Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Soft and squishy!

Yes! Boobs are "done"!! My surgery Friday went quite well! Arrived bright and early with my parents
and Jon-I feel we really livin' up that joint! It was definitely the "hang out" for the murses and nurses!

 
"Y" Marks the spot!
Me and the doc talkin' shop...and by shop I mean boobs.
  The doc came in and took a final    
  look at the plastic cones. She   
  made me a bit nervous since she 
  said that we probably wouldn't   
  be able to bring the boobs in. 
  Since I did nipple sparing 
  surgery, we had to center the 
  implant around the nipple...not 
  like when you have them 
  removed-then you can put them on anywhere! But no turnin' back at that point!


All ready for surgery!!
My favorite druggies came in and gave me the gas...I seriously went into the wrong profession...no one could ever hate the anesthesiologists! They are wonderful people who do wonderful things! I don't even remember being wheeled back to the operating room! I guess after surgery, the doc came out and told my parents I was gonna look G-O-O-D! Just what my dad wanted to hear I am sure! Due to the mastectomy they had to put in two different sized implants, so my left breast is 350cc's while my right is 300cc's! Crazy how they can figure that out in the operating room with all that blood and tissue lying about!


No drinking after midnight...HA! I'm such a rebel!
Stay in school Kids.
  Before I knew it...I was
  waking up in post op-
  bandaged up like a
  mummy! The nurse
  shoved some more meds
  down my throat and I
  assured her I was ready
  to get OUTTA there! I
  headed home and rested before heading out for some Thai food with the fam! 

Jon and I after surgery heading home!
Saturday rolled around and I was a bit sore, but feeling pretty good-despite the fact that my fridge had broke and melted all over my floor! I am not supposed to lift anything over 10 pounds for 2 weeks...if you're bored at home, try it! It's amazing how difficult that is! Thankfully, Jon and my parents were around to do all the "heavy lifting." I was too nervous to take the bandages off and it technically wasn't even my day of the week to shower...so kept them on through Saturday night as well!

Yes! Headin' home!


  The "BIG REVEAL" came on Sunday! It's
  always a bit shocking at first...tears streamed down
  my face as I stared at my reconstructed chest. I had
  thoughts of Pamela Anderson, running down the
  Baywatch Beach-but what I saw was more of a
  Dr. 90210 enhancement job gone wrong! It looked
  like one of the boobs was the mother boob of the
  other one, my nipples were still all cockeyed, that
  mixed with the scars, cuts, glues, and rash that I
  got from the dermabond pushed me over the edge!
  I immediately called my parents; my mom, the level-headed one said to give it time. That I had just had invasive surgery and that it would be just fine!  My dad-the crazy one, told me not to worry, he had recently watched a movie where the actresses big boobs had nipples that pointed out to the side...Thanks Dad!! ;)

But honestly...they were both right. Already the swelling has gone down and everything is looking much better-today my doc said I still had a bit of fluid in one breast and once that was out, they would be a near match. My dad also called me today and told me about three young men who had just been admitted to the burn unit at the hospital I went to - 90% of their bodies covered in burns...and I'm worried about a stray nip?!? How incredibly selfish am I! Nothing like an incredible family that puts it all in perspective for you! 

My incredibly strong support system...physically and emotionally.
I could not as for more...I love you!!!



Thursday, October 27, 2011

FINALLY!!!!

Wow...it's been a while, but figured it was time to hop back on the blogger bandwagon as tomorrow is my FINAL surgery!! Yes, after tomorrow I will stop bruising people with my hugs, I will be able to lay on my stomach, I will have boobs that bounce, move and most importantly...are cancer free (though I s'pose they have been for a while now)!!

My last expansion to the full 275 cc's occurred on August 18th, and was by far the most painful one yet. I had a hard time sleeping, sitting, being awake basically! Unfortunately for Shelley, I did not have a hard time whining about it-she had to spend that entire weekend with me! Seems so long ago now! The doc scheduled my surgery for October 10th...she was booking up fast, everyone wants new boobs for the holidays I guess! Well, due to a wedding in North Dakota, I had to move the surgery, but that's okay...family is more important than any 'ol surgery, the wedding was beautiful and an ABSOLUTE BLAST...and really, what was a few more weeks at that point??

