WARNING *** Do Not Read If You Don’t Want to Visit the Land of the Boobless 

Trying so hard to channel THIS

I’ve been putting this post off until I felt happy that radiation was over. I have yet to feel it, so here we go.

Wednesday was my 25th radiation treatment. AKA I’m done. AKA I am a walking piece of beef jerky. My arm pit is one large open wound and it’s slowly opening down my chest. The overall radiated area is the reddest thing I have have seen on a human and when I remove the bandages and clean the area, layers of skin slough off. Nurses word choice, not mine. It itches like a mo’fo’ but I fear if I scratch it, all of my skin will come off. That is a 100% serious comment. No funny business when it comes to losing skin. Just boobs, I guess.

At times, it feels like someone is inserting a handful of needles into my body and giving them a good wiggle. The pain never goes away. At night I wake up itching and then causing myself more pain. Each day, I slather on some cream prescribed by the doctor and bandage myself right up. At first, the cream gave me relief but not anymore. Apparently it’s just a thing I’m going to have to ride out because I have yet to see any healing or relief from the pain. Because if you have recommended something to help, I have tried it.

Far left: last day of rads. Progression to today 🔥

My fried pit is bringing back my T-Rex arm. Which gives me terrible neck pain and is NOT helping my shoulder situation. I look forward to the day when I don’t have to tell my kids “watch out, remember mama has owies”. Then I can move on to dealing with the royally fucked up mental issues I am left with. So yes, I am done with radiation.

It’s been so long since my last post that I feel like I have lots of updates. I’ll just give some highlights. A new yoga teacher took over my Wednesday morning healing class. I had an immediate good feeling about her. We got to talking after class and it turns out she is a 12 year survivor, diagnosed right after delivering her third child. 12 YEARS!!! I love those stories. So much better than when someone says “Oh, I knew so and so, they had C and they died.” Don’t say that. Just don’t.
Recently I had a massage with an amazing massage therapist here in Orange County who gives free oncology massages. She has a pay it forward program where tips allow her to do these massages for free. When I saw her, I had a flash back of the last time I had an appointment and I realized how far I have come. I remember feeling damaged, unsure- it was shortly after my double mastectomy. Even if I don’t realize it, I really have come a long way in a couple of months.  And funny thing- I have never felt more confident in my appearance. Ever.
My chiropractor has saved my ass (and neck and back and shoulder…) these last few weeks since I have been frequenting her office. She doesn’t only crack me and send me out the door, she’s like a therapist and friend. Looking back, she has helped me trough some really hard shit in the last few years and is definitely helping me get through this rough period. She’s one of the OG Rad Lady Posse members.

I took a macrame workshop a couple of weeks ago and it was a really fun way to ‘check out’ for a bit. I enjoyed it so much, reminded me of college- really putting my textile design degree to use. 😜 But I also loved the way I felt energized and happy afterwards. Like a power meditation or something. I bought some supplies to make some things on my own, you know, in all my free time.

My macrame masterpiece 🌱

The rawness of my chest and pit have not allowed me to go to yoga lately so it’s safe to say I’ve been a raging bitch. Word on the street is that I’ve been a bit ‘on edge’. The word’s not wrong. I know it’s true. (Re-reading this line makes me think of that song: Girl, you know it’s true Ooh Ooh Ooh I love you -Milli Vanilli) I’ve been an impatient, mean mama and wife lately. Which then makes me stress because I ‘should’ be loving life, just being thankful that I am alive. I am thankful but things still suck sometimes. And when I stress, I get the urge to purge. Like throwing everything out will give me clarity or something. Still looking for that clarity…..

I’m finding it hard to find the humor in this part of it all. Hopefully my next post will be more uplifting.
“It’s a terrible story, although surprisingly upbeat.” -Name that movie 🎥
Oh and I’m going to leave this right here-

This Girl is on Fire… 

Cue Alicia Keys. Admit it, you just sang that in your head. Or maybe you’re more into this one: “It’s getting hot in herre…. ” but I won’t be taking off my clothes Mr. Nelly. I’d scare the children. Or maybe you prefer something a bit more old school: “And it burns, burns, burns, that ring of fire.” That’s right, Mr. Cash. Whichever your song choice, this shit burns. And itches reeeeaaaal bad. 

