Be Rockin’ Chemo #4!

My heart is singing? Can you hear? I definitely make a joyful noise.

Mom had her fourth chemotherapy session at the cancer clinic today. This is four of six and about four weeks after her surgery.

Mom was connected with the pain management specialist in Vtown today and she worked a miracle. (Before I carry on, did you know that most towns have one. You don’t need to live in pain when you are battling cancer!). Anyways, Miss Miller is a nurse as well as a cancer survivor. Today she swooped in like Mary Poppins with her suitcase full of pain and nausea prevention ideas. She said she has even more tricks in her bag if this first plan doesn’t work!

Oh but I think it already is. Here is mom and I hanging out tonight:

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Doesn’t my mama look great! She says tomorrow she wants me to shave her head. She is tired of having her hair all over her pillow. Yeah- she ain’t tired from being in pain.

Miracles occur every day!

Filled with gratitude. Filled with love from my bible study sisters Filled with hope.

Be Having Our First Ski of the Season 2013

We had an absolutely stellar morning on Sunday. It is incredible to be skiing together as a family. JC leading the way. CC skiing on his own and being pulled behind the Chariot. OC enjoy his snacks and watching his brothers under his blankies wearing a pair of snow boots he wasn’t too sure about.

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Spontaneous pictures before we started off:

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Zipping down the hills:

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Going down the Jungle Trail. CC’s first time. He was wondering if the tiger was real. Nope they are all painted cardboard sweetie!

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JC and I even ventured through the fresh powder to hit the animal trails. We even saw some tracks. Does this look like rabbit?

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One last look at the ski:

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After the ski, we went to visit mom and dad. Here’s what I wrote after visiting them.

Life is about sun and darkness, health and illness, and living life with every privilege, challenge and blessing we are given.

Be Driving In Between

That drive between the new city and our old town is truly spectacular.

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the sun sets off to my side as I’m heading south.

i can see deep blue green lakes and mountains near and far.

the purple sky, blue skies, the red skies, orange skies.

the orchards, the trees, the snow on the mountaintops.

BUT my soul is filled with anguish as I leave my mom, as I drive back to my ‘new’ life.

BUT my heart is with my mama, my mama in pain, my mama lying, my mama sick and unable to live her life.

My mama My mama My mama.

Life is such a dichotomy – beauty is all around me in all of God’s creation. I am amazed by the nature that I see surrounding me as I drive.

BUT my heart aches, my heart is broken, tears fall, big huge crocodile tears fall down my cheeks

BUT I pray and I hope and I sit in my pain in the presence of God’s beautiful creation amidst the pain.

Mom was in so much pain today that she couldn’t be touched. All she could handle was a quick kiss on the cheek by the boys. I gave her a kiss on the forehead and it was like I could feel the pain emanating from your body.

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Peace Mama. Peace!

Be Decorating for Christmas

We started our Christmas decorating today. It was a team effort.
Sexy Neck had the idea of wrapping a picture. He helped me balance the lights in the mantle and tried to figure out a few Christmas carols on the piano by ear. (How does he do that?)
JC helped with the garland, bows and lights.
CC helped with the advent calendar.
OC picked out the Christmas books.

All the boys drew Christmas pictures and put the wise men downstairs to start their journey to our nativity scene in Bethlehem our kitchen. The shepherd is on the upper shelf because he was on the hills above Bethlehem when the angels visited him. (At least that’s what the boys told me.)

Welcome to our home:

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I love Christmas! It gets more and more interesting and exciting as our traditions evolve.

Our traditions:
We have our gingerbread dough in the fridge ready to make men. My mom started decorating gingerbread men when JC was wee!

We have an advent calendar that the boys get a small ornament and chocolate each of the twenty-four days before Christmas.

We have a nativity scene where baby Jesus arrives on Christmas Day and the three kings/wisemen arrive in January.

We decorate with lots of lights to take away the winter darkness.

We hang our stockings. This is the first year we have a fireplace mantle to hang them on. We actually have a two-sided fireplace so we had to have a discussion on where they should go. My mom made the stockings.

Do you have any traditions to share?

May you enjoy a restful, peaceful and beautiful advent/Christmas season.

Be Bike Riding in -10 degrees Celsuis

We’ve had a few hurdles to overcome lately! Do you get that impression?

One of our barriers to jump over has been our cars. More than once in the last few months, I have left my interior light on which has cause my battery to die. Just over a month ago, right before my mom’s surgery in Vancouver, my husband was in a car accident.

This morning we woke up with my husband’s car leaking fluid, probably related to the accident. He then was planning on taking my car, but my car had a dead battery! With stealth speed and a positive attitude, he managed to maneuver his car into position, jump my car and then get to work! Whew!

This left me to first bike ride JC to school, then down the other way to CC’s preschool and now back home. We will do everything in reverse in about an hour.

We did it all with a smile on our faces in the -10° weather.

Here are the boys ready to go:

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Here I am on the path to CC’s preschool. CC and OC are in the chariot bike trailer.

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All I could thing about as I rode was mom’s words as she walked out of the hospital yesterday and she breathed in the cool crisp air: “ahhhh, that feels good!” I agree Mom!

Be Missing School

Last Wednesday, JC woke up with a bit of a fever, I kept him home!

It was a PJ, truck playing, leaf gathering, door jam hanging, hockey equipment wrestling kind of day.

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Today, Nana is getting sprung from the hospital so we are going for a visit.

When deciding on what to do, I often ask myself, “When (insert name of son) is eighteen years old, is this going to matter?”.

A whole day with his brothers and now a day with Nana and Papa, yup these days matter! Sorry school!

Be In the Light In The Darkness

On Sunday night, I drove in tears to the hospital with the full moon as my guide. Even though I wanted desperately to see how my mom was doing, I stopped by the side of the road to admire the beautiful full moon.

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Today, I had the extreme privilege of driving mom home from the hospital in the beautiful full sun.

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It was an excruciating week, but one where God’s light was so evident.
– we ended up back on the Women’s and Children’s hospital ward. Mom knew all the nurses but one.
– Dr. Daniels is back on mom’s case as her gynocologist. She hasn’t gone on maternity leave yet so we are grateful.
– Mom finally got her diagnosis yesterday. It is stage 3 ovarian.
– my sister, M, was here for a visit on the weekend and was instrumental in getting mom to the hospital. She is a force! She was able to stay until late Monday night.
– Mom had a blood transfusion while she was in the hospital and is getting stronger.
– Mom’s pain is finally under control
– Mom does not have an infection from the surgery
– Mom is eating

As I reflect on these past four days, I am amazed at how I have seen God working. On Sunday morning, I felt God gave me a new word to explore. Can you guess the word? Light! We also started a new bedtime prayer (Genesis1:16)with the boys: God made two great lights–the greater light to govern the day and the lesser light to govern the night. He also made the stars.

Do you see a theme? I love how God works. I am holding onto His light because this sure is a dark and painful time for my mama, my family and our friends.

Mom on Sunday:

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Mom today:

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Mom is suppose to have chemotherapy #4 on Monday. We will see what unfolds! In His hands we rest and wait.