I continue to think about this subject. Unforgiveness is one of the major hindrances that can hinder your healing. Listen to what Jesus says in Mark 11:25-26. "And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him and [let it drop](leave it, let it go), in order that your Father who is in heaven may also forgive you your [own] failings and shortcomings and let them drop. But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your failings and shortcomings." Happy New Year 2011, I still think this an important message! A quote by Author: Tami Hoag 2007... What purpose does it serve to hold that anger? What good does it do? Hatred is like taking poison and expecting the other person to die of it."

An Opinion... Isn't it amazing that almost everyone has an opinion to offer about the bible (as well as other subjects), and yet so few have studied it (or the subject)? R. C. Sproul, If only one would read before speaking, they would not look so foolish. Yet, I don't want to get in anyone's face... so I keep dropping hints. Does it help? I hope so...)

Friday, October 29, 2010

10/28/10 Doctor Appointment

How do I begin this post?  I am trying to keep an open mind, understanding that mistakes can be made.  But, I am so tired of waiting for a definate diagnosis.

With no farm equipment on the country roads, we arrived early at the hospital.   I spent the next three hours drinking a Berry Smoothie contrast drink and waiting for my time in the CT scan.  When called to have the test administered, I had forgotten that there would be an IV with a chemical that temporarily makes your body feel flushed (warm).  This IV makes you feel as if you have wet your pants!  Don't panic, it just feels that way. 

After finishing the scan, I passed by the wonderful smells of the cafe and coffee kiosk wishing I could take the time to stop.  Arrived at the doctor office, waiting for my son to arrive as well as the doctor to become available, the nurse came out to talk to me.  I was advised that the third opinion report from John Hopkins Cancer Center(for the biopsy on 09/30) had not arrived!  My appointment was rescheduled for next week when the report and scan reports should be in.  My mind went numb, and while I normally would question this, get upset over the additional delay and/or verbal, I didn't.  I just accepted the new appointment and left the office.  Honestly, I don't know what happened to me.  My thought process just shut down!

I called my son who just arrived in the parking lot, told him he may as well turn around and go home to sleep.  He works grave shift right now.  I looked at my sister and asked her if my family would find out a definate diagnosis during my autopsy.  All of this time "waiting" for a diagnosis delays treatment!  Anyway, my sister took over and left a message for my son and was able to get my daughter (in California) on the phone.  Long distance, she made a phone call to my oncologist office and was able to find out more information. 

Long story short, unknown why... the request for third opinion on my 09/30 biopsy had just been received by John Hopkins Cancer Center on Friday, 10/22.  My oncologist office is checking into this, and requested the report be back by this coming Tuesday.  I have another appointment Wednesday, 11/03.

In the meantime, I have been having the strangest sensation in my abdomen.  The stent is still in my ureter passage, anchoring on each side (bladder and kidney).  My bladder feels like it is trying to expel something, a shivering of the bladder every so often.  Not painful, just weird!  Thursday, 11/04, this stent will be removed. 

After all of this, Gloria and I found a place to enjoy lunch.  Of course when you are hungry, eating too fast and too much is not good.  The drive back to Royal City seemed longer than the normal one and one/half hours.  By the time we started driving home on a full stomach, the contrast drink started messing with my digestion.  Also, I cannot take my diabetic medicine for 48 hours after the CT scan as it doesn't interact well with Metformin.  So, my blood sugar was reaching higher levels.  Between all of that, the rain, lack of information, my mind was in a fog. 

I had a talk with myself this morning, and decided that nothing works perfectly. So, I need to get over this set back and remember that today was given to me for a reason.  Use the day wisely!
I am going to explain what a CT (Computed tomography) scan is because there have been several inquiries about this.  Alternative name for this test is CAT (Computed axial tomography) scan.

 Excerpt from

In this procedure,a thin X-ray beam is rotated around the area of the body to be visualized.

"A computed tomography (CT) scan is an imaging method that uses x-rays to create cross-sectional pictures of the body... Certain exams require a special dye, called contrast, to be delivered into the body before the test starts... Contrast can highlight specific areas inside the body, which creates a clearer image...
Contrast can be given several ways, and depends on the type of CT being may be delivered through a vein (IV) in your hand or forearm.

It may be given through the rectum using an enema.
You might drink the contrast before your scan. When you actually drink the contrast depends on the type of exam being done. The contrast liquid may taste chalky, although some are flavored to make it taste a little better. The contrast eventually passes out of your body through your stools.  If contrast is used, you may also be asked not to eat or drink anything for 4-6 hours before the test.
Contrast given through an IV may cause a slight burning sensation, a metallic taste in the mouth, and a warm flushing of the body. These sensations are normal and usually go away within a few seconds.