Fast forward to today! Went to the doc for pre-surgery work up and blood draw. She answered all my questions and walked me through what would occur while I'm sleeping tomorrow...I am in good hands.
Here it is, less than a year from original diagnosis-it's truly amazing how much your life, attitude, well being...how everything can change in a year. Good days, bad days, I know more than ever that I am loved and the luckiest person ever with all the incredible people in my life! I could go on and on...but to be honest, my mind is bouncing around as much as my boobs will be in a few weeks! So for today, think I will sign off! This time, I promise to not let it sit for 2 months...updates after surgery!!
My incredible family (Missing Kim, Don, Doni, and Sophia though)!!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Top Heavy!

Well, went to the doc yesterday, she said that now my skin is wanting to cooperate, so they put another 30 cc's in. To be kinda honest, I was hoping they'd say I was all full and set a surgery date, oh well! One more fill next Thursday to get me to the predesignated 275, then I wait a month, then I do the big switch out. I am ready too! I just feel so big! I found my sports bra difficult to maneuver when I went to the gym last night. I don't think I'm a vain person, but spent most of my warmup on the treadmill staring at my "Baywatch Breasts" in the mirror! Right now they are hard plastic, so I hurt most people I hug and they are further apart then they will be after the big change out...which, trust me...is not good when you're sweating!! Overall this is all going so fast, but some days (weeks) it seems to drag a bit!

I was running a little late and wasn't able to make Shelley's first chemo appointment, but I did see her yesterday and of course, she's a positivity power house! Would ya really expect anything less?? I have to get her the new "What's on Your Rack" shirt (shown below)! My wonderful friend Duane Daugherty makes quite the tasty bbq sauce (www.mrdoggity.com) and had this wonderful pink shirt made for me! He's been one of my biggest supporters, I love him and his wonderful wife Cheryl...really, two of the most wonderful people you could ever have in life! Thank you Duane for how great you've been since I've met you!!
Yep...just woke up! I wear this shirt to the gym, to sleep, to mow...It's wonderful! Thanks Duane and Cheryl!!!! XOXO

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Dream as if you'll live forever, live as if you'll die today... ~James Dean

My First Haircut!!!!!
Had my doc appointment last Thursday-they added 25 more, but said my skin is too thin so we're done!!! I'm at 225 cc's right now, and I was supposed to go to 275-but this is close enough for me! I have an appointment in two weeks to set a surgery date (probably early September)! I could not be more ecstatic! In other exciting news...I went for my first haircut today! My hair seems to be growing all random and wavy, so she cleaned it up and added some wax to complete my faux hawk! I love it! I actually took the blog title of this one from the bathroom at the stylist's! Love the quote...looking back over this quick update, I sure love a lot today! It's just been perfect! XOXO

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Cancer needs to get cancer.

Dying Sam's hair!!
So I am at a stopping point (for a bit). Saw the doc-my doc-yesterday, she confirmed that "yes, those are in fact stitches." She then proceeded to take the stitches out that had already popped through my skin, she slapped on some ointment, put on a bandaid and told me to wait another week for a fill. She said my skin is pretty thin so not sure how much more we can fill - guess I'm destined to be an A+ cup, which is quite fine by me, I once heard that more than a handful is too much anyway (oops...earmuffs dad)!

Just testin' out the gals!
Anyway, I cannot complain, I am on the downhill. For those of you who are my faithful blog followers (thank you Laurie), you have read about my wonderful friend Shelley! Compassionate, positive, great cook, smart, has ridiculously good looking friends...you know the girl. Well, turns out she has triple negative breast cancer - just found out on July 18th...as you can see, me and my friends are complete attention whores! (Kidding)!


I don't know what this epidemic is that's going around and I have no idea why it would ever fall on someone who really does know how to live life. I truly do believe life gives you only what you can handle, unfortunately for Shelley, she can handle A LOT! Shelley is ridiculously strong, I don't think I even realized how strong she was until this point. She is always the one to take care of all of us, always on the go, if she has a free minute she will fill it with friends, family, and love! She makes every person in her life feel like the most important person. It will definitely be interesting to see Shelley let someone take care of her for once!!!

