Thursday, January 29, 2009

Race Planning for 2009!

This is my friend Donise and I getting ready to go for a run today. Donise started training for her first 5k! about 4 weeks ago. We are working on picking a local race around the end of March, beginning of April to run together.

I am pretty sure I have settled on which race to do for my first marathon. I decided to stay here locally for this first one. It is an event I have had my eye on ever since high school when I ran track for Richardson High. Sometimes we would go to White Rock Lake to run and I always thought it would be great to someday "Run The Rock".

As of now the race calendar for 2009 looks like this;
March/ April - 5k ( TBA)
June 6th- Komen Race for the Cure 5k, Plano,Tx.
December 13th- White Rock Marathon! Dallas, Tx.

Monday, January 26, 2009

MRI & Tumor Marker Test Results


So far what I know is the MRI today was normal! I do not know what the PET scan had picked up last week, but TODAY with the further testing, all of you prayer warriors and our Lord's hand of protection, my tests are all normal and my tumor markers are back in normal range!! I will have some more info. tomorrow, however my very good friend ( you know who you are :) called tonight and told me I needed to put "something" on the blog to let all of you know how today went :)

It was a long day, the test took 2 hours, but by the time I got home I already had an e-mail with the good news! The staff , technicians, doctors & nurses are some of the most wonderful people I have ever met. They all take good care of me during some of the most difficult moments. I am so thankful for all of them :) Thank you Dawn and Emily for being so patient today and waiting :) It is our tradition to go get lunch after testing, usually at Brio :) We were all starving and it was good! Thanks for all of your thoughts, prayers, e-mails and calls. I went today feeling very calm and at peace. I could feel your prayers.

My wonderful nurse & friend wrote in the e-mail " you are so normal, it is not normal"! Now that's what we want to hear ~

So I'll stand on Your truth, and I'll fight with Your strength
You bring the VICTORY, by the power of Christ in me

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Monday @ 11 am

MRI will be on Monday morning @ 11:00 to look at the lymph node area in between the pectoral muscles. They will be trying to get a closer look to determine what is showing up on the PET scan.

If possible, please lift this up over the weekend and Monday @ 11:00 am.
We are praying specifically that the test is conclusive, shows nothing to be concerned about or that the area of concern is gone altogether, and that my tumor markers are normal ( lab results also on Monday).

chorus to "In Me" by Casting Crowns

I'll go, but I cannot go alone
Cause I know I'm nothing on my own
But the power of Christ in me makes me strong

Cause when I'm weak, You make me strong
When I'm blind, You shine Your light on me
Cause I'll never get by living on my own ability
How refreshing to know You don't need me
How amazing to find that you want me
So I'll stand on Your truth, and I'll fight with Your strength
Until You bring the victory, by the power of Christ in me

Thanks all~ Elayne

Thursday, January 22, 2009

PET scan results

Well, we may have clicked our heels together just a little too early. I saw my oncologist today and received the test results. Good news and not so good news.

Not so good first~ The PET scan showed a very small ( about the size of a q-tip head) area which they feel is located in the lymph node between the muscles in the pectoral area. This is on the same side as the original cancer. At this point, no-one is sure exactly what it is and the challenge is going to be figuring it out. Because of the location ( between the muscles) and how small it is, it will be very difficult to get to so a biopsy does not seem to be an option. If needed, they will have to do surgery to cut it out. This apparently will be complicated again due to the size & location.
So... what we are doing first is an MRI to try to take a closer look at it. This is where the prayer comes in ~ please pray that the MRI reveals what it is so I do not have to have this surgery and that it is not cancer. God has answered us so many times before so we need lots of prayer warriors on this one :) It could be that we just keep an eye on it and check it again in 3 months to see if there is any change. Just don't know right now.
They also did more labs to check my tumor markers ( which were elevated last month). Please also be in prayer that they have returned to normal and have not increased.

The good news~ There are NO other areas showing anything from all the tests! Other than a bit disappointed I am feeling well. I had a Zometa treatment today and experienced a lot of dizziness , however it seems to be going away. Tim came over after work to get dinner and a movie for us so he would be here with me until Chris got home :) Gotta love having sons!
I will keep you posted~ our dinner and movie are here :)

Sunday, January 18, 2009

One more test ~ Monday

Tomorrow morning ( Monday) at 10:30 I have my final test hopefully for a few months. This will be the PET scan.

Then on Thursday morning, I will have a Zometa treatment followed by my check up with the oncologist.So, another busy week with apts., tests, etc.

