Sunday, March 23, 2014

A Nice Day Out

The weather has been amazing here in Utah and yesterday we finally enjoyed it. We carved out some time to enjoy being together as a family. For a moment I forgot about cancer. My kids were playing with their cousins and we were laughing at my brothers jokes. Mom was there with us, enjoying the sunshine and the conversation. Dad shared a silly story about lifes unexpected trials. We talked about movies, kids, housework and funny memories. The kids played baseball and football. I know that we have been blessed to have Troy, Camille and their 4 kids here with us. They will have to head back to Germany on Wednesday and we will all fall into a new normal. But for a few hours we left the storm behind and enjoyed life.
This painting reminds us that Jesus can calm the storms in our lives. That he has power over nature and over our bodies. None of this is a surprise to Him and even when He doesn't stop the storm He will carry us through it.
Tomorrow is my parents 41st wedding anniversary and the day my mom begins chemotherapy. 
Please be praying for her and my dad.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Yesterday I had my " ZIPPER" removed. The Dr. used a staple removal to get them all. It felt as if I were being stung by a bee, 37 really was not bad just a bit tender around the belly button. I am scheduled to start Chemotherapy on Monday, March 24, 2014. However..there has to be a"however".  We still don't know if I qualify. For the chemotherapy clinical Trial..We should find out tomorrow. If I don't qualify then chemotherapy will be on Monday (our 41st wedding anniversary) if I do qualify then it will start around the first week in April. The concerns are my feeding tube. Having it and not being able to eat by mouth just may disqualify me...OH WELL...

We have had the best care. I don't know if I posted that I am being treated at Mckay Dee, in Odgen Utah. Everyone one has gone out of their way to help us and to guide us through this difficult process. What a blessing it is for us. Being able to meet so many wonderful, carrying people. Right from the start of this I told Dr. Hansen and Dr. Moesinger that I wanted total honesty I wanted to make informed decisions. Roy and I told them that we do have our living wills and what we expect when the end comes. We have been honest in both directions. If we can share one thing with you. It would be to get your family and health care team on the same page. Let them know what your end of life plans are. This is a hard conversation to have.but it is so important. The last thing we want to happen is to hurt and to leave the ones we love. But the ONLY things we all have in common is that we all have been born and the other is that we all will die. I don't know how much time I have left but neither do you. I can't help but wonder. A year maybe 2, hum maybe 10years..Trust in the Lord

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Our Chief

I'm not sure what I want to write.
I want to say how watching my grandmother's fight with cancer was so hard,
but how we have so many amazing memories during her years with cancer.
How with the hard, there was laughter and joy and fun.
How strong she was, how she hide her pain with a smile or a joke, or a diet coke.
How I see so much of this with my mom.

As Jennell said she has a great poker face.
How cancer might steal a lot from us, but we have so much to look forward to.
Time spent together laughing and crying, but mostly laughing because my mom is funny.

Thank you mom, you are our chief.
We follow you with your strength and love.
We are grateful for your testimony and for sharing this time with us.

My favorite lame joke

So here is my all time favorite lame joke. Don't be surprised if you read this and end up just shaking your head thinking ( what ) then later on it will hit you and then you will start laughing.

There were three cannibal clowns. One died. As the two other clowns were eating him, one clown looked at the other and asked "Does he taste funny to you?"

Tender Mercy #1

I have been having times that I feel so good. Times, that I totally forget that I have cancer. It maybe only for 5min. But what a blessing, to be pain and worry free, then all the sudden it comes back. I know that these times are gifts from our Lord. I know that during these times I need to just stop and thank my Heavenly Father. In a time of panic and total pain I have felt his embrace and I know that I have had others who has been down this path before me here by my bed. I have felt my mom beside me. I have felt her spirit so strong that it surprised me that I could not see her. How ever I knew she and others were here and will be here to help me along this jurney. How wonderful it is to know that there is life after death and that we CAN be together as a family again. What a blessing it is to KNOW and to beable to say I Believe In Christ.that I Believe In God , Our Heavenly Father. I not only Believe in them but I truly love them. We all have Heros
 and they are mine

Saturday, March 15, 2014

This is what I call my ZIPPER

As you can see the Dr cut me all the way down to my groin. It was supposed to "only" go to the top of my belly button. When he opened me up and saw cancer everywhere, he opened me the rest of the way so he could have a better look.Yes this was very painful and now that I am almost 2 weeks out from surgery it is more of a tight tugging feeling. I am hopeful that the staples, all 37of them, will be removed this coming Tuesday March 18, 2014. I have found that using a heating pad has helped with the stiffness and with pain control.I can't wait to have them gone. I can't start Chemotherapy until I am all healed up.