My sister Kimberwolf once said, "It's amazing how one word can change your life." Which is so true...
 Most amazing gal!
I was also once told by person, who will remain anonymous, that if I said "I love you" all the time, the sincerity would wear off, it wouldn't mean anything. Well, with that, I heavily disagree...and my "life changing" moment just makes me realize that much more how incredibly lucky and blessed I am. I love life, I love Shelley, I love all my friends and family - with all my sincerity and not just from the bottom, but from the sides, front, and back of my heart...I LOVE YOU! XOXO

If you want to read how incredibly positive, uplifting, and amazing my friend Shelley is, check out her blog at: http://shellsbuzz.blogspot.com! I also added a video on the bottom originally posted by our friend James, which I find hilarious...but WARNING...if easily offended, DO NOT watch!!!

My favorite picture...Shelley has the best smile!



Saturday, July 16, 2011

And here I thought I was thick skinned...

This is not to scale...
So I believe this is kind of how the tissue expander is in me...the doc removed all the breast tissue, than lifted my pec muscle (which I am sure was a ton of work since I'm HUGE)! They put the expander under the muscle, than surrounded the bottom of the expander with cadaver tissue, stitching the tissue to my pec muscle, that way the entire expander is surrounded, on the top with my [HUGE] pec and underneath with cadaver tissue. They do this to ensure that the tissue expander is protected, if the expander "sees the light of day" as my doctor said, then they have to remove it and start from scratch.

Sweet edit job yo. 
Why all this information now?? Well it looks like my expander is wanting out...I have a couple of stitches trying to pop through my skin. So needless to say, I didn't have a fill this week, the nurse wants to wait until I can see MY doctor. She doesn't think it'll be a big deal, but just wants to ensure that nothing will tear through, for fear of starting from scratch. I am happy they are so incredibly cautious-so my appointment with the doc is Thursday at 2...hopefully everything will turn out all right and I can continue with my fills! Almost done, almost done...

Friday, July 8, 2011

I like big boobs and I cannot lie...

I am up to 200 cc's now and feel great...except for the pointy edges of the expanders diggin' into my skin. I have about two fills left, than I sit for a month before going into surgery and replacing the expanders with silicone implants. It's just nice to be moving forward in this process and to actually see the finish line...I guess to relate it to running terms, I'm at about mile 22 and haven't "hit the wall" yet, the finish line is just in sight!! Thankfully, my wonderful friend Hollie has been documenting every cc of saline and is making a "movie" to be published here on this blog displaying my ever expanding chest...just to give you sneak peak I pulled one of the pictures she took at my last fill (150 ccs)...see below! Two things to note about this photo...all of my FANTASTIC hair, and how big I am in comparison to that double bubble!! More to come - Love you all!

**Almost forgot to add, my incredible friend Sam killed her structural engineering exam!!! Passed with flying colors! The odds of getting breast cancer are much higher than the odds of passing that exam. She is officially the smartest girl in the country! Way to go Sam!!!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Fill 'er up!

Well had another 25 cc's today and all is looking good (well as good as it can look)! I have a bit of contact dermatitis from something, but the rash goes nicely with my new LONG hair (see below)! The nurse said I have 100 cc's in each boob and they plan on filling me up to 275 cc's per boob, so only 175 to go! I feel like they are already getting in the way of my arm swing. I tried to find a picture to depict my current "side boob" but when I googled those words, the women's chests that popped up looked NOTHING like mine-damn that sport's illustrated! The nurse said that the expanders will feel and look weird, but once the implants are in, they will look like natural, silicone-filled, cancer free, knockers!
Am I more shocked by my hair or my breateses....

Thursday, June 16, 2011

A+??

Tissue expander

The first expansion was today...phew, nerve wracking. The nurse was very nice and calmly tried to explain it all to me. First, she told me that the tissue expanders are made of plastic and they have a magnetic port. She used a magnet to find the port, then marked it with an "x", like a treasure map, except vastly different. She planned on cleaning the area then sticking a giant needle into the "x" to fill the expander...well this immediately sent me into a hot flash-I mean those needles are HUGE. The nurse was sweet and could tell I was nervous so went and got the doc who told me not to worry. She said, "yes" I was being quite the baby and to "suck it up!" Well...that's what she shoulda said anyway-she actually told me that everyone is nervous their first time (insert dirty joke here). Despite how busy she was...she stayed, cleaned me up, and stuck the needle in-surprisingly...didn't feel it at all! She filled me full of 25 cc's of saline (start'n' small). So I think now, I look like a cockeyed A, maybe A+, but it's all good...straight, crooked, or non-existent, I'm cancer free! From now on I go in weekly until I get my knockers (c'mon, there's only so many words for boobs) to the size where I want them. Since I will stay relatively small it shouldn't take long! More to come after next weeks appointment! XOXO

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Short and sweet update!

