Thursday, December 30, 2010


The year is quickly coming to an end, I always tend to be a little reflective this time of year...looking forward to the next year....thinking about what might be ahead....things I might like to accomplish. Spent the day doing various errands...and oh yes, a doctor's appointment was included. The number of doctor's appointment's I have had in the last several months is mind boggling. These guys take up more of my free time than some of my friends do...if things don't change soon I'm going to have to include them on my next years Christmas card list! Although this sounds like a complaint, I am really thankful for the doctor's God has provided. The most recent appointment I had was for my eye and honestly, these doctors have been top notch! They were aggressive with their treatment, thorough in their followup and probably prevented me from losing vision in my eye. The infection is finally gone... doc wants me to continue with vancomycin four more days just to be sure, then continue with the steroid drops...for who knows how long....it will be for a couple more weeks at least. I would never had guessed this would have been such a slow process. January doesn't look to be much better for appointments, I already have four scheduled and I'm sure that is going to change...not for the good!! (I like these docs and all but, appointments consume a lot of my time) Our snow still hanging around, I am still enjoying it. Youngest son will be cooking tomorrow....part of our Christmas present....always a culinary treat.....I think we are getting baked Alaska for dessert....friends will be joining us...should be fun. These are the sweet days...the days when all seems right with the world....but  I know there are days when things aren't quite as sweet, harder days....but that does not change my standing with God, I am just as loved... just as cared for...he still has a purpose for my life...I am still justified by grace...still have that eternal hope. Harder days are just part of what this life is about sometimes....but because of Christ I have an eternal hope...I will dwell with him forever....those hard days will be done!!!

"For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future"  Jeremiah 29:11

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Your Word I Have Hid in my Heart

 Our snow "event" is over and it left us with over 14 inches, quite impressive. We were able to get out in it a little bit and  take some pictures. The snow closed just about everything down the next day....of course the stores opened at noon! It was fun while it lasted! Our Florida trip coming up soon...praying for warm weather, and a healthier me.The last week and half have been dotted with ER and Urgent Care visits.....most recently yesterday. It has been really hard on my husband...I can see it in his eyes ... so my prayer is that I will get well before we go and stay well the duration of the trip....I don't have a lot of other goals at this point for the trip, don't care anymore what we do, just want to enjoy the time with my husband.The other thing I had thought about today was when you are feeling bad physically you don't always feel like having a "quiet time" You are in survival mode....just trying to feel better. Having the Word stored in your heart is like buried treasure, so important during these times, treasures that you can pull out and feed your soul. Treasures that can help point you to the promises of God, that give you hope, comfort and a peace.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

It's Snowing!

Snow... what fun! Started snowing last night,  just in time for Christmas. The weather man is calling for continued snow all through the day. This snow makes me happy, I feel like a kid again. Best part is we don't have to be anywhere today (church was canceled because of the weather) So it's a pajama day, maybe drink hot cocoa, lounge by the fire, watch old movies.....day's like today are a gift! Especially after the last several days. I have been very emotional..... feel like I am losing my mind at times..... not thinking straight....grieving over how our lives's have changed etc....then it  occurred to me....is it possible.....could this be effects from the Arimidex?....or am I just looking for something to blame my roller coaster emotions on?  Just knowing that it might be effects of the drug has helped...it's like...ok.... I'm not going crazy! So we move forward.....taking one day at a time...looking to the Lord for strength....and now wisdom in how to proceed... (this drug may be the culprit in running my blood pressure so high as well) I will see my oncologist in January and we will have a discussion. Christmas sweet, enjoyed family, fun watching the excitement of the little ones.....Vacation soon....getting very excited.....My husband and I are looking forward to this time...a time to reconnect as a couple....relax....have fun together....try to remember what it was like before my cancer diagnosis.

