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There's no place like home !!!

"What I've learned..... Cancer teaches us that living is a verb.  It s an action word.  Living is seeing, doing, feeling, saying , touching, smelling , tasting.... It is climbing and it is occasionally falling.  It is not a waiting word.  Don't wait to live until you have accomplished a desired outcome - start right now !  Grab every minute of living out of each day.  If you do , you will realize that every day well-lived is like a miniature lifetime..."
     I have been home from Mayo Clinic for alittle over a month now !!!  It's amazing how quickly time flies... I am feeling stronger each week - I am so eager and anxious to feel " normal" again.... it's crazy how MUCH you miss " normal" when it's taken away from you.... Don't ever take your day to day routine for granted - embrace NORMAL ❤️
     As I am feeling better - I have been "tipping my toes in the water" at the salon and going in a few hours a few days a week... Mornings are good for me - by afternoon I'm am alittle fatigued, so I usually rest. I'm learning to follow my body's lead. 
     I will be returning to Mayo on Oct 2nd for another bone marrow biopsy ( 100 days from the Transplant) -that will determine if I am in remission or if the cancer is still hanging out.... I feel strong and confident- I truly feel the cancer is gone.... really the only two reminders I have of the multiple myeloma is the aches and pains in my back (the broken vertebrae are healing, but it's a long process) and when I look at myself in the mirror in the morning and I see my shiny bald head...the wigs are fine - but they are hot and heavy - but this too shall pass !!! 
     I want to thank all my family, friends and clients who continue to support Marty and I.  This past 10 months of our lives has been an up and down rollercoaster, but the constant support and prayers from so many people has helped us get through this journey... I'm looking forward to getting back into my " normal" life... it might be " a new normal" but that is OK - bring it on !!!  God Bless ❤️

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Heading home 🏡

We are packing up the car and getting ready to head home !!!!  I get my port taken out at 11:00 and then we are on the road !!!!  I wish I was Dorthy from the wizard of oz and could just tap my heels and be home 🏡.... This has been a long journey but I know I have had so many family and friends prayers and support-  I am truly blessed - looking forward to sleeping in my own bed tonight!!!!❤️❤️❤️


Day 18 + from transplant -- Day 32 since we arrived ....

" Who helps me in a hardship truly is my friend " -Swahili proverb

         Here we are Day 18 after transplant - but I've been away from home for over a month now ..... I'm so ready to be back to Watertown.... my numbers keep doubling so I will be able to check out on Monday ( if they can get all the exit appt in ) otherwise I will be done on Tuesday morning.... Kathy left yesterday- it was wonderful to have her around - Marty is back with me now !!! Thank you for your support and your many prayers 🙏❤️I'm feeling stronger every day !


Day 16+

"Be still and know that I am with you."

This is Kathy reporting in. Carol is doing well today but is just really tired. It might be because her body is focusing on healing and doing a great job! This morning the