  My numbers are high.  I will not get sick.

The new chemo that I will start on Thursday makes your neutrophils (they make your white blood cells which are the infection fighters) drop.  This means that, starting Thursday, we will be putting an even bigger sign on our front door and we will be disinfectant wiping even more in this house and I will be wearing a mask when I cuddle with the kids. 

In my mouth.  Gah!  Direct hit!!!  In my mouth.   Gah!!!!

I will not panic.  I will not panic.  I will not panic. 

I'm feeling slightly panicked.

Lord, I pray your hedge of protection around this body extra in this minute.  Peace for my soul, Father God, germ-free for this body.  In the name of Jesus, amen.

Friday, December 6, 2013

And God did provide!!!

I called the Cancer Agency pharmacy and was told there is a total shortage of B12 shots.  I must have it today or I cannot have chemo next week.  Crucial!!!  The kind pharmacist suggested I start calling every pharmacy in town and then to call my oncologist if I had no success.  Then she suggested calling my doctor's office... which I did.  And, after explaining the urgency of getting the shot this morning, the lovely receptionist put me on hold, walked over to the nurse, and came back to say, "We have one vial left, when can you get here?"  I called Mom and we were there within 25 minutes!  The nurse was so sweet and the shot didn't hurt (I'm so just ugh about needles, I'm sick of them and I'm strong to get through it without whining but I still hate it down deep in my very core) and ta da!  I'm good to go. 

Next we picked up the other med (folic acid) I need to take today in order to get chemo next week... and there was a mix up at the pharmacy and some rigamorole and I came home without it.  Gr.  Yet another trip for my mom.  So dumb.  So I dug through my cupboard and found my vitamin box and took a 7 years old folic acid from being pregnant with C and popped that to get some on board.  Self-medicating with folic acid, well, there's far worse things... I should be cheery today for all the Bs, right?  [eye roll]

And now, sitting on my couch, hot pad on my shoulder/back to try and ease up this stupid cancer-shoulder pain... I think it's the super cold weather we are having.  It's sunny and clear and -6 today... that's super cold for our town!  So, cozied in I am.  Gonna sip tea and doze my day away and have a visit with a dear friend whom I haven't seen in far too long (thank goodness for texting, right M?).

Today is a good day.  I needed B12 and God provided when there was none to be found.

God is good, all the time.

Even when I am snapping at the kids and testy and tired and bitchy and grumpy and gross and just unenjoyable to be around (which happens a fair bit, sorry to say).  But I feel a lightness for having switched off the chemo+trial.  I just wasn't able to settle into it, and I usually can.  I'm sad, I'm scared, I'm worried that God's plan for my life and my plan for my life won't be the same.  And mostly, I am jealous that if I die I won't be here to enjoy life with my husband, my kids, my family, my friends, you all.  Jealous.  That is my deepest, darkest emotion about dying.  I fear that the actual dying/death part will be painful or gross (coughing and gagging and choking and stuff is my biggest physical gross-out) and that I won't be able to be me and that everyone will be emotionally wrecked from watching me go through it.  But for me, mostly I feel jealous of what I would be missing as you all go on / through your days.

So I just keep trusting in God's plan for my life.  I hold tightly to the promises of Heaven.  I hold loosely to the very minimal planning I allow in our days (for there always seems to be a blip).  I cherish my children but work hard to hold my hand open, to not clutch too tight, just in case I die.  It's a constant shifting of emotions and coping and energy level and mental and emotional exhaustion.  And then some moments, it's not and everything is pretty normal... the new tired-Kristin/weak-Kristin normal, but still... smiles and laughing and silly and hounding the kids to do chores.

It is what it is.  There's a ramble for you.

Thank you, God, for providing the B12.  It never occurred to me that you wouldn't, but I'm glad you did all the same.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

CT Results

Over the last week I have head my mind say, "I need a break, I just need a break." And in the next instant I panicked because I knew something was about to shift.

Yesterday, things shifted.  And I get my break.  Not what I had in mind.

As Shawn and I were given the results of my recent CT scan I felt calm and I felt a little shake-my- head / incredulous/ "serious God???" crazy-giggle burble inside me... God, you heard my heart's cry for a break and here it is.  That tiniest giggle lasted about a millisecond of surprise and was tinged with a moment of [heart sinking in chest].  It wasn't great news.

