Two things I Said I'd Never Do

wig #1

How to make a long story a short one?
I have been here with this problem before.
I'll go back to the end of June.
My blogging absence began with a weak feeling, one that left me able to accomplish a only a simple small task before seeking the refuge of the couch, the bed. It was bad and I knew something was wrong but my mind refused to go there. My tumor marker numbers were good so I must be ok, just weak from the experience, healing from the graft. That's what I kept saying. When I feel bad I tend to shut off from the world instead of looking outside for help so I didn't really let on to anyone except Kelly and a few friends what was going on.
Fast forward a few weeks and I am in the hospital for an eight day stay. Infection in my skin graft area. Then the news that the cancer is still there. What? I was in shock. My world was reeling for a while, the breath knocked out of me. There were no more funds for going back to Mexico or to any other alternative health clinic. I was faced with triple negative breast cancer in my lymph nodes and in my chest. So…I prayed about it and I cried.
And then thankfully I found peace.
I decided to do the first thing I said I would never ever do and that was chemotherapy. It helps having a team of doctors that I absolutely adore and trust. The chemotherapy has in a way been easier than I imagined and in another much tougher.
The hair loss broke my spirit for a while. Then I ended up at the American Cancer Society for the free wig. I joked with a friend, how nice can a free wig be? I went in with low expectations but I shouldn't have. Not only was I treated like royalty there to the point of bringing out tears but there were tubs and tubs of wigs to select from. I tried on 4 or 5 and then saw the dark long hair. ohhh! my heart soared. I had long hair when I first met Kelly. Turns out that some kind soul had just donated a new human hair wig. And well, I love it.
It is heavy and hot but I feel good in it.
And then I have another wig which is not human hair and which I was told last night looks like a wig...ouch....I will photograph that one later.
Sometimes I just wear a scarf or little soft hat. The other night I went walking in our neighborhood with my bare bald head and the light breeze on my scalp felt so relaxing. Of course it was dark and the roads were absent of people but I am working up to bare.
Finally. Finally I can see my strength again.
Finally I am feeling like myself again.
The doctors are pleased with how I am doing. My tumor marker number is dropping and my wound is healing so much that it looks like I may not be needing another graft.
I am still doing my natural treatments. Still meditating and visualizing. So all is wonderful really.

The other thing I said I wouldn’t do is send Olivia to school. Homeschooling was so perfect for us but we made the decision when I was in the hospital and things were looking bad. The up side to this is that she is loving it. Simply in heaven with it! It's a small school near our home. Today is her fourth day there. "Disco Day," she said and she dressed very sparkly this morning...

I haven't adjusted yet to her not being here. I don't know what to do with myself...when I clean out the mess that is the art room I am sure I will figure it out though.


Valaine said...

You look beautiful. Olivia is so brave! You must be very proud of her?
I've missed seeing your art, and I am sorry that you are going through this
rough journey. I pray that it will soon be the past, and you are completely healed.

smith kaich jones said...

First of all, you both look beautiful & brave. Second, I am loving that wig. My very best friend in the whole world has dealt with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma for the last 17 years or so, and each time it shows back up, the treatments are much improved. I am so glad that it has been a bit easier than you'd expected. Third, my niece regularly donates her hair for wigs - she is 12 and has wild, wild, WILD, curly blondish brown hair and has been doing this since she was about 6. I have a grown up friend who donates hair also - straight and very dark brown, very long. It makes me smile to see you so gorgeous in this picture, and who knows? Perhaps it is my friend's way of telling you she cares, that you will be all right. I'm thinking it to be true!

Love to you and Miss Olivia who looks like she will soon be trouble, ma'am, all decked out so yummy & gorgeous!!


Regina said...

so glad you have the energy to blog again!
What a blessing to get that wig! You look great on the photo.
God bless you & may healing flow through your body.

Jo Wholohan said...

i have missed you and your beautiful art tricia, thinking of you and hope it is soon in the past xx

Relyn said...

Oh, Tricia. I am so glad you are back. I've been thinking of you. Praying for you. First, you are so gorgeous with that long dark hair. But. Your bone structure is so beautiful that I'm sure you will be one of those annoyingly beautiful women how can even be gorgeous bald. You have a lovely face and cheekbones to inspire envy.

As to sending Olivia to school, if she is happy, you know you made the right decision. I know you miss her. I am so very glad you have raised such a wonderful young lady. The kind of child who adjusts to all these new struggles so well. A girl who knows who she is and that she is loved. The love and time and commitment you've given her is what makes her strong. Yes? What makes you all strong.

Sending you much love.

Susan said...

You look just like a hippie chick with that long dark hair. It suits you. Glad to know you are dealing with all this in a positive way. By the way, I have been told for years that my natural hair looks like a wig. So if you ever hear that phrase again, remind your self you must look "too good to be real". Take care. Susan

Kelly Snelling_Soulhumming.typepad.com said...

sending prayers of light and healing to you. your hair will come back as beautiful as ever and here's hoping your cancer NEVER comes back, not a shred, not a tiny microscopic blip. when i had cancer it was very hard to open up and let people in. but when i did, it was the biggest blessing to me. it also blessed my friends to be able to DO something to try to help. so if/when you are ready, let all those who love you help however they can. for me, i needed to find as much power, strength and love as i possibly could from the experience. Lord knows we all need to find the silver lining when we hear those awful words about cancer. many blessings to you.

Anonymous said...

You look so amazing! Oh how I have missed you!

You are so brave and strong... just reading your words helps me to be a stronger person.

Don't be too hard on yourself for having to change your path...
If there is only one thing that strength gives us, it is the ability to take life's changes head on, and realize that what worked so well yesterday may not be what is best for today...

My heart is always with you...


Amy said...

All best wishes to you Tricia. I am glad you are able to talk about it all. I am here to listen and support.
You look beautiful, as always, by the way!!!!!

Pilar said...

Dear One, you look like a beautiful Pre-Raphaelite heroine in this picture. It is so good to hear from you here and thank you for sharing your story with us. You have been in my heart and prayers. I sent you a little care package at the end of last week so I hope you will receive it soon. Be well my friend and give a holler if you need anything!xoxoxoxoxo

Anonymous said...

You are so very beautiful, inside and out! I am sending you good thoughts and prayers.

Anonymous said...

My thoughts are with you. Thank you for sharing your story with all of us. Keep writing... we are all here for you. :o) Kyra ¥

vintage moon studio said...

I have been thinking of you lately, missing your posts and most of all, your beautiful art. I love the photo... you are just lovely with that fabulous long hair! Sending love and healing thoughts... xox Deb

Anonymous said...

You make that wig look good!

My prayers are for a miraculous cure for you!


Gloria McAllister
Roanoke, VA

* mY fRiEnDs cALL mE Rella * said...

I kept vigil....not knowing what was wrong, really. Keeping positive thoughts strong....and missing your presence. Here you are back with strength to share with us. Bless your beautiful spirit...and your husband, and your darling Olivia. xo
You look like a beautiful and wise gypsy with that sweet long wig.

Love to you, Pet, love and strength, and continued peace.
xox RElla