Friday, November 14, 2014

Cancer Sucks...

Everyone knows this.  But not everyone knows what it's like to live with it.  You try to base decisions for your future thinking everything will be okay.  Really, whether you admit it or not, in the back of your mind, you don't know how far to plan.  Do you plan for 10 years, 5 years, 1 year, 1 month?  Of course this should be how everyone thinks, but we all know it's not.  Until you're faced with something that wants to kill you every day, do you really have any idea what it feels like?  And is every little ache and pain more cancer?  This is how I think now.  This is how I will think forever.

I know the statistics are ever changing, and to not look at them.  It's hard not too.  Stage 4 cancer is stage 4 cancer, and your odds aren't great.  Lung is the largest killer, but I'm not going to harp on that, even though it's Lung Cancer Awareness Month and this cancer is grossly underfunded.

Instead, I'm trying to figure out how far I want to try and plan my future.  I'm so sick and tired of the wait game of "every 3 months to see if it's still stable or spread".  Of course everyone says, "live in the moment" which I do for the most part, but living in the moment doesn't get you far if you're going to be around for a while.  But am I?  I've always been a planner, and the past two years have been a nightmare that I know is never going to end.

And to be quite honest, I'm scared.  After my last incident in October, I realized that I don't have much family here (blood related that is).  I am not sure all of the choices I've made and I'm going to make are the right ones for Karley and me.  I can only trust in God to give me peace with my decisions.  Miss Independent is forever gone and I don't recognize this person that's replaced her.  I'm not sure I even like her that much because she doesn't just depend on God, she's become too dependent on other people.  That has never been me.  It's getting to me lately, a lot.  I no longer feel like I have my own life.  I don't know how to put into words how much this disease has changed me, some ways it has been a good change and some ways bad.

Money is always tight and I'm tired of fighting insurance companies.  Oh, and I got my new estimated premium for mine and Karley's insurance, which quadrupled.  I can't even afford all of my bills now!  How am I ever going to afford this too?

Thank you all for your continuous prayers and listening to my petty ranting and pity party I'm throwing over here.   I haven't posted as much as I should for Lung Cancer Awareness Month because I have been in a funk.  All of these little galas take place on the West Coast and North East and survivors get to meet and have so much fun, but if you live far away, you don't hear about them or they don't exist.  Plus, I'm struggling to pay for everyday necessities.  I only wish I had the financial ability to do things like this.  So, it's disheartening.  I'll be better next blog, so please don't think I'm all depressed.  I mean, I have drugs for that people!

If you really want to give to lung cancer, go to your local cancer research institute and ask them how to donate to lung cancer.   That way you know it's going to research instead of a non-profit CEO's bank account.

Finally, please pray for Tina Roberts and family.  John Roberts recently passed away.  He was one of the first people to talk to me about this terrible new normal and lead me to different social media outlets to meet others.  RIP John, our "good morning man".  Also, please pray for my friend Amanda and her family.  She's lost someone very close to her and is continuing to struggle to help another (due to a car accident).  And pray for Molly Golbon, she is my carbon copy warrior on the West Coast.  Her husband Arash keeps me informed on her condition.

And one last thing, before writing this blog, I saw that Diem Brown passed away at 34 to cancer.  For those of you who don't know this person, she was a reality TV star on MTV's the Challenge.  She began fighting cancer at 23.  It came back for a 3rd time in her stomach and colon and finally took her too soon this morning.  I watched her on these challenges, each time thinking how amazing she was for overcoming the cancer every time it came back.  Maybe that's why I'm a little sad and scared today.  She was the picture of health and cancer took her at 34.

Cancer will always be with me.  It sucks.  I hate it so much for those who have lost loved ones and those that continue to fight.

The verse I leave you with is one for those, like me, who are somewhat lost in this world.  Not knowing what to do.  I have to remind myself of this quite often.  Today is one of those days.  I also threw in some photos.  The first being our annual Thanksgiving Feast at Karley's school, the next two are from the fair last week, and the last is just one I came across online that everyone should see.  Until next time, God bless you all, and thank you for your prayers.

