Tuesday, June 4, 2013

What are you willing to give up?


I spent Sunday outside all day.  This blue chair came from my father's childhood farmhouse.  I love that its authentic, and even the blue chipped paint is decades old. 







It started sunny today- and I intended to go out and take photos later.  Ahhh, then I saw the black clouds forming as I turned to go, and instead grabbed my camera.  I had two minutes of sun till the grey overtook the skies once again.  No matter how dark, some rays were still seeping through.  





I started the oral sedation meds yesterday that Dr. Foster wanted me to try, an hour and 15 minutes before we left the house.  I expected to feel pretty foggy and sedated by the time I arrived at the door of the hospital.  

But I didn't.

So as we sat waiting to be called back, I took another pill.  Now for sure I expected it to hit me.

I sat for another 20 minutes before I was called back.  I thought, "this will be the test, standing up, when it usually hits like a ton of bricks."

But no.  Still just a distant calmness which was pleasant, but not the knock-down-drag-down I can't stay awake kind of feeling I expected.

Sigh.

I quickly changed my clothes as instructed and walked back to the mri room.  Its the most awake I've been in that room since the first time I was there unsedated 2/12 years ago.

And then I saw him.  One of the techs I've had several times before.  And when his opening words to me were, "you only have a 9 1/2 minute scan."  I nearly fell over, but only based on his words.

Thats it?

They told me an hour on the phone.  I was prepared to be in the tube for an hour.

He laughed, shrugged and said- nope- I just need you to lay still for the entire 9 1/2 minutes.  

No problem.  

I think trying to place an iv in my arm took nearly twice that long.

Finally I was tube worthy. 

Even though I was awake the entire time, I laid absolutely still, thanking God the entire time.  

When I went back to the radiation department, I still wasn't feeling my normal sedated self.  

We went over how everything would proceed.  Then the treatment consent was given to us and we were shown the part Dr. Foster filled in.  I don't know if I just psychologically couldn't listen to it all, or if sedation was starting to take effect.  But either way, Rick and I both know, despite the side effects, (hair loss, vision, impairment, ???) non-treatment is clearly not an option.  


“It's not hard to decide what you want your life to be about. What's hard, she said, is figuring out what you're willing to give up in order to do the things you really care about.” 
― Shauna NiequistBittersweet: Thoughts on Change, Grace, and Learning the Hard Way

It seems that with cancer- we give up some of the healthy parts of ourselves in sacrifice to the diseased parts of ourselves- so that the living parts of ourselves can go on.  



So the radiation nurse and I agreed to try 1 more pill after sensing I am not nearly sedated yet.  Then I laid down in a darkened room for half an hour.

Now I was starting to relax.  They walked me back to the PET/CT scanner I had been in the week prior.  

Then the techs began wrapping my face in warm plastic pieces to make my new mask.  The techs were wonderful about describing each bit to me and reassuring me I was doing fine.  

Easy. Peasy. Lemon. Squeezy.  

Mask made. Preplanning in the stages.  Day complete!

Rick drove me home and I promptly slept for the next 4 hours.  Sedation finally achieved. Smile.



Dr. Foster called again today.

The spot in the back of my brain that they were going to just watch?

After much deliberation by several doctors, we are going to go ahead and zap it now too.


I am so deeply appreciative of your prayers.  Every little thing that goes so smoothly in the midst of all the mess and the hard,  feels like something one of you has asked Him to see to, and He has.  
















39 comments:

  1. Praises that the scan was a "quickie" compared to what you were anticipating; prayers for my sweet friend...always.
    "Dear Lord...First and foremost of all, I praise You...I thank you for the wonderful and mighty God and Savior that You are. You know every need of Vicky and her dear family. I pray that you will intervene in a miraculous way in her body, Lord. I pray that You will take those cancer cells and remove them...every single cell, Lord. I praise Your Holy name and thank you for answering our prayers and hearing our wants and needs. Forgive me where I fail you, Lord. Amen."
    Love to you, Vicky...
    Jackie

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    1. Beautifully articulated prayer- thank you Jackie- it helps so much. I carry your prayers with me always. Love and blessings to you!

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  2. Sometimes those little things end up being wonderful, like 9 1/2 minutes, versus an hour, especially when the sedation hasn't kicked in.

    As always, Vicky, you are in my thoughts and prayers.

    PS: Wonderful photos and I LOVE THAT CHAIR from your father's childhood farmhouse!

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    1. Thank you Ms. A- its so true- the littlest things can be so grace-filled and satisfying. Thank you for all of your prayers and support- they truly keep me going!

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  3. all the way our Savior leads me, what have i to ask besides?
    who can doubt His tender mercy, who through life has been my guide?
    heavenly peace, divinest comfort,
    here by faith in Him to DWELL,
    for i know, whate'er befalls me, Jesus doeth ALL THINGS WELL.
    for i know, whate'er befalls me, Jesus doeth ALL THINGS WELL.

    this is what came to mind as i reflected on your experience. i believe you know with great intimacy, his peace and comfort, and i am so grateful that He is guiding you step by step through this next part of the road.

    love you!