"You, O Lord, keep my lamp burning; my God turns my darkness into light"  Psalm 18:28

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Letting Go

Looking a little bit more like Christmas at our house. The tree is up, not totally decorated but its up. We have no outside decorations this year. Have not baked my usual cookies or my toffee and decorations inside the house are minimal. There are several reasons for this, limited time due to travel, limited energy. Part of what I have been learning on this journey is how to let go of things...some things have been easy....house doesn't have to be perfectly clean... letting go of my expectations, agendas...not so easy...that continues to be a work in progress. Realized today we were letting some traditions go this year....adding to my "to do" list not helpful....I know this so I am willing to let them go for now. We continue to make time for the important things, like decorating a gingerbread house with the grand kids.(making memories) We are prioritizing, and that really is a good thing.
On another note appointment with plastic surgeon went well. He asked me if I wanted to talk about when the exchange surgery would be....ahh no.... (As Scarlett O'Hara would say, "I can't think about that right now. If I do I'll go crazy. I'll think about that tomorrow") I am still a few months out, his response to me was...that's fine we can think about it when you come back to see me in January. I did find out the pain with expander's perfectly normal...sorry...continue with Advil. Urinary tract is resolving, blood pressure back to normal, more med changes...last doctor appointment this week will be to see if corneal ulcer healed yet. Having to continue to deal with all this physical stuff helps me see my weakness, helps me realize my abilities have their limits....forces me to trust/lean on the Lord for my strength....so there has been good that is coming from all of this....it's all a matter of perspective.

"It is God who arms me with strength and makes my way perfect"  Psalm 18:32

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Are we There Yet?

Last couple of days have been difficult...I have been very emotional...major meltdown that was triggered by having to glaze a cake....don't even ask!  Finding myself in tears frequently for seemingly no reason....all someone needs to do is to ask how I am! (checked on reservations for a vacation event yesterday and  ended up in tears.... get the picture?) I see my plastic surgeon tomorrow and am anxious for my appointment, I continue to have pain from the expander's which seems to have gotten worse, not better, I really want to know what he has to say about the possible causes of the pain.  Blood pressure better but not sure I can continue with the medications the doctor had me try....experiencing some side effects...spent a couple hours at Urgent Care this morning before church because of symptoms I was having that felt like a urinary tract infection.....it was! Needless to say, feeling kind of crummy today. I know I have it better than many breast cancer patients do....I am not doing chemo...and I don't have to do radiation....and yet this still has been so hard. You know how kids are always asking "Are we there yet" when going on a long trip? I was just thinking, with some amusement, that today I feel like that kid in the back seat asking"Are we There Yet?"

Thursday, December 16, 2010

And the Beat Goes On

It's snowing today, kind of unusual for us, especially in December. Busy today despite the snow, two doctors appointments, yes they never seem to stop....and more challenges to deal with. I have had high blood pressure for almost twenty years but very well controlled, this morning it was 220/110....made my doctor stop in her tracks!! She took it again, then tried to figure out what in the world was going on, so meds added, (and taken before I left the office) dosages changed...buy a cuff, monitor blood pressure this weekend, call Monday.....and the beat goes on! Eye doctor in the afternoon, they were gracious enough to wait until I came in because they were closing early due to snow. Corneal ulcer is healing but I will need to continue with all the drops for another week....this was disappointing because I wanted to be able to finally stop the drops....four different drops four times a day...ok not that big of a deal, but I wanted to be done! Sometimes I just have to wonder what in the world is going on. We watch what we eat, exercise, do all the right things. Breast cancer.... ok fine, one out of eight women get breast cancer, the corneal ulcer...well things happen, the blood pressure....come on now!  The Lord reminding me that these bodies are perishing...you can do all the right things, doesn't change that fact. The Lord is continuing to lead me to just rest in him, trust in him...so that's where I am at right now..this is all part of his purposes.

