Monday, July 1, 2013

Four Weeks

Moving upward and onward.  It's true :)

Every night my head hits my pillow, I remember the past 4 to 11 months.  I remember laying there during recovery and I remember the direction we're headed.  I feel grateful, I feel humbled, I feel prayerful, and I feel emotion.  Time is so many things to us, and it can also be a friend.  Time is filled with memories.  As time passes, it takes our present friend and travels her into the past.  And though good, its painful too.  I never want to forget this time, this experience, the stopping, the questioning, the thinking, the crying, the wondering, the laughing, the outpour of love, the learning and learning and learning :).  I want to hold onto and never let go of the time with those dearest to me, time with Tim, my  mother, my dad, my sisters, my brothers, my aunts, my cousins, my friends.

Benni said I would experience the phases of loss and grief at different times, that they might reoccur, and that it was okay.  As crazy as it may seem, part of that experience is losing this experience of loss.  No, I haven't completely lost it (now I sound crazy ;)) but the time is passing, and I am moving forward.  Though difficult to explain, part of moving forward is tough because it is truly letting go, accepting what happened, realizing it is okay if I don't learn or remember everything I needed to know, accepting myself again and again, and then looking to the future.  I'm not trying to be dramatic, no, truly my situation has been the best it could be, I'm in awe at how fortunate and blessed I am.  Saying that, I still feel the need to acknowledge that the tears are okay, even though I don't always understand them, that though I'm grateful to have such a good life, I miss it, her, them, then.  So much was happening deep inside me, so much still is.

But again, deep breath in, hold, now out.
Because of Him and all of you, we're moving onward and upward :)

Monday, June 17, 2013

Two weeks :)

Wow, time has really flown by.  Things have been quite similar and quite different this round.  As I headed into surgery on June 3rd, and as I was laying on the flat chair/bed/cot thing looking at the ceiling with the oxygen mask on, knowing in moments I would zonk out ;), I realized what a different feeling it was this time internally.  This time, there would be changes, but no DCIS, no mass that needed to be taken out, no fear that certain parts of the skin would need to be removed, no concern about cancer in the lymph nodes, no saying goodbye to the left side, just hello to the new, no hospital but a surgical center.  There was no snow on the ground, it was not cold nor dark outside, but rather warm, green, and with obvious signs that the sun was beginning her day here.  This time, mom, Tim, and Mel were with me, and I would wake up to dad being with me too.

We arrived around 7am, and I believe the surgery was some bit after 8am.  After being under general anesthesia, I awoke around 1:30pm-ish.  I want to write how it was, but no worries or feeling bad.  Really, my experience was quite good.  At any rate, as I awoke, I felt incredible pain, as I had after the first surgery, but somehow this felt worse, and perhaps that is because of all the nerves working on the right side that may not have been as engaged on the left side that first time.  My body was shaking a good bit, perhaps from the anesthesia, but it felt a bit rough and I didn't seem to be able to stop myself from crying.  After a bit, I was moved to a place where my mom and dad came, and that helped - I was so surprised and glad to see dad, and happy to focus on something other than how I felt.  Dad and Mom were wonderful, and then so were Tim and Melanie.  They were all cute and cheerful and got me through that first while.

When I was good to go home, everyone was so helpful.  I was shocked at how soon I could leave and really impressed by how my body seemed to be able to make the location change.  It was much more difficult trying to move around after that first surgery.  We made it home and dad and Tim helped me into my bed.  Dad became my pillow engineer throughout the week, and everyone helped me be as comfortable as possible.  Getting up and out of bed required lifting assistance from others, eating also did since I was in and out of it a good bit at first, but still needed to eat something in order to take my medications.  It was kinda cute with dad feeding me those first few days; I asked him if it reminded him of feeding me as a little child :)

It is so sureal to go through surgery and have others taking care of you, I can't explain it, but I feel so grateful for everyone's help, so grateful.  I feel grateful for a dad who woke up during the middle of the night to give me pain medication, who kept alarms going for my pain and antibiotic meds, and who was always checking my water and ice bag needs, and helped me get up and down.  It was sweet having Tim sitting on the floor reading quietly as I rested, being fed ice cubes and water by him and dad, having Mel bring over a pillow of hers and visiting with her, having my ever considerate and loving mother always checking my food needs, helping me in the bathroom, washing my face, brushing my hair, helping me in the shower, etc.  I loved going on walks with my parents later in the week, spending time with them, with Tim, with my aunt and uncle's family watching a movie together...something I rarely do.  Meals brought by others were so generous, and messages, texts, visits, and calls to check up on me were so thoughtful and so kind.  It was a gift having mom help me organize my room, me not doing much, and her doing pretty much everything so that I could feel more clear with less clutter.  Having my parents with me was something I just can't adequately describe.  I will always treasure it.  It was sweet, it was enlightening, it was tender and it was full of growth.  I loved my discussions with them; talking with them helped me get through some of the difficult emotions I processed, especially that first week.

