Sunshine Feels Good!

Well you can check #8 and # 14 off the bucket list.

# 8 – go on a vacation with Aaron ✅

#14- go whale watching ✅

That’s right folks, this lady got to enjoy the sunshine in Maui!

We decided fairly last minute that the sun and a holiday away would be beneficial for both of us. It has been a very long time and with things being so rough, we just bit the bullet and did it.

To be away from home and not be in a hospital was a great feeling. I did have many moments that I missed the kids but FaceTime was pretty great for that.

The weather was very nice. Not too hot but enough for Aaron to burn. 24 degrees Celsius was the average. I wore a lot of sunscreen . I have to take care not to get skin cancer. As should everyone.

We went on a couple adventures. Whale watching and snorkeling was the highlight of my trip . I enjoyed it so much . It was always a dream of mine to see whales in the wild and I saw an abundance of them. They were right beside our boat several times. We could watch them from our lanai too. It was amazing.

We also jumped in the water and swam with turtles and fish. It was pretty cool. I had to swim with a belly floaty and a board. With the fatigue it wasn’t worth the risk. I did get tired and so I’m thankful for the care and concern I received from Gemini. They fed us a delicious meal too!

Aside from this we went to a luau. The Drums of the Pacific was the one we chose. Mainly because it was at our resort. Once again amazing food and the entertainment was spot on.

About a 15 minute walk away was Whaler’s village . It was a cute little shopping place with a few restaurants. We ate there a couple different times. Food was always delicious.

On our final full day we rented a car. To our surprise and excitement we were upgraded to a convertible because they were out of the Ford Fusion. It was some sort of Buick. It was fun to drive around Maui with the roof down. We went all over. Visited a few little places Paia, Kihei, Lahaina. My favourite place was hookipa beach. This is where we watched surfers of all sorts and watched a monk seal swim and visit on shore. There were also tons if turtles.

I really could go on and on but I think I will leave it at that. We are both feeling refreshed and a little less stressed out. I came home with new goals to push myself and not hide so much. I came home to a clean house and happy kids. Thank you Mom and everyone else who helped make this trip possible. We feel so thankful that we could get away.

A Lot Ask About Me

I know a lot of people ask Aaron about me. If you read my blog you know things are not great. I’m losing my positive attitude and feeling pretty defeated these days. I don’t know what to think of it all anymore. This isn’t the life I was hoping for. It is the life I’ve been given though and I really do try to make the best of it. I focus on my heavenly Father and find comfort and joy in Jesus. It keeps me going but barely.

Physically I’m dizzy a lot. I have headaches daily, and nausea every morning . Gavin spent a snow day cleaning up puke all day because I physically could not move. 🙁 Weakness seems to never leave me. I just walked around a store for 15 minutes and I am now taking a break lying here blogging because I’m so tired. The grey skies bring me down. The messy unorganized house brings me down. That is usually where my energy goes. I’m trying to make things easier by organizing but it’s taking me a long time. I wanted to ask for help but realistically it’s something I need to do on my own .

Going through chronic fatigue and transplant it’s so difficult to know if it’s a result of treatment or if it’s depression. Are things mentally catching up to me? I don’t know. I’m working through it.

People ask what I’m doing, what I’m up to and I feel guilty answering because it’s usually “nothing”. I want to be able to say I’m doing all these great things but I’m probably lying on my bed doing nothing. People ask how I’m feeling and I feel guilty because I don’t want to say I’m doing bad. Im usually lying . Sorry 😢.

I’m thankful Aaron and I are going to get some downtime soon together and hopefully it’s the therapy I need.

Thank you all from church who reach out and send their love . Aaron always tells me. ❤️

Biopsy Results

As you know from my previous blog post, I have had some worries on my mind. I developed a white sandpaper like area on the roof of my mouth. 2 weeks ago they did a biopsy and took a chunk out of the roof of my mouth . Today I got the results. There is no cancer! I’m very thankful for this wonderful news . The downside is that what was presented was showing signs of something that will have to be closely monitored. The cancer oncology will be my dentist for the future until he feels like I’m in the clear. That gives me peace of mind . Another biopsy will be done down the road as well as x-rays.

I feel like my Heavenly Father has stayed close to me and carried me through these worrisome days. Things have not been easy mentally or physically and I just have to trust that Gods got this and pray for peace and comfort.

I am loving this snowy weather. We went to play in the snow at Aaron’s sisters house and I think the kids might go play some outdoor pond hockey. Enjoy the beautiful whiteness everywhere.

Worry, Fear, Exhaustion but Still Grateful

January is a tough month. I’m not one to dwell on what was and feel sorrow on specific anniversaries but for some reason this year was hard. I think I expected to be all better by now. January 25th marked 2 years that I have been fighting. I fight everyday. Maybe not to kill cancer with chemo but to get through my day. I spend many days in bed. I try to get going but my body doesn’t let me. I force myself out to do things I enjoy that don’t require a lot from me. That’s why you will often see me cheering on some sort of Credo sports team. I find a lot of joy in watching my kids .

