December 22, 2014: Care Package Day

Jonathan took me out today to spend some time in the warm sunshine, to do a little shopping, to drop some things off with my aunt, and to see if I could tolerate traveling in the truck. It doesn’t sound like that much, but it totally wore me out. 

Sometimes I feel like I suffer from narcolepsy. I’ll be fine and then BAM! I’m fast asleep. Not a little asleep either. I’m completely knocked out without any warning. Once I wake up, I can’t remember going to sleep. I wake up confused. It’s kinda scary. 

We had stopped to pick up something for our kids to eat a few miles from home. I had one of these “sleeps” during the ride home. As I was sleeping, Jon stopped at the office and picked up packages. One of my teammates from school dropped packages off from my students at the house while we were gone. The UPS guy dropped off more packages. I woke up to a table full of gifts. Wow! I felt super spoiled today!

These special people span from my childhood to my previous job in Canyon to my current life and career. I received so many things I can’t even list them all. I can say I think I have enough socks to get me through every chemo treatment now. No more cold tootsies for me! I also have more Burt’s Chapstick which is good because I seem to misplace mine a lot. Now, I can place one in all my special locations so I will stop losing them. The timing of lemon drops and Jolly Ranchers couldn’t have been more perfectly timed. I’ve managed to avoid all the mouth issues until this morning. A thin, long, sliver of a blister formed on the roof of my mouth along my gum line. When it popped this evening, it was like a brand new dose of chemo erupted inside my mouth leaving me with the taste of chemo forever in my mouth. YUCK!

Smells continue to keep me on the edge of nausea. I struggle with smells more than anything else. Everything that’s supposed to be calming and relieve nausea creates nausea. Not fun. 

Fatigue is my other enemy. If I can’t sleep, for whatever reason, my restless leg syndrome issues come back making it hard to go to sleep once I’m ready. It’s a daily battle for balanced naps. 

I did manage to clean all my toilet bowls today. I don’t know why this made me feel so accomplished, but it did. I also managed to wash and dry a load of clothes. 

We had our little family Christmas this evening. Jonathan bought me some funny cancer shirts. Humor has helped us cope so much. I can’t wait to wear them! I won’t be the only one smiling, I promise. 

Our kids usually get big ticket items for Christmas, but that didn’t happen this year. In fact, they were both really hard to buy for because they really wouldn’t ask for anything. As hard as this has been for them, they’ve all shown their own moments of strength. It makes me proud of them. When they struggle, it breaks my heart. I just want to hold them in my arms and rock them like I did when they were little, but that’s too painful even if they’d let me. K’Lee has really had a hard time with everything. It was good to see her take my wig stand and “do” its makeup. It was such a sweet K’Lee thing to do. I loved it! 

My poor husband is so tired. He’s probably looking forward to being at his parents’ house just so he can get a break. He knows once I’m there he won’t have to be my primary caregiver. He’s in need of a mini vacation. I can’t ask for more from him. He gives me his all every day without complaint. I’m really hard work, & I fear I’m aging him. It makes me proud to be his wife, yet so sad  because of all he’s having to go through. 

Now that I’m starting to regain my range of motion, the stiffness in my chest is so evident. I work each day to raise my arms a little more, to move out even more. There’s this fear I’ll tear something, so it’s a seemingly slow process.  I can pull sweatshirts over my head now. I thought I’d have to go the entire winter without my sweatshirts, but it’s not looking that way now. Yay! I love my sweatshirts. I’m probably one of the few people in DFW that wears sweatshirts every month of the year. Yep, I’m that kind of crazy!

Our friends from here hooked me up with a #finishthefight Dallas Cowboy shirt. Jon bought me a Dallas Cowboy beanie for my birthday, so I’m ready for the playoffs! The Dallas Cowboys had no idea how much their motto would be a part of my journey, yet here we are fighting together for two totally separate things but the message remains the same. 

I’ve completed our church Advent reading program. It reminded me we put way too much emphasis and value on things this time of year and not enough on our Savior. I’m sure there are many who write and say the same, but knowing you are walking the thin line between life and death has a way of completely changing your perspective. The value of my faith in Jesus is a priceless gift. 

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About courage2conquercancer

At the age of 40, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. This is an account of my journey from my discovery and beyond.
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