Thursday, June 09, 2005

Wedding Bells...

Wow in two days one of my best friends is getting married! I don't feel old enough for stuff like this to be happening. It's going to be a great weekend though. I'll have pictures of everything next week. Congratulations Anna and Alan!!

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

I'm Back...in more ways than one!

O my goodness, I'm dissapointed in myself for not keeping up with my blog. My goal was to use it as a journal for my battle with Hodgkin's Disease. I do have an excuse though. My computer has been sick, like me for a while! It's finally back and running. I have so much to say since I last wrote. January was my last post, its now June and I can happily say I'm cancer free!!! I finished chemo in April, which put me through six months of ABVD treatments. In March before I finished I had CT and PET scans done to determine the extent of the disease left, if any. By the grace of God all signs of the disease were diminished and I was declared in remission. I started radiation two weeks ago, and I will do that for eight weeks Monday through Friday. Even though I'm in remission radiation treatment is recommended. It has been noted to increase the cure rate after chemo by up to 10%. I did lose most of my hair while doing chemo, but it is coming back, and looks good. I still wear scarves, but most people would say I don't really need to. I think another inch and I'll feel comfortable without one. Chemo was not easy, but I came through very strong and did not really experience any terrible side effects. Radiation so far has been a breeze, however it does make me a little tired. I met a wonderful friend through this whole experience who, like me battled Hodgkin's. Her battle was probably more difficult than mine, but we both can relate to each other very well. We have only been able to talk on the phone for several months, but in September she will be flying in to see me. I attended Relay for Life in my home town last Friday night. I was able to walk with the survivors to kick off the event. I can't describe how good the feeling was, even more indescribable than when I found out I had cancer. My life is slowly, but surely finding its way back to normal. But an experience like this one changes you forever. I just accepted my first teaching job a few weeks ago, and will be starting in August- sixth grade science! I can't wait. To those of you interested in Hodgkin's check out this website, this girl is amazing. www.alesecoco.org Until next time...

Monday, January 31, 2005

this is an audio post - click to play

Saturday, January 29, 2005

Burrrrrr!!!!!!!!

Yay! South Carolina's first snow of the year! You have to admit even though its not much, if you live in the south, when it snows-you get excited. It's mostly just ice and sleet, but there is a thin blanket of snow, always nice to look at. I'm feeling alright today, a little headache like always after chemo, but hey lets face it-it could be way worse. I have been surfing the web for Hodgkin's Disease websites and stuff. Even got on a mailing list, where patients ask questions and have discussions about treatment. I think I feel a nap coming on. Until next time...

this is an audio post - click to play

Thursday, January 27, 2005

Half-way there!

Wow! 6 chemo treatments down, 6 to go! I never thought I would be writing about my chemo treatments at 22. Its great for me to be able to write about it though. Its much easier and more fun to type this stuff down, instead of write it in a journal. Yesterday I felt terrible, I made the mistake of driving myself, I was trying to be tough, but the drive home was more tough. I feel much better this morning. I have to go get one of those great shots today that keep my blood counts up. There seems to be only one nurse there that can give me that shot without it burning!

Sunday, January 23, 2005


Taken at Tiger in Leeds, England Summer 04 Posted by Hello
Visiting my friend Kimberly who studied at Leeds University for one semester from South Carolina.

Cancer at 22


Imagine being happy, healthy, good looking, twenty-one, about to be twenty-two, just about to finish your college career. One day you wake up feeling great on your way to school, you notice a lump on the side of your neck. Within two weeks you are diagnosed with Hodgkin's Disease Lymphoma. CANCER. That's me. Cancer doesn't happen to people like me, and certainly not someone who is 22 years old. That was my old way of thinking. Now I know cancer doesn't discriminate against race, age, ethnicity, or religon. Today, it has been almost three months since my diagnosis. I endure chemotherapy over a 24 hour period every other week. A girl who used to be consumed with the way she looked, now sees there are far more important things in life. Those long, dark, curly locks that I used to get complimented on every day are gone. Sometimes I still get discouraged. But mostly I feel like this happened to me for a reason. Maybe to change my outlook on life, or to teach me some sort of lesson. I may never know. What I do know is how I want my experience to teach others and support others dealing with cancer. I hope to raise cancer awareness. If only one person goes for a routine checkup and discovers cancer, early, able to treat it and live a longer life because of me, I will feel complete.