Specific prayer requests~ My right arm is pretty messed up from last week, so they may have to try to get the IV in the left arm for both the test and Zometa. We are praying for "1 stick" for both of these. Also that there are no complications and the test results from the PET scan also show NED ( no evidence of disease) as were the results from last weeks tests. Thank you all for remaining so faithful through this journey~ Elayne

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Test Results

Great News today! Tests look good :)
Here is the e-mail from my oncology nurse ( who knew I would be waiting for these results :)


Thanks everyone~ Still have a PET scan on Monday, but this is great news!

What a wonderful God we have -- He is the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the source of every mercy, and the one who so wonderfully comforts and strengthens us in our hardships and trials. And why does he do this? So that when others are troubled, needing our sympathy and encouragement, we can pass on to them this same help and comfort God has given us. 2 Corinthians 1: 3-4

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

A long day~

The tests for today are over. It was a long day and I am glad to be home :) I don't have any results yet but want to thank all of you that are thinking about and praying for me/us. I wanted to share something that happened today because I believe there is so much power in prayer and I love to share these experiences when we see God working in big or small ways.
When I arrived at the hospital, they put an IV in my arm for all the injections for the tests. In the past we have had a lot of trouble with my left arm getting the IV in because of so much scar tissue having formed from all the needle "sticks".
So, we began using the right arm which we were unable to use for many years since 13 lymph nodes have been removed. Usually it goes pretty well but not today :( The IV was started and the injection successfully put in for the bone scan. Then I went to have the CT.
Something was telling me that something was wrong. I felt strongly that I needed to tell the person getting ready to load me up with the CT injection that I felt she needed to check the IV. Sure enough it was not working properly, there was a kink in it. It would not have been fun for that stuff to go into my arm instead of the vein. She looked up and said "Oh, Thank you".
After getting Deb ( the one that puts the IV in) and 4 sticks, 1 IV line popping out and 3 "blown" veins later we were good to go!
We always pray for protection, wisdom & discernment, as well as for my doctors, nurses and technicians. Today, we once again saw the answers to prayer .So, thank you all for praying today, please continue to pray as we await the test results over the next few days.
Now, it's time for Advil and my Dead Sea salt bath :)
Goodnight all~

Monday, January 12, 2009

Prayer for tomorrow's tests~

Hello everyone!
Well, tomorrow ( Tuesday) is test day once again. I will ( after drinking that nasty contrast) be having a bone scan, CT chest/pelvic scan and chest x rays. It is a long and difficult day but it will be over tomorrow and Chris will be with me :) Next week I head to Arlington for a PET scan. There has to be one week in between these tests because of all the contrasts, dyes etc. that is injected.
Specific Prayers;
I am a bit more concerned this time as my tumor markers are elevated and the CT angiogram showed a small area of concern on my spine ( T11). These may or may not mean anything.
I would really appreciate prayer for today, tomorrow and as we wait for results. Please join us in praying for NED ( no evidence of disease) OR better put~ for healing!

Otherwise, I have felt ok, the pain in my rib and neck has increased and we are also praying for relief from that again.Advil does seem to help and there is a lot of tension in the muscles around those areas. I am doing yoga, massage, and Sea salt baths for that. My parents brought me Dead Sea bath salts and minerals from Israel ~ how wonderful! My blood pressure has again gone up too high and I am trying to find a balance with my meds. to keep it under control. I am once again back on the beta blocker and BP medication ( half dose).

I have been able to run and do all as usual. I am very easily running 4 miles at a good pace and still have my sights on a marathon. I have started training a couple of clients and am fortunate to be one of those people who "love their job"!
Thanks everyone for hanging in there with me~

So ever since we fist heard about you we have kept on praying and asking God to help you understand what He wants you to do; asking Him to make you wise about spiritual things; and asking that the way you live will always please the Lord and honor Him, so that you will always be doing good, kind things for others, while all the time you are learning to know God better and better, We are praying, too, that you will be filled with His mighty, glorious strength so that you can keep going no matter what happens -- always full of the joy of the Lord, and always thankful to the Father who has made us fit to share all the wonderful things that belong to those who live in the Kingdom of light. Colossians 1: 9-12

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

My friend has cancer~

What do I do, how do I be a friend when my friend is living with cancer?

I decided to touch on this because I think this is a tough area for everyone. Just last week I sent an e-mail to a few friends after talking with my counselor and decided I needed to be specific about how they could help. Realizing that others don't know what you need if you don't ask. Many people can't or won't ask so I hope this puts a voice to those that need it. There are some do's & dont's here that I hope you find helpful. I realize that it is very difficult to know what to say or do so hopefully some of this will help you and your friend. After 10 years of living with cancer these are a few things that I have found helpful~

~ phone calls, cards, e-mails, comments on their blog, etc. Sometimes phone calls are too much, especially if your friend is going through treatments and does not feel well. If you are a caretaker, maybe encourage letting voice mail pick up the calls until the person feels up to returning them. Don't be discouraged if you don't hear back from them, it still means a lot.

