Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Radiation - Week 3 of 5

15 down, 10 t0 go!

My dad came down on Wednesday to take my mom and I to the Grand Canyon IMAX. During the film they showed white water rafting scenes; and I just couldn't stop thinking about how much I would love to have that experience. I have since researched the adventure, and find the 6-7 day trip of camping and maneuvering 60 rapids on to my 'Bucket List'.

Wednesday night I went to bible study. I really enjoy my time with these German seniors - they sure know their bible, which encourages me to strive to do the same.

Thursday was a busy day in that I got another monthly injection into my abdomen to try and shut down my ovaries, and I got to spend an hour talking to one of the Psychologist at the Cross Cancer Institute. It made me feel good to hear: "that is normal", "it is good to cry".

To be perfectly honest, the hardest thing I am dealing with is the threat of not being able to grow old with Carman. Pre-cancer we had that 'talk' of us wanting each other to re-marry, but now that it threatens me, it is so hard to consider the thought of Carman loving anybody but me. I want to be his only wife, I want to travel around the country in an RV in our golden years, I want to put his socks on when we get old. The thought of another woman having that privilege floods me with tears, and makes me want to vomit. Time is not forgiving. Would Carman forget the way I feel, the sound of my voice, my love for him, his love for me? Would his new life overshadow his life with me? And what is heaven really like? I know we get our new 'super bodies', and that we will recognize each other. So if we recognize each other, we must remember our earthly lives. So how would this all work in eternity? I know we won't get this answer until we are there, and that God is too loving to make our earthly problems problems in eternity, but it still makes it so hard for my simple-minded earthly head.

When I got home on Friday afternoon I was feeling so good I took Rudy for our regular walk. Saturday I was still feeling really good that I even had times where I felt normal. Sunday had me a bit more on the tired side, but I hope I can keep my energy level up and that fatigue doesn't become much of a problem.

I am reading the book of Job right now and I would like to share a verse:

"Naked I came from my mother's womb,
and naked I will depart.
The LORD gave and the has taken away;
may the name of the LORD be praised."

I pray: God, heal my body completely of cancer and let Carman and my love for each other continue to grow. Thank you for this radiation and hormone treatment plan, we have complete trust that it came from you.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Radiation - Week 2 of 5

10 down, 15 to go!

Mom and I try and find things to do to pass the time, but it still moves too slowly for me. It is really hard being away from Carman and Rudy. Although the invention of Skype (talking via webcam) is wonderful, it can't hug you or hold your hand in the middle of the night. Or in Rudy's case, she can't provide me her endless kisses or cuddles.

Wednesday was quite a day in that I started myself on fire. I was making soup and the string on my hoodie hit the burner, then touched the side of my hoddie and burnt a hole through it. I was noticing smoke but I thought there was something on the burner. After checking the burner and seeing there was no smoke coming off it, I looked down and realized I was on fire. I first thought stop-drop-and roll, but I didn't think I had time so I slapped my side with my right hand. The flame came out and my t-shirt melted on to my hand. The burns on my hand wouldn't normally be a concern, but because it is on the same side of where my breast cancer was, my arm is a risk of lymphodema (permanent swelling of the arm). Just the week before I went to a lymphodema prevention course and they advised protecting the arm against burns and cuts! The situation could have been A LOT worse, and I am thankful the burns are healing up well.

Fatigue is setting in a bit. I found myself quite easily tired this weekend. My skin was still looking good of Friday, but today (Monday) I think some redness is setting in. I will take all of these side effects - the treatment benefits outweigh the risks!

Carman and I took it pretty easy on the weekend. I enjoyed cuddling with Rudy (we moved the mattress from our trailer into the basement for the winter). Carman put up the Christmas lights, we did a Costco trip, and took-in the new James Bond movie. And, Curtis and Taryn and the kids had us over for cedar-plank salmon on Saturday night.

Carman and I have felt so humbled by the gifts we have received, especially prayer support. My friend Linda stopped by Sunday night and said her mom in Newfoundland is praying for me. God's kingdom is so amazing, and I am overwhelmed when I hear people are praying for us.

A friend gave me a book called 'When Your Wold Falls Apart' by David Jeremiah. I wanted to share the poem the book opens with:

A Bend in the Road
Sometimes we come to life's crossroads
And we view what we think is the end.
But God has a much wider vision
And knows that it's only a bend -
The road will go on and get smoother
And after we've stopped for a rest,
The path that lies hidden beyond us
Is often the path that is best.
So rest and relax and grow stronger,
Let go and let God share the load
And have faith in a brighter tomorrow.
You've just come to a bend in the road.

How I pray that this is only a bend, and not the end. God have mercy on me!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

What Life Will Bring?

I was laying in bed last weekend and I was pondering the shutting down of my ovaries. We will never have a child together. As I said before, I believe God prepared me for this a long time ago, but it is still something very significant to digest. If this stupid disease takes me, I won't be able to leave anybody with my eyes or my stubby legs behind. I always had this fantasy that we would have children and Carman would cave in and let them take my last name. I am very proud to be an Odovichuc, and I like the uniqueness the name provides. Will I ever be healthy enough to be a candidate for adoption?

While all this was going through my head, God reminded me of sitting on a beach in the Philippines surrounded by little girls selling jewelry and their 'jewelry pimp'. Two of the girls were trying really hard to sell me jewelryand I wasn't budging. I just smiled at them and started reading my book. One of the girls sat behind me and started reading my book out loud - she was really good at reading and I just let her amuse me. After awhile more of the girls came and sat down and we just chatted (no more jewelery antics). Probably because the girls weren't working their 'pimp' came over too. We had quite an interesting conversation. I asked why the girls were selling jewelry and not at home or just out playing with their friends (it was a Saturday). He claimed that their families need the money and every dollar counts.

How does this memory fit into my future? I don't have clue. God just brought it to my mind. I don't want God to be done with me yet. Will he let me grow old and grey? What is your will for my life Lord?

Radiation - Week 1 of 5

6 down, 19 to go!

So far so good with the radiation. I am not feeling fatigued although I find I am yawning a bit more. My skin looks the same so far as well. The doctor did say that after the second week I should see how I am reacting. Physically I am actually feeling much better. Carman even commented tonight that I am able to get up with ease versus before. I was having a lot of pain in my shoulder blade (it felt like one large muscle knot). I still feel it a bit, but it isn't giving me the grief like before.

I have been walking around my new neighbourhood in Edmonton and found a bible study on Wednesday nights and public skating on Monday nights. I attended the bible study on Wednesday and really enjoyed myself. The other participants were all German speaking seniors! I was really neat to hear someone pray for me in German. There is no study this Wednesday, but the following Wednesday they are going to start the book of James (they just finished the book of Isaiah and the pastor recommended they move to the New Testament. One of the ladies asked me what book I would recommend, and I replied the book of James. She said is was one of her favorite books and the others determined it was the next book to study!).

My sister Tara was telling that her friend who is a grade 2 Catholic school teacher has prayed for me in her class. One of her students is an autistic boy who every once and awhile prays for me (especially on the days when his teacher doesn't). This just brought me to tears.