Growing Pains

Hello All! Hope everyone is doing well. I am really excited that it is the year 2011. Why do you ask? Because whenever I use to talk about Joel's chemo people would always ask "well when will you all be done?" When it was the year 2010 I would always have to answer "sometime next year". Mentally "sometime next year" seemed like a really long way away. Now I can answer "later this year". I know it is the smallest thing & I know it is a mental thing-but for me it's a big thing & I am happy about it. Also, just knowing that we are 2 chemo cycles from the half-way point is a big deal. At the start everything seemed to be moving in sloooooooow motion. It is funny that when you want life to slow down it moves at an all too fast pace yet when you want it to move quickly it moves all too slowly. I still feel like in the last 6 months we have lived 10 years worth of life! It is odd-I look at old pictures of myself (& by old I mean 6 months or older) & I do not even recognize that girl. Obviously I don't mean physically but these 6 months have just changed us both so radically that I feel like I don't even know who that person is any more. For me a big part of this journey has been understanding the new person that I have become. I feel like there are so many ways in which I have changed & few ways in which I remain the same. For a long time even doing some of the small things that I use to love to do felt like a betrayal to who I have become. Does that make any kind of sense? I am not sure if it does & I don't really know how to explain it. I guess I have just felt like I am trying so hard to learn & grow from this journey that going backwards in any way seems like this process would all be in vain. But little by little I am allowing myself to do some of the old things that I use to do & not allowing myself to feel bad about it. In doing so I have found that I have so much more of an appreciation for it now. Maybe it's because I don't take any gift, any moment, or any experience for granted anymore. I am not sure. Either way I feel that in May everything was shattered & thrown to the ground in a million pieces & each day I am moving farther & farther away from that even while still in the midst of it.  I am learning about this new person & who she is. Even though in many ways I would like to go back to how life was before all of this I really am glad that I am not that person anymore. I think I am liking this new girl a little better. Is it worth the pain that it has taken to get there? I think that's just life & what it is about & simply put it is about a journey.

Joel has chemo cycle #8 this coming Tuesday. This is the last cycle in which he will be using a chemo drug that we affectionately call the "fruit punch" because of its red color. They will be discontinuing this drug because one's heart can only take so many cycles of it & cycle #8 appears to be the magic number. We will be going to Houston in the next few weeks & Joel's doctor will tell us what new drug he has decided to replace it with. It is our hope that the new drug will be easier on his body. He has really been struggling with nausea & I hope that improves for him. It is miserable for me to watch him be miserable for 2 weeks straight. They finally just gave him a sedative & said "here you go-sleep it off for 2 weeks!" I guess that's better than being sick.

I wanted to let you guys know that I am going to try to start doing a better job at blogging. At the beginning of this blog I use to write once a day. That was very time consuming but I made the time to keep everyone up to date since everything was changing so rapidly. Now that things have stabilized there's no need to blog as often. My goal now is to get back to blogging at least twice a week. 1 of the blogs will probably be "inspirational" or "soul searching" in nature & the other will be more of a health update on Joel.

For those of you who know Joel well you will find this funny. Joel was just flipping through the TV channels & stumbled upon a show called "Extreme Couponing" & is now watching intently as I blog. Never in a million years did I think that there were people out there who were worse than him!!! I hope now that he is not inspired to take his "deal searching" to an all new level but there is no mistaking the wonder that I see in his eyes as we speak-ha ha. Oh no.......he just looked at me & said "Baby we need to start doing more coupons-are you with me????" Ok so I am now being kicked off the computer so he can look online for coupons....better go.

Have a wonderful evening & enjoy the rest of your weekend folks!