The Big C

A journey through Stage Four Cancer

A Little Rain Must Fall

They say into every life, a little rain must fall.  This past week my life has had some showers.  It started nicely enough on a beautiful day when my son offered to take me for a walk around the neighborhood.  On the walk, I saw some unusual flowers, and I asked him to stop.  The flowers were a dark purplish blue with some bright yellow.  They were very small, smaller than flowers people usually plant in their yard.  I thought it would make a nice picture for my blog, so I took out my ever trusty Olympus 820 Stylus and turned it on.  The LCD screen had black lines in it, and the edges of the picture were jagged.  I tried to take a picture anyway, and it came out much too dark.  Not ever being one to give up at a first, or even a twentieth try, I took another picture.  Still to dark.  Well, to make a long story short, the screen image continued to degrade, until my pictures all looked like they were an acid trip from the 1960’s.  The objects I took pictures of were not identifiable.  When I got home, I tried to find advice on the Internet, but instead found out that Olympus would charge $80 to look at my camera before fixing it.  Then they would fix my camera at about a charge of between $150 to $180, which is about the cost of the camera new.  Talk about being bummed!  As a last desperate attempt, I reset everything on the camera and …………………my camera began to work again, taking great pictures.  I thought I had dodged the bullet until I turned on my camera today to take a picture, and the screen was back to being a horror show!

So, I am upset.  I know that my dear husband is not going to want to purchase a new camera anytime soon.  Shouldn’t a camera last more than 6 years?  The lens and all the motors are great, but that doesn’t help the situation.  And I am lost without a camera.

Then, as you recall, I was too sick to go to my last doctor’s appointment.  Today I wasn’t too sick to go to the doctors, well until this afternoon when I found out that my camera is broken I wasn’t sick.  So I saw my oncologist today for the results of my CAT scan.  The results are good, everything looks stable.  The cancer hasn’t grown in my abdomen.  Oh! Here comes another shower!

Because, as I have mentioned before, I have pain in my left groin.  Well a bit of pressing and the talented hands of my oncologist found something.  The CAT scan hadn’t scanned here.  Is it cancerous?  It seems safe to assume so, but he also pointed out that it could be infected lymph nodes, a benign growth, anything.  We don’t know for sure until after I get an MRI and it is read.

Just a little shower.

Yesterday was the end of my novena to Our Lady of Good Success.  You can follow this link for more information about this apparition.  I found it interesting and very relevant to our times.  Perhaps, after this novena to Our Lady of Good Success, whatever is in my groin will be found to be benign and not cancer?

And if it is cancer?  A little more rain will fall.  But like Jesus, the Lord I profess to follow, I must say “But not my will, but your will Father.” Luke 42:22

Thank-you for reading my update!


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Memorial Day 2012

This poem was written by a World War I soldier at the end of World War I.  You can still feel the poignancy.  I doubt that there are any WWI veterans still alive since that conflict was nearly a hundred years ago.  We couldn’t avoid that war, though some historians say we could have.  That is neither here nor there now, because WWI didn’t just change the people who fought through it, it also changed the world, and not for the better.  Consider how short a period there is between the two World Wars.  And then between World War II and the putting up of the Berlin Wall and then how quickly came the Korean War, then the meandering Vietnam War shortly after.

It seems the world as a whole has not had peace again.

Please don’t forget to say a prayer for the souls of all the soldiers of every war that fell defending their country.

In Flanders Field - Copy of Signed Original

Eternal rest grant them, oh Lord.  Let perpetual light shine upon them.  May their souls, and the souls of all the fallen soldiers, rest in peace.   Amen.

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Robin Gibb dies from Colon Cancer

Sad, sad, sad.  I remember listening to the Bee Gee’s for most of the 1970’s.  Even when they weren’t singing disco, I enjoyed their pre-disco era music like “How Do You Mend A Broken Heart?

I’ve read a few different reports of  Robin’s diagnosis, but it doesn’t seem as if he was diagnosed with colon cancer any more than two years ago.  He went through operations, chemotherapy and being told he was in remission, only to have the cancer become active again about two weeks later.

-sigh!-  With all the money that Gibb had available, and still not only was there not a cure, there wasn’t even a prolonging of his life!

I feel very sad, I do when someone succumbs to cancer, but I feel especially bad when the cancer in question is colon cancer.

But I also feel blessed because I was diagnosed in 2009, and although I know my cancer is still active, I am home.  It hasn’t spread yet.  I am blessed!

Rest in peace Robin!

