Wednesday, February 16, 2011

A Cancer hmmm... some thoughts... and a card....

Today's Shout Outs:

Sue Ann, Michelle A, Pat D, Suzanne D, Rita J, Clare B, Laurie W, Kelly B, Susan W, Diane J, Renee L, Julia A, Karen H, Courtney H, Laurie J, June K, Tom and Sandy R

A cancer hmmm....

Dear friends, its Wednesday and pretty much like clockwork, I'm nearly back to my usual emotional state of being which is a good thing.  I have a longer post that is "heavier", but I wanted to share just one of those weird to me, cancer "things". 

After I got out of the hospital, my sister took me to the mall and we went to the make-up booth. The woman at the counter was very concerned for my soon to be very dry chemo skin.  Well, let me tell you (at least in my case) if you want the softest, smoothest, blemish free skin EVER... run to your nearest infusion center and get your chemo groove on!

It is the most bizarre thing ever.  Seriously, when I'm out I want to ask people to touch me.  I used to have what I called "chicken skin", I know so personal, but I hated those little bumps on the back of my arms.  Well let me tell you they are GONE!  I'm constantly telling Kevin to touch my skin because its so soft and smooth. Maybe now, I can move on from my stubble addiction to a new skin addiction. Who knew?


Dear friends, (so this is the post that I was working on yesterday)

Today is Tuesday which means that its been 5 days since chemo and I'm starting to "perk" up just a bit.  My issues today really have to do this "metal" mouth taste.  It doesn't matter what I eat, nothing tastes good.  You'd think this wouldn't be problem, but I insist on trying to continually eat things that don't satisfy me, but might "taste" good.  I'd be better off just NOT to eat.  If I could do that, I might actually lose the pounds that I've managed to put on in the last six weeks.  I'm doomed to be the largest cancer patient alive if I keep things up.

The other other thing that has been bothering me the last couple of days are the jitters.  I just haven't felt good in my own skin and I have also been suffering from some sort of roaring in my ears.  I feel like there is just a lot of excess noise going on.

And of course the biggy that past us by was Valentine's Day.  In truth, Valentine's Day IS NOT a biggy for us.  I always make sure that Hunter has class valentines and I have always made sure they have been hand made... that's just we crafters do when we can, but otherwise, its not a big deal in the Renz household.  I'd smack Kevin upside the head if he dared spend a horde of money on pretty red roses, that's just me.  If I felt really romantic, we might sneak out the day after and buy a box of chocolates on clearance, again, just the way I roll.

But, of course being in this new situation, Valentine's Day holds a symbolism that was hard not to fuss over.  It saddened me that I'm the sick valentine now and that it just doesn't seem fair that I've saddled the love of my life with this new version.  It didn't have anything to do with Valentine's Day, but this treatment has been very hormonal for me and I can't say what the difference is or why. (I'm better today)

Nate said to me just earlier that he loves me no matter if I had hair or not, if it was short or long.  He also said that it was sad that I had cancer and that chemo made me tired, but I'd get better soon.  For some reason too, Will came up to the bed earlier and cuddled up and said that my cancer made him sad.  He really hasn't verbalized much compared to Nate.

I / We will climb out of this and really, there's not much climbing to do... we don't get sunk too deep or get too lost, but its good to let the hang head low and breathe deep.

As always, I rest upon all of you when I'm tired and you help me so much during the lost times.  Thank you all!

Until next time.



I know this post has a lot... but here is a quick card that I made with Valentine's Day and Kevin in mind.  I chose these new colors that I got from Papertrey ink... an interesting combo.  I've been inspired by this wonderful blogger and her simple and clean style :)

(Everything used was PTI)


terriavidreader (IN-USA) said...

Sending prayers (by the tons) and good wishes your way.

Sue Ann said...

Hugs and Kisses. I really feel like you would benefit from seeing a doctor who practices Chinese Medicine in conjunction with your other doctors. The metal taste that you are writing about has to do with the lung energy which is our first line of defense against sickness ..... I bet they could give you an herb that would be okay with your meds but help the metal thing going on. it can also be that you need to make sure you are having plenty of yogurt to replace the stomach flora. I wish I lived there I would come over and give you a nice massage with all the points to help you out. Keeping you in my thoughts and prayers ALL the time!!! xoxoxo

Christi said...

Your strength and ability to so candidly share what you are going thru is so inspiring. Good for you for finding a silver lining in your smooth flawless skin. Keep positive thoughts on your mind. :o) Christi

Donna C said...

