Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Pursuing Life

What on earth is wrong with me?  I've become such a "Sensitive Sally."  I'm nothing like the old Samantha with the thick skin and witty comebacks.  Even in the beginning of this journey I still had it.  Now, I cry at the drop of a dime.

 It's like I expected everything to stop 11/27/12.  But no, my therapist reminded me I am not the center of the universe and the world will continue to turn, even if  I feel so left out of the real world.

I started seeing a therapist this week to deal with some of my personal issues, mainly with grief.  I did learn that grief usually reaches it's plateau at 6 months after the dramatic or tragic event occurred.

It just feels so damn lonely right now.  I really have no idea what to do. My therapist told me to definitely come back to work on some coping skills.  I don't want to up my antidepressants because I already feel I take too much medication anyways.  But maybe that's the only choice I have.  I've lost two great friends here, 2 of my best ones.  One to cancer and the other moved to Atlanta and has decided to just ignore me,  So, in a way, I lost a friend to leukemia but gained a blessing because the other was never really a true friend and I do see that now.  I'm glad I see it before I gave anymore of my time, energy, or help to this person.  It's hard when someone does that to you though.  We would have our little arguments but always forgive each other.  Not anymore.  It's like I never existed.  Of course it bothers me, but what can I do?  Nada

I also learned there is no time limit for grief.  It can come and go.  But that's okay.  So many people make me feel like I shouldn't be sad or try to tell me to get on with my life.  That's what I'm doing, but in my own way.   And it's okay if I'm sad, I have every right to be.  If I walk out the front door and see Roy's old house and break down crying, it's normal and I have every right to get those emotions out.

I just want you all to know the therapist was great.  She said I will probably have bouts of grief for the rest of my life, and that's okay.   Just pull over and cry it out.  And not to let anyone tell me how I should and should not feel.

We don't always get over the loss of that friendship or bond we build with someone.  And that hole in our heart never gets filled.  We just learn to live with it.  Live with the pain and make the most of the time we have here.  Roy's death certainly scared me about my own mortality...how he was walking and talking that morning and gone that evening.  It's a scary thought.  But it can happen to any one of us.   We can't worry about it though.  When death comes knocking and it's your time to go, we really don't have a say do we?  So, why worry?  Well, if I weren't given an original expiration date and read the stats I probably wouldn't.  And I am focusing on leaving it in God's hands.  It's ultimately up to Him anyways.  It's a work in progress here, the worrying....

I've had a great life so far.  I'm married to a wonderful man and have the best daughter and stepdaughter anyone could ask for.  They all cater to me, even if they don't want too.  Ha ha.  I know I get down, but at this very moment, this very second, I'm smiling.   My blog didn't start out this way, but it's ending this way.  Because I know the blessings I have here on earth and the love my true friends and family have for me.  So thank you all for making me smile, when this started out as an otherwise sad post.

I have scans next week.  Please continue to pray the medicine is still working, crazy hair and all.  And please pray for a few more of my friends.  Unspoken at this time but they need it.  My heart is overflowing with joy to know that the people that read this care enough to do so and I have my little part in this world, though it may be little, it's mine.

Finally, I'm participating in the Light the Night Leukemia and Lymphoma walk at Centennial Olympic Park in Atlanta on October 8th in honor of Roy and for Karley's cousin, Dylan Rosier.

My fundraiser page is here Light the Night for Roy.  If you would like to donate, any amount will help save future lives.  If you're my friend in the Atlanta area and want to join, send me or Reggie Kimbell a message.

I find it interesting that in life, Roy wanted to be so independent to the point he was stubborn but always wanted to help others.  Now, I'm trying to carry on for you my friend, and raise funds to help cure a cause that took you from us, because I know how much you hated that disease and didn't wish it on anyone.

I'll be back to Lung Cancer advocating soon, after these scans.  In fact, I'm in the Sept. 26 issue of Woman's World if you happen to see it at the store.  Last page though, better than nothing, and it's about lung cancer.  But cancer is cancer.  It all sucks and I wouldn't wish it on anyone, not even the ex-friend that moved to Atlanta and won't speak to me.  Lol!