Last week, the radiation fatigue was intense but I’m feeling a bit more energized this week. You can now see the “exit dose” of radiation on my back. I noticed it because I started to feel itchy and asked the tech about it. Chuck told me that the radiation doesn’t stop once it hits your body, that shit powers on through. Literally. Thankfully I only have 4 more treatments left! 

Even better, there’s actually an end in sight when I look at all of my future appointments on my Kaiser app. Not to get too ahead of myself but it’s nice to know I won’t be heading to Kaiser every damn day. I love the peeps, I really do. But mama is ready to mellow out a bit. My last radiation treatment is on July 5th and my last physical therapy appointment is July 12th for my shoulder. Woot woot! 

For about the last week I’ve been dealing with some numbness and light tingling in my legs. My oncologist’s office seems to believe that it’s from the chemo and I will continue to have it on and off. Cooool. 

Also, Ive been in talks with my gynecologist about having my hysterectomy and ovary removal at the end of August but need to talk with my oncologist in regards to the timing of the oral chemo. I agree that I want it done sooner than later but I also feel like at some point, I think my body needs a break to get back on (some sort of) track. So maybe that means my hysterectomy can be pushed back since they already took out my fallopian tubes during the C section. We shall see. 

Fun fact: It’s easier to live in the present when you can’t remember the past. Frickin chemo brain. 

OH! And this ‘preemie’ baby of ours, is officially over the 50th percentile for weight and height! Chunk monster 💙

8/25 Rads Complete 

Friday was my eighth rad treatment. So far, not much to report. Sometimes after a shower or a long walk, the treated area looks a bit pink but it fades a little over time. I don’t feel any discomfort so that’s cool. Except, I tried to swat a fly the other day and nearly threw my right shoulder (treatment side) out and that shit is still sore. 

When I checked into rads Friday morning, I was told that one of the machines was down again and they were about 45 minutes behind. I took the time to run over to the main hospital and pick up a prescription. 

Every Friday, outside of the main hospital, Kaiser hosts a farmers market, so I walked through to find something to eat after my rx pick up. Nothing looked as good as the weird pre-packaged cafeteria turkey sandwich I was craving but I did get suckered in to some delicious looking apricots and plums. And the tea guy- he really got me. I ended up purchasing some super yummy jasmine green tea and Golden Milk (turmeric, cinnamon, and ginger)… mmmmmmmmm. And yup, I scarfed down a turkey sandwich from the cafeteria and made it back to radiation just in time for that zap zap. 

You know how I’ve said that I believe everyone comes into our life for a reason? Whether we know that reason or not and whether that person is absolutely amazing, neutral, or super sucky- I am thankful for them all. 

This whole C mess has allowed me to ‘meet’ so many wonderful people. Meet is in quotes because I haven’t physically met majority of these people but have created amazing bonds through the internet. Sounds pretty creepy, I get it. But one non creepy- instead- amazing, badass, hilarious, supportive and overall rad person recently sent me something that gave me chills. She mailed me a hummingbird feeder. Sounds simple but it truly means a lot to me. It’s like a little stop along the fast paced path for those quick birdies. And when they come by, I also pause in my day. I think of all the things and people I am thankful for and for all of those who have passed. Harlon is also way into it. It’s a fun break in our day to check on the birdies together. AND I think I see a tiny nest up above our new feeder. ❤️

Fun side note- I’ll be heading to Las Vegas next month to actually meet some of my fellow Kick Ass Mamas. I’m so pumped!  

I am thankful for my new friends, my old friends, my family, TEAM FILLOON. I am thankful. 

I don’t have a great transition for this part. So here it is. I tossed two more seed balls into the open field near Kaiser because we recently lost another mama. It’s heartbreaking. But what truly rips the heart apart is that her newborn also passed the same night, minutes apart.  I didn’t get a chance to know her well but it’s still painful and scary to hear about and her story needs to be shared. All of our stories need to be shared in hopes that we can eventually find answers. 

Last Sunday was National Cancer Survivors Day. You may have seen a collage I posted on social media. If not, it’s here. Like the story above, it may make some of you uncomfortable. But that’s life. And like I said before, this is mine. 

And this… just because it’s so right