Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Catching my breath

Between work, my daily radiation treatment, therapy appointments and my overall fatigue... I find it hard to squeeze time to write a blog post! So I do apologize once again for my recent silence, but I assure you that as a general rule of thumb, no news is (mostly) good news!

This time that good news happens to be that I have not had any hiccups with my treatment this go 'round! Sounds like a small victory, which it is, but I'm totally psyched to not run into any further trouble so far.

And better news yet than that? This is my LAST week of radiation treatment! Yeeeaaah!

Since I'm wrapping up with this whole chapter of my cancer journey, I figured some of you might be interested to see where and what gives me my treatment!

First up is the machine that administered my first 31 doses of radiation. I'd lie down on the table, put my right arm up in that cup-looking-thingy and the machine would spin around me. It was a bit on the older side and rather clunky, so with the approval of my radiation tech, I named it Bessie.

My rads tech Brian photobombed this pic of Bessie for me.

Now that I'm receiving the "boost" portion of my treatment, I've graduated to a different room and machine! It's really more of the same with the exception of that cube extension. See the cut out on it? That's my tailor made cookie cut out to seclude the radiation to the scar on my right breast.

Kinda nifty right? Since this machine is newer, quieter and slightly sleeker while still being on the large side... I decided to name her Dolores. I have my reasons. :D

I didn't ask Brian to photobomb this time. :P

So I'll finally be able to sort of feel like less of a cancer patient when I'm done with this treatment.

I know I'll still have medical obligations to maintain, but it will be far less demanding. I will no longer have a DAILY reminder of everything. That by itself exhausts me. It's not like I'm going to forget I had cancer. So having to go to the parking lot of the hospital where I had my breasts removed and then receive my radiation at a place where I am once again the youngest person being treated Monday through Friday? Yeah, not so bueno! A little tough to swallow some days.

And I get so upset with myself over my fatigue. Thankfully, one of my therapists (I'll get back to that!) used an analogy to help me understand and cope with it better though.

She said I need to think of an infant. Babies sleep and they sleep A LOT. Why? Because they're growing right? This means they have a bazillion cells dividing and multiplying. Cancer patients who have had the typical combo of chemo and radiation have had many cells, both good and hopefully mostly bad, destroyed. So know what happens next? We gotta regrow those suckers! Makes sense, but I never thought of it that way.

I try to have more patience with my poor tired body as a result now. :)

Back to the talk of therapy! Haha. Well, I've been seeing my counselor individually for about a couple months now. It's beneficial, but I'm hoping to get even more out of it with time. Now, Jason and I started marriage counseling a few weeks ago. My therapist recommended the person we're seeing and she's fabulous. Looking forward to all the positivity that will come from the help we're/I am getting.

Speaking of Jason and I as a couple! Today marks the day we started dating, which was six years ago. We've been together ever since! Pretty unbelievable. Seems like so much shorter and so much longer all at the same time. I don't mention often enough how blessed and grateful I am for him. It's been a really trying year + for us both individually and together. But you know what? We've weathered the storm and we're still very much in love. I feel like we can only grow in our marriage even more from here on out. 

God saw us through some very heavy stuff. Now we need to realize that the worst is behind us. Time to get back to enjoying our life together. And time, especially, to celebrate! 

On top of being together for 6 years, our 3rd wedding anniversary is a week from today! That plus my final radiation treatment? I think that calls for some celebration! <3 

May 8, 2010 - right after we got hitched! <3

Anyway, I just want to thank my sweet sweet husband for standing beside me. For continuing to love me and continuing to find me beautiful, despite what I think of myself. For caring for me when I couldn't care for myself. For taking on the burden of this journey and not running away. For supporting me in so many ways even when it was hard for him to support himself.

I love you Jason. I thank the Lord for you every day and I will for the rest of my days.

Let's see... other than lots of lurve and work and an end to treatment being within sight? Planning and trying to train a bit for the Susan G. Komen 3 Day! Got my shoes for the walk! Pricey, but well worth it if it saves me from injury. They are insanely comfy. 

I went to this walking/running specialty store called Roadrunner Sports to get them. They're a partner with Susan G. Komen for the events so I thought it'd be a good place to start. They did this whole crazy assessment process where they recorded my feet as I walked on a treadmill, measured my feet, etc. etc.

Apparently I have very high arches and over pronate on my right foot. Who knew? I sure as hell didn't. Lol! However, I'm glad to know before I walk 60 miles over the course of three 

My hair is growing in nicely. It is NOT nice to tame though. These curls are seriously cray-cray. I can't decide if I want to bear with it and allow it to grow or whether to cut it into some amazeballs, kick ass short style. 

All I will say is thank God for thick stretchy cloth headbands and hair products to soothe my twisty locks of pure insanity. Regardless, here is my current hair progression:

This is what a barista-mode-Anj looks like.

Aaaand that does it for now folks! I shall leave you all with my song of the moment.

God bless you all. I hope you have a wonderful day/week/month ahead of you. Always always remember to enjoy every minute of it. Yes, even weekdays and chores and other obligations. ;) They're all blessings you know, even if not in the most obvious of ways.

"Many are the plans in a man's heart, but it is the Lord's purpose that prevails"  Proverbs 19:21