The drains came out on Monday and I am back at the lake feeling GREAT! I never knew how nice it was to be able to quickly use the restroom or shower without having to hold onto drains or make sure I don't yank them out of my sides! I have a doctor appointment with the plastic surgeon tomorrow, so hopefully she'll approve me for some desk work! I am ready to get back into the swing of things! More updates after the doc appointment! I know...a lot of exclamation points, I promise I'm not yelling everything - they just look happier! XOXO

Friday, June 3, 2011

Drain Pain...

Just a quick update. Went to the doc yesterday...my blood utters (AKA JP Drains) have to stay in until Monday. Going on two weeks with them now and ready to have them removed!! For those of you who do not know what JP drains are, they are just something put in after surgery to capture all the drainage (pretty gross). I basically milk myself on a daily basis and keep track...they have to stay in until I get under 30 ml per day. I'm pretty close...Monday should do it.

Other than that, the appointment went pretty well, they had to put me on another antibiotic, as one breast seemed a bit red and we want to keep out infection, so I'll keep an eye on that and update you on any new findings! I felt a bit bad, I was frustrated and my poor pop had to hear the brunt of it...but he took it well stating he's had to deal with my bitchy attitude for 31 years (this is why I love my fam...always keeping me in check)! I probably did push a little hard yesterday and paid for it by that night...I was pretty sore.

Sam's Tiki party is this weekend, so looks like I'll be sportin' my drains. Guess that's fine, they're totally in this year from what I hear! My hair is growing by the day, I have a nice covering of dark peach fuzz! My Aunt Tammy (the one who made the quilt) and Uncle Bruce should be in town this weekend, so lots of activity! I hope you all are well! XOXO

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Take THAT Cancer!

I know I've been out of touch for a while, but it's definitely not due to bad news. I had my surgery last Tuesday, an exact week from today. My nurse said the results came back quite quickly and that no other cancer was found! She congratulated me on being officially cancer free! So guess I can't use that whole "I have Cancer" excuse anymore... 

Surgery...well it's surgery. I was in for about 7 hours, having a bilateral mastectomy with expanders put in. I am actually more sore today than I was the day after surgery due to the lack of high quality drugs...don't get me wrong, I still have Oxycontin, vicodine, Valium, diazepam, lorazepam, and a handful of others to take, but I sometimes miss the push button morphine!
On top of the surgery I decided it would be fun to get a bit of poison ivy as well, so the itchiness of the ivy has really drowned out the pain of the boob-loss. My dad has been by my side to help with the little things that used to be easy-sitting up, pouring juice, etc. Though he has a problem with the gross stuff, so my mom gets to empty my drains and re-apply my bandages. The true surgery Nazi is Kari-if she wasn't a teacher she would've (and should have) been a nurse! If I fart the wrong way, Kari is on her feet to see if I'm okay. She threatened once to tie socks on my hands so that I'd stop itching my poison ivy, which scared me enough to call the doc for some steroids-the girl seriously has eyes in the back of her head! Kari probably would've been upset to hear that about 20 minutes after she left the lake, I did get hit pretty hard in the chest (doing something Kari definitely would not have approved of); I was pretty scared, thank goodness Don, my calm and collected fireman brother-in-law was here, he checked me all out and everything still looks good (well as good as it can look)! Honestly, my whole family has been the best! We were all down at the lake this Memorial Day and even though I spent most of it on the recliner, it was great!