The most common type of contrast given into a vein contains iodine. If a person with an iodine allergy is given this type of contrast, sneezing, vomiting, itching, or hives may occur.
The kidneys help filter the iodine out of the body. Therefore, those with kidney disease or diabetes should receive plenty of fluids after the test, and be closely monitored for kidney problems.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Making a list, checking it twice...

Finding something to keep my mind occupied when not feeling well (or supposed to be resting) is my next goal (task).  Focus on a goal has been one of the things that keeps me going during hard times.  I have plenty of physically active projects, now I am making a list of inactive things to accomplish. 

I am just beginning this journey with cancer, then add in my high blood pressure, SVT, diabetes, high cholesterol, etc.  What do you have now, but a recipe for times I will have to take a break from physically challenging tasks.  I don't like to be told to stay down, so I fight it.  In the end, pushing myself has begun to hurt and prove my loved one's right and me wrong.  Oh gosh... another time I am admitting being wrong!  It is not my intention to make fun of myself... just have to laugh at this discovery of mine or I will cry.  I am afraid that this newly discovered truth about myself  is about to become a habit. 

During this past week or so, I have had more down time.  While "resting" my mind goes like a movie projector (dates me doesn't it... young people probably don't know what a projector is) and doesn't want to stop.  I review what I should be doing; projects not completed; health issues that need addressed; whine to myself about why I can't get up on the storeage shed roof and pound nails into the roofing that is flying away, harvest apples from the tree, pull weeds, set up my sewing area, etc.

Monday I received a call from the oncologist's office, comfirming the time, date, location and instructions for the PET/CT scan.  Thursday,before my oncologist appointment, will begin early.  I'll have to leave Royal City by 5:30 a.m. and arrive early at the hospital to obtain my contrast drink.  The next two hours will begin my yummy drink schedule.  My goal is to shut my eyes and imagine myself drinking a nice, hot coffee that is laced with cream, caramel flavoring... mmmmm.  After this, I will take a half hour (or  more) rest in the donut hole (CT machine).  What an imagination... I am visualizing coffee and donuts to keep me going until I can eat.  Stop... that is not going to happen soon, as I have another appointment to keep as soon as I finish the CT.  The worst part is that I have to pass the hospital cafe and coffee kiosk on the way to my oncologist office.

Prayers for this appointment, as I am hoping to receive definate answers to my questions.  The doctor's educated guess was good to receive, but I really want to know what "is" going on with me.
The power of prayer is not the result of the person praying. Rather, the power resides in the God who is being prayed to. 1 John 5:14-15 tells us, "This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us - whatever we ask - we know that we have what we asked of him." No matter the person praying, the passion behind the prayer, or the purpose of the prayer - God answers prayers that are in agreement with His will. His answers are not always yes, but are always in our best interest. When our desires line up with His will, we will come to understand that in time. When we pray passionately and purposefully, according to God's will, God responds powerfully!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Coming up on another week...

After my trip back to Royal City on Friday, I felt puny (weak, aches, dull pain) and have had bright red urine.  It seems that everytime I bounce around, or do anything mildly strenous the ureter stent bothers me.  Saturday morning I called the doctor.  Of course he was out of his office, but called me back right away.  His answer, "to be expected..."  I guess that is why he prescribed Vicodin.  I had not been taking the prescription as it makes me alert, ready to go, go, go!  So, I am trying to remain inactive and drink more water which is helping to flush out the blood and keep my urine moderately clear.  It feels like waddle, not walk, because of the liquid I  have consumed, and have frequency of urination.  So, a long nap is out of the question.

Kidney ureteral stent, one end in the bladder, up through the ureter, ending in the kidney.
Image from
 I have been reading up on ureteral stent removal.  That is coming up on November 4th.  First of all, let me say that I have read on more than one site the procedure for men and women are different.  Of course, due to the anatomy... but, many men get general anesthesia for the removal and women get a local if they are lucky?  Sorry, but I want something for the "moderately uncomfortable, but usually not intolerable" procedure!  I didn't even do natural child birth.  I like drugs that stop pain... call me a coward. 

Image from
The first part of this coming week, my oncologist is supposed to call me with an appointment to get a PET/CT scan.  I believe he wants the results back for our meeting on Thursday.  The PET/CT is a continuous full body scan, and both can be completed at the same time.  The PET takes pictures of the very small changes in the body metabolism.  This change is caused by growing abnormal cells.  The CT part pictures can let the doctor pinpoint the exact location, size and shape of cancer growths. No pain... and doesn't bother my claustrophobia!  If you notice, the tube is short in length. 

