Helene the Fighting Machine!!!

Hope 4 Helene

But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.

Isaiah 40:31

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Sunday 6:15 am

Oh yes, Golly Miss Molly! Up today at 5:30 am......The boys had to get up to be out of here before 6 for a bb game in Lynwood. I actually felt semi normal for the first time in a while (since FL). I went to Tyler's game yesterday for this tournament. They won 16-0, but what was so great was just forgetting about the cancer thing, seeing him play and catching up with all the families on his team. If they make it into the championships later today, I am hoping I feel well enough to go. Thankfully Courtney and Holly came and let Molly out yesterday and gave her some company as I was gone for 5 hours.
Well, someone is chewing on my toes and wants to's not Rob! GTG!!

Friday, June 25, 2010


I's a no chemo Friday. YEAH!!!!!! I forget how wonderful it feels to not have to go get the poison dripped in to my body. I just want to feel normal again.

I had trouble blogging and honestly didn't feel much like typing this week. Thankfully Kim figured out how to get me back on. I finished radiation on Monday and with the chemo combo I really felt like sh_ _. I missed a dinner out with friends from work and struggled through work on Wed. It does not seem like the radiation worked as well as I was hoping. The pain near my upper spine is still there.... I have a CAT scan scheduled for Monday (so shake those rosary beads) and will get the results on Fri. July 2 when I see Dr. Kash.

PUPPY!!! Her official name is Mollie Jo. I really liked Lexie (Courtney Schmidt came up with that) but the boys liked Mollie Jo or MoJo. Teri G. got me started on MoJo which then became Mohamed Josephine.....but she is a Mollie. At 6 am I call her "Double D" for Devil Dog or as Denise said "Sybil Jo." However, no one sees her at 6 am but me. Oh no...when people see her she is the sweetest, cutest little puppy there is. She is usually very sweet. I got Tyler up this am to babysit her so I could sleep in. When I came down stairs he was wrapped in my pink and white polka dot blankie that Shea made for me and he was sound asleep. Mollie on the other hand was chewing on the blanket......those 14 year olds- they are all talk.

I am hoping to see Tyler play bb this weekend. I have missed so many games and that really pisses me off with this whole cancer thing. I like going to his games. He seems to understand, but I know it bothers him a little that I can't be there. When it is so bloody hot out- I can't be outside. Not too much shade at bb tournaments.

Keep those positive thoughts and prayers coming. Hopefully the CAT scan will show more shrinkage of tumors.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Where's Helene???

Hi everyone!!! This is Helene's friend Kim!!! She is having trouble getting on the blog to be patient, I am trying to figure it all out! Hopefully she can post soon!!!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

So happy to hear that you got that new puppy!! She sounds like just what you need with the boys being off at BB so much. Now if I could just figure out how to find the picture of her that you posted!!

Somebody just sent me a short 12 minute film of Tom Petty making is latest CD titled Mojo! I vote for that name! Here is what I found as one of the definitions on the web: A magic charm or spell; Supernatural power or luck; Personal magnetism; charm; Sex appeal; sex drive; Illegal drugs. Which one works for you??

I hope you are doing well enough for Becky and me to come visit next week!

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Way too Cute!!

This puppy is an absolute doll!!!!! Haven't firmed up a name, the boys have been gonesince 5:45 am for a bb tournament and should be home soon as it is 6 pm.
Thye may want to have a say so in the name category. I need to figure out how to post a picture of her on this blog thingy. We are 6-6 in pottying outside :) She loves t5o snuggle, play. sleep, snuggle. Her temperment is so easy going!!! She likes my sandals a little too much..gonna have to watch that stuff.

Feeling a little better today compared to yesterday. Glad I have someone to snuggle with on the couch with. The soreness is still in my esphogus and kinda in my throat. Free week from chemo coming up!!! Then next week after-cat scan then results July 2. Please keep those positive thoughts and prayers coming!

Yeah...puppy day!!!!

I think I am as excited as you about your new baby!!! Can't wait to see pix and hear about her!!! And...still waiting for the name!!!

pos from earlier post...

PLEASE do not think that I am asking for more gifts when I tell you about things that people have sent me. I am just letting people know how much I apprecdiate things and thier thoughtfullness. Many of you are still sending cards and making dinners for Monday nights (my worst day). HOWEVER- the most important things to me are the prayers and positve thoughts you are sending. Remember- it takes a mess of girlfriends and family members to kick this cancer in the ass- once and for all.

How much is that Doggy in the Window???

Today is the day!!! Holly will be picking me up in 2 hours to go get the new puppy. I am so excited that I couldn't go back to bed when the boys left at 6:45 am for a tournament game in Evanston. They drove all the way there yesterday in rush hour traffic and 10 minutes later they had to turn around and come home in rush hour traffic due to the game being cancelled due to the weather. SWo. far I have cought up on email, done 3 loads of laundry, cleaned the kitchen and still have dusting to do. I need to pace myself as I am sure this new puppy will require a ton of energy.

