3 weeks and counting…

by debi9kids on April 4, 2020

So we’ve been on quarantine for three weeks now. It started first for our family because we actually thought we had the Corona virus and three of us were really sick. We had fevers, sore throats, coughs, and were just exhausted. No matter how much sleep we got it just didn’t feel like it was enough. However, after waiting nearly a week after being tested the results came back – negative. We didn’t have Corona. We just had some other horrible virus.

Now as we’re all starting to feel better the state of Pennsylvania is on lockdown. Only essential workers are supposed to be leaving their homes. I’m an essential worker because I work in a cancer clinic and both David and Henry are considered essential workers due to their jobs as well (they are my only adult children that still live at home). So, come Monday we will be officially back in “harms way”.

The past three weeks I’ve had a lot of time to really think. I suppose if I wanted to I could really be bitter about how some things have played out in my life… divorce, college, cancer, relationship ending …. but I’m not. Or. I’m really trying not to be. I’m trying my best to find purpose in everything that happens in life and these past three weeks I’ve been looking for purpose in the Corona virus.

I’ve long thought that we {people} take life for granted. We’re not just missing out on the beauty of the earth around us but missing out on the beauty in the simplicity in front of us. We take for granted the simple moments like tucking our children into bed, kissing them goodnight, hugging our friends hello… and boy, this Corona virus was like a slap in the face and I think it’s made a whole lot of people realize just how much they depend and crave human touch and love and maybe, just maybe that’s the point.

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One year later.

by debi9kids on May 17, 2018

Yesterday was the one year anniversary of my mastectomy.
I can’t even begin to tell you what an overwhelming sentence that is to write (although nothing compared to living it).

A year.

Sometimes that year feels like a blur.
Sometimes an eternity.
But always something worthy of being grateful.

When I was diagnosed, my first thought was “mastectomy”.
My last thought was dying.
Because I refused to let myself go there.

Now having experienced the mastectomy, the reconstruction, and the aftermath of cancer and major surgery, I can say the only thing harder than surviving cancer is death.

I was supposed to have a second and third phase of my reconstruction.
(I didn’t.)
I need it but I can’t bring myself to go through surgery any time soon.
A lumpectomy,
followed by a lumpectomy,
followed by a failed port placement, followed by port placement,
followed by chemo,
followed by a mastectomy and reconstruction,
followed by heart surgery…
It’s enough.

But to be honest,
I’m not done with surgery.
I wish I was.

The side effects from cancer and surgery a year later are less intense but still vivid.
Unfortunately.
I’m still horribly forgetful,
have generalized weakness everywhere,
struggle with insomnia and restless leg syndrome,
have pain in my joints,
still have low blood pressure and high heart rate,
and am anemic.

Cancer.
The gift that keeps on giving.

But
I’m alive.
And for that
I am grateful.

No matter how bad I feel or how worried I get thinking it might return,
I try to remind myself often that I’m still here.

And I remember my pink sisters who aren’t.
And I try not to take my life for granted.

Because you just never know.

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Why me?

January 28, 2018

There Is SO much guilt associated with cancer… What did I do to make this happen? Was it my diet? My lifestyle? Where I lived? The stress in my life? Why me? Why not her or him? (And then the guilt of wondering why it shouldn’t be someone else…) And the worst, why am I […]

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late night ramblings of a cancer survivor

November 9, 2017

It’s 1:40am and I’m lying awake waiting for my medication to kick in so I can fall asleep. I’m exhausted. But I don’t really sleep anymore, not without help anyway. I guess there’s too much running through my mind and I can’t shut it off. On October 19th I had an ablation done on my […]

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N.E.D.

October 11, 2017

No evidence of disease. You’d think those words would bring me comfort. They don’t. Doctors don’t really say, “Remission,” anymore. They say,”NED.” That’s it. It pretty much means the same thing, but to me it’s just kind of saying, “There’s no evidence of disease Right Now.” I was told a strange depression comes over you […]

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Pink. The Old Black.

October 6, 2017

There’s this Audrey Hepburn quote I have on my Facebook about the color pink. I used it as a header there for a while because I liked what the words says (honestly, I like most everything Audrey Hepburn had to say… what a classy woman). But, I digress. I remember when I was first diagnosed […]

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The Part Where Nurse Ratchet Tried To Kill Me

August 25, 2017

It’s been a bit since I continued my story and I apologize. Things have been… Hectic. And not great. I’ve been having some side effects from my chemotherapy and surgery and struggling and unfortunately it’s kept me from being able to go to work (which I desperately need to make ends meet). Anyway… Back to […]

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