I am remembering my brother, Robert, today.  Birthdays come and go, but this is the first since his passing away recently.  Cancer is having an impact on our family this year...

Life, we can't choose what happens.  But, we can choose how we react to it. (author unknown)


Friday, October 22, 2010

Finally... some news

We (James, Gloria and myself) met with the oncologist today.  The doctor read the radiologist report from the hospital where I had the biopsy on the mass surrounding the renal artery.  While waiting for the third opinion from John Hopkins Hospital, he made an educated guess.  During this meeting, he emphasized that we may have to trash all of this discussion if the third opinion comes back differently than his interpretation.

After a phone call, we found that the John Hopkins report should (hopefully) be in on Wednesday.  I have an appointment for Thursday.  Plus, the doctor wants a new CT scan of my abdoman and chest. 

This doctor is one of the two recruited oncologists to the local hospital's new oncology unit.  He has worked with cancer for a while, and seems to know what he is talking about.

The doctor's educated guess:
1.  B-cell cancer.
2.  Follicular low grade (slow growing) lymphoma.
3.  Not curable.
4.  Not to be operated on.
5.  Can be treated with radiation to shrink mass (if the mass is interfering with body function).  As in my case, the mass outside the kidney surrounds the renal artery. 
6.  Most times chemo is not used, as it is not effective on slow growing cancer.  For chemo to be really effective, the cancer cells needs to be active cell proliferation (grow or multiply rapidly).
7.  Consider this a chronic disease that I will have to wait and watch on a regular basis.  Shrink when necessary, and may be able to use a light form of chemo in some situations.

Okay, my head is still spinning.  I am not going to know anything "for sure" until next Thursday.  But... if the above guess is accurate, the cancer will just become a part of me like my high blood pressure and diabetes.  I will deal with it on a daily basis, forever...

The vibration from the trip rattled the stent up through my bladder,ureter and kidney.  It is really sore tonight, so again I am going to miss seeing my grandson's football game (tomorrow) in person.  I did see him this week, hug him and tell him I have been hearing good things about him and his games.   His team was wearing pink socks, supporting breast cancer awareness.  Yes!  Thank goodness for his mom and dad recording the games. 

My grandaughter made a score in her soccer game on Sunday, which enabled them to win the game!  She is in California, too far for me to see the game. 

Enough for tonight, after the trip home I am sore, tired and just want to sleep away some hours to clear my head.   

Hope for some news... anything!

Wednesday, 10/20, after arriving in Royal City I received a phone call.  What a suprise, it was a call from the oncologist I had not seen since late in August.  Oops, think I already posted that.

Anyway... the doctor's assistant called back yesterday, Thursday, confirming an appointment for today at 11:15.  She said that their office now had the radiologist report from the biopsy of the mass which took place 09/30.  The assistant said that the doctor wanted to go over it in detail, and they were still tracking the opinion from John Hopkins.  Again I emphasized that I didn't want to offend the urologist... after all that stent is in a tender place and I don't want it to hurt when I go back in to have it removed.  It's okay, call me a coward!

So off we go to the Tri Cities again (don't know if I ever explained, but Tri Cities is made up of three closely associated towns, Kennewick, Pasco, Richland).

What I hope to find out today is: 
1. What is the mass on the renal artery?
2. How do we find out what is inside my kidney, and the actual location.
3. When can I get started on recovery, treatment, whatever it takes!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Ask me if I know anything yet?

I am still working on "patience" and it wears me out.  No, there is no information yet.  Okay, let's back up...

Went in Tuesday 10/19 to the hospital.  Because there was no farm equipment moving on the roads, I was able to arrive early.  My son, after working all night, met me there, as well as friends.  I had calls, comments, texts, well wishes and prayers sent to me.  Again, I wasn't really stressed, isn't that amazing!  Maybe not, after all I had prayed for courage.

The nurse came to get me about 9:00 a.m.  There was (already) a back up in the operating rooms, so I was not taken in until 12:30.  During the wait, I visited with my son back in pre-op.  He was so tired.  Back to the point, I was taken into the OR and next thing I knew it was about 2:00 p.m.  I thought maybe the news I was being told was mixed up because of the anesthesia I was still fighting. 

First, I asked if the reports had come in from John Hopkins.  Second, I asked about what I had just been through.  My son informed me that the third opinion report on the mass from John Hopkins was not back.  Then, he told me the doctor had to go right back into surgery, so I was not able to talk with him.

The doctor did meet with my son and told him that he did the procedure up the uretha, thru the bladder and into the kidney.  The mass showed in the renal pelvis area on the CT and MRI, but he could not locate it there.  My sister and I were shown the scan by two doctors.  Everyone is perplexed!  But, there was something located in the renal cortex, between the renal pyramids and renal capsule.  What do I have, the old "traveling miseries?" 

