Posts Tagged ‘study’

I am frustrated. (Hmmm… I don’t think this is the first time I’ve started a blog entry with those words!) Ever since March 2012 when I was diagnosed with breast cancer and my dear friend Heather said “We are doing the Jimmy Fund Marathon Walk in your honor!” I’ve wanted to walk the full 26.2 miles. Last year I was still going through chemo, and hadn’t even begun radiation, so was only able to do the last five miles with the team. I said this was going to be my year!

Now it’s looking like it’s not. No worries, it’s not severe health related or anything truly bad like that, it’s just about listening and being smart. You see (maybe you should sit down, this is such a shock coming from me), I have a lot planned on September 8.

  • First there is the Jimmy Fund Boston Marathon Walk. I intended to walk the full 26.2 miles, beginning at 6:30 in the morning and guesstimating being done about 2 p.m.
  • Then it’s my cousin Rick’s wedding late that afternoon in Wrentham…
  • And as if that isn’t enough for one day, I need to then get to Logan for a 10:30 p.m. flight to Paris. (Yes, Paris – for work.)

At first it was like “great – you’ll be so tired, you’ll conk right out and sleep the whole plane ride!” Ah, but I can’t! We can’t forget the delightful lymphedema in my right arm! I was told that I will need to be up exercising it and walking around every hour of the flight – oh, because of the fear of blood clots, too, because of the tamoxifen. And this is also if my arm isn’t already swollen from the intense walk…

So my close friends and family have all chimed in. And there has not been one person who is in favor of my doing the whole 26.2. In fact, some have quite vehemently told me I will NOT be doing the full walk. (Note: when told I absolutely cannot do something, that usually makes me want to do it even more.) Arrrggghhhhh!!! Why does it all have to be on the same day???

But none of those dates and times are in my control. What is in my control is my body. And how much I put it through that day (and every other). Sometimes I forget I’m not superwoman. That I have limitations. (I know, this blog is full of shockers tonight, huh?) I honestly don’t want to be in pain or have an abnormally huge right arm for my Paris trip. I want to actually be in the work meetings I will be there for, not in a Paris hospital, simply because I was stubborn and insisted on doing it all.

So that’s that. I will only walk the half marathon: 13.1 miles. I’m trying to get over the feeling of letting people down by not walking the whole thing. I feel like I’m letting everyone down (not really sure who everyone is, but just everyone). The Jimmy Fund. Dana-Farber. Everyone who is donating to my walk. Myself. I know in my head that it’s not true; no one else feels that I’m letting them down. I will keep reminding myself that. And I will remember that, thanks to Dana-Farber and all the awesome doctors, researchers, nurses and everyone there, I am here and able to walk and raise money to help kick cancer!

And thank you to everyone who has sponsored me and my team – Team Inspire Boston – so far. I’m one-third of the way to my personal goal, and a quarter of the way to our team goal, all thanks to YOU! If you haven’t yet donated, please visit my personal donation page – even a few dollars – every cent counts and helps us conquer this horrid disease! Or even better: join us for the walk! Any distance is welcome! Go to Team Inspire Boston to sign up and enter code JF2013 for $5 off the registration fee. We’d so love to have you cross the finish line with us!

Oh, and speaking of Dana-Farber and the Jimmy Fund – it’s the annual telethon, which Nick and I were part of this year… and I guess in a way this year, too. I just saw this pop up in my Facebook Newsfeed from The Jimmy Fund:

jimmyfundtelethonCrazy to think that I looked like that one year ago. Boy, am I happy to have hair again! But if (literally) baring my head helped inspire someone to donate and help #KCancer, it was worth it!!!

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I had a wonderfully relaxing three days in Florida. I got some rest, some sun and a whole lot of love.

I also realized it will be incredibly difficult to detach from work. This may be a surprise to some, but I really thought it was going to be easy to turn the laptop and blackberry off. Yet I worked some of every day I was in Florida and felt bad not being at work for all the events happening, both planned and unplanned. Then when Vanessa said she’s cutting off the work talk from here on out, I felt like she was putting me out in the cold (for my own good, of course). I take comfort in the fact that I will be able to coax stuff out of her along the way (maybe bribe) – and that I do have other sources! David was right, though: this ain’t gonna to be easy.

But it was so nice to have a few days with this part of my family and somewhat away from all the cancer stuff. I spent as much time as I could with my crazy fun nephews, who I hate living so far away from but who are always so excited to see me, even when I’m not with their cool cousin Nick. And it’s amazing how their minds work. You wouldn’t think they would really get what is going on with me, but when they played the lottery Friday (with the fortune cookie numbers that eight-year-old Hudson instantly memorized), Holden said was that if they win he is going to donate all the money to cancer research.  Not what I’d expect from a six-year-old. I didn’t even know he knew cancer needed research!  I guess you can’t underestimate what young ones absorb and take to heart…

I also found that you’re never too old for your dad to teach you something new. We spent a leisurely morning at the beach treasure hunting. I have always been great at finding beach treasures – at least they are treasures to me: shells, rocks, sand dollars, starfish, hermit crabs. But I’ve never found a shark tooth, although I’ve tried. This time, dad taught me how – what to look for (the shape, the gum line), how to tell how old they are (black are the oldest – billions of years, brown – millions of years and white – most recent) and that they are lighter than rocks and shells so you have to grab them before the water sweeps them away. He started finding a bunch (including a big brown one that’s about an inch wide.) Then I started to catch on and finally found my first shark tooth! I soon found a few more and went home with my pink Red Sox baseball cap full of beach treasures. Dad made me take all the shark teeth – except I gave the first one I found to him.


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Written this morning

I’m sitting on the plane, on my way to visit my family in Florida. What is my reading material? Two magazines: Dana Farber’s Paths of Progress and Breast Cancer Wellness. We haven’t even taken off and my eyes start to fill. I never thought this would be me. I don’t want my life to be about cancer. I don’t want to read this stuff. I want to read novels. Or the Steve Jobs biography. Or Shades of Grey, which I now see everywhere since Tina told me everyone is talking about.

Last book I read? Why I Wore Lipstick to My Mastectomy.  Don’t get me wrong – it is excellent and I am so thankful Geralyn Lucas wrote it because as far as I’ve come on my journey, so much of what she’s said is right on. We’re very similar and so I can see some of what I’m going to be going through. It isn’t all pretty, but it has a happy ending and I’m determined mine will too. (I highly recommend it for anyone wondering what this is like – or you can watch the lifetime movie based on the book – it’s free on the web site, link above. I haven’t watched it yet but plan to.)

I know I need to read, to study, to learn. At dinner last night Mike asked me if there are certain foods I should be eating now or after surgery. I know there are but I haven’t really looked into it. And he asked about other things like certain types of exercise or specific things I’ll need. I don’t know. I haven’t wanted to deal with it. Surgery is Monday. I guess it’s time to find out.

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