Things are so good now.  I'm moving forward and the Lord is really helping me gain strength every day.  What a gift it is to walk, run, swim, bike, hike, sing, laugh, talk, move.  What a gift our bodies are!  What a gift it is to take time to sit, sleep!, listen, pray, read, be still.  What a gift family, friends, neighbors, and acquaintances are.  There is soooo much good, we each have to look for it, but as we do, we will see more, and doors that close will reveal doors that are opening.  I love how my mother keeps reminding us to be thankful for the difficult, the painful, the uncomfortable, the things we struggle to overcome, as well as alllll the good.  The Lord has a plan for each of us.  I'm striving to understand my plan, and looking for ways to discover it, fully live it, and keep lifting up my eyes to Him.  Continually, I see my "lackings", but that's all part of it.  I will be grateful for them :)

What a good situation I've been given, what a good reminder of my blessed life.  Thank you to each who has touched my path.  Thank you to my Father in Heaven who continues to preserve and bless me with far more than I could ever deserve.

Monday, June 10, 2013

One Week :)

Just as an update, I'm doing better, improving every day :)  It's a process and I have to be patient with myself, but that's good for me to learn :)  It's definitely faster this time than last time.

Loves to anyone who reads this.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Moving Forward and Onward :)

In case any of you are wanting the details of tomorrow's party, I mean surgery, here you are :)

Location: Utah Surgical Center
Address: 3715 West 4100 South, West Valley City
Check in at 7am, surgery at about 8am
Stay: til about 12 noon, release same day - awesome, no?  :)

This is the last part of the reconstruction process, in case you're wondering.  I'll be home for the next week with my amazing mom and dad.  They both have miraculously made it work to come and help/support me.  Feeling really grateful :)

Thank you all for your care, concern, prayers, thoughts, messages, cards, flowers, visits, assistance, etc.  It is impossible for me to adequately express my gratitude.  I truly have a blessed life.  Loves to each of you!

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Day 81 - 11 Weeks

In response to Angelina Jolie's Op Ed in the New York Times, May 14, 2013, KSL News ran her story, including a few stories from women here in Utah. They found out about me through a connection in the choir, and contacted me.  Honestly, it happened so fast, I didn't really process who was going to see it, but just knew they wanted to hear my story, so I did an interview with Nkoyo from KSL.  She was super awesome to me, so nice and it was good to talk with her.  They took a couple clips from it and included it in the spots below.

* TV spot was use on the radio but I don't have a copy of that

* Deseret News article, just to be clear though, I did not test positive for the BRCA1 gene, my test thankfully came back negative.  Hopefully this article doesn't come across the breakfast table of any of my doctors!

* KSL News' mini-section of the bigger article, it's called "Utah women share their experience of a mastectomy" by Nkoyo Iyamba. They got the BRCA1 gene info correct, but it's interesting, I did not "argue against such drastic measures" like they say in the article....ah, the news, good ol news reporting ;)

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Day 50 - 7 Weeks

Life is so good, the Lord is so good.  Time has flown by so fast, especially since returning to work, I can hardly believe it's been 7 weeks.  Things are going really well, everything is so much better, as of last Thursday, 6 weeks, I felt this new surge of energy and lightness that reminded me so much of my old self.  This week, it has felt like whatever was dragging a bit, left for good.  There have been so many blessings, and that is a huge one for me.  Yes, I still need to watch it not to overdo it, but truly, every aspect of this experience is on the up, on the mend, and moving forward.

And last night, I met one of the wheelchair participants of this recent Boston Marathon held earlier this week, April 15, Patriot's Day.  It was his first Boston, but he's done countless others through the years.  He is such a beautiful soul, sweet, gentle, without guile, and talking with him touched me so much.  He was a little shook up by the 'chaos' as he called it - he'd finished the race and when the bombs went off, he looked back and saw everything from a booth he was visiting.  Meeting this good man, really inspired me, I can't even explain it, but there was such a good feeling with him, I feel so much a desire to live life to the fullest, to be at peace, and to appreciate and learn from people like him that are so good, so sweet, unassuming, gentle and kind.  Each of us is a child of our Heavenly Father, we're each brothers and sisters.  I know this so deeply within me, and each time the Lord allows me to meet one of his children like Nathan Crowton, I can't help but feel a renewed desire to truly live, to appreciate all around me, and to live with beautiful gratitude as is so evident in Nathan's countenance. 

