Monday, December 22, 2008

When we remember those we've lost...

I "borrowed" this poem from the journal of a woman I met in chemo. I've talked about her in earlier post's, she lost her battle with Ovarian Cancer last April at the age of 39. She left behind a husband and two young boy's. I always look forward to their updates, as it's comforting to know that even with the loss of their loved one, they are doing well. Timing is everything as my mood, thoughts, and emotions have been all over the place. This poem has given me a sense of peace, I hope it does the same for you...

Merry Christmas From Heaven

I still hear the songs
I still see the lights
I still feel your love
On cold wintry nights
I still share your hopes
And all of your cares
I’ll even remind you
To please say your prayers
I just want to tell you
You still make me proud
You stand head and shoulders
Above all the crowd
Keep trying each moment
To stay in his grace
I came here before you
To help set your place
You don’t have to be
Perfect all of the time
He forgives you the slip
If you continue the climb
To my family and friends
Please be thankful today
I’m still close beside you
In a new special way
I love you all dearly
Now don’t shed a tear
Cause I’m spending my
Christmas with Jesus this year

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Is Ovarian Cancer Stealing Your Thunder?

It's been a while since I've posted. I've started a few post's, only to stop halfway through. I've been having a problem least I think that's what the problem is.

Maybe it's that I feel like I haven't had any new revelations or profound thoughts to share.

Maybe I'm tired of hearing the sound of my voice cheer leading and championing for the greater good of Ovarian Cancer.

I'm not sure.

I just know that the moment I sit down to write, I become extremely anxious and fidgety.

I'm annoyed easily and quickly frustrated.

I'm forcing myself to complete this post, as I don't ever want to lose what I've started here. As I start to become more of old myself and resume life as planned, I may be tempted to forget about my mission and slip into an heavenly abyss of what I perceive to be a normal life.

Is it that I only feel like writing when things are going bad?

Do I feel guilty writing when things are going well for me, but not for my friends who share my battle?

Again, I'm not sure...

Don't get me wrong, I'm so grateful and happy that I'm feeling well, I'm kicking cancer's butt, and that I'm able to enjoy the holiday season stress free. I'm having a great time, enjoying each and every moment.

And trying really hard not to let Ovarian Cancer steal my thunder!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Can a marriage survive cancer?

If your one of my wonderfully loyal and faithful readers then you already know a little bit about my life BC(Before Cancer). If you're new here and a soon to be loyal and faithful reader, I'll get you up to speed...

I was diagnosed with Ovarian Cancer three weeks before my first wedding anniversary. Not quite the anniversary present I was looking for, but at least I was here to celebrate...this totally rocked our world. All that we knew to be true, we now questioned and how to navigate this new part of our journey would soon reveal itself.

I know a lot of people say that they couldn't have made it through the storm without the support of their significant other. I'm pretty sure I would have made it through, but it wouldn't have been the same. My husband is my biggest fan!! He supports me, but he won't pacify me. Translation~he won't let me fall down the black hole of self pity and despair. I'll admit at times I've uttered a few choice words to him(under my breath of course), but in the back of my mind I knew that he was right. I knew that I was capable of much more than what Ovarian Cancer was trying to dictate. Yes, my parents and friends are an amazing support system...but I can still get away with murder especially when it comes to my dad:) And for parent's, I think it's incredibly hard to watch your child go through a life threatening disease. Children aren't suppose to live this earth before their parent's and when that happens at any age it's so hard to come back from that. So I did my part by remaining upbeat and optimistic when talking to the folks,wanting to spare them as much grief as possible.

Because of this, my husband was privy to all things cancer, be it good, bad, or indifferent. That's hard to process, let alone live with. I always knew we would make it, because I know who we are at our core and as my husband says "nothing is bigger then us". What I've come to realize now that I've come out from under the rock is that a lot of couples aren't able to weather the storm that an illness can bring about. It's life changing and if you've got plans and a direction that you're already heading in, it can be hard to navigate your way through. We all repeat some version of the infamous "in sickness and in health" vow's when we get married, yet for many people those words go right out the window when put to the test.

Honesty was the key for me. Being open and receptive to hearing the other person's point of view was also key. Let's face it, anyone who knows me knows that I can be pretty dramatic at times. So when they outline a list of a hundred "possible" side effects that you can get from chemo, I'm the type that would think that I had them all. My husband's the type of person that doesn't buy into things like side effects. How did we mesh the two worlds? A lot of dialogue, topped off with a little bit of "I told you so":) Things will change, but as in life you have to be open to changing with them. I know this is easier said than done, as I'm still having trouble in this area. Some day's will be great and some day's will feel like you just took twenty steps backwards.

