Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Friday July 28, 2006

This morning I had a new nurse, Dietra. I am still on the respirator. I can only answer with blinking of my eyes for yes and no answers. I once saw a show about this, never though I would be the one doing it though.

At 8:30am I went in for a CT scan. The scan lasted until 10am!! When I returned to the ICU, I was breathing on my own. The doctors told my husband and parents that they will hopefully be able to pull the tube out by the end of the day. Oh how nice that would be. The tube is VERY uncomfortable. I hate not being able to talk.

The doctors were right. They took the tube out at 11:30am. I can breathe good now. That was the weirdest feeling getting it out too. I hope to never have to do this again. This was my moms favorite birthday present. Today is her birthday. All she wanted was for me to breathe on my own.

While I couldn't talk because of the tube in my throat, I saw my Great Grandma Pace. I was very close to her. I have seen her a lot since she has passed away. Always in my dreams though. This moment while in ICU with my parents standing next to me I saw her. She was standing next to my mom. She was wearing her favorite flower/butterfly shirt too. I miss her terribly. I'm so glad I know that I am not going through this alone. I have both sides fighting for me:-) I kept trying to have my mom guess what I wanted to say, but she couldn't understand. I kept looking to her side hoping she would understand. It's hard not talking!! So when they took the tube out I asked my mom if she saw Great Grandma. She didn't, but she said she sure felt a presence.

By noon Dr. Vermino came in to discuss the blood cleansing technique, also known as Plasmapheresis. Plasmapheresis is basically where they take my blood out put this nasty smelling stuff in that strips the cells out and puts the blood back in cleansed. They want to start this tomorrow. He also wants to do a brain biopsy to see if the lesions on my brain are the same as my neck. When I heard this, I got really scared. I've never heard of a blood cleansing technique, nonetheless doing a brain biopsy!! Yikes!! All I pictured was hearing the drill as I had to stay awake and talk to whoever was there. No thanks!

Andrea and Kathryn, my Relief Society President, brought my mom a birthday cheesecake and a gift. I seriously love my friends. It made my mom feel so special that someone thought of her on her birthday instead of it all being about me. I can't thank them enough.

At 2pm Dr Bolke, the radiologist, stopped by to inform us that they are still waiting on the pathology reports. He also wanted to keep us up on the current status ans treatment plan. He said he'll come back again. I like him. He is very nice. I like how he shows that he cares.

When Dr. Bolke left Annette, the nurse, came in to remove the IV lines. All the other stuff had to be taken out because my arms are starting to get too swollen. I'm so tired of getting new IV's. She gave me a shot of morphine before putting the new IV in, but it didn't work. The pain was so bad. What happens is is that I'm on a continuous drip in my IV of pain meds, so when they have to change it out they have to stop the drip and change it all and start the drip back up. So I don't get any pain meds until the drip starts again. The morphine shot did nothing for the pain. I can't believe how painful this is. Some of the nurses are quick and some are not so talented. This all happens every three days too. This way the IV doesn't get clogged. I'm sure getting use to the pokes though!!

At 6pm the doctors put in the tubes for the blood cleansing. They put in the inner right thigh right by your private. Right right by your private. That is one of the most sensitive spots too. Apparently there is a main artery there. Lucky for my mom and dad, they let them stay to watch the whole thing. My dad thought it was the coolest thing. I think I would if it wasn't happening to me.

Later I went down for another MRI. This time it was after visiting hours, so everyone had to leave. I hate that. All I know is that the MRI lasted past 10pm. It is so long being in a small tube being a quad. I'm starting to get use to these though.

Just a side note...When Randy returned home he found this HUGE spider in our garage!!!!

Look!! It's still so stinkn' big next to Randy's hand even being dead!!! Yuck!

Here's a cute picture of my little niece Shaelynn to help get that awful image of the spider out of your head:-)

