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8/29/14 4:42 P

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We are having rain today too; it almost feels chilly out; not complaining about that though, it's better than dealing with heat and humidity.

Had my yearly checkup with the eye doctor today; everything was good! It's nice to have at least one area of my health that is normal!


My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, and living with Stage IV breast cancer since 2007.

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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8/28/14 8:52 P

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Another busy day today. Now we've got rain. It's suppose to rain on and off thru Saturday. At least it's not hot and I can still have some windows open. I'm hoping it stops for a while tomorrow morning so I can get a run in. I've been doing pretty good lately. The iron pills are really making a difference. I've decided to not go ahead with the chiropractic care at this time. It's really not what I thought it would be and it's expensive. Insurance will pay quite a bit, but it still would cost me about $70 a week. I can't do that right now. Too many other things I want that money to go towards. DH thinks that I should get a referral to physical therapy instead. We shall see.

I hope everyone is doing well. Have a nice evening!

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8/27/14 9:10 P

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Good evening! I had a busy morning and then I worked all day so now is the first time I've been able to get on here. I went to the chiropractor yesterday and this morning. Not sure if I will go back though. I have 2 more appt. this week, but this treatment is going to cost me $759. I don't have that kind of money right now and there is no guarantee that I will feel any better. Every one I talk to, tells me I'm nuts if I go and pay that amount. I'm going to call them tomorrow morning and tell them I will do some adjustments but everything else is out.

I have another full day of work tomorrow and then I have Friday and Saturday off so far.

Rain is in the forecast. We could see lots of it too.

I hope everyone had a nice day!

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8/27/14 3:42 P

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Inga, it is nice to see you posting here.

I was able to get to exercise class today. That makes three days in a row! I've been feeling a little better each day now for over a week. It's so nice to feel better again.

Wishing everyone a great day.

Kay from Tennessee



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8/27/14 9:36 A

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emoticon emoticon emoticon to everyone! May God send his healing love onto any health problems and His wisdom to Dr.'s to cure our ailments.

Have a good Wednesday all! emoticon emoticon

Inga
Co-Leader of Breast Cancer Survivor's & Those Who Care. Days Go By...So Live Your Life.

Motivational Quote:
"You have within you a supply of energy limited only by your ability to discover and develop it. In body, mind and spirit, you are endowed with capabilities far greater than you know, keep reaching for your potential. "




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8/26/14 10:03 P

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Seems like we all have been having health issues lately. I think it's time we catch a break!

Kay from Tennessee



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8/26/14 5:22 P

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Kay, I knew you were not lazy! But I understand that feeling; I felt that way too before my last blood transfusion. I know it made me feel better to have it confirmed that my fatigue wasn't all in my head.

Inga, great to see you posting again! I'm so sorry you are having pain issues, my prayers are with you.

I had my monthly oncologist appointment this morning, didn't get the best news regarding my lab work. My tumor markers are still steadily rising, which means the Aromasin and Afinitor I am on are not working. I asked if we could try increasing the dose of the Afinitor, since I am on the lowest dose of that drug, but the problem is that a higher dose will not be compatible with the drug I take for my gastroparesis. He's going to look into it further, but most likely, I will probably have to go back on the I.V. chemo.


My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, and living with Stage IV breast cancer since 2007.

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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8/26/14 10:26 A

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Wishing all of you good health, sometimes we have so many health issues to deal with. Praying all will be good for all of you. emoticon emoticon emoticon

I have issues as well, my spine/back is very messed up dealing with lordosis/kyphosis curvatures. I keep working pretty hard around the house, pain worsens as day goes on, been in therapy, but now am trying to do the exercises at home to help. emoticon emoticon emoticon

summer did zip by, I did not do as many things like beaches, etc. this year. I definitely felt great about getting my son back and forth to MN for his camp, long drive, lifetime chance for him!

Hope the week goes well ladies. How do you like this hew format on Spark People? I am ok with it.

Inga
Co-Leader of Breast Cancer Survivor's & Those Who Care. Days Go By...So Live Your Life.

Motivational Quote:
"You have within you a supply of energy limited only by your ability to discover and develop it. In body, mind and spirit, you are endowed with capabilities far greater than you know, keep reaching for your potential. "




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8/26/14 3:59 A

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Kay-I'm glad they were able to find what was wrong. I too had gone to the dr. Cuz I just felt like my energy level wasn't where it should be. Turned out my iron was low. I've been taking iron and am starting to get a little more energy again. I've ran the last couple of days and have done pretty good.

Today I go see a chiropractor. I'm hoping it's my lower back that is causing all of the pain in by leg and that she can help that. Plus my neck has been so messed up. Hoping to eliminate some of these headaches I get.

Have a wonderful day!

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8/25/14 6:54 P

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I really don't want this summer to end! I feel like I'm just beginning to enjoy it after all the fatigue I had to deal with right in the middle of the summer. Fortunately, that is lifting. This morning, I went to the new functional doctor that I saw for the first time two weeks ago to go over all the blood tests that she did. I tested very positive for Epstein Barr virus (like momo), mycoplasma pneunoniae (walking pneumonia) and two other viruses. No wonder why I was so fatigued!. This is all in addition to getting diagnosed last month with both crohn's disease and celiac sprue by my GI doc at Vanderbilt. The functional medicine doc says the chemo left my immune system at a lower level so it was harder for me to fight off the viral load. When I saw my test results, I was floored. At least it confirms I wasn't being lazy....there were days when I was feeling like it was all in my head.

Since I'm feeling better, I'm going to try just continuing on with a very healthy diet and take some steps to boost my immune system. If that doesn't work, then I will need to take antivirals. Normally, people with healthy immune systems can recover from these viruses without any intervention.

