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Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Update February 9, 2016

I had my sixth chemo session last Friday, now we wait until I get a CT scan on March 1 and see the doctor the same day to see what the next step will be. I pray the doctor will say “I’ll see you in three months”. The chemo will have done its job and I will be good to do a couple of trips.

This last series of chemo had their moments of making me feel lousy, but I always felt I would come out of it and overcome the side effects. The one side effect that is difficult to get rid of is the tiredness, the feeling of weakness. My legs feel weak, I attribute the feeling to not walking enough, I don’t like the cold and if it is windy forget it I don’t go out. Now we have a treadmill and I have forced myself to walk on it, it is in the garage, so the temps are in the forties, no matter the temp outside. I had the garage insulated when the house was built, best money I spent. So I just have to force myself to get out and walk. One more side effect is the effects of prednisone, I feel and look like the statue of Buddha, my face has never been this round, I don’t believe. But again, it is partially due to lack of exercise, so I am going to make a push to walk more.

I’ll let you read about it if you want. The interesting thing about it to me is it tracks how well I sleep and then compares the results with others of my age group, if they can find someone still alive. I use a CPAP and it is supposed to put you into deep sleep, this device is indicating I am not getting to that point. Of course the fact that I am up three to four times at night to go to the bathroom just might be a factor in all of this. But then the consequences of not getting up to go to the bathroom are more unappealing to me than the lack of some sleep. Besides I can fall asleep in my chair during the day if I want too.

When my grandmother was still alive I remember going to her house and it would be 100+ degrees in there, or so it seemed, and she would be wearing a sweater and have a blanket on her. I always thought it was strange, not any more. I don’t have the house at 100+ degrees but I do wear a sweater and at times put a blanket over my legs. As I have mentioned before a side effect of one of the drugs I take are hot flashes and when I get one of those I take off the sweater but as soon as the sensation stops I get cold and put the sweater back on. I had a friend tell me once the best relief she found from the hot flashes was a cold shower, I haven’t tried that yet.

Tomorrow is Ash Wednesday already, where does the time go. I know a lot of people will be walking around tomorrow with a black spot on their foreheads, to remind us “Remember that you are dust, and to dust you shall return.”. Here is a great explanation for the day, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ash_Wednesday.

I had a phone call yesterday from a social worker at the VA. She said the oncology clinic had given my name to her as a cancer survivor and she wanted to know if I would be interested in taking part in a cancer survivor support group. I told her sure and she will be sending me information on the meeting.

This got me to thinking, when does a person become a cancer survivor? Is it after you have X number of treatments and you are still here or is it a certain number of days or years. For me I know I will never be free of cancer unless the Good Lord cures me of it. I will always live with the cancer, I accept that, and believe if I am ever free of it then I will have witnessed a miracle.

We were at our son Daniel’s for my birthday last Sunday and to eat smoked ribs, they were very good. We also watched Super Bowl 50. We had a great time and thank you Daniel for cooking the ribs.

A few years ago Sarah and I were in Green Bay, Wisconsin for a wedding. The only camp ground we could find was about thirty minutes south of Green Bay. One day we were looking for something to do and I came across a notice about a Shrine dedicated to Mary the Mother of God. Well being raised Catholic I thought we should go see it. I put the address into the GPS and we headed out, the location is out in the middle of nowhere and without the GPS I would have been hard pressed to find it, but it was worth the trip. Even if you don’t believe in miracles the story surrounding the events of October 8, 1871 make interesting reading. There were two events that are interrelated the Peshtigo fire and the survival of individuals who took refuge in a church while the fire surrounded them. Here are two links to offer more information: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shrine_of_Our_Lady_of_Good_Help, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peshtigo,_Wisconsin.

Reading about fire and talking about hot flashes makes me drink more water than I have ever drank in my lifetime. I haven’t had the problem of dehydration lately and I always wondered how I ended up with it to begin with. I have switched over to just bottled water now because I can measure how much I drink. Some days I feel like if you poked me in the gut I would spray water at the point of the poke.

We have quite a bit of snow on the ground right now but next week is supposed to be warmer so with any luck we will get rid of ALL the snow and not get anymore. Ha-ha, I know we will get more snow and have been known to get it all the way into April, don’t remember any in May but I wouldn’t doubt that it could happened. I just keep telling myself I don’t have to go out in the cold weather and the snow unless it is absolutely necessary.

I have been reading a lot  of books these past few months. Sarah got me started on a series of books where one of the main “characters” is a cat. They are mysteries, not difficult reading and usually I haven’t figured out the killer until the author reveals it at the end. The books are an enjoyable read, the authors are Sofie Ryan and Sofie Kelly, interesting enough the same person writes under both names. The other is Miranda James.

I am also playing the stupid Candy Crush Saga, Soda and Jelly, I have to quite playing them because they are so frustrating. However, my sister is ahead of me in Jelly and I am trying to catch up with her. She plays it a lot more than me so I don’t know if that will ever happen.

Well that is enough for now.

Until later.

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