Friday, November 30, 2012

My "Two-Year" Re-Birthday

It seems I have been looking forward to this day for so long and it's finally here.  From what I'm told, it's quite a monumental day for people of the transplant community.  I've been told that for someone that has undergone a bone marrow stem-cell transplant, two years means that the possibility of a relapse significantly lessens.  I face this day with so many emotions, excitement and joy, is front and foremost. 

Even though I haven't received the results of my biopsy yet, I believe it's going to be good news!!!  I feel that I'm finally wanting to move forward.  In fact, this blog has helped me on that journey.  It's so therapeutic to put in writing and words the journey I have been on. The journey has been long with many struggles which have been balanced out with the many blessings of my current health and being able to be surrounded by my family and friends.  I know that there will be some struggles, but those are just minor compared to what it was.  I began emotionally feeling this momentous day, on and off, yesterday.  I found myself tearing up and even have found myself this morning doing the same thing.  But these tears are not of sadness, they are tears of gratitude, tears of hope, and tears of wonder.  I truly believe I have come full-circle and I am looking so forward to what's next. 

I'm moving forward with hopes of a brighter future and whatever obstacles may try to disrupt this journey, I know I will be able to conquer those obstacles that lie ahead.  I truly believe that those obstacles are what keep us grounded.  They keep us motivated, they keep us fighting for the better, and help us to appreciate the "gift of life" and all the splendid things it offers.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Sick, sick, sick

Well, its that time of year.  The time of year that everyone dreads.  Flu season!!!  Yes, everyone dreads it, but I think, the immune-suppressed dread it a little more.  What may take a normal healthy person to recover after a few days, takes probably twice as that for the immune-suppressed.  I have been laid out on the couch for at least 3 or 4 days.  I don't have much energy and I don't even have much of an appetite.  I think, in those few days that have passed, I have only had one meal per day.  It's not intentionally, just can't seem to have an appetite.  I called my doctor yesterday and now I'm on an antibiotic, so I'm feeling a bit more energetic.  Not much, but some, at least enough to want to eat.  I have been sustaining my body on Vitamin water, so at least I am getting some form of nutrition.

This is just one of many struggles after transplant.  Even though it will be two years, there still are complications.  It can be frustrating because you go for a period of time feeling as if your body and energy is returning back to normal than, yes, another WHAM, and your knocked back to feeling like crap.  I know sickness is a part of life and even the healthiest of people experience the common cold or flu.  But for me, and maybe other people who have experienced a long-term disease, it can be frustrating because it seems to take so much longer than the average person to recover. 

On FB, I have seen postings through bone marrow donor/survivor sites that patients have made stating their continued struggles after a year or two of transplant.  Many return to work, even full-time, and I wonder how they do it?  I know each person's experience is their own and no two people share the same experience when it comes to transplant, but sometimes I feel as though I'm lazy or weak.  I really try to motivate myself to move forward and keep fighting but its like my body doesn't want to follow me or try to catch up.  It can be most frustrating.  I wonder will I ever feel 100%???  As I have said in many other blogs, I am quite a stubborn person, and I won't give up, but geesh, give me a break. Haha haha  I just want to keep moving forward and not hit those rumble strips.  They're definitely rumple strips and not speed bumps.  Because speed bumps you have a longer length of time between and with rumple strips, you experience quick ups and downs, then things go smoothly for a brief period of time, and then before you know it, your hitting those rumble strips again.  So, that is where I am know.  I'm driving over those rumble strips and I'm looking forward to the smooth driving.  There is no way of knowing how long it will last.  But, hopefully, the period between rumble strips keeps getting further and further apart.