Friday, March 29, 2013

Day 29 - 4 Weeks

As we head into Good Friday and Easter, I thought I'd give a few updates:
  • The rest of my tape came off today and I'm told things are healing up quite nicely
  • My scar is pretty sweet
  • My arm is starting to gain noticeable strength, almost daily now
  • The shoots and shots of pain, the aches, and other fun things are also decreasing
  • Though it seems I'll be tight in my chest area for a while yet, it's better, not as uncomfortable
  • Mobility has taken a huge turn upward for the better :)
  • I'm approved for using a stationary bike and I'm excited to give that a try!
  • My memory seems to be a little slippery - especially when I try to recall things from those first few weeks :)  But hey, that's cool :)  I love drugs ;)
  • Energy is on the rise, but somehow, I still seem to need soooo much sleep and I still seem to have waves of energy and then realize the wave has passed ;)
  • People are still generously checking in, bringing me cards and/or flowers, etc.  There is no one more spoiled than me and I appreciate it so so much
  • I'm back at work, part-time - I'm blessed with an amazing boss and co-workers - they've been incredible to me
  • One of my most favorite things in this world is sleeping in my bed, and then waking up with my head against my great pillows and just deeply appreciating comfortable rest - man, I'm blessed
  • sister Mary comes home from her mission this Saturday!  That's enough to boost anyone's immune system :).  So grateful for her energy and love for our Savior.  So grateful for her example to me.
Happy Easter to you.  I'm grateful for Easter.  It is one of my absolute favorite holidays.  Without it there would be no Christmas and there would be no hope for life with Heavenly Father after this life is over.  It also has increased meaning for me this year as I remember that each of us who have ever lived and ever will live will be resurrected and have a perfect body someday because of the gift of Christ's resurrection.  We are so blessed.

Loves to each of you :)

Monday, March 18, 2013

Day 19 - My Mother & Being Thankful

Updates :)
  - Stitches are out
  - Tape is off
  - Started the gradual expander element of reconstruction
  - Learned what I can and should not do with my little self
  - Doctors both say I'm healing really well

Special Update :)
  - During last week's cancer conference at the hospital, a panel of doctors, including two radiologists, examined my case. One of the radiologists even went back to his office and did a literature review to make sure he was giving us the most up-to-date and accurate information.  So nice.  Even though the area was wide and touched the skin, studies show that the risk for reoccurrence doesn't change if radiation is done with DCIS.  They even checked a most recent study at Harvard which supported this finding.  So... :) big smiles and a grateful heart, I don't need to do radiation.  What a blessing.  I feel there have been so many blessings, and today, after hearing this news, once I was home, I just cried.  I feel I've been extremely blessed during this experience, so blessed.

My angel mother did leave last Thursday, thank you for everyone who has checked to see how I'm doing.  Throughout this entire experience, mom has reminded me to be thankful.  "Thank the Lord for every good thing.  Thank Him for every hard thing, everything that's difficult, for the pain, for all the growth."  She has encouraged me to be thankful for everything, no matter what it is.  She has found incredible peace and happiness doing this.  I feel so much awe for who she is and feel grateful for her example of humility and gratitude.  I will be grateful every day of my life that she is my mother, and that I am her daughter.  Through this experience, I have leaned on her so much.  I, the independent one, has had to admit my need of others :), especially of her and my Heavenly Father, and I thank Him that He gave me this experience, the opportunity to spend this time with her.  She is an angel of peace.

