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Things are looking up!

Sunday, March 06, 2011

Big, BIG NEWS this week... I spent Wednesday at medical appointments. The doctors told me I can go back to work in May. I am soooo psyched!

Iíve been Sparking with the intention of an eventual return to work, and Iím constantly looking at things from the point of view how I will adapt what works now (when I have very little energy). I figure if I can do it with little energy, I can do it once Iím back at work. A few lessons learned so far:

ē This week we found organic milk in glass bottles at FarmBoy. Iíve started using one of those bottles for my water Ė one before lunch and one after, and Iím sure to get my 64 oz per day. So Iíll put a bottle in my Ďreturn to workí stash.
ē My Ďstealth exerciseí that I do every time I go to the washroom will, of course, continue when I go back to work. Iíll also be taking the stairs one flight up or down to go to the washroom, instead of going on my floor.
ē I also want to take the stairs to my 6th floor office, so Iíll have to start Ďdoing stairsí at home (we have a two story house, with a basement) to build up the stamina. Hey, cardio, there you are!
ē Much easier for me to cook large batches and eat the same things for lunches, than get creative and try to do something fresh for each meal. Plus, I find leftovers taste better the second time around anyway!
ē Iíll be relying on hearty soups for lunches in the winter/cold or rainy weather, and salads during hot weather. I am not a fan of sandwiches every day, although once per week is ok.
ē Iíll have to develop a strategy for when co-workers want to go out for lunch. Some places around my work are very ok, but most are Italian so lots of carbs, cheese and sodium! Yum for the tastebuds, but not for the rest of me!

Aside from that, the leftovers of the cancer treatments will finally be tied up by end of September; that is... Iím adjusting (finally!) to the Tamoxifen and my energy is coming back. The Ďdog earsí are being removed in August/September once the edema is gone, and my toenails are being dealt with in April/May with minor surgeries. I canít wait to be able to wear socks and shoes! (Itís the little things that give me joy LOL!)

On another front, my son is playing soccer again this year, but is on a different team. Now that he has friends with licenses and cars, we wonít have to traipse to all the practices like we used to (actually, DH used to as I didnít have the stamina). I want to be able to go to all the games this year (except for out-of-town tournaments), especially since itís likely his last year of playing.

So yeah, things are definitely looking up. And how was YOUR week???

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TRACYZABELLE 3/10/2011 5:22AM


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KELPIE57 3/8/2011 2:52AM

    So happy for you! Keep it up! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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MEMARE 3/7/2011 7:53AM

    I'm glad things are looking up for you! emoticon
I loved your list of lessons. Had to chuckle at the 'stealth exercise' I do that too! emoticon
Thanks for sharing your joy. emoticon emoticon

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JULIEANNCAN 3/7/2011 12:00AM

    I'm glad that things are looking up! Yay!

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JMCADE 3/6/2011 6:09PM

    Wow, I cn hear the joy in your writing. So happy for you. You have so much to look forwrd to and to plan for. Sounds like you are well on your way!!!

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LISED58 3/6/2011 4:07PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

Oh Seawave, I am so relieved, excited and happy for you. It's like a prayer being answered.

What fabulous news. YES!!!!!!!

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MIMISCHENK 3/6/2011 1:21PM


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CO-CREATOR 3/6/2011 1:19PM

    I'm so glad things are looking up for you!

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Plan for March 2011

Monday, February 28, 2011

My priority is still recovery after completing my cancer treatments in November 2010. My metabolism has definitely changed, and my previous cancer, age and new meds are compounding that, so I need to reacquaint myself with my body and how I react to things. My first two goals therefore target my physical health, i.e. nutrition and exercise.

emoticon NUTRITION emoticon

Iíve been slacking off on tracking food in the past few months, so I want to track food every day in March. With the change in my metabolism, I donít want to take anything for granted. Everything old is new again!

