Monday, December 28, 2009

Footloose and "Cancer" Free

It's official, I am cancer free! The pathology reports came back saying it had all been contained in the uterus and nothing had spread to the ovaries or lympnodes yet! That means no further treatment like chemo! YAY! I'm so excited to be a cancer survivor!!

It's also official that we are TEXANS again! We moved on the 20th to The Woodlands and I love being back! I'm still getting used to the area, but I think I'll get the hang of it soon! We live about 10 miles from "town", as Chase likes to call it! It's quiet out here and we can actually see the stars! I-45 is right down the street so when we need something, it's right there! Our house is adorable! We've already got it pretty settled in, although you'd never know by looking at all of the boxes in the garage!

2 views of our Living Room!

Zoren's Room - she picked her comforter and curtains all by herself!

Our dining room - I think it's time to upgrade to a bigger table

My Family Wall - I'm sure it will grow over time!
Once our bedroom gets completed, I'll post some pics of it! :)


I haven't started back to work yet which is both enjoyable and aggravating! I need to get in touch with my Dr. to see if he will release me even though my follow up appointment isn't until the 5th! Crossing my fingers! On the same note, I've applied to Conroe ISD also hoping to hear back regarding some positions I'm interested in! That would be an awesome schedule not only for summer vaca with Zoren, but also for the adoption process! Speaking of that...based on the cost and requirements, I think I'm leaning heavily toward Catholic Charities for adoption. We can't apply until we've been married for 2 years so you better believe that on Sept 13, 2010 we will be putting in our application! :) I'm so anxious to get the whole process started!

Christmas was great this year! I not only got to see my family, but it only took us 2 hours to get there! I'm going to love being so close to everyone! Especially right now because my PawPaw isn't doing very well and being closer makes it easier for me to spend time with him! Be sure to say some prayers for him - he's a fighter and we want him around as long as possible!!!

Well, I'm going to get some sleep and I'll update again soon! If I don't talk to you before then...have a very happy, safe and blessed New Year!!!!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

"Jingle Bells"

I had my surgery on Monday. I'm so happy it's over, but I really wish I had done it earlier! Chase was able to be here for my surgery which is wonderful...and which also means I don't have to drive to TX by myself next week! We'll probably leave on Saturday! I hate feeling useless! I'm still a little groggy, but I actually slept ok last night which is a huge improvement from sleeping in a hospital bed where every 2 hours someone was waking me up to take my vitals! My incisions don't really hurt so I'm going to try to lay off the pain meds for now. The dr. did find some scar tissue on my bladder and took care of that so that means I'm at home with a cathetar until Friday! YUCK! It's obnoxious to carry this thing around all day!

Overall, I think everything is going pretty well. I'm not really thinking too much about WHAT happened and what will never happen, which I guess is a good thing. I'd much rather be pissed off about a pee bag than my lack of a baby maker! :) They should have my path report back sometime today or tomorrow to let me know if they got all of the cancer. The dr. said from what he could see, it looks good!! YAY for CANCER FREE!! My sister said she'll make me a shirt that says "Footloose and Cancer Free!"

My main concern is for Chase. He's having to figure out all of the moving stuff all by himself. Like I said, I hate feeling useless! I'll have to plan something special for him once we get settled in Texas. I'm sure by Saturday, I'll feel a little better...at least to take a 12 hour drive in a uhaul!!!! I'll be back in about 3 weeks for a follow up appt and then I'll just start seeing my dr. in Houston for regular check ups!

Anyone who is reading this and is interested in helping, we could probably use some help unloading the truck once we are in Houston since I still won't be able to lift anything! Call me or email me if you can help!

I'll update as I get more info! Thank you so much for all of your thoughts and prayers! It works!

Friday, December 4, 2009

La Isla Bonita

Wow...I've been such a slacker. Usually I pop on to write a bunch of nonsense, but obviously, I haven't really had the patience or time to sit and write. Ok...so I had my appointment with the Dr. to discuss what to expect. They gave me my day before regime (FUN STUFF, let me tell ya) and of course, what to expect after the surgery. They will be making 5 small incisions that should result in minimal pain afterward (the NP said I shouldn't need the pain meds after a day or so). I must be really careful with lifting and stuff like that, but otherwise, not too bad. My mom will get here on the 13th and stay until the 17th. All of this would be fine EXCEPT Chase won't be here for my surgery because.........

We OFFICIALLY got the offer to move back to Texas. I would be REALLY excited, but with the surgery and the holidays coming up, it's really stressin me out! We'll be living near The Woodlands and Chase will be there on Monday to find a house! He'll be back at the end of next week, pack up the uhaul and then drive down again by the 13th...just in time for my mom to get in town! My only concern is that I won't have anyone to ride with me the next week (Christmas week) and I HATE driving by myself...especially for 13 hours! YUCK! But I'll deal with it b/c we finally get to move back to TEXAS!!!!! HEEEEHAW!

I still wanted to have my surgery here b/c it was planned and I can get it over with! I'll have to start my follow ups at MD Anderson so I'm grateful I already have a dr. there!!! OH...so I had some testing done for Lynch Syndrome due to my age and my diagnosis and my tests all came back NEGATIVE!! YAY! Otherwise, I would have been at a higher risk of other cancers including breast and colon! WHEW!!!! I'm truly relieved!!!

Well, I need to keep on packing or else we'll be here forever! I'll update with more info on the house, move, surgery, etc soon!!!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

"Livin' on a Prayer"

I set my appointment. Surreal. December 14 I will be cancer free (hopefully)...December 14 I will never be able to carry my own baby. Hmm... Surreal. This is not the end of my life. I still have my family, my husband, my job, my health. I'm so lucky. No, I'm so blessed. God has such wonderful plans for all of us. I have cancer - and that sucks - but it's curable - and that's awesome. All of my worry and concern I have I must give to Him. I'm not supposed to worry if I'm lifting my worries to the Lord! I still get sad, though. I'm human. My mom is going to try to come stay a few days when I have my surgery. The Dr. says I should only be out of work for 2 weeks so I planned it to be right around Christmas since I was already taking time off to travel to Texas. I have decided to have my surgery here - for the sake of time and travel. I have an appointment tomorrow to discuss what to expect and all that jazz. I'm not nervous about the surgery itself...I'm nervous about how I'm going to handle it emotionally. I hope I can keep it under control!


