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Just going with the flow today

Thursday, August 18, 2011

I don't have as much energy today as I had yesterday, but I am not trying to fight against it today, I'm just going with the flow. I know part of it is from chemo. I'm also feeling like my sinuses are draining down into my throat, not enough to make it feel sore, just kind of "icky"; I'm sure that's from my allergies, and probably contributing to my fatigue also. I know that I can't push myself too hard this week because I want to be well on Sunday for my cousin's pizza and ice cream party.

I'm just kind of puttering around the house today, sitting down when I feel the need too. I've also worked on a chemo hat today and I'll go back to that when I'm watching tv later on tonight. I did do 40 minutes of my yoga DVD; it made my legs kind of tired but I think it was still good for me.

I think it will be an early bedtime for me tonight, after doing a little reading.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

NURSNANA 8/18/2011 10:16PM

    Hey Shari, Glad to hear you are taking it easy. I am praying you will get to go to the party this weekend!! It is wonderful that you took the time to start the Facebook page on making caps and hats for anyone going through hair loss. What a great idea! I wish I could do it too. My arthritis has flared up in my hands, and it is difficult to do things like that right now. I will be checking in on the Facebook page and cheering the others on!! It is such a good cause! Take good care my friend. ~hugs~ Nancy

Comment edited on: 8/18/2011 10:19:53 PM

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OUTDOORGIRL69 8/18/2011 8:43PM

    I'll be praying for you to feel better

emoticon

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BETHGILLIGAN 8/18/2011 6:03PM

    sounds like an early night would be a good thing!! Rest! Hopefully, you'll have more energy tomorrow!

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1STATEOFDENIAL 8/18/2011 4:22PM

    I think it's a good idea to not push yourself into anything this week. It will be great for you to see your family this weekend - don't want to have to cut it short due to not feeling well!

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ELLFIN3 8/18/2011 4:12PM

    A pizza and ice cream party sounds great! Rest up so you will feel like going! Enjoy your TV and hat making!!! Love YA!! emoticon Susan

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SMIDGON 8/18/2011 4:10PM

    You have a lot of spunk, girl.

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An idea I had today for my chemo hats

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

If you a regular reader of my blog, you know one of my hobbies is making chemo hats and caps to donate. Last night I had an idea to create a Facebook page for others that might like to do the same thing. To tell you what this page about, I will copy and paste what I have posted on the info page for group. The name of the group is Made With Love Hats for Hair Loss.


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"I enjoy making hats and head coverings for those who have lost their hair because of cancer treatments and other medical conditions.
I thought that others would too, so I started this group so that we could care tips, ideas and. resources for patterns and materials. Feel free to share photos of your creations to!

One reason I do this is that I have cancer myself. It started with stage II breast cancer in 2003; I lost all my hair to chemo then. I was shocked at the prices online stores and catalogs were charging for head coverings for cancer patients, up to $30 for something as simple as a square scarf! So I went to Walmart, bought a bunch of fabric for $1 to $2 per yard, and made my own scarves.

My cancer returned in 2007, in the form of bone mets, I am now stage IV. I had to quit working in 2008. I wanted something constructive to do with my time though. I am on chemo again, (this one is not causing me to lose my hair though), because of my fatigue and other side effects, I am not able to get out and do volunteer work, but I can make hats! I crochet, sew and make them on my Knifty Knitter loom, and donate them to the Susan P. Wheatlake Cancer Resource Center in our town.

I am on a fixed income, so I look for free patterns online, watch for sales on yarn, look for inexpensive but pretty fabrics, and occasionally, friends will donate materials.

Another reason I do this is that I remember how devastating it felt for me to lose my hair; it's one of my most vivid memories of my first experience with cancer in 2003. And I know that many women who have lost hair, like me, can't afford to pay a lot for something to cover their heads, and even if they have the ability to make their own, they may not have the time or energy, so I do this for them. I can't cure cancer, but maybe I can make going through the loss of hair a little bit easier to bear if they have something pretty to wear on their heads.

Please feel free to invite anyone you know to this group that you think would want to help.

Note: This is not a site for selling hats, it's just to help those who make them to donate with resources and ideas."
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I made another hat on my Knifty Knitter loom last night; this time I added a brim to it. I really like how it turned out. I have found with the brim, the hats fit better and are less "floppy". This one will be added to the collection of hats I am donating.



