But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings as Eagles; they shall run and not be weary; and they shall walk and not faint. Isaiah 40:31

Monday, June 18, 2012


I figured I better be updating this so you guys don't think I have fallen off the earth...lol!  I am doing well physically.....and depression is lifting.  I am enjoying life again!  :=)

Now, I won't lie...there are good days and bad days.  But, I'm not sure the bad days are even contributed to cancer.  And on my "bad days", I don't feel SICK....just TIRED!  But I struggled with tiredness before cancer....even worse than this (with the sleep apnea and other health problems).  So, I can deal with a "bad day" here and there and I have given myself permission to lay around on a tired day if that's what I want to do.  No guilt feelings!  I think the last visit to my oncologist was so good for me in that respect.  She told me it was ok....if I feel like laying around, then lay around....that my body has been through a lot.  And that was just with the cancer...not counting the physical and emotional turmoil I experienced the year before cancer.  So, now I lay around if that's how I feel...no guilt in doing so!  I think we, especially women, have a hard time doing that.  There is always something in the house needing our attention and if we have small children, it's even harder.   At least I'm in the "season of life" that I don't have small children to look after.

At least I don't feel my tiredness is a result or symptom of depression right now.  The new medicine is working...yay!  And even if I have a "bad day" here and there.....there are more GOOD DAYS!!!!

Physically, I feel great....except for some soreness under my left arm.  This is where my lymph nodes were taken out and in feeling under there, I feel something, but not really a knot.  I'm keeping an eye on it, but I'm thinking it might be scar tissue.  It really is very tender sometimes and I go to my surgeon in August and will be discussing it with her and letting her check it out.  If I feel I need for her to check it before then, I'll definately give her a call.

I went back to my plastic surgeon and we discussed some revisions he can do.  I'm more satisfied now with the results and could live with them, but there are a couple of areas I'd like him to work on improving.  So, he wants me to come back in Septemeber to discuss what we'll do...he said to take the summer off from surgery (which I planned to do!).  So I may be looking at some revision surgery in the Fall.

Next month....regular doctor appointment.  Then surgeon appointment in August.  Plastic surgeon in September.  Orthopedic surgeon (for my back) in October.  Then back to the oncologist in November.  lol....still visiting the doctors.  But, in my mind, that is a good thing....they are all keeping an eye on me.  So, I don't mind and the feeling of a good report carries me to the next appointment!   :=)  I'm one year out from my diagnosis, but not quite a year out from chemo (ended last June 22, so almost a year) and not quite a year out from my masectomy (July 26).  The first 3 years are the years that a reoccurence most frequently can occur...although they can occur at any time.  But, they watch you the closest the first 3 years.  My sister is 2 years out and I'm one year out.  Five years is a big mark in surviving breast cancer, so we will strive for that after we hit the 3 year mark!

I've been having some great times with friends and sisters!
If you haven't visited my Red Hat page yet, I encourage you to take a peek at all of the fun we've been having!!!

My sister and I were able to attend a Red Hat Woodstock 2012 event in our area where we met this most awesome entertainer from Branson, Missouri!  John Sager!  We are now groupies...lol!  He entertained about 50 of us ladies and made us all feel so special.  He has a great personality and sense of humor....as well as being a "cutie"!  LOL...did I say that?  Guess I ain't dead yet...LOL!

It was also wonderful meeting other Red Hatters from all over Indiana and a couple of other states.  I sure am hoping to join them for other events!  There is a Red Hat convention in September and I'm already making plans for it!  :=)  This Red Hatter thing has been a "God send" for me!  It helps me with my "living out loud" motto!

Nothing is more fun than going back to your "hippy days"!  Great music and great company!  And, just like the original Woodstock...great ceremonies!  :=)

Some even decided to burn their bras....just like in the "olden days"!  Heck, if I had realized they were going to do that, I had some "boulder holders" I sure could have donated to them.  LOL!

It was so much fun seeing some of their "flower child" outfits! 
I had fun wearing a long HALTER midi dress and headband.  Heck, "back then" I wore both midis and minis!  And lots of halters!  I'm enjoying wearing things I couldn't wear for a long time!  How do you like that feathered headband?  I've noticed more and more "hippy" syles coming back in and I love it!

And then for our June outing of the Sisterhood of the Travelling Hatters, we went to a great Farmhouse Cafe and Tea Room for lunch and looking around.....in BEAUTIFUL Brown County!

My kids say I'm going through my "second childhood".  Whatever....lol!  I do it because I CAN!  :=)  I try to be myself and not be so serious all the time.  Try it....it can be so liberating to just "let go" sometimes...lol!  Of course, you need friends, like Martha above, to humor you.  LOL!  I don't want to just sit around the house and grow old!

You can see more of the Farmhouse pictures on my Red Hat blog.....link is up at the top.  Check it out!