"Therefore we do not lose heart, though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not what is seen, but what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal"  2 Corinthians 4:16-18

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Reminder to Self

Read something today that I needed to "hear" again. Taken from the book "When Life is Hard" by James Mcdonald
"Every trial I face is allowed by God for my ultimate good. For my good. Say it out loud...for my good. This truth is the rock our feet need to be on when the waves of satanic lies attempt to sweep us under. Say it again...this trial I am going through...is for my ultimate good.
This truth is the anchor that I can hold on to in the storm.This truth is the wind that fills my sails of hope.This truth is the light that guides my ship of faith safely into the harbor.Every trial I face is allowed by God for my ultimate good" I needed this reminder today

"And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him and who have been called according to his purpose"  Romans 8:28                 

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Change of Scenery

 Because my eye had improved at my last doctor visit I do not have to go back to see him for a week, this gave me the opportunity to travel with my husband to Washington DC. Thankful for the healing that is taking place in my eye and thankful that I am able to accompany my husband. I love DC, even though I have been here more times than I can count, there is always something new to learn, to explore. I hoping to use this time to build stamina a bit, get moving physically. We are due to go on vacation soon, will be significant walking involved and at this point I am not ready for it. So I will do what I can this week to prepare, but I also feel like the Lord is  prompting me to trust in him, rest in him, listen to him and to accept where he has me no matter what physical level I am at by that time. This has already been a struggle this week. I went back to work on Tuesday and because I could not start work on Monday as I had planned, I said I would work Thursday (to make up for the Monday I missed) no one asked me to do that, it was guilt I felt for being sick Monday. (misplaced guilt I might add)  Thursday was a day I was supposed to have used for preparing for DC trip, (if I had gotten the ok from eye doctor) so instead I worked all day, ran home finished packing and then we were on the road all evening. Exhausted can't even come close to how I felt. I basically let man's opinion of me dictate my decision to work a day I was supposed to be off. Old patterns resurface so quickly! That being said, I feel like the Lord is speaking to me on the need to be satisifed (content) where the he has me, let him direct my steps, decisions. I have always been strong physically  "I can do it myself", this continues to be difficult, (again does this sound like a recurring theme in my life) but realizing he can use my weakness.

"But he said to me, my grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness, therefore I will baost all the more gladly about my weakness, so that Christ power may rest on me" 2 Corinthians 12:9

Friday, December 10, 2010

Learning to Dance in the Rain

"Life isn't about waiting for the storm to end....it's about learning to dance in the rain" (author unknown) I love this quote! My life has been pretty "bumpy" these last few weeks and just when I thought there might be a light at the end of the tunnel, a new problem crops up. In my mind the storm we have been going through has been useful, God has shown us alot during this time and I have been so thankful for his faithfulness.....but I wanted the storm to be over...I was "done"...after all don't I "deserve" a break already (I do have a flair for the dramatic!) Then I heard this quote and it just stuck with me. I don't know when my storm will finally be over, and even when this ends there may be another around the corner. There is always going to be storms in this life, some never end....not in this life anyway. I don't want to be stuck where I am, not moving forward because I am waiting for the storm to end....it doesn't always. Instead I want to learn to dance in the rain....I have reason to.....because Christ died for me, I can look forward to eternal life with him.

"For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all"
2 Corinthians 4:17

Monday, December 6, 2010

Walking with the Lord

This seems kind of random but I heard a sermon today about walking with the Lord. I don't even remember who the preacher was but he was saying if you are walking you are making forward progress, you are going somewhere. So if you are walking with the Lord you should be making forward progress. I never really thought of it that way but I like the description. I don't want to be stuck, stagnant, my spiritual life not going anywhere. I have been blessed the last several weeks, illness has a way of keeping you close to the Lord, has a tendency to drown out distractions. Brings home what is really important, what is lasting. Makes you think more about eternal things. Helpful for forward progression. I am in a reflective mood tonight, remembering all the Lord has done during my illness...there has been good along with the difficult....I am so thankful. I read something today that really rung true in my own experience; 

"When we embrace our hardships we will find ourselves rejoicing in the parts that are good" from When Life is Hard by James McDonald

I am going back to work in the morning....my eye is responding to the latest antibiotic....so even though corneal ulcer is no better at least we are headed in the right direction. (another appointment on Thursday to check progress) I have been blessed with wonderful caring doctors, I have three that have been following me with the eye problem. One that has been calling me at home to see what the progress was, and how I was doing.....just amazing. Again the Lord reminding me to see the blessings in the trials. Forward progression!

