Friday, May 27, 2011
“When you treat a disease, first treat the mind - Chen Jen”
Well today was another monumental milestone in Mike’s Journey! He now has a picline which will be VERY beneficial to the treatment he receives and give those poor veins a rest.
I have to admit, we were both very nervous about what he was about to undergo, but with such kind words and warm thoughts sent by all (and even very encouraging words from people who have underwent this procedure) our nerves were calm and became steel once again!
The procedure wasn’t as complicated as we had led ourselves to believe, and with a great RN administering it, Mike was relaxed, we both were until the paperwork started flying! Aye! As Mike laid there rested and calm, I broke out with major anxiety and became flush! I have prayed for strength throughout this journey and have been given it, but have not yet really had to provide Mike with any physical care as a nurse would – eeek! (Well other than my awesome back rubs ;) After breathing into the brown bag a few times, I was calm and was able to absorb all the information and I feel very confident I will be the best darn home nurse EVER!
MD Anderson does require us to take 2 classes to ensure we know what we are doing, which is A-OK with me! I realize this is something so common and the procedure is done several times a-day, but I just have to remain confident in myself that I will do great and if Mike is not careful, I might just decide to bedazzle the darn thing!
On a REAL Fun Note (And For ALL The FL Family), Mike will be headed your way at the end of June! He is looking so forward to this trip and as his wife, my heart could not be happier that he is able to take this trip! A trip to rejuvenate his soul and visit with his FL family! With this being a huge year full of ups and downs including all arounds, this trip is much needed and I bet you all in FL are looking forward to seeing him and hearing all about how he got that scar on his head --- Can you believe he is still telling people he was wrestling a shark! (haha!)
In closing, Family and Friends, we continue to thank you all for your kind thoughts, encouraging words, uplifting emails and just the time you take out of your day to put Mike in your prayers --- As I always say and it remains true ---- They are ALL felt!!
Mike and I wish you a very Happy and Safe Memorial Day weekend with loved ones! Don’t forget to thank a solider or even hug one if you see he/she!
Tuesday, May 24, 2011
“God can pick sense out of a confused prayer - Richard Sibbes”
Well what a weekend huh? End of the world not happening, which selfishly I was happy because I got to spend a wonderful birthday weekend with Hubby, Family and Friends!
I know I wrote last week updating all of Mike’s most recent visit with the information of him getting back on the mega-dose chemo and not leaving out of MD Anderson ALL smiles, but still confident that Mike is on the road to healing and that the Doctors are working 24/7 behind the scenes as always to ensure that he remains getting the best treatment.
This week Mike will go in for a procedure to insert a Longline Catheter Insertion. We have debated back and forth getting this done, but after the last few times of giving blood and receiving treatment, his available veins are getting more scarce. Dr. Tsao and her team recommended this and we pray that this will allow him to receive all blood work, treatment and any other liquids that have to be inserted and will consist of a simple insertion of the fluids and go straight where they need to go.
Now as with ANY procedure of course there are warnings and side effects, but Dr. Tsao’s office reassured us this procedure has become so common that the likely hood of any negative side effects are minimal – but of course they have to give us the disclosures. Mike is nervous for the procedure and with that said Dr. Tsao simply looked at his tattoos and said “you have to be kidding right?” Ha! It was quite funny seeing Mike standing as this petite Doctor with her Prada Heels tapping the floor and arms crossed questioning my Hubby who towers her at 6’2” with many tattoos!
Mike remains in good spirits, but as the rollercoaster of emotions stemming from the latest visit and the upcoming procedure, he is a little anxious and has been in a small mind funk. It has been quite a while since he has felt this way, so I know I must let him gather his thoughts and process it all, but at the same time we don’t have too much time to stay in that mindset – that is when the bad sets in and the thoughts consume you.
As always we thank you for keeping Mike and I both along with family in your prayers through this journey, we continue to feel them daily!! I feel confident during the next few days leading into the procedure Mike will remain in your thoughts strongly and he will overcome this hurdle and have a VERY successful procedure and give those poor veins the rest they deserve!