The CT showed that the current chemo + trial drug have not worked as hoped.  My oncologist has presented us with his top three options for treatment (option #1 chemo, option #2 chemo, option #3 a different trial).  We trust him.  I have prayed, and am praying fervently in this day, for God to give my doctor wisdom, to thank God for my doctor's excellence and experience and knowledge and expertise, and I ask God to give my doctor clear direction in my treatment plan.  Also, the #1 option requires that my oncologist apply to the government to please fund the treatment. (This is a treatment used as standard in other cancers and it is used for bladder cancer but is not a "standard" treatment protocol for bladder cancer and so not covered...because bladder cancer is rare and not many people get it (praise God!) it is not worth it financially for drug companies to pay the millions of dollars it costs to complete a trial.  Lots of people get lung cancer, so there is money in lung cancer drugs, so drug companies fund research in lung cancer... ah, money does make the world go 'round).  Hoops to jump through and pray through.

My oncologist used the word "option" several times and the phrase "several options" and "I felt that you would like to have options" and he was spot on.  I have often commented, throughout my adult life, that I like to "keep my options open".  My oncologist knowing me so well after only 3 or 4 visits was just exactly the confirmation I needed that this is the right guy for the job, and added to my peace.

I also like that my oncologist isn't waiting around to see if it works.  He sees that the current plan isn't the right plan and so we're moving to something else.  I like that he is proactive.  I like that he is researching.  I like that he has a plan B he is keeping in his back pocket.  I like the way he thinks and acts on my behalf.  That is awesome!  "...because you are young and fit..."  The "fit" cracks me up, "Um, doc, you do know that I've been laying around on my butt for the better part of a year now, hey?"  But 'healthy' isn't a word we use with cancer and hospital visits I suppose.  It makes me chuckle every time he says it!  Bad news and a chuckle in the same visit... this is such a roller coaster.

Shawn was caught off guard, "But you haven't gotten worse, how is this possible?"   My poor, so-very-dear-to-me husband, this poor guy, this stalwart supporter.  Please, keep holding him in your prayers.  I can't imagine how impossible it is for him to watch his beloved wife go through this and this and more and then some more.  His heart is broken for me.  He just wants to make it better.  He prays so fervently.  He hopes so hard.  He works so diligently.  He tries more and harder and deeper than anyone I know.  He is a good good good man.  He really is.  Hold him in you heart with me?  Lord, bless Shawn's day.  Please, Lord, bless Shawn's day.  I love that man truly, madly, deeply.  Thank you, Lord, for Shawn.  He is such a good man.

And so, I get a break until next week.   Last night, after the crappy job of telling my parents and sisters the update, I actually had a lightness of heart that I haven't had in weeks.  I knew, in my gut, that the current chemo+trial was not going to be the winner for me.  And so, being taken off of it just feels right.  I have hope in the next treatment.  I trust the Lord God, maker of Heaven and Earth: He has a plan and I am in it.  Ultimately, if nothing works, I will have perfect peace and rest and health in Heaven and I will one day see my loved ones there. A scary and peace-giving thought all at the same time... no one wants to die at 41 with an adoring family and a great life they are happy to be living!!! I do not want to die.  At all.  Until I am 100 and enjoyed my 100th birthday cake and a good nap in my chair and then will die peacefully in my sleep.

But I am not dying today.  Nope.  Today I am going shopping.  Christmas is coming!

UPDATE:  Thursday the phone call came that I have been approved for option #1!!!  We prayed that God would clearly open the door (of which option) would be His choice and that door flung open.  My oncologist had warned us that the government could say no and that we could be denied the chemo based on budget.  The trial nurse seemed pretty happy that we got approval so quickly. 

Please pray that the cancer in my lungs will stop. shrink. be gone completely.  Please pray that the 'possibly something' on my liver is gone completely.  Please continue to pray for my bladder health.

We also really strongly need your prayers for coping and peace and joy in this Christmas season and smiles and happy moments with our kids and some normal.  Please, God, bring us normal in each day.

And please, be very careful with what you say about any of this in front of your kids, so that we can continue to protect our kids as best we can and as is age appropriate within our family values and as to what/how Shawn and I share information with the kids.   This is just such an insane reality and we are all worn and weary and stretched thin emotionally and just plain done about cancer.   Please pray that God will keep soft their hearts.