I called this morning and asked if the doctor had any news from John Hopkins yet, and what was my next step.  I was given an appointment for two weeks, so that I can have the stent removed from my uerter.  If the John Hopkins report comes in before the appointment, they will call. 

I drove back to Royal City with questions running around in my head.  You know, I never do anything easy or simple, always complicated!  After arriving at my sisters, I received a call from the oncologist I had met with in late August.  The doctor wanted an update on my progress with tests, diagnosis, etc.  I explained my delima.  To my suprise he is going to call the urologist to determine where my case is at.  There was some talk about referring me to Swedish Hospital in Seattle.  So now I wait for a call from the oncologist.  I don't want to upset anyone, but if there is another option to receiving a firm diagnosis a little quicker... I will take it!  I didn't call the oncologist to second guess the urologist.  It was a suprise to receive that call, and I hope that the urologist understands.

A little fun...

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

C o f f e e please...

I'm up... it is before 5:00 a.m., and I really could use a cup of coffee (preferably with cream and sugar) but that isn't going to happen this morning.  Nothing to eat or drink after midnight, and they weren't kidding.  The hospital called to remind me last night that nothing is defined as not anything, nothing at all.  The nurse even emphasized breath mints are not allowed!  Because I was bored, spent time polishing my fingernails.  For once I did a good job.   Wrong... was advised to remove fingernail polish.  The good news is that I don't have to fuss with getting ready this morning, no hair products, face makeup, lotions, etc.  I have never heard Allen complain of the restrictions.  Well, I guess I would worry if my brother-in-law worried about some of that stuff. 

Better get ready to go.  Promised a friend that I would be at the hospital bright and early with bells on and a smile.  I did forget that she said let's meet early for a cup of coffee before you go in.  Go for it friend... yeah right!

Thank you for your prayers, comments, and calls.  It means a lot to know I am cared for. 

Monday, October 18, 2010

Tomorrow, Tuesday, 10/19

Update... 6:12 p.m.   call from hospital, going to be at the hospital in the surgical area at 8:45 tomorrow, and will be taken back between 9:00 - 9:30 a.m.  Thank you for your prayers and caring! 

Right kidney biopsy tomorrow.  I am still waiting for the hospital to call with the time needed to check in. Gloria (sister) won't be able to go with me tomorrow, Allen has an appointment with his Oncologist tomorrow in Wenatchee (opposite direction from Royal City as I am going).  My plan is to get up really early tomorrow, pack up and drive over to the hospital in Richland. 

The doctor mentioned  my procedure would be second on his surgery list, so whatever time the nurse calls me with... it will be early.  Since the registration information listed me as an inpatient, guess I better take a change of clothes and a book.  

If this is like the last biopsy, it will be about ten days before I hear any results.  Again, I am working on patience.  The strange thing is that I am not all stressed out about this procedure either.  I am not taking any of this lightly, but neither am I on overload emotionally.  I feel that my prayers for comfort and courage are being answered.

Our weather is turning colder, 31 degrees this morning with frost on the cars.  Anyone can tell you that I am a person who does not like to wear shoes.  I am very comfortable in flip flops, using thick soles in the winter to walk on top the ice or snow.  But, with my diabetes, and the last year I have such cold feet.  Enclosing my feet in socks and shoes really bothers me (slight claustrophobia).  Guess I better get used to it, as I don't want to add getting sick with virus conditions on top of everything else.   This is just the beginning for my being on the winter roads.  Shoes are the better option for me just in case of a car break down on ice or snow. 

Tis easy enough to be pleasant, when life flows like a song.  But the man worthwhile in the one who will smile when everything goes wrong.  (by Ella Wheeler Wilcox)

Friday, October 15, 2010

Third opinion...

Off to the doctor office... 

Gloria is driving, she feels my attention isn't what it should be.  Maybe she's right...   Priorities set this morning, prayers first for a good day.  Second, a cup of  coffee without sweetener and cream... ugh!  That will cut my consumption down quickly!

Arrived at the doctor's office ready for a report from John Hopkins.  Blood pressure was a little high again 178/101, think it was being anxious that caused that bump. The opinion of my last biopsy had not arrived, and my doctor said that he thinks my mass outside the kidney is Non Hodgkin's Lymphoma.  But... that is why we are waiting for the third opinion to know for sure what we are dealing with.

Picture from
 The biopsy on my kidney is set for Tuesday, 10/19.   During the procedure there will be uretero renoscopy, ureteral stent, cyctoscopy, renal pelvic wash. 

