Hey all, Happy Thanksgiving! I hope you have had a wonderful day with family and friends. I have SO much to be thankful for this year. You all have made such a difference in my life and on this journey. Thank you for sharing your stories, providing encouragement, praying for me, sending me videos and texts (seriously, this is HUGE -- when you cannot leave your house for weeks on end, you start to feel very isolated) and just loving me through this time! I love you all more than you know!
So the big news is I HAVE OFFICIALLY COMPLETED AC CHEMO! Thank God!
With the completion of AC chemo comes the end of two other things:
And the best news of all: The AC chemo did what it was supposed to -- as of today, I cannot feel any tumor! Can I get an amen!?
Buuuuuuuut ... Even though I know this is just a phase and that the chemo is doing what is necessary, I have definitely been struggling emotionally. It is hard to see myself in the mirror and feel so completely not myself. I miss my hair. I miss wearing makeup. I miss my contacts. I miss getting dressed in real clothes.
On top of dealing with the regular side effects of chemo, I have been fighting a relentless cold for about a month. It has made me feel pretty miserable and I've been experiencing moments of despair more frequently.
The emotional toll has been wearing me down. I don't know why breast cancer had to be a part of my journey. I don't see the beginning and the end, and sometimes I get tripped up in the middle.
And that's where I feel like I've been stuck for the past month: the middle. I haven't been able to see past my immediate circumstances: I feel sick all the time, I hate the way I look, I miss my family, I miss my friends, I miss enjoying food, I miss going to Marshalls and target (come on, tell me you wouldn't miss these beautiful, happy places if you were me), I miss being able to sit down and read a book without having to reread each sentence five times because of chemo brain ... I miss normal life.
But today, I was given a gift. Two, actually.
Normally I would spend Thanksgiving Day at my parent's house with my husband, my sisters and their families, some of my aunts and uncles and cousins and my Sittou (grandmother). I would eat my favorite meal with my favorite people and be so happy! Unfortunately, that just wasn't in the cards for me this year. Ricky, who truly is the most amazing husband ever, decided he wanted to cook an entire thanksgiving meal for the two of us (complete with two desserts made from scratch). His enthusiasm and positive attitude helped me to put a new spin on this day and while I have missed being with my family, I have been so blessed by my husband.
My second gift is one I want to share with you. It's a song that I stumbled upon entitled Prophesy Your Promise by Bryan and Katie Torwalt.
This song met me right where I was at ... I was so encouraged. The line "you set a table in the middle of my war" absolutely shook me to my core. Think about that imagery. Who would do that? Only Someone who was certain of the outcome. He is certain of my future. I can rest in that.
While I don't expect the next 12 weeks to be all butterflies and sunshine, this did give me a much needed boost as I prepare to start the next leg of my journey.
Updates & Prayer Requests:
My eyes continue to hurt and water so I have not been able to wear my contacts. Again, this is a small thing in the grand scheme but it is frustrating. Please pray this side effect subsides.
Please pray this cold goes away!
I start Taxol Monday morning at 11:15 am. There are a couple of important things to be praying about with regards to Taxol.
My first two rounds of Taxol will be administered over a period of four hours. This is done because Taxol cannot be given in a traditional IV bag (Taxol would break down the plastic, which would then go into my body). The system of administration causes severe allergic reactions in about 30% of people. If I start to have a reaction, we will need to stop immediately.
Please pray that I do not have an allergic reaction.
Please pray that I do not get anxious thinking about the possibility of an allergic reaction and mistakenly think I am having a reaction (welcome to my brain).
Please pray for all of my blood counts to be where they need to be.
Please pray that these next twelve weeks are easier and that I can stay healthy and start to regain some of my strength.
Thank you for supporting me; we've made it through the first part of this journey! Remember, if you need my contact information, you can e-mail my sisters at firstname.lastname@example.org
All my love,
*Instagram and Facebook continue to be easier platforms for me to use to update people regularly. My Instagram name is @love.is.loudest21 and my Facebook page can be found at: https://www.facebook.com/loveisloudest21/ Be sure to check one or both of those places if you haven't heard from me in a while.
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