The Anchor 💗⚓️💗 – Edition 35

 

 

me

4/6/18

Dear Friends and Family,

My New Year’s Resolution for 2018 is to exercise.  I have been busy exercising through the LIVESTRONG program at the YMCA.  The program lasted 12 weeks and classes were held twice a week.  The program introduced me to TRX and water aerobics where we learned proper weightlifting and stretching techniques.  Also, we focused on cardio.  The LIVESTRONG coaches were amazing and very encouraging.  It was also nice to be with a group of women that had walked a similar path as me and were wanting to have a more healthy lifestyle.  We were the 13th graduating class and received a certificate and  yellow rubber ducky with a graduation cap on it.  I definitely will miss my workout friends and the coaches.  The program held me to be accountable and committed to my fitness.  We were assessed in the beginning of the program and at the end of the program and I made progress in all areas. 

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The Anchor 💗⚓️💗 – Edition 34

 

 

3/18/19

Dear Friends and Family,

I had a check-up on Friday, March 16th.  My oncologist said that everything is looking good, which is great news!  She said that my radiated skin is healing nicely too and it is the best that she has ever seen.

I also participated in a lymphedema assessment to make sure that I am not developing signs of lymphedema since I had lymph nodes removed when I had surgery.  The assessment went well.

It is crazy how much has changed since this time last year.  This time last year, I was preparing for my surgery.  I feel that I have come such a long way. 

The literature does not prepare you for life AFTER cancer.  It takes some time adjusting to life and things are not the same way they were before.  I have found a positive outlet for myself by exercising.  

I take things day by day.  Some days are easier than others, but overall, I feel that things are going well.  I also never thought I would dye my hair red, I figured, why not…

Anchored in HOPE,

JW

The Anchor 💗⚓️💗 – Edition 33

2/21/18

 

Dear Friends and Family,

Just wanted to check in and let everyone know that things are going well.  I attended my first meeting for the Distinguished Women of CanCare.  I met many wonderful ladies that are cancer survivors.  The group is facilitated by the director of program services at CareCare.  The group will meet once a month.  I also have been attending the LIVESTRONG Program at the YMCA twice a week.  The program is for cancer survivors and helps us regain strength through exercise. 

The Komen Race For A Cure was held on Saturday, January 27th.   About 5,000 people attended the event, despite the weather.  It rained before and after the race.  The team War on our Rack consisted of about 25 of us.  I had a great time and I was very thankful that my family and friends participated.  My two friends that are survivors were on the team as well.  My survivor friend and I finished the race by walking the “Survivor Path” together.

My Cancerversary was on February 2nd (Ground Hog Day).  It is hard to believe how much my life has changed from a year ago and all that I have been through.  Looking back, I realize how lucky I am to have such an amazing support system!

Anchored in HOPE,

JW 

The Anchor 💗⚓️💗 – Edition 32

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1/16/18

Dear Friends and Family,

I thought that I would check in with everyone since I had not written an edition for The Anchor in awhile.  Things are going well and I am glad that it is a new year.

I applied for the Texas Counseling Association Educational Endowment Fund which provides professional development grants to association members whose schools were affected by Hurricane Harvey.  I was one of ten recipients chosen to receive funds to rebuild my office.   It was a great blessing that I received the funds considering that my professional resources were destroyed!

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I also applied to be a Distinguished Women of CanCare (DWOC) and was chosen to become a member!  The program offers support to women that have overcome cancer.  I am looking forward to the benefits of the program and meeting other thrivers.

Texas weather can be crazy!  It has been snowing and has resulted in ice around the city.  The city has basically shut down.  My dogs and I went outside for a quick picture.  I am wearing pajamas provided by Pink it Forward.  Pink it Forward puts together care packages for women battling breast cancer.  The packages can remain anonymous and can be sent to that someone special that needs support.  I received my pajamas a little while ago, but today was the perfect day to wear them.  

Also, yesterday was a personal milestone for me, I went to work without wearing my “garment” or hat.  The students were not on campus, so I thought, “why not?”.  It actually felt very liberating and I received a lot of comments.  I also had to present to small groups, but my lack of hair didn’t interfere with my presentations.  🙂  My hair is growing in slowly, but I am glad that it is growing back.  It will take a little while, my hair has never grown fast…

Anchored in HOPE,

JW

 

The Anchor 💗⚓️💗 – Edition 31

12/21/17

Dear Friends and Family,

I hope that everyone is doing well and having a nice holiday season.  I have not written in awhile and feel out of practice.  I have two weeks off of work which is great.  Last week, we held a Holiday Pop-Up Shop at my campus for our students since they lost many of their toys due to Hurricane Harvey.  The Holiday Pop-Up Shop was a success and will bring smiles to many students’ faces.  

As for me, I have had a lot more “free” time and I am not going to MD Anderson as frequently as before.  I met with my oncologist a few weeks ago and she said that I am doing well.  She also prescribed Tamoxifen for me to take every day for the next 10 years.  The drug is an estrogen blocker.  I was estrogen positive, which means that excess estrogen played a factor in my breast cancer diagnosis.  The medication will block estrogen that I produce.  Just like any medication, it comes with a list of side-effects.  To be honest, the side-effects haven’t been bad or I guess I haven’t really noticed them.  I did have a dull headache the first few weeks, but I don’t seem to have one anymore.  

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The Anchor 💗⚓️💗 – Edition 30

11/20/17

Dear Friends and Family,

I received my 20th radiation treatment today. I invited friends and family to MD Anderson to celebrate the end of my treatments.  I was so nice to see my support system together in one room.  I rang the bell three times like you are supposed to and continued to ring it some more!  We drank sparkling grape juice and ate doughnuts and kolaches.  Today is National Beautiful Day and it certainly was a Beautiful Day with so much to be grateful for!

Continue reading “The Anchor 💗⚓️💗 – Edition 30”

The Anchor 💗⚓️💗 – Edition 29

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11/18/17

Dear Friends and Family,

I have completed 19 rounds of radiation and have one more treatment to go!  I am so excited that my treatment will soon be ending!  In my opinion, radiation feels like the forgotten part of treatment since you usually hear so much more about the side effects from chemo.  Do not get me wrong, chemo was difficult, but radiation is difficult also.  It is a big commitment going to treatments everyday.  I am fortunate that I get my treatments out of the way and complete them first thing in the morning.  My skin in the radiated area is red and sore.  I also have itchy red bumps on my chest.  I moisturize with Aquaphor after treatment and when I go to bed. 

Continue reading “The Anchor 💗⚓️💗 – Edition 29”