Tuesday, November 6, 2012

emotionally drained- update on mom

This post is really just to get things off my chest. I try to stay strong, do my best to get through these long days, but today it's hitting me. I hate cancer. I hate what I see it doing to my mom. I left work today to be with her because she was too tired to eat. I made her soup and re-filled her drink. As she sat up she gasped for air. She is having trouble breathing for some reason. She can't take deep breaths without sounding like she is hyperventilating. She has a chemo appointment tomorrow, so they are going to ask about that then. Due to Hurricane Sandy her immune system check up was cancelled but they will check it in the morning. I want to know why that's happening, why she can't breathe right. It's really unbearable to hear and see. My mom is strong, she is young, but this stupid cancer is taking it's toll. This is not her. I wanted to just sit there and talk to her- keep her company for awhile, but I had to run to get Addison. My life is running around. From work to photography to Addison, I barely have time for myself. I do my best to call my mom daily, but that's all I can do. Thankfully, my dad left work early and got there as I was leaving. She has nobody all day long, all week. She needs company, and at this point she really needs somebody there for her to cook her meals. It's not all the time that she feels this bad, some days are great, but lately there are more down times. 

Mom during second chemo

Taking it back a little-

A few weeks after my moms first chemo she began losing her hair. For women especially this side effect can be tough. I knew it would be very hard on my mom. She had a friend come over and shave her head one evening. I sat home, waiting to hear from my parents that it was done and to hear how my mom was doing with it. I logged onto FB and saw one of my moms good friends had posted this photo:

Not Alone

She had shaved her head and posted it for all to see, just to tell my mom she is NOT alone. I broke down into tears. This was the nicest thing I have ever seen first hand, somebody did this for MY mom. Truly touching and remarkable. There are no other words. Her friends have been there for her every step, and we couldn't have made it this far without them, that I'm sure. Seeing that gave my mom the strength to face this hurdle straight on. Not long after her head was shaved she posted this:

With the caption:
"This is one of the most difficult photos I will ever post, but if I'm not going to let NH Lymphoma cancer beat me, then I can't hide from it, either. It's your support that has brought me this far. I love all of you SO much!!!!! ♥ (09-26-12)"

The caring and support has been absolutely amazing. We put together a "card shower" for everyone to send cards on the same day to get there before a round of chemo as a booster. She ended up receiving over 160 cards, last time she had counted. I believe others were still trickling in. How amazing is that? Included in them were sticky notes of positive and motivational words. My plan is to make a board collage of them and place them around her house. 

There are also a couple fundraisers in place. A restaurant is donating a percentage of sales the Tuesday after Thanksgiving, a Tastefully Simple, Mary Kay, and Scentsy consultant are donating percentages of their sales from 'benefit parties' to her, and we have set up a donation site as well. With everything they are going through the last thing they should worry over is money to pay the medical bills. I want her to stay focused on her health and well being. I have already been able to pay multiple bills from the donations. What a community we have. So many people out there that truly care!

Please, keep her in your prayers. This is such an emotional roller coaster. Good days are great, but the bad days bring you to reality and fear. When I actually have time to think to myself. I ask WHY? Is this really happening? I want my mom back healthy and normal. I HATE this. It's not fair. It's one of those feelings where you want to kick and scream, but it gets you nowhere. I want to wake up from this nightmare. I hate that she has to go through this. 

Her fourth chemo is tomorrow. They will also check soon to see if the chemo is working. Those results are a very big deal and I'm just praying it comes back with the best possible news. I'm ready for her to win this battle. One step at a time... 

Monday, November 5, 2012

Addison 13 months

Addison is changing so much every day and getting smart. Smart enough to throw temper tantrums, which I was under the belief they didn't start until two. Nope, she definitely throws herself on the floor mad when I won't let her do something 'fun'... you know like hit my panic button on my car keys over and over (I'm sure my neighbors love hearing that daily), pull the dogs hair, hold onto her dirty diaper, or put her hands in the toilet. Mommy is pretty mean these days. 
It's a whirlwind between doing normal household duties and cleaning up after the 24/7 tornado that runs through the house. Well, she doesn't run quite yet... but she is getting the hang of walking...
She loves to talk. And in my opinion, she's very good. She has quite a vocabulary. Thinking this will fun when she learns the word no, and how to use it. She really is a ton of fun though. Her little personality is amazing. She will fake laugh if everyone is laughing, or fake cough if she hears someone (a little embarrassing during a quiet setting like the doctors office). She says Hiiii and Bye bye to every single person in the stores. She had about 10 random people giggling at her and all saying Hi in the Christmas Tree Store the other day, it was hilarious. She will jump on me and Dada trying to tackle us. She loves her books and animal noises. 
Getting photos of her has been near impossible. At other peoples sessions the moms are there to wrangle the kids. When it's just me and her... I can just forget trying to get a decent photo. So all of them have been iPhones lately. I'm going to ahem 'try' some Christmas photos, but I'm not holding my breath. 
Teeth seem to be a constant issue. She's cutting her 12th, and I'm pretty sure there are more molars slowly coming down. Lots of sleepless nights, but nothing new there!! Girl still doesn't sleep throughout the night. Something I've gotten used to by now. Waking up once for a bottle is an awesome night, I don't mind that. But crying every hour is no fun. 
Speaking of bottles. It's about that time. I'm so not ready to take them. Doctor said by 15-18 months, I'm probably going to be pushing 15 months. They are the one thing that settles her down. She has never taken a pacifier so her bottles work in that way. She has three a day and one at night. She doesn't linger with them, she usually drinks them pretty fast. So I'm not worried about it messing up her teeth yet. Just don't know how and when I'm going to make the switch... and lose a little sanity.
She's becoming such a little toddler now. Makes me slightly sad, but excited for all the fun to come. 
Halloween was already a blast. She was saying "trik tet" by the time we were headed home. She just loved trick or treating with her cousins, even though she really had no idea what was going on I saw a glimpse of what life is now. I realized how special these little moments are. I soaked it up. It's just going to get better...
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