Next week he will undergo Brain / Spine MRI’s and with these we continue to pray that those will remain Free & Clear of Cancer – results from those will be next week, I will for sure keep you all posted!
In closing, we were given by a dear friend a treadmill which we are going to incorporate in our daily routine to ensure Mike and I remain healthy and strong for all that comes our way. We also have been bike riding as well. Please continue to pray his strength and courage remain high --- He is meant to do great things and I am confident GOD has big plans for him!! Claiming it!
Thank you ALL and much love and gratitude will forever be held in our hearts for you ALL!
Thursday, May 19, 2011
You know we all have our guilty pleasures, and today for my Birthday lunch, Kristie treated me to one of my favs – Carrabba’s!
Anyhow, me being the outspoken one, recognized Johnny Carrabba, but not as him, I thought he was someone else…so I waved and he immediately came to our table. I then froze internally because I thought “Oh shoot, now I recognize him and I don’t know what to say”, so I immediately remembered Mike’s company Dixie has their account and Mike has done personal work for them at their residence, so I just said, “Mike Charnock wanted me to tell you hi!”…
He knew exactly who Mike was and said to say hello as well. I a few minutes later got up to use the ladies room, and he pulled me aside and said that he wanted to let me know that Mike remains in his prayers along with his families too. He had not wanted to intrude our lunch to offer his sentiments due to him not knowing how personal the situation was. I quickly thanked him and updated him. He went on to say what a great guy Mike is and such a good spirit and he is thankful to know him – and has been following my updates all this time, forwarded by someone at his Mike’s office…
I was really touched and just humbled for a man of that magnitude, to say such nice things and about my Hubby – I was proud J
Needless to say, it was an amazing encounter and he is just a really nice man! We will for sure continue our service with them for years to come and now have a special memory!
Thanks for letting me share – I was just excited :)
Wednesday, May 18, 2011
“Hope is faith holding out its hand in the dark ~George Iles”
Days before my birthday, I had hoped that my wish would come true and Mike would be Cancer-Free – at this time, it is not GOD’s plan, but we are still on the road of complete healing!
As always, I was anxious prior to our visit. I hate that the results from the PET Scans and MRI’s are days apart – I wish they were instant! Mike for the last week has had an enlarged lymph node in his neck (remember this is what prompted him to tell his primary care, which led him to get an MRI which led us to receiving the news of the Cancer Diagnosis), I immediately called the doctor to check if this should raise concern. Being that we were days away from the PET Scan, we were just told to wait and we would discuss the results when we meet with Dr. Tsao.
Well the day arrived, and first of all, I must just say how completely blessed we have been for each visit since Mike’s treatment started, has been a positive one and ones that we have walked away from feeling over-joyed and smiles from ear to ear. Today was slightly different. Now don’t misunderstand, Mike remains to be reacting GREAT to the chemo he has been given, in fact so well, he was able to take a break from the HEAVY Mega Chemo to go onto a “maintenance” treatment. As Doctor Tsao and Vikki walked in, they were still VERY happy to see that Mike remains in good spirits and his body along with the chemo continue to fight the Cancer BUT a small raise of concern arose with these current results.
As we figured, the lymph nodes were swollen for a reason. The PET Scan shows several of them inflamed, which Dr. Tsao explained that with the Cancer lying stable for a little while now and continuing to shrink, it seems to be waking up a little, so with that the lymph nodes sense this and go into attack mode and start fighting. Dr. Tsao is very confident with his health and his “Strong Like Bull” immune system, that he will continue to fight the Cancer very well! However, to ensure that no chances are taken of the Cancer getting out of control, they have put him back on the MEGA-Chemo starting today (05/18/11) and he will under-go four treatments – after this, they will do another PET Scan, re-evaluate the need for the MEGA-dose and if needed continue or remove again and just continue with the maintenance chemo. Dr. Tsao warned him that he will lose his hair (which we are already are used to and enjoying his bald noggin). We do continue to pray that he will have minimal side effects as he has had in the past and maintains his energy and strength that has been built back up.