I have one last test to do. It appears my adrenals may be shot. My blood sodium and carbon dioxide levels have been consistently low for almost a year. That's an indication of adrenal insufficiency. The stress of having cancer and all the associated treatments may have done in my adrenal glands. It will be a while before I get the results of that test back. I feel like my adrenals may be the last piece of this complicated puzzle.

The good news is that I do seem to be on the mend. That's the most important thing in my book. Honestly, I'm getting tired of finding out so many things have gone haywire.
emoticon

Kay from Tennessee



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8/25/14 3:40 P

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We had a thunderstorm move through early this afternoon; nothing severe, just some heavy rain. The forecast said that the high today would be 87, but so far, as of 3:40pm, it's only reached 77.

My summer has gone by fast too; mine was taken up with so many doctor appointments and tests, a colonoscopy and 2 upper endoscopy. I hope that next summer I can spend that time doing something fun instead.


My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, and living with Stage IV breast cancer since 2007.

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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8/25/14 7:52 A

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It was so steamy yesterday. We've had storms this morning and now the sun should come out and get steamy again. Today should be the last day of this hopefully. I don't like walking outside and having my glasses fog up.

Today I will have the house to myself this morning. The boys have classes. emoticon

It's so hard to believe that summer is coming to an end. So many things I didn't do this year. We started out with good intentions. Just didn't work out that way. There's always next year.

Have a nice Monday!

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8/24/14 7:57 A

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Good Morning!

Hot and humid today! A chance of strong storms tonight. Sure wish it would get rid of this humidity. Woke up with a headache this morning. I didn't sleep well last night either. Too many things on my mind. No nap for me cuz I work later this afternoon.

Have a nice day!

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8/23/14 3:39 P

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After a pretty good week with a little more energy, having a bit of a setback today; just a temporary one though. This time, it's just because I had a really hard time getting to sleep last night. Been fighting the urge to take a nap today because I won't be able to sleep tonight again if I do. But I accomplished my goals today of doing a half hour workout and getting the laundry done.


My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, and living with Stage IV breast cancer since 2007.

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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8/23/14 8:02 A

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We haven't had many hot/humid days either. It's getting too late in the year for the humidity, but it's the start of the State Fair and it's always hot during it. I won't be able to go this year because I have to work.

Today is the Farmer's Market. I haven't been there in a while so I'm anxious to see what they have.

Have a nice Sat.

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8/22/14 3:48 P

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Becky, I have ulcers too, so I know what you're going through, hope you feel better and that they heal soon!

Kay, maybe you just overdid it a bit this week; hope you were able to finish the weeding before it got too hot.

We haven't had that many hot and humid days this summer, but it's starting to creep in now. Can't really complain though because for the most part, it's been a pretty comfortable summer here.


My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, and living with Stage IV breast cancer since 2007.

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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8/22/14 3:24 P

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Happy Saturday All!

It's so nice to see so many people posting here over the last 24 hours.

Becky, I hope you can get your ulcer and iron level situation figured out. I think I always wonder if something "all in my head" too.

I've been having a good week, but today I woke up "tired" again. I hope it's just a one day thing and not another month and a half of fatigue. Hubby and I did a little badly needed weeding this morning. It's too hot outside right now to finish it, so we will hopefully finish it in the morning when things are cooler again.

Kay from Tennessee



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8/22/14 8:26 A

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Happy Friday!

It's been warm and humid here! So far, it's cloudy so I'm hoping to get out for a run soon.

I finally got a call from the Dr. office yesterday. All of my blood work was fine except my iron is low. So now I'm back on the iron pills. i've been frustrated because I knew something wasn't right. I was beginning to think it was in my head. I go back in a month and I'm going to have to talk to him about my ulcers. They've been acting up and I think I need to see if the meds. I took got rid of the H pylori or not. I'm thinking it didn't.

My boys start classes at the University on Monday. Schools don't go back until the day after Labor Day. Next week will be a confusing week until I get all of the schedules down. Plus my middle son is moving out for the first time come Sept.

Have a nice day!

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8/21/14 8:14 P

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Hello All, hope everyone had a great day! Hot and humid here in Ohio, had storms this am as well, hoping that it is a sunny, beautiful weekend. Today was a good day, I made it to the gym and got some time in on the elliptical. emoticon

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8/21/14 3:50 P

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Thank you Kay! I went grocery shopping yesterday and noticed a big difference in how I felt because of the transfusion. Last week, after shopping, carrying the bags up my steps and into the house, and putting them away, I was short of breath of afterwards, but this time, I did all of that and did not even feel the need to sit and rest after I got done!

I'm still needing to pace myself, (mainly because of the chronic pain issues) but overall, still feeling pretty good since the transfusion. I hope the good effects of it will last for awhile.


My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, and living with Stage IV breast cancer since 2007.

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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8/21/14 9:37 A

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It's always good to hear that everyone is feeling better. I think I have gained weight, not a good thing. Too many good things to eat when the kids were home. I have doctors appts today and tomorrow so I'm off the city. I will bring back 3 of the grands for the weekend for one of the last days to play in the pool and go on the boat without needing jackets in the fall. There's a regatta on the lake this weekend which might be fun for them to watch. School started for some of them so the schedules are changing, and so it goes.

Everyone stay on the sunny side for the rest of the week!

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8/21/14 8:02 A

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Good Morning!

The warm humid air has returned! I tried to do a bit of running last night but decided walking was good enough. After 8 hrs on my feet, I didn't want to push it plus it was too warm. I did manage to get a pretty good nights sleep last night so the walk really helped.

Storms this morning. Hopefully I will be able to get some exercise in after work again today. We could have storms off and on today with a heat index in the mid to upper 90's.