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Deficiency of the English Language

My friend Sherri is a blogger.  She writes “My Messy Mind.”  She doesn’t have cancer, but she has had her own health stalker.

She has just recently had some nice things happen in her life.  She is newly married.  Her husband just accepted a new job, so they are moving to a new community.  And they have just bought a new trailer for them to live in.  The trailer is gorgeous, just simply gorgeous!! It has a kitchen to die for, a fireplace, is bright and airy.  I just love it!!!

If you read my other blog, Mary Bennett, you will know that I have been dying to buy a “house on wheels.”  It has been my desire since the early 1980’s.

I am so thrilled for Sherri.  I am happy for her.

Now this is where the English language proves it deficiency:  what is the word for being happy that someone has something that you’ve wanted, wanting them to retain that object, and wishing that you would have one too?

I can’t think of a word for this emotion.  Words like jealous or envious convey negative emotions.  It infers that you are angry for their good fortune, and that you deserve it more than they do.

That is NOT the way that I feel.

Any suggestions for a correct English word for how I am feeling?


No Doctor’s Appointment

I was supposed to go to the doctor yesterday for him to tell me what my CAT scan shows, but I was a bad girl on Sunday and went to mass without a mask.  As a result, I was sicker than a dog starting about midnight that night.  By morning, I was shaking with cold, had a stomach that just ached and the very real probability of throwing up.

I dragged myself out of bed, shaking with the cold so badly I was in tears, got dressed, and then waited for my husband.  That is when I had my first session of reverse peristalsis aka vomiting.  I thought that would be it, but on the highway I had round two.  Luckily, I bought along a bowl.  It was then decided I would not be able to make the 60 mile trip, so we went home.  To round three.

Once home, my body continued to freeze, even with the electric blanket on, and then cam monstrous pains in my joints, followed by a headache that felt like I’d been kicked in the head by a donkey.

Thankfully, I finally shivered myself into on and off sleep, waking about 8pm feeling a lot better.  This morning I still have the headache, but otherwise feel pretty normal, though I’m staying in bed and not pushing myself.

Lesson learned, avoid high concentrations of people in my area, and wear a mask!!

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Pain in the….

The pain in the groin is back, I can only stand for short amounts of time.  Good thing that I go to see my Doctor on Monday.




Posted on May 2, 2012 | Leave a comment

So, it’s been a while since I’ve last posted, five months to be exact.  What’s been happening since then?

1. I have hair again, as opposed to I have my hair back.  I’m afraid I will never have my long, straight with a little flip of a curl at the end hair, back.  What I have now is hair with tight curls at the end.  It doesn’t like to lay flat, no matter what kind of goo that you pile on top of it.  As my daughter says, at least I’m not bald anymore.  But my hair looks so fake, many have thought it is a bad fitting wig.

2.  I have been on chemo without having any heart pounding reactions

3.  I have suffered in my body one of the listed side affects of chemo which has been excrutiatingly painful at times and left me bed bound

4.  I have experienced how my family will pull together to make my life more comfortable and livable, no matter what kind of a pia I become

5.  My husband will remain faithful to me and the family and the household even though everything is left to him to do, from work on

6.  My kids have to be told what to do, they honestly don’t see the chores that need to be done, BUT once told, they are ON it, without whining or complaint

7.  I have the best husband and kids in the world

8. Jack, our 6 year old cat, will scout me out and lay quietly at my feet dozing, when I feel my worst

9. My oncologist doesn’t think my tumors have grown and I go for a CAT scan at the local hospital in 4 days

10. My husband and kids have helped me to container plant some vegetables, so I will have a veggie garden this summer.

11. I might be part of a test group for a tumor destroying drug later this year.

12. A friend, with a lower stage cancer than mine, has had the cancer metastasize on her spine. Please pray for Jen. She is good, kind, and a mother.  If anyone deserves a miracle, it’s Jen and her family.

13. Another friend has been diagnosed, after a life threatening, life altering episode with a tumor disease that is not cancer, but just as awful! Please pray for a miracle for Alice.  Again, a loving, do anything to help you type of person.  Another person who deserves a miracle!

I guess that is enough of a catch up!


Disappearing Blogs

  Last week I blogged that I was going to have a CAT scan on Sunday and just general updates on me.  Nothing all that exciting, just mostly that my hair is back, although not my usual hair, but an unruly and tightly curling mess.

  Anyway, I hope that blog finds its way back to my blog.                 

  The CAT scan went fine, no feeling like I was going to have diahhrea and I was able to go for breakfast at the McDonalds Drive through.

   So, that is my update.

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