I just had chemo again yesterday. You might wonder how I can make the hats when I am dealing with the side effects, and the pain issues. Actually, making the hats is something I find relaxing, and it often helps me to take my mind off my problems when I have something other than myself to focus on. I have also found that it's pretty hard to feel sorry for myself if I am busy doing something to help someone else.

By the way, the Hopscotch Bear I had from Biggby's didn't prevent my post chemo heartburn this time; I woke up around 2:30am with my GERD acting up. I guess the first time I thought it worked was just a fluke. But I might make a stop at Bigby's on the way home a regular treat for after chemo. I plan to try some other varieties of beverages; I picked up a couple cards that had items that are 287 calories or less and also 201 calories or less.

Here is the link for the Made With Love Hats for Hair Loss page. I hope I don't get into trouble with the "Spark Police" for posting it, as it's not a page that is selling anything.


www.facebook.com/?ref=home#!/pages/M
ade-With-Love-Hats-for-Hair-Loss/25881
0374143359

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BEST_LIFE_NOW 8/18/2011 10:25PM

  Great idea on the FB page. I remember being really touched by all the thoughtful people who made hats when I lost my hair ... it was winter and bitterly cold. I got lots of them. I wore them 24/7 because my head was always cold. I appreciate all of you who took the time to make them! You're angels!

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PIMPINELLAN50 8/18/2011 3:31PM

    Hey Shari;
Your Knitted Chemo Hats all look very soft,pretty and comfortable to wear.
Great idea with a FB Page for others to join, with the same talent/interests as yourself!
On a differnt topic...is "The Neighbour Cat" still coming around?
Have a great evening!
Marianne. emoticon

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CATLADY52 8/18/2011 11:30AM

    I think it is great that you have a fb page for sharing ideas, suggestions and patterns. Sorry about the Hopscotch Bear not working the second time, but at least you have a nice stop after the chemo. emoticon

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SKYEFYR 8/18/2011 10:42AM

  That last hat you pictured is beautiful. I went out to facebook and liked your page. I hope it's a great success!

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PUDLECRAZY 8/17/2011 6:41PM

    Great idea! Thanks for posting the link.

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Chris

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LINDAJ0621 8/17/2011 5:36PM

    I know your hats are very appreciated by the chemo patients! Good for you!
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ELLFIN3 8/17/2011 4:58PM

    Love the idea of the hat site! I was going great guns on hats and then I started reading the book The Help. I need to finish the one I have started for my cousin, then start on more winter ones to donate.
I had so hoped that the Hopscotch Bear would be just what you needed after chemo. Oh well keep trying!
Have a fabulous evening! LOVE YA!!
emoticon Susan

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1STATEOFDENIAL 8/17/2011 4:45PM

    I think that creating page on fb is a great idea to share tips and ideas for the hats. Getting more people interested and involved will help spread the joy in helping others.

Too bad the Hopscotch Bear didn't do the trick this time. It might have been a fluke, or it could work part of the time, so I agree with getting that, or something similar, after chemo. Even if it doesn't help with the GERD every time, at least it helps the soul by giving you something good to enjoy.

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Chemo day again

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

No leg cramps last night or this morning, but I woke up about 2 hours before I needed to be up, and it was hard to get back to sleep. I was slow to get moving this morning, but by the time I had to leave for chemo (my appointment was for 11:30am) I was feeling a little better.

After chemo, I had to go to the pain clinic and get a refill for my pain pill prescription. I don't why they changed it, but they don't call them in any more, you have to go out there and get the prescription from them, and take it to the pharmacy yourself. So I had about a 15 minute wait in Rite Aid waiting for it to be filled. After that, I went to Biggbys to get a Hopscotch Bear before going home.

Had my soak in the tub shortly after getting home and then got into pajamas. Hip is feeling better but the shoulder is still really hurting today. Tomorrow we have another cold front coming, so I am expecting I'll probably be hurting tomorrow too. But at least I can stay home, I have nowhere I have to go, and I don't have to be in any hurry to start my day.

I finished a couple of hats on my Nifty Knitter loom last night. This one that I made out of chenille yarn is a little too loose fitting to work for a chemo cap, so I am just going to keep this one for myself. Next time I will add a brim to make it a little thicker so it will fit better.