I am hoping to get back to work soon, as soon as I can drive that is. I have been doing some exercises trying to stretch out the muscles. I have a couple more appointments this week so will keep you updated! I don't know when the "expanding" actually begins or when I'm going to have surgery again to replace the expanders for implants. Right now it's just a lot of deformity and scarring, it looks like a surgery site! So while I'll be under construction for a while, that is fine, because I am done with this cancer shit. No more mammograms, or worrying, or chemo...done. In less than 7 months my life has been turned upside down, in less than 7 months I learned the selflessness of everyone that surrounds me.
Thank you all for all the support. More to come! I promise to quit slacking on the updates! XOXO

P.S. For those of you not on facebook, wanted to share the following link, I'm famous! ;)

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Have to get this off my chest...

Well, surgery is set for the 24th of May. This week will be my last week of work. The docs said to take about 6 weeks, but feel I will be going stir crazy by then...so hoping to get back to work in 3, but I won't push it! I am nervous for this one. I've spoken to many people, and have about 4 more people that I should talk with, but ultimately, the decision is mine-no one can make up my mind for me. I have to trust the surgeon in this case and honestly, if I never had to go through chemo again, it'd be too soon. So I'm trading in bi-annual MRIs for expanders and implants...once these are in I won't even have to have mammograms for monitoring! So guess after the 24th I'll have more than just the stress off my chest! I know I'll get through just fine, just a bit more scared/anxious on this one. I can't complain though, just this step and hopefully this will be behind me. I recently went to a benefit with Kari, my little sis. It was this wonderful "wigging out" event (see pictures below)! It was for her teacher friend, Tasha, who has cancer, 30's, healthy, non-smoker - lung cancer. Beautiful woman, beautiful family, I am sure the unknown for her is quite scary. I can't speak for her, but I'm sure if all she had to do for survival is remove some balls of fat, she wouldn't think twice. I don't know when this epidemic of cancer started, but my thoughts and prayers go out to everyone who is touched by it. More to come before surgery...thank you all so much for your incredible support, the long conversations, and my back and forth discussions!! Time to go watch a curl up on my couch with my WONDERFUL quilt and watch a couple rented movies...always nice to have a distraction from your thoughts (thanks to Reese Witherspoon)!! :)  XOXO

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Decisions, decisions...

Ever have those fantastic shoe shopping days where every shoe is cute AND fits AND you find exactly what your looking for? Yeah...boob "shopping" is so not the same. Black pumps, strappy sandals, and platform heals versus tug flap, expanders, and implants - where do I start? Do I pick something for comfort or something that looks good with the new summer dress I have? Something that'll last, but looks a bit harsh or something that I may need to replace after a few miles? Oh the decisions...and they're all mine! Thankfully I have all weekend to think about it!! ;)

The plastic surgeon I met with was very nice and had a fun personality, so at least I feel confident in that! My dad came with me to the appointment today, as he does with every appointment. Needless to say, if there was one he should have missed, it was probably this one...nothing like feeling implants with you dad and deciding which ones would feel more real. But it is always nice to have his support (no bra pun intended)!

So...decisions. Plastic surgeon said she can do an implant, which would be easier to heal from. If I go this route, I can do saline or silicone. Silicone must be replaced every 10 years, while saline, you can let go until it ruptures, but will eventually have to go in for a refill. She said they would look nice, but require some maintenance and more surgery. She said if I wanted to go bigger than my A (yes A) cup, she would have to put in expanders. If I was looking for something more permanent, then I could go the tug flap route where they take tissue and muscle from my thigh. So I'll have some scarring, but the boobs will look real, I'll be able to sleep on them and they'll be maintenance free, but it requires a lot more work up front. I won't even get into nipple sparing versus removing all of it, since that will be a decision for my breast cancer surgeon (not to be confused with my plastic surgeon). There was a ton of information, and to be honest, I think I am still digesting it.

The plastic surgeon did guarantee me that I wouldn't be a very happy person for the first month, with the first week being the worst of it. Thankfully, my pectoral muscle will have it's own little "Dr. Conrad" built right in, giving it local anesthetic whenever she gets sore!! So that's that for right now...I meet with Dr. Conner (my breast cancer surgeon) on Monday and will hopefully have an answer for both of them by that time. Instead of reading and thinking this evening, I had mexican food with my dad, mowed my lawn, and took a nap...not too productive, but you all know how I love to procrastinate!

Friday, April 22, 2011

DONE!!!!!

