Saturday, January 25, 2014


I had chemo yesterday and I have been a little bit nauseated, but I haven't even thrown up yet! Hooray!
This first picture is of me and my patient advocate who I adore, not only because she is 4'10", but because she is a very happy and kind person and her name is Louise.

This is my port getting accessed for the first time while I wasn't heavily medicated. Chemo Fridays!

When you are diagnosed with cancer, everybody thinks that is your trial. The truth is, I still have a life and all the drama and disappointments that come along with it. I just have cancer as my cherry on top, and that really puts a delay on life sometimes. I have as many dreams and aspirations as the next person, but I also have been told that I'm not going to make it. There's a semi big frustration, on par with hitting McDonalds at 10:31 AM, one minute after breakfast closes, and being told there's nothing you can do to get your sausage McMuffin and hash brown.
This last week, all of my finger tips went numb on my left hand, and my face is still just as numb. I feel so frustrated and helpless. When I was little I always thought parents, family, bishop, and doctors could solve all of my problems. It's scary to have a problem that nobody can solve, and that not even mommy can kiss better.  
Here's another annoying frustration to me (besides the fact that now I am much slower at typing, due to the numbness in my left hand). When people are insensitive. Nothing frustrates me more than a rude, careless, bull headed, insensitive and most likely insecure person.
This last week I was hanging out with my friends at a nearby place and friends had been bailing on me all day long (really not trying to sound like a drama queen, but it's definitely coming across that way). Nothing to me had seemed to be going right. (So Jr. High, right?). Anyways I was frustrated to the point where I left on foot and walked next door to the bowling alley where my brother and his friend happened to be. Also there, was my cousin because it was his birthday, and his friends. So I went and jumped on my cousin to be annoying and joke around like I always do. One of the people from his friend group, that I later found out was just a tag along, started a conversation with me and was being a little vicious. 
I don't know exactly how it got out of control, but it did. So I told him "Hey, you can't talk to me like that!" And what was his response? "Why not?" I told him "Because you shouldn't be talking to me like that." and he said "Why not?" (Obviously this is where I pull the cancer card and say....) "Because I have cancer!" 

This is where the situation gets almost disturbing, when he replies "Well you're half dead anyways cause you have cancer so it shouldn't matter to you anyways."

I'M HALF DEAD ANYWAYS? What kind of dreadfully awful individual would ever say a thing like that?
I definitely didn't sit there and take it politely, quite contrary actually. But people from my blog seem to think I'm some kind of hero, and I'd like to try and maintain that image.

He has a cancerous attitude and personality, and I felt sorry for myself, while in my bed for about the next 24 hours after that. But I realized, I should feel more sorry for him. I'm more alive than he might ever be. Yeah I have my quirks with people, but I also know how to genuinely appreciate someone, and that's more than he's ever learned in his 30+ years of overeating and bullying. (Uncalled for I know).

Here's the moral to my story. You might not have cancer, but it's easier than you think to catch a cancerous attitude. Learn to appreciate people while you have them, and despite their troubles, trials and worries. You'll never see exactly the same as somebody else, take it from an identical twin. But you can learn to see beauty in the way that others see things, and live their lives, and that's why we're here.

I know I've been complaining a lot recently, but I'm trying to display the raw honesty behind a life with my particular trial. The only way I know how to do it is through words and stories, so here ya go! Thanks for reading, supporting, praying, and commenting. I truly do appreciate it!
I can do hard things!

Monday, January 20, 2014

Celine Dion

So if you've ever met me, you probably know that I LOVE CELINE DION. I always have and I always will. If you haven't heard her new album "Loved Me Back To Life," then call me so I can remove the boulder you're hiding under because it's fantastic. I realize not everybody is a fan like I am, but come on, the woman can sing.
It was on my bucket list to get to one of her concerts, and not only did I get to hear her sing, I got to meet her. It was INCREDIBLE. She is better live then she is on recordings, seriously breath taking. She was so nice and seemed like just another normal person. I had my arm around her for one of the pictures and I said "Holy cow! Your tiny!" and she said "You are too!" back to me. I don't know why it was such a funny moment, but it was, and we laughed.
I painted a water color for her that said "I'm thankful my prayers have been answered" and if you don't know where I got those words you should probably definitely listen to her more often. Here goes some pictures!

