Tuesday, June 3, 2014

A Short Trip But One That Meant SO Much!!

My daughter, Samantha had a short business trip (last month-forgive me for not posting sooner) to Ohio so I asked if Debbie Weiler and I could tag along as I knew it was close to where two people I consider friends since starting the cholangiocarcinoma journey lived!!  Pam Kunklier and Lisa Salem-Craine whom I have talked to and visited through Facebook or the Cholangiocarcinoma website.....but meeting them in person was just so much more as far as connecting and just having fun!!
After Samantha finished her business, we freshened up at the hotel and went for supper at David & Lisa Salem-Craine's house. What a wonderful evening and a super delicious Italian supper.....lots of CC talk and telling our stories.  I felt like a bad guest as we stayed until 10:30 Ohio time but my clock was showing 9:30 (which is Illinois time). Sorry guys!! 
I was super pumped all day.....SOOO excited to meet Lisa and her family. Lisa,  David,  and their son were all simply delightful.....AND we all shared a bottle of Berryville White Squirrel wine ....so we took a little bit of Richland County to them.

The next morning we met Pam Kunklier and Lisa Salem Craine at Panera Bread for coffee and a bite to eat. I have known Pam for appr. 3 years but never met her......it was sheer pleasure to give her a giant hug today....such a beautiful lady with a lot of poise. Thank you both for starting our morning off on a great start!!!

Back to Illinois we drove and made it home around 7 p.m. I just wanted to share that the only good thing about having this cancer is meeting some of the most giving and wonderful people ever......I have already told Samantha I want to go next time she goes to Ohio......I think we could get into some shopping addiction problems (in Ohio with Lisa) if we were together for more than a few hours. :-)
As I walked up the walkway of my house from getting home....everything seemed so much greener, all the flowers just smiling at me......As Dorothy from Kansas says..."There's No Place Like Home"
So...thanks Samantha for dragging two old ladies along....and taking us to meet my CC friends.....

Sam~"to the moon and back"!!    :-)

I also wanted to share my Mother's Day present. I have been a huge fan of the band Chicago..... my husband and I spent the night in Evansville and saw them in concert....IN THE 1st ROW!!  Oh yeah!!!!   Thank you~ Thank you ~Thank you to all five of my daughters!!  We even went backstage at intermission and met privately with the whole band.   J.U.S.T. U.S.!!!    They gave us free shirts, hats, signed a jersey Pat bought for me, and also some posters of the band that they all personally signed. The extra special poster was the advertisement poster for that night and they also signed it. It was absolutely wonderful and a night I will remember til the end of time!

My blog is now over 100,000 hits. It is at 100,397......that is crazy!  I had a visit with my doctor in Effingham (Dr.Dy) and he did blood work and checked my blood thickness/thinness. He says platelets are good, white count is good....everything is looking fine. Kidney and liver functions are good. I feel like something is ajar....but I also know my kids say I do this every time it starts to get close to the time to go to MD Anderson. That's not until July 14 & 15.....and Dr. Dy says my lungs sound fine so I must pray for more faith and to trust in the Lord and hand it all over to Him. He is leading me on this journey....so what am I worrying about?  I think it is natural and I just tell myself that the more I worry, the less I live.   I have been slacking a bit on exercising...and I am not proud of it. I plan to join the pool program for adults only before the pool opens everyday for the kiddos to enjoy.  Even if I walk laps instead of swimming every lap....  I truly believe keeping active has helped me in the cancer battle. So I best get a marching (or swimming)....right?

I have started (with the permission of Richland Memorial Hospital) a snack/lunch program for chemo patients on Wednesdays. That is the long day for chemo patients at RMH. It does not benefit me as I go to Crossroads Cancer Center...and I am not getting any treatments right now. But I want there to be food brought in for the cancer patients and their caregiver/spouse to enjoy.  It does get expensive and if I can help Pay It Forward to some cancer patients...I feel God is calling me to help implement this program. I have had some businesses sign up to provide food and by word of mouth, I believe it will blossom into a great program. TOMORROW is the first day they will get food delivered to RMH. I am providing food tomorrow.  I am taking doughnuts and fruit for the am snack. For lunch, I am taking ham and turkey subs with Colby jack cheese on them. I am also taking my momma's homemade chocolate chip cookies and some gingersnap cookies, plus a variety of small bags of chips. The hospital provides tea, coffee, and water throughout the day.   The girls from Citizen's Bank has signed up to do like 3 times in a year, Susie Trupiano and Joe's Pizza has signed up, Lauren McClain with State Farm Insurance, Sandy Hahn with Hahn's Carpet, Zuber Law, Roll With It Bakery.....and my mom is going to pitch this program to her church ladies to see if they would like to provide food. Please feel free to PM me if you or your church bible study group or if you are a business or even a group of friends who want to do this. I need to hit up Mayor Ray Vaughn......I know he has a big heart and it would be so great to have him involved and backing this worthwhile project!!  Believe me, something like this is huge for a cancer patient who may not have an appetite by supper. This is something I CAN do for my community and all donations/people who help provide food are helping people in our area...people you might even know. There are only 52 weeks in a year....and there are already 3 weeks there will not be chemo, so if a group did it 3-4 times a year, it wouldn't take long to fill up my calendar. AND....you never know when it might be YOU who is grabbing a banana or roll with a cup of coffee while you or a loved one is getting chemo. Think it will never happen to you?  Neither did I when I had just turned 46!! 

So, as I close this blog, I apologize that it has been so long since I last posted. I am doing well and living life like a champ. Babysitting a lot, getting pulled over for speeding.....just got a warning (must be my good looks and charm.....choke- spudder- puke!  And it was only 18 miles over the speed limit! :-)  There's been wedding showers, baby showers, shopping for wedding supplies....ahhhh!

To my CC friends, know that I pray for you all each night and for all cancer patients everywhere. I pray for a cure soon...or more time for some who have less time than I do to live. Dr. Dy said he diagnosed 3 last week with CC IN EFFINGHAM!  That is a lot in one week since it is so rare.  What spaceship is this "crap" coming from.  (Excuse my language mom).

May peace be with each and every one of you who reads this blog. 


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