Monday, May 31, 2010

How do you fish?


I wonder how it feels to walk on stilts?


And have a long neck.


I bet it makes for easier fishing.


Then again. . .


Furry Fox


When I went through chemotherapy I was given a regimen called Folfox for the first few treatments. Since I was having some problems with toxicity my regimen was changed to Folfiri. Chemo was no fun at all, not just side effects from the drugs, but also the mental struggle with putting poisons in my body to kill the cancer cells - Cancer, that thing that happens to other people, not me.

While I was going through the infusion, which lasted 48 hours, I could not live my days in denial of my diagnosis, that IV tubing running to the pump hanging on my side was a huge reality-filled slap in the face. During those days I would often break down and cry, wail at the unfairness and swear that I could not make it through any more of it.

I would get a 2 week break in between infusions, and the first week was spent trying to regain my strength and trying to start eating again. The second week was spent giving myself mental encouragement to go through one more treatment. I would tell myself, ". . .just go through one more treatment, it's ok to stop but get as many as you can, I know 12 treatments is a lot, but you can do it. Come on, do ONE more."

And it worked, I was able to psych myself up one treatment at a time. It was too hard to think in terms of six months of treatment. I had to take it one cycle at a time.

Did you get it? Aren't I lame?  FolFOX + FolFIRI = Furry Fox LOL

~ You can see the explanation behind this project by going here or see the all posts in this category by going here. ~

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Frilly Macro Monday


I almost forgot I had taken some photos while at my parents' last month. They had things blooming everywhere and so many critters. About time I emptied the card on my camera I guess, lol.


These were taken with the little point and shoot. I only took my 400mm lens with me on the big camera so any macros I did with the little guy.


Macro Monday is easy to play, snap a macro (or any close-up) photo, post it on your blog and come back here and sign Mr Linky. Don't forget to visit each other. :)

Point of View


It's important to look at a situation from all directions and not accept a cookie cutter response.  An oncologist will say that cancer and chemo will behave differently in each person's body, yet they have one set of procedures for each kind of cancer.  They don't always remember to keep the uniqueness of the individual in mind when planning a treatment and follow-up.  This is where it becomes very important for you to speak up and remind them.  You are your own best advocate!

~ You can see the explanation behind this project by going here or see the all posts in this category by going here. ~

Saturday, May 29, 2010





I love watching the leaves emerge in the spring. But I was really amazed that my big rose bushes did not survive the winter, yet this little one, the kind you usually keep in the house, woke back up. Very odd.

Hanging onto Hope


Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. ~Albert Einstein

~ You can see the explanation behind this project by going here or see the all posts in this category by going here. ~

My Year 5 Project


A few days ago I started a project without really explaining what I'm doing and I thought it might be helpful to explain a little bit.  Every evening I am posting a photo I took that day and I hope to be talking a little bit about what I'm going through in this momentous year.  I plan on doing this every day for one year, the final day will be my 5 year mark from the end of chemo, a day in which I have about a 25% shot of being alive for.

I want to celebrate beating the statistics that doctors have laid out.  I do not want to bring anybody down, or make them feel sorry for me.  Honestly, I feel good.  But also, honestly, I am terrified that I won't complete my task, but hopeful that I will.

I don't like being a downer and I try to keep away from pity parties, this is a way for me, an outlet, to express how I'm feeling and I think it's really needed.

My husband is 100% on board with me doing this and being very encouraging.  But today I had a little meltdown as I shared with him that this is almost too much.  I don't dwell on the down side of the cancer and by celebrating each day I'm still alive it also makes me think about my chances and that's just something I don't do that much.  I think I'm like many survivors in that I stuff what I'm feeling, I put on a happy face and think that the happy feelings will follow and they usually do.

One thing I have not really done in my whole cancer experience is allow myself to feel and explore all of my feelings and I know it's something I should have done a long time ago.  I did see a specialist for one visit shortly after diagnosis, this person specialized in talking to people in my predicament and she advised that I needed to talk about my feelings, to not stuff them.  Yet stuff them is what I'm good at and already, just a few days into this project I am having a hard time expressing myself.

I fear that people will see me as whining or weak.  But I need this for me.  And where better to do it than on my blog.  I've fallen into the habit of sharing photos of my world, but keeping my feelings to myself and I want to break that, I need to break that.