Here are a few tips for cold/flu season:

1. Optimize your Vitamin D - important for your immune system
2. Avoid Sugar- it cripples your immune system
3. Boost your immunity with "power" foods
4. Get enough sleep - don't be too tired to fight the buggers
5. Exercise regularly
6. Wash your hands - so it won't spread
7. Careful Sneezing - no hands, use a tissue or into your sleeve


Thursday, November 22, 2012

Very Thankful

I am so very THANKFUL for today.  Two years ago, I was spending my Thanksgiving in the hospital, prepping my body for my transplant.  Today, I sit here and reflect on that day.  My husband, children, mom and dad were in Pittsburgh with me. My Thanksgiving lunch was going to be served soon and, with my insistence, everyone went to the hospital cafeteria to eat their meal.  This was the first time in my life that I ate Thanksgiving alone.  I would lie if I didn't say it was a little lonely.  And if I had the choice of whether to experience that alone or with my family, I wouldn't change a thing.  It gave me time to think and reflect on the things that are truly important. And each Thanksgiving that I have celebrated with family and friends makes me appreciate the whole experience so much more.

Knowing what I know now regarding those days before transplant, I am truly BLESSED and THANKFUL for today.  At that time, I either chose to ignore or not really listen to what my preparation was about.  In order to prep my body for transplant, I was required to ingest a 5 day chemo regimen that was considered "lethal".  I really don't remember being told that this chemo was considered "lethal".  I found this out just this past summer.  I really didn't understand how important my fight for survival was.  Sometimes I truly believe "ignorance is bliss".  The less I knew, the better.  Many people, from family, friends, doctors, etc, tell me how much they admire me for my fight.  I have a hard time understanding that, because yes, I had bad days and even now, I have them, I truly don't see the recognition.  The transplant seemed so much easier to me then my first initial diagnosis and months of chemo treatment.   Before my relapse and toward the end of several months of chemo treatment, that is when I wanted to give up.  That's when I felt the most weak and losing my desire to live.  My transplant seemed so much easier.  I'm sure anyone who has had such an experience may feel differently, but for me, that's the reality.

So, as I sit here, this Thanksgiving Day of 2012, I not only reflect, on the past two years, days prior to transplant, but several months before during those wicked months of chemotherapy.  I am so THANKFUL to be here, in this moment, living and breathing, being a wife and mother, a daughter, sister, aunt, cousin and friend. 

Not only am I THANKFUL for my own existence, but I'm extremely "THANKFUL" for such a great SUPPORT network of FAMILY AND FRIENDS!!!  HAPPY THANKSGIVING TO ALL OF YOU WITH MUCH LOVE!!!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

More of Life's Whispers

So many things have been going on in my life lately.  My "two-year" re-birthday is just a few days away.  And I have been listening and paying attention to the things that we tend to, unintentionally, ignore. 

Lately, on television, there have been a lot in the news about adults and children with Leukemia and bone marrow stem-cell transplants.  I have been thinking a lot about this, and maybe it's due to my two year anniversary being so close. 

I'm really not even sure what to say or where to begin to express how I'm feeling.  I guess I could describe it as a mix of many different emotions.  From being happy and elated, to questioning and wonder, to being sad and sometimes angry, to going back to being happy and shedding tears of joy.  It's like I feel myself moving forward and something is mentioned about what someone else is going through and it brings it all back.  I begin to experience all those emotions that I went through during those difficult days.  Whatever story is being told on the television, I'm sitting there, watching, and knowing exactly what that person or child is going through.  I can relate to what there experience is.  It saddens me that someone I don't even know is suffering in a similar way.  I sit there and wonder whether they're feeling the same way I had felt.  And during that news broadcast, my thoughts are confirmed.  Yes, they are feeling the same way.

 Robin Roberts, from Good Morning America, had a recent hospitalization after her bone marrow stem-cell transplant, and she had posted on FB how she felt.  She stated about the re-hospitalization taking "an emotional toll" on her.  And I understood what she meant.  I really hope that is her last re-hospitalization and she continues to grow stronger everyday.  I just felt the need to reach out to her and comfort her and let her know she isn't alone in how she is feeling.  It can be frustrating when you feel your making progress than WHAM, you take some steps back.  But that's all about the healing, process, and recovery. 