Thank you for your continued support.  I have tears right now just thinking of your pray-ers, and the anonymous gifts that show up at our door, and the meals and the groceries at exactly the right time.  We are so blessed and you are just amazing and I just don't know how we could maintain any sanity without God and without the tangible help that you bring.  My heart is full.  And sick and tired of having cancer and completely ready to celebrate a miracle.  All at the same time.  [weak smile]

The last two days have been very busy and full with no naps.  Today I am very weary and yet have to go traipse around town in search of a B12 shot (apparently there is a shortage and no pharmacy has any???) that I must have today or else I cannot have chemo next week.   Ah, another blip in the journey.  Going to phone the Cancer Agency pharmacy and see what they've got.  God will provide.

Thank you for loving us in all this messiness.  I am so grateful.  Today I'm just also really really tired.

My daily prayer: Help me to stay sweet!

God is working on your problem. And what you need to do in the meantime is stay calm, stay sweet, stay out of fear, and 
keep on keepin' on. 
~ Joyce Meyer

To this I say, "Amen! Amen! Amen! Amen! Amen! Amen! Amen! Amen!!!"

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Clinic Day

Cycle 3 starts tomorrow.  Chemo + Trial Drug.
Today is clinic (doctor and nurse) plus blood work.
Feeling blah about going to yet another medical appointment.
It's all I do.
This is full-time work with no paycheck, no schedule, no breaks, no camaraderie of peers.
Struggling to have joy. 
Our Christmas Tree is beautiful and makes me smile but I just feel sort of empty.
I have trained myself so strongly to live in the moment, anything else is too risky to think on and worry gets me nowhere, that I don't know how to look forward to things anymore.
It's all just appointments on the calendar.
That's not how I have purposed to live my life.
Not having success in figuring out this.
I don't think I'm depressed.
I'm just blah.
I'm tired of meds and hospital visits and blood work and needles and giving my history and answering the million questions to every doctor and nurse I see.  I will have been to a hospital 7 times/days in 11 days by the time tomorrow finishes up.  Would have been 8 times in 12 days but I postponed my Friday appointment.
I want to talk about Christmas presents and spring break and holidays and fun stuff.  But I don't really want to talk about much of anything.  Blah.
This chemo/trial drug (no idea which one) have made me quick to cry, testy and short-tempered.
Feeling claustrophobic.
I just want to feel joy and the thrill of something good.  For more than just the moment.
I want good feelings that linger.  I want to bask in the glow of a happy heart.
I am grateful.  I am thankful.  I am in awe of the kindnesses you keep pouring out on us. 
I guess that counts.  I'm not a total automaton if I can feel thankful.  That's good.
I'm sick of having cancer and would like to be healed now.

They that wait on the Lord shall renew their strength, they will mount up on wings as eagles.  I have hope.  That's really the most important.

I haven't posted much lately because 'if you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all' and all the posts I write in my head just sound like sadness or whining.  I don't spend all day sad.  I hope I don't spend all day whining.  I'm just feeling lost and alone and trapped I guess.  It'll pass. 

Monday, December 2, 2013

Thank you, nice juicy donor!

Back at the hospital.
Woke up feeling panicked ... More like claustrophobic.   Spent time with God, had some fear moments, laid them down.  I trust you Lord.
Took cupcakes to C's class, his birthday request.  Enjoyed SNOW for the drive!
Got here, port accessed but wouldn't draw. Apparently I am either too low on blood or dehydrated.  The nurse was able to get the port to work and I got my bag of blood flowing in now!
Did you know that blood flows by gravity while other meds can be moved along with a pump?  True.
The nurse raised the pole (to help gravity along) so we can get this transfusion done in time for me to be home when birthday boy gets off the bus!  Nurses are awesome!!!
My temp was up a titch, please pray no problems with today's transfusion!!!!

Update:  Mom and I pulled onto my street literally four car lengths in front of the boys' bus!  How's the for awesome timing on the part of my great nurse who was determined to get me home for C's birthday!!!   It's been snowing off and on all day today, nothing sticking quite yet but was beautiful to watch the snowfall from my hospital bed!  Had no further temperature problems and no glitches with the rest of the transfusion.  We always watch for the next 6 hours for a reaction so I'm praying for none.  Tonight, we are celebrating my #4 as he turns 7years old!!!!