After my appointment with the doctor, went to the hospital for pre-registration.  While there, found that I was to do labs, EKG, chest x-ray, pre-op nurse consult, etc.  It's a good thing my sister and I decided to stop running errands and go to the hospital before it got too late.  Not getting to the hospital for the tests today could have messed up my biopsy date. 

After running errands, it was getting dark outside.  Both Gloria (sister) and I don't deal with night driving really well.  We do okay, just not our favorite.  Anyway, a little slower coming back tonight and Allen was anxiously waiting for us.  No, that's not correct, he was anxiously awaiting the arrival of his steak and cheese sandwich.  And we thought the calls to us on the road were of concern for us, not relief for his hunger pains.

No over the counter pain medications these past three weeks, and I am feeling aches and pains.  Not bad, just there and tired.  As a result, guess I won't be driving back to Tri Cities tomorrow for my grandson's football game.  I feel bad about that, and I will miss being there.
I can not do great big things, but I can do small things in a great way. author unknown

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Morning coffee... a subject many of us can relate to...

My morning coffee...  Oh no!  It is being messed with again.  I had to give up sugar, as cancer feeds on sugar.  The only thing left was creamer.   While reading yesterday, I was reminded that dairy products (duh...which cream is) produces mucus.  I remembered reading that earlier, and forgot or blanked the information in my mind.  Mucus also feeds the cancer.  Uh oh, another project to check out.  Anyway, I had some unsweetened soy milk on hand.  It is just not the same as the real thing, but... Gloria said "you better read up on soy too."  Great!  Udder confusion, now what do I lace my coffee with in the morning?  And my preference is a diet cola first thing in the morning.  Can't do that anymore because of the aspartame.  You can't see them, but I have tears right now.

You are probably thinking that I have gone off the deep end with this research.  Prior to my diagnosis I thought that the information was interesting, but...  Now, I feel as if the data will increase my lifeline by an inch or two with each bit of knowledge (that I follow).  If just one person, besides myself,  benefits from these posts, it will have been worth it.

After reading other blogs, I find that my whining about "waiting" is petty.  I still don't like it, and am anxious to get tests, results, treatment, etc.  But, this topic goes onto my list "Patience, a work in progress."

Just received a call from my Urologist, my appointment tomorrow has been upped to noon.  Pray for the best results possible.  Remember, this is for the mass outside the kidney.  I am really hoping that there was room in the hospital schedule for me to do the biopsy on my kidney Tuesday, 10/19.  Can't remember if I explained the reason for another biopsy... oh yeah I did, because it may be a different type cancer. 

Instead of looking at the three hour round trip as difficult, I am going to look at it as a blessing.  I "get" to make that trip... I am healthy enough to make the trip, have a working car, money for gas, eyes to see the scenery,  a cell phone (Thanks Tina) to call for help if needed, etc.

It is the greatest of all mistakes to do nothing because you can do only a little.  Do what you can.
(by Sydney Smith)

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Remaining Focused...

Remaining focused on the positive issues can be difficult when having too much empty time to think.  Living at my sisters home, in a rural community, there isn't any extra curricular activity to keep one busy.  What activities I have been connected to is a three hour round trip away.  The yard is winding down as the temperature has been dropping into the 30's at night. Quilting takes some ability, which seems to be an abnormal strain right now. So... sitting at the computer researching is what I am doing.   

With all of the research I have been doing, my brain is somewhat overwhelmed. There is so much published information on cancer, kidney cancer, nutrients and supplements that are being used in cancer care, testimonies from cancer patients, financial, etc.  I have found encouragement and hope from many publications, and frank information from others.  In all, this education continues to be useful. 

I wish that I had much of this knowledge years ago.  I didn't.  Trying to get this message out to others has become important to me.  I do not write professionally, nor organized... but I am trying.

Friday is coming up soon, and I am really praying for the best biopsy report possible from John Hopkin's...

Flu Shots and Cancer Patients
Should You Get a Flu Shot If You Have Cancer?
By Lisa Fayed, Guide
Updated July 09, 2009 Health's Disease and Condition content is reviewed by our Medical Review Board
Excerpts from the above published article posted on new site, address upper right of blog.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Insurance appointment

Before I begin... have to report that I was working on crab apples again today.  Just doing enough for today's broccoli blend.  I washed, diced and put in my "new" blender.  This one really blends fast!  Using the old blender, I could get away with the top being off for a second... NOT this one.  Again, I spent time cleaning the kitchen, wall, inside the drawer, refrigerator, cupboards... you get the picture.  Yes, crab apple juice and pulp everywhere!  And all my sister could do is laugh at me.  Ugh...