The CMAs are in town! I keep saying how I can't believe we haven't really seen any celebrities (except Taylor Swift at Blockbuster and Keith Urban at Starbucks), but I suppose it helps if we get out a little more!!!! LOL!!! I love downtown Nashville, it's a shame we don't head down there more often! One day I might miss it...might! :)

Ok...I'm going to pop in a movie and get ready for a great day off tomorrow with my Chase! I'll update when I get some info from the Dr. tomorrow!!!!

Friday, October 30, 2009

"Tiny Dancer"

Apparantly MD Anderson had not received my most recent biopsy slide and had based the decision of my surgery on the pathology reports. I got a phone call last Thursday from the dr. saying that they had requested my slides from Tennessee because the final pathology report was not clear as the grade my cancer was after the Megace treatment. It mentioned that it looked higher, but is not able to say which grade. It was assumed a grade 2 since it had originally been 1-2. Yesterday the dr. called me again and said that they had recieved my slides and had their pathologists look at the slides to get a more definite answer. It came back as a grade 3! Much worse than we had expected. Regardless, the only treatment is a hysterectomy. I had already prepared myself for it, so the news was a little shocking, but no more upsetting than the first time I heard that news. Life is funny sometimes...not haha, though!

So we've been talking about houses and babies and it just all got very overwhelming to me. I mentioned it to Chase and he said that he would rather us find a house to rent for now and focus on the "kiddo"!!! I love that decision! I'm still gaining some information, but of course, part of it depends on where we are by the time we are ready to apply for adoption.

This past year has been so crazy, but I think we have handled everything pretty well! God is amazing and he speaks to me everyday! I am anxious to see what He has in his plans for us!

Monday, October 19, 2009

"Tears in Heaven"

Today was my MD Anderson appointment. I didn't expect a miracle, but I had to at least check out my options. First of all...MD Anderson is the best hospital I have ever been to! It's almost IMPOSSIBLE to get lost (and I can usually manage to get lost) and EVERYONE there is so incredibly nice! I loved it! My Dr. was fantastic! He met briefly with me to do an exam and then brought us to the conference room (me, Chase and my mom). He had reviewed my slides and test and whatever and it seems that my most recent biopsy did in fact read Endometrial Cancer, Stage 1, Grade 2! No grade 1 anymore. The megace I was on for 3 months had no affect on the cancer which actually progressed a little bit. I know I had already been told that, but I needed to hear it from someone else.

There is a clinical study being done on women with pre-cancerous and/or Stage 1, Grade 1 cancer where they insert an IUD and test the results - which have all been pretty good (regressing). I no longer have Grade 1. That puts me in a very unfortunate position. At this time, there is no "pill" type of treatment for anything beyond Grade 1. Let me back up real quick and give a little lesson in staging and grading, for those who don't know!

Stage I - confined to the uterine lining
Stage II - moves to the cervix
Stage III - vaginal, cervical and uterine
Stage IV - moves outside the uterus into other organs ie. liver, lungs, etc.

Within any of these stages, the cells will have a grade...

Grade 1 - normal shaped cells compacting together
Grade 2 - the cells are compacted and losing their shape
Grade 3 - the cells have no rhyme or reason; no shape and a bit of a mess

Ok...so I have Stage 1 (which is good), Grade 2 (not so good)! Like I said, they have no "pill" treatment for anything after Grade 1, therefore the only treatment for me is a hysterectomy. I know that's what my first doctor wanted to do, but he didn't tell me WHY!??!! You can't just take out my baby maker and not tell me WHY!!! Now I understand...it SUCKS....but I understand. It's to the point where I need to look out for my well being and my survival. My Dr. was so sympathetic and really understanding. He still seemed a bit thrown by my age (being about 20 years younger than the average End. Cancer patient) and health (pretty darn healthy), but said this is really the only option before it progresses too far.

So I will go home and think it all over. He didn't seem to be in a huge rush, but of course, I need to figure something out soon. I will definitely have my surgery at MD Anderson - I loved that place (as much as you can love a cancer hospital...LOL)!!!

I firmly believe God speaks to us through the obstacles and blessings we encounter in our lives. This is my big obstacle. I'm not supposed to have my own baby - maybe I'm supposed to save the life of a baby who needs loving parents. If anyone has any adoption information or knows of someone for us to talk to, I'd appreciate any information!

Thank you for your prayers. Even though it was not the answer I wanted, I know God listens and he has a fabulous plan for us! After I have a little "feel sorry for myself" time, I'll start preparing myself for our next adventure! I'm so lucky to have my supportive and loving family and my wonderful husband! I love all of you! This story is not over - I'll definitely keep posting as more information comes up! Good night!!!

Friday, October 16, 2009

"Itsy Bitsy Spider"

I giggle a little whenever I see responses to my blog that say I'm brave and what a positive outlook I have. I do, I don't doubt that, but man...you have no idea how hard that is! I hope that I can be, how should I say it...influential, I guess! I just know that there are millions of other horrible things that could be experienced and I'm so blessed to only have this little tiny insignificant disease to deal with!!! Oh I have my days...more than I'd like! I have days where all I want to do is cry. I have days where I think the total worst case scenario could happen. I have days where I try to imagine not ever having children. But I also have days where I see our family growing with kids. I have days where I've imagined helping in the research and cure of endometrial cancer. I have days where I've beat this thing and I get to be a cancer survivor!

7 months into this thing, it's all still very surreal. I tend to focus a lot on the children factor and not so much on the disease itself. I have cancer. That is so strange to me. Mine is not to the point of life threatening, but it's cancer. It's a disease eating at my body. I don't feel anything though. I'm not in pain, I'm not weak and tired, I don't feel ill. I have no symptoms of being sick at all. None. It's so surreal. That's been my word lately. Surreal. An out of body experience. Like this isn't happening to me. Weird. I think that's why I giggle when people comment on my bravery. I'm not entirely brave, I'm just disconnected. And I also know that there is no other way to take this kind of diagnosis than to fight. I have to fight - there is no other option.