Iím aiming for a high protein/low carb diet because thatís whatís worked for me in the past. Iíll adjust weekly as I see how I react to it now. Obviously, this also means being more precise in my meal planning. Calorie target is 1500 /day (range between 1290 and 1640 cal/day; my caloric distribution looks something like this:
Breakfast about 300 cals
Snack about 100 cals
Lunch about 300 cals
Snack 100 calories
Supper about 600 calories
Snack 100 calories (with meds, before bed)
Keep sodium under 1500 mg/day
And, you know, WATER, WATER, WATER

Iíll have one Ďfreeí day per week, where tracking wonít be expected but where Iíll still make every effort to make wise food choices.

emoticon EXERCISE emoticon

Tracking food isnít going to mean much unless itís combined with increasing my activities. Unfortunately, Iím limited by the state of my toenails (chemo side effect). I have minor surgeries scheduled in April/May to address that, but in the meantime Iím also gearing up to return to work, hopefully in May, after having been away for 1.5 years.

I want to do some cardio every day (SP says I need to burn 274 calories per day to reach my goals). Iíve bought a Leslie Sansone walking DVD and dancing to help with that. Iíll also continue with weight training with free weights, my stealth exercise when I go to the washroom, and my DH and I are looking into taking some Tai Chi classes (if I can do them barefoot).

One of my return-to-work goals is to take the stairs to my 6th floor office instead of taking the elevator.

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I know I wonít have as much time once I return to work, but while I do have this extra time I want to spend some of it reading and responding to blogs and to discussion threads. I know Iíve greatly benefited from othersí blogs and messages, and learned and been encouraged so much. I want to continue that circle of support.

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My energy levels are starting (I hope!) to regularize, so I want to consistently do 15 minutes per day of Zone work. I also want to complete the following projects:
1st (partial) week of March: Organize recipes for better access Ė this will be ongoing over the month as I plan my menus, and is a huge step in simplifying meal preparation for us
2nd week: Sort through and toss old spices; organize and label spice jars
3rd week (March break!): Scan Everglades slides before they deteriorate, pick a few to print and frame
4th week: finish painting the Ĺ bath reno (which I didnít do in January, nor in February!).
5th (partial) week: Organize my desk


Music has always been a love, and Iíll continue with my piano playing and singing (just for me, nothing public!) Ė I want to re-learn Henry Manciniís arrangement of Love Story this month (I used to play it 30 years ago!), as well as start up on some new pieces. I also want to get out and do some photography, and may join an internet group that provides feedback and tips.

In CONCLUSION, I have to say that it looks like a lot, but it also feels like I'm just touching the tip of the iceberg.There is so much LIFE out there, and I can't wait to get at it all!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JMCADE 3/2/2011 8:57PM

    This is so great tht you have mapped out what you want to accomplish this month. I hope everything goes well with your plans but remember to roll with the flow if there are ever any hiccups along the way.

you can do it.

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JUSTYNA7 3/1/2011 1:40PM

    I think we are ready for more than baby steps and what you have planned seems like a good balance. It's not forever, just for today.

That said, I am suddenly reminded of my personal trainer. He had his flaws but he had me start with so few exercises I thought I would laugh. Then he said we could add 10%. Well, 10% of 10 is only 1. I balked. I wanted to do more. I didn't want to waste my money or the time I was giving myself to train. But he was right. Each week I added ten percent more and by the end I was sweating like crazy every workout... but succeeding. My way I would have crashed and burned. If that has any meaning to you, take it. If not, pitch it. emoticon

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CO-CREATOR 3/1/2011 8:44AM

    Great goals!

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KELPIE57 3/1/2011 8:35AM

    Sounds like a plan, just make sure you add in plenty of time for passion, that will give you the energy to do the rest! emoticon

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LISED58 2/28/2011 10:43PM

    This is SO absolutely positive and wonderful to read, Seawave. Thank you for giving me a smile. It's great to hear how you're reconnecting with your passions. It's good that you're going to track your food intake even if for now you won't be burning as many as you'd like. When I started tracking in January, I discovered that my highest calorie intake is in the norning, and more often than not, it's my lunch and then dinner with the fewest. That's probably because you'd have to pay me to burn calories in the evening!! Hee hee.