On the TODAY Show, they had a news piece about a four-year old boy who has undergone FOUR bone marrow stem-cell transplants in 18 months!!!  This little guys "will to live" is AMAZING!!!  During the interview, he stated the times he felt death was near but that he wasn't ready.  He said something similar to knowing it was so close but he just couldn't do it.  And, as I was sitting there watching, and I knew exactly what he was saying.  I experienced that at least, twice.

I can't even describe to you what it feels like when suffering from a life-threatening disease, how easy it is, to just give in and answer those knocks of death, at your life's door.  Sometimes, it feels so easy.  You think, "what if's" and "just maybe's".  At times, it seems like a much better and easier solution.  But when it finally came down to deciding, I wasn't ready.  There were so many other reasons to stay and fight.  Initially, it was for my children and husband, my family and friends.  But, it became even more than that.  It has become so much more.  I feel the need to express exactly what I experienced, what I thought and felt, and even what I am currently going through.  I know I'm just one voice in a crowd of many.  And many of our experiences are different just like each of the one's I mentioned above.  But even though our experiences are different, I believe we feel the same and question the same things.  I want to be a voice and educate others by sharing my experience. 

So with all of these news broadcasts regarding similar situations I have experienced, it makes me believe they are one of life's whispers.  Whispers for me to express my thoughts, to write about my experience and journey.  It's also a reminder, not to be too comfortable or complacent.  It's a reminder to embrace life, not take things for granted and know that its not necessarily a "happily ever after"...just a "happily right now".  :-)

Just a Reminder...

A Reminder to those couples affected by cancer or some other life-threatening disease.
And to my Husband...Thank You...and I Love You!!!
A friend of mine shared this on FB and it touched me so deeply and I'm so "thankful" for my Husband...
Life is too short....go home from work or wherever and share a simple gesture with the one u love!!!


“When I got home that night as my wife served dinner, I held her hand and said, I’ve got something to tell you. She sat down and ate quietly. Again I observed the hurt in her eyes.
Suddenly I didn’...
t know how to open my mouth. But I had to let her know what I was thinking. I want a divorce. I raised the topic calmly. She didn’t seem to be annoyed by my words, instead she asked me softly, why?

I avoided her question. This made her angry. She threw away the chopsticks and shouted at me, you are not a man! That night, we didn’t talk to each other. She was weeping. I knew she wanted to find out what had happened to our marriage. But I could hardly give her a satisfactory answer; she had lost my heart to Jane. I didn’t love her anymore. I just pitied her!

With a deep sense of guilt, I drafted a divorce agreement which stated that she could own our house, our car, and 30% stake of my company. She glanced at it and then tore it into pieces. The woman who had spent ten years of her life with me had become a stranger. I felt sorry for her wasted time, resources and energy but I could not take back what I had said for I loved Jane so dearly. Finally she cried loudly in front of me, which was what I had expected to see. To me her cry was actually a kind of release. The idea of divorce which had obsessed me for several weeks seemed to be firmer and clearer now.

The next day, I came back home very late and found her writing something at the table. I didn’t have supper but went straight to sleep and fell asleep very fast because I was tired after an eventful day with Jane. When I woke up, she was still there at the table writing. I just did not care so I turned over and was asleep again.

In the morning she presented her divorce conditions: she didn’t want anything from me, but needed a month’s notice before the divorce. She requested that in that one month we both struggle to live as normal a life as possible. Her reasons were simple: our son had his exams in a month’s time and she didn’t want to disrupt him with our broken marriage.

This was agreeable to me. But she had something more, she asked me to recall how I had carried her into out bridal room on our wedding day. She requested that every day for the month’s duration I carry her out of our bedroom to the front door ever morning. I thought she was going crazy. Just to make our last days together bearable I accepted her odd request.

I told Jane about my wife’s divorce conditions. . She laughed loudly and thought it was absurd. No matter what tricks she applies, she has to face the divorce, she said scornfully.