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8/21/14 7:09 A

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Well, I made it to line dancing class on Tuesday and really enjoyed it. I had forgotten a lot, but it came back pretty quickly. My energy levels are definately on the rise again, thank goodness! I've been actually getting some cleaning done around the house and being a lot more active throughout the day. I have no idea what the problem was for the last month and a half, I'm just glad that it seems to be resolving on it's own. I have been gluten free for a few weeks now and the medicine that my GI doc gave me for my Crohn's is helping so all this fatigue could have been GI related. I also think that I just don't have a lot of reserve after going through treatment so it's a lot easier to get worn down and harder to bounce back. Who knows? LIke I say, I'm just glad these major fatigue issue seems to be resolving.

Shari, I hope you are feeling a lot better since your transfusion and that you are able to enjoy this week.

Wishing everyone a good day!

Hugs,
Kay

Kay from Tennessee



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8/19/14 3:46 P

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Patricia, I am so sorry; I'm keeping her, and you and your family, in my prayers.

Kay, I'm sure once you start the line dancing, it will all come back to you, enjoy and have fun!

We had some thundershowers this morning, and it's been raining off and on all day. The weather has made my hip pain flare up so I decided to wait til tomorrow to do my grocery shopping.


My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, and living with Stage IV breast cancer since 2007.

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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8/19/14 8:08 A

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Patrica, I'm sorry your sister is doing so poorly. I hope hospice is able to keep any pain she is having well controlled. I know this is a very difficult time for the entire family. ((hugs))

Becky, don't you wish there was a magic sensor they could just place on the body to figure out what exactly is going on and what to do about it? I hope you are feeling better or can figure out the cause of your issues soon.

Shari, I'm glad you are feeling better and have a week free of appointments. It's like a little vacation!

My stamina and strength seem to be gradually coming back a little every day beginning with last Friday. I have no idea what was going on for the past month and a half, but the fatigue had been horrible. Now, it seems to be gradually lifting. I was fairly active for most of each day over the weekend last weekend and I was able to go to an easy aerobics class yesterday. I think it was the first time in several weeks for me to be able to do that. Today, I plan on going to a beginning line dancing class and just doing light housework. I hope I haven't forgotten all the steps to the line dances. I'm looking forward to be able to go back to that class.

Wishing everyone a good day.



Kay from Tennessee



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8/19/14 7:53 A

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Good morning!

My appt. was so, so. The questions I had ended up being the only thing we discussed. Nothing to do with cancer. I'm a little frustrated cuz a couple of things that we discussed. Anyway, I had blood work done and when I went to check online my results, it looks like everything is normal so now it's up to me to figure out what my problem is. I'm suppose to go back in a month to see him. Hopefully things will be better by then.

We had storms last night. Lots and lots of lightning and rain. It's a little cooler this morning. Today I've got cleaning to do and I'm going to cook a meat and potato meal for my family. It's been a long time since we've had anything like that around here.

Have a great day!

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8/18/14 5:42 P

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I very much appreciate all the advice. Unfortunately she is going downhill fast. I had planned to take my mom down to visit her. My mom is 84. My brother and sister advised not as my sister is doing very poorly. I am instead going to visit with my mom. It is during these times you wish you lived all in the same state. My sister is 10 hours away and my mom is 3. It would be great to be able to just pop by, relieve the family from some of the care.

I wish for this group much peace and good health.

Patricia

Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass, it's about learning to dance in the rain!!
- Vivian Greene

Rhode Island
Eastern Standard Time






 
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8/18/14 3:54 P

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Becky, I hope your appointment goes well. I'm sure it is very helpful that he does internal medicine also.

It will be an easier week for me too this week; no medical appointments this week! Makes it easier to plan out my week when I don't have to work around appointments.

We are suppose to be getting some thunderstorms tomorrow, but I am hoping they will hold off until the afternoon because I was thinking of doing my grocery shopping tomorrow morning.


My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, and living with Stage IV breast cancer since 2007.

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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8/18/14 7:49 A

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Good Morning!

Oncologist appt. this morning. He is also an Internal Medicine Dr. so I've got alot of questions and concerns for him.

It was a pretty nice weekend except for the humidity and the pain in my right shoulder blade. Not sure if I slept wrong or did something else to aggravate it.

It's going to be an easier week for work this week which should allow me time to get things done around here. Plus I need to cook. My poor family hasn't had a decent meal in awhile. I can live on rabbit food, but they can't. They've been turning to fast food too much lately.

We're expecting thunderstorms sometime today. We really need the rain. Everything is so dry and I don't want to make up the lost moisture with snow this winter!

Have a nice Monday!

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8/17/14 3:54 P

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My energy levels are up too, because of the transfusion. I was amazed at all I got accomplished this weekend, I wouldn't have been able to do all that within 2 days last weekend.


My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, and living with Stage IV breast cancer since 2007.

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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8/17/14 11:49 A

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Jen, good to hear from you as always.

Becky, hope your appointment goes well. Is it with one of your cancer docs?

My energy levels are gradually coming up. Yesterday, we went shopping for furniture and it took all day. We found some stuff we really liked and bought it! It will be a while before it actually arrives because it has to be made. What I like most about the whole experience is that I was willing to think that I might actually live a good while longer and get to enjoy the furniture. This time last year, I had a hard time thinking more than a week in advance about things....I was so convinced that I was a goner. My survival chances really haven't changed, and I'm still pretty high risk, but at least I'm now entertaining the possibility that I might actually make it through. Keeping my fingers crossed!

Kay from Tennessee



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8/17/14 8:44 A

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Hi, Becky! Didn't give you a shout-out in my last, so I'm wishing you a wonderful Sunday, too, and a less hectic week....

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8/17/14 8:42 A

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Good Morning!

It's been a busy few days. After today, it will be a little quieter. Tomorrow is my Dr. appt. and a picnic later in the afternoon..

Have a nice Sunday!

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8/17/14 8:38 A

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Shari--I'm happy for your transfusion and hope, as in the past, it picked you up a bit almost immediately.

