Brilliant. Simply Brilliant!!!

I got an idea from a friend yesterday on Facebook.  She’s actually a friend in real life too – amazing but true, I know. 🙂  Anyway, she had posted a photo of a paper someone had put out for their kids.

It said:

1-11-13

Simply said, I LOVE THIS!!!!

Let me be honest here.  I love technology.  At work, I’m one of the geeks.  If my office door is open, I will frequently have people coming into my office asking for help with some computer issue or another.  I have fun with it, and am really glad they feel comfortable asking.  So I can be totally understanding when it comes to my kids wanting to use the computer and being online.  It’s fun after all!

Lately I was thinking that I wanted to monitor things a little better for my kiddos.  I mean, I am their mom.  It’s their dad’s and my job to make sure that they grow up to be well balanced human beings that contribute well to society.  In light of that, I just thought that unlimited access to the internet at all times is probably not a good idea.  I contemplated shutting off the router at night, but that would affect me too, and I’ll be honest, sometimes I would have to work late, so that option wasn’t very viable.  But what to do?

Fast forward to yesterday.  I think this idea may make a huge difference in our household.  At this point, I’m planning to have a list of chores that they will need to do for that day.  They most likely will change from day to day, but will always include having their homework done! 🙂  I suspect we will get a little push-back from them, but the fact is, I’m the mom.  Period.  End of story.  We are truly not doing this to be mean, we just want what’s best for our kids.  I know they’re not going to think this is cool, and perhaps we will be hated a while for it.  Time will tell.

Oh, and for the record?  I changed the master password that’s printed on the back of the router so they can’t go in there and make changes on their own.  Yup.  I’m the mom. 🙂

2012 in review

I thought this would be a fun post to have for those of you out there that want a very quick year in review of my blog. 🙂

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

4,329 films were submitted to the 2012 Cannes Film Festival. This blog had 14,000 views in 2012. If each view were a film, this blog would power 3 Film Festivals

Click here to see the complete report.

Reflections of 2012

I don’t know about you all, but for me, I can’t help but think of the past at Christmastime.  Grandparents that I’ve lost, homes I’ve lived in over the years, my children as babies.  This time of year seems to breed nostalgia.  Of course having all the Christmas songs going in the background probably contributes quite a bit as well.

When I think back on this whole year, I realize I have seen a lot.  Had you told me that I would battle a life threatening disease and win, I probably would have tried everything I could do to stop time and keep it from happening.  I don’t think that would have worked though. 🙂

Just last Sunday I found out that another cancer warrior I know has only a short time left here.  That makes 2 in the last 7 days with just a couple months of life to live.  Of the 5 people I know that were diagnosed within 1-3 months of me, my Aunt Judy & I seem to be the only ones that are winning our fights.  Two others have gone to be with Jesus, and then this one I heard about on Sunday.  Cancer is so unfair.  These other friends deserve to live too!!

I guess what I’m saying is, don’t take life for granted.  It sounds so cliche to say this, that I almost didn’t.  But really, unless you’ve fought this fight, you can’t totally understand.  Now I get the meaning of, “Don’t sweat the small stuff…and it’s all small stuff.”  Take advantage of the time here and don’t waste it.

Smile more.  Laugh more.  Get upset less.  Realize that it really doesn’t matter that you didn’t get the close parking place at the store – be thankful that you can walk the distance.  Hug your kids.  Kiss your spouse.  It’s ok if the dishes sit in the sink.  Go to bed if you’re tired.  Don’t try to work yourself into an early grave.  It’s really not important.  Done is better than perfect.  Enjoy life.  Pray more.  Worry less.  Trust.

Past & Future

Photo courtesy of Mark Ylen, Ylen Photography

The Results Are In!

No, I am NOT referring to the 2012 Election!  Although those results are in as well.  I’m not going to go any further on that though, because I know those of you who read my blog came here to find out how my PET scan went.

For those of you interested in what’s been going on in my life lately, I’ve been busy at home, trying to adapt myself into “Survivor” mode.  Anyone who has faced the monster otherwise known as “cancer” can vouch that getting to the end of treatment has it’s ups & downs.  I’m so happy that I don’t have to have chemo again anytime soon!  Yahoo!  Forever now though, will be the nagging feeling of knowing that with each follow up appointment I have, my life could change on a dime.

But enough of that – on to the good news!  My PET scan came back clear – PET Negative is the term they use in oncology world.  Thank you God for the results and thank you Dr. Sharman for being His hands through this ordeal.  Here’s the image of my scan:

 

The dark areas are all normal places like the brain, heart, kidneys, intestines & bladder.  What’s missing are the small, bulb-like lymph nodes and the large mass to the left of my heart (left when you’re looking at the picture, that is) lighting up to show that they are cancerous.  No lights, no cancer detected!  Below is a picture of my FIRST PET scan so you can see the difference:

 

 

So there you have it.  I’m cleared for takeoff – or recovery that is.  Please be praying for me and our family as we learn to adjust to this new pattern of life again.

