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A New Day!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

It's a new day and a very good one. I finished my radiation treatments March 21st and although I still sleep a lot and the tiredness hits me in a snap, I AM getting my strength back so that I am stretching and walking for 20 minutes each day and I plan to do at least 5 minutes more daily by next week! To some of you who run, work out at the gym, etc. an hour or more, most likely think 20 to 25 minutes a day isn't that big a deal. To me it is a very big deal! When I started doing this seriously, I was in my power chair at least 5 days a week or more. During my treatments between Jan.19 and March 21, I only had to use it ONE day!! I used my walker nearly every day, once I used my cane, and once I did it with no help at all!!
So losing nearly 50 lbs has really helped me. I have worked on logging my food and exercise daily and have it down fairly well. I have been working on portion sizes, but still find it difficult to eat enough food to meet my calorie count. Lately though, I do most days. I use 1200 - 1700 daily count. I am working to get my potassium, calcium, and fiber counts up. And I'm feeling really good about it.

The picture is my "graduation" from radiation treatments.

When I was diagnosed, I was afraid my steady weight loss was because of the cancer being in me. However I have continued on my journey losing a lb week. Whenever I have had problems with the cardio, I have a plateau week, but I have not gained. Someday that will most likely happen, but not today or this week!!

When I was a freshman in high school, we had to have a health class. At that time I learned how much all areas of body are connected and with bad habits - eating, exercising, sleep, and mental attitude- it would not function as it should. I won't say how long ago that was, but you can trust me - it was over 40 yrs ago! This is exactly what Spark People is teaching. The difference? Well let me count the ways.

1) The site and emails can be visited as many times a day as one wishes to do so. It is not limited to 50 minutes a day, five days a week, for 6 weeks in 4 years!!

2) There is a lot more info here than in the classroom. With time constraints, it would be impossible for a teacher to do so.

3) There was never any "healthy" recipes available, even in cooking classes. I remember being in Home Ec classes for 1/2 a year in both 7th and 8th grade and almost every recipe started "Make a white sauce",,,,,,,

4) There is much more understanding and maturity in adult years than being 13 yoa!! (Or at least I hope there is)! emoticon

5) The support and encouragement from the SP's on the site is phenomenal. It is outstanding and I have met so many lovely, sincere, honest people since I started to participate full time. Taking advantage of the spark points page, joining teams and visiting and keeping up with them at least once a week helps, too.

Yes this is a new day, renewed commitment, new friends and just lovely!! emoticon


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

1BEACHWALKER 4/11/2011 3:54PM

    emoticon That is so wonderful to hear! Wishing you many years of good health to come! keep going with all the changes you have made through SP- it is indeed a fantastic place to be when you need it! Stay strong! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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PMFISH 4/2/2011 6:35PM

    emoticon They did not give out certificates when I had the chemo or radiation, but I remember the relief when it was behind me!! YA!

You still can do more, than I can. Walking 5 minutes is about my limit unless I have my oxygen on. Carrying that to walk is not fun, but I am not complaining. Have only had to be on oxygen a couple of times this year, unless I am exercising.

You are an inspiration, truly!


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MEMARE 3/31/2011 7:49AM

    Congratulations Ev for finishing radiation treatments. Iím so proud of you for keeping up your exercises.
I found keeping up that routine of exercise actually helped keep me from getting too fatigued from the RT.

Donít you just love your Ďgraduation certificateí? I got one too, signed by all the caring people that were on my team. I donít miss the treatments, but honestly can say I miss my team.

Enjoy your new day every day! You are doing great!
emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 3/31/2011 7:50:39 AM

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TDWANDD2MYK9 3/31/2011 1:27AM

    Fantastic! And yes I can relate to the difficulties in exercising while receiving treatment, being ill and in pain makes exercising seem impossible, but thanks to SP all is possible and the support, better than any other place I have heard of. Great blog. I wish you all the very best. Enjoy your day! emoticon emoticon

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PUFFPASTRY 3/30/2011 11:04PM

    You are AMAZING! You do more in a day than I do in some entire weeks, and I'm not the one who just had chemo. You are a total inspiration, Evwings!!
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SDJOLLY 3/30/2011 10:23PM

    Congratulations! You have come through this with amazing strength. You are such an inspiration!

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MOM2ACAT 3/30/2011 6:14PM

    emoticon I know what it's like to work out when you are tired, and 20 minutes is a big deal!

So glad you are done with your treatments; I have been through radiation 4 times since 2004; it takes awhile to bounce back from that. Part of it is that your body is using that energy to heal from it.

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TALLERANT 3/30/2011 5:05PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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SOFEDUPP 3/30/2011 12:48PM

    I agree that Spark is a great place to track everything that you do. It is also a great place to make friends. I hope that you continue on your journey of weight loss and good health with the help of your Spark friends.

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TBID227 3/30/2011 11:01AM

    You are an awesome and strong woman! Keep getting stronger and congrats on all the progress you have made!