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Thursday July 27, 2006

This morning I woke up and had a bath. It was weird not having my mom here to help out. She's always been here to help from the beginning. Dr. Beshay came in to help give me different pain medicine. All I kept doing was praying and praying. I hurt so bad. I remember last night seeing angels around me. I think they were here to make me feels safe and to also watch over me. That gives me comfort.
When my mom and dad came I told them that I felt it was very important that our Prophet, President Hinckly knew that I was teaching the Primary children the primary songs. I wanted him to know that even though I cannot read music at all, that I was still able to teach the children. Fulfilling my calling..
Later today Dr. Burton came in to tell me that he thinks we need to transfer to a bigger cancer hospital like MD Anderson in Houston that can treat rare cancers. I don't want to go there right in the middle of the hurricane season!! We thought about Huntsman Cancer Institute in Salt Lake City Utah. If I want to beat cancer, then I need my family there to support me. My parents had to leave the ICU, so they called Sabrina. She then called Huntsman and asked lots of questions and getting answers. Meanwhile my parents and Randy were thinking of how they can fly me there. I can't sit up but for just a few minutes at a time. Not long enough for a SWA flight. The cancer hospital doesn't have a plane either. It was mom kept saying maybe Oprah or John Travolta can take me on their plane!! I love my mom. But really..they are too busy to think about me. But hey, she's trying to be creative to get me there. I love that!! The doctors suggested Angel flight, but they didn't have anyone available. We called our insurance and talked about a private medical flight that would have a medical flight nurse to help take care of me if needed. This was the way we were going to go.
At 9:30am Dr. Beshay came in to tell me that they have to do surgery on my neck. It's on the C2-C3 area. I will go in at 2pm. Wow!! He sure didn't give me much time to recover. They are worried about the tumor and how much weaker my arms are getting. They think that if I don't do this then I will be on the respirator by Friday. They are hoping that this surgery will help relieve the pressure on my lungs. Another 4 hour surgery.
The Bishop and my sisters are watching my kids at my house for me. This way Randy and my parents can stay late.
After the surgery Dr. Morrill came to my family after the surgery to let them know that it wasn't a tumor on my neck, but a lesion. He said that if it was a tumor like the one on my sacrum, then he was prepared to tell them that I only had maybe 6 more months to live. He was glad that he could tell us that it wasn't a tumor, but now he is thinking it is now maybe MS or a degenerative disorder along with the tumor that has given me my paralysis from the waist up. I'm glad we are starting to get some answers. Dr. Morrill wants to start some blood cleansing therapy and also do a brain biopsy.
AT 9pm my family all had to go home. Randy to the house and my parents to the hotel. I stayed on the respirator in ICU over night.
There I was laying in the ICU all by myself. The nurses tell my family that I am doing ok through the night. I got a bath and had some x-rays of my lungs. My sweet mom called at 4am. She couldn't sleep. They reassured her that I was stable and strong. I couldn't imagine being my mom. I would be calling every hour!! My mom is such a good mom.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Wednesday July 26, 2006

Well the 26th looks like the BIG day!! At 6:30am my husband, Randy, and my dad gave me a beautiful blessing of strength and safety. I'm sop grateful that I can have a priesthood blessing. I know that everything said was coming straight from my Father in Heaven.
At 8am I left for the surgery. My nurse Carol took me. My sisters, Sabrina and Jen, are staying at my house with my boys. My husband, mom and dad are waiting in the waiting room until I'm done. At 1pm Dr. Morrill came out to let my family know what happened. He said that my nerves were being protected in some kind of sheeting that kept them safe from the tumor. ANOTHER MIRACLE!!! A spinal tap #2 was done along with the biopsy of my right shoulder. I had to stay in ICU overnight. When my parents were with me I asked for a kiss. I'm so scared. I know my Heavenly Father is holding me in his arms right now though. At 8:30pm they had to leave. I was all alone now. Well sort of. I know I will spend the night with Jesus and Heavenly Father.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Tuesday July 25, 2006

Today I woke up with the feeling that it's ok. My body is only temporary. I told my mom, so that we can both feel better about the surgeries to come. I haven't ever had a surgery, so the fact that my body is being cut into all the time hasn't sat well with me.

Dr Beshay came in to check on me. He said that it would be better to do a neck biopsy than the brain biopsy. Oh man was I so relieved! He is going to bring in the film of my MRI to show us the spots on the brain. Cool! Well to look at it, not cool that they are there.

Dr. Burton then came in and told us that the brain biopsy was not needed. He believes it is either a Osteosarcoma or a Chondroblastic Osteosarcom. I am so relieved he doesn't have to do the brain biopsy. So relieved. Answers to my prayer for sure.

Surgery will be tomorrow at 8:15am. They said they would take me down around 7-7:30am. They are going to take as much of the mass in my tailbone area as possible out.

Betty, Brenda's mom, came to visit me today. My mom loves her. I think my mom needed her more than I did. It was nice. Betty came at a time when we needed a break from everything. She definitely put smiles on our faces. She also gave us a card that had LOTS of money in it to help us out. Her son has been through hospital experiences and she knows how expensive it will get. It was very generous of her. Thank you Betty.

My other friend Sherri Baxter, who was one of my first friends when I moved here to Texas, sent me some flowers. She had moved away, but we still keep in touch. I loved the blue vase they came in.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Monday July 24, 2006

This morning Dr. Beshay and Dr. Morell came in to tell me that they have to do a biopsy of my brain...YIKES!! I really don't think I can handle something like that. A drill drilling in my skull and pulling out pieces while I am awake??!! I don't think so!! I'll pass.