My good friend Heidi is flying to Washington DC on November 8 to run in the Gynocological Cancer awareness run! I'm so proud of her and what she is running for! I wish I could be there with her, but with the possibility of flying back and forth to Houston, it just wasn't in the cards! I hope she knows what an impact she is making!!! I would love to find a more localized organiztion that supports gynocological cancer. It covers so many types of cancer that women suffer from. Endometrial cancer is not as rare as we think it is...more and more women are being diagnosed and the awareness is obsolete. I would have never even known it existed until my dr. diagnosed me - especially since it's a cancer that isn't tested for until later in life! I'm very interested in creating, helping with or donating time to any organiztion that may support gynocological cancer so if anyone knows of anything, let me know!!!! Whew..that was a bit of a rant! LOL!

Well, my appointment with Dr. Sood is next Monday at 11:30am at MD Anderson! I'm exctied, nervous and anxious all wrapped into one! I'll definitely be updating after my appointment!!! Til then.....

Friday, October 9, 2009

"2 Legit 2 Quit"

My face is sooo broken out, I've been sick to my stomach on and off for the past 3 weeks, my boobs are sore and I was 2 weeks late (which only lasted 3 days anyway)! The girls at work keep telling me to take a pregnancy test, but I know it can't be! We have sooo many things against us right now, it would truly be a miracle of God if we were pregnant - and it would really save us some money! LOL!!! Maybe I'm having one of those psychological things...where I want to be pregnant so I'm making my body think I am. No....I'm not that obsessive about it...or nuts!! :)

I'm home early from work today and I'll be home early tomorrow too! That would usually be a great thing, but Chase closes tonight and the weather is HORRIBLE!!! We have a tornado watch until 5pm. Tornados scare the crap out of me! We are on the 3rd floor and I can only imagine what would happen if one hit us! EEK! Chase and I will usually truck it to Walmart or Bed Bath and Beyond when we have a watch b/c we figure we would be way safer there than here! :)

Ok...enough wasting time! I'm gonna try to be productive and maybe organize some stuff around the house! OOOO...maybe some remodeling!!! :)

I'm sure I'll have some updates in a couple of weeks!!!

Friday, September 25, 2009

"Blue Suede Shoes"

I finally set up my appointment today with MD Anderson! Rosaline, my patient access person, is awesome! Poor girl - I called her like 3 times to ask questions!!! :) So I'm meeting with Dr. Sood on Monday, October 19 at 11:30am! We will fly in early Sunday and will probably stay in Port Neches and drive to Houston on Monday morning! I believe it is a 2 day evaluation, so we won't be back home until Tuesday night! I'm nervous and excited all wrapped into one! I just don't know what to expect!!! I'm praying that he has some alternatives for me!!!

So I'm trying really hard to get more involved with Gilda's Club, and apparantly I'm really bad at remembering stuff! LOL!!! They have so many great events and I put them on the calendar then totally forget! I'd love to get more involved with the American Cancer Society too...I need to stop talking and just do it! :) I'm very sorry to say that I don't think we'll be able to run the 5k in DC for the Gynocological Cancer Society!!! I really wish we could, but if I'll be flying back and forth to Houston, I just don't think we can :(

I'll update as soon as I figure out more...or just to ramble!! :)

Saturday, September 19, 2009

"Kiss the Girl"

I finally spoke with someone from MD Anderson on Thursday! She got all my info and I sent over my insurance stuff and my records! I'm hoping to hear something on Monday regarding an appointment! YAY...I'm excited to finally get the ball rolling!

So today Chase and I were running some errands and as always, I start the most random conversation with him. I remember hearing from so many married people "marriage is overrated" or "once you get married, there's no more sex"! Really? Seriously?? The only thing I get from that is that whoever you are that makes these statements must really not like or appreciate your spouse! I can't imagine getting to the point in our marriage where I just don't care if we see eachother or actually have a married relationship! And yes, we have only been married a year, but what's the point in staying married or ever GETTING married if all you are going to do is take it for granted? I want us to be that cute little 90 year old couple still holding hands! I know that I probably had some far fetched romantinc ideals before I actually got married, but I love being with my husband and I love sharing experiences with him. I don't want that to change! I also understand that once we start a family and life gets a little more hectic, it will be hard to keep up the "on the fly" lifestyle we have now, but I will never take my husband for granted or the life we have together. Before I met Chase, I was at a point in my life where I had accepted the idea that I may never get married and I was ok with that! I have a great family and wonderful group of friends...my life was great! Meeting Chase just put the icing on the cake and I will always remind myself how blessed I am for that!!!!

Well, my rant has come to an end! Now I need to pack and get ready to head to Hotel Preston! I decided we needed to celebrate our anniversary and his birthday (tomorrow) so I got us a room in town and we're meeting some friends downtown later tonight! I love reasons to celebrate!

Monday, September 14, 2009

"Hangin' Tough"



We celebrated our 1 year anniversary yesterday! Unfortunately, I had to be at work that evening for an event I was heading up, but nonetheless...I've had a wonderful year of marriage with the most wonderful man in the world! We actually spent most of the day cleaning the house and then eating a piece of our wedding cake! It was NOT good, to say the least! But we are so excited to have extra room in the freezer now! LOL!! :)


I finally spoke with my oncologists office today and let them know that I am holding off on the surgery until my second opinion. They seemed OK with that! I'm actually very excited to set up my appointment at MD Anderson - I guess I'm just anxious to hear what they have to say and I get to ask all of my questions! Having a hysterectomy is so definite. It means I will absolutely never ever ever have children of my own! Yuck! I can't even fathom that right now!

I want to give a quick CONGRATS to my friend Kristin who just found out that she will be the mother of a little girl AND a little boy in February! YAY!!!! One...I mean two more reasons to move back to Dallas! :)

Someone today said to me that God can't make life easy for everyone. He will throw curve balls at some people to test their faith which makes them appreciate the outcome!


So I've decided to write a book! I've ALWAYS wanted to write a book, but everytime I get started, it starts to fade out!!! I told Chase that I'm going to turn this blog into a book but in order for it to work out, I need a very happy ending! :) LOL!!! So if anyone knows someone who publishes books, let me know and in about a year or so, I may actually have it all done! And ALL OF YOU have to buy it...ok??? LOL!!! (This is my sample cover...hahahaha)!!!