My wife and I hadn’t had any body contact since my divorce intention was explicitly expressed. So when I carried her out on the first day, we both appeared clumsy. Our son clapped behind us, daddy is holding mommy in his arms. His words brought me a sense of pain. From the bedroom to the sitting room, then to the door, I walked over ten meters with her in my arms. She closed her eyes and said softly; don’t tell our son about the divorce. I nodded, feeling somewhat upset. I put her down outside the door. She went to wait for the bus to work. I drove alone to the office.

On the second day, both of us acted much more easily. She leaned on my chest. I could smell the fragrance of her blouse. I realized that I hadn’t looked at this woman carefully for a long time. I realized she was not young any more. There were fine wrinkles on her face, her hair was graying! Our marriage had taken its toll on her. For a minute I wondered what I had done to her.

On the fourth day, when I lifted her up, I felt a sense of intimacy returning. This was the woman who had given ten years of her life to me. On the fifth and sixth day, I realized that our sense of intimacy was growing again. I didn’t tell Jane about this. It became easier to carry her as the month slipped by. Perhaps the everyday workout made me stronger.

She was choosing what to wear one morning. She tried on quite a few dresses but could not find a suitable one. Then she sighed, all my dresses have grown bigger. I suddenly realized that she had grown so thin, that was the reason why I could carry her more easily.

Suddenly it hit me… she had buried so much pain and bitterness in her heart. Subconsciously I reached out and touched her head.

Our son came in at the moment and said, Dad, it’s time to carry mom out. To him, seeing his father carrying his mother out had become an essential part of his life. My wife gestured to our son to come closer and hugged him tightly. I turned my face away because I was afraid I might change my mind at this last minute. I then held her in my arms, walking from the bedroom, through the sitting room, to the hallway. Her hand surrounded my neck softly and naturally. I held her body tightly; it was just like our wedding day.

But her much lighter weight made me sad. On the last day, when I held her in my arms I could hardly move a step. Our son had gone to school. I held her tightly and said, I hadn’t noticed that our life lacked intimacy. I drove to office…. jumped out of the car swiftly without locking the door. I was afraid any delay would make me change my mind…I walked upstairs. Jane opened the door and I said to her, Sorry, Jane, I do not want the divorce anymore.

She looked at me, astonished, and then touched my forehead. Do you have a fever? She said. I moved her hand off my head. Sorry, Jane, I said, I won’t divorce. My marriage life was boring probably because she and I didn’t value the details of our lives, not because we didn’t love each other anymore. Now I realize that since I carried her into my home on our wedding day I am supposed to hold her until death do us apart. Jane seemed to suddenly wake up. She gave me a loud slap and then slammed the door and burst into tears. I walked downstairs and drove away. At the floral shop on the way, I ordered a bouquet of flowers for my wife. The salesgirl asked me what to write on the card. I smiled and wrote, I’ll carry you out every morning until death do us apart.

That evening I arrived home, flowers in my hands, a smile on my face, I run up stairs, only to find my wife in the bed -dead. My wife had been fighting CANCER for months and I was so busy with Jane to even notice. She knew that she would die soon and she wanted to save me from the whatever negative reaction from our son, in case we push through with the divorce.— At least, in the eyes of our son—- I’m a loving husband….

The small details of your lives are what really matter in a relationship. It is not the mansion, the car, property, the money in the bank. These create an environment conducive for happiness but cannot give happiness in themselves.

So find time to be your spouse’s friend and do those little things for each other that build intimacy. Do have a real happy marriage!

If you don’t share this, nothing will happen to you.

If you do, you just might save a marriage. Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up. ♥

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

My...... "Aha Moment"

As I was sitting in the waiting room yesterday, waiting to be called for my bone marrow biopsy, I was typing a quick blog on my phone as to how I was feeling at that moment.  Nothing was fake about it.  It was all open and raw feelings.  And once my name was called, I was walking down the hallway to the dreaded room.  I realized as I was going through the motions, that these motions I have gone through several times before.  It took me back to that very first day.  It took me back to the day of my very first biopsy.  All the faces were the same.  The man performing the biopsy, his nurse assistant, and my husband and mom by my bedside.  I realized that as I was laying on the bed staring at the lighted ceiling that this is about more than just a biopsy.  It brought back all that I was thinking and "fearing" that very first day, it's a reminder of that very traumatic day.  So as I am laying there being prepped for the procedure, I was able to reflect on the "fears" I had then and the "fears" that I have now.