Teri G got me started on a name for this little girl. I had some really girlie names picked out with the help of friends and Courtney. Teri said MoJo, which became Mollie Jo. I need some MoJo to get through this cancer thing.....Lexie Jo is still in the running along with Tessie Jo (Julie's fav). The boys couldn't come up with something sporty so they'll have to live with whatever I come up with. Tyler still wants to call her Boss.....BoJo just doesn't cut it for me.

Rob took me chemo yesterday. I ended up getting extra fluid as I was starting to dehydrate because swallowing hurts so bad due to the effects of the radiation. We got home -which I don't even remember- and then I slept for 4 hours after having slept an hour or 2 at the cancer center. My stomach is really giving me problems and I know I sound like a whiner.....sorry. No pity parties today!
Take care,xoxox
Ps. Julie sent me the cutest had in the mail- light pink with the workds believe across with the l being the cancer logo. Then she had HTFM embroidered on it. When does she have time to do this while working, taking her daughters to and from dance is beyond me! Too cute. My wardrobe is getting more and more pink things and I am loving it! Linda Sue gave me the sweetest shirt- light pink with hot oink letters I Fight with the i's dotted as b/c ribbons. How fun. Next time or so will tell you about the interesting Robin shirt she found for me.....But that is another story

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Still takin' naps...

Just like the life of a baby...I need to take a nap to make it through the day. Today I slept 2 hours before I went in to work at 2. Still weak in the knees and refluxish- but a little better today.

Found out I can bring my new puppy home on Sat.!!!!! Linda has a crate, a cute little dish and a small collar left over from Maggie. Can hardly wait until sat.

Work is going well- my students are great. One student who has spina bifida was back in the hospital and hasn't been able to come to class. It is exciting to see them make progress-even when they are 40 or 50 or 60 years old. These are the students who really appreciate all that I do with them.

time for ice cream...(I hear it is good for reflux..)

Monday, June 14, 2010

muy crappola

This seems to be my worst day so far.....last day of radiation and hopefully those side effects will ease up soon. It could be a couple of weeks before the radiation starts working. I am just not feeling well and am having a pity party. I am looking forward to that puppy to take my mind off of my troubles. 6 more days!!! Katie- Rob's cousin from Iowa- sent us a hot pink Susan G Koman leash- way cute. can't wait until she is walkable and I can walk again. I really miss my walks with Payton Jo.

I was so fortunate today with getting food! I am not real hungry (sweet tooth still reigns) but the 2 boys are hungry and I have no energy to cook. Linda Sue brought over this really refreshing frozen lemonade from Panera with soup and bread. I can always eat fresh bread. For dinner, Terese made moscacholli (sp?) casserole, g-bread and wonderful brownies with choc. frosting. How she had time to pull this off with a toddler and a newborn is beyond me. Don't know if I mentioned it, but Lynn brought over her famous rollie pollies and ham sandwiches after chemo on Friday. It only took us 2 hours to figure out how to post pictures to people of the new puppy. I am such a loser with technology.

I was so fortunate to have Karen M. take me to chemo last Friday. She has been through this herself and understands how much support it takes to kick this disease in the ass. I may have mentioned this earlier- but I do have chemo brain and am very forgetful.Gotta go- I need to lay down.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Puppy Pix!!!

That is the sweetest face!!! What a cute baby!!! I think you should go with Saddie Jo, Bella Jo, Daisy Jo, Emma Jo, Foxy Jo, Gabby Jo, Gracie Jo, Hailey Jo, Hannah Jo, Lacie Jo, Lexie Jo, Lilly Jo, Molly Jo, Roxie Jo, Sassy Jo, Tootsy Jo or Zoe Jo!!! If you do not like any of those...can not help you out!!!

My fav...Lilly Jo!!!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

A Puppy in 10 days!!!!!

Today Denise and I drove out to Peru, IL to visit some cockapoo puppies. In 10 days I am bringing a little girl puppy home!!!! I just can't wait, but they have to be 8 weeks old before they are separated from their mom. Soooo...I need a name and Tatiana won't cut it! Suggestions are welcome- but her middle name will be Jo after Rookie Jo and Payton Jo. Full grown she should be 15-20 lbs, and is darkish apricot in color- medium curly hair, with a white spot below her mouth- or as Denise calls it- "a soul patch." It was so difficult picking just one puppy out. The mom and dad dogs were on site- as they are family pets and are very well behaved, not yippy and are very social. Since Payton has been gone, this house is just too quiet- esp. with Rob and Tyler in MI for a bb tournament. I will sleep with a bb bat next to the bed. I did think about having a knife near me the last weekend when they went to IN, but I would probably cut myself.....