Onto the 2nd part of our visit. (See I suppose it is better when I do not bombard you all with constant emails, it saves me time to enjoy writing my novel – haha!) Dr, Tsao also informed us today (which was another reason for getting back on the MEGA-Chemo), was that a new lesion has popped up on Mike’s spleen. Now we both were not immediately familiar of what the spleen actually does, but thank you Dr. Tsao for the information ---- > “The spleen is an organ located under the ribs on the left side of the body. It is part of the lymphatic system, which is composed of lymph nodes” Immediately we both panicked, but we were quickly calmed by Dr. Tsao and Vikki --- They both went directly into battle mode and before we knew it, had his chemo switched and added a new chemo agent to help with this attack. The reason for the Cancer ending up on the spleen is not specifically known, but not uncommon with Lung Cancer.
Mike and I have become quite spoiled with every doctor visit ending on a GREAT note, and today we felt a little sad before we left, but Dr. Tsao and Vikki reassured us that Mike remains in GREAT health, he is strong, his immune system is VERY strong (therefore why the lymph nodes are inflamed fighting off this Cancer) and they remain very confident that Mike will continue to stay on the road of recovery and remains on the path of healing and being Cancer-Free! She reassured us that his Brain and Spine remain Free and Clear of Cancer and that within itself that is a great triumph with the Cancer that Mike was diagnosed with almost a year ago. Dr. Tsao reminded us that it has ONLY been since October 2010 that Mike started receiving treatment, and from the original reports that he had when this started to how well he is doing now, he remains a miracle of GOD and this is a small curve ball, but nothing that the chemo will not knock out.
Mike and I move forward with our hearts focused on GOD and remain knowing that GOD has HUGE plans for Mike – this battle is not Over and the Devil is not winning! As Mike has said, he does remain Strong Like The Bull and though this was not a visit that consisted of us Kart-Wheeling out of MD Anderson, we left the Doctors office grateful for the news and the strength to continue this fight and the courage along with complete faith that is instilled in us to know that Mike WILL BE Cancer-Free!!
To ALL that read this, Family and Friends – you ALL continue to amaze us daily with your warmth, words of wisdom, hope and messages of inspiration! There is not a day that goes by that we are not so very thankful for GOD putting each and EVERY one of you in our lives Before, During and After this Journey…for you all have given and continue to give us the gift of love – something that the DEVIL can never take away from us – NEVER!
In closing, Mike will undergo Brain / Spine MRI’s the first part of June and we will continue to pray for clearance of those areas. I will continue to keep you all posted on the progression of the chemo attack on the Cancer. Mike feels ALL of your prayers, believe this. GOD has ALREADY and continues to perform miracles daily in our lives – he is not about to stop!
Much Love to you ALL – XOXO Lyndie
PS – Please continue to keep ALL families and friends affected by Cancer close to your heart. Some are not nearly as fortunate as Mike remains and GOD has chosen their journey to end…we have been inspired by many and will continue to be. Also, please keep close in your heart all that are being affected by the floods of the Mississippi River…many are family and friends of ours. Thank you!
Wednesday, May 11, 2011
“No God, no peace. Know God, know peace - Author Unknown”
I had heard this quote once before a while ago. It was posted on a website that not just directs itself to Christians, BUT ALL that believe and trust in a Higher Power. As I scrolled through the posting, I noticed there were a lot of people that were thanking the Author for posting such a wonderful article and then there were the ones that seemed to be nothing but predators and posting nothing but mean replies to the Author. They questioned the Bible and all the “conspiracy” theories against the Bible and if there REALLY is a GOD above. I immediately got on the defense and started to post something about my beliefs and that those people should not be on a Christian website if they are going to use it as a form of attack…I declined to retaliate and just simply prayed for them.