This is another one I made with textured yarn, that I am adding to my collection of other hats I made that I will be donating.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BEST_LIFE_NOW 8/17/2011 7:48AM

 
Did the hopscotch bear make you feel better this week? I hope so! emoticon

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CIRANDELLA 8/16/2011 10:42PM

    That Hopscotch Bear sounds like a wonderful, soothing, and delicious reward after your chemo treatment, plus all the pain you've had lately - great choice! And those chemo caps are really pretty...you're so creative! Rest up and take it easy tomorrow...because you can, and because it will feel good! Sending you lots of gentle emoticon

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BUNNONE 8/16/2011 9:48PM

    I love the hats. How long does it take to make one? Sounds like a nifty tool you have to make them on. emoticon

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ELLFIN3 8/16/2011 9:34PM

    I like the hats! I hope the Hopscotch Bear help like it did last week! Love YA!!! emoticon Susan

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NURSNANA 8/16/2011 7:36PM

    Hey Shari, The chemo hats are so pretty! I especially love the blue one, it will keep you warm this winter. Hope you enjoyed your Hopscotch Bear, and also that it keeps the heartburn away tonight. Have a relaxing evening my friend, and a restful night.

~hugs~
Nancy
emoticon emoticon emoticon

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CATHYHASSPARK 8/16/2011 4:45PM

    You take care of yourself , glad you are resting at home, my prayers go out to you ! Those hats are beautiful!

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Up early after an early bedtime last night

Monday, August 15, 2011

I was so exhausted last night, I went to bed at 8pm. I slept well, except for waking up twice during the night with painful cramps in my left (the side with the sciatica and bad hip) leg. I'm not sure why the cramps were so bad last night; I was well hydrated; I drank a lot more water than usual yesterday in an attempt to give myself some energy, and I've been taking my magnesium supplement twice a day. I think it's just one more side effect of my chemo. Anyway, the pain from the cramps is lingering on; my hip and knee really hurt today, so I think the sciatic nerve was in the area where I had the cramping.

I was up at 6am. I took my time getting ready to go out and do my grocery shopping. I wasn't as tired, but I was moving slow this morning. I finally got out the door a little before 8am. Had to throw on a hoodie jacket this morning, it was only 50F; not complaining though! It was refreshing for a change. It did warm up as the day went on, it's 79F right now.

It was kind of tough getting through the store. I would have used one of the electric carts but the baskets weren't big enough to hold everything I needed today. At least I was able to check out quickly; I just had to wait for the lady ahead of me to pay for her stuff as I got into line.

I got home a little before 9am. I was going to try to tough it out without a pain pill, because I didn't want to spend today feeling as tired as I did yesterday, but at 9:30am, I gave in and took it, I was hurting so much. I sat down in my recliner and watched tv for a couple of hours, and worked on a chemo hat, ( I am making one on my round Knifty Knitter loom). It finally got the pain under control enough where I felt like I could at least enjoy the rest of the day, and while it did make me a little more tired, I am still not as fatigued as I was yesterday. I have been trying to stay off my feet as much as I can today; no workout today, I need to be as rested as I can be for my chemo tomorrow. I am hoping that when the muscles that were cramping start to feel better that my all over pain level will be better too.

I am already planning on a soak in the tub when I get home from chemo tomorrow; I bought some Baby Magic Lavender and Chamomile baby bath that I am going to try out. I heard a lot of good things about how adults like the Johnson's & Johnsons Lavender baby bath for themselves, but the Baby Magic brand was cheaper so I bought that one instead.

I am really hoping that I will be feeling much better next weekend than this past one. One of my cousins is visiting from Massachusetts, she comes to Michigan once a year to see everyone, and the cousin she is staying with is having some of the extended family come over on Sunday for a pizza and ice cream party. I will also be seeing one of my second cousin's and her family, who I haven't seen in years. I can eat pizza with my gastroparesis, as long as it's just 2-3 slices and I stick to just cheese for a topping. I don't eat pizza very often though, so that will be a treat too.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

AMYBINTN 8/16/2011 2:14PM

    I hope your chemo goes OK and that you're feeling better for the weekend. The pizza and ice cream party sounds like a lot of fun!
emoticon emoticon emoticon amy

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SKYEFYR 8/16/2011 11:04AM

  The trick to any scented oil product is to find ones that don't use just fragrance oils, but also use essential oils. The essential oils will act with our body chemistry to make us feel better. Cheaper may not work as well because cheaper may mean it's only fragrance oil.

