Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Party for Pottebaum - More Thank You's!

Stacy Nelson and Me
Crystal Crowley, Colin Hogan and Megan Misterek
I have known Colin and Megan since elementary school.
Kelly and Jeremy Robson
They just had twin boys in March...
doesn't Kelly look great?!
Kelly Robson and Gretchen Chace
I have known this ladies since Jr. High and we
are still great friends today!
Me, Crystal Crowley and Emily Gardels
Crystal and her husband donated food from their restaurant
HuHot Mongolian Grill and Crystal used her talents decorating the entire place!
One of my best friends Emily Gardels and her boyfriend Nick
flew in from Chicago.  Emily donated A LOT of
the auction items...she works at Macy's in Chicago
so she got some GOOD STUFF!

Gretchen and Jeff Chace...
They just had a baby Boy October 24!
Welcome to the world Jack Andrew =)
Megan Misterek and Mike Livesay
Me and Lori Armiger
 Thank you again for coming out to support us!  We are so fortunate to have such great friends!=)

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

My Chemo Port is Out! / Update on my Mom

It has been a while since I last wrote but things in my life are changing and moving so quickly I haven't had a chance to write. I started radiation treatment on Tuesday, November 1st. Since then I have had radiation treatments Monday - Friday and I am now on #12 starting today. Once I am checked in and the radiation specialists (Emily, Brandon and Misti) have me in the correct (uncomfortable) position the actual treatment lasts a whole whopping 4 minutes! Piece of cake! I would take radiation over chemo any day! They place me on my back with my left arm up and around my head. My head is twisted to the right and up so the radiation can hit me at just the area they need to treat. I have a total of 33 treatments so my last treatment should be on December 19th or 20th depending if I get treatment the day after Thanksgiving.

We celebrated Halloween with my parents, my sister and her kids and lots of friends. This is the second year we went on a hay rack ride around the neighborhood while we went trick or treating. Olivia had so much fun...not just collecting candy but ringing door bells! She would get so upset if the "big kids" rang the door bell before she did so Steve we had to take her to houses by herself so she could ring the door bell on her own. One lady was so nice to go back in her house, shut the door and let Olivia re-ring her bell.

We also celebrated my mom's birthday on the 25th of October and my dad's birthday on November 12th. My mom is getting her last Ta Ta fill today! She is having her ovaries removed this month so her risk of ovarian cancer is 0%, if she left them in her chances of ovarian sky rocket to 87%. Other then that she is doing fantastic. My mom and I should have our final surgeries after the new year. My mom will go in January and I will go in March or April.

I got my chemo port removed in an out patient surgery yesterday. The procedure took an hour and I was awake and talking to Dr. Grange the entire time. Last night I had a some discomfort but nothing I can't handle. Over the course of 8 months I have experienced worse! My right hand is slowly healing and I am typing with it which is a first. I am working to rehabilitate my right hand to full function and meeting with a lymphedema specialist on my left arm to get full range of motion back. I have to do this in order to start working out like I use to...with weights. I have to take baby steps to get back to where I was and need to be extra careful so I don't get lymphedemia. For those of you who don't know what lymphedemia is...here is a quick lesson. When I had my mastectomy the cancer spread to 27 out of 30 of my lymph nodes which are located under my arm.

Clear fluid that travels through your body's arteries, circulates through your tissues to cleanse them and keep them firm, and then drains away through the lymphatic system. Lymph nodes are the filters along the lymphatic system. Their job is to filter out and trap bacteria, viruses, cancer cells, and other unwanted substances, and to make sure they are safely eliminated from the body.

Also traveling through the arteries is fresh blood, which brings oxygen and other nutrients to all parts of the body—including your breasts. Used blood leaves the breasts through the veins and is pumped back to the heart and lungs to be refreshed. Lymph must also be refreshed and recycled. Lymph drains away from your breasts through the lymphatic system, which is made up of lymphatic channels and lymph nodes.

Because I only have 3 lymph nodes left they are doing the job for 30. If the 3 that I have left fail then I will get Lymphedema in my arm. Fluid will fail to go out and through my body and sit in my left arm. If it sits to long then toxins build up and my arm would blow up like a balloon. I will never let it get to that point but if it did I would need to buy a compression sleeve to move the fluid back out.

I have also been working on my non-profit and went to pitch my idea to a marketing company. They thought it was such a great idea they think it could be a business and a non-profit. Because nutrition effects everyone I could help more than just cancer patients. So instead of writing this blog I have been brainstorming, writing and re-writing a business plan. They want to get investors to help me with my vision. This is not something I had in mind but definitely something that is lacking in Omaha and the United States. For some reason everything keeps falling in to place and has been so easy!

Another sign pointing me in this unplanned direction, my video equipment broke. I edited and burned my final video last week. I had one more planned for this coming week but the Apple store can't fix my computer. It is a sign to me that I need to focus 100% on my new idea! Before cancer, I would have been so upset, but now I feel I am being pushed in to a completely different direction for a reason. I feel as if I can help so many more people and will feel completely satisfied at the same time. Weird, since a year ago at this time I have it written in my journal for God to give me a clear path for my career. Before cancer I never would have gone this direction but now it makes sense.

Thank you again to all my friends and family for all your love and support! We are on the home stretch and we couldn't have gotten this far with out you!