Today is my 59th birthday. Birthdays after being diagnosed with cancer seem to take on a new meaning. I look at all of the blessings I have received since my last birthday and know I have much to celebrate today. I celebrate that I have made it through so much this summer and am still ticking. LOL! I celebrate that I feel so loved by those who have been praying for me all along. I celebrate my family and friends....I am so blessed! I celebrate that Jesus has been right by my side and He is my Saviour! I celebrate life!
And yesterday I celebrated when Linda took me out to eat while we were in Greenwood for my doctor's appointment! We ate at the Cheesecake Factory and it was such a nice experience, as well as delicious food! We ate outside in the patio area and it was such a beautiful day. We both enjoyed it. Linda had never been there and I had only been there once, so it was nice to go some place different. Thank you so much for lunch Linda! I thoroughly enjoyed it!
And we topped it off with this White Chocolate Raspberry cheesecake. We both knew we were too full to eat one by ourself, so sharing worked out perfectly. And they even wrote a birthday message on the plate....cute, huh? Oh, and can you see the hair??? Look close! I went all natural yesterday...no wig...no hat! It is just so comfortable and I really don't feel "wierd" at all. And the hair is actually starting to show now! Even Larry can finally SEE it! Every time I'd look in the bathroom mirror I could see it and would go ask Larry..."do you see it?" and he'd always say NO! :=( But now he SEES!!! It will probably start growing faster now. Right now it's like little "peach fuzz" and I'm constantly taking my hand across it and feeling it. LOL!
Doctor appointments this week!
Well now it seems that my life is filled with doctor appointments, but that's ok with me. Each visit with a doctor just reaffirms that I'm going to be OK! And I am feeling better than I was last week....every day gets better! I still get tired, but my energy and motivation is returning! Yay me!
Tuesday I visited with Dr. Jackson. I still have my drains, so I wasn't expecting to be able to get my first "fill", so I was thrilled when he gave it to me! 50 cc on both sides...yay!!! It was a "piece of cake". The area is totally numb, so I didn't even feel the needle go into my skin. Once the needle is inserted through my skin into the tissue expander, he pushes the saline into the expanders thru a very large injector. If you'd like to see how this is done, here is an excellent video (nudity involved). No, this isn't me...LOL!
One down and six more to go! I go back to Dr. Jackson next week to hopefully get the drains out! I'm "so close", so he feels sure they can come out next week!
The "fills" will be done every two weeks, so they will take me through November and I HOPE to be able to have the "exchange surgery" in December. No guarantee, but a possibility!
Yesterday I visited Dr. Venkatash (I sure hope I spelled that right!). I just love all of my doctors! And I always love seeing the girls in his office. He went over my pathology report and even though he can't pronounce me "cured" yet, he did say I have a very good chance of being cured! He said no more chemo and no radiation...yay! Basically, all of the cancer has been removed, so to everyone's knowledge, I'm cancer-free at this time. There are no guarantees that it will never return and to be honest, I think that is a cancer survivor's biggest worry! But, the doctors watch you closely....I go back to him again in 3 months. So, I'm not going to worry about it! I totally trust my doctors and know they will be watching me closely and sitting around worrying about it will do me no good! So, as far as I'm concerned....I'm cancer free and there's no indication that any remains! Yay!
He gave me a prescription for Arimidex and I will take this every day for at least 5 years! It will help in preventing cancer cells to grow. It is not without side affects and he did inform me that I will have hot flashes and achiness. Oh joy! He did say once my body adjusts to the lessened hormones it will get better. I ask for prayers that I can tolerate this medication and it won't cause too many problems/side affects for me. Thanks for your faithfulness to pray for me. I'm thankful to have this medication available to me (this is one thing that won't help my sister with her kind of cancer) and Dr. Venkatash said they may have something new in 5 years!
Anastrozole is used alone or with other treatments, such as surgery or radiation, to treat early breast cancer in women who have experienced menopause (change of life; end of monthly menstrual periods). This medication is also used in women, who have experienced menopause, as a first treatment of breast cancer that has spread within the breast or to other areas of the body. This medication is also used to treat breast cancer in women whose breast cancer has worsened after taking tamoxifen (Nolvadex). Anastrozole is in a class of medications called nonsteroidal aromatase inhibitors. It works by decreasing the amount of estrogen the body makes. This can slow or stop the growth of many types of breast cancer cells that need estrogen to grow.
Anyway, I'm doing good! No complaints! While cancer sucks, there are also many blessings that come with it. One of the greatest blessings I've received on my journey is the people I have met that I otherwise never would have known. God can use any situation in your life and bless you.
So, Until next time.....absorb God's blessings whatever you are going through. He can bring blessings out of any situation!