Kay--I'm hoping you're getting to doing better, too....

Inga--please never apologize; we all drop off when the going gets rough, and we all understand and still love and appreciate each other.

Kim--I am very sorry to hear about your sister, and I'm on the bandwagon with Kay.... (I shared that very HuffPost article on Facebook not too long ago because it was such a very, very good list of ideas. YOU SCORE OUT OF THE PARK just for being there--and the PJs. My 'sister' (dear friend diagnosed about 2 months after me) sent me a lovely robe, a soft blanket, a pillow embroidered with "She believed she could.... So she did." A card here and there.... always a little reminder that she was with me and believes in me (we're not "pop-over" distance from one another either, so we mail lots of little presents to one another). I think you're doing fine... I am so very sorry for the emotional struggle you must be going through. Sending you strength, comfort and peace...

Jen

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8/16/14 9:45 P

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Texting is a great idea if it's hard for her to talk and so are the PJ's. Honestly, just keep letting her know that you love her and are thinking of her. That''s what I would want most.

Kay from Tennessee



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Kin - I am so sorry to hear about your sister. I know that when I was going through treatment and after my surgeries it brightened my day when family in other states sent me flowers. I love nature and of course I couldn't get out so seeing the flowers were very helpful for me. Prayers to both you and your sister. emoticon emoticon

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8/16/14 4:14 P

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I'm sure she will love the pajamas! emoticon


My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, and living with Stage IV breast cancer since 2007.

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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8/16/14 12:44 P

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I so much appreciate your advice. I am feeling guilty about going about my routines knowing she is suffering. Cards I can do. I have been texting her. I know that she has sores in her mouth so talking is difficult for her. I sent her some pjs as she likes the ones that are loose and are shorts.

Any other suggestions for things that are useful would be appreciate it. i love her so much.

Patricia

Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass, it's about learning to dance in the rain!!
- Vivian Greene

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8/15/14 5:04 P

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Patricia, I am so sorry! I've never been under hospice care, but I have been housebound at times because of my health issues. Even though I wasn't always up to visitors, I still enjoyed getting phone calls, and I really did appreciate getting cards in the mail. Just knowing that people were thinking of me helped. You could also ask if there is anything she needs, if she is a reader, she might enjoy a new book for example.


My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, and living with Stage IV breast cancer since 2007.

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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8/15/14 2:53 P

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Kin, I'm so sorry to hear about your sister. Here is a great article packed with ideas of ways to support a cancer patient. Since you are so far away, you won't be able to do many of them, but they are all good ideas. I moved to a different state about a month before being diagnosed so a lot of my support came from friends and family that lived far away. I would say two things that helped me a lot were simple telephone calls where the person said "I just wanted to let you know I'm thinking of you" and cards in the mail. I think one thing that didn't particularly help was when a person who hadn't been through what I was going through tried to tell me they could relate and then proceed to tell me about some sort of minor issue. For someone under hospice care....pretty much everything else qualifies as a "minor issue."

Here's the article
www.huffingtonpost.com/elana-miller-
md
/living-with-cancer_b_5660514.html


Kay from Tennessee



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My sister is not doing well. Right now she has chosen hospice which I know is her decision but I am so sad. She is 10 hours away so not a pop over distance I don't want to intrude on the family. They asked my other sister down which is good and my brother is an hour away. If anyone has advice I would appreciate it.

Patricia

Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass, it's about learning to dance in the rain!!
- Vivian Greene

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8/14/14 4:48 P

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Inga, I really appreciate what you do for this team! And I totally understand if you can't be here every day. I'm a team leader of a book team and I know when you aren't feeling good, it's not always easy to keep up.

Kay, I hope the walk helps to perk you up.

I got a phone call from my MO nurse this afternoon; she arranged for me to get a blood transfusion tomorrow! I guess in certain cases, you don't have to wait til it gets down to 8. This is good news, because in the past, I have started feeling better as soon as the day after a transfusion.


My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, and living with Stage IV breast cancer since 2007.

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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8/14/14 3:47 P

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Welcome back Pink!

Shari, I agree about the likely source of the hemaglobin drop and I hope it's resolved before your GI visit. The good news is that an upper GI scope doesn't require much prep so it's so much easier than a lower GI scope.

Yesterday was a good day, but today I'm back to extreme fatigue again. Yuck! I still hope to go for a 10 minute walk this afternoon after the sun goes down a little lower.

Kay from Tennessee



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8/14/14 11:00 A

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emoticon Trying to get my involvement back to SP and our team today. emoticon emoticon

My dear son went back to school today, good luck steven.


I think I may need help for this team, the other leaders are not active and I don't know if I keep this up right.

Personal issues ands health issues have kept me way, also my neuropathy is so bad, 5 years 8 months , dealing with it, I truly have a hard time typing.

I did not take a vacation this year, but drove up 2x to MN, my son attended a Swedish language camp at Concordia Language Villages in Bemidji MN, what a wonderful 2 week experience for him. emoticon emoticon emoticon

I need help to get back on track, I stopped my indoor exercise about 2 months or so emoticon WHY, I have a lot of issues that are hard to deal with, especially depression and a very unsupportive spouse, I may write some blogs and have seen a counselor, it's not nice how he treats me, for many years now. Due to having breast cancer 3x I am not in the position to get a divorce yet, but am seriously looking into it, bottom line, it is so sad to say, but I have to get better. He verbally abuses me and has for years. Trying to move forward today. he is gone very long days and did not barely support me in my over 2600 miles driving our son back and forth.

I have been the leader here for a long time, I want to support you ladies on your weight loss journey and during your bc journey as well

Peace and Love to all of you. emoticon emoticon

Inga
Co-Leader of Breast Cancer Survivor's & Those Who Care. Days Go By...So Live Your Life.