Today was a meeting of the ladies sewing group I belong to, Chain of Heart's Friendship Group.  I had just driven to Richland for my doctor appointment yesterday (three hours round trip). I just didn't have it in me to drive over again today for sewing and my insurance appointment.  Maybe next month my life will have settled down a little, so that I can participate more.

Also, I have to drive over on Friday for another doctor appointment, as well as back on Saturday for my grandson's football game.  That road is beginning to get long... and my trips have just begun. 

Rescheduling my appointment has become an issue.  Either I am unavailable or my agent is, and I am trying not to run out of the "window" in which I can make changes to my insurance.

As mentioned in another post,  research the type of health insurance you have. I did not ask enough questions about Medicare Advantage and Medicare Supplemental.  That mistake is going to cost me a lot of money until my contract expires.  An important question to ask... whether or not there is a negiotiated fee adjustment between your plan and the medical facility. This new insurance plan will not begin until January 1st.  Money is not the only issue, but some doctors will not accept new patients with Medicare Advantage. 

As soon as most of the medical invoices, and explanation of benefits have been gathered, I am going to make an appointment with each doctor/hospital.  The way the economy is today, it seems to me that if I go into the finance office and ask for a payment schedule, they would work with me.  Okay... I am really hoping that my requests will not be denied.  I don't think that a yard sale is going to pay off these bills. 

Thank God for what you have, TRUST GOD for what you need. (Author unknown)

Monday, October 11, 2010

Monday, 10/11, my doctor's appointment...

This past weekend seemed long.  As well as visiting with family, I spent a great amount of time sleeping.  Since I was anxious for this doctor's appointment, taking naps seemed good for me to pass the time.  It was difficult to fall asleep with my brain not wanting to shut down, but somehow I managed it.   Getting up this morning to dress for the trip, my thoughts again turned to prayer.   I have been asking not only for healing, but peace of mind, positive attitude, and thankful for whatever blessings I can find in the silver lining of my cloud.  

The doctor was in a very personable mood this morning, which relaxed me right off the bat.  It was nice to have my son James, his wife BeeAnna and my sister Gloria in the room with me today.  Also, the phone calls, text messages and emails wishing me well were comforting to receive.

Note the picture on the left.  In the space within the renal artery, vein, right kidney area is a mass.

The biopsy report stated that I have Lymphoma in the mass that is entwined with a lymph node and the arteries in the renal area.  The doctor is going to ask John Hopkins for a third opinion regarding this mass.  Surgery to remove the mass from this location is too risky.  At this point I do not know what stage my cancer is in, just that it is inoperable.  Correction:  Surgery could be performed, but....  So, once the third opinion is in, I will begin appointments with an Oncologist where radiation and chemotherapy will be addressed.  After thinking about my appointment last night, Gloria and I realized that  the doctor did not say whether the Lymphoma was Hodgkin's or Non Hodgkin's.  If I have to have cancer... I left today with good feelings about the type of cancer I "may" have (Non Hodgkin's Lymphoma), and that good results are possible with radiation and/or chemotherapy alone.  I will find out Friday, 10/15 what John Hopkins has to say. 

To my surprise, the mass within my kidney is being addressed again.  It seems that this could possibly be another form of cancer.  A biopsy is being ordered for the kidney itself.  The target date for that procedure is 10/19.  My doctor explained that there were approximately three options for this biopsy.  Those options range from minimally invasive to surgery.   Plan A is to go up through the uretha, bladder, ureters, and into the kidney to obtain a sample for biopsy. 

I want to clarify my being anxious is not the same as fear.  More, it is a feeling of impatience... just get this done!  My personality looks ahead and plans life, while trying to have some flexibility.  It has never been my strong point to plan for today (only) and not have something to look forward to.  This is another learning experience for me.  I guess I look at anticipation like waiting for a surprise birthday party, and think you have been forgotten.  Or, if you know about the party, wondering if anyone will show up.  My thoughts are "let's just get this show on the road."

What was my blessing you may ask... it was there in the silver lining of my cloud.  I felt at peace, not afraid, I had support with me, and the type of cancer (hopfully Non Hodgkin's Lymphoma) is the least serious of all the types that I could have.  No, it's not good to have any type of cancer.  But, having Lymphoma is the better option.  I am continuing to pray for the mass in my kidney to be of the same type, all being treatable with some good success. 

Now I am reading on T cells, B cells, slow growing vs aggressive cancer and how it all responds to treatments.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Biopsy news on Monday 10/11

 This was such an enjoyable day, not too long before I found out my social life was to change to waiting rooms, doctor offices, tests, etc. 