On the negative side, I am having some bad reactions to the radiation on my back. I had that severe back pain that I still am on meds for, but I also started getting nauseous, the chills, then the sweaty feeling, acid reflux and icky feelings in my throat and esphogus. The radiologist said it should eventually go away once I finish the radiation, and my last radiation appt. is next Mon.

Tomorrow is Round 4 treatment 2. Mi amiga Karen Morrison is going to be "Driving Miss Daisy" and staying with me during treatment as Linda Sue is in MI already. Linda needs a break from me and the whole chemo thing. I used to work with Karen at COD and we continue to keep in touch. I am so grateful for all the support I have had through this ordeal. Tia cooked homemade chicken and dumplings for us on Monday. Talk about home cookin'!! She also made cornbread, southern green beans and ginormous chocolate chip cookies! Yum!!!! It reminded me of my Grandma Brade's cooking as she used to make the same meal- but without the cc cookies!

Keep shaking those rosary beads and keep me in your thoughts!

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Back pain from HELL

I am soooo drugged up right now- but at least the back pain has abated somewhat. I was ready for Rob to take me to the hospital on Th- even the vicodin wasn't working. The pain coincided with the start of radiation. The radiologist thinks that the back pain in not related to the radiation- I disagree. His thought was that lying on the hard surface for 1/2 hour put my back in distress. The oncologist does not think that the severe back pain is related to a new tumor- who knows? I haven't lifted anything- my peeps covered me in FL and Tyler went to the grocery store with me to carry stuff.

Linda, Rob and I saw the oncologist on Fr- he wants to do another round of chemo(3 weeks on Fridays), then have another CAT scan to determine the treatment plan. There really is not a set program for this type off all depends on the results of the scan and how well I tolerate the chemo. They worry about non reversible neuropathy.

The boys are in Indiana for a bb tournament. It was weird being home by myself- no snoring husband or dog needing to go out.....I watched TV until 2:30 am- Mash, Friends, Criminal Minds.....

OK- so back to FL- Karen- the Queen of fluff and creativity came up with a rap that the group did- wearing hot pink swimming caps and our TEAM HTFM t-shirts with the sort of crooked lettering....What a HOOT! Each had their own verse- too long for me to write out- but the gist of it was being the fighting machine kicking cancer in the ass. Karen being the my old bf next door, Liz the southern bell, Holly and our kids being family and a mention of Thom and his short shorts, and then Denise and I as past teachers and fighting the fight with me. Too bad we didn't record it for You Tube.....what a fun memory.

Thursday, June 3, 2010


I started radiation on Tuesday for a tumor on my spine that is causing me some pain. The actual radiation lasts 45 seconds, the set up takes a while. I now have different back pain that is pretty severe. I am icing and taking 2 vicodin at a time. I see the radiologist and the oncologist Friday. I am so hoping that they won't want to do another MRI or CAT scan- as the costs add up.

I am so missing my long walks on the beach......there were so many beautiful shells. I found a 5-6 inch conch shell that had someone living in it. I debated keeping the shell- but ended up throwing the shell and it's owner back in the ocean. I couldn't have that on my mind- the slimy creature had a right to live, too.

Karen decided to make us all TEAM HTFM hot pink t-shirts- what a hoot!!!! She ironed on the white letters and she has all the "fluff" going, but making t-shirts is not quite her cup o' tea. My t-shirt turned out fine- the letters were not all attached all of the way, Denise's t-shirt was pretty much straight, however Karen ran out of M's and Denise had an upside down W instead. Then it got interesting..... Karen must have been having a little splishy splash as the iron on letters became more and more crooked and off center. Those t-shirts gave us such a laugh. I am hoping we all save them for next time!

Next blog....."THE RAP!"

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

I am jealous!! But I am SO SO glad that you had such a wonderful time! How could you not?

Back to Reality..

Words can not describe how beautiful Sanibel is!!! The house Karen was able to get for us- I walked out 20 feet from the patio and there was the ocean! The house had 4bedrooms, 3 baths, living room, family room, huge kitchen with a table that could seat at least 10! (not that we cooked!) The weather was gorgeous- hot, but usually there was a breeze and who cares about heat when one is walking along the shoreline, seeing dolphins, shells, sting rays, boats... The island was really not very crowded until we went to Captiva and then it was just because there is one basic road.

No needles, dr. appts- just forgot my cares, and was spoiled by Karen, Holly, Denise, and Liz. I slept late- and was able to take 2 long walks along the beach each day. We ate at great restaurants- I was in shrimp and crab heaven. One night I overdid the adult beverages and had taken vicodin and scared the crap out of Denise with my nightmares.

More later as I am in the midst of laundry, putting my stuff away and catching up. I am so grateful that I was able to go and really enjoy myself. I did miss Tyler's tournament, but he and r Rob managed to survive without me. Tyler pitched in the championship game and they won their tournament in DeKalb.
Life is Good!
xoxo, HTFM