Well, Chase is out of town until Wednesday which means I'm going to put in a chick flick and head to bed with my puppy! Have a good one! Keep on prayin!!!!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

"Electric Youth"

I got a phone call yesterday from Dr. Numnum - I was at work, so I didn't answer it! It was a little odd that he personally called me. I haven't called back! Until I have an appointment at MD Anderson, I don't want to really say anything to him! I don't know why...I'm just weird like that! I DID have to call his office again on Tuesday to see why I hadn't recieved my records yet! She's sending them out again so I'm hoping to get them by Saturday so I can get this ball rolling! I feel like I'm being TOO relaxed and laid back about this whole thing! I need to set my appt so I can figure out everything!

So I'm a member of a Facebook group called Women and Men Supporting Endometrial Cancer! I asked the question of is it even possible to get pregnant and carry a baby with endometrail cancer!?!?! FINALLY I got a response! A woman replied saying it can absolutely happen, but I need to be sure and find a OB/GYN who is familiar with these cases so that I can be watched closely! Of course that was the answer I wanted to hear - I'm just not sure how solid it is! It's the #1 question on the top of my "ask the dr." list!!!

So 3 days until Chase and I celebrate our 1 year anniversary! Even if we don't celebrate BIG, I'm just excited to have him in my life! I'm so blessed!!!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

"Love of a Lifetime"

2 weeks until our 1 year anniversary! Can you believe it??? I feel like we've been together forever - taken in the very best possible way! I couldn't have asked God for a better man to spend my life with! We were totally meant to find eachother and I love him more and more everyday! Ok...enough mush for today! Have a good one!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

"Smells Like Teen Spirit"

I want to have a baby! I say that so casually! I was watching "Private Practice" tonight with all those pregnanat women and I walked into the living room and told Chase that I wanted to have a baby! HAHA! It sounds so funny - for several reasons! First, because I never thought I would say something like that and truly truly mean it! A little over 2 years ago, a baby would have never even crossed my mind! And second, usually when a woman makes that announcement, there is a slight pause; maybe some hesitation, followed by a discussion. Not in this household. Chase's response was "then let's have a baby"! I love him. I love that he is so positive about this whole experience! He went on to say "we'll have a baby, we just don't know how it will happen yet"! Have a mentioned that I love him?! I also love that he is so logical. He needs facts and results - I tend to live off of emotions and "what if" - without him, I would be a total mess...more than I already am! I should probably look into this logic thing! I did mention that I love my husband, right??

On a different note, today was a great day! We both had off work and actually had a chance to sleep in! It was well deserved! We cleaned the house and then went bowling and grocery shoppping! I know it doesn't sound exciting, but it's those little things that I absolutely adore about being married! LOL!! Today was a great day!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

"Step by Step"

Up to this point I've had a lot of confidence in my oncologist! He has always been very upfront and honest with me and since he was the expert, I've trusted him! When he called last week to give me the biopsy results, he mentioned that he wanted to see me and Chase as soon as possible. Since then, I've recieved 2 phone calls from his nurse. The first was a voicemail asking me to call back and the second was at work. The nurse said "Dr. Numnum wanted me to touch base with you and see about setting up your surgery"! I was completely taken back! WHAT??? We haven't even gone to meet with him and he wants me to schedule my SURGERY!?!?! I don't think so! I totally understand that he is an oncologist and when there is a 90% cure rate for my cancer, he wants to do what needs to be done to get rid of it! I, on the other hand, have a really hard time believing that a hysterectomy is the ONLY path to take. At 30 years old, that seems REALLY extreme!

With that being said, I've decided to pursue MD Anderson! I have an aunt in contact with a doctor and I had my records released to me today from my current doctor. Now I just have to wait to set an appointment and get my flight! We are trying to make it to where Chase can come with me - at least for this first visit! I need him there not only for support, but also to remember everything that is said b/c when I get overwhelmed, I always forget the important stuff! I'm hopeful, but not expecting a miracle. Unfortunately, I think the blow from the first round of treatment has soured my optimism a bit! I still believe that this is all part of God's plan for me! I trust Him with all of my heart and soul and I know that he would never give me more than I can handle! I know that one way or another Chase and I will have our children together - biological or adopted!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

"Somewhere Over the Rainbow"

Today has been a good day! I slept great, watched some tv and now I'm getting ready to start cleaning the house (I'm obviously off work today)!!! Chase's plane gets in around 6pm and I can't wait to see him! I've kept myself from googling anything this morning - it obviously doesn't help! I keep thinking about how blessed I am and that my life will be just as full and wonderful whether we can have our own children or not! I know there is always adoption - there are a lot of babies who need loving homes and I know that Chase and I would be fabulous parents! Anyway, I'm going to keep this short, but just wanted to let you guys know that I'm going to be ok and thank you for thinking about me!!!!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

"Bad Day"

So far today has sucked! Yesterday was great - I was busy all day so I had little to no time to even think! I like those days! I woke up early this morning, made coffee, walked Preston, took a shower and (here's where I screwed up) got online! I decided to google endometrial cancer and pregnancy! Every article I found, the women had a hysterectomy! I understand that it's a 90% cure with a hysterectomy, but what about those of us who want a baby!? There HAS to be another way! And then I kept reading articles saying that it is impossible to carry a baby when you have this type of cancer! There were no reasons to support so it is going on my list of questions.

My sucky part of the day (and it's only 9:45am) came when it ALL just hit me. I SERIOUSLY may never be a mother! NEVER! Never ever ever ever!!!! That sucks. I can't even stop crying enough to blow dry my hair!!!!! I'm pathetic, I know! I eventually have to pull it together because I have to be at work by 11am!! :) Maybe if I get it all out today, I'll be fine going forward!! I just really hope I don't become one of those people who can't be happy for my friends and family when they have a baby! I pray I don't become bitter! I don't think I can, to be honest, but it worries me!

I also have to keep in mind, a hysterectomy is not the end of life! I still have my fabulous family and my supportive, beautiful and awesome husband! I'm very blessed to be surrounded by the people in my life and to have the things I have! And there is always adoption! God's plan could possibly be that we are supposed to adopt a beautiful baby and give it a loving home! That thought helps me to really get through this! Ok...I'm done! I need to dry my tears and fix my hair! LOL!!! I apologize for the rant, but that's why I created this blog! :) Thank you again for your prayers and thoughts! I'm truly blessed!