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FMCDANIEL 2/28/2011 6:14PM

  Wow you have a lot planned for March! But where there is a will there is a way. Once you get all of this done in March check the want ads for superwoman needed.
Best of luck!!

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20 Things That Make Me Happy

Saturday, February 26, 2011

I joined a new team this week - WeBlog - and the prompt today was "20 things that make me happy", to acknowledge the 20 members (so far)... what a great thing to think about! In no particular order (and certainly not comprehensive!)

1. My DH of 23 years... I am so blessed to have met him and to share my life with him
2. My DS of 17 years, who just yesterday deemed us to be "cool parents"
3. Dancing and singing along to music, volume turned up full blast - (My neighbors can hear and probably sing along, but that doesn't mean it's too loud, does it???)
4. Being near the ocean... there's an energy in the sea wind and the waves that you just don't get on a lake
5. Being in the forest... the cool air, the smells, the wind through the leaves...
6. Getting that great shot (photo)!
7. Rounding a corner on my bike or in the car, and seeing an unexpected vista
8. Being able to do something I thought I wasn't able to
9. My friends - old and new!
10. Finishing a really, really difficult puzzle (jigsaw, crossword, sudoku, kakuro, whatever!)
11. A really good cappucino
12. Making someone smile or laugh
13. Trusting my instincts, and being right
14. Learning
15. Hugs
16. Being part of a really good team
17. Volunteering, doing something that others find helpful or useful
18. Reading and writing
19. Travel, exploring new places and cultures
20. Thinking about things that make me happy!

What makes YOU happy?
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MEMARE 3/7/2011 7:56AM

    I liked this! emoticon
Great points of happiness.

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LISED58 2/27/2011 3:00PM

    What a wonderful moment. Thank you so much for sharing this. Reading it put a smile on my face so that makes me happy... and a whole lot of other gratitudes for what I have and don't have. :)
Thanks a bunch Seawave!!
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KARENE10 2/27/2011 9:11AM

    I really like your list~all really nice,happy things to think about. AND you didn't mention food(I would have emoticon).
I'm glad that you gave me something so positive to think about to start my day off~Thanks:)

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KJNLDE 2/26/2011 8:15PM

    Great post! It is reminding me to keep these things in mind and make sure that I experience at least one thing that makes me happy each day! Thank you!

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GO-LOEW 2/26/2011 8:00PM

    Sometimes I long to live in a forest with a view of the ocean. Sometimes I live on the ocean with a view of the palm trees on the beach.

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KASEYCOFF 2/26/2011 2:48PM

    "What makes YOU happy?"

Reading blogs like yours, hon--!

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CO-CREATOR 2/26/2011 11:12AM

    Its so nice to think about such positive things. I'll be posting my list later today.

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Mostly appts today!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

As expected, I will be getting a root canal in April. Better than an extraction, I guess, but ouch! Also, my toenail issues will be settled in April/May with two minor surgeries. I wonít be properly back on my feet until mid-May! But it is good news, because the doc initially wanted to try to wait up to another year to see if the problems would straighten themselves out. So for now Iíll keep on wearing my clogs, stay inside when thereís snow, and generally focuss on free weights and learning to use the exercise ball and a few other accessories Iíve bought. Iím thinking of checking out tai chi Ė I donít think you have to wear shoes for that??? Does anyone out there know?

Not much else to write about today, as my day was taken up with medical appointments. Nice to get three done in a day, but exhausting...

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MSPRIS3 2/25/2011 10:51AM

    There was a Tai Chi place right underneath my old appartment in CP (it's still there). They don't wear shoes there, from what I've seen

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KELPIE57 2/25/2011 2:50AM

    Good news!