This has been like a whirlwind in one aspect, and slow motion too.  The appointments come slower than we anticipated.  Sometimes it would be nice to scream "I need to know... something!"  A day seems forever, let alone have the time stretch into weeks.  As you can see, the new me (with patience) is still a work in progress.

Maybe once I get some information, sleep will come easier.  As for discomfort, just what I am used to in that area.  Before the CT scan, thought I was feeling normal aches.  When the pain increased, blamed it on my working in the yard too much.  Since I have stopped most of the labor type work, the pain is at a normal level.  I am not sitting at the sewing machine now, that helps too.  A good thing, as I am still confused on what I can take (if anything) besides Tylenol for relief. 

Monday, 10/11 is a big day for me.  Finally, I am going to get some news about this cancer.  I have read so much on cancer, yet it doesn't feel as if the surface has been scratched.  We have company coming this weekend, so think a research break is in order.  Needing to be emotionally prepared for Monday's appointment, I will spend the weekend enjoying my neice and her family, reading, and most important... praying. 

The past couple of days has been filled with picking and processing crab apples from my sisters tree.  Diligently a rounded colander of apples was washed, and because they are small thought I could put them in the blender whole.  While blending, the smell of electrical wire burning filled the air.  Ugh... what now!  As I started to alert Gloria... realized it was the blender that was smoking.  I was wrong (Did I admit that?  There is hope for me.)... small or not, the apples had to be cut into pieces.  After a trip to the neighboring town's Walmart, we have a new blender.

   (In all fairness I had help burning up the blender.   Prior to my using it, Gloria had mixed paper mache in it!  In our family, when one doesn't have the proper equipment, we improvise!)

The finished product has been frozen in portions that will blend into my broccoli drink.  Don't know about you, but making a mess is what I do best.  After one large colander full, the mess it created and time to clean it up... that project is on hold until the weekend is over too.  In the end, the project will be well worth the effort.

Have a good weekend! 
I will be back online after my doctor appointment on Monday, 10/11 at 9:45 a.m.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Are you overwhelmed with the information I have found?

Whenever my sister Gloria, or I, find more information relating to my health issues, we read all we can. It is impossible to put all of the information located on this blog. However, I do note at least one supporting site so that if your interest is peaking, you can research too.
This journey into research has really opened my eyes. There is not "one" item, medication, or treatment that can cure my cancer, diabetes, blood pressure issue, SVT, Asthma, etc. The combination of doctor, treatment, medication, what I do or do not consume, physical exercise, and more is what I am finding necessary to my survival.

Remember the story about what came first, the chicken or the egg? Well, in my case what came first... the cancer triggering other issues, or my other issues triggering the cancer? So, I have to look at the whole person and try to find what I can do for my entire self.

After locating some additional information, I plan to put a simple chart together on how to incorporate most/all of the items within ones daily diet and routine. It doesn't have to be difficult! Trust me, I have become otherwise occupied and time is a protected commodity. I have learned by blending my broccoli drink,  several items can be used. Still playing with my drink, I will probably add more to the recipe at a later date. At one time, I thought I was too busy to read about this type of information. At the present time I do not have a choice, it is necessary to change my lifestyle. This alteration in daily living should have started years ago. It didn't. Now, I am fighting to save whatever I have of the rest of my life.

If the initial doctor is correct, and I have to have one kidney removed, the remaining one will have to be treated with kindness. One of the only ways I can think of to do that is to change what I consume! Anyone who is reading this can absorb some/all of this information, make some lifestyle changes/commitments and live a healthier life. Also, what a gift you can give to someone you love, information.

 Pain...On another issue, I have been asked about pain. After researching this topic too, I have found that I am common with little pain to report .  Is that good? Not really,  if I had more discomfort, the health issue would have been addressed sooner. Little pain in the early stages is just one more reason why kidney cancer is normally not detected until it is in Stage 3 or four. Of course, other reasons for late detection are in my stand-alone page, Do Not Ignore.

If I do too much physical activity (yard work, move furniture, clean out a garage) then I have been cramping in the kidney area. It will ache, and I have even had my BP and glucose numbers fall thru the bottom during this time. The falling numbers have a disastrous effect on me. So, I have learned to read the signs and back off.

Okay, I will clarify for my son and daughter because they are probably shaking their heads right now. I try to remember that I need to back off what I am doing when I feel discomfort. I just forget that it is okay to pamper myself now. Before cancer, I had always pushed myself to complete whatever project was started. I admit it... I have always been a person with a long "to do" list and not enough hours in the day. Now, I have to do more than "try" to back off when I hurt. It is sooooooo hard for me to be laid back! I can see Tina and James still shaking their heads... honest, I am going to try and do better. 