And I realized my "fear" of this ongoing repetition.  I was questioning when this will ever stop. Its a reminder of the worst days of my life.  It's a reminder of what I don't ever want to experience again.  The procedure is not the most comfortable, but it's actually how I feel afterwards that's the worse.  The tiredness and the nausea and vomiting.  Not being able to feel 100% after a couple of days which is mostly due to the medications that are given to me, minutes before the procedure.  And there is no question, I will not have the procedure done without medications.  Like I have said before, a bone marrow biopsy without medication is excruciating.

So when does this change?  When do these feeling and "fears" disappear?  Will it ever get easier? I surely hope so.  Now that I have been able to pinpoint the exact "fears" with the whole process, I can take each one of those and turn them into a positive and know that I am in a different place than I was three years ago.  Many things have changed and they all have been for the better.  So even knowing somethings seem familiar and the same, they're actually not.  My life has changed so much!!!  There are many positive changes.  I'm a healthier and, in a sense, a stronger person.  I have dealt with many speed bumps, hills, and the greatest of all, mountains.  And by climbing that biggest mountain, I can do and climb anything.  I will not let "fear" consume me.  "Fear" can be very toxic and if you allow "fear" to consume you, you will not succeed in what you what to conquer.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Anxiety...Out of Control

Sitting here waiting for my name to be called for my bone marrow biopsy...first I hear my name to have my blood drawn...then my name is called for my I'm waiting to go back to the room where the procedure will take place...Will it be like it was last time? Will I be sick for a couple of days? Why is my experience always so bad or difficult? Other people who have had bone marrow biopsies, do they feel the same? Have their experiences been just as traumatizing? If not, why is mine so different?
Right now, I feel as if every cell in my body is going 100 mph and ricocheting off one another. My hands are shaking slightly and I can't seem to stop tapping my foot.  I really tried coming into this with more of a positive mind set but the closer I got, the more reality settled in. I know that I'm in control and only I can control how I react but this is overcoming my control.  Will it ever get easier? I surely hope so!!! 
This is as real as it gets.  This is ow I'm feeling at this moment. I'm trying to breathe and control my emotions.  Will report back!!!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Family and Friends

As my bone marrow biopsy looms around the corner, I think of this past weekend.  There were two celebrations.  The first, and foremost, was the celebration of my husband's 40th Birthday.  I, and a few of his closest friends, planned a surprise birthday party.  It was really a great time and I think he had a really good time!!!  I was so happy to be able to celebrate this milestone with him. His celebration also became my celebration.  Even though this party was solely about my husband, I felt a celebration of myself too.

I was not only celebrating the life of my husband, but my life as well.  I was joyful in knowing that I was able to share this monumental birthday with him and with our family and friends.  There were times that night where I just stood off to the side and soaked it all in.  I looked out over all the people and thought how blessed we are to have such great family and friends.  It was so nice catching up and retelling stories with old friends.  I loved the laughing and the smiling til the point where your cheeks bones ache because your just so happy to "be". And sometimes there were tears.  But the tears began from a reflection of the negative times in our life that has now become positive and optimistic.  I really can't remember a time that I was more happy!!!  Having so many people around supporting my husband, and even me.

I will hang on to that euphoric feeling as I face my day on Tuesday.  I will remember all those smiles.  I will remember all those celebrations to help me through my biopsy.