Katie, first, I am glad that the fog is lifting and your energy is up.
As for the metal taste, I have at times had reactions to medicines that make my tastebuds go off. I always found that salty foods (like soup with salty crackers)tasted more palatable. Are you allowed a little extra salt? Try it.
Despite the sadness of having your children express their sorrows, I think that it is wonderful that they are able to express their feelings. Keeping things bottled up is never a good thing.
So glad you share with us and our ears are helping.
Finally, I love Geny's work. Her style has alot of elements and color but it retains a simplicity as well.
See you here.

~Olga said...

Lovely card, I love nice and simple cards, the color combo is nice too. Good to hear your out of the Hospital and my Prayer are with you.

Audrey Frelx said...

What a pretty card!

Big, big hugs to you, sweetie!

JenMarie said...

You are continually on my heart...{HUGS} to you!
Lovely card!

Whimcees said...


It is so great to see your post and know that all is well! I love your card - the colors are so pretty!

Wishing you a good rest of the week! You and your family are in my prayers every day!


Barbara Diane Ramsey

Donna said...

Hi Katie, I'm glad to hear your 'fog' is lifting hun and wow you even managed to make a card so your definately coming back, its beautiful card too, I'm a big fan of CAS cards and love the colour. I'm glad to hear your kids are expressing their feelings to you, better than bottling things up. Keep getting stonger, I'll be popping back to hear how your doing, big hugs. Donna x

rooney said...

i love the color combo.

rooney said...

... and also am glad the fog is lifting. you sound like an excellent mom! your family is very blessed!

Becky Sorensen said...

Awesome card girlie and I know the jitters really got you this time and it will work its way through and I can't wait to feel ya tomorrow!! hahaha Each time you get chemo it is going to be different and we will work through it. You have an awesome husband in Kevin and he'll take any version of you there is!!
So, I will feel ya, I mean see you tomorrow!!! LOL

Joan B said...

Beautiful colors and the card is so sweet. Hugs and hopes for getting through this round of chemo.

Unknown said...

Katie, I look forward to reading your blog and can't wait for another post. I love your candor and transparency. I know being the "sick valentine" is no fun...I am one too. But we are blessed to have such wonderful caring husbands. I love your card, especially that it is not traditional valentine colors. You are in my prayers. Kathy

Kelly S. said...

Ohh I wish I had typed what I wanted to last time, but I changed my mind because I didn't want to sound like a kook, hee! I HAVE noticed your skin! I was going to tell you that even in your "foggy" picture (and many of your other ones) never ever look pale! You actually look kind of "glowy"! Must be your inner light shining through on even the bad days! So glad you are feeling better today, Katie!

Only By His Grace said...

Dear Katie!

My prayers are for you dear one.
I haven't commented on here before but have read your story. You have been so courageous.
I admire you very much.
Your card is simple and gorgeous. I love that heart tree and the colors you have used.
Hugs Maz

Anonymous said...

Hi Katie, just stopped by to see how life is treating you and how you are feeling. You are such an inspiration how you hold on to your zest for life, even if it lies low, you keep moving forward. I think it is amazing that you are sharing your experience with your paper crafting family and that you feel lifted up by everyone. You are in my prayers and thoughts, hugs to you and your family. Abby

Geny said...

I am so glad to hear you are coming out of "the fog" and feeling a bit better. I had a tough day today but am trying to adopt some of your positive attitude....and your mention of my blog made my day way better!! Thanks sweet girl, your card is just awesome!!

Anita said...

Beautiful card! I love reading your posts. I know that may sound weird but I have my own health challenges. It is good to hear someone express what I feel on some days. For us Valentines has changed, so we exchange fun singing stuff animals. I am allergic to flowers and can't have chocolate. Sending hugs!

Ted said...

You're never a burden to those who love you. So hush!

Stay strong... and thank you for the inspirational smile you put me on me today. :)

Anonymous said...

Katie - I was thinking about you today. My Bible has daily devotions written by faithful people from Mother Theresa to regular folk. Anyway - this lady was saying when she was going through cancer she was most scared there was no God. I thought of you. She realized in that moment God had come to her in the form of her husband to physically hold her and be with her. To learn to give her the shot to get her WBC up. To cheer her.
Well I say - God put us all here to cheer you on and BABY - WE GOT THIS!

