December 2015

Welcome to the End

December 1st. The first day of the last month of this insane year is drawing to a close. Much has occurred this year. Some good, some not so good. I will be the first to admit that I was done with 2015 barely halfway through it. I feel like this year has been more harsh than many years past for myself, loved ones, and so many people that I know. There has been much bad news, deaths, tragedy. So much so that I have wholly rejoiced at every marriage, pregnancy, and birth as hope.

So, I will bide my time and focus on life for this last month of 2015. I do still want this year to end. People can only be strong for so long. I would like a fresh perspective with a new year. I have enjoyed the end of year holidays to date and am looking forward to Christmas. I do not want anything major. I would like for the world to settle down and for no new surprises to arise.

Thankful November

I did start off November on Facebook listing things that I am grateful and thankful for. I did lose some of my steam as I focused on helping my husband through his recovery. It has been over the past month that I could appreciate being able to contact my mother easily by phone and text. I have learned how appreciate I am of the man I have chosen to be married to. I am appreciative of my in-laws, even when they sometimes drive me crazy, I step back and remember that they are in-laws! and they are some of my best family.

The month of reflection also allowed me to be appreciate and be thankful for who I have become and am still becoming as a woman, as an adult, as a human. I strive to help others. I like to teach and guide. I still have my inner creativity as I relearn how to express it. I love reading. I am learning to love this blog. Even though I struggle with some of my own health issues, I have learned that I can be strong when needed.

Cancer and Recovery

Husband is doing well. As of today he is 27 days post op recovery from his esophagectomy. He is close enough to day 28, 4 weeks, to make me happy. His j-tube was removed yesterday. He hasn’t been using it. He has actually put on some weight and is working at getting himself fully back to work and is nearing full recovery so much more quickly than anticipated by everyone other than himself. He has consistently stated that he would be back to work within 1 month of surgery. While it’s not full time, he’s back.

He has exceeded every goal I had for him in my head. I have told him that I hope he continues to do so well. He is becoming an inspiration to some recently going through or scheduled for surgery. We had two members of my support groups have their surgery on November 30th. I have tried to keep in touch with some of their loved ones to offer what support I can. This past month has been one of my most harrowing, and I can only imagine how they feel knowing how I felt.

We met with the surgeon on Monday and will see the oncologist tomorrow. His first scan will be in February. If all is clear we will have 6 month scans after that. As of right now, we’re all keeping fingers crossed. There is always the possibility of having it come back as esophageal cancer can be extremely aggressive. Until scans show otherwise, I will be positive and believe that treatment and the surgeon got all of that nasty beast. My husband is a fighter, and is a cancer warrior.

At some point over the next year or two, I would like to find ways to raise awareness for esophageal cancer. After his diagnosis, I kept hearing how underexposed this type of cancer is. People were consistently surprised at receiving the diagnosis, often after only having mild heartburn or hiccups or random swallowing issues. I want to somehow raise awareness. The prevalence of this cancer and the major encouragement of people to self treat with OTC acid reducers is part of the problem, even if that is not how my husband’s started. It is one masking issue.

PCOS and Me

I am having a renewal of focus on self. This will also include my focus on PCOS. As my husband’s health issues ease up, mine are coming back to the forefront. I plan on trying a new razor for my unwanted facial hair. Waxing and hair removal creams do not work for me. The later leaves too much hair and the former leaves me with immediate acne in the opened follicles. I have been shaving my face for years. If anything ever takes my husband away from me, I might just try letting my beard grow out.

My hair is still thinning. To me, it is noticeable. Planning on trying a hair, skin, and nails supplement from ItWorks. I know a lovely lady that is a distributor for them. That will probably be part of my gift to myself. The bio-availability on that product sounds better than others. It would also be great if my nails could stop breaking. This supplement will hopefully help both issues.

Weight continues to be a problem. I am resuming the course set for me by medical weight loss. While my husband has been dealing with his problems, I deviated from their plan. I wanted to try mindful eating instead of counting calories, protein, and carbohydrates. Let me tell you, mindful eating does not work for stress eaters. I am fairly sure I have not reached my starting weight from the beginning of the year, but I am pretty sure I have put back on some pounds. At my upcoming appointment, I will know where I stand.

PCOS really does affect my ability to lose weight and keep it off. Weirdly, my labs are always normal or the high end of normal. So, I don’t actually know what is wrong if anything. Luckily, my menses have stabilized enough for the app I use to actually give me an accurate start date to within a few days, usually. That is something I have struggled with as well. Irregularity is rough on my body.

Awareness Matters Be Kind. Always.

My Mother

I wanted to wish my mother happy birthday (again!). I know that now it’s after, but I did make my wishes on your big day. I loved that your coworkers spiffed you up and drove you a little nuts. I know that there have been plenty of times recently that you have wanted to be here with us. I know you love me to pieces. The older I get, the more I appreciate all you have done and all you continue to do in my life.

My mother is one of my biggest supporters. She tells me things truthfully but with caring. She is wise beyond her years. She wants the best for her children. It is evident to me in how she treats me and my sisters that we really did get lucky to be born to her. She is not perfect, but who is? She is the best mother she can be, and I love her.

And today, I wish her a very merry un-birthday!

Just remember, Mom! This is for you, so you don't forget.
Just remember, Mom! This is for you, so you don’t forget.


Signing Off

So, that is my world of updates, for now. To those people that I had addresses for, your Christmas card will be in the mail this week. I have received 2 for my refrigerator so far! Hoping to have dull news through at least Christmas. Hoping everyone has a safe holiday season. I love everyone that gives us support. I love my family and friends. Looking forward to the end of 2015, and I just hope everyone is safe, well, and healthy!

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