Monday, August 10, 2009

"Ring of Fire"

It was about 2:30 pm today whenever Dr. Numnum called my cell phone - and of course, it was the 5 minutes I was away from it. I called back immediately, alot more nervous than I thought I would be. When he began his sentence with "unfortunately...", I knew there was nothing good afterward. The test results were back and said that it was still cancer at a grade 2 (the first biopsy placed it as a grade 1-2)! He was very upset that the Megace didn't work and said it's not likely to work even if I try it for another 3 months. I'd rather not anyway. He wants to see me and Chase as soon as possible to talk things over and probably try to convince me to have a hysterectomy. My mom's doctor had told her about another treatment at MD Anderson so she is trying to get in touch with him to get the name of the treatment so I can tell my oncologist. I don't want to put my life in danger because of my selfishness to have children, but I also don't want to give in to a hysterectomy when there could be something else out there!

All I want to do at this point is cry. I don't want to start thinking about alternatives or MD Anderson or a hysterectomy. I just want to cry and get this whole frustrating feeling out of my system. It makes me sad. Each day my chance to have my very own child gets slimmer. That's sad and all I want to do is cry! I'll get over it and move on...probably by tomorrow. Well, I have to - real life doesn't stop for sadness. I love that Chase is the rational one. I'm definitely the emotional one. He thinks that we should get his reversal and have kids anyway and then when we are done, have the hysterectomy and get it over with. I love that idea!

I'm not a basket case today, though, so I'm happy about that. I know that sitting around in misery all day feeling sorry for myself won't get me anywhere. But a good cry sure does feel good! :) Like I said, I'll be fine and I'll keep praying because I know God has a bigger and better plan for us! I encourage those of you who are praying for us to continue because this is certainly not over!

Thank you so much to everyone who blew up my phone today LOL!!! I truly appreciate it and I love all of you!

I'll update as soon as we have more information!!!!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

"Faith"

SOOOOO today was the day! For the biopsy, that is! It was, to say the least, uncomfortable! But totally worth it WHEN it comes back negative! Everyone was very positive today (the MA, NP and DR) so that made me feel a little more at ease! We talked a bit about the different outcomes. At the least we would like to see some sort of regression - to hyperplasia and at the most we want it to be in remission! He was asking if I wanted him to start setting up referrals for a urologist so that's gotta be a good sign, right? Of course, right now this is all just talk b/c we won't know which direction to go until we find out the results! He said he was able to get a really good sample and is sending it to the lab today. Results probably won't be available until Monday or Tuesday, though!

I will definitely update once we have some real news to share! Until then, pray pray pray!!!

Love you all!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

"Time after Time"

My follow up dr. appointment is this Thursday which means my 3 months of treatment are up!! I have my moments when I'm nervous, but I just keep telling myself "it's in remission...it's in remission"! I'm not entirely sure what's happening at this appointment - either an in office biopsy or setting up the biopsy (my preference is to be knocked out...I'd rather not feel a thing)! Any and all last minute prayers are welcome! Once we see how this thing is going, we start visiting vasectomy reversal doctors! YAY! I'll just feel better knowing that all of our obstacles are out of the way so baby Dodson has a chance of becoming a reality!

I'll keep you guys updated as soon as I find something out! The power of prayer!!!!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

"6th Avenue Heartache"

So it's been over 2 months since the diagnosis and I have only really cried one time - and that was the day I found out! Right now, as I sit here looking at my friend's and family's pictures of their kids, it hit me. Hard! Like...I can hardly breathe! I'm surprised I can type because my eyes are so puffy! It's so unfair! Everything about this whole stupid situation is so UNFAIR! I can't understand why there are so many people out there who take for granted that they can pop out a baby whenever they want and I have to worry about if I will EVER have a chance to be a mom!! UGH!!!!!!!!!!! Chase and I both agree that we would not want to have a baby until we move back to Texas, but what if that can't happen?!? What if the news I get in August is bad? I TOTALLY believe that God has a plan for us - and I will never disregard that, but what if???

This entry probably doesn't make sense at all, but this little breakdown was only going to be calmed by writing! I'm so sorry for the rant!!!!

On the flip side - I've become MUCH better at taking care of myself and getting my medication on a better schedule! I just hope it pays off!! Man, I am so happy Chase is not home to see this melt down - it will be our little secret! LOL!!!

Love you all!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

"A Change Would Do You Good"

I have decided that I need to start getting my life into shape! The one thing I've begun is simply going to Church and making God part of my daily life! Of course, I have my slip ups, but overall, I feel more in touch with my Christianity than ever before - but definitely still working on a few things! I just assume that as long as I put my trust in God, everything will work out just fine! He would never give me too much to handle!

The other think I'm starting is to get in better physical shape! I attended my first weight watchers meeting today so I am very very excited about that! From the past, I KNOW it works, I just need to have the will power to keep it going! I just want to be in the best shape and health possible when it comes time to have a baby! As some of you may know, Chase and I are distributors of MonaVie
(http://www.monavie.com/). MonaVie is an all natural fruit juice designed to give you up to 13 servings of fruit per day, in just 4 oz (let me know if you want more info on this - it's great) - ANYWAY, I've been ALOT more adamant about taking my 4oz per day to ensure that I'm at least getting my nutrients! So far I've noticed a huge increase in energy and I sleep so much better! I'm really praying that all of the precautions and steps I am taking will result in an overall healthier lifestyle!!! I'm excited to see what the future holds!

On a side note - I'm almost through with my first month of treatment (Megace pills) which means only 2 months to go! I'm so nervous!!!!! OH - and my new member meeting at Gilda's Club was great! I wasn't able to make it to the support group meeting on Monday, but hopefully will make it on the 15th!

So I went home this past weekend (Port Neches) for my brother's graduation - along with my cousin's baby shower and a friend's wedding! WHEW!!!! I had a great time, but realized how much I really miss Chase when we are away from eachother (I know - PUKE!!!! LOL!)! But it was so good to see everyone and really spend time with my family! June 18-21 we head back to Texas, but this time for Chase's family reunion! Fun times!!!!