This is my feeding tube
I need to get a picture of me hooked up to the FOOD..I have 1 bag of water 
That is Used to flush the tubing every 3hrs. Then another bag full of my "food", fiber source feeding tube formula no flavor..well that is what the label says on them. Sounds good doesn't it. Also the port is used to give me my meds. It takes about 12hours of being hooked up to get 600 calories. At first this was painful and having this tubing rapped around my guts really was painful. Now 2 weeks out from surgery I feel very full and tight. I can feel all of my intestines and the "Food" just rolls around and right back out of me. So I stay near a bathroom. I will post a picture of me hooked up. It is just like being hooked up to an IV. So I have to drag a pole around with me.  My belly looks so big and flabby and it is, because of the surgery and everything it that it has been put through. Also just in case you've wondering I now weighed in at 116lbs. That is a 20lb. Weight loss since December

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

On February 11-2014. I went into the hospital thinking I had an ulcer.I thought I would be put out and have a simple EGD (scope) done. Then have my meds upped or changed. No big deal right. While Roy and I were waiting to go home the Dr.came in and told us that he was concerned.Two days later I was back in for a colonoscopy and right before I was put out I was told that yes indeed it was cancer.Again there Roy and I were waiting to go home and the Dr.came in and spent quiet abit of time with us.5 cn.. I will loose my stomach and will be on a feeding tube for the rest of my life..then came CAT scan.MRI.PET scans blood work..all showed the cancer in my stomach and just a little blurry thing in my intestines. That was nothing to worry I go into the hospital for surgery on March 3-2014..At this time I had 3different Dr.s telling me different locations of where the cancer was in my stomach. One said it was at the top of my stomach. Which meant I would loose my whole stomach. Then the next said that it was in the lower part which meant I would loose only part of my stomach. That would've been the best case. Then the last one said that it was all over my stomach. So when I was waking up I asked if I had a feeding tube.when I was told"Yes"I knew that it wasn't good.At that time I just shanked deeper into my bed. I know I asked another question and was told that my family were in my room waiting for me. As I was wheeled into my room the first thing I saw was my 3girls faces,then my poor husbands face. I knew it wasn't good news. The surgeon opened me up and all he saw was small"pods" "seeds"oh I don't remember what all he called them. He said that it looks like someone poured a bunch of sand all over everything and everywhere. I have stage 4Adenocarcinoma of the stomach. Gastrointestinal cancer. My only hope is to undergo Chemotherapy. Without treatment I will be gone within 1year. With treatment. We just don't know. We or I have decided to participate in a clinical trial. I know there is no hope of me beating this but maybe just maybe this trial will come up with something that can help you or someone else. I have to keep positive that the chemotherapy will work. I have been told that if it does in the beginning there WILL come a day when it will stop. At that time I will be able to meet my and your Savior Jesus Christ. Our Heavenly Father and all of my loved ones that have already passed on. Well I know this has been a long read but I wanted to do this blog to answer any questions you may have about the surgery,why I went to the the first place. I plan on posting some of the tender mercy that I have felt. The out pouring of love..what it is like to not be able to eat. And only getting nutrition from a feeding tube. And some of the funny things that has happened and I am sure there is a whole lot of laughter still to come

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

strength for the moment

My parents are the strongest people I know. Last Monday I watched my mom draw a funny design on her abdomen just to make her surgeon giggle. I saw them laugh and joke. I could see the worry but I never saw fear. When the surgeon told us about my mom's cancer, I looked at the ground and thought there must be some mistake. 

When they brought my mom to her room, where we were waiting I saw the strength of ten thousand men in my dad. In a the kindest most loving way he told her that she had stage 4 stomach cancer. The surgeon weighed the odds and left the cancer inside her body. Mom will start chemo in two weeks. My dad has vowed to love, cherish and stand by my mom in sickness and health. He is living out those vows right now. 

Mom had some very difficult, pain filled days last week. She is recovering at home now. Her strength and will to fight is apparent to all of us. It does my heart good to see the progress she is making each day. She is embracing every moment and has a smile on her face. That smile is her strength for all to see. No matter what lies ahead we are ready for the battle. I love you mom!

Psalms 46:1 KJV

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Why we're blogging

My amazingly strong mother was diagnose with stomach cancer.
On Monday March 3rd 2014, she went in for surgery to have her stomach removed.
The surgeon found little seeds of cancer threw out her abdomen.
What we thought would be a surgery and some chemo, quickly became something much more.
It went from maybe Stage 2 to Stage 4.

This to record her journey and our family's journey as we all fight.