It's my 7 year Myeloma Diagnosis Anniversary!
So many thoughts, so much to "celebrate"! Well maybe "celebrate" is the wrong adjective. How about, so much to "acknowledge", so much to reflect on, so much process! What were YOU doing 7 years ago today between 11:00 and 12:30 am, December 30, 2009?
Yes, 7 years ago today I was diagnosed with Multiple worthless Myeloma. Shock of my life then, now and forever. I still think they got my file confused with someone else.. wink wink!
Yes, 7 years worth of myeloma symptoms... actually make that 8 or 9 years worth of symptoms, as I had signs and symptoms in 2008 and 2009, but thought they were just "change of life" issues lol.
7 years worth of What the Heck, How Can This Be,You've Got the Wrong Gal, Myeloma.
7 years worth of shock, bite the bullet, take lots of meds, chemo, steroids, prep for stem cell transplant July 2010, take lots of maintenance chemo, try to move forward "normally", try to recapture my life as I knew it, then more chemo, more chemo, more chemo and here I am, 12.30.2016, many many chemos, treatments and 24/7 unrelenting side effects later.
7 years of moving forward, hoping for magic. Hoping my body is stronger than cancer. Hoping various chemo regimens keep myeloma in check, but knowing THE medical reality and MY prognosis reality. Knowing my life is balancing on a fragile cliff of possibilities and potentialities. Living every moment, knowing myeloma is incurable, and I will be in treatment forever...
As I leave 2016 behind, I am pensive and pissed. I am strong, but challenged and sad. I am hopeful that Pomalyst will begin pummeling myeloma. I am hopeful my organs can remain "healthy", while chemo kills the myeloma cells. Most of the time I have many words about my circumstances. Today I am feeling less wordy. I'm overwhelmed in so many ways. Positive and negative. Grateful and angry. Happy and sad. Mystified, incredulous, optimistic, and I know "the facts".
Thought it would be interesting and fun to take a walk down my posting memory lane, as I've reflected on this date, December 30, since I began this blog. I can see the evolution of my musings, expression of details and level of psychological disclosure from 2010 to now. I've linked my Dec 30 posts here, in case you too want to read my annual thoughts on this life changing day of my life. The details of my diagnosis will FOREVER be cemented in my psyche, but it's so interesting for me to read what came out of my fingertips each year. Not sure which post is my favorite, but many have let me know my "list" from last year's post was very meaningful to them and their lives. So here it is (below the links), in case you don't have time to peruse all my Dec 30th posts.
Reflections on a life changed by a Multiple Myeloma diagnosis, Dec 30, 2009:
Dec 30, 2010 I'm ALIVE!! One Year Ago Today I was Diagnosed
Dec 30, 2011 Diagnosis: Multiple Myeloma 12-30-2009
Dec 30, 2012 3 years ago today I was diagnosed with CANCER
Dec 30, 2013 4 years and counting..still counting...never stop counting!
Dec 30, 2014 5 Years ago TODAY... Boom! MM forever Changed my Life
Dec 30, 2015 6 Years Ago Today, and I'm Still Here To Talk About It! 5 x 6 = 30
And "The 2015 List" of life reflections, a life forever changed by a Myeloma diagnosis:
Cancer changes you. Battling incurable cancer for years changes you. Being treated for cancer continually, changes you. Wears on you. Wears you down. Mentally and Physically. But you battle. You battle for all it's worth. You battle for hope. Hope that you have additional years...
Here's my 2 cents. What I know. What I learned. What I do:
Pay attention, listen to your body, Don't ignore strange symptoms, Ever!
Get regular blood tests, discuss the results, in detail
Be proactive with your health
Eat well, Healthy, but Fun
Lower your stress. Stress is a trigger. Stress is a killer.
Get rid of negativity and negative people
Laugh a lot, a lot, often!