As things geared up for her leaving, I started feeling anxious.  I felt like I'd just had a child or something ;) and was so emotional, not wanting her to leave.  She encouraged me to thank the Lord for the difficult feelings I felt.  We looked at having her stay longer, but we both prayed about it and felt good about her departure date.  We have some sweet memories of that last night she was here as I read to her from "The Continuous Atonement" by Brad Wilcox, and she made soups, drinks and Sauer Kraut for me :), all the while following along almost better than me to the book!  She's amazing.  When she left, it did feel quiet, I missed her terribly, and yet I knew it was okay.  I slept for a good while and then let myself feel the peace the Lord gave me as I took care of things around the house.  Since she left, my aunt and many others have been so so helpful in giving rides and helping me if I've needed anything.  I've had wonderful, thoughtful visitors, and even a sweet experience with the Sacrament being brought to me.  Where I felt unable to go forward without my mother, the Lord has picked me up and carried me.  He amazes me.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Day 12 - The Sun is Out

Have you ever listened to the rain at night and felt so comforted?  Something about that rain, the freshness, that sound of washing old things out and clearing the ground for new life really makes my life when I hear it :)  Day 8 and 9 were toughies, I felt I could hardly move.  It didn't make sense to me til I called the doctor and they said that sometimes with the removal of lymph nodes, even when only 3 are taken, as in my case, your arm and side can really feel it.  That was my experience and I felt wiped out.  I'm not sure why that happened after taking out the drains, but I'm actually so glad I felt that way because when the rain fell Friday night, it felt more like a friend than any rainfall I remember.

The next morning, it was fresh, sunny and my body seemed to work a bit better.  I could not help feeling so very grateful.  Sometimes we need a little pain and lack of mobility :) to help us appreciate how good we have it.  Since Saturday, I've been trying to pace myself better, and though I still need naps, and still have to take it pretty slow, my arm and side are getting a lot more manageable :)  A dear friend shared the following with me and with her permission I'm sharing it here because it is such a good reminder:

"It's important to take time to slow down and enjoy the journey.  I tend to fill up all my time and then it's easy to feel exhausted - physically and emotionally - which kind of takes the joy of of things.  Then I don't think straight, I'm more irritable, and I tend to make more mistakes or hurt myself.  I think it's not so much about the quantity of things I do, but more about the quality of who I am that matters most."

So good.  As an update, yes, healing is going well, and wait for it...I took a real shower on Saturday   Oh ya!  Mom helped me and it was so nice to be clean!  I had a real look, straight on, at the surgery site. It was my first time really seeing it, where as before I'd just look down at it when we were changing the dressings.  It looks great, it also looks different and a little funny, but mother reminded me to smile and remember how blessed I am, and she's so right.  This is my new life and though emotionally that has been tough at times, I feel the most difficult parts are behind me.  I am super blessed.

Mom and I were talking about his combined with my love of women and of people all over the glove - in some ways, she felt like this might be an invaluable experience so that I can better understand, even in some small ways, the many types of loss that so many women have and will go through.  They may be able to better trust me because of my experience.  Her thought rings true within me.  I feel grateful for the Lord's healing hand on me, my ability to feel aches and pains, and to hopefully use this experience to lift others on some future day, hopefully soon.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

One Week - Day 8

This post is only really for myself - I just can't believe it has been an entire week already.  So much healing has occurred, and yet, today, I spent most of the day in bed.  And that's okay, I hear.  It's impressive to me how much one little girl can sleep or rest or not do much of anything and still be tired and wear out quickly!  Funny.  But it's good for me, humbling, and reminds me of my mortality...and that last week at this time, I had a special experience and said hello to a new life :)

Again, thanks for everyone's love and support.  You've all been with me.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Day 7 - Pathology Report & the Drains

"All good news!"

Those were Dr. Loyd's comments as she shared the beautiful news of my pathology report this week. Before I continue, I'd like to say a word on faith and prayer - I truly believe that regardless of the outcome, all of our prayers have been heard and answered.  I've felt your faith lift me and help me do what I did not feel I could do on my own. Somehow, I have been given the gift of an amazing outcome and miraculous healing.  There are others with great prayers and faith who've had different outcomes, and I hope that I would and will be just as grateful and believing should a more difficult situation have been or become my path someday.

Pathology Report
* Lymph Nodes:  Confirmed clean!  All three that were biopsied and removed came back clean.  This means no chemo, and no spreading of cancer to other areas.  Still makes me a bit emotional.

* Top Region of Breast:  Clean also!  The surgery was a skin-sparing, nipple-sparing single mastectomy...and a few other words I don't remember, but this area had two strikes against it for me keeping it, but I just felt like it would be okay to at least try to keep as much of the outside as possible.  It is such a gift to be able to keep so much.

* Type:  All DCIS, none invasive, huge blessing.  From the MRI, the doctors had thought there was a good bit that might be invasive, so this was a great discovery for everyone, again a gift of no chemo.

* Size:  According to Dr. Loyd, because there was such a large amount and spread of the cell growth, from the skin to the chest wall, it looks like radiation will be recommended.  She is taking my case to a panel of doctors next week who will all examine it and determine what needs to be done.  If radiation is the recommendation, we'll look at our options and make the best choice possible.

