Sunday, February 12, 2017

What a roller coaster week!!

I’m starting to wonder if the chemo is the culprit or the medications I have to take the day before, the premeds before they start the chemo and the meds the day after.  The day before, I take 2 Dexamethasone in the morning and 2 in the evening.  This is a steroid.  Then the day of chemo, they start me out on Benadryl, an anti-nausea med and Decadron – another steroid.  I understand that this is all to combat the side effects of the chemo.  I do appreciate that I’ve had very few of the common side effects, and virtually none of the awful ones, such as nausea, diarrhea, etc.  But these steroids are doing a number on me!  They give me energy – in a rather hyper way.  I get a lot accomplished, knowing that I’m probably over-doing and should be resting, so it is a real balancing act.  They make me shaky/jittery and VERY emotional!!!  Not in a good way, either! This past week, I had a terribly crabby day.  I snapped at Guy and the day turned quite ugly.  I finally had to sit down and apologize to him.  I tried to explain that this was not the real me acting.  I didn’t like being ugly and feeling so out of control.  I really wasn’t trying to be mean to him.  I asked him to work with me to try to calm me down when I said something I shouldn’t have rather than snapping back at me – which is the logical thing to do.  I know this is hard on him, too.  It was a very difficult evening.  I HATE being so out of control of my body and emotions.  I ended up sitting in my quiet place, eyes closed and just praying for calm and PEACE again – singing my Peace song over and over in my mind.

One of the biggest problems this week was that I went for two nights, from the day before chemo until the day after with no sleep – two nights and 3 days.  At my age, I do NOT do slumber parties!!!!  So, I was all hyped up on the steroids, but EXAUSTED!!  The chemo was Thursday and the extra fluids day was Friday.  I told the infusion RN about not being able to sleep.  She suggested taking Benadryl before bedtime.  Why didn’t I think of that???  Friday night I did take 25 mg, and I FINALLY slept!!  (Plus I was coming off the steroids) I got 6 ½ sleep and only got up once.  I had a doctor tell me that I needed to get at least 7 hours sleep each night, but I’ve not come close to that since starting all this.  Anyway, by yesterday morning (Saturday), I woke up feeling human again and wanted to go to Lyons to eat breakfast at Scrambled Sam’s.  This little hole in the wall has the BEST breakfast – GREAT bacon you can’t get just anywhere.  Guy was on the hunt for this special bag of sand – can’t really explain what that is all about J, but he couldn’t remember where he had seen this one bag.  Ace in Lyons only had the 50 lb bag, and he only wanted the 20 lb bag. So we left Lyons, drove on past Little River to McPherson.  He looked in numerous places there, and no 20 lb bags.  Since I had been so patient to ride along, he took me to let me spend some time In my favorite place in town – the quilt shop!!  Hey, you know I’m feeling better when my interest in quilting is coming back.  I gotta tell you – when this whole thing started, I thought I might never get back to quilting again.  I had no idea what might lie ahead, and thoughts of selling everything did go through my head.  But lately, I’ve been itching to get back to my projects.  Of course there is no way to do it now, since everything is packed up, and there’s really no room to do anything anyway.  There will be time enough when we get into our new house, and I can have one whole room to set up and organize it all.  I’ll just take my time and not worry about how quickly I can get started again.  Right now, I’m just doing projects in my head, and that is good enough for me – does not expend a lot of energy that I need just for activities of daily living.

Today, Sunday, was just a VERY blessed day!!  I slept well last night, and woke up with much less shakiness.  We were very anxious to go to church, because we were finally going to join the church.  This had been planned some time ago, but each time the Sunday came, I would be sick.  It was also the day pictures were going to be taken for the pictorial directory.  Well…..that presented a problem for me!  What wig was I going to wear???  I put out to my Facebook friends pictures of me with each wig and ask them to vote.  And did they ever respond!  Lots of votes and comments.  It was nip and tuck all the way to the end between the two darker wigs.  In the end, the lighter one won, so that’s the one I wore.  

Of course the pictures do not really do justice to the wigs, and it’s hard to get the true picture.  What’s funny is that the one that was chosen is probably my least favorite.  It wants to flip out at my ears, so I have to work with it to get it to lie down there.  It is very pretty from all angles except straight on, and that is what I see.  I really prefer the darker one with more hair and lift.  

It is easy to wear, comfortable and you don’t have to fix anything – just shake it out and plop it on!  And here is even a funnier thing.  The shorter white/platinum wig is the one I bought in KC at a wig salon after trying on many styles there.  This one is a lot prettier on when it is fluffed up a bit.  I had just taken it out of the box when I took this picture.