Love you.

judy said...

Katie, so glad to hear that the fog
is lifting and you are feeling more
like yourself.

I experienced the metallic taste when I underwent chemo and found that mints and lemon drops help take it away temporarily. It is very bothersome and I understand the search to find the food that will make it go away. I think the steroids that are given for nausea
prevention are the culprit in feeling jittery. I hope that feeling will lessen soon.

Your strength and honesty are very
admirable! Take good care!!

Cheryl Arbo said...

I look forward to each and everyone of your posts. You are on my heart and mind every day. Lots of tender hugs and best wishes always for you. Your amazing!

Andrea6760 said...


Im so glad to hear that you are enjoying your 'new skin'! I had to giggle just a bit, because I knew exactly what you were talking about with the 'chicken skin'..LOL

Sorry about the metal mouth tastes and I wish I had a cure to share. Maybe try things you think will taste bad and they might taste better with a touch of metal on it? Just Kidding!!

On the serious side, you may want to jot these tiny things down and just check with your doctor or nurse to see if he/she has any tips to help with them. Even with the jittery feeling or noise in your ears. It cant hurt to just mention them, that is what they are their for, to help you, even with what you might think is small stuff. Its not a me, Ive worked in the healthcare field for over 30 years and they like sharing their knowledge. Please remember that the little things are important too!

Looks like Im rambling on again here, Sorry!!

I am keeping you in my thoughts and prayers and wish you my best for the rest of the week.


Debbie Nelson said...

Love your card...I am such a lover of all things PTI...quite an addiction, for sure. I am so happy to hear that you are starting to feel like yourself again...your children sound so caring and compassionate...I am so happy they can express their feelings about your cancer. I do understand how chemo benefits the skin...another perk from killing those cancer cells. I hope that you have a good week and will look forward to your next are so inspiring...hang in there and keep "Fighting Like a Girl"!!!

Trish said...

Hi Katie, this is the first time I have written to you. I have followed your journey since going to the link recommended by Jak. You are such an inspiration and I totally admire the way you are coping.
Firstly, I love your card- totally my thing as I'm a great lover of CAS cards and your colour combo is fab.
Just wanted to share with you something to help give you a happy thought (I hope)
My son & DIL had a little baby girl on sunday 13th feb, I am now a granny for the first time and delighted. But this happened against all odds as my son had testicular cancer approx 4 years ago and was so poorly. His wife also had polycystic ovaries and were told that the combo of both, the odds were against them having children. God had different plans for their lives and little KATIE is the proof that miracles still happen today.
Keep believing and we will keep praying for you.
Big hugs,
Trish xx

Dawn B. said...

Your card is beautiful.. I am sure he loved it. I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers. I have learned so much from your journaling.. I hope you have a better day today..hugs.

Gina said...

Lovely card Katie :D Just what true love should be, clean n simple. As for valentines, I'm with you. The day after hubby came home with a big box of choccies, not just reduced, but bought with a gift voucher from petrol purchases!! Gotta love em :D XXX

Pam~ said...

I'm with you Katie on buying Valentine's candy the day after which also happens to be my daughter's birthday. She's been known to have gotten a Valentine cake for her birthday. Are we bad parents or what? LOL Adorable card ... simple and so sweet!

Axes DesigNs said...

Hi Katie... late but I'm here... Happy Valentines.. in Mexico also is a Friends day! Amor y amistad! so I feel like if I know you ;) so don't give up.. be strong and never ever loose your faith.. God is with us .. :D

Curt in Indy said...

Hey Kiddo! Loved the post today. First with your skin getting soft and smooth. . .not all side effects are bad. Jay was going through an infusion treatment several months ago for an MS drug. His hair started turning darker and the grey started disappearing! Weird stuff huh? Just enjoy the good sides. . .you gotta take what you can get. Second, I just kept thinking this thought, and you know me, I say what I'm thinking. While I was reading the skin thing and the metal taste I thought about this. . .You know how people that care about you say "Oh, I wish I could go through some of this stuff for you"? I was thinking OK, I'll go for the soft skin and the metal taste to lose some weight! LOL Just trying to make you laugh Kiddo. . . Love the non-traditional colors for your Valentine's Day card to Kevin. I know he loved it. Those sweet kids saying that sweet stuff, were making me all weepy eyed! Little sweeties. Hugs to all of you. Best, Curt

Caroline said...