I'm really not aware of anyone else's experience with bone marrow biopsies.  My experiences have not been great.  My first one was horrible and painful because I was not allowed any medication.  And all the ones following, even though I have been medicated, have not been great either.  The biopsies just have become very traumatic for me but I'm going to try my best this time to take a more positive approach.  I'm still going to have the medication, but I will be remembering those special women who will be praying for me that morning.  I will envision all those smiling faces from my husband's party and, know that, even though they were there for him, they are there for me too.  It gives a person such strength to be blessed with such wonderful family and friends!!! I will feed from that strength of support and face my day with less worry.  I truly believe there is "strength in numbers".  And that doesn't necessarily mean in the physical aspect of people joining together, but in the knowledge of knowing the number of people in my life waiting in the background with genuine support through the testings that I still need to have to monitor my transplant and remission.

Thank you everyone for your friendship and support!!!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

"I've never seen him. I've never heard his voice," she said, "but I'm just so excited to look into his eyes, to look into his soul, and tell him, 'Thank you.' - Erika Turner,

I saw this on the "Good Morning America" website and it had me thinking.  I became so emotional when Erika stated, she wanted to "look into his soul and tell him "thank you".  I actually cried because I would like that opportunity.  I am so excited that my two year anniversary is around the corner.  I'm so excited to know that I can make contact with my donor.  I'm excited to know so much more about her.  I want to know her likes, her dislikes, what are her favorite foods and her least favorite.  What does she look like?  How is she built?  Is she similar to me or is she very different?  I know that she is within a year or two of my age.  I know that she is European.  But that is all.  I have underwent many physical changes externally and internally, I wonder how much of it is because of just cancer and chemo itself and I wonder how much of it is because of the new blood, her blood, flowing through me.  It could be a combination of both, but I want to know and learn more.

As I stated in an earlier blog, most international donors are "expected" to be a donor in one form or another.  Where as, in the United States, its more of a matter of "choice".  So, will this affect her decision?  Will she think its just something you do and there really is no great act involved.  Will she rather just not know who or where she donated?  Will she choose that its better not knowing, because its something someone just does? Will it personalize too much for her?

The whole process of cancer and transplant has been a long journey and a journey that still is continuing.  There is much processing and healing and discovery. For me, part of that process and healing, would be corresponding with or meeting my donor.  It's just another step toward discovering this new version of me. 

It's a very personal experience, because it really isn't just your own body.  Its really just a vessel holding all new blood and life.  Sure much is the same, but to know that the blood that flows through your body is no longer yours.  Its someone else's and whatever their blood type, is yours now.  I'm thankful to know that hasn't changed.  My donor and I share the same blood type. So that is a comfort to me.  It helps make me feel more like the old me. But what are those differences and how do they affect me?

Being able to place a face to the donor, I think, will be more personal.  It will be easier to identify with and process, make it more complete. It could be a beginning to a whole new friendship/relationshop.  I'm very anxious to find out and all I can do is HOPE that she wants it just as much as I do.

Please check out link below regarding, Erika meeting her donor for the first time....

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Giving Thanks...

This is the time of year where many of us "give or show" what we are "thankful" for. 

Many of my friends on FB are listing what they are thankful for each day of this month.  I love that idea but I have trouble narrowing it down to a daily thing.  As you may have noticed with most of my blogs, I tend to become very emotional or passionate in my thoughts which leads to a lengthy blog.  Hahaha!!!  I laugh at that because that's just typical me.  My closest friends and family know that about me and just learn to go with the flow, which makes me so thankful to have them in my life!!!  I can't narrow it down to single individuals.  There are so many people I am thankful for, especially over these past few years.  Of course my closest family and my small intimate group of friends know how much I love and appreciate them and how grateful I am for them being a part of my life and being such a great support network for Isaac and the kids during this past few years.  I can't put into enough words how much that means to me and how deeply it has touched my heart.

But I also want to thank all those acquaintenances, all those old school friends, all those neighbors through out the years, past co-workers & bosses, friends of the family that have touched my life over the years, and even to the faceless names that have kept me on prayer lists and made donations to my family, to help ease the burdens that had fallen upon us.