Me and my baby brother, Ryan!

Me and My Bella (I swear she could be my child)!!

KATELEE!!!!!!

Me and My Kylee!!!


My favorite Maw Maw!!!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

"All the Small Things"

So tomorrow night I am attending a new member meeting at Gildas Club here in Nashville (gildasclubnashville.org). It's a cancer support group founded by Gene Wilder after Gilda Radner died of cancer! I almost didn't join because I just felt like my cancer wasn't the same as others - I almost felt...silly! But then I realized that if nothing else, I could be a support to others and I love volunteering and just being a viable part of society! I'll definitely keep an update on how that is going!
After the meeting, Chase and I are heading out to a cookout with my friend Cheri! I'm excited when we actually go out with other people! You'd think that after 1.5 years of living here, we'd have a much better social life than we do! Good thing we REALLY like eachother because we spend ALOT of time together! I was also looking into the Junior League of Nashville just to help out in the community and meet some people in the area, but that may have to wait a while!!



I (all by myself ) am taking a trip home (Port Neches) next weekend for my little brother's graduation! I CANNOT believe he is graduating and going off to college! He received a full scholarship to Lamar University to play football - can you tell I'm a proud big sister!!?!?! I'm just truly excited to see everyone and spend time with family and NOT running around doing wedding stuff like every other time I have been there!!! I am flying with a buddy pass, so pray that I get on a flight early enough to make it to the graduation...oh, and to get on a flight that gets me back here in time for work on Monday!





Wednesday, May 13, 2009

"Stand By Me"

So I started my treatment last week and as I'm coming up on my 1 week, I thought I'd do a little update! I TOTALLY see how this could cause weight gain! I am hungry all the time! And not like "i'm bored" hungry, like my stomach is literally growling! I keep a big jug of water with me at work so I just chug it to suppress it a bit! Chase and I started running again yesterday to offset any splurges I may find myself in! I'm not sure if it's the medication, but I feel a bit more irritable and emotional! Yea, we'll just blame that on the medication! LOL! Otherwise, I feel great and I'm in good spirits about beating this thing! I'm also religiously taking my Mona Vie so at least I'm getting my fruit servings for the day!!!

I'm so excited that I keep getting feedback about the 5K/half marathon in DC! No hotel or flight info has been posted! Chase and I have both decided that we are 99% sure we are going! We've talked about taking a trip to DC, so what better time than now...and for a good cause! I'll let everyone know when we register! It's $30 to register and I'm sure we can find a hotel to share and cut down on costs! Has anyone ever flown to DC? I found (online) that flying into Maryland is bit cheaper!

I will be heading home to Texas in a couple of weeks for my brothes high school graduation! I cannot believe he's all grown up - and going to college! I keep a picture of him from when he was 6 years old on my fridge! OH goodness...I'm getting old!! :)

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

"Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head"

So...my appointment was at 1pm today so Chase met me there to get the final say from the oncologist! After waiting close to an hour (we didn't actually see the dr. until about 2pm and both of us had to get back to work), we finally had a seat in his office and laid everything on the table. He showed us the 2 pathology reports done by 2 different doctors. Both had the same result...endometrial cancer grade 1-2. He said that because it was primarily grade 1, he would still leave the option for hormone treatment on the table. Of course, up to this point, I had really erased the "other" option from my mind, although deep down, I knew it could still happen! There are very little risks involved with the treatments. There is a 50-60% chance of the the treatment - Megace - working on this kind of case. To me, that sounded worth a try. The cancer is still slow growing, so there should be no devastating results for trying it for 3 months to see if it works. The biggest side effects include blood clots and an increased appetite! UGH! Seriously, the last thing I need is to gain weight! Anyway, he gave me the prescription and if I had my insurance card with me, I would be starting treatment tomorrow! So now it will start on Thursday or Friday!!! I take 4 pills, 4 times a day for 3 months and then I go back for a biopsy on August 6! In the mean time, we will be visiting some urologists to get some detailed information on the reversal situation. This way, WHEN the cancer is gone after 3 months we can get his surgery done and get started on this baby thing!!!

After the appointment Chase made a comment that has kinda stuck with me. It almost seems like he Megace treatment will "hold off" the cancer, assuming it will work, but eventually, I'll have to have a hysterectomy! I guess it's like with any cancer treatment though, it will help move the cancer to remission, but nothing guarantees it to go away forever! All I want is one...ok...maybe 3 kids...and then I'll be able to handle the hysterectomy idea a little better!!!!

I guess my next few updates will be focused on my reaction to the treatment and any information we find out about Chase!!! Til then....

Friday, May 1, 2009

"I'd Like to Teach the World to Sing"

Some of you may have recieved the email from me regarding the Gynocologic Cancer Foundation Half Marathon and 5K! I'm sooo excited that several of you responded saying that you would be interested!! It's still a little early, so the hotel and travel information hasn't been posted yet, but as soon as it becomes available, I'll be all over it!!!






Let me know if you wanna join! I thought it would not only be a great cause, but we could also have a great time in DC (and celebrate my mom's birthday too)!!!!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

"Everything's Gonna Be Alright"

So after a day of phone tag, I finally spoke with Dr. Numnum this morning. He said that the results from my D&C are not as "ugly" as the first biopsy, but still show Endometrial Cancer grade 1-2....no 3, which is good news...but not fabulous news! Of course, I was hoping for it to be precancerous, but I'll deal! He said that he actually took the results back to the pathologist and had several of them look at the cells up close to be sure of the outcome.

He is still offering me the hormone therapy treatment as a first option - preserving the baby maker, as I like to think of it!! We spoke very briefly about harvesting eggs and surrogacy (since Chase will STILL need a reversal after all of this)...we had played with the idea of surrogacy, but I don't think I ever really imagined it happening! We have an appointment on May 5 and he wants to have an open discussion with me and Chase regarding treatment, risks and alternatives! I'm nervous as hell, but I'm ready to get the ball rolling and get this over with!

Keep on praying...I know it works!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

"Dreamlover"

No news from the doctor today. It could mean that nothing has changed OR more than likely, it means he just doesn't have the results back yet! I have an appointment with the him (the oncologist) on May 5th to review everything and decide on treatment! I'll keep you updated as we get news!