~ going for a walk or run together if your friend is well enough. This is always a nice change and helped me both times. Getting outdoors and moving is very therapeutic however sometimes your friend may need encouragement to get out there.

~ Staying positive about your friends future. Talk about goals, plans, life. There are plenty of doubts regarding the future and talking about moving forward is very helpful.

~ talk about your life and family ( hopefully the positive things). Your friend wants the distraction of other people's lives. Not to dwell on theirs all the time.

~ No-one wants to be in this situation, and your friend definitely does not want to be perceived as "unable". If they are up to it give them opportunities to help you or others. This may be in a big or small way. Whatever they may be up to, use your discretion so they don't feel "obligated" if it is too much. Many people going through or that have been through cancer like to "speak" to groups or encourage others in any way that is helpful. If there is an oppurtunity, ask them.

~ Get together. Do the things you always did together. Go out for lunch, coffee, shopping etc. If your friend is not up to that just visit, talk, watch a movie together. Work on a project together ( photos, painting, family journals, etc). Especially during times that family members are away. Idle time is very difficult, so filling in some of that time is helpful.

~ Let your friend know you are praying for them. I can personally tell you I know when there is prayer being lifted up for me. Trust me-they know.

~ Let them know how you feel about them, that you love them and what they mean to you.
~ Have Fun! Laugh!

What to avoid~
~ Questions, questions, questions. It is very difficult for the person with cancer to continually be answering questions. Each time it brings the situation to the forefront of their minds and they have to then work very hard to "shake it".
It is understandable that you want to know what's going on and how your friend is "really" doing. I have been in the same position with many friends. If they have a blog or newsletter that is the best way to keep up with the details they want to share. Otherwise asking someone like their caretakers, or family would be a better alternative.

~ Don't ask them if they are going to die or how long they have to live. Yes, people do ask these questions. This is troubling enough with out having to answer that question. Remember, be positive and look forward with them. If they want to share that, they will.

~ please do not feel the need to tell your friend about everyone you know that has cancer and how horrible a time they had or that they did not make it. This really does not help. If the story does not have a happy ending it is not appropriate to share with your friend or their family members.

~ please avoid introducing your friend as "this is the one with cancer" or "cancer patient". Your friend is trying to live a normal life and their "normal" name works just fine :)

~ If your friend is in treatment, be encouraging about the beautiful person they are to you. Avoid focusing on what it may be doing to them physically. It is temporary. It is not helpful to your friend if you take one look at them and begin to cry or have a horrified look on your face. Just remember who that person is~ your friend.

Most people are affected by cancer in one way or another. I hope that sharing this is helpful to you and your friend should you ever be in this situation.

I know some of you are also survivors, family members, caretakers, etc. Your thoughts left in the "comments" section would be great to share on this subject from your own experiences.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

New Years 21 mile Bike Ride~

Today we did one of our favorite things. It is a 21 mile trail ride on our mountain bikes. The weather was perfect! We started riding this trail many years ago and I noticed today how easy it has become since we have started running. I used to struggle to make it to the 6 mile stop point and by mile 21 I was hobbling to the car. Thankfully we are past that part now :)

We like to go at all different times of the year as the beauty of the landscape is so different depending on the time of year. Texas, for the most part is ugly in the winter but out here there is a natural beauty that I love.
We always see different animals and wildlife. No snakes this time :) I did, however almost run over an armadillo. There was a large group of people out riding their horses today and we rode past bunch of cows.

We always enjoy seeing so many people out, riding bikes, horses, running, hiking, kayaking etc. We even ran in to a few we knew, including the headmaster and his wife ( the boys former English teacher) from high school. We rode the last 2 miles in with them and enjoyed visiting.

This stop was very cool. We parked our bikes and walked down to the creek where there was an old bridge, or what is left of it. It is the bridge that Bonnie and Clyde escaped on after robbing the Pilot Point bank~ as the story goes. All these years and we have just whizzed by on our bikes never knowing it was even there.

Famous Bonnie & Clyde bridge

This is a not so famous bridge but a pretty part of the ride.

We had a great time and a great start to a new year! I hope you all had a great day today too and pray for a safe and healthy 2009.


Related Posts with Thumbnails