Finally, you say! I am back and I have news abundant. First things first, lets get the health stuff out of the way. We finally have PET sean news! As you know I had a PET scan last Tuesday to check and see how I was progressing after the first two rounds of chemo and… I am progressing indeed and in the RIGHT direction this time! The scan showed that the areas that had previously lit up brightly with cancerous activity have now gone down to a dull glow. There are no new areas that are lighting up and some areas have quit lighting up all together. Thank. You. God. So the plan is to stick with the same chemo regimen that I have been doing and I will hopefully only have 2 more rounds after this round is finished! Hallelujah!! I have two more treatments in this round and then I am off for Christmas, but after that, if I continue to do better I should be done with chemotherapy by the end of February.
Apart from the cancerous activity on the scan, we could also see how my bones were doing. If you’ll remember, I had fractures in both of my hips and some delicate areas in my spine. The scan showed that there are still fractures that have not completely healed, but they are not any worse and they seem to be looking a little better. It may be some time before they are completely healed but the good news is that Im not having any pain in those areas like I was before. I can still walk and move comfortably and that is certainly a blessing!
Speaking of walking and moving comfortably, I have taken that a step even further this week. Normally I wake up feeling terrible. By morning time, it’s been hours since my last meds, I’m feeling the usual grog of the morning and then some, and I’ve usually spent the whole night fighting off hot flashes that cause me to change my clothes and sheets sometimes two and three times a night. However, yesterday morning and today, I pushed through the morning funk and I exercised! I exercised! That’s right, I took the dogs outside into the crisp morning air and we walked/jogged a few laps around our lovely backyard. Now I know that doesn’t sound like much, especially considering I was running multiple miles at a time this summer, but considering that two months ago I lost 25 lbs, all of my muscle, and a few weeks of my life… I thought that was pretty good! And I even did an afternoon workout yesterday and I plan to do one today as soon as I finish this post. I know it sounds crazy because you’re supposed to just rest and relax while you’re doing chemotherapy right? But I say to heck with that, I have worked hard to gain back my weight and I have successfully gained 25 lbs in the last two months. Now, I’m ready to turn that weight back into muscle and take back the life that the devil keeps trying so hard to keep from me.
My scans are looking good. I am living relatively pain free. I am eating whatever I want. I am eating healthy again. I have gained back weight so I don’t have to roll over my jeans any more…(Oh yeah, it was bad for a while!) and I am determined now more than ever that I WILL live, and I will live abundantly. With God’s help and His grace, no one and no thing will keep me from living in the freedom and joy that He has for me. And I want to encourage you to do the same! Sometimes I feel like all I am doing in this life is trying to stay alive from one attack to the next. Don’t you? Whether it’s health stuff, job loss, family problems, marital issues, lack of guidance in life, depression, loss of a pregnancy, loneliness, feelings of shame… we all deal with the attacks. In case you weren’t aware, it’s what satan does. And he’s good at it. He knows just what buttons to push and when to push them and if you’re not careful, all you’ll find yourself doing is trying to stay alive from one attack to the next. “But take heart,” Jesus says, “for I have overcome the world.” And He has.
In between those attacks you guys, that’s life! That’s the time where you have to make a decision. And that decision is whether you are going to lay down, and quit, and wallow, and wish, or whether you are going to stand up, take your place as a child of the most high God, and use ALL that you are given to never cease praising His name. Ok, I know that you have heard that before, but it’s something that a lot of Christians forget is a part of the “package deal.” Because it’s easy to praise God’s name when you get a promotion at work, when your marriage is better than ever, when you know exactly what your next few steps are going to be, and when your emotions are on a high and feeling fine. In those moments, it’s easy to turn to God and to thank Him for being good, but what about in the midst of the storm? God never promised that life would be without it’s storms. Remember? In fact, He promised we would have storms. And as Christians, we have to see that just because a storm in raging around us, that doesn’t mean God’s goodness has changed. It just means that we have to hold on to His had a little tighter, look to Him in all of His goodness, and say “Yet I will praise You.” Do you see that? Life is going to come. You will be attacked. But our God will NEVER change. I cannot tell you what comfort that is bringing to me today just to dwell on that thought, and I pray God overwhelms you all today with the same comfort that I am feeling.
Now on to the fun stuff because hey, it’s CHRISTMAS TIME!!! The most wonderful time of the year. I have been busy decorating and making our first house as magical as possible because if you know Bryan Taylor, you know how utterly obsessed he is with Christmas time 🙂 and I am happy to indulge! In lieu of the Christmas Season, we also just hosted the first annual Taylor Vance Christmas Shindig with a lot of our friends so I will be posting several pictures of the festivities from the evening as well as pictures of our own house all decorated for the season. But before you see the party pictures, yes we all wore pajamas, yes we have all graduated or are in professional school, and yes it was the most comfortable party ever!
Thank you all for praying for the PET scan results and keep praying that the chemo continues to do it’s job so that I can stick to the two more rounds time line. Love to you ALL!