Baldies' Blog began originally in the UK by a 26 year old journalist with a blood cancer on a mission to inform the world about bone marrow donation.

He has since died, and I took on the cause of making cancer care more transparent for everybody.

Cancer is a disease that will touch everybody through diagnosis or affiliation: 1 in 2 men will be diagnosed and 1 in 3 woman will hear those words, "You Have Cancer."

I invite you to read how I feel along my journey and
how I am continuing to live a full life alongside my Hodgkin's lymphoma, with me controlling my cancer, not my cancer controlling me.

I hope that "Baldies' Blog" will prepare you to handle whatever life sends you, but especially if it's the message, "You Have Cancer."

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Sunday, January 10, 2010

My Favorite Stage: RECOVERY

I’m in my favorite stage of treatment: recovery!

Actually, I would say recovered.

After the initial start of steroid therapy it takes a couple weeks to reorganize yourself and trust that the change will stay.

You never really appreciate how sweet life is until all the joy has been sucked out of it. Everytime I make significant leaps and bounds in healing, I feel like a whole new woman, with a whole new lease on life.

Thank you everybody for the words of encouragement.

They have been integral in reminding me who I am. Struggling for so long just to sustain the basic needs of my body (breathing!) will make you forget about those little sparks that make you.

It’s so important, in life, to make sure the basic needs of people are met. Without the fundamentals, the basics, nothing can be built.

I think this simple fact has been lost in our fast paced world of distractions.

It’s like the basketball coach that wants their team to do intricate plays before first teaching individual ball handling skills, dribbling, and passing.

You have to first have a strong foundation before great things can be built.

My body is my foundation, and now I have it back!

I’m using this time like I have for the past years: to enjoy friends, family, and hopefully make a lasting impact.

In my life review this December, I realized the best thing I have done is to keep living through out treatment.

The best thing anybody can do when facing trials like mine is to make the best of what has to be done: throw parties in the chemo room, learn to knit or draw, and absolutely, still force yourself out to participate in the world.

Forcing myself to leave my house to attend functions even when I was clearly sick and disabled has given me such positive feedback.

Of course, there is always the vanity hurdle.

I knew this existed for many who don’t want to show their face in public looking sick or weak, but I always put on my brave face and bald head to run out in the world.

With the addition of oxygen, that all changed. I grew up with stereotypes regarding who had to wear oxygen. These people were smokers. They smelled. They were likely low income and uneducated. They had holes where there should have been teeth and clothes littered with cat hair and stench.

Suddenly, I had the tank.

I wanted to joke when people stared and say things like, “No smoking kids!” or “This could be your future.” But none of this seemed funny.

I couldn’t find the sense of humor in it.

This period of health will help me deal mentally with the stereotypesI have regarding people in need of wearing oxygen. I will likely be one of them again, even though my pulmonologist did recommend several possible treatments such as photopharesis.

I almost wonder if an ablative transplant that implants my sister’s cells would work, but that’s just a wonder. It’s not something that would, should, or could actually happen.

Today starts our new Sunday routine. X and I will be attending church with my parents before grocery shopping.

This way we can still keep our coveted playdate later.

Jon is off to San Diego today.

He is feeling like a big wig flying across the country to bring a job back home to NH. He’s been gloating for weeks, and I am insanely jealous


Anonymous said...

Hope this finds you continuing to enjoy a great week Hill. Thinking of you & wishing you well.


Anonymous said...

So happy you are able to enjoy living your life! Will pray that it continues for you!