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    1. So apropos- really- you have such a talent for that- I can tell its so ingrained in you :) Thank you friend- for all of it- it truly helps :)

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  4. Oh my goodness Vicky, I held my breath thinking that sedative wasn't going to work!!!! I'm so so happy the scan was only minutes. I will pray sweet one, pray about those sacrifices you're making with the new treatments...Love you to the moonxoxo

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    1. Robin- I know- me too! Who would have predicted any of this? Well certainly not me :) I think "embrace" is teaching me. Thank you for loving me like you do :)

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  5. Glad it all went well for you.
    Love the flowers and the chair with those flowers looks wonderful.:)

    xoxoxoxoxox

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    1. Thanks so much Vic- much love to you :)

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  6. I am so very glad that you feel all of the prayers-so glad!! I really do think of you everyday and you are always in my prayers!

    So glad you enjoyed some sunshine and really good nap ;)

    love you!
    xo

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    1. Tiffany- I am so appreciative for the good thoughts and prayers and I hope you know as well- that I think of you so often! Love and blessings to you sweet one!

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  7. Thinking of you, praying for you, wanting only good things for you.

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    1. Thank you Hilary- I think the same for you and am also hoping your mom is doing well too!

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  8. It's the littlest blessings that mean the most. I'll be away for a couple of weeks but know that you will be close in thoughts and in my prayers.

    Sending love and hugs!

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    1. Love and hugs to you Eileen- while I will miss you- you know I am always glad when my blog peeps go live life away from here for a time. You have my prayers for health and well being and as many joy-filled moments as possible!

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  9. Vicky...I know that you don't write from your heart so every one will say you are brave. But you are. Your honesty humbles me. When I say I think of you at least once a day with a prayer... I'm not kidding. You are a true inspiration to me.

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    1. Katie- truly- those words are such high praise and so genuine- thank you- they truly honor and humble me. xxoo

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  10. Beautiful photos, I just love that chair!!.. people pay big bucks to make chairs look like that! And how awesome that it was in your fathers childhood home. A part of him that beckons you to sit, rest, take comfort.



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    1. Thank you for the compliments on the chair- I have two of them and I just love them. Its a complete stroke of luck that they are just the way they are. And my Dad would love that I don't want to alter them in any way :)

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  11. Well, it appears that my resistance to drugs is rubbing off on you. :) I rejoice with you over the calm and the short MRI. So glad for that. And what a tru statement that we give up a healthy part of us to fix something else.

    That first picture with the scrumptious blue chair and plant is just stunning. Love the shabby chiqueness of it!

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    1. Thanks for the photo compliment- I was so pleased it turned out so well :) Yes- I didn't think of the resistance part but that is probably exactly what it is since I take that daily- rather silly I didn't even think of that.

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  12. That is quite a thought to ponder. Trust all will go well for you.

    Great chair!

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    1. Thanks Susan- it is a lot to ponder and I would guess you would have your own unique perspective adn thoughts on this... trusting along with you.

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  13. You've been through so much Vicky, but you can get through this new round one more time....you are so strong. I'll keep praying for you. Love your chair photo!

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    1. Thanks Lisa- I will carry those prayers with me through one more round- so grateful to have them!

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  14. "It seems that with cancer- we give up some of the healthy parts of ourselves in sacrifice to the diseased parts of ourselves- so that the living parts of ourselves can go on."

    What an excruciating place to be, to make those kinds of decisions, and yet I know that they come one at a time most of the time, and that is a good way to go...step by step, day by day, whatever is most urgent. The rest...can fall away. I'm rejoicing with you in the successes of this latest round, Vicky! XXOO, Roxnae

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    1. That is so true Roxane- the rest can and does fall away. Yes- tender, excruciating, fragile maybe- but real and still surrounded by grace. xxoo

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  15. Sometimes all I can say is I love you sweet sister. And continue to whisper your name to the One who holds you

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    1. Kelly~ well all you can say~truly says so much and I take it with me always :)

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  16. you are so strong...so amazing. my prayers are with you once again...actually, they've never left your side !!
    xo

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    1. Beth- thank you-I have felt them for so long and continue to be honored that those special prayers have never left my side :) xxoo

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  17. Vicky, you and your family are often in my thoughts. You have my prayers and deepest admiration. Reading your words inspires me and I am touched by your honesty and perspective. I am wishing you continued blessings and love.
    Cindy in TX

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    1. Cindy- how very sweet of you to leave such encouraging and heartfelt words - thank you- its deeply felt.

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  18. Like all of your supporters, my prayers are always with you. I pray that the treatment will be effective, and that you will continue to be buoyed by all the love, support and prayers that surround you and your family!

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    1. Thanks so much Steph~ love seeing you here~ that alone buoys me :)

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  19. Prayers and prayers and more prayers with a big dose of love and hugs sent your way xo Thinking always of you

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  20. Don't you love your doctor's exactness--nine and half minutes?! Makes me smile. And I bet it wasn't half a second longer!

    Your chair--such beauty in the chipped blue paint. That's reality, isn't it? We're all chipped, in one way or another. Made me decide not to paint my grandmother's old table on the front porch.

    Vicky, your voice. Your writing has such rhythm to it. It's something that can't be taught. Neither can writing with such honesty.

    I'm praying for you.

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  21. Wow, Vicky. This says SO much already. Can't even IMAGINE getting through the "tube" for 1 minute, let alone 10. You're a stud. They'd have to hit me with a stun gun and an elephant tranquilizer. Praying as I read and as I read comments, too. I know I'm going to find out more so on I go but very mindful of your attitude in the face of changes that are deep places requiring great buoyancy. Praying for that and for a life raft when you need total rest and a complete break so you can just lay on your back, be rocked on the deep water, and look up at the sun.

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I welcome what you have to say. Thanks for taking the time to grace me with your thoughts and words!

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