It's so easy to get caught up in the negative things that happen in life.  Watching the TV news channels definitely confirms that statement.  The media definitely provides alot of the more dim things that occur in life.  Sure, they have a few news pieces that may lighten the spirit but mostly its involving assaults/attempted-murders, burglary, alcohol/drug-related activities, homicides, scams and war. Especially, now with the presidential campagin, there is so much slander it's really unbelievable.  We as a society, I think, tend to overlook the fact that there really are "good" people out there.  I'm so happy and grateful to know that I have seen the good.  I have received those selfless acts of love and support and of giving.

Which leads me to what I'm most thankful for.  I'm so thankful for my donor.  The selfless act of giving a portion of herself to allow another faceless, nameless person to have another chance at Life.  She gave me the chance to wake up and face another day with the sun shining on my face, or the rain and snow falling around me or the wind whispering its secrets in my ear.  She gave me the chance to watch my children sleeping peacefully in their beds or next to me in mine.  She gave me the chance to listen to their laughter, to dry their tears, to wrap them in my arms, for no apparent reason, but to just love.  She gave me the chance to be a wife and be a support to one of the most selfless men I know.  She gave me the chance to continue to be surrounded with amazing family and friends where we share birthdays, holidays, and other special occasions.  Obviously, I could go on and on, and its so hard to put into words, but the gift of "life" that she has given me, means everything to me. 

I am truly "grateful and thankful" and at peace with all that I have endured in my life, even the cancer.  The cancer has changed me and how I look at myself, my surroundings, and my reaction to those surroundings.  It has made truly appreciate this gift of "life" and not to take anything for granted.  We must appreciate all that we do have and embrace it.  It means to embrace the wealth we are given.  Wealth doesn't just involve money or materialistic things, it includes love, compassion and acceptance of the things around you.  It means embracing the things you do have and living life to the fullest with good will and without malice. 

So, this year, I am "thankful" for many things, but most of all, I am thankful for my donor.  If it weren't for her act of giving, I would not be here to enjoy this holiday season with my husband, children, family and friends!!! 

So, from across the seas, I say to my donor,..."I send my love and a huge "THANK YOU"!!!

Saturday, November 3, 2012


Wham!!!  It has hit me again!!!  I knew it was coming.  My past week and a half has been pretty busy.  A friend of mine is having me work one or two days for her, not only because she needs some temporary help, but also to help get me out of the house and get back into the "land of the living".  And, as much as I do appreciate this, it's definitely using a lot of energy.  I'm definitely not complaining because this is something I need to do.  I need to re-acclimate myself back into a more active lifestyle, not only for my sanity but for my health.  Research has shown that your body is more healthy when living a more active lifestyle than a sedentary lifestyle.  And, let's face it, my life at home was very sedentary and monotonous.  I can't even believe I'm going to say this, but I needed to slow down on the Kindle usage.  It got so bad that I was reading at least two or three books a day.   Yep, I know, what the heck???  Hahaha!!!  Can you believe that the past week I haven't read on my Kindle once.  I'm definitely going through withdrawal.

But, to get back to the point, I had stated in one of my earlier blogs about stressing over the next couple of weeks because of what is going on and how hectic its going to be.  And, I'm happy to say, I survived that first week.  I made it through.  Yes, I was tired, but I did survive it.  It will get better and I just need to condition my body and mind for a more active lifestyle.  But, I also need to know when to say when and know when to ask for help.

I finally broke down and allowed myself to ask for help around the house.  I live in a very old home with 10 foot ceilings and steep stairways.  Doing housework can be difficult and my house keeping is not what it used to be.  My mom graciously has helped me around the house which has relieved some of the burden from mine and Isaac's shoulders.  I am so thankful for that. I know life isn't going to end if the laundry isn't put away right at the moment its folded, and does it really matter if that "dust bunny" in the corner has made a few more friends?  Hahaha!!!  I know it will get done, at some point, and its not anything that is affecting our health, so what will be ...will be.

I have a few things to do today, but I am going to go at my pace and do a bit at a time and regain my strength for the weeks ahead. The boys are hunting and I'm going to enjoy this weekend with my baby girl, snuggling while watching tv!!!