Thursday, March 25, 2010

Since Arizona

Sorry It's been so long since I've blogged. Life has been a little hectic since Arizona.

Here is my grandma Arlen and I on the golf course. We just followed as Uncle David, Melissa and my grandma's friend, Frank, played.
This is a group of us out to eat.
Even my cousin Luc was able to make it down from school to hang out at my grandma's
I thought this cactus was so funny. Woodpeckers make these holes and people filled the holes made with golf balls.
Some of the girls hanging out at dinner.

All the ladies from my grandma's tap class got up and did a dance routine they knew at the resturant we were at.
There is a park close by that is absolutely beautiful. I sat by that waterfall and didn't want to move. The smell of the water and all the greenery was incredible and refreshing.
We hung out at the park for a while.
I wish this was in my backyard.
Arizona was a fun time. It was really cool that My Uncle David, Melissa and my cousin Luc also were able to make it out there while I was there. I spent a lot of time laying in the sun. I had some fevers and some really bad abdomen pain, so I really couldn't walk around much and do many things. My grandma and I went to a beautiful park nearby. We went golfing (well, we watched everyone golf and we cruised around in the cart which was good enough for me). We went to watch my cousin Luc and my Uncle David play hockey up at Luc's college. It was pretty low key, but the trip was just what I needed. The good thing about having all this time off is that I am really able to spend a lot of quality time with my family and friends, getting to develop much better relationships with everyone. All and all I love Arizona and it was a fun time.

What has happened health wise since my trip:
When I got back from Arizona I was so incredibly weak. I literally could not walk on my own. I got my bloodwork and my hemoglobin was 7.5 (which is the lowest mine has ever been). Normal is 12 or higher (I forget how high it goes). So I got another blood transfusion the day after I got back from Arizona.

I went to the Pain Clinic the next day because I was having the awful pain in my abdomen and nothing was working to get rid of it. Their recommendation was to take more pain medicine. I got a PET scan done the following day to see how things were going inside my body. So, I was in the hospital 3 days in a row after my Arizona trip. Fun! At least I got a weekend off before I started my new chemo, Ixempra, on Monday.

I had to take the Neulasta shot the day after chemo, which is for having low white blood cells. The terrible thing about this shot is that it causes the worst bone pain in the world. One week later I was getting my blood counts checked and at the same time I had the worst bone pain that I literally could have cut off parts of my body it hurt so bad. My red blood count was down to 6.3 (lowest ever yet and of course I couldn't walk on my own) and my platelets were super low at 11 (150-300 is normal). So, of course I needed to go to the hospital to get a hemoglobin and platelet transfusion. I actually wasn't that upset to go, because I knew I could get IV Dilaudid all day and night which is about the only thing that will completely take away my bone pain. I even decided to stay the night when the transfusion was done, so I could just get IV Dilaudid all night long. Now that's when you know I am in bad pain.

So now, the pain has started to fade. No more abdomen pain. I think I have enough blood cells now. I think they might give me a lighter dose of chemo next time... I hope. Why???????? Because Kevin and I have booked a vacation to Puerto Rico mid April. I am so excited to be able to go on a vacation WITH KEVIN. We're staying at a really nice hotel that has it's own private island that has the whitest sand and the crystal clear bluest water. I cannot wait to go.

I also booked a shorter trip with my mom and sister, Stacie, to go to Marco Island, FL in early May (right after my 30th birthday). That place looks equally unbelievable. I cannot wait to spend some quality time with them just hanging out on the beach. It's not like I'm all better or anything. I might be sick or in pain while I am on vacation. I understand there are people who think I am crazy, but I am not going to stop living. I might not do much there at all, but all I am really interested in is the weather and the beach. I think I will have a great time and I'll make sure to bring lots of medicine.

Well, that's about all for now. I'll blog sooner next time. Life has just been really crazy and when I am not doing all this stuff I am sleeping because my new anti-nausea medicine makes me sleepy all the time.

Thanks everyone for your support.
Lots of love


  1. AZ was so much fun .... And guess what I found the other day? Puffs plus with vicks!!! :) so happy to hear that you and Kevin have a vacay planned together!!!! Love you. Melissa

  2. I hope you have a wonderful time on your vacation. We will got to Miami and relax at the beach next week!! So looking forward to that. I am sick of thinking that there are things that I want to do and just can't. Thanks to you I will just go and try to do everything I was too afraid of before.

  3. You are such an inspiration! You inspire me to be the best I can be everyday! Thank you. I am so glad our paths have crossed and look forward to our continued friendship!! Your AMAZING Shannon!! Enjoy your vacation with Kevin!

    Teresa Stankoff

  4. Seems like you've been having a rough time. I'm so bummed to hear. However, your always optimistic attitude seems to be pulling you through yet again. It's wonderful to hear you have some warm weather trips planned. Hopefully by the time your done with those MI weather will have something great in store for you too! I'll continue to pray for you! Hugs, Carina

  5. Hi Shannon:

    Thanks for the update and I'm sorry that we weren't able to connect while we were in Michigan. I hope that you have a great time in PR and let me know if you need any tips on how to behave in the 30+ club. Hope to see you soon.

    David Ward


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