Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Some Good News!

From the very beginning, when I first found out that Roxie had breast cancer, I just said, "Well, Father, just like you carried me through my mother's last days, we need you to carry us through this and put the pieces together for us."

This morning while being quiet before the throne an image of Christ carrying His little lamb came to mind. You know the one if you've ever gone to Sunday School. As I responded to that picture, I said, "Yeah, that's what I need this morning. I need some snuggling. I need some affection."

After a few minutes, I received a text from Roxie. The reconstructive surgeon has agreed to do her surgery on Monday, October 6th. He usually ONLY does them on Thursdays!

After a few tears and thanksgiving Praise the Lords, I wrote in my journal, The reconstructive surgeon agreed to take Roxie on his day off....he usually doesn't work on Mondays, but The Lord moved in his heart. That's awesome!

Roxie texted again that perhaps her other surgeon convinced him to do it. I say, she may have been very instrumental in convincing him and that it all worked together to give us the best team of surgeons available to us.

Roxie is excited to see what perky boobs feel like again! Good news is always encouraging and having something to look forward to even through difficulties is some seriously good news!

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Way Over!

If I were Rachel Rae, I would have picked either the Duluth Grill (rated #1) or the Northern Waters Smokehaus (rated #2).

The Duluth Grill was big on breakfast, vegetarian and sandwiches while Northern Waters Smokehaus was a delicatessen. Unfortunately, neither of these tripped hubby's palate.

Many restaurants post their menu online. I like being able to preview them. Sometimes, the choices sound great and I am moved to excitement until I read the reviews. One bad review is more easily overlooked, but several bad reviews definitely result in a reject.

I had hoped to get out to enjoy the warm sunshine and since we were in Canal Park, figured we could look for Northern Waters Smokehaus. The reviews warned that it would be hard to find, but worth looking for. We were unsuccessful.

After much debate and some serious disappointment, we settled for an old reliable. Timber Lodge Steakhouse. I know. It's not as much fun if you've been there before. But, it had been many years since we'd been there.

I had hoped for something a bit more intimate. Apparently I was thinking of someplace else. We were seated fairly close to everyone else. The private booths I envisioned were not there.

It took awhile to get our drink order, but since the waitress had brought water, we didn't go thirsty while we perused our menu.

Hubby ordered the prime rib sandwich along with jalapeƱo poppers for an appetizer and I ordered the Timber Lodge Chopped Salad.

The jalapeƱos were grilled and stuffed with an amazing blend of garlic, shallots, cream cheese and Parmesan cheese served with a sweet pineapple jam. They were a great start to our dinner and we were pleasantly surprised by the presentation. I was pleased. They were spicy hot and wonderful. The best part was that they were not deep fried.

Hubby enjoyed his sandwich which was thick with blackened prime rib, melted Provolone and fried shallots. It included a creamy horseradish sauce. I took two small taste bites because he loved it so much.
So pumped to enjoy our meal, I failed to notice my blurry photo.

My salad, a Lodge Legend, consisted of chopped lettuce, small bits of blue cheese, slivered almonds, bits of bacon, cucumbers, tiny pieces of toasted coconut and sweet potato crusted chicken which turned out to be fried. I ordered the dressing on the side which was a citrus vinaigrette. It was an excellent light dressing for the salad. I wondered where the coconut was, but found it along one side along with the slivered almonds, so mixed them both in. Hubby threw a couple red onions on my plate (from his) and when I sliced them into the salad thought they made an excellent addition. I also appreciated the smaller bites of cheese rather than the huge globs usually found in similar salads at other restaurants because the cheese is more evenly dispersed allowing a more even consistent flavor throughout, rather than overwhelming my taste buds.
Yes. Haste makes waste.

Our dining experience overall was fine. Our food was good. We had enough salad to bring home for my brunch, but we would never have made it on the Rachel Rae budget. We were way over!

Monday, September 15, 2014

On the Hunt!

