This picture was me, eightish years ago. It was the beginning of my cancer journey. November 8th, 2006 was the day I was told I had stage 3 breast cancer. For many mornings following, I awoke each day followed by tears. I didn't know how to process it all. This was new, unfamiliar ground. Mastectomy, followed by chemo. I refused radiation. Biggest mistake I realize now, I did not follow through with the Estrogen Hormone therapy. If you are one now contemplating to take the drug, my advice would be, please take it. I don't think I would be where I am now, 2014 had I taken the therapy. Who knows.
Hair grows back. And let me say this, having no hair, I felt more woman than ever before. It's liberating! When my hair grew back, I had curls and loved them, thank you chemo.
As I stated above, I didn't know how to process all that was in front of me. But ya know, you go through the drill. No one really tells you what is ahead. Scans, needle after needle, more scans, chemo, more scans, you get the picture. It became so overwhelming. But you get through it and there is light at the end of the tunnel. The hardest part I remember is finally surrendering to healing. I just wanted to create in my studio. I didn't want anything to hold me back. But chemo did or my body did. I still remember the day I gave myself permission to let go and heal. It was a big deal. At the time I was living in the most beautiful place on earth, the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains in a very rural area. What an amazing place to release and allow God to feed me. I had to stop in my tracts and religuish all and who I was, just to heal and to receive.
So I heal, or at least what I believed to be true. Meanwhile my husband Ron, undergoes brain tumor surgery after surgery again with many complications. Doctors, hospitals, and more hospital visits, more than I can count. It drained me. It drained Ron. We loose everything, the beautiful home Ron built us. We move to Arizona because family, loving brother of Ron, Joe, and his wife Liz, insist we come to Arizona so they can look after us. We make the more. It's all in God's plan.
Complications here in Arizona with Ron, with his brain. He can no longer walk and becomes disable. All this time I am his caretaker. So much stress, oh my. But then we get relief. It's been a few years I believe that we have had relief of all the doctor hospital stuff. So appreciated it, honestly and truly. Calm is the best. The mundane is the best. But then there are battles within the battles of all of that. Won't go there on that, but trust me. More like, where did my husband go?
So lets now forward to today, October 31st 2014 stage 4 as of June 2013.
Honestly, I am in a place again of unfamiliar. Having a really hard time processing it all once again. My oncologist for the last year or so just sent me off each time as if I just had a cold. I had days where I couldn't walk and he just said it was something else. In my gut I knew I had to find a new doctor which I did. Being Breast Cancer Awareness month, I made myself make a brave move, and found a new Oncologist. Thank God I did. In just the last few weeks, so much was revealed to me that again I'm at that place of not knowing how to process it all. My new doctor sits me down and reveals a new blood test I had, never given to me before. She says, a 5 is really really bad. You are a 22. Okay, I sit there and think what does that mean. I'm speechless. She proceeds to tell me how bad the cancer has progressed into my bones and has become really aggressive, especially in my lower back and hips. It is in my femor bones, my ribs, etc. etc. Many places. Okay. Then I find out it's in my skull. Yikes. Is it in my brain too? Thankfully, it is not. That freaked me out more than anything.
Next step: Radiation!
I wish I could write all that I feel. Trying to. I am honestly sooooooooo sick of doctors, hospitals, needles, scans, tests, and really radiation??? Do I want to do this? I'm not sure. I have so many sweet and loving friends. Some conviced I will live to 100 and some already have me dead and burried.
HOW DO I PROCESS ALL OF THIS??? That's the battle I am having to be honest. So many say I'm so strong. Am I? I know when I am weak God is strong. If I didnt' have my Lord Jesus Christ I could not go on sanely, I know that. But I'm human, stuck in this body, with emotions. I don't know what I want to do. Do I go through the scans, the injections, the infussions, the radition or have I had enough? This is where I'm at. I feel if I don't, I'm letting so many down. But I have to do what is best for me, right??? I sort of feel done, and even over-done. I'm kind of weary, not so strong. It's not that I want to give up, but maybe. Done a lot with all the health stuff between me and Ron. I look at eternal life as glorious. Why wouldn't I let go and go there? Guess I want others to give me their permission to let me go. And yet there is a part of me that wants to fight. I'm conflicted. Please pray for me, for Ron and my beloved family and dearest friends. This is so hard. Wish it wasn't. So want to just paint. Maybe that's what I need to do.