That is the affirmation I keep repeating.Â I always use visualization as part of my healing, but I constantly forget about the power of affirmations.Â I know, it sounds creepy and new-agey, but it seems to be fairly common in the cancer community. So, when I’m taking a shower, laying in bed, playing with the dogs, driving around town (you get the idea!), I repeat these three phrases to myself.Â It’s the answer I prefer when I ask myself what lies ahead…Like one of my favorite songs, I’m always wondering what will I be, who will I love, what awaits me in coming years?Â The answer of course is “que serÃ¡, serÃ¡”! If you haven’t heard the song, you need to listen to it…it’s a classic!Â http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xZbKHDPPrrc.Â “Whatever will be, will be”; this phrase couples perfectly with my basic motto of going with the flow.Â However, I thought I better specify a little bit more clearly how I perceive the years ahead:Â I will recover fully, I will stay in remission, and I will live a normal life.Â There is absolutely something to be said about the power of positive thinking.Â It’s certainly more fun than worrying all the time (but don’t think you’re getting off easy—I’m sure there will be future posts where the worrying comes back to pay me a visit, and I pass it right on to you to relieve myself of its burden)!
But no worrying on this post.Â First, here’s a little youtube video to entertain you.Â This is what Jameson is capable of…herding is in his blood.Â Unfortunately for him, there are no sheep around these parts, so he settles for herding his humans which certainly proves difficult because they are so stubborn.Â Although he has yet to have the chance to implement his skills, I have no doubt he would take to the fields as Guinness takes to water….guess that doesn’t make much sense if you don’t know that Guinness absolutely loves water!!Â Anyway, check this out.Â I think you’ll really enjoy it: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D2FX9rviEhw…amazing, isn’t it?Â Now, with a little work, Jameson would be excellent at that!Â We actually have a gift certificate to take him and Guinny out to a farm here in VA so they can practice herding.Â We were going to redeem it last year, but then I went and ruined everything, so hopefully we can arrange it for this year instead!
OK, before I tell you more about my appointment with the nurse practitioner last week, you have to hear my new favorite song…I drove around all week last week putting it on repeat…I love the beat, and it’s lotsa fun to sing along to.Â Let me know what you think:Â TgeWbhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5v7Z3w.Â Catchy little tune, don’t you agree?Â Thanks for making me a copy, Katie!Â The whole CD is really good, but this one is by far my fave.Â Now you can feel like you were practically in the car with me as I drove around this week, because I played it over and over and over.Â :)Â Needless to say, I’ve been humming it too–it was like my soundtrack for this week.Â And now for things I found out at my appointment:Â I can have a glass of sangrÃa at your wedding, Paloma!!!!!Â When she told me that, I pushed a little further and said, “So, I can have a glass of wine with dinner now?”Â At least I tried.Â The answer was no.Â Well, poop on her for ruining my fun!Â hahahahaÂ just teasin’…I know it’s for my own good.Â I have to stay on Acyclovir (an anti-viral medication) until October, so maybe after i’m off of it, I will be more free to enjoy some wine and cider.Â Not that I drank a lot of it before, but you know how it is when you’re not allowed to have something…you want it all the more!
OK, continuing with the appointment, she said my white count still seems “putzy” (her words, not mine), but she’s not worried about it.Â It could be the Dapsone (an antibiotic) is suppressing them (and I will be off of the Dapsone on April 7th), it could be that I have a slower engraftment (here again I was confused because I thought I was already fully engrafted!)…I plan on asking my doc more about it in two weeks when I go back.Â When I asked her about secondary cancers, she said they usually don’t happen until many years later, the result of high-dose chemo and radiation…I don’t think too much is known about the iodine 131 treatment I had.Â In any case, it doesn’t happen until later and it typically happens in the form of a blood cancer.Â I was under the impression it could be any type of cancer…skin, breast, etc…again, I will mention it to my doctor to get more details.Â Hearing more about the possibility of a secondary cancer fifteen, twenty years down the road scared the crap out of me.Â I know once you’re a transplant patient, you must always be hyperaware of your body and how you feel, and you must deal with this for the entirety of your life, but I guess I didn’t realize the severity of the possible problems.Â When she told me that, I thought “Well, great!Â Because if I get another blood disorder, that’s it…I’m a goner!Â I already had a transplant…the only possible thing they could try on me is a research study, something about Laura’s T cells”…I don’t remember the details.Â Thinking about it now though, research constantly leads to new discoveries and treatments, and who knows where we’ll be in fifteen to twenty years?
To be honest, I hope I never need to reap the benefits of future research, because I would like to be carrying on with my normal life, you know, the one I envision in my affirmation.Â I forgot to add one phrase to the affirmation:Â ….and I will live a normal, facial hair-free life.Â :)Â Guess what?Â I shaved my eyebrows the other day with my nose-hair clipper.Â I’d been thinking about it, but I thought, well, there will be some stubble and it won’t look good, but actually there’s a big difference!!Â Ultimately, I will remove it with waxing/threading/sugaring, but that won’t be for a while.Â The nose hair clipper doesn’t leave marks or irritate my skin, and I look much better, thank goodness!!
It was actually quite the week.Â I shaved my giant eyebrow, went to see the nurse practitioner, picked up my bike, RODE my bike (I was breathing quite hard the whole way!), went to a movie (”I Love You Man”….hillllarrrious, by the way!), slept at Laura’s house, went to my young adult cancer group at Life with Cancer, worked on a photo album with Lori, and hung out with Ronnie, Kathy, Katie, Vlad and Klaus!!Â It was wonderful!!Â I hadn’t been to one of the young adult group meetings since last spring, and it was so nice to reconnect with everyone.Â There were many new people there, in fact the meeting was probably the largest one I’ve ever been to.Â I wish it weren’t so large only because I hate to learn about cancer striking more people.Â Unfortunately, there is nothing I can change about that, but I know that we all learn from each other.Â We learn how to cope, what questions to ask, how to move on with life following treatment.Â I certainly didn’t want to be in this position, but I feel that because I’ve faced cancer twice, and I’ve lived beneath its shadow for just over four years now, I’m somewhat of an expert.Â I think everyone in the room is or is learning to become an expert in their specific disease.Â We all have valuable information/advice to share, and having an outlet where we can do so is quite reassuring.
In other news, did anyone notice how everything seemed to turn green overnight on Friday?Â I woke up Saturday to a beautiful rainy day, one of very favorite things, and when I drove around, I noticed all lawns were bright green.Â More flowers were blooming, especially the cherry trees, bugs were singing, the air smelled different….it appears as though spring has definitely sprung!!Â Hallelujah for that!!Â Don’t get me wrong, I love the winter (as you should know by now!), but I get so excited for each new season to start…a fresh start and new growth to attract our eyes, new aromas to fill our nose, the spring symphony of bugs and birds (very different from the summer and fall ones).Â It’s especially delightful to play outside with the pups and breathe in the smoke from the fireplace carried by the soft breeze blowing leaves across the yard.Â The two seasons seem to be mingling for a while, and the days they create together are the best days of the year.
I have my window open so I can enjoy the beautiful evening too.Â I’m getting pretty tired now, so I will say goodbye for now.Â I hope you all enjoyed your weekends as much as I did mine!Â Happy almost April!!
Lots of love,