Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Cuddle Time

I'm a pretty strict dog owner - well, I used to be. With Rudy we never allowed her on the furniture or on the bed (except for camping). With Charlee I have become soft. She is still not allowed on the couches, but I broken down and let her cuddle with me a bed. Can you beleive it!
Once again I am sporting the Sinead O'Connor. When Carman shaved my head again my hair


I've wanted a Vespa for some time now. I've had a pictures of them on our fridge for several years. So when I heard I had to do more chemo, I decided I wanted some fun in my life. I know, I look pretty darn cool!


When you are on chemo you have to constantly monitor your temperature to make sure you are not running a fever. On day five during my first round of chemo in January 2009 I ran a fever and spend 5 days in the hospital being pumped with antibiotics. Those five days were some of the hardest days of my life. So when I started running a fever on day four during this second time with chemo I was not looking forward to a trip to the ER - I did not want another stay in the hospital.

Unfortunately what 'I want' did not come true. Because of the bed shortage I had to spend the night in the ER and it was brutal. It took until 5pm the next day to get a bed and I admit I had some breakdowns during that time. Between the babies crying, sounds of people wretching, large carts being pushed, the toilet flushing, and the construction I found myself on the verge of walking out many times. But, refusing care really isn't an option when you are on chemo and running a fever.

When I finally got my bed I was past tired and it took 2 Ativan and a sleeping pill to knock this girl out.

On Thursday night Carman and my dad delivered the care package you all helped with. Travis just so happened to be about 3 doors down. Travis and Jamie were both pretty taken-back with the unexpected gift. To my surprise it was Jamie birthday! Jamie stopped by my room several times and we got a chance to get to know each other. It is like I've known Jamie a long time. I also got a chance to visit with Travis a bit too.

I can already picture Carman and I riding out to Travis and Jamie's for Lincoln's sixth birthday.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Everyone is probably wondering how Brenda made out collecting for the couple that she met during her recent chemo treatment at the hospital so I will update you briefly and let her fill in the blanks when she is home and able to again.

Firstly, I am posting for her because she has spent the past 48 hours in the hospital due to a chemo related fever and low blood counts. The same thing happened after her very first chemo treatment last January, so it is clear that it is just too much of a shock to her system. Fortunately she was a lot stronger physically this time around, so she will be out fairly quickly and back home where she is a lot more comfortable and has her nurse, Charlee (our dog) to comfort her.

Her parents were here the past couple of days helping out while Brenda was in the hospital, so last night her dad and I took everything that had come in over the past few days, to the hospital. There was four extra large gift bags and three cardboard boxes packed full of clothes, blankets, toys, diapers, and gifts, and another gift bag stuffed full of gift cards and cash. We are very thankful to everyone who was able to contribute - it will go a long ways in helping this couple out and just make things a little bit easier as they struggle through their current situation. It was not a coincidence that Brenda met them last Friday - it is quite obvious they were brought together to change each others lives and that has already become quite apparent.

Some of you have emailed the last couple of days to ask if you could still contribute and the answer is yes! We had more dropped off today and can take more to them next week - it is all very much needed and very much appreciated!


Saturday, April 17, 2010


First let me clarify that I don't need any help. On Friday I had my second round (9th session of Doxetaol and 19th of Hercpetin. I was happy to get my favorite nurse Chris (he is the best)

Since I had a Caring Hands jewelery party the night before I brought in one of the stands in for 'show-and-tell'. While Chris was taking a look at the jewelery another patent's wife (caring her new born baby) bought a couple of necklaces and we got taking. Right before Christmas her husband (age 27) got sick and has been in the hospital ever since. They are from a small town a ways from Red Deer. Because she was always up the hospital, and she was was getting close to delivering their baby she too was admitted. Their baby boy is a month old now and his dad is still very sick in the hospital.

I just can't stop thinking about them. I need to help them some how. I am certain as they were planning for the birth of their baby, and the joy he would bring, it would not have been under these circumstances. You can just see it in her eyes how overwhelmed she is - who wouldn't be.

So I call out for help! May I humbly ask you to considering contributing to a care package in a small way. Here is what I would like to assemble:

  • Tim Hortons Gift Cards (there is one right by the hosptial she could go eat at).
  • Safeway Cards - Is the nearest grocery store to the 2 bedroom apartment she is renting.
  • PetroCanada Cards - the nearest gas station
  • Chapters or Scotts Parables Gift Cards (I encouraged them to read - he is reading the Lance Armnstrong book right now).
  • Their baby boy is one month old - I am not certain if there has even been a shower for him. Little boy clothes over 1 month and up to say 9 months would be great . Small toys would also be nice - please nothing big. I think small books that focus on being a family would be something they could all snuggle up in his bed and read together
  • And of course, Cash is always needed.
  • Please pray for healing and peace.

Talk to your co-workers, neighbours, your church to see how you could all contribute. If each gives even $5 it can go a long way when you are living under their circumstances!

I know he is going down for more extensive chemo again this week. So I would like to get these care packages up to them as soon as possible - time is of the essence!!!!!!!! I would like to send a package up on Wednesday or Thursday (April 22nd).

Please drop of or mail your contributions to my house:

Brenda Odovichuc

12 McCune Ave

Red Deer, AB

T4N 0H2

If I am not home, or if I am stuck in the bathroom, please just leave your envelope in the mailbox or your gift between the front door.

This couple needs to be shown that they are not alone, and that they are not forgotten. Please, oh please, help me show them this


Sunday, April 11, 2010


That's what is growing in my bones - bad weeds. Unfortunately, I got bad news on Friday and I am going back on chemo this week. Carman always likes to focus on the positive so I share that my heart is still in great shape (all those laps in the pool weren't for nothin') and my vital organs are clean. It is just the bones that have flared-up again. In a way I was surprised about the news as I have been feeling pretty good most days. I have been achy, but I thought that was just a side effect of one of my drugs. I am thankful that it was caught early enough because bone pain is no fun.

My doctor is going to put me back on the same chemo as before so it should be familiar. My last chemo was only in July and I have erased much of that time from my memory - or maybe it is still my 'chemo brain'. I remember I have a delayed response so by about day 4 I have 3 really bad days. I remember I didn't care much for meat and my sweet tooth went of vacation. I remember that I struggled with the 'runs' and was caught on many walks with Rudy thinking I was going to have an accident. If any of you see me on my walking route with messy pant please don't laugh!

Nurse Charlee (our new dog) is being promoted to Dog Therapy Nurse. Because she loves to cuddle I think I will be well taken care of. And, she puts a smile on my face with her antics. I still really miss Rudy though. I still have hope of having a future. I've recently had visions of me wearing a 'I'm Cancer Free' t-shirt. So please don't think 'this-is-it' for me.

To balance out this really crappy news we've decided I should make my Vespa driving dreams come true. Carman has already found one in Calgary and will call tomorrow to put on hold. I plan on buying a fun new leather jacket (because you can't wear a Harley Davidson jacket on a Vespa) and my riding boots are going to be some cowboy boots. Stay tuned for some pictures.

Once again I will loose my hair so before it falls out Carman buzz my head. I think I will also treat myself to some comfy clothes and pajamas.It is disappointing to be on chemo again as I have enjoyed getting back into the swing of things with work. Like last time, I will continue to work on a limited basis. Because my immune system will be thrashed face-to-face contact will have to be limited. Recently I was telling my sister Tara that I would like to try writing some 'industry' articles to try and get published. This 'chemo' time might just be the time to attempt this.

It sucks rocks that I have to do chemo again, but I continue to trust in the Lord.