They also said that they were going to remove the tumor in my lower spine on Wednesday. The surgery should last about 4-6 hours. The risks are paralysis and/or bowel problems. While they are in surgery they will also biopsy the shoulder. The are thinking the shoulder is benign, but they want to make sure. Also the wrist is a shadow for sure. Yeah!

Michael Coon, my best friends husband, came to visit. It was a nice surprise. It's also nice when you get gifts and flowers from other friends that can't make it:

The oncologist came in to inform us that so far they are thinking it is an Osteosarcoma or a chrondrosarcoma. Try saying that three times fast!!

I know to most going the bathroom is easy. Well for me it isn't. It is horrible. Embarrassing and painful. Usually it consists of an enema, then a nurse delivering it. Yes, a nurse helping my poo come out. I seriously don't think they get paid enough. Ok, now that you get the picture of how it's been..I was able to poo today without an enema!!! Finally! It's the little things right now.

My two best friends, Andrea and Amber, came and visited me tonight. They are true friends. I can't tell you how much I love them. I need a break from the hospital nurses.

The orthopedic surgeon came in to talk to us about the surgery and what may happen. He said that they may have to take my tailbone out. Really??!! How can someone live without one? I was shocked. He mentioned that sometimes you can put a steel rod in it's place. Oh yeah, can you just see me now going through the airport scanners??!! Just the thought makes me laugh! But whatever they have to do.

A funny story happened later tonight. My poor sweet mom, who thought she would get sleep, is woken up by me to scratch. Yep scratch. My bum. Since I can't move my arms anymore and man did it itch, I asked for her help!!!! Yes, it is called motherly love when your mom helps you out. Her and I laughed about it all night. I don't know why it itched so bad, but it did. I'm just grateful that I have a mom that would do that for me. Also I really think she is grateful for sheets and bacterial soap!!

Monday, January 16, 2012

Sunday July 23, 2006

I had another spinal tap today. I laid I thought. I woke up with a sever headache. It really paralyzes you. The doctors gave me a caffeine drip. Wow, it worked fast and was so nice. it took away the headache and REALLY woke me up!!
Can you tell I'm on drugs?!

This shows where the spinal tap was done. Yikes!!

My friends Michelle, Jeni, and Chesney visited me later at nigh. They were so sweet. They brought me s gift basket full of goodies. One really soft blanket too!! I talked and talked and talked. I think it was because of that caffeine drip gave me more energy. We all had a good laugh about it though. After they left my poor mom had to stay and listen to me:-) Yep, all night!!

My family stayed at my house tonight. I know my mom was happy to stay with me, but very tired and sore from sleeping on a little piece of foam. I know she wouldn't have it any other way though. That's what mom's do.
Cameron playing with his cousin Shaelynn. So stinkn' cute!!

Article from David Haas...

Exercise Won't Beat Cancer But it will Help You

The health benefits a person gets from exercise are numerous. Everyone knows that exercise, combined with a healthy diet is the best form of health imaginable. The benefits of exercise are not merely physical; there are more benefits that you cannot see than there are ones you can. This is precisely the reason everyone, especially those undergoing mesothelioma treatment should make exercise a part of their daily routine in order to make it easier to breathe when undergoing so much stress on the lungs.

The physical benefits of exercise are well known. Your body looks better and you are stronger; and while the physical aspects of exercise are a great reason to motivate you to get up and get active, it is the internal benefits that make exercising with cancer so important. Exercise produces hormones in your body that lower your stress level. A high stress level causes your immune system to suffer and your body is unable to fight disease and illness at its full potential. When you exercise, your stress levels are lowered and as a result, your immune system rebuilds and becomes stronger when fighting illness. Since cancer is a disease and affects your health; your immune system needs to be at its best to give you the strength to handle the treatments you are given.

In addition, exercise also boosts your mood. When you are feeling down because of your treatments and your diagnosis, physical activity will help boost your mood and make you happier and less defeated, angry or depressed. This is beneficial because a better mood makes handling your treatments easier. The National Cancer Institute recommends cancer patients include physical activity in their daily schedule as often as possible; while it will not cure you of cancer the benefits it does provided are immeasurable.

The process of going through treatment for any type of cancer is grueling at times and there are days when you will not want to move; and sometimes when you simply cannot. Don’t worry; it happens. When you have the energy and the ability to exercise – do it. When you don’t, do stress yourself out trying. If all you can muster the energy to do is take a walk around your living room, take a walk around your living room. You can always exercise on a day when you have more energy and are feeling more like yourself.

The kind of exercise you do while you go through your cancer treatments depends on what your doctor recommends for you. Walking is always a good form of exercise, as is swimming, biking and cardio activity. A mere 20 minutes a day of exercise is enough to keep you fit, healthy and feeling good about yourself. Take control of your body during treatments by exercising.