This is it...the beginning!
Wow, what a weight lifted from my shoulders! I am done!! AND I ran better than I thought...prepared to do a 5-hour marathon, I finished in 3:43:50...which is great for me!!! I don't even know where to begin, the race is crowded from beginning to end, not only with runners, but with people out there cheering us on! Around mile 8-ish I got into some trouble where I didn't think there was a way I would finish, then my lifesaver arrived...Shari Bashaw-she told me stories of her 61 marathons, of her life, of her ultras she's done (second in Western States)! We peed in the woods together...you really can't beat the bond of a run! She carried me through and pushed me forward around mile 18, I know I wouldn't have finished without her, thank you Shari!
Can you see this guy!

Of course everyone there was an inspiration...there was the *mostly naked running guy, who ran barefoot in a loin cloth, a man that ran in full fire gear and of course Team Hoyt, the father who pushes his paraplegic son...incredible! On top of all that, the streets were just lined from beginning to end with people there to cheer you on! Plus I brought a couple from home! Brent and Sam both came out to race and I got to see my incredible gal pal Sinem out there-they were all so wonderful (you can imagine how pleasant I was with all that anxiety) I could go on and on...but suppose I have to get back to work sometime today!

THE FINISH! So excited!
As fun as Boston was, home is where the heart is and I am glad to be back. I arrived to an incredible surprise of all my favorites left by my friends (gotta stop giving out my damn garage code) and a beautiful quilt made by my Aunt Tammy! All of it came in use yesterday since it was MY LAST CHEMO DAY!!!! I got home, watched some movies with my dad, ate way too many reeses eggs left by my friends and cuddled in my incredibly made, wonderful smelling quilt...Dorothy had one thing right..."there is no place like home!"
Me and Dick Hoyt...incredible Inspiration!


Becky, Sam and I...thank you ladies!



Brent and I at the finish!

The wonderful quilt made by my Aunt Tammy!
This is what I got to come home too...I am SO BLESSED! LOVE YOU ALL!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Boston or Bust...

Well, gettin' all packed for Boston! The race is on Monday (the 18th) and for those that are interested...I am Bib Number 12716 and I begin in Wave two at 10:20!! I am nervous, but ready to go!! I know I can do it...I can finish and am no longer worried about time...just crossing that finish line! I'm not even taking a watch with me...just a camera and a positive attitude! So wish me luck and I'll be thinking of you all on Monday!! Love you! XOXO!


video

Friday, April 1, 2011

I'm not slow...I'm just enjoying the course...

Well, I must say, this wasn't my strongest running week. Earlier this week I went for my nice morning run, slower than I wanted it to, but I'm dealing with that. I had an awful taste of metal in my mouth. 3 miles and 30 minutes (yes 30 minutes) later, I was bent over the toilet dry heaving like a college gal coming home from Power and Light. Anyone who's ever been with me when I've had root beer moonshine knows that I am not a peaceful puker-ever heard a donkey being kicked in the ribs over and over? Me neither, but I am assuming that would sound something like me! Good thing I didn't have anything in my stomach! This morning was a bit better, just so slow and I am tired while doing it! I think that's what makes me the most nervous, is that I won't finish. Somedays I feel that there was more I could've done, that I used cancer as my crutch. I could've eaten better, stretched more, done a few more long runs, but I used a lot of excuses. Oh well, you must lie in the bed you've made...even if the sheets haven't been washed! So send me your positive running thoughts on the 18th cause I think I'm gonna need 'em!

XOXO...Kelly

Sunday, March 27, 2011

One and done!!

Sam's a slave driver!
Had another round of chemo on Friday-only ONE left, that's right, one! I am quite excited about it!! The doc was even nice enough to move the last chemo date to fall after Boston. So the marathon is on the 18th (which I am actually quite scared about due to my lack of effective training) then my chemo will be on the 20th! My oncologist would like me to wear some sort of t-shirt like "If you can read the back of this shirt, the gal gettin' chemo is beating you." I also suggested I put his picture on the front-he fully informed me that it's okay for me to quit, but we all know I'm a bit more stubborn than that (thanks dad)! Besides Sam already has her tickets to fly out and I'm sure she'll have quite the motivating comments to keep me moving... ---->

I will definitely keep you updated on the road up to Boston...I wish I was more prepared, more confident, but it is what it is now. I know I can do it, just slower and with a bit more "next day soreness." Thank you everyone for all the support, love, and prayers! Love you! XOXO

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

What a weekend!!

