Hi, everyone! I just want to share something amazing with all of you.
I just got home a little while ago from another trip up to Tuscon to see Dr. Lang about a glitch with my remaining drain. Not a big deal. I got to get the drain out which feels heavenly, but have to wear an ace wrap around my chest for a week or so. Not fun in this heat. It is warm and very itchy! I met with the radiologist yesterday and things are in the works to start my treatments some time next week. My radiologist's name is Dr. Tannehill and I really liked him. He actually worked with Dr. Livingston and Dr. Lang in Tuscon up until a couple of months ago and has just recently relocated to Scottsdale. How awesome is it that I'm able to go to a radiologist here close to home that comes very highly recommended by my doctors in Tuscon?! He spent quite a bit of time talking with Joe, Pam, and I explaining everything and answering all of our questions. He and the other two radiologists at this radiological center specialize in breast cancer patients. That is all they do. It was pretty scary listening to all the short term and long term side effects, but it is something I need to do. I left feeling that if I had to do this, at least I was in expert hands, again.
Anyway, as you all know, the last few days have been a little rough emotionally. I really thought I was coming to the end of my treatment, only to find I still have a ways to go. My feelings have been a lot like when I was first diagnosed. Sad and scared, but also anxious to get the fight going. My last chemo was a little over a month ago, so any cancer cells left in my body have had a bit of a vacation. I'm ready to go again and do whatever it is I need to do to get rid of them!
Ok. Here is the speechless part. I was just sitting in the living room, working on a knitting project, feeling physically and emotionally tired out from a couple of long days, when Joe came in with the mail. He handed me a large manila package from his cousin, Mary Monica, who lives in California. I think I've met Mary Monica twice, both times back when Joe and I were first married. She is a breast cancer survivor, also, and has been in touch with us (mostly Joe, I'm shy about getting on the phone) frequently since I was diagnosed with words of encouragement, support, and advice. When I opened the package, my breath was literally taken away and then I just started to cry. Inside was a beautiful chain of paper cranes folded by Mary Monica and her friends for me. If you don't know the story behind Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes, you can visit www.sadako.org to learn more. Mary Monica had no way to know that I share this story with my students each year and teach them how to fold cranes. I hope she doesn't mind if I share her beautiful words here.
"This chain of paper cranes were inspired by the Sadako World Peace Project. They also represent my hopes, prayers, and wishes for you on your journey through breast cancer to regain your health, strength, (hair), and make a full recovery."
How can I possibly be down or sad or discouraged when I have wonderful, beautiful people like Mary Monica and all the rest of you rooting for me. Every time all of the medical information and treatment and side effects become overwhelming, it is met by the overwhelming love and support of my family and friends. My mind is literally without words to describe my feelings. I am speechless. Yet, my heart and spirit are filled with love and joy.
Thank you, Mary Monica! Thank you everyone! I hold each of you close in my heart.