Gorgeous card Katie,
your words are very honest and inspirational, your words about this years Valentine day really touched me, keep being strong xxx

Susie W. said...

I was so glad to see your post Katie. I've been checking each day!
It's so good to see a card posted, too :) I love the color combo.
What a sweet family you have. And it's good to hear that your children are talking about your chemo. Much better to talk about it than keep everything "bottled" up.
As always, you and your family are in my prayers.

Hugs, Susie

Sparkly Pink Star said...

Your card is beautiful, feel better soon, hugs, Hannah :)

ameklus said...

I have been praying so much for you and your family. Hearing you describe the metallic taste in your mouth, feeling uncomfortable in your skin and the roaring in your ears, made me flash back to my nephew's 11 months of chemo. He had the exact same symptoms and he was an 11 year old boy. I remember him retreating to a bedroom during family birthday parties, to get away from the noise, that made the sound in his ears worse. I am going to ask him if he found anything to relieve any of those symptoms. Hang in there, and stay strong. I know it's tough! Your boys need you.
Love & hugs-
Annette Meklus

IamDerby said...

I never really know what to say... but know this: I think of you and say a prayer every day. I hope that your feeling better and you are able to enjoy your boys, your stamps, and your hubby. big big hugs!

Theresa Tyree said...

All the side effects you described brings back flashbacks of going thru chemo with Eric's mom. The worse part was the not feeling comfortable in your own skin. She would feel restless and not sleep. I think the doc prescribed her lorazapam (?) which helped her sleep.
I'm glad to see that you've actually gained weight. This is great! Prayers and love always.

Theresa Tyree said...

Forgot to say, enjoyed your creations. Seeing you create things means to me that you are feeling well enough to make something, kind of like a bit of normalcy in a sea of unfamiliarity. I hope you understand what I'm trying to say.

Dinahsoar said...

I'm with Will...cancer makes me sad too. Hang in there kiddo. I know it's hard but we are all rooting for you...cheering you on, hoping and praying that soon you will be healed, well and whole.

Claire said...

I am glad you are feeling a bit more with it again. Your children are amazing with their love and understanding. Hope you have some nice times together over the next few days. How is your planning for your Disney visit going? We went to Disneyland Paris last year and it was really magical for my kids and they loved it, wish I could see it through their eyes. We went to Cafe Mickey one evening for dinner and it was fab as lots of the characters come round to your table and the kids were in awe. Take care x

Wanda said...

Imfusion counter: Is that a name of something? I'll check it out because as we get older too, our skin dries so badly. So sorry you are having to deal with this cancer and the treatments. I know your children are very sad to see you go through this too. They are special. Good luck to you in your future treatments and I'm praying it all disappears.

StephH said...

Your post over on the PTI forum brought a big smile to my face Katie. Though I see from your blogging that life is tough right now, please find comfort in knowing you are an inspiration to those who know you and those, like me, who only know you from the PTI forum. Love to see that you created for V-day! I hope that simple card brought much joy - to you both.♥♥♥

Julia Aston said...

I'm so glad you are able to find good things (soft skin!) in all that is going on with you Katie - a positive attitude is SO important - I truly believe your attitude can contribute to your well being - and it's so much better than just giving in I expect.... happy to see your lovely card too! Thinking of you and praying for you today!

Mrs. Nancy G said...

Big HUGS Katie. If only they would make you well.

Holly aka Toy said...

Hi Katie.
I've been following your journey and praying for you and your family. I have been a bit sick, myself, these last couple weeks. I just popped over to see that you have not posted in awhile. I'm hoping and praying that means you are busy with your family and enjoying life.

Be blessed, girl.

Lee said...

Sending Huge Hugs to all from across the pond as they say.Always in our thoughts.Love Lee from UK.xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Mary Friederichsen said...

You and your Family continue to be in my prayers! With all of us crafters praying for you I am positive that the Lord will hear us,and if nothing else will heal you and give you comfort just to shut us up!!LOL

Hang in there Katie! Easier said than done I am sure. But we are all praying for you!
Blessings and Hugs,

Mary said...

I remember some of the things you are talking about from when my youngest son had cancer. He said "never eat your favorite food because you will never like it again after chemo, eat toco bell because it always tastes the same, go for texture of food not taste." Hope some of that helps you out, He was 12 when he had cancer he is now 19 and cancer free. We wish the same for you.
sending you hugs & prayers

Mary said...

Oh and he had the best skin ever too.

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