Those came out last minute this evening.  It's so great to have them out - didn't realize how much I'd like that!  Dr. Self did such a great job taking them out.  I wish I could show you all, on a biological and anatomical level, how everything is looking...but of course, this is a bit more personal an area than say, my hand, so I won't be doing that, but seriously, the Lord is healing this area so beautifully.  There is no way to sing His praises enough.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Update as Day 4 Comes to a Close

Dear Family and Friends,

Thank you so very much for the incredible love you've showed me.  Just typing that brings tears to my eyes as this 4th day finishes.  I've been so in awe of the outpouring and incredible showering of love, prayers, and amazing support.  There are no words for how grateful I feel.

These past few days feel like a blur.

Wednesday evening, my bishopric gave me a blessing with mom, megs, and the relief society presidency present.  Though I'd felt great peace and calm earlier in the week, I again felt overwhelmed and under-prepared for the road I was about to take.  As the bishopric started the blessing, so did the calm, peaceful feelings I needed.  That night, as we got everything ready, I felt very taken care of, very supported, and I felt courage to take that road again, to alter my journey in the best way possible, guided by the best navigators (doctors) possible.

Thursday began in an almost dreamy, surreal way for me, at 4:15am.  Ben had spent several nights writing me a piano piece, and somehow I knew instinctively to check my email where I read his description and listened to his piece.  I felt the presence of additional family with me, as we headed to the hospital.  The next few hours happened so fast.  Favorite moments include me doing push-ups :) in the patient registration area while 5 hospital staff worked to get me registered on their new computer system, pastoral care praying with us, chilling and laughing with mom, megs, and Tim while we waited for the next nurse to assist us.  A special moment came in radiology after the nuclear injection when I lay there by myself, looking up into my reflection in the ceiling above me, my chest open, and praying to the Lord, thanking Him for the beautiful gift of having that left side for 33 years, for all that it blessed me with, and feeling from Him that it was okay to say thank you and goodbye.  Looking up at her and doing so, I felt so deeply an appreciation and gratitude for my body in a way I don't know that I've ever felt.

In pre-op there were hugs from everyone and good luck wishes, great positive, energetic vibes from my doctors (Dr. Loyd, Dr. Self, and Dr. Chun), I was marked up so that the procedure would occur properly, then some anesthesia, and I was out.  Next thing I knew, it was just like everyone has said, I was in recovery.  A beautiful, sweet paster came and prayed with me at the perfect time, right as I was missing my family, in pain before the morphine took affect.  She breathed with me and was so encouraging.  Dr. Self came in and told me the words that I will always remember, that my lymph nodes looked clean, most likely no chemo, no radiation.  How am I so blessed?

Visitors came throughout that day and the next bringing so much sunshine to lighten my room.  Mom helped me with the washroom, Tim, megs, and mom coordinated with everyone who wanted to know how I was doing, and they kept track of the information I needed to know.  I couldn't have been more taken care of.  The nurses, nurses aids, and hospital staff were amazing to me.  My bedroom now is a garden full of flowers.  Thank you to everyone!!  I feel so spoiled!  Day 2 was my birthday, and felt like such a great day, a beautiful day.  I was most likely clear of cancer and moving in a new direction.  I even ate a piece of chocolate birthday cake! So good :)

It's not possible to express how grateful I am for the experience of the past few days, the first two days were uniquely special to me.  It felt like I was being carried by angels.  The Lord's presence, assistance, and strength felt so tangible, I pray I never forget that, never stop thanking Him.  The outpouring of love from all of you was more beautiful than I will ever be able to express.  You lifted me, and brought me the sun.  As I move forward, it's obvious to me that pacing myself is critical for real healing to occur...just like everyone keeps telling me :).  I felt pretty weak for parts of yesterday and a good part of today, but it's okay.  That helps me appreciate times like tonight when my energy increased.

Mom keeps serving amazing meals, and megs is the best little nurse to me, remembering when I need to take things and emptying my drains.  Tomorrow, we'll hear the pathology report and will know for certain about the nodes and the other part of my anatomy for which we're waiting to hear.  I feel grateful, how can I feel anything but in awe of the Lord and His matchless power in my life?  He holds me in His hand, His angels fill my room, and I am protected, taken care of.  He is the source of any strength in me, and I pray I will lift my eyes to Him in sincere gratitude, no matter what bends lie in the road before me.

"Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.  For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light."
Matthew 11: 28-30

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Details - Thursday is a comin'

Many of you have asked for some of the details below, so I hope placing them here helps.  THANK YOU for caring about me, man, I can't say that enough.  I feel your love and support so strongly it makes me a little a positive way :)  Thank you so so much.

~Love Flows~

Surgery Date: Thursday, February 28th
Surgery Time: Check-in time > 6:00am, Surgery about 8 or 9am-ish or earlier
Hospital: St. Mark's Hospital, 5th Floor, Women's Center (I believe)
Length of Stay: 1-2 days, but you never know, I may be good enough to go home that first night

Thank you for those who have wondered if you can come and visit.  I'd love to see anyone who comes to the hospital or my place - my only concern is that I won't get to see you because I might be really out of it...which could be fun ;), but if you would like to come, I would love to see you. At the same time, please do not feel by any means that you should come if you were not planning on it or hoping to.  Thank you again, everyone!  Loves to you!

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Thank You :)

Dear Family and Friends,

Thank you to each of you for your prayers, fasting and faith.  Today, I felt it all so tangibly; I felt unafraid, supported, loved, and I knew again that everything would be okay.  It was so refreshing to feel like me, my happy, free self.  At points when people at church asked me how I was doing, or wished me luck with this week, I found myself saying, thanks, it's going to be great! I was excited about it or something ;).  Funny, but I really felt so good.  Your love and support, your faith and prayers have literally strengthened me, and I truly feel more able to go forward.  The Lord is so so good to us, and that feels never more true to me than today.

Loves to each of you :)


My angel mother, who has researched so much for me throughout this journey, found this extremely helpful blog.  Britta McKenna was also diagnosed with DCIS and shares her journey, things she experienced, felt, and sources of information she discovered.  The most helpful shares for me this week are her two pages on mastectomy preparation.  In case it is of interest to you and also so I have a place saver here on my blog :), I'm including them below.  Man, I'm so grateful for those who have been willing to share of their experience.  Reading her prep lists has really helped me.

* Top Ten Pre-Mastectomy
* Top Ten Post Mastectomy 

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Diagnosis: DCIS

Really quick - my apologies for not explaining my little health situation for anyone who has read these few posts without having that information.  After doctor visits, exams, etc. during July and August last year, and after an MRI in August and a biopsy through MRI in September, I was diagnosed with a type of breast cancer called ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS).

Honestly, I'd be happy to explain more about that if people are just might take me some time to respond, but I will.  Whereas DCIS is usually in one or two, maybe a couple of ducts, mine seems to be wide-spread and there has been concern that there may be other stuff going on as well.  Who knows, but we'll find out soon.  Mine was thankfully found early, it's quite likely that it has not spread to the lymph nodes, and if removed it has an extremely high likelihood of being cured.  Hope that helps :)

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Surgery Date

Dear ones -

So...I thought I'd be great at updating this lovely blog...but I have not done so...that's pretty much how blogging has gone for me for years, no?  ;)  Things I'm planning on including here include my morning routine, the healthy foods, supplements, and teas that have been making it into my body, as well as great books and other resources mom and I have drawn from to determine what I've been doing for the last many months, and my feelings and reflections throughout the experience.

Those will get on here at some point, but I do want to let you all know that after receiving results back from my MRI at Christmastime and seeing that things hadn't improved but were slightly progressing, and after a lot of prayer, fasting, time in the temple and time to myself, I decided to have the recommended surgery (mastectomy).  Single or double?  I'm going for single.  I'll lose these one at a time if I'm going to lose them both, but hopefully I won't :D.

Do I feel 100% confident in this choice?  No, but I feel there have been times of peace after a blessing, after a conversation with someone which have helped me feel that "whatever happens, it will be okay."  Maybe this means that just like many have said to me, with whatever I choose, things will be okay.  Doubt not, fear not.  Trusting and letting go of fear has been such a lesson my mother and the Lord have been teaching me...I'm still in the heart and depth of this lesson, but I can tell that it is a significant part of this journey for me. 

The surgery date will be February 28th.  My mother and Megan will be here, so I'll be in good hands.  There are other details, but I'll leave off for now.

Thank you all for your prayers, for your love, your faith and your goodness to me.  As mom continually reminds me, the Lord is helping me, He is there and He loves me as He loves all His children.  This is a great opportunity to learn and I hope the Lord will mercifully "grow me" as I move forward.  He is light.

Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.  In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths.
Proverbs 3:5-6

A moment of happy smiles and peace