My mum has taken up tai chi, after a heart attack, and another friend teaches it. I think that you can be barefoot for it. emoticon

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EYES_ON_THEPRAZ 2/25/2011 12:23AM

    Double ouch! Toenail issues are no fun, but I'm glad it will be fixed soon. Take care

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LISED58 2/24/2011 10:22PM

    That's great if you can get up and going in May - you'll be rising with the beautiful flowers just in time for Spring!

You don't need to wear shoes but there are different methods. You may want to check first with the teacher to make sure you'll be able to freely do all of the movements. It's really a relaxing activity, and fun to learn the moves.
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Moving at a different speed.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Completed a six-week ďLiving Well Beyond CancerĒ workshop tonight. It was a great group of people, very open to sharing their experiences and thoughts for dealing with life in general. Iíve been off work for over a year, and it helped to have such a dynamic group of people to discuss things with. I so miss my teams at work!

Tomorrow I hope to get answers for two key things. The first thing is Iím going to find out if I can ramp up the exercise and safely take on aquafitness despite the chemo-related problems with my toenails. I havenít worn closed shoes for over a year, so no boots and stuck inside when itís snowing. But I fell in love with aquafitness last week, and I walked just a bit and wound up with both big toes infected. Ugh. I belatedly recalled that the doctor said something about not soaking the feet... There has to be something that can be done! The whiny brat in me does not want to have to wait a year to take up aquafitness, and is stamping her little feet in frustration!

The second thing is Iím going to a dental surgeon to determine if I need a root canal or a tooth extraction - it will be one or the other. A cavity that had a temporary filling grew under the gum line Ė a common thing, apparently, with radiation therapy Ė so that tooth is shot. My fingers will be crossed for good news on both fronts, although with regard to the tooth Iím not sure what constitutes good news LOL!

So things are moving along, and as much as I try to direct my energies, I am not as productive or forward moving as I would like. Slow and steady wins the race, I guess. I need to bury the sprinter in me and pull out the long distance runner!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SASSACAIA 2/24/2011 11:39AM

    I hope you are able to do the aquafitness as well. I love any kind of water exercise.

And yes - slow and steady DOES win the race! Keep at it!!

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CO-CREATOR 2/24/2011 8:08AM

    I hope you are able to do the aquafitness. Its so important to find an exercise we enjoy. I admire your strength, and hope you receive positive news.

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GRACIOUSGRAPE 2/24/2011 7:52AM

    Wow, hang in there. You are a survivor, Hon! You are strong, resourceful, and, above all, determined and STUBBORN! You go, girl! I have also had two root canals and a tooth extraction. Not so bad. Only thing is that, with the extraction, then you have to have the money for an implant. I have learned to live without the tooth, for now (luckily it is a back one so not noticeable.) Glad you had such a great experience at your meeting. My thoughts are with you! emoticon

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TRACYZABELLE 2/24/2011 6:38AM

    Many years of wellness are wished upon you!

Good luck at the dentist.. never a fun place to go!

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EYES_ON_THEPRAZ 2/24/2011 1:13AM

    Ouch! Good luck at the dentist!

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KELPIE57 2/24/2011 1:06AM

    My brat is with your brat....... She wants in now too! I am having to leaern that I don't always understand the lesson..........................yet
! emoticon emoticon

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GO-LOEW 2/24/2011 12:09AM

    I hope that your news is good tomorrow, although like you said, how do you know good news when one possibility is a root canal and the other is a tooth extraction. Actually, I have had both (without the added issues of chemo) and they were both okay experiences. I didn't get to finish my movie at the root canal and am still wondering how it ended.

You definitely need the long-distance runner on your weight loss healthy lifestyle journey. You can do it, one way or the other.

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LISED58 2/24/2011 12:06AM

    I support you 100% . "Slow and steady wins the race."

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