Thursday, February 20, 2014

A child's prediction

I just remembered a thought I had when I was a little girl.  I think I was in the fourth or fifth grade, and both of my grandfathers had already died from different cancers.  My aunt was battling cancer, as well. 
I remember noticing one day that both my grandfathers had blue eyes.  My aunt also had blue eyes.  I had blue eyes.  No one else in our family had blue eyes...that I could think of.  I remember really investigating this, I think it was a holiday dinner at grandmas, where everyone, all my cousins and aunts and uncles were.  I remember looking at everyone.  Checking out their eyes.

It sounds funny, but I was serious.  I can't believe I forgot all about this.  I was convinced there was a link between cancer and blue eyes.  I also was convinced I was going to get cancer, because it ran in my family (those who had blue eyes). 

Sunday, February 2, 2014

One Year Anniversary...oh how my life has changed!

One year ago today, I went to Urgent Care thinking I had the flu and was a bit anemic.  Instead, I was informed (bluntly) I had leukemia with only days to live, and an ambulance rushed me to a hospital in Chicago.  I spent 5 weeks in the same hospital room.  I had my gallbladder removed a couple days later, a hickman port installed in my chest with three tubes hanging out of it.  I lived attached to an IV that went with me everywhere.  I lost my hair.  I got used to vomiting (often).  I went from a probiotic and multivitamin every morning to over 10 pills with breakfast alone.  I experienced chemotherapy (a lot of it).  I found out what health insurance really is and what they cover.  I learned to fight for myself.  I learned that the drug that saves me costs $5,000 out of pocket each month.  Yep.  I learned a lot.


Today is the anniversary I got my life back.  I almost died, but the wonderful doctors and amazing nursing staff saved my life.  This past year has been a gift.  I promised God one year ago today that I would make a difference in this world, and I wasn't ready to die.  I hope God knows I am trying to move in the right direction.  I've walked and raised money for the Humane Society.  I've walked for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.  I've made cookies for others in chemo.   I've made cookies for a bake sale to help another person overwhelmed by medical issues and bills.  I've tried to be more helpful.  I care more about others than I ever did before.

This is only the beginning. 

I am happy to wake up each and every morning.  I love life and can't wait to get back to living!  I am committed to continue helping others through their own cancer story, as they heal so they can get back to living.

I am ever so grateful.