PS: I'm so very touched by all of the prayer requests you guys have made! I know everything will be just fine because we put our complete trust in our Lord!

Monday, April 20, 2009

"Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me"

So this past weekend we took a little road trip down to Dallas to have a 30th birthday shin dig with some friends and to see Zoren!! We took her to see Monsters vs. Aliens and when I asked her what she thought she said "it was ok, but i didn't laugh!!" LOL!! The next day we met up with some friends at Main Event and took Zoren with us for a day of bowling!!! That night we all went to Blue Fish for some sushi (and Chase ate it...YAY) and then out to a bar!



video


It was SO much fun and it was SO good to see everyone, so of course it was SOOOOOO hard to leave! Every time we go to Dallas, we dread the drive back and then for the next few weeks all we do is contemplate how to get back there as soon as possible! It all kinda dies off for a while, then we visit again and it starts all over!! I want to give a big THANK YOU to Cortney and Jeremy for letting us crash at their place with the little one - those dogs wore her out LOL!!! OH...and HAPPY BIRTHDAY HEIDI!!!! You caught up with me!



Today is Monday which means that my D&C was scheduled at noon! Chase took off work so that he could bring me to and from and I really truly appreciate him being so patient!! Anyway, so I check in at 10am and basically did the same "prep" we did the first go round for my initial testing - blood work, 8 million people asking me questions, then the "happy go night night" juice! The surgery itself started a little late, but we were able to meet with Dr. Numnum right before I went in just to verify the purpose of our visit! As discussed, he wanted to get a larger sample of uterine tissue to do a biopsy on so that we will truly understand what we are dealing with. I think he still can't believe that someone in my health and at my age would have Endometrial Cancer! And I'm praying and hoping he's right! He should have the results by Thursday and, although we are meeting with him again in 2 weeks, he is going to give me a call to let me know how things pan out! EEK!

It's actually quite amusing because my heart rate never elevated (per the monitors I was hooked up to) - I was calm the entire time. I wonder why that is?! I tend to "sweat the small stuff" yet going under for a surgery seems to not even phase me. I do believe that if it comes down to the hysterectomy as the only option, I will be a total mess in the OR! Actually, I can pretty much guarantee it! The women next to me in prep was having a hysterectomy and she was a nervous wreck!

Of course, we are praying HARD that it's not too serious and that it will be easy to treat! All prayers and thoughts are welcome! I will definitely post results as soon as I get a call from the Dr. For now I need to lay down for a while! The anesthesia was fine, but I'm still a bit groggy! More later...

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

"COCO JAMBOO"

http://www.wcn.org/

It's a women's cancer website and it's got alot of great information!

"Happy Birthday to YOU"

So today was my first appointment with the gynocological oncologist...oh yea, AND it is my 30th birthday. My oncologist is Dr. Numnum and he was so nice and personable. First, though, I was 20 minutes late to my appointment because I swear every single building looks the same! I guess that was a good thing (being late) because it really took my mind off of what I was actually going there for! So I get a quick exam and then it's off to his office for a discussion. He was very up front with me and explained the diagnosis, treatment and risk factors very well!

So I was diagnosed with Endometrial Cancer grade 1-2. There are 3 grades. The 1-2 means that most of the cells are grade one (the best) and a few cells may have been grade two! It is stage one cancer and is still only confined to the uterine lining. He was honestly very shocked and concerned that someone at my age and with my health was dealing with this type of cancer. All of my other test results were great...no blockage, no abnormalities...just cancer cells.

The next topic was treatment. There is a 90% cure for this type of cancer...with the treatment being a hysterectomy. He said that any other patient of his that walked through that door with endometrial cancer would have been told to have a radical hysterectomy. But my situation is very different. I'm young and I want a family.

He scheduled a D&C for next week so that he can get an accurate idea of the type of cancer we are dealing with. If it is truly a grade one, I will being a hormone treatment immediately - Megace. After 3 months of treatment, I'll go in for a biopsy. If the results show that the cancer is regressing, then we will continue treatment until it's gone and then we'll need to get pregnant pretty quickly. If the cancer has not moved or if it's progressed, then the next route would be a hysterectomy. Yea...scary.

I have to admit, though, the word cancer was tossed around quite a few times and it never scared me. But the moment he talked about a hysterectomy, I broke down. Not because I was scared - because I was sad. Very, very sad. To not be able to have a baby is so heart breaking.

I'm so blessed to have such a strong Christian family to pray for me. I really appreciate everybody who is thinking about us. It means alot. I'm so thankful for the moments that have passed (meeting Chase, researching reversals, etc) that brought us here because without them, this would have gone on for years and may have ended up much worse.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

"Building a Mystery"

So today is my day off but all I can think about is what happened yesterday! I'm not devastated, I'm just confused and seriously concerned! I hate that I have to wait until next week to really understand what is going on! UGH! Chase called me a few minutes ago to let me know he is coming home early to spend time with me! Now tell me, could I have a better husband or what??? He's so wonderful!

I suppose I should get started cleaning the house so we'll be ready to go out of town next weekend for my birthday - and so that my friend who is house/dog sitting won't think we live like slobs!!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

"Blame it on the Rain"

So today I recieved a phone call at work that was probably one of the worst phone calls you can have. It was my doctor. Now...I know that anytime a doctor calls you before your next visit, it is NOT with good news!!! He started off the conversation with "do you have a moment to talk?" Well..yea, of course I do!! Basically he told me that when they did my biopsy and other misc testing, he found something a little alarming and sent it off for further testing. The results came back that I had endometrial adenocarcinoma! I had NO idea what he was talking about! The next few phrases that came out of his mouth scared the crap out of me..."cancer", "survival rate", "hysterectomy"! I asked several time again what this carcinoma thing was. He assured me that because of my great health and my age, this should be an easy treatment but that it IS a form of endometrial cancer and it will require treatments.

Immediately my mind darted all over the place! What kind of treatment? What's the survival rate? And most importantly, will I be able to have a baby? The treatment will more than likely be light - Progesterone (a hormone) should get rid of it if it is stage one...as he believes it to be. I will then go back for additional biopsies to be sure it is in remission and then we can start with fertility treatments. So yes...I will still be able to have babies!!! An oncologist called me soon after my OB hung up to set up an appointment and discuss treatment options. I never thought at 29 years old I would be meeting with an oncologist - seriously...that scares me! My appointment, ironically enough, is on my birthday!! Happy 30th birthday Lisa!!!