There have been some new worries. Although my bloodwork looks fairly descent, there have been some physical ailments that have been on my mind. The pain in my wrists and fingers and hips can be rough at times. I saw a rheumatologist this week and she is suspecting tendinitis. I also saw a dentist at oral oncology yesterday. I have some white patches on the roof of my mouth and we aren’t sure what it is. It’s been there for a while. Yesterday a biopsy was taken and I should find out what it is in 2 weeks. It’s a pretty painful spot for a biopsy. Ouch! In the meantime I have a nasty cold bug. It seems to be in my bronchial tubes and makes it hard to breath at times. I am hoping my body can fight it in its own. I woke up this morning with swelling and pain under my left ear and jaw. Probably a lymph node from whatever virus I’m fighting. If it doesn’t go away tomorrow I will go visit my doctor. My BMT doctor has stopped IVIG treatments for now . It will be nice to have a break from this. It was decided that I will stay on a low dose of prednisone because it seems to give me what I need to handle food and gives me a small amount of relief from gvhd . I am starting a very slow taper of cyclosporine. This is my anti rejection medication. This is a big step! I tried to go off it before but developed gvhd in my stomach and was put back on it. So hopefully this time is a success.

In other news, I still have not booked a holiday for our family but I’m struggling to figure out where to go. I think maybe we will go away with the kids in BC somewhere and Aaron and I will go to Hawaii. Trying to get the whole family away is just not in our budget. Maybe I will take some snowboarding lessons and hit the hills with them . 😆 ( not likely)

I am loving having my puppy Molly around. She is great company for me and brings lots of fun to our home. The kids are busy with sports and school. Aaron is busy with work and being Mom and Dad most of the time. 😢 I had my mom and Grandma take about 15 loads of laundry to clean for me this past weekend. It was wonderful. Today Grandma made me my favourite homemade soup. Yummy!

In other news Relay for life is coming up. I’m excited to participate in it again. If you would like to join my team, I would absolutely love it. We have so much fun every year. I asked the team if we could change our name to Cancer Crushers this year. Tania’s Troopers is great but I know so many people who I have lost this past year, who are fighting still and I want us to be united in support of everyone who is or did go through cancer. Please consider joining. It is a great family event too. Credo kids I would love it if you joined us! You don’t even have to know me. I promise to welcome you with open arms. Here is the link …. you can join my team through here or if you are unable to make it , you can donate. Thanks so much.

http://convio.cancer.ca/site/TR/RelayForLife/RFL_BC_even_?px=7262996&pg=personal&fr_id=24846

40 things By 40

There are so many things I want to do by the time I’m 40. That’s only 3 and a half years away! So here it goes…

1. Fly on an airplane with my kids

2. Watch Gavin and Madison graduate

3. Watch Brandon graduate from grade 7

4. See a meteor shower

5. Be off all transplant related medication

6. Meet my stem cell donor

7. Organize every room in my house 😳

8. Go on a holiday with Aaron

9. Grow my hair to mid back length

10. Be officially cured of cancer ( 5 years post transplant)

11. Go visit Vandussen Gardens

12. Go to at least 1 concert a year ( May is Thomas Rhett)

13. Go on a hike ( this is very hard for me)

14. Go whale watching

15. See a broadway show

16. Make a quilt

17. Volunteer for cancer agency

18. Volunteer at Stepping stones Bible Camp

19. Rent a pontoon

20. Go in a hot air balloon

21. Try paddle boarding

22. Visit my family in Quebec

23. Watch all the Harry Potter movies

24. Learn to draw

25. Learn to crochet stuffed creatures

26. Visit Texas

27. Go to a Vancouver Canucks game

28. Help the homeless

29. Help someone dealing with cancer

30. Go on a weekend getaway with just Madison

31. Do a fun adventure with each kid

32. Build muscle back in my weak body

33. Read the bible from start to finish

34. Try snowboarding or go skiing for my second time

35. Write a book about my cancer journey for personal publication only

36. Take a course of some sort

37. Drive a race car

38. Make a comic book with Dylan

39. Renew my vows to Aaron

40. Take cooking lessons!

As I complete items on this list, I will let you know !

Happy 2019!

We had a super low key New years eve. Kids were all gone to friends houses and I was not well. Surprise, surprise. I still enjoyed my evening watching Crazy Rich Asian’s and a hallmark movie. Aaron was content. Thankfully.

No resolutions but to take it one day at a time. I also need to accept and be okay when God decides to interrupt my plans. We all know that happens.

I do have one plan . I want to go on vacation with my family. Probably won’t happen but it’s the best year with our kids ages and we have never gone away anywhere on an airplane. We need a vacation. Don’t we all? 😆

Happy New year everyone! Praying you have a healthy, wonderful year.

New Years Resolutions… Goodbye

As we are coming close to it being 2 years since I was diagnosed with cancer, I reflect on what I have been through and what I have learned about myself and about life.

This time last year you can imagine how ready I was to say goodbye to 2017. From start to finish it was hard, crazy really to think about. This year has proven to be hard as well, with how much slower paced my life has become and how I expected to be all better but instead have struggles everyday. I should be ready to say goodbye to 2018 and I am but I think differently about resolutions.

Many people set resolutions for January 1st. Including me.While this is great to aspire to improve your health, your relationships , your spiritual life, your finances or anything really , we need to remember that everyday is a new day. You don’t have to wait for only January 1st. This year I learned to take things one day at a time. I think our expectations of ourselves are so high and once we give up on those January 1st , which often happens, we think, “well there’s always next year.” So try to go into January not with the all or nothing attitude but with the attitude that there’s a new day right around the corner.

Everyday resolutions for me …

Pray

Be happy

-Take care of my health

-In good and bad ALWAYS be thankful to God. He has a reason for what He’s doing

-Encourage others.

-Forgive

Make sure my kids feel loved

I could go on . If you pray and ask God to help you. He will. He sure has been by my side and leaning on God has helped me stay focused on daily goals and resolutions.

Galatians 6:8

Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.

These pictures were taken 2 years ago to the day. I was at Mount Baker with my family and friends and I slept in the van at the top of the hill because I was sick. We didn’t know just how sick I actually was.