Motivational Quote:
"You have within you a supply of energy limited only by your ability to discover and develop it. In body, mind and spirit, you are endowed with capabilities far greater than you know, keep reaching for your potential. "




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8/14/14 7:57 A

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Good Morning!

It's been a busy week so far and it's going to continue to be busy. That's ok. I'm feeling pretty good. We've been having a bit of Fall like weather this week and although I like the temps. I really want summer to hang on for now. it's predicted that we will have another cold winter so bring on the heat!

Have a wonderful day everyone!

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8/13/14 5:22 P

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Jen, I'm glad you put in a call to the MO nurse; hopefully, she'll tell you it's ok and that will at least give you peace of mind.

Kay, I think the drop in the hemoglobin is most likely an Afinitor side effect. In the past, my oncologist would have ordered a transfusion for it being that low, but since our hospital merged with a bigger system, the hospital has changed their criteria for blood transfusions; they won't do them now until the hemoglobin is at 8 or below.

I see my GI doctor again in October; I am hoping my hemoglobin goes up before then, because if not, it's likely he'll want to do another scope. I've already had 2 this year and I think that is enough. I really haven't had any unusual digestive symptoms, and it seems like if my ulcer was bleeding that much to cause such a drop in that short time, that I would really be feeling some stomach problems.


My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, and living with Stage IV breast cancer since 2007.

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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8/13/14 12:03 P

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Kay... thank you, too, for the calming words--wow! You've dropped quite a bit! I'm doing much of the same--cut out the processed stuff and sugars unless they're naturally-occurring. My diet may be the culprit--golly, I've been through a wringer this year, it's just darned hard to know. I'm going to calm down about it. (But I do have a call into my MO nurse practitioner just so she can calm me down, too. Oh, and I hit my friends up on MyBCTeam, too. LOL.)

When I was in fighting shape, I was still 10 pounds lighter than this, so I'm not super worried--maybe just normalizing after all the crazy meds and surgery stuff. We'll see, I suppose. I'm logging religiously, too. :-) I have a Fitbit--which links to Spark--and it tracks my activity level and basal metabolism into account when it gives me a calorie goal per day to lose x pounds a week. I have it set for 2 pounds a week, not every other day. :-)

I'm sure it will settle down here soon. Thank you for the calming reassurances... I hope you're well, too, and that you hold onto what you got--108. Wow. You may just need a sammich (that's what I tell my skinny girlfriends. ;-)

Love ya!
Jen

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8/13/14 11:54 A

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Good morning all.
Jen, it seems like after being diagnosed with cancer, every new symptom causes our brains to go to the "what if cancer is causing it." That is a lot of weight to lose so quickly, but I think moving is a HUGE calorie burner. Hopefully, it is something as simple as that. The nice thing about this group and other breast cancer support groups is that it can be a great resource for both learning from each other's experiences and calming fears. Wishing you the best.

My weight has dropped pretty steadily ever since being diagnosed. I've gone from 145 to 108 (I'm 5'3"). Some people gain and some people lose weight while in treatment. I think my weight loss has been more due to my complete change in diet to whole unprocessed food rather than anything else. However, I really don't want to lose any more weight at this point. I talked about it with the functional medicine doctor yesterday. She is okay with my current weight and also thinks it's due to my very healthy way of eating so that was encouraging. Still, it's something I want to keep an eye on and make sure I get enough calories in.

For years on Sparkpeople, I was here as part of an effort to lose weight. Now, I find it's very ironic that I'm in a position where I need to make sure I hang onto what I have and not go lower. I'm hoping that my body will stabilize.

I'm also hoping that between the GI doc and the functional medicine PCP, we can figure out all the things that have contributed to my digestive issues. I believe we can. I'm tracking all my food again on Sparkpeople for this reason and keeping a diary in the notes section of the food tracking stage of how I'm physically feeling and reacting to the food I'm eating. My husband has also been real good at helping me spot potential causes for what is making me feel so fatigued lately. It's become almost like a puzzle where I'm trying to figure out what causes what.

Kay from Tennessee



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8/13/14 8:01 A

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Hiya, Becky!! THANK YOU SO MUCH!! I sure hope you're well, and I really appreciate the advice. You've calmed me down--it is such a funny thing to feel so conflicted about something I've been working really hard on (losing weight) once it starts happening.

I think I just have a case of the post-cancer PTSD. :-)

I really thank you for you take on this....

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8/13/14 7:57 A

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Before Cancer, but after my episodes with the infections and multiple surgeries, I would lose 7-10 every 2 weeks. This went on up until last summer. I just felt that everything I went thru threw my system off. (in a good way of course) Since I've been on the Tamoxifen now, I've gained 10 lbs and can't take it off for the life of me. I wouldn't worry too much unless it continues. Then a call to your Dr. would probably be a good idea. You may just be doing much more than you really realize.


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8/13/14 7:34 A

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Hi again, all! Shari and Kay, thanks for the kind words on my pretty hair.... I know it will come back. It's so SLOW, though....

Have a question for everyone: over the past 7 days, I've dropped 7-10 pounds. Now, I've been working hard to eat clean and get my 10,000 steps in a day--and have done some work with the move and all--but I have NEVER been one to drop weight this fast (and I've been hanging at 150 since last October, between 150 and 158 through chemo, and back to about 150 post-surgery). My normal weight, before the tumor got really big probably last October and I jumped up 5 pounds overnight was always about 142.

I'm back there now. And I'm not sure whether to be ecstatic or worried about the weight loss... Do y'all think it's related to being off steroids and hormone suppressors?

Would appreciate hearing your experiences and advice... Thank you so much.

And love to you all.
And have fun camping out, Kay!!!
And feel better, Shari--and if you're exhausted, rest. (And like Kay said--ulcer acting up again maybe?)