Last Friday, Martha and I enjoyed a day trip back to Nashville, Indiana.  I got my little purple dress that I had been drooling over for a week.  When we were leaving the Farmhouse Cafe on the Red Hatter event, we had to pass through Nashville.  Being so late, we had decided we didn't have much time to stop at the stores since it was close to their closing time. 
But, as we were driving through town, I spotted this dress on one of the shop porches and just had to stop and see how much it was!  They humored me...LOL!  Well, I vowed that I'd go back later and get it and I did!  This is what I'll be wearing to the next Red Hat event in July!!!!  I had been looking for a dress to dress up a bit for an event!  I love these kind of dresses.  Wasn't sure I could wear it, but it worked!  So, I will wear it because I CAN!!!  :=)  I think "some" might be thinking I'm trying to dress too young for a nearly 60 year old.  But, I'm "young at heart" and I don't want to dress old!  This is more how I used to dress when I was much, much younger and if I can do it now...why not?  It makes me happy to be able to do it again!  :=)  That's one thing I've learned through my cancer journey....do what makes me happy (as long as it isn't hurting anyone else, that is!  I have morals and standards, so going against them wouldn't make me happy.....so no worry there!)

Martha and I had a great lunch in Nashville.

....and enjoyed walking around amid the beauty of Nashville.....

...and occasionally resting!

And of course we enjoyed looking through the shops.  We probably only made it into 5 or 6 shops total and the funny thing is that all of the shops we went in were connected to each other (same family-different family member working or running them).  We had no idea...but we just were drawn to them.  Cute little boutiques that have become our favorites and we'll definately be going back!  They were all so friendly and they had great fashions, in both clothing and jewelry and other accessories!  We held back, though, and didn't buy them out. We paced ourselves...lol!  We realize we are lucky to live so close that we can go back often!  :=)  We also were shown how to turn a scarf into a vest.  It is such a cool idea!  I'll have to show you sometime! 
Update:  Scroll down for pictures!

And, hey, what you think of my new glasses?  Bifocals to be exact!  :=)  I've only had them for about a week and am still trying to get used to them.  I decided it was time to have my eyes checked after years of ignoring them and feeling blurry eyed.  Actually, they weren't too bad.  I used to wear glasses for near-sidedness....even had the restriction on my license.  But, now I'm not even near sided!  Huh, say what?  Does that correct itself?  Oh, and look at my hair!  I am wanting to cut it, especially on the sides and top....but not ready to get rid of my chemo curls yet.

  I normally have the STRAIGHTEST hair anyone could have, which was great in the 60's when everyone was ironing their hair to get it like mine...lol!  But now I'm enjoying the curls for a change.  So, for now I'm just pulling the top and sides back a bit.  It sure did grow fast from January, didnt it?

Here it is in January!  Eventually I want to cut it like this!  Just waiting to get tired of the curls or for them to get out of hand. 

Here I am in the pool with my sister, Kim, last year.....

And here we are THIS YEAR!  Oh, what a difference a year can make!  Just remember, if you find yourself ever having to go through this (hope not, but with 1 out of 8 being diagnosed, chances are that someone reading my blog may find themselves being diagnosed at some point in their life, unfortunately).  So, if that ever happens, I want my blog and pictures to give you HOPE.  It does get better....the hair does come back....and you do feel better again!  I show before and after pictures in hopes that it will encourage someone to "hang in there" and know that "it shall pass".

Yes, I've put on a "little weight"...ugh!  I've gained about 10 pounds back.  It fluctuates, so sometimes it drops.  I'm not happy about it, but don't stress too much over it.  I'm still smaller than I have been in years and with the medicine I'm taking, I'm not sure it wasn't inevitable.  One of the side affects of the Arimidex is weight gain.....so if this is the worse it gets, I'll be ok.  Gotta have the Arimidex to keep the cancer away (hopefully).  And, I guess I can't expect to keep losing weight like I did while I was on chemo and barely eating!  Truth is...I like to eat!  :=)  I mostly get it in my "tummy" and want to start some exercises that might help.  I do want to keep an eye on it!

This was me BEFORE cancer.....so you can see I was heavier.  I'm satisfied with smaller breasts....easier to fit into the clothes I like to wear!  :=)  Hard way to get them though!  It isn't a "boob job"....it's an amputation!

A friend shared this today on her facebook and I'd like to share it with all of you!  I included the link for you to the photo shots.  Warning:  contains nudity (how else can you show the real thing?)

Sharing this from a friend......Carin Henderson....
Google THE SCAR PROJECT..maybe then some of you will understand what we have truly been through...these women are beautiful! We are mothers, daughters, friends, wives...breast cancer is no...
t pink or cute....it is a disease that can kill! All of us may look fine under our clothes, but most of us look like the women in those pictures underneath...good thing beauty is only skin deep....http://www.thescarproject.org/gallery/

Now, until next time.....
Get out there and enjoy life...even if it means being a "kid" again!  Life is too short to be so serious all the time!

I got a picture today of the scarf tied into a vest...except today I wore it as a TOP!  Can't do that with every scarf, but this scarf is particlarly large.  So, I can wear it as a vest over a top...or just as a top!  I wear it both ways.  The layered look is so "in" right now, so it looks great over a top too!
Ain't I styling?  LOL!  Got my blingy belt at a garage sale...blingy belts are "in" too!  :=)

I'll sure be looking at scarves in a different light now!

And the back...I should have pulled it down a bit in the middle before the pic!  Yeah, I should NOT have had the bra on...or had a tank top on....but you get the idea.  I was just hanging around home and my sister stopped by and I had her to snap this to show you what a scarf tied just one time can make!  There are YouTube videos to show you how to do it, but if you need any help....just ask me!  The scarf has to be big enough, but doesn't have to be this big.  It just needs to be big enough to make armholes for you!  One simple knot....so easy!!!!  :=)