Me and Sindy!
Where to start...well, I picked up my best friend Sindy from the airport on Thursday night. She flew in to attend the "One-Upper Party" and my sister's baby shower and what a lifesaver she was from beginning to end! Friday was spent trying to wrap up loose ends for the baby shower, it really was non-stop running. Come to find out Friday night that my cousin Alicia had come down with my cousin Dave all the way from Minnesota to surprise me and come to the party! It had been years since I'd seen her, I was so excited...well the surprises did not stop there. Saturday morning my other cousins Shanda and Kristi AND my aunt Sharon had all driven down to surprise me. It was more than I could ask for. I know the support I have from my family and friends, but did not expect them to come all that way for less than a 24-hour visit.


The double skullet! Yikes!
Al startin' the show!
The "One-Upper Party" was quite a success, I felt bad that I didn't have the time to visit with everyone like I wanted to! I was amazed at the number of people who donated time, money, and hair to the effort! My cousin Al did ALL of the shaving, mohawks, personalized statements, skullets...she was quite the beautician! I of course started my evening off with a good ol' Missouri skullet. A bit creepy, yes, but still, had to have some fun with it! After kicking it off, the haircuts kept flowing. We even had some complete strangers from upstairs in the bar come downstairs for a cut and make a donation! Kari chopped off all her hair for locks of love, Sam ended up with an incredible looking mohawk, and my cousin Al even shaved her head-just to reveal how more gorgeous she truly is inside and out! After all the cuts AND the silent auction, a bit over $4,000 dollars was raised. I have so much I want to write, but just don't have the words. I don't even know where to start with the "thank you's" I would need an entire page to list all the people who gave so generously. The generosity of my family, friends, and complete strangers leaves me breathless. How do you describe the indescribable? Express the inexpressible? My heart is just so full of love and gratitude. I have never been more content, felt more loved, or known more surely just how strong the bonds are of family and true friends. This is not an easy road for anyone, but for me-due to the love and support that I've had-it's a breeze. I am honored that people describe me as "strong" and "courageous", but I don't think those words can be defined as a singular action. There is no way I could wake up with the smile on my face if it wasn't for my support system-the run with Sam, the goofy text I get from my dad, knowing fully that anytime I need to break down, anytime I need to fall, I will be caught. There is no feeling that is more safe. Thank you so much, to everyone. I am truly blessed! Love you all! XOXO
Me, Sam, and Shelley

Me and Jeremy
Me and Kari
Just a few of the people who went short!
 

Friday, March 4, 2011

Round two...here we go!

I think chemo day is probably my least favorite day so far. I don't know why, it's not like I "exert" myself in anyway. I just heavily dislike it, I could most definitely even use the word hate. I think it's the tired-ness and headaches that go along with it. But that's okay, it's an easy step to the finish, one small hill to get over! I am actually extremely lucky, as I have met some incredible people who have to do this for months, MONTHS! Today my dad will come up and spend it with me! I feel sorry for him, he'll have to sit in an uncomfortable chair and watch me sleep! At least I get the recliner!! Oh well, after today, I'll be half done! HALF DONE!!!! All downhill from here baby!

So...Talking with my sisters, we did come up with some positives of the hairloss:

 1. I can pick at it all I want right now (anybody who's ever
     seen me pick my split ends knows this is VERY annoying-
     I can't even stand it). Is anybody really going to say "stop
     it". If they do I will just pull out a chunk for some shock
     value...that'll shut them up!
2. Wigs are already ready to go! No more bad hair days!
3. I will save a bundle on shampoo, conditioner, gel, etc, etc.
4. I can be as jerk-y as I want...no one wants to hit a cancer
    patient (well, except Kari and Jen).
5. Possibility of no leg hair for a bit!!
6. I will get to see what I look like as a red-head, a blonde,
    green, pink, orange, etc.
7. I will be SO much more aerodynamic when I run, I could    
    possibly shave (no pun intended) a whole 2 seconds off my
    marathon time without the weight of this hair!!

Please feel free to add on! I will let you know how today goes!!