There will be two places to look for research information. Articles posted will be in the archives, and other information in the stand-alone pages. When I complete a chart of nutrients, foods, amounts, etc., it will be on a new stand-alone page.

Okay, now I am done for the day. 

Tuesday, October 5, 2010


This post on sleep is now on
Click on address upper right of blog.

Have you been checking my stand alone pages?

Broccoli and fruit juice  ~
Broccoli and vegetable juice . . .

Like garlic, broccoli is one of todays miracle foods. A member of the brassica family, broccoli is high in antioxidant vitamins beta-carotene, vitamin C, vitamin E and rich in folate. It also contains iron and potassium. Most important, broccoli is one of the best sources of glucosinolates which are proven to reduce cancer, especially lung and colon cancer.

 There are so many articles on this subject. It is amazing what changes in our lifestyle can produce. It is easy for me to make this change.  Since being diagnosed with cancer, I have been working at reducing my diet cola (aspartame) consumption.  If the broccoli juice is cold, it makes a good substitute for a drink.  Don't juice it, blend it and get benefits from the entire vegetable.  Just to whet your appetite, there are a couple of articles listed below.

 From the article ~ Now even scientists say broccoli can cure cancer, not just prevent it.
"The FDA has long frowned upon anyone claiming that vegetables or superfoods cure cancer. It’s been okay to say they "prevent" cancer, but a cure is apparently reserved only for the realm of drugs, surgery, chemotherapy and radiation (none of which actually cure anything, in reality). That’s why this article is so interesting: it claims that compounds from broccoli could be used in a cure for cancer. And it’s not just broccoli, it’s other foods, too: cabbage, mustard greens, turnips and more…"
by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger, editor Natural News

 From the article ~ Diet and Cancer Prevention: New Evidence for the Protective Effects of Fruits and Veggies."Today, researchers present new data that demonstrate how diets full of raw vegetables — particularly broccoli sprouts — and black raspberries could prevent or slow the growth of some common forms of cancer…"

Monday, October 4, 2010

Biopsy over... now waiting for results

Picture courtesy of Jr.  As Tina said... he is so not going to be allowed in next time with a camera... ha ha.  Like the socks, a gift from Victoria.

Thursday, 09/30 there was a wait even in the hospital. The doctor was running late due to the procedure that was completed prior to mine. Actually I didn’t mind the wait, as I knew if the doctor was willing to take extra care and time with that person, he would with me too.

I want to thank everyone who came to the hospital with me. It was so nice to have family and friends there. Allen felt it strange to be a visitor in the waiting room this time, instead of his usual patient status. Also, I want to thank all of those, near and far, who prayed for this biopsy to come to a positive conclusion. It did, and I know it was because of all of the prayers covering the procedure, the doctor and myself. While waiting for the doctor to come, I spent the time praying and asking for the Lord to be in the room with the doctor and myself during this procedure.

Finally, the doctor came into the room as asked if I was ready for this biopsy to begin... did I have a choice?  I told him "yes" and was glad to begin. Was I afraid? No, I was at peace with everything and that was nice! During the procedure I was told to breathe deep, hold, exhale deep, hold, several times. Instead of being concerned with what was going on, and the possibilities of what could happen, my mind worried over whether or not I was breathing correctly! I asked myself if I was supposed to be taking those breaths in through my nose or mouth. Oh my... what if I am doing it wrong, should I ask for clarification, should I alternate nose and mouth responses? I still can’t believe that I spent my time worrying over that!

Everything went smooth. I wasn’t uncomfortable during the biopsy, and left the hospital within a short while.  The doctor spoke briefly to me afterwards, and he had a lilt to his voice he did not have before. 

I took advantage of the rest of the weekend with my family. We all went to my grandson’s football game (Colt’s won), a high school game where Brandon’s cousin played (they won). It was nice to eat out with both of my children at the same time, lots of visiting with family, a movie and pedicure with Tina. All of this splurging was time being taken advantage of, as next time the visiting will be with my being confined to bed. Also, similar to an old story... it was funded by James and BeeAnna buying a meal out, and Tina using the birthday money I gave her to buy my movie, pedicure, etc. I want to thank my friend and ex-husband, Jr., for bringing Tina home for this time.

Now, I am back in Royal City and extremely tired. The exhaustion is not only from anticipation, but the procedure itself. Then, all of the running around trying to live each day to its fullest while my blood sugar was "high." After the biopsy I was told not to take my diabetic medication, Metformin, until after 3:45 p.m. Saturday. Going from Thursday until Saturday night was a long time.

Monday 10/4
I called the doctor’s office today, no results yet. I will probably have to wait until my appointment with Dr. Chavla on the 11th.