For those of you wondering, at this point, I’m planning to officially head back to the office in January, but until then, I will be starting to work again as I can from home.  I’ve had many nights lately when I haven’t gotten much sleep at all, so starting back full steam would probably not be a good idea.  There are days that I am still very tired.  I guess I can say recovery is a slow process but I’m glad to be in it!  So feel free to approach me with real estate questions or transactions.  I’m so blessed to have had my friend Cathy Rackham help me with my clients through the past 6 months.  I’m reminded of something she said to me today – “You have the BEST clients!  They’re all so nice!”  I’m proud to work for all of you.  So feel free to call or text me at 541-974-5550 or email me at kdsmith@kw.com.  I’ll hook you up with a great house! 😉

Better Than I Deserve

Some days it seems like words just flow while other days I feel stuck in my writing, but I felt it important to update all of you who care about me and my family.

It’s almost as if I’ve been waiting for the hammer to fall. Waiting for that moment when I start feeling horribly rotten again. The weird thing is, it hasn’t happened like it has in the past. Now, I’m not saying I haven’t had any side effects, because I have, but they have mercifully been so much easier. I definitely got cranky yesterday though 🙂 and naps have been a daily occurrence lately.

I have to believe that it is because of all the prayers going up on our behalf, but also, maybe partly because I know this is it! There are no more chemo sessions in my future. Yes, I go for hydration treatment tomorrow, but that’s going to be my last IV for a while. I am really excited about that!

Thank you all for yummy meals and coveted prayers. Onward to health!

The End Is Here!

It’s official.  I am done with chemotherapy!!!!

I’m tired, and a little bit uninspired as writing goes – which is normal for after chemo feelings.  I brought an entourage with me today: Mom, Tom and my sister Andrea.  Joanne was my nurse today, she & Shawna have been my main nurses throughout this journey.  It has been such a blessing having nurses that care about you taking care of you.  I can’t say enough positive things about Willamette Valley Cancer Institute oncology nursing staff.  Almost makes me want to go into nursing…almost. 🙂

It’s also been amazing to have a doctor with the same faith as you.  Having Dr. Sharman as my doctor has been meaningful because I know that not only do I have a doctor that is beyond gifted in the medical field, but he has the Great Physician on his side.  To know that he is going to the One that is the Healer for guidance.  Thank you Dr. Sharman for your care.

All the support I have had during this 6 month journey has been overwhelming.  It’s difficult to remember who all has done and given what.  At least with the mealtrain.com website, I can go back for the past few months and figure out who all has brought us meals. 🙂  I can’t begin to tell you about my mom though.  She has pretty much rewritten her spring, summer, & fall to make sure that I would have transportation to and from all my appointments.  This has allowed us to have some good one-on-one time that I will treasure forever.  Now to figure out how to continue it, because I do not want to go through this again! 🙂

Thank you all for the prayers and support.  I’m going to close for tonight because both kids have Health speeches to finish (before tomorrow of course!) and they need my help.  And right now, I’m thinking clearly enough to be able to help them, so that is QUITE an opportunity for them!

 

Joanne and Me – the END of Chemotherapy!

‘Twas The Night Before Chemo

‘Twas the night before chemo
And all through the house,
The mama was blogging
About her next bout…

Of chemo and steroids
And nausea meds and fluids
She wondered and wondered
Just how she’d get through it.

She thought about how
This was the last time
She’d ride that bad ‘coaster
Of sickness and find

Herself feeling groggy
Each moment awake
Or nauseous and dizzy
Instead, she would think

Of her strength returning
And feeling brand new
Of thinking all clearly
And losing weight too.

She thought about how
God had brought her through this
The fight of her life
Had been much short of bliss.

How scary and awful
The path she’d been on
Had seemed at the start
But now that it’s most done

Had been a long road
Of learning to trust
A God who is faithful
To every one of us.

He never did leave her
He never did go
He stayed right there through it
And wouldn’t you know

She knew He was there
From the bittermost part
To the triumphant ending
That was due to start

In less than 12 hours
She’d enter the room
Where others had traveled
The same path of doom

And exited victorious
As winners as champs
Her last day of poison
She’d have the last laugh.

So on to recovery
Twas happy to know
That the rocky next week
Would most certainly go

The way of all memories
Fading with time
The scars being reminders
About a worse time.

How lessons were learned
And how miracles lived
How God answered prayers
And how families gave

OF MEALS!

OF CAR RIDES!

OF GIFTS OF THE HEART!

OF PRAYERS!

OF WELL WISHES!

OF PURSES AND ART!

OF LABORS OF LOVE!

AND OF MONEY GIFTS TOO!

The list that she had,
Well it just grew and grew.

So much to be thankful
So many who cared.
Sometimes she just wondered
Why her life was spared.

She knew she had purpose
And purposed inside
To always remember
And never to hide

Her light in a corner
But let it so shine
That others would wonder
How could she be fine

Having been through this journey
Not totally done
But feeling triumphant
Like she’d already won.

The dishwasher’s going
The kids tucked in tight
It’s time for this mama
To just say good night.