Life is not about waiting for the storms to pass- it is about learning to dance in the rain.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Post-surgery Update
Feeling better than I expected after surgery yesterday. I came home about 1 pm and slept most of the afternoon. In the evening I just sat around and chatted with various people or worked my Suduku (ever tried those??? They can be addicting!!) I didn't eat much, but that's to be expected. The Dr. said only eat if I were hungry. He gave me antibiotic (just a precaution) and two kinds of pain meds. I'm only taking the one for "mild" pain. I really can't tolerate the heavy stuff. And I'm not really in pain...only discomfort...ergo, the mild one makes sense.

But this morning I had a good Mexican breakfast: Beans and rice!! Sure tasted good.

Teresa is still with me. I feel just a tad guilty this morning; she's cleaning the house while I'm on my computer. (Obviously I don't feel guilty enough to get up from here!!) My justification is that she's happy doing it...And I won't let her do anything heavy. We've been doing one project or another together every day, but today I'm not up to anything much. We need to get out our pictures and start albums...probably tomorrow..No, Margaret is here tomorrow...Okay, next week...or over the Memorial Day Weekend.

This sounds more like a note to someone who can read my mind than a public blog...oh, well. I'll try to be more substantive in my next blog. Must be the pain meds.

I am getting sleepy. Probably time for my morning nap. :)


Monday, May 21, 2007

Breast Cancer Survivor!!
Health Update

All tests have come back good. My blood counts are now up to normal and I'm feeling better. Actually, I'm feeling better than I have in more than a year. However...(Always a however or a but!) Wednesday I have surgery again. This one should be the last one. They're finishing the reconstruction and taking out the port. It will take me a few weeks to recuperate completely, but the doctor says he can probably release me in June. So...this long journey is nearly over, and I am so happy!!!

I've put in an application to teach summer school. I don't know if there will be any openings or not, but it's time to get back to work...soon!!


Thursday, May 17, 2007

Here we are with Jaime & Teresa in Chicago last week. We took a ride on the Chicago River and Lake Michigan.
(Left to right: Phylis, Bob, Jaime, Teresa)

Health Update

Not much is new. I'm still not up to full strength. I go for a couple of days now before I have to have a day to do nothing but rest. However, my blood counts are holding in the healthy range: hemoglobin is at 13.8 which is very good. Chemotherapy is over; Iron infusions are over. All that remains is surgery to finish reconstruction and to remove the port -- that's scheduled for the 23rd of May -- next week. Some additional blood panels are being run to determine which, if any, hormone therapy I might need.

Damage still continuing includes perpetual sinusitis, neuropathy in hands and feet, no eyebrows or eyelashes, AND my hair is coming back in light brown, not red. It is starting to curl now. At first it was straight. Maybe the red will come back too. If not, there's always Clairol!



I love this picture of M. She's at the point in which she becomes very uncomfortable and realizes it's too late to go back and she's afraid to go ahead. The expression on her face is priceless.

It reminds me so much of those times when I'm unsure of what to do -- it's too late to go back and I'm not sure how to proceed. God brings us to those points to build faith in us. Those times when we must trust his goodness and mercy because that's the only thing we have left. They are not comfortable times, but they are growing times.
Psalms 20:6-9
6 Now I know that the Lord saves his anointed; he answers him from his holy heaven with the saving power of his right hand. 7 Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God. 8 They are brought to their knees and fall, but we rise up and stand firm. 9 O Lord, save the king! Answer us when we call!
I'm right there with M ; where I need to be is with David, "I rise up and stand firm."
But like the loving grandmother (me) who talked M down from her fearful perch, God is right there coaching me through situations in which I have "bitten off more than I can chew". (To borrow an idiom from my childhood) God is faithful.


Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Pastor Joe (Sarge) Guerrero

I received the following email from a friend, Pastor Erik Wise and I wanted to ask for your prayers for Joe Guerrero and his family. I included the picture to give you a visual of whom you are praying for. A family, a real family just like yours. But for the grace of God. . .


To all off the wonderful prayer warriors:

I wanted to give you an update on the condition of Pastor Joe "Sarge"
Guerrero our Associate Pastor of Outreach and Evangelism.

As of Sunday morning his kidney have completely shut down. They cannot explain why and are working fervently to find the reason. They went in on Monday to insert a catheter in order to start dialysis treatments and punctured one of the cancer tumors, it immediately engulfed his body. The cancer had already been detected in the bone and was progressing rapidly. As of today, he is undergoing daily dialysis treatments and we are not sure that doing radiation or chemo will effect the cancer at all. Doctors say less than 30% chance of it working. To quote the doctor, "he is riddled with disease". They are not giving us any good news.

We hear the doctors, but we know the great physician. We covet your prayers and we will keep you posted regularly. He is in the VA Hospital in North Chicago, IL. Please use this email or call the church for updates. We have removed the phone from his room as he needs to rest. I hope you all understand!

Thank you for your prayers!!

Caught in HIS awesome grip~
Apostle Erik D. Wise
Founder/Senior Pastor
High Praises International Ministries
Chicago USA

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Jaime, Teresa, Phylis and Bob

Life Goes On

I worked today -- if you can call it work. I went to a seminar. My strength is still not back to normal though. I came home after the seminar and took a nap. And tonight I'm resting -- not doing much. And I have another seminar on Friday. However, after the procedure on May 23rd, I should have time to heal over the summer. I'm looking forward to that!! In the meantime, I have a classroom to pack up next week. That will take several days, but Teresa will help me with that, so it shouldn't be such a problem.

And...there's another service on Saturday night.

Jaime goes home on Tuesday. I think Teresa and I can scale back the activities and get some things accomplished without me burning the candle at both ends.

Here's to balanced living!!


Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Health Update
Chemotherapy Over

Officially chemotherapy is finished. I did the last iron infusion last week -- and my hemoglobin is now in the normal range, at 13. (Normal is 12-18) During the colonoscopy, the doctor cauterized the bleeder and removed a couple of pollups. The next step is surgery to complete reconstruction, removed the expander and put in the permanent implant. AND...I get to remove the least I think so. The oncologist will give his final approval on Monday. But in the meantime, surgery is scheduled for the 23rd of May for both procedures.

The remaining difficulty is with the remaining neuropathy in hands and feet. Feet especially are a bit problematic. After walking so far today, I can really feel it. The allergic reaction I had back in December damaged nerves in my hands and feet. The hands are not as bad. It just feels like I have gloves on all the time. The outer layer of skin has no feeling. (I burned myself on an oven shelf the other day and felt no pain. On a bit of heat.) My feet are worse. The three middle toes on both feet are basically asleep. My feet swell easily and then are still and not very flexible. So sometimes getting up it's a bit like walking with clogs on -- no bending. (It's not noisy though!)

So...overall, I'm doing well!



It's been awhile. I've had all I can do to keep up with things. First: friends arrived from Ecuador on the 29th of April. They've been here nine days now and it's been a whirlwind. Last Thursday we went to Chicago, visited the Hancock Observatory and took a ride on the Chicago River. Then today we did the museum thing: The John G. Shedd Acquarium and Oceanarium, and the Art Museum. It was a lot of walking...I'm going to soak my feet in just a few minutes. I barely made it back to the car.

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