Guy and I both fell for that one because we thought it looked like me.  And it cost about 4 times what these wigs did that I bought online from Paula Young!  It is a real quality wig and you can tell and feel that it is a nice one.  But it got 2 votes, I think!  šŸ˜€  It was the one that I had really planned to wear before I found out pictures were going to be taken and would forever be in that book!  That’s when I thought I’d have some fun and ask for opinions.  If the truth be told, I’d just as soon go au natural.  Many have told me to do just that, and I would seriously consider doing that if it were not for this crazy looking flap that takes up about a 1/3 of that side of my head.  

I wouldn’t hesitate to do it around my friends, but to just walk down the street or into a restaurant with that bizarre reconstructive work would gross out most people.  Guy always says, “Don’t scare the children!”  šŸ˜€

Well, I got clear off there.  What I really wanted to emphasize here is not my head, hair, or looks. It is what a blessed day it was to be in church and be received so warmly by these loving supportive people.  In the Nazarene church, where I grew up, when you moved, the previous church just sent your letter of membership to the new church, and they would call you up to recognize you, then the congregation would all walk by, shake your hand, and welcome you while the pianist would play "Blest Be the Tie That Binds."  Not here!  It is a big deal when you join.  Of course Pastor Ted had been by a few weeks ago to explain what the church believes, and what the criteria is to join, and what is expected of us – ALL things that we agree with.  1st, you acknowledge that you are saved and a follower of Jesus.  Then that you understand what the church believes, and you agree to be faithful and a participant, and then you support it with your tithes.  All  this was scripturally based as he would read from the Bible. We were in full agreement with everything he said.  This particular Congregational Church is different from the run-of-the-mill Congregational Churches.  A few years ago, as I understand, the CC church at large started heading toward a more liberal stance, and there was a group of churches across the nation that felt that was not the direction they should take.  So, they broke away and formed the Conservative Congregational Church Convention.  We heard about this when we first started going to this church, and I was immediately impressed with that.  Pastor explained all about how that happened and how he and this church felt it important to base all their beliefs on the full Bible - from the beginning to the end.  Guy and I both were impressed with that, and just felt this was where we were supposed to be.  You know, when you ask the Lord, prayerfully and sincerely, to lead you to the right places, whether it be to where you will live or where you will go to church, He will lead you to the right place.  I can’t explain it, but from the 1st time we visited this church, it just felt right!  There are 3 churches here in this little town – this CCCC, the Methodist, and the Catholic.  As a child, if we were ever snowed in and couldn’t get to our Nazarene church in Lyons, we would visit the Methodist church.  I’ll tell you how the Lord just works.  When we first started coming here twice a year for one month, my neighbor invited me to the ladies Bible study at the CCCC on Wednesday mornings.  I thanked her for the invitation, but didn’t go.  On another visit, she asked me again, and again, I just didn’t go. I wasn’t opposed to going – I just didn’t bother to go.  Then after the 3rd time, I decided to attend with her.  Wow!  Why did I wait so long to do that???  I found a group of ladies that I fell in love with.  I found they were such wonderful loving Christian women.  Most of them I already knew from growing up here, but never REALLY knew them and how spirit-filled they were.  They immediately welcomed me and accepted me as a part of the group, and I began to look forward each week meeting with them and growing spiritually with them.  From that point on, we would attend the church when we were here and always looked forward to it.  I’ve never been in a church where I felt so accepted and welcomed.  Immediately we knew this was where we were supposed to be.  They have been so super supportive and praying for us especially since all this illness started.  I’m just overwhelmed by the love they show.  Love is not what you say – it is what you show, and these people here live out their words. 

Anyway, in their process of you joining the church, they ask for someone to nominate that you may join, then there is a second and a vote.  There was a rousing nomination!  šŸ˜€  And then the 2nd and a unanimous vote.  Everyone kind of jokes over the whole formality of it, but that is the way they do it.  We were then called to the front, and Pastor Ted went through what we had previously acknowledged to him in our home, and we said, “We will.”  Then he addressed he congregation as to their duties toward us, and they said, “We will.”  I could hardly hold back the tears.  When he said we were now official members, he handed the microphone to me, and I got all chocked up.  I just wanted them all to know how happy we were to be a part of them and thanked them for all the support, prayers and warm acceptance of us.  Guy then said, “What she said!”  šŸ˜€  It was just a wonderful, beautiful experience for the both of us, and I’ve been basking in the presence of the Lord all day.  It was such a blessed end to a very tough week, and I simply can’t thank my God enough!  He is SO faithful!!!

You may go through tunnels along the way, but He always brings you through and out into the sunshine of His love.  I’m just so grateful for these days of blessings!!

And as always…….I’m in His hands….

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