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    emoticonI am so happy for you! emoticon

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Vein, Vein, where is the Vein????

Thursday, February 03, 2011

OK, all the staff at our local hospital HAVE to know how awful a stick I am. To remind: For my first surgery, I had seven sticks from tries to get blood and insert IV. Finally, the anesthesiologist got the blood - from my groin and got the IV inserted - in my big toe joint where it connects to the foot! Because of this, my surgeon put in a port as he knew I would have to have a draw once a week with radiation. Plus would I had to have IV chemo, the port would be in place.

Yesterday was my second stick, but the first from the port. I had no idea what to expect, but it stung but not in anyway as hurtful as rolling, collapsing, or blowing my veins. For that I am truly thankful. The nurse who did the draw will be doing it every week and when I finish my treatments, I will be back to see her every six weeks! She is the chemo oncologist's nurse and her name is Leslie and I greatly appreciate her.

The entire staff who works me is wonderful! They are all professional with their work and make you feel supported and safe. I'm so blessed to have them. The radiation oncologist's nurse (Rockie) oversees my treatments. The techs are Dom and Candace. We also have a student from a nursing program at one of the nearby colleges coming in three days a week. She is Tasha and has really done well with her training because she is now able to do some of the work on her own and it is always spot on.

I'll be finishing my 7th treatment tomorrow. I am still not sleeping well. And today we were gone for nearly 10 hours! To say I am tired is an understatement.

As far as exercise goes, I can still walk in place fairly well, so I stretch and walk for that part of my program.

The food is the most difficult to meet. I must eat until I'm ready to burst to even meet 2-3 goals daily. I seem to tolerate salads fine, I also do dairy well. The rest is questionable. Today I had 10 servings of fruits and veggies and just barely made my protein and calories, but did not make fat nor carbs. I was also low for potassium, but better than most days. I actually went over with cholesterol for the first time going over for anything. Thankfully my cholesterol reading is great at 176 with the largest % from the good. I'm plugging along one day at a time and I feel so much better since I have received so much SP support from all my friends.

Sorry guys, but this is all I can do today. See everyone tomorrow.

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PMFISH 2/5/2011 10:21PM

    Ev it sounds like you are doing well, with still being able to walk in place. Blown veins are a _itch! They had to end up putting the chemo in veins in hand for me. Sometime that is still the only place they can draw blood. Try not to get so overtired. The body is being assaulted and needs some pampering.

Prayers going up for you! Hang it kiddo!


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CIVIAV 2/4/2011 1:09PM

    How awesome that you wanted to share this. I remember the stick and it wasn't pleasant. Hang in there and know you are doing what it takes!

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MOM2ACAT 2/4/2011 12:30PM

    I have a prescription for Emla cream to use on my port; I put it on an hour before my appointment, and cover with a piece of Glad Press & Seal wrap. It numbs it up, so I don't feel pain or stinging from the needle pokes.

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PANSYLADY2 2/4/2011 9:26AM

    We will be "holding your hand" through the whole thing, too, don't forget! It's a challenge, a speed bump, that helps build our faith. About the eating, try nuts! The will give you good fats, and a quick way to get some protein. Might help if you can tolerate them.

Father, I pray for Evie right now. Hold her in Your loving arms throughout this challenge. Comfort her and her family, and let her see Your Face, feel your closeness. I ask this in Jesus' Name. Amen.

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SDJOLLY 2/3/2011 11:18PM

    Oh sweetie, I'm so sorry you're having to go through all of this. Stay strong and keep doing your best with the food. emoticon

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I Wonder How

Sunday, January 30, 2011

I have been on chemo now for two weeks. I've also have had two radiation treatments. The nasty side effects have started to a small degree already. There is a little hair loss, tiredness, nauseous, dizzy - especially when I am laid back, looking up, or close my eyes, and loss of appetite.

All of this starting so soon makes me wonder how I'll be able to keep with my program. Will I be able to eat healthier foods OK? Will I be able to get in even walking in place exercise? Some days I have to complete this with my walker "Pinkie" now - how ever will I manage. Will be alert enough to post in my teams or even be able to huddle?

My SP friends have all been so supportive and will have my six as they say in the military. Even writing that encourages me! I have learned so much here about being healthy. I don't want to get behind three months ever again.

But, I have to wonder, even if it is out of my control. I DO know and do not have to wonder about is, that I'll do whatever is necessary to save my life!

Thank you SparkPeople for having the such wonder members who have become friends.

I love the quote in my signature line:

Even when life is at its darkest, you are never on the backside of nowhere. The bright side is always there, waiting for you to step back into it and experience your victory.

© 2002 Terri McPherson

It reminds me so much of how much we are connected to the universe. The moon moves to it's dark side and then turns to shine brightly on the the light side. And I wonder how there can be those who doubt.

I go back to radiation tomorrow and I am going to enjoy my day off!!!