Speak your mind, be real, be you, be sincere
Shut up, listen, process, analyze
Breathe very deeply often
Smile often. Smile at the little things you notice
Be around people that Inspire you, Energize you, Empower you, Make you happy
Shake off negativity, delete it from your life
Delete negative things from your life
Laugh at ridiculousness
Laugh out loud a lot
Laugh just because
Cry when you need to
Don't repress your feelings
Ask a lot of questions, don't fear honest answers
Rid your life of that which brings you down, or complicates things unnecessarily
Less is More
Less really is More
Eat and drink the rainbow, but have ice cream and cookies and potato chips too
Don't try to be in control all the time
Trying to control things adds big stress
Balance, moderation, simplicity
Impatience becomes Patience
Do for you
Do for others
Be brave, but it's ok to be scared
Fear heightens our awareness, insights and our acuity
Don't fear, fear
Make your monsters your friend
Talk, share, laugh, ask, question
Do what you love
Love what you do
Do because you can
Pay attention to your needs
Pay attention to other's needs
Set boundaries, and don't feel guilty
Big things become small things
Live life now, don't wait
Use your things, don't wait
Every day is special
Every day is a Bucket List day
Say yes as often as you can
But say No just as freely
Play and be playful
Do your hobbies
Love your job, your career, your goals
Book that trip, take that walk, ride what you love to ride
Breathe in nature and all this beautiful earth offers
Appreciate others always
Say please and thank you
Smile with others, to others and while alone
Notice the little things
Process the big things
Stop and pay attention
Be aware, notice life, immerse yourself
Thank your medical team, your family, your friends, your co workers
Rescue, adopt an abandoned, abused, needy animal
Or take treats to your local animal shelter
Donate clothes, blankets, shoes to those that need them
Put a smile on someone's face as often as you can
Keep a smile on your face as often as you can
Take a lot of pictures
Write your story
Tell your story
Give, give however you can
Give of yourself, your time, your things, your accomplishments
Share you with them
Say it, express it
Live Life Every Day
Hug those you love, always tell them you love them
You Have No Guarantee of Tomorrow- Embrace Life Now!
Thank you SO much for this wonderful post. It really hits home. God bless you for a happy and as healthy as possible New Year!ReplyDelete
Hi Anonymous! Thank you so much for letting me know you enjoyed my post! Happy New Year to you and yours also!Delete
Happy New Year to you my friend. Very important post I like it. The words you say I can hear your struggle, challenges, hurts and hopes. Each day is a blessing and telling those around "I love you" is so touching because we don't know what the future holds. Shoshauni has learned this and is pretty good at it now. Again, I can't tell you how grateful I am to have had you by my side to kick my in the butt regarding my education. I have that BA Degree and yet I feel lost, I'm either over qualified, not qualified and/or don't have teaching credentials. WHAT? My private school I worked for allowed me to do thing's I only dreamed of doing: teaching PE and coaching sports (being paid). My passionate for coaching won't get me "rich" but I want to spread my knowledge, confidence building and recruiting to a different level. But like you said, I can't stay in a rut and just wish/dream about it. Action is what comes next. Take care my friend and I pray for you everyday. Still waiting for that visit with you when you're up to it. Miss you - TheresaReplyDelete
Hi Theresa, yes it's crazy with all your life time sports experience, you haven't been able to find a position where you can really share all your talents. Can't believe Shoshauni is all "grown up"!! Where did time go for all of us! Hope to see u very soon. I'll message you. Love you sweet friend! Thanks for always checking in and letting me know you read my rants! xoxoDelete
My mom died today after battling multiple myeloma for four years so be blessed and know that you are still her for a reason.ReplyDelete
Hi Anonymous, I am so very sorry to read of your Mom's passing :(( I can only imagine her myeloma journey for 4 years. If you read this, please tell me her story to honor her. Thank you for your kind words, and I truly don't understand why some patients are taken too early and some last beyond imagination. I have been close to "not making it" several times, then the chemo meds bring me back. I hate this for you and everyone else suffering from this insane cancer. My heart is with you and your family. Hoping beautiful memories sustain you and your family. xoxoDelete
Thank you Anna for checking in and appreciating my writings :))Delete
Hi Julie, my name is Judy. After reading your posts back from 2012, I thank you and always relate to your feelings, emotions, and especially your humor, it does help our fear and is an outlet for other feelings including anger. Give your animals a pat for me, but be careful for those manure bins. Much love to you and a kind 2017.ReplyDelete
Hi Judy, just saw your comment! Thank you so very much for commenting letting me know you've been following my crazy tale since 2012! Yes, the spectrum of emotions we feel from our journey is like none other. Thank you for appreciating my open expression of all my feelings. I do always try to see the "glass half full" and that fine line between "humor and tragedy" :)) Please tell me your story if you see this! Thank you for commenting and letting me know you've been following since 2012!! wow :)) xoxoDelete