He warned me against looking anything up on the internet when I got home because it may scare me. As soon as I got home and told Chase the news, we Googled it! Endometrial adenocarcinoma seems to occur most often in women 50-59 years old who have never had children (nulliparity) and may be obsese. Less than 5% of women under the age of 40 have been diagnosed!

I will continue to pray about it and as soon as I know more after my appointment next Tuesday, I will definitely post it! I know God has a reason and a way for everything, so all I can do is trust in Him!

Monday, April 6, 2009

"All I Need to Know"

We met Dr. Vasquez with the Center for Reproductive Health early March. We honestly believed the process would go like this. Make appointment. Meet with doctor. Discuss the cost of the reversal. Schedule surgery. Have babies. WRONG!!!! We made the appointment and met with the doctor. Through our initial consultation we learned several things. One, it will cost close to $7000 for the reversal (still less than IVF) and two, I had to undergo testing before anything could get scheduled. I will admit, I was a little put off. Afterall, this was all about Chase, not me! The Dr. explained that he wanted to just be sure that I was "working" properly before we go through the costly procedure with Chase. I was actually pretty grateful for this - it made it evident that this was an ethical doctor and not just in it for a quick buck!

I went in for blood work and an ultrasound. The nurse turned the monitor toward me and pointed out a black outline. "There is your ovary," she said. "The black lining are little follicles evident of poly cystic ovaries." Well...what the heck does that mean!?!?! I had worked with some clients at my previous job who had Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, but I never thought it was something I would hear about me...and my overall knowledge of it was very weak. The nurse reassured me that it was very minor and nothing that couldn't be treated. I had always been very irregular so it wasn't surprising when she said that my uterine wall was very thick as well. It was all starting to make sense. Obviously, if I'm not having a period, I'm not ovulating, which means my ovaries are not creating a mature egg, which means I can't get pregnant. It was after this initial visit that I began to feel a little worried. What if it's me? What if I'm the reason we won't be able to have children. Even now, thinking about it, makes me upset.




The Dr. then set up a Lupron Challenge test as well as a biopsy, HSG (hysterosalpingogram) and a Sonohystogram. This all occurred on April 2nd so I'm still on antibiotics, but other than that, there was no pain or discomfort after the procedure. The HSG is basically an xray of the uterus and the fallopian tubes which shows the inside of the uterus and tubes. The picture will usually reveal any abnormalities of the uterus as well as tubal problems such as blockage. The Sonohystogram is used to look for any fibroids and polyps, or any other abnormalities of the uterine cavity that could interfere with pregnancy. I'm still not 100% sure what the Lupron Challenge is, but from what I remember, it is the process of using a dye to view the number of eggs available. The Dr. gave me a picture of...well...my insides! LOL! He explained to Chase several things regarding what they found, but I'm still not quite sure what anything means. We have a follow up appointment on the 15th to sit and talk about all of the results and figure out where to go from there! I'm so nervous!!!

"This Thing Called Love"

I suppose since this is my first entry, I should do a few introductions! My name is Lisa and I'm 29 years old (I'll be 30 next Tuesday...EEK)! I am married to the love of my life, Chase (32 years old), and we live with our 5 year old dog, Preston, in Hendersonville, TN. I work full time as a Customer Service Trainer for Bed Bath and Beyond and my husband is a retail store manager. Chase and I have a very unusual "love" story that we both enjoy telling because we get a great response from others.



I had been living the fabulous - and sometimes not so fabulous- single life in Dallas, Texas whenever God decided to introduce Chase to me. It was September 1, 2007 and I was out with some girlfriends during our monthly girls night out! About an hour before we left the bar, Chase entered. Our eyes met instantly and we stared at eachother for a good 2 seconds (are you nauseous yet??)! I stood beside him just to prove to my friends that it was nothing, saying "he'll never say anything, he probably wasn't even looking at me". "Will you hold our spot?" WHAT!?!?! Yes, those were the first heart melting, head spinning words my one true love spoke to me. I held his spot. A couple of minutes later he came back and we talked for a few minutes, as my friends were preparing to head home for the night. Ok...actually, I talked to his friend most of the time. I managed to get minor information from Chase, but he was clearly letting me know he was not there to pick up a girl! Fine! I left with my friends without an exchange of phone numbers or an email address. Monday came around and my accomplice Cortney proposed we find him on Myspace! TADA!! There he was! I sent him a "hey, you probably don't remember me and no, I'm not a stalker" email and within an hour, had a response. We emailed back and forth for a couple of days and finally set up a first date on September 8...and every day after that was heaven!

Long story short, he was offered a job in Nashville that he had already accepted before meeting me. He moved to Tennessee on September 25 and without hesitation, doubt or regret, I moved to Tennessee on October 28! Yes, 2 months after setting eyes on eachother for the first time, I not only moved IN with him, I moved 700 miles with him!!! We were engaged on Christmas 2007 and married September 13, 2008! We are about to celebrate our 7 month anniversary and I've never been happier or felt more blessed in my life!





Now let me introduce you to Operation Baby Dodson! Chase was married before and has a beautiful 5 year old daughter. Not long after his daughter was born, he underwent a vasectomy. As some of you may know, I have no children and had always dreamt of being a mother! I was insanely jealous of my friends who had begun their families, yet I was secure that God had a great path paved just for me so I was enjoying the life I had been blessed with.

I can remember the day Chase told me about the vasectomy like it was yesterday. I got a queasy feeling in my stomach and my eyes became teary. I immediately told him that if he did not want children, this relationship would need to end. His response was quick and he said that he always wanted a big family and he would love to have more children. Until the day we were married, I probably asked him the "baby question" a million times. I just really wanted him to understand how important being a mother was to me.

If I were 5 years younger, I'm sure my "clock" would not be ticking like it is, but I'm not and it is. Luckily we both agreed that if we were going to have kids, we wanted to have them in the near future so right around our 6 month anniversary, we decided to start visiting doctors to explore our options.