If you have a few dollars to splurge on yourself, may I recommend going to the local health food store and checking out their supply of essential oils. Be careful with chamomile, there are two kinds (german and roman I think, I know for sure one of them is german). Test smell them because one smells wonderful and the other is not so pleasant. Once you find a couple oils you like you can always order them in small bulk sizes online too. A few drops in your bath oil can make a huge difference in how you're feeling!

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CIRANDELLA 8/16/2011 8:46AM

    I love your idea of the lavender baby bath! Sounds so soothing...both to the nose and to the rest of the body! I hope all will go well this coming weekend so that you can enjoy your cousin's visit, too. Good luck today at chemo - you're a trouper! emoticon

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CELLOPLAYER1 8/15/2011 9:25PM

    emoticon

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ELLFIN3 8/15/2011 5:14PM

    Make a rest week so you can enjoy your family over the weekend! What is a Knifty Knitter Loom? Is it easy to use? And what do the chemo hats look like? Have a great evening!! emoticon
Love YA!!! Susan

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1STATEOFDENIAL 8/15/2011 4:40PM

    I hope you get some much needed rest tonight (not just sleep, but actual rest).

Also, you have probably done it, but just in case - I've found the pizza blot (which I refused to do until my GP came around) does help remove some oil and thus fat, which makes the little pizza I do have (usually from frozen with a smidge extra cheese sprinked on top) sit better. If I remember it within a minute after it comes out of the oven it gets off even more oil, but then it is 2 layers of paper towels under a hot pad! haha

Hopefully your whole week goes well and you can really enjoy the weekend with all the visiting family.

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NURSNANA 8/15/2011 4:35PM

    Hey Shari, Sorry you had cramps in your leg last night. I have had those before, and they really hurt. Glad you are not as tired today. Hey, I have squeezed in over $300 worth of groceries in those electric scooters! I have to buy a lot when our family comes home! I pack everything in tight, and use every inch! The clerks in the grocery store are really impressed when I check out!! haha! I hope you enjoy your soak in the tub tomorrow! I have used the Lavender & Chamomile baby wash before and it is wonderful! :) I will be praying for you tomorrow, and also for you to feel well enough to go to the party with your family. I don't get to see my cousins very often, but when we are together it is great! I am very thankful for cooler weather today! It has been a long, hot summer here in Virginia. Take good care my friend! ~hugs~ Nancy

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Very tired today

Sunday, August 14, 2011

I finally started feeling like my sinus headache was going away around 8pm last night. Still very tired today though. I didn't do my grocery shopping as planned because I still felt wiped out from not feeling good yesterday. Still very tired today.

My legs were still feeling very achy so around 11am I decided to soak in the tub for a little while. That made me feel better for a short time.
I did try to do my yoga DVD after that but could only do 20 minutes.

I haven't been doing much today, just allowing myself a lazy day. Planning on going to bed early tonight and hoping I can do my shopping tomorrow morning.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MAGS05 8/16/2011 1:26PM

  Hope you are feeling better! I just went through that - love soaking in warm baths, it does help!!! Seasonal weather changes really do a number on me! Take care of yourself!
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JIBBIE49 8/15/2011 12:55AM

    emoticon

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1STATEOFDENIAL 8/14/2011 9:52PM

    Lazy days are important to have now and again. I'm glad you listened to your body and spent most of the day relaxing.

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ELLFIN3 8/14/2011 8:00PM

    I hope by you having a lazy day today you will be feeling better tomorrow! And 20 minutes of yoga is great! Enjoy your evening! emoticon Love YA!!! Susan

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CIRANDELLA 8/14/2011 6:06PM

    I'm sorry to hear the achiness is still going on... but when I've had muscle pain that didn't respond to medication, a soak in the tub always has helped. Think of that soak as a little physical therapy, something as beneficial to your body, in its own important way, as yoga can be! Glad you decided to slow down your pace a wee bit and shop early tomorrow instead. You're a wise woman :) emoticon

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JOAN68 8/14/2011 5:17PM

    JUST REST TODAY. WHEN THE BODY SAYS REST, THEN REST IT IS. ONLY MAKES YOU FEEL WORSE IF YOU PUSH YOURSELF TO MUCH. TAKE CARE. ENJOY YOUR DAY. JOAN

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MOM-MOM8 8/14/2011 4:36PM

    Oh how I know how you are feeling. I hope you continue to feel better and are up and about tomorrow

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ROCKYCPA 8/14/2011 4:21PM

    Take care of yourself and glad that you are feeling better.

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