Being able to say, I hear you makes the world of difference. I may not agree with you, but I hear you and as long as you hear me, we're moving in the right direction.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Good News!!

I had my long awaited 3 month check-up today and all is well..still kicking cancer's butt!! My next appointment is in March. I did pretty well with the whole nerves thing, that is until I approached the hospital...that huge "Cancer Institute" sign that you can see a mile away is pretty daunting:) No matter how long you've been at it, it's still hard to believe that you have any business what so ever in that building. It' s seriously one of those buildings that you drive by all the time, for most of your life even...without ever having to venture inside.

Before I reached the hospital I made peace with cancer. Actually, a few weeks back I decided that I was going to move forward with everything I wanted to do in life and deal with whatever comes my way when the time comes. The sense of peace it's given me is amazing!! Of course I have amazing people in my life who have played a huge role in my positive outlook. Those who lead by example, yet have no idea what a huge impact that has on those around them.

I'm thankful and grateful to be in such good company.


Friday, December 5, 2008

Why I blog...

I'm becoming more and more aware of how increasingly difficult it is for my friends and family to read my blog. It's gotta be hard to know someone so well, yet realize that you may not really know them at all... Having front row access to someones inner-thoughts can leave you victim to an acute case of "over-sharing".

As I've stated before the only way to successfully complete my mission of spreading Ovarian Cancer Awareness is by being honest and hopefully with that honesty I'll be able to reach more people than I ever thought possible. Unfortunately, some of what I have to say can be a little hard to handle for my loved ones. So as I continue to throw caution to the wind, I would like those who know me personally to remember that this is all apart of my journey...a journey to a happier, healthier,me!!


Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Another first...

Where to begin...So I received a phone call today from my very best friend in the whole world. I knew this day would come eventually as I'm pretty sure the world didn't stop just because I had cancer. My friend called to tell me that she's pregnant with her first child. A bitter sweet moment for us all...How would you feel is you wanted to scream from the rooftop that your pregnant...yet you're painfully reminded that your joy, this amazing gift has the potential to bring extreme sadness to someone you care deeply for. I think I would have been alright with the news had my friend not tried so hard to break the news gently. "Breaking the news gently" magnified things to the 10th power. It was a brutal reminder that this is an experience that I will never know. An experience that was taken away from me without any warning. An experience that I will always wonder about, a true what if moment.

I'm sure my friend will be reading this entry, as she usually checks in to catch a glimpse of my inner-thoughts...I know for a fact that she will check in as today was a day of joy, elation, sadness, and lost all wrapped in one. I tried my best to explain to my friend that this is just apart of life, my path. I understand her compassion for me and my situation, but I don't ever want anyone to mask their joy or feel sorry for me. I can't speak for all women in my situation, but I can say this for myself without any doubt...the best way to handle me is to be normal. Don't allow me an opportunity to wallow, don't treat me with kit gloves...I won't break. This method will not work for everyone, but for me I think it's the answer.

What I promised my friend is that it's true, I will have my moment's there's no escaping them...but my moment's would come whether she was pregnant or if any other women I encountered in my travels were pregnant. It's part of life. It's part of being a survivor. There are so many things to grateful for, most of all I'm grateful that I'm of sound mind and body and for me that trumps everything.

I love you girl!! God bless you and your wonderful miracle!!


Monday, December 1, 2008

All in due time...

I'm back from my holiday "hiatus". I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving...I believe I brought back a cold from up north...I'm so not use to wearing coat's and going back and forth from hot to cold. It's either a cold or really bad allergies:)

I'm getting ready to go to the Dr.'s office shortly, I have an appointment to get my CA125 drawn(blood-test used as a tumour marker to gage the presence of cancer in your body). Next week is my 3 month check-up, so we have to have those number's in before I see the doctor. My check-up is looming over my head, yet I'm not really nervous about it...I'm probably more anxious than nervous. I'm ready for him to say keep doing what you're doing and I'll see ya in 3 months!!

It's funny, I was talking with a friend today and she made mention of how crazy it was that my life was now filled with Dr.'s appointments and such...It reminded us of how quickly life can change. If it's one thing I've learned from my experience with cancer is that we're resilient. We can adapt to any situation and in time it can become a seamless part of our lives and our day to day routines...At the time that new things are presenting themselves in our world and change becomes feels like something that is so foreign could never become so routine. Yet it does...sure there are days when you still wonder when you made that left turn and got off course...but for me there are many more days when I realize that it's all par for the course...