"Draw near to God and he will draw near to you"  James 4:7

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Be Still

Well tomorrow was the day I was supposed to go back to work and because of the trouble with my eye I felt it best to delay my return, at least until after I see the eye doctor tomorrow. I had actually gotten to the point where I was ready, so this has been pretty frustrating. I think if there was any word that could describe my mental state the last few days it would be discouraged. I think it.s all about expectations...... my expectations are not being met....plain and simple! I expected to be at a certain point physically by this time. I could see the frustrations playing out in how my husband and I were relating to each other yesterday....not always pretty. I have been through so much, I saw first hand  God's faithfulness, his care for me.....the only thing that has changed is my situation...... he has not changed! Obviously I still have an agenda, I am not trusting God, still leaning on my own understanding. So what's next.....not really sure. Doctor should be able to tell me something tomorrow, will know if I will be able to go back to work anytime soon. The scripture the Lord keeps bringing to my memory is this...Be still and know that I am God....I need to stop fretting, worrying about what tomorrow will bring and just focus on what His "truths" are. Drawing nearer to Him

"Be still and know that I am God"  Psalm 46:10

Friday, December 3, 2010

Still not good news

Return appointment to the doctor today to see if my eye was any better and it is worse. When I woke up this morning my vision was pretty cloudy but it had improved and was feeling better, so I was surprised by the news. My heart sunk a bit...now what? The doctor added a third antibiotic drop, so I will be doing drops of some kind every hour.  My contacts are out, which is always a challenge for me because I am not good with glasses. Since I only need them for reading I am forever laying them down, then forgetting where I put them. I also tend to be hard on them, the current pair I am wearing are sitting crooked on my face because they are in the process of breaking. Road trip tomorrow to get a couple new pair! My prayer is this newest drop will work and that any vision loss I have will not be permanent, and that it not effect the other eye. I take my vision for granted, I have been thinking of all the things I use my eyes for.......praying this will resolve! I have a followup appointment on Monday to see if the eye is improved. Trusting in God, he has been faithful thru the breast cancer, I can trust that he has this under control as well, I can rest in him, rest in his promises

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Battle Weary

Today started out like a normal day...well almost. I started having trouble with my eye Tuesday night, Was experiencing searing pain in my eye any time it was exposed to light. Saw the eye doctor the next day and he told me it was a "divot" in my cornea (don't think divot is a medical term..but I understood what he was talking about) Spent the day yesterday wearing sunglasses sitting in a darkened room. I felt better this morning and proceeded to attend to the various errands and stops that I had to make. I went to Occupational Health and was cleared to go back to work Monday, then I stopped by the office, said hello to everyone and sat down and talked to my new boss. Discussed how things were going what I would be doing, how I was concerned about the pressures associated with my job and how I wasn't  going to be able to work with the intensity I had prior to surgery, no extra hours, different priorities, just now starting to really process all that has happened in the last several months......as I am talking I start tearing up...again...not sure if hormones or lack of or just a response to everything that has happened. The effect on my boss was one of compassion, she asked me what I wanted to do... will start me out slow, will partner me with someone....I think everything will be ok.
Next stop was my eye doctor, he wanted to take a look how te eye was progressing, and things were looking worse instead of better, they wanted me to go right over to see a specialist...today. As I was driving over to see this doctor I was feeling so discouraged. Things were starting to settle down,  falling into a routine again...now this. The doctor took some cultures, did some more scrapings, gave me more antibiotic drops and have another followup appointment tomorrow. So in addition to a corneal ulcer, there is some type of infection. My sight in that eye is blurry, praying it does not get worse.
I really never asked God "why me" when I was diagnosised with breast cancer. I struggled with fear and anxiety but never asked why I got cancer. I am weary from that battle and I did find my self asking why tonight, not about the cancer, but why do I have to deal with this eye issue, I was looking forward to some calm waters for a little while. I am thankful the pain is not as bad as it was Tuesday but I am discouraged tonight, praying that this respond to the medications and this will just be a little bump in the road. I am just tired, but I need to remember that I am not in this battle alone.