Proverbs 3:5-6
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.  In all your ways acknowledge Him, and he will make straight your paths.


  1. So many things you have said here rings true for me, and, since I'm NED and you're Stage IV stable, I expect it is far harder for you. But I'd like to share a few things with you that I learned along the way... hoping you'll see that what you're going through is normal... the "new normal" you've been adjusting to since your diagnosis.

    I remember the first time my husband told me he was going to be traveling after my diagnosis. The formerly independent woman had become so dependent on him, that I had physical anxiety just thinking about his trip. (Even on those great meds!) I hated being so dependent early on... but have learned to embrace it, because it has made us so much closer. Depending on someone else is my new normal.

    When we moved to Hawaii, after a particularly long day of house hunting I was crazy exhausted, barely able to keep my eyes open. It reminded me of my treatment days. I decided that day I didn't want to live more than a 15 minute drive from the hospital, so if I needed treatment, I'd be able to get myself there and back. (No friends/family to help.) When hubby retires from the military we'll need to figure out where we want to live. Gone is the dream of an off-grid house on 40 acres in the southwest. My criteria now includes being close to a major cancer treatment center. How we choose where to live is the new normal.

    Today I made an appointment for my last CT scan before I reach the magical 5-year mark. And I'm full of anxiety. I suppose that will never change. But now I make plans that reach beyond the next scan. I do so as confidently as I can, but sometimes I'm just faking it. Fake it 'til you make it, I was told by a wonderful LC hero. This Excel-wielding-plan-every-detail-down-to-the-minute kind of planner has become a lets-put-it-on-the-calendar-and-see-how-it-goes kind of planner. I miss my spreadsheets, but there is joy in seeing every plan unfold in God's perfect way without my obsessive intervention. New normal.

    I know that nothing I've said will "fix" what you're going through right now, but I'll make sure to keep praying for you, because I know that will help.

    And here's a great big virtual {{hug}}. Much love. -K

    1. Thank you so much for your encouraging words. They literally made me cry. It's nice to know the "new normal" is normal sometimes. I don't have a lot of people that get it other than on social media. I wish I could live near a good cancer institute, but unfortunately my daughter's father and I aren't together anymore and we share custody. So, I stay near him so we can share custody. She's only 9, so I need them to be close for my sanity. Otherwise, I would move closer to some better care.

      I'm so thankful you pointed out everything that you see also and for your insight. Congratulations on your upcoming 5 year mark. I'll be praying for good results for you! Keep me updated. And thank you again for the encouragement. God bless!

  2. Samantha, you are in my prayers. Go with your heart and where God leads you. Tell Amanda in my prayers.

  3. I have days like today, where we play and we dance, and everything is almost the way it used to be, and I have days in bed. I hate bed days, and I hate this thing, as much as I understand death and the struggle to live another day is a normal part of life. I had a good day today, and that must remain the only thing that matters to me.

  4. Everyone here i think would have gotten a piece of their share from cancer, with some being able to survive and others dying even with the high efforts of oncologists. I had lungs cancer due to the fact that i was a hardcore smoker Due to the terrain in Alaska. I started to have symptoms in 2008 and i was diagnosed in April 2009. Several therapies of treatment were prescribed but none seemed to help me. I had just less than a year to live. Less than 6 months to go i read about Doctor Roland who is a herbal doctor that treats cancer. At first i doubted because my case was chronic and even if he could help it was already late. I had nothing to lose so i contacted him and he was very encouraging even in my condition and i placed an order for the herbal medicine which i used for 3 months. Even before i was done using it i felt strong and after it all i went for diagnosis and i tested negative. This is a permanent cure because it's been three years from my supposed death and i am still very strong and alive. Do not give up soon on yourself just reach him on (dr.rolandoscar@gmail.com) i am positive that if i can be cured you too can. I pray for all cancer patients worldwide.