So, I guess what I'm trying to tell you is that over the next year I will have good and bad days, hopefully more of the former than the later, but I need to express myself.  And you don't have to read this if you don't want to.  I'm ok with that.  I will still be doing my regular postings in the mornings and these will be posted in the evenings, whenever I get around to it, lol.

If you do read these posts, please bear with me as I find my voice again.  I am determined to follow through in this because I believe it will be very cathartic. And I would appreciate you sharing your thoughts/feelings with me too along the way. YOU helped me get through my diagnosis and treatment, every step of the way and I need your help to get to this next goal too.

As a little side note, I hesitated to share my last oncologist visit with you.  In my goal of keeping my blog a positive place I have also been keeping you all at arm's length.  I'm scared right now, boy that's hard to put out there.  I have to see the gastroenterologist next week for a consult leading up to another colonoscopy.  No fun, I assure you!

When I used the word cathartic to my husband I wasn't positive it was saying what I wanted it to so I looked it up to verify that I had my definition correct and found it to be: 1. of or pertaining to catharsis and 2. also, cathartical, evacuating the bowels ~ we had a great laugh over that one and I hope you do too!  But then we had to look at catharsis and viola, there it is: the purging of emotions or relieving of emotional tensions, especially through a work of art.

Exactly!  There it is!  My Year 5 Project is my catharsis, photography is a work of art, no?

You can see all the posts in the project by going here.

Friday, May 28, 2010

The Enchanting Snakebird


I hope you're not tired of the Anhinga because I was really enamored by them! They're also referred to as the Snakebird because of their habit of only having the head above water while fishing.


I loved watching them sun, so beautiful all spread out like that!



I love their little puffy heads!


And their modest splash of color amongst the black and white.



Truly incredible birds!



Camera Critters

Rare and Magnificent


The pink ladyslipper (Cypripedium acaule) is one of Wisconsin’s wild orchids and I suppose it can be found in several places throughout the state. But there's only one place I've seen it. One place I go back to every year to see it again and it never disappoints. So today, I'm thankful for things I can count on, things that are rare, and things that may take a little effort to find but when found lift the spirits up.

~ You can see the explanation behind this project by going here or see the all posts in this category by going here. ~

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Adrianna's First Coach Purse


Remember how I said Addy is a girly girl? Of course you do, that was just yesterday, lol. Well, one day, PaPaw got a bug up his butt that the little precious one year old needed a Coach purse. So off we went to find one. Do you know that they don't really make small purses for one year olds?


We did find a coin purse that looked to be about the right size for her, so we brought it home. How many 1 year olds do you know with $70 purses? Think she might be spoiled?


She loves it! And she knows how to carry it!



See, she's sitting ON the reflector, poor little princess can't sit on the grass.


And I guess you could say brother is all boy. He didn't even want to touch the purse. Pretty funny considering when we gave Addy the purse he wanted one too, lol.


PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecilyand Mamarazzi

Perfect Time of Year


Finally the days are warm and the potatoes are coming up. French fried, baked, mashed, julienned ~ I've never met a potato I didn't like!  How do you like yours?


PS - Which photo do you like better? I couldn't decide. . .

~ You can see the explanation behind this project by going here or see the all posts in this category by going here. ~

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Our Girly Girl


My precious granddaughter is all girl! She loves flowers!


Even tries to eat them, lol.


She's willing to share.


She's a little easier to photograph than her brother, it's just getting her to look.


She loves her puppy! Often you'll find her napping on him, and he doesn't mind at all.


She loves dresses and sparkles too. She's a very girly girl!


SO much of a girl that when she sees the reflector, she thinks it's her spot to sit, lol. She was sitting on the gold side here, can you tell?


But she hasn't quite figured out the idea of blowing dandelions, lol.


The 4th butterfly


When you're told T3N2M0 in connection with a cancer diagnosis you get scared, well, once you figure out exactly what that means you get scared.  When you read that this scoring means you have a 20-30% chance of being alive in 5 years you get determined!  And when you are sitting in that chair getting butterfly #4 on your survivor tattoo project you begin to truly have hope!  Today is the 1st day of the last year working towards that big 5 and I'm going to beat those odds!

~ You can see the explanation behind this project by going here or see the all posts in this category by going here. ~