Jen

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8/12/14 5:40 P

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Jen, great to hear from you! I'm glad you made it through the move. I'm guessing those white carpets won't last too long with kids and pets, but they are pretty while they last. I had very light off white carpets in part of my old condo and even without kids and pets, they start to show wear. Our house STINKS right now with the refinishing fumes. I've been outside ever since they started on that part of the job today. We set up our tent tonight on the back porch for sleeping. It will be nice when it's all done. All the carpet will be gone except for in a small guest bedroom upstairs and a larger bedroom in the basement. We plan to get rid of the carpet in the downstairs basement later this year. One project at a time!

Shari, no wonder why you are fatigued! I can't imagine having a hemoglobin of 8....I'm tired enough as it is. Do you normally get a transfusion when it gets that low? I hope your ulcer is not bleeding again too.

I saw the new functional medicine doctor this morning. She seems nice and took my history and ordered several blood tests. After the results come back from that, we will meet again and come up with a plan. I hope she can help.

Wishing everyone a great day.
Kay

Kay from Tennessee



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8/12/14 4:35 P

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Jen, are beautiful! You will have a headful of hair again before you know it!
Congrats on the pounds lost! I'm always about 5 pounds more on the doctor's scale than my scale at home, but when I weight myself at home, I don't have my shoes or my prothesises in either.

Rae, I hope you start feeling better soon.

Kay, sometimes I wish I could get all the doctors that treat me in one room and once and for all figure out the best way to treat all of my problems. My internist does a pretty job though of watching over everything, and he knows my MO pretty well.

I had lab work done today again. I know one reason why I have been more fatigued lately; my hemoglobin is down to 8.5; that's low enough to cause me to really drag my butt. I think it's from the Afinitor; one of the possible side effects listed is lower blood counts.


My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, and living with Stage IV breast cancer since 2007.

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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8/12/14 10:33 A

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Updated my profile picture to show my 10 wks-post chemo frosted-tip buzz cut... I mean buzz grow... :-) Love to you all!!

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8/11/14 8:53 P

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PS: I got myself down to 145 the day before yesterday and weighed in at MO at 147 today....

I haven't seen anything less than 150 since my tumor got huge round about last October....

I'm not there yet, but I'm pleased. :-) (Course, I haven't had any hormone suppressor for a couple months and won't start on my Tamoxifen until I'm done with Herceptin and radiation... so..... maybe that's helping a little too. OH. And no steroids anymore?

I actually started tracking my food again even! LOL. It must be getting close to time for me to go back to work (Aug 25th return date, full time). I am conflictedly miserable and excited about it. This little sabbatical of mine was MUCH needed, and even more enjoyed--except the chemo and the surgery and the.... well, you know. :-) :-) A hidden blessing in every trial, I think. I'm a better person for this, have embraced that cancer is part of me--regardless of how many surgeries, chemo, clean scans, clear path reports--it never leaves you. And I'm a better person for it and wouldn't change a thing....

Love and happiness again to everyone... I am wicked busy, but you're always on my mind.
Jen

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8/11/14 8:44 P

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Kay--happy to hear about potential awesome team member... I hope your appointment goes well. I am also excited for your FLOORS!! We bought this joint, and the entire place is white carpet and linoleum. :-) GORGEOUS and huge and awesome 5 acres of mostly woods.... no traffic noise and secluded, but.... we have pets and kids--and just eradicated a flea infestation at my rental--by moving out and taking out the floors and bombing it 6 times. LOL. oops. Those little buggers are tough to lose. Doesn't seem as though we brought them with us, though...

Rae, I'm workin it too. Trying so hard to be active--and it's so hard to be active when i'm so busy being a patient (again... sigh... that break between chemo and surgery was delicious, and the break after surgery was, too.. but my 6 weeks are up, the party is over, and I had my first radiation and first of 12 more Herceptin treatments today, too.) Did take my dog on a nice 2.5 mile walk around (and feeling thankful to be able to pull that off) the new neighborhood--my fuzzy babies are still stressed from the move, but she's got Jack in her and though she was never properly leash trained, she is catching on quickly. Believe I'll make it a consistent practice. Daily. We have to get help when we need it, or we're only prolonging our healing... I do it all the time. :-( I hope you get to feeling better.

Shari--I'm so glad you're getting a break--and happy you got out to church. The movement and fellowship are good things for the soul.... Hope you didn't overdo (I've been doing that all the time--but it's standard practice for me, I'm so stubborn... one good day, and I pay for that wonderwoman day with a couple rough ones every time.)

Becky--that job sounds so wonderful--and totally NON RETAIL! I am hoping for the best for you with that....

And that is about all here--I think of you all daily--didn't scroll back far enough to see if we've heard from moon lately or if she's still doing "grands" laundry.... But moon, I hope you're doing well!!

Love to you all, my warrior sisters,
Jen

Edited by: JEN040219 at: 8/11/2014 (20:47)
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8/11/14 4:27 P

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Rae, I hope you are okay. It sounds like you are feeling pretty low.

I made an appointment with a new doctor for tomorrow that I may start using as my PCP. She is a integrative functional medicine doctor that is actually covered by my insurance. I feel like I have so many problems in so many different areas that I want someone who really looks at my body as a whole and is more in tune with nutrition as a major health component. I hope I like her. I've been feeling extremely fatigued. It's about as bad as when I was on chemo so I'd like to get some overall help and not just another prescription. I like specialists for my specialized problems, but I also really feel the need for a good generalist these days. This doctor has gotten excellent reviews.

Kay from Tennessee



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8/11/14 3:56 P

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I am hoping that I will be able to work with chair exercises. I need to keep some physical activity going. My eating is less cause when I crave something I need to ask someone to get it and my daughter usually tells me I don't need it. Lol. Life will get better. Lots of upcoming doctor appointments and test but that will slow down too.