We are in Duluth today to take a computer class. It's a wonderful warm 60 degree day. Perfect for a ride north.

We got a great rate on our motel room which is on Lake Superior. It has a hot tub, which we will definitely use later tonight.

First, I'm ecstatic about having internet. In fact, I'm in my glory. I'm able to type on my tablet almost like on a real computer. I've taken advantage of it by typing several posts that have been brewing. (We do not have internet in our apartment.)

Hubby is also in his glory. He is tuned in to the television, checking out the news and all the channels. (We do not have television at our apartment.) I see football in his future tonight.

The other very exciting thing about this evening is that we have yet to decide where we will go eat dinner. There are over 200 restaurants with great reviews and since I've longed to do the Rachel Rae $40.00 a day, I will be one of those annoying customers yielding my phone camera. I can pretend and pretend I will. For this night, I will be Rachel Rae on review.

Look out Duluth, We're on the hunt!

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Sweet Confirmation!

When my daughter asked me to pray with her about her decision about the mastectomy and nipple saving procedure, I panicked a little, but set out determined to consult The Great Physician.

The hardest thing I did yesterday was to type a message to my daughter telling her that I'd decided that I supported her decision to have a double mast but also to tell her she might as well go all the way. All the way.  Because she wouldn't have feeling in her breasts anyway, nor will she ever be able to nurse another child.

Because of a couple connection difficulties yesterday, I was unable to email it to her and she was unable to read my FB message to her, so I told her that I would post it on my blog. Second time around produced just as many tears as the first round.

Here's what I wrote:

After much prayer...praise and confirmation through other contacts, I have no doubt that I support your decision to have a double mastectomy (mast) 100%. It is not without tears or sadness...but I get it.

So far as the nipple sparing part, I wonder, "why?" What would be the reason? You will no longer be able to nurse or have any sensation, so what would be the reason or purpose to leave the nipple and areola intact? From my reading on, I found that this approach has not been used as long as the standard mast. It also said that the nipple will not have a good blood supply, so it can wither away or become deformed. Since the nerves will be cut, there will be little, if any, feeling left. AND, it can leave behind more breast tissue than the other form of mast. (Does that also mean there is more breast tissue that can form another space for a recurrence?}

There is less scar tissue and reconstructed breasts seem more natural. (Oh yeah. Less scar tissue is always good. More natural is even better.)

I guess I say....if you are going to do reconstruction, do reconstruction all the way. And then hang on to believing that God will give us the right doctors and that you will be healed and won't have to fear its coming back.

Plus, you can look forward to bigger boobs, if you think that's what you would like. But, dang...I'd love smaller boobs, so there you go. Guess we should all be thankful to have the bodies we have and the health we have.

If I could take this away from you, I would. I love you and am praying my heart me 24/7!

After note: While I typed my message to her, she texted that she had decided. No nipple saving but nipple reconstruction. I'd say that's a sweet confirmation (for both of us)!

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Thank You!

I received a sweet text from a friend who found out about our latest blow after reading my blog. She has two friends who also have breast cancer.

It seems that everywhere I go and every one of my friends knows someone or has someone in their family going through this fight. I have two other FB friends fighting it as well.

The kind words from friends mean so much because we know they care. Even for those who don't know what to say or find themselves at a loss for words, we know they are saying their prayers for us, as well, and that brings us comfort. Thank you for your prayers. We appreciate them. We appreciate you.

Speaking of friends and kind words, she gave me the most encouraging line I've heard (or in this case read) in a very long time. She said, "Glad you are posting as it makes me feel closer."

Huge smiles. What encouragement! What a compliment! Somehow, typing this now makes me feel closer too! Maybe it's because I know that she will read this and feel the same hug I feel right now. And, it feels pretty dang wonderful! I'm glad we became friends even though it was because of our friendship and love for Scott whom we both miss very much.

This year has been a tough one for a lot of us. That's why we need each other and we need to hang close. Your friendship and prayers mean more than my words can ever express. Thank you!