 My little world

My baby girl (not so much a baby-she's crazy)

Roy and I at his fundraiser

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Crazy Frozen

Ok, well I really tried to pull myself out of this funk but it may take more than just me.   At least I got out and now have a regular Thursday lunch date.  Thanks Brandy!

In all reality, it feels like I've been frozen in time since 11/27/12.  I see Karley growing up and everything going on around me, but I don't feel like I'm a part of it.  I don't feel like I've aged, although I may look it!  LOL.  I feel stuck.  Hard to explain.  So, of course I'm always sensitive when I feel like I'm missing out on things.

And the grief...just when you think it's gone, it's back.  It won't leave me alone!  I'm going to see a specialist about this.  I don't know whether it was the cancer bond Roy and I had or just Roy being Roy that I miss so terribly.  Maybe both.  It hurts so much.  And just when I think I'm okay, something triggers it all over again and I relive that day in pieces.  Some days I don't get out of bed and feel like I'm slowly falling apart.

I started a journal for more private things going on in my life.  It's helped a lot.  Such a release of emotions and something to leave for Karley, so she knows what was going on in my crazy head.

Please don't worry about me, I am fine, just a little broken.

Thank you all for your continuous prayers, I need them.  Especially that first week in October.  Don't take pity either.  I've been living with this for 4 years almost.  I think the longer we live with it, the harder it gets though.  I think year two was my best.

Well, love you all and thanks for reading me whine once again.  And please pray for a few of my other friends who I'm sure don't want their names mentioned, going through some life changing issues.  Thank you.

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Ignorance is Bliss

Hi all.  It's been a while since my last update.

This is the first time since diagnosis I haven't done the Free to Breathe 5K.  I just have been pushing myself further away from the cancer world.  I'm not meaning too.  Maybe it's part of coping. I'm just so freakin tired of dealing with it.  Living your life not on your own terms is miserable.  I don't have just me.....I have Karley, Brent, Livi, and John to think of and what will become of their futures.   

In a way though, the backing off from the cancer world has been good for me.  I feel more normal (except my hair).  My stomach has been upset for a few days...another wonderful side effect that seems to come and go.

I got my puppy.  We named him Data..pronounced "Da da".  I named him after Roy.  This little puppy has helped me so much not feel so lonely.  Even in a room full of people, you can feel alone.

Living in the cancer world, you lose people, friends you've made.  But not living in it, you feel like no one really gets what you're going through, especially emotionally.  I can put a smile on, no probs.  But underneath it all, unless I'm out doing something crazy or with the family, there usually isn't that smile inside....  It's a catch 22.  What do you do?

Well, I've been pondering that for the past month.  I realized I just needed a  break.  I'm back.  I'm ready to advocate the shit out of lung cancer, all cancers for that matter, but the number one killer is at the top of my priority list.  I'm going to find that face for lung cancer, that star.   And if I don't do it in time, I am sure that my friends and family will continue to advocate.   Stop the stigma of lung cancer.

Look for Karley, Data, and I in the September 26th issue of Woman's World.  I haven't seen it yet but we took tons of pics.  Thank you Lung Force for making that possible and all of these interviews a reality.  And thank you Bonnie J Addario foundation for making me a part of your committee to help advocate.  And Team Draft, Chris Draft, for all you do for patients all over.  And you're crazy cause you're going over the edge of the Buckhead Tower today.  We love your crazy.  And Lungevity, Free to Breathe, and the ALA for all they do.  So many advocates.

Jessica Steinberg, I'm so jealous of you on stage with Bradley Cooper last night on Stand Up 2 Cancer.  If you didn't watch it, I encourage you too.  At least the first part.  I cried my eyes out in memory of the people I've lost and my own trauma.  There is a lot going on in the area of research for lung cancer, which gives me so much hope.

Well, that's all for now.  Scans are the first week in October.  I'm going to give that worry to God and enjoy this time.  Like they say, ignorance is bliss.  And I'm always thankful for the 3 months of bliss I have between scans.  We are doing the annual brain MRI along with the PetScan so prayers would be so much appreciated.  And thank you for continuing to pray, this is never ending, so I may always need them.

Sweet Data

Lucky Jessica