My name is Rae and I live in S Florida. I have been a member with SparkPeople since 2008. I am a Breast Cancer Survivor. I have been cancer free since December 2012.




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8/11/14 3:38 P

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I'm hoping now that my schedule of medical appointments has slowed down, life will get a little more back to "normal".


My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, and living with Stage IV breast cancer since 2007.

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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8/11/14 9:46 A

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Shari, I'm really glad you were able to get to church. I liked what you said about recognizing that although you were tired afterward, you weren't any more tired than if you had stayed at home. I'm still dealing with significant fatigue so it's a good reminder to go ahead and do things even if I'm feeling tired. I know it must have been wonderful for you to be out and about doing something other than grocery shopping or going to the doctor. It's nice to be out in the world just doing things "normal" people are doing, like going to church.

Becky, that job sounds potentially really nice! Let us know what happens.

It's Monday morning before the workers have arrived to do the floor. The upstairs looks very empty without all the furniture. I feel so grateful we are able to get the hardwood flooring done. So far, the workers have done a really nice job.

Kay from Tennessee



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8/11/14 7:40 A

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It was a busy weekend! This week is going to be a busy week also. I've got a job interview today at a Chiropractic off ice. Not exactly sure what the job is. The description was pretty vague. Plus it's my DS's birthday. Tomorrow that same son has to have his wisdom teeth removed so mom gets to take care of him.

Have a nice Monday!

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8/10/14 1:44 P

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Kay, I wish I had had hardwood floors! I'm glad you are getting them in while you can spend some time outdoors because of the fumes, and I'm glad you don't have to deal with a mess from the sawdust either.

After missing it all summer, I finally made it to church this morning! I felt a bit winded after rushing around getting ready to go, but I still had time to sit and rest a bit before my ride got here. Anyway, I really enjoyed it and seeing all the people. Tired this afternoon, but not anymore tired than I would have been had I just stayed home.



My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, and living with Stage IV breast cancer since 2007.

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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8/9/14 7:51 P

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Good to hear from you Jen. You have SO MUCH going on. Wish you the best with your move!

We are in the midst of having hardwood floors put down in the master bedroom, hall and livingroom. It will all connect up with the old hardwood flooring in the diningroom, den and kitchen. The new unfinished flooring is down. Next week, they will resand the old floors and then finish it all to match. Thank goodness, we have a nice lower level that we can hang out in while this is going on. The weather is so good that I can spend a lot of time out on the back porch too, so I won't have to smell the fumes so much. We had our hardwood floors refinished up in Illinois about six months before we put our condo on the market. Even in the wintertime, when they did it, it wasn't too bad. They have come a long way with hardwood sanding and finishing technology. The sawdust is vacuumed directly out to the truck, so there is very little dust and the stuff they use to finish floors with these days dries very quickly. It's kind of amazing how fast they can do it.

Kay from Tennessee



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8/8/14 3:38 P

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Miss you too Jen! I hope the rest of your move goes smoothly.
I too, hope never to have to move again. I have a few boxes out in my shed I put in there to "deal with later" the last time I moved; that was 14 years ago, lol.


My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, and living with Stage IV breast cancer since 2007.

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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8/8/14 8:02 A

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Happy Friday!

I'm glad to hear that everyone seems to be doing well.

Jen-I will never move all of my stuff again! I will pack up only what I want to take and then everything else will be sold, donated or tossed. No bringing unwanted stuff again. We have so much stuff to go thru and we've been in our house for 10 yrs. now.

Have a great day everyone! I will be going out for a run and then lunch with DH and then work today.

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8/7/14 6:31 P

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OH I MISS YOU GUYS!!!!!

And hand to God, if I ever have to move again, I'm burning everything I own first. :-)

(Kidding--lots of donations this time around, and will have a bit of a furniture sale in my basement once we get more settled.... CRAZY BUSY WEEKEND!!!)

I start Herceptin (7.5 months of it) and rads (5.5 weeks of it) Monday! :-) I am quite excited. All fills are done--the last one was surprisingly awful--they overfilled the side that gets radiated (since the skin will shrink there) but another 100ccs after a 100cc fill the week before had that "foob" SCREAMING for a couple days. All better now!!

Kay--YAY ON ALL YOUR GOOD NEWS!!!
Shari--YAY ON NO APPOINTMENTS!!!!
Becky--YAY ON YOUR BROTHER BEING CLOSE TO HOME AND OUT OF THE HOSPITAL!!
Moon--YAY ON TOWELS TO PUT AWAY!!!!

(I'm kidding--you had some nice news in there and for the life of me, after catching up on everyone, I've lost track of what it was--but I am happy for you!!!)

Miss you all madly. Still in the throes of the move. Unpacking and getting the old residence rehabbed to become a nice rental. Dealing with contractors is so much fun. :-)

Be well and happy friends--will pop in again as I get more settled.

Love,
Jen

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8/7/14 12:18 P

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Kay, I'm happy for your good news!
Moon, I'm glad your appointment went well.

Nothing special going on for me tomorrow except for waiting on UPS to bring me my Afinitor refill. It's one I have to sign for. Of course, if I get a cute UPS man bringing it, that will be the highlight of my day, lol.

I'm doing my Sparking a little early today; later this afternoon my cat son Timmy goes to the vet for his annual shots and a check up.


My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, and living with Stage IV breast cancer since 2007.

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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8/6/14 11:26 P

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Everything and everybody sounds good tonight, and I'm glad. I had my oncology appt today and all went well. He did a good check up. I will get a chest x-ray in 6 months and see him again then.

Things are getting back to normal here with the kids and grands gone. I have a mountain of towels and sheets to put where they belong, and the roundup of things that were left behind has started. So far it's undies and a ball cap. We'll see what else turns up eventually. I have books to take back to the library, and errands to run with bills to pay tomorrow. I hope everyone has an uneventful day tomorrow unless of course one wants an event of note to happen!