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PMFISH 2/1/2011 6:48PM

    Terri get some lemons and squeeze 1/2 lemon in your water at least 3 times a day. This will help to alkalize your system and not even cancer can live in an alkaline system. I made myself protein shakes. After each treatment, get you a clarifying gel for your hair, then shampoo get rid of as much as you can in the hair roots. I was able to keep my hair, it just thinned a bit on one side. Get your self the funniest movies or episodes when you are feeling a bit bummed, turn them on and laugh like there is no tomorrow. Laughter is very healing.

Hang it you are stronger than this nasty cancer. You will be done with it in no time, it only seems like an eternity.

You are in my prayers.


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HEATHER809 1/30/2011 11:24PM

  Your exercise routine may suffer but keep up the good nutrition. I think that definitely helps. Foods that I liked and could tolerate during chemo were jello with fruit, animal crackers, and sandwiches with lots of lettuce. I wish you well.

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SDJOLLY 1/30/2011 7:06PM

    emoticonYou're doing great, Ev. Just take it one day at a time and do what you can, when you can. Please don't over-do it. You're going to make it through this and come out the other side stronger.

Comment edited on: 1/30/2011 7:07:23 PM

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MOM2ACAT 1/30/2011 6:33PM

    emoticon I know it sounds like a cliche, but what helped me get through the worst of my treatments was just taking it one day at a time. Just do what you can on your good days, and be sure not to overdo it on those days either.

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CELLOPLAYER1 1/30/2011 5:53PM


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    emoticon emoticon

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Sad about it

Friday, January 21, 2011

Bob and I were talking as we drove to see the oncologists. That was Monday. We had decided to join the Y to help both of us get some extra exercise after I finish my treatment plan. Yesterday in the paper was a shocker of a headline. They're shutting down our Y at the end of Feb!!! That means the closest one to us will be 45 miles away. All that is left in our county will be Curves and one has to spend most of the time on their feet, which at times is impossible for me without a walker.

I was afraid my initial weight loss was due to the cancer in my body. I was at a plateau for 3 weeks and this week I lost another pound, so I'm quite happy about that. It is just so sad I can't use the strength machines to help. emoticon

I started Chemo on Monday, was marked for my radiation, and had a CT scan Wednesday and Thursday. I should have one more check next Wednesday and then on Thursday start the actual treatments for about 6 weeks. I really was looking forward to joining the Y again.




It's Mardi Gras and I made this wreath several years ago for our front door. This is a good reason to be happy!!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SUZLETALB 1/27/2011 1:57PM

    emoticon emoticon

Thank you for adding me as your friend. Positive waves are coming your way from Toronto Canada.

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GOGIRLOLDER 1/22/2011 5:53PM

    Good wishes to you! There are a lot of exercises you can do from a chair. I saw some here on Spark, if I find it again I will send it to you. Also look for exercises they have for people in offices you can do at your desk. Hope all goes well for you and your hubby too! The wreath is really something. I've never seen one like that before. Very cool. emoticon emoticon

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PUFFPASTRY 1/22/2011 1:43AM

    OH my gosh, I had no idea you were going through all this! Aw, man - tons of good wishes, love and light to you, and DANG about the Y! I used to be a member of the YWCA here, and then they raised their membership fee WAY up and I was priced out of renewing. Their loss, ha ha! (Not really.) Anyway, many hugs, and fingers crossed for a quick departure of nasty cancer cells. emoticon

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HICKOK-HALEY 1/22/2011 12:17AM

    I'm sorry about the Y. I hear about Curves. I didn't like the way they did exercise. Some people do, and that is good, but it wasn't for me. Buy some dumb bells, and find exercises here in sparks. You and your Hubby can do them together!
I like the wreath!

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SDJOLLY 1/21/2011 9:34PM

    That's really too bad about the Y closing down. I know it's not even close to the same thing, but can you make due with a small set of dumbbells or bands to help with strength training?

Hugs and healing vibes are coming your way to help with the chemo treatments.

BTW, LOVE the wreath. It's GORGEOUS!

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GATORJOY 1/21/2011 7:37PM

    That is great! I hope all goes well with tests and chemo. emoticon

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MOM2ACAT 1/21/2011 4:42PM

    Beautiful wreath!

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I forgot

Monday, December 06, 2010

One thing that is really bothering me is I am afraid my weight loss isn't because of my hard work, but because the cancer was in me. As can be seen, I am not having a good day. I have tried to stay positive, but it doesn't seem to working today.



  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PMCFARM 12/6/2010 6:21PM

  Ev...my original oncologist had a sign on his office wall, "Cancer is a WORD...not a SENTENCE". It carried me through some difficult times, when the enemy of mankind was working on my mind. emoticon emoticon emoticon

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INGMARIE 12/6/2010 9:27AM

    aw sweetie, one day at a time.
my prayers are with you.
You will come through this just fine. emoticon

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SHESTOUGH 12/6/2010 9:05AM

    I will pray for you for your recovery from cancer, for your future weight loss, for your mindset and your emotional stability during this difficult time. I am proud of you for facing something this scary head on, so many people give up - but you're not!

Keep thinking positive, you can do it!

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