I know that there are a lot of non-believers in the world and a lot who maybe only pray when something is wrong or there is trouble in their lives. I cannot fault the ones out there who question the beliefs of us that do trust in a Higher Power and put our complete faith in HIM at all times in our life, for it is just the same as someone who believes that there REALLY is a Pot of GOLD at the end of a rainbow -- I myself have never followed a rainbow to the end, so who am I to say there isn't?
I suppose my thought is why is it such a HUGE deal if we choose to believe in GOD? If we choose to take everything that happens in our lives whether it be good or bad, to Praise GOD for it ALL, what is the wrong in that? If I have a great hair day and I choose to thank GOD for it, then so be it. If I get a promotion at work, I know that behind the workings of my Employer that GOD is in control of the paths that I am headed down and all that comes my way.
As they say GOD works in mysterious ways and I like it that way. In my life I am not always excited about the journeys GOD has put me on, but I trust that I am on it for a reason and as I come into my 32nd year on this Earth, I stand true to my statement. I was devastated when Mike was diagnosed last year with Cancer. Our lives took a complete 180 degree turn BUT in the same breath, Mike and I have become closer to GOD than we have ever been and we see miracles happen in our lives daily to us and people that we have been blessed to have in our lives.
GOD has and continues to instill me daily with strength, courage and above all else peace. Though at the moment my days are chaotic with all the goings on of life – I truly have complete peace right now. I have peace in knowing that Mike is on the road to healing and being Cancer Free (I have CLAIMED this!). I have peace knowing that GOD truly knows what is best for us and the plan he has for me, may not be the plan he has for you, but it will never stop me and it should never stop YOU from trusting HIM and having complete faith that my path, your path is going to continue to offer much growth. And remember the things that we may not understand will one day reveal themselves to us – whether it be tomorrow, next month, next year or when we are standing at the Pearly Gates.
In closing, I will never stop believing that the statement stands true, “NO GOD, NO Peace.”
Thursday, May 5, 2011
"A happy person is not a person in a certain set of circumstances, but rather a person with a certain set of attitudes - Hugh Downs"
Just Received Word From My Cousin James Hard That Was Diagnosed W/Throat Cancer Last Year Has Just Received His PET Scan Results -- Because of MANY Prayers & Treatment He is CANCER FREE!!! GOD is Working Some Major OT in Our Family!! Thank You LORD!!! Do Not Under Estimate The Power Of Prayer!!
James Posted This To Family & Friends on Facebook Today ---> "I want to sincerely thank all who sent prayers and encouraging messages my way. I got clarification that my PET scan come back cancer free. The Dr's were amazed at the test results showing no cancer. I believe it promotes that prayers and a positive attitude will help heal. Thanks again to all, next test in 3 months..."
We Love you Cousin and With the news of Aunt Julie Being Cancer Free Just months ago and now you -- I Know Mike is Next -- I will Continue to CLAIM IT!
Family and Friends, Thank you all so much for the continued prayers and support! GOD is Mighty Man and Has His Grace Upon Our Family. Please continue to Keep My Family along with all others that are battling this Devil Cursed Disease and trust that your prayers are being heard!
The value of consistent prayer is not that HE will hear us, but that we will hear HIM - William McGill”
I am thankful for all the people Mike and I meet when we visit MD Anderson. We meet people with stories of triumph over Cancer, we meet people with heart-breaking stories but with everyone we meet, we all share the same thing – faith. No matter the circumstance that has brought them to MD Anderson, we have been blessed to meet such people with amazing faith during these times that are so painful for many.
Kade is no different. We met Kade while Mike was in the hospital a few months back. They instantly hit it off due to them sharing the same scars (which they both underwent brain surgery to remove tumors). Kade was a character right off the bat and in him I sensed a little of my hubby as well. A man larger than life, yet so vulnerable at the time due to the battle of Cancer. He and Mike are a lot alike as well in the fact they are just good ole’ southern boys and “Ain't no surgery going to keep us down and surely aunt no Cancer going to defeat me!”