WooHoo Kay and Shari!

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8/6/14 3:46 P

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The upper endoscopy went well yesterday. I don't remember a thing after they put the bite guard in and didn't have any soreness afterward. Everything looks ok. The doc took some biopsies to help her figure out if I am gluten intolerant and I'll know the results from that in a few days. I will be surprised if she tell me I am gluten intolerant.

Today, I got a call from the breast center. The biopsy I had last week of the lump everyone thought was fat necrosis IS FAT NECROSIS!!!! I wasn't too worried, but I sure was happy to get it confirmed through the biopsy that it wasn't cancer. They will do another mammo again in six months on the spot. I guess they keep want to keep an eye on it which is fine with me.

My GI issues are getting better since the GI doc put me on some new medication last week. I'm sleeping better at night because I don't have to get up (as often) to use the restroom and I'm feeling better throughout the day. Apparently, I had an area in my lower GI tract that was actively inflammed. Now that that has calmed down, I'm not walking around in low-level pain all the time. I think it had been going on for so long that I didn't realize it. The medication is not a steroid and it is in enema form, so it is helping without any noticable undesirable side effects. I'm glad I finally decided to go see a GI doc after 32 years of not wanting to see one since my original colon removal surgery. It was about time.
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Kay from Tennessee



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8/6/14 3:46 P

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It's nice not having any medical appointments this week! Ever since about the last week of May, I've had at least one per week. Glad things seem to be getting back to normal again.


My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, and living with Stage IV breast cancer since 2007.

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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8/6/14 7:47 A

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Another really foggy morning. Lots to do today!

Have a nice Wed.!

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8/5/14 3:37 P

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Kay, I've had several endoscopies done, and I've always been told there is a chance of a sore throat, but I've never had a sore throat after any of mine. With the sedatives, I don't remember any of the procedure once they ask me to bite down on the mouth guard; I've never remembered the part about the scope going in. I usually sleep for 3-4 hours after I get home from having one because of the sedatives. The doctor can take pictures with the scope too, and I've usually been sent home with a couple of pictures from mine.


My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, and living with Stage IV breast cancer since 2007.

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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8/5/14 7:37 A

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Kay-if the test you're having is the same as an Endoscopy, it's a breeze. I didn't have any issues afterwards. It goes really fast.

Long, boring day at work yesterday. Very slow. We had downpours off and on all afternoon. We needed the rain.

It's very foggy this morning and boy can you notice that the days are getting shorter. I'm not ready for those days. All of the back to school sales have begun and before you know it, the Fall and Halloween stuff will be out.

i'm planning on getting out for a run this morning. I work later this afternoon. Don't mind this shift but it messes up my meals.

Have a great day!

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8/4/14 4:10 P

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Shari, that is so nice you can pick up your reports on line. Vanderbilt has that capability in their system, but they don't use it. They use it for blood tests, but not anything else. I wish they did. I did well over the weekend not thinking about the biopsy, but now that's it's Monday afternoon, I'm starting to think about it much more. They said I might get the results today. I had in my head that they wouldn't be available until tomorrow until they told me that. If I don't hear back by Wednesday, I'm calling.

Tomorrow, I'll be getting the scope done of my upper GI. It is SO NICE to be able to eat today and not have to do any prep other than don't eat or drink after midnight. I've never had this done before so I'm wondering how sore my throat will feel afterward. I'm also glad I'll be so sedated that I won't remember a thing. When I was in nursing school, I watched this procedure being done on a patient. It looks horrible, but I know the patient didn't remember it afterward. Thank goodness, it will be the same for me.

Becky, I had no idea you had such a big garden. Hooray for you! That's great. I have the room, but just haven't had the energy to do anything like that this summer. The farmer's markets in our little town are wonderful, so I'm not sure that I ever will. We enjoy supporting the local farmers. The one thing that I wish that I had grown this summer were some tomato plants. I love a true vine-ripened tomato.

Kay from Tennessee



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8/4/14 3:58 P

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I had my monthly lunch out today with some of the ladies I use to work with. There were only 5 of us today, but it was nice. We usually don't have as many show up during the summer months because of people going on vacations, or having their children and/or grandchildren visiting.

I don't do any canning, but I am going to try a recipe I found online this week for zucchini pickles; they are made like refrigerator pickles.


My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, and living with Stage IV breast cancer since 2007.

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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8/4/14 7:37 A

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Kay-my brother is going to be 60. Way too young to be going thru all of this.

I never got too nervous about phone calls until after the call telling me I had BC. Everyone up till then was pretty sure it wasn't anything. Now I know to be cautious.

We got some much needed rain yesterday afternoon but we still need more and hopefully we'll see some of that today. I work all day so it doesn't matter to me. It's really humid and I'd like to see that go away.

Canned a few more qts. of pickles this weekend. DH picked a bunch of beans too. I just may have to blanch them and freeze them. They never seem to turn out for me, but I hate to waste them. We've already gave a bunch away.

Have a nice Monday!

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8/2/14 4:29 P

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Becky, I'm glad your brother is closer to home now, I will send up some more prayers for his recovery and that he grows stronger.

Kay, I'm glad things went smoothly for you. Praying you have good news with the biopsy!
I get nervous waiting for phone calls like that too.

At least with my recent MRI, I can get my results online; it's something that our local hospital just started to make available. I checked today and my MRI wasn't on there yet, but I imagine it's probably something that might take about 24 hours to be available online, and I just had it done Friday, and since today and tomorrow are not considered business days, I don't expect to be able to view my results until Monday. I'm really glad that our hospital is doing this though; it sure makes it easier for me since I'm not able to drive right now, and I don't have to worry about arranging a ride just to pick up a report at the hospital.


My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, and living with Stage IV breast cancer since 2007.

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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