We waited to meet her in the classiest room. You can tell I was very excited!

A picture of me with the watercolor painting for Celine!

The fam with Celine

Me and Celine!

Celine giving me a cheeker, (I love cheekers, so on our way out she hugged me and kissed my cheek and I made them take a picture to capture the moment forever)!

So the story behind the next picture goes like this: Jordyn and I went to Mexico the summer of 2012 on a humanitarian trip. This was the last week I had that I felt normal. This was before I had any of my symptoms. You can tell who I am in the picture cause my shirt says my name. This was my last taste of "normal." But I'm realizing after multiple conversations with friends, family, patients, etc. that there is no normal. 
The most normal thing I have in my life is my religion. 
That's one of the only things that hasn't changed. 
I'm bringing this up because I started feeling some symptoms again. My mouth always feels cold. My fingers are numb. My attitude toward life really hasn't been amazing lately. Even though some of the best things in my life have been happening.
One of my favorite quotes comes from A Tale of Two Cities. Charles Dickens. 
"It was the best of times, it was the worst of times."
That's how my life is. Dreadfully awful, and incredibly wonderful at the same time. One of the things (besides the amazing support I get), that makes my life tolerable, is my religion. It never changes. I feel so accepted. And I feel very peaceful on top of it.
I love the feeling of peace. I get that feeling from the LDS church and all it has to offer.

So yeah, maybe sometimes I feel like giving up, like it's too painful to take another step. YEAH, my symptoms just started again and my tumor is bigger than it has ever been. Yeah I have a piece of medal in my chest. Yeah I have a tumor in my brain and in my back. Yeah, I AM SCARED TO DEATH. 
But the gospel brings me peace and that's all I could ever hope for.

I used to be so ripped!

So my incision started opening up and they told me if it comes all the way open, they will have to take it out and put it in again on the other side. They used "Dermabond" to seal it up again while pinching it together and rubbing rubbing alcohol and saline into my open wound. It was painful. Words were said. Anyways this is what my incision currently looks like:

Okay, I'm done now. Have a good week. Thank you for praying for me. The prayers are felt along with the support. 
I can do hard things

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Time After Time

I'm going to be honest like I usually am and come right out and say that I've been very depressed this week which is rare for me. I was supposed to get a port on Wednesday and chemo in a few weeks following. Instead I got my port, and two new kinds of chemo on Tuesday. I was throwing up both Tuesday and Wednesday. Getting a port placed feels like breaking a collar bone, and I would know because I've broken both of mine (one time I was walking on grass and tripped, and the other time I rolled out of bed, I've always been very full of coordination skills). It hurts to go through all of the physical pain and not know if the physical pain will even help you, or if it's just going to hurt. I guess that's where we need to have faith in God's plan and realize he's got full control, and will never put us in a situation we can't handle, or that wasn't right for us.
I am a lot happier today even though my face and tongue are really numb. It's very upsetting to have cancer, but ya live and learn, or so I hear. I'm just going along with it this whole time, and smiling while I do it because smiling makes me happy, and I'd rather be happy than be sad. Even though it's so easy to be sad because I am disappointed time after time.
Ready for some pictures about now? Okay, here we go.
Confession: I'm a hoarder of pictures. I love pictures. I think every moment needs to be captured multiple times, and it's a serious issue, on par with cancer.

This is my purple power port...

...before it  lodged itself in my chest.

During surgery. I was awake! Inhumane, right?

I have the best dad in the whole world. He would feed me sausage mcmuffins even if I bit his fingers, because he's just that good of a dad.

 This is how I look now, it's annoying, but at least they sealed me up good. Hopefully this doesn't look pornographic. I'm just realizing it's pretty revealing, whoops!

My hair is growing out so good! This is how long all of it is today!

Also I still love doing these things (picture hoarder, I'm telling you), so Jordyn and I hit the town (aka the mall), and took a few beauty shots this morning.

As you can see, I didn't post any of the pictures that I always make them take during the surgery. Why? Because they're pretty gruesome and I can't look at them. They make me sick to look at, so maybe one day when I'm not so sensitive I can look through them and post some when I'm a little less nauseated.

Thank you for your love, support, fasting, prayers, and so much more. It's scary. I'm scared. But I'm glad that I know who I am and I know who created me and I know where I'm going eventually. That's the comforting part.

I can do hard things