There many many times with Kade at the hospital was his cousin Lisa. More like a sister I would have to describe her. The amount of love and dedication that Lisa provides under the most heated moments (the meds that they have you on are horrible and cause for HUGE mood swings). Lisa always is such a shining spirit and very striking in her beauty – but along with that, she is a true angel brought her to be with Kade during this time. Unfortunately we were not able to meet more of Kade’s family, but I can imagine they are all just the same in heart and soul.
I have maintained contact with Lisa often. We email and message often upon a victorious visit to MD Anderson and always praising GOD for the journey he has placed us on and know that he continues to abide by HIS plan. Lisa like myself is very strong in her faith and I feel has been a true strong hold for her family during this time. With the ups and downs and the ever changing days of this disease, Lisa has maintained and remains strong – I have much admiration for her and thankful to call her a friend.
As of last Friday, Kade has been in ICU at MD Anderson. They believe he suffered what mimics a stroke. Lisa messaged me this AM and informed me that Kade will be leaving MD tomorrow with Hospice. The family is devastated but remain faithful and know that “GOD is continuing to control this ride” as Lisa said. Though it is reality, I never like to hear the timeline of anyone once they reach the hospice stage, because I know that GOD will have the final decision of Kade’s time here on Earth as he does for us all.
In closing, I ask all Family and Friends of Mike and I and others that have joined us on this journey since Mike’s diagnosis to please take a moment and please lift Kade, his family and all that know him up in your prayers today and everyday. As you have witnessed, the power of prayer does work and continues to be working in our lives.
I hate that Cancer is what brought us to know Kade and his family, but I am also thankful to have such wonderful people to share this journey with us as we have shared their journey with them.
I thank you all for every prayer, message, phone call, email and all other ways of communication that you use – We greatly appreciate it beyond belief and remain blessed to have you in our lives.
Wednesday, May 4, 2011
“A mother is a person who seeing there are only four pieces of pie for five people, promptly announces she never did care for pie - Tenneva Jordan”
I searched for the “perfect” Mother’s Day tribute quote and as I came across this one, it so reminded me of my own mother and reminded me of many mothers that I have as family or friends.
Growing up in a single parent home, my mother was all I had and all I knew. When I was hungry she made me a hot meal. When the car broke down she was the one to repair it. When I hurt myself she was the one with the loving touch that only a mother could provide to make any bruise or cut feel better within seconds. My mother was a true “Jack of ALL Trades”. She was a mother, a father and a friend. A mother cannot be completely defined. I myself can only attach the word extraordinary to all the mothers that I know including the one of my own.
If you are a person to have both a mother and father in your household and still to this day, cherish those relationships with each parent. My mother was all I knew growing up and was all I had. She made several sacrifices for me growing up, some that I am aware of and MANY that I never knew until I got older and understood. I do not know of any mother that does not make daily sacrifices for the ones they love. It is a trait that does not come with a handbook, no instructions it happens the minute that a mother hold’s that newborn baby in their arms.
I wanted to take this time to thank you all, my mother and all mothers that are reading this. Once you enter Motherhood you surely cannot turn back, and from all of us “children”, we are grateful!!
This Mother’s Day as hard as it may be, because you are in the mindset of helping all around you, please take time for yourself. If it’s a hot bath, a massage or even indulging in a cup of sweet tea on the back porch while reading your favorite book please make it happen – YOU deserve it!
Wishing You ALL a Wonderful Mother’s Day with loved ones.
Monday, May 2, 2011
It is easy to take liberty for granted, when you have never had it taken from you - Author unknown"
Today is a TRUELY Victorious Day For America -- A HUGE Day -- Praise GOD For Closure on A Horrific LONG Chapter in American History!
I am not a political person at all. In fact I flip over CNN and all the news channels to catch up on the latest Real Housewife drama or The Jersey Shore season finale. It makes me so sad to watch all the damage tat is going on in the world today. It is a lot easier to escape the “reality” of what the world is going through as soon as I am blinded by the big blonde hair and spray tans of my “Trash-ality” shows.
The fact of the matter is that there are a lot of you – A lot of my family, friends and family and friends of loved ones. What you men and women are doing is wonderful and I am thankful for you ALL! You set aside your own personal life to become “One Nation Under GOD” and do what ever is necessary to our Country on guard and safe.
It is obvious that there is no draft in place, so therefore all of you are choosing unselfishly to Fight for Our country and stay on call at any moment to fly across country to stand battle and fight for all of us here in The United States who are have become quite accustomed to our freedom.
I thank YOU ALL that sacrifice YOUR time with loved ones so that we are able to continue spend the time with ours Everyday – and too many times we take those days for granted.
In closing, Thank You from the bottom of ALL of My Family and Friends hearts. THANK YOU SO MUCH TO ALL OF YOU SERVICE MEN AND WOMEN --- MY FRIENDS.
Sunday, May 1, 2011
"The family. We were a strange little band of characters trudging through life sharing diseases and toothpaste, coveting one another's desserts, hiding shampoo, borrowing money, locking each other out of our rooms, inflicting pain and kissing to heal it in the same instant, loving, laughing, defending, and trying to figure out the common thread that bound us all together - Erma Bombeck"
Today Grandpa Would Have Been 85 -- I Wrote This blog in 2009 The Year Grandpa Passed -- Miss Him Daily - What A Hero in Pearl Harbor & WWII Receiving a Purple Heart - What Tales He Had! He LOVED His Family & ALL His Friends UNCONDITIONALLY! Make the time for family and friends -- mend the relationships that are severed today for you never know when you get that hug again. Mike and I are So truly blessed for all the family we have been graced with --- GOD is good!
"Last night I cried...I remembered Grandpa's Birthday would be tomorrow...or it would have been his birthday...but wait - it still is his birthday...right? Either way I remembered this year I couldn't send him a card --
Every year -- since before I was able to buy my own cards, you know the ones that mom/dad pick out and you get to sign your name with big XOXO in your oh so proud to show off 2nd grade cursive... Well every year no matter my age, I always bought those little fuzzy 'From Granddaughter to Grandpa' cards -- it was just what we did -- He loved them just as much as I enjoyed shopping for the perfect one...Usually fuzzy bear with a hint of glitter with some cheesy very adolescent poem - Grandma told me tonight he has saved everyone.
Today my Grandfather has been past for 3 months -- I haven't been to his gravesite since the funeral nor has my Grandma. Last night I cried realizing that it was his birthday and I wasn't going to send a card. Mike suggested that we go to the gravesite and visit. I had not thought of that - I've honestly never had a person so close that I have lost and have never visited a gravesite of a loved one - so I was anxious, nervous and excited. I called Grandma right away to see if she'd be interested and she was -- I was happy!
Picked Grandma up -- and if you know me, you know I NEVER get anywhere on time -- I really try, but it doesn't happen. I pull up and Grandma is sitting in the garage -- smoking her ciggarette nervously and reminds me that she is set in her ways and waiting has always raised her blood pressure and makes her nervous. I immediatly got nervous, but knew in my heart, she was nervous too -- it was her first time to visit Grandpa...her best friend..."A wonderful husband" as she refers to him...she has not been back since the day of his service.
We hop in the truck and head out -- I was so nervous -- I grew up in Deer Park and could not even remember where the funeral home was -- Grandma reminded me and assured that I was driving too close and not completly stopping at the stop signs. HA! Nerves were in the air -- but I understand -- You are with someone for 59 years and one day no more.
We pulled in the cemetary -- I was for sure I knew where he was -- she wasn't -- we were both wrong. (he has'nt gotten a headstone yet) As we walked around, all of a sudden there was a wind...a calm wind and Grandma said "that's it"... "I remember seeing that dented headstone when we came last time...we stopped, paused and absorbed the precense around us and it felt right -- I cried, Grandma hugged me and we stayed and talked memories and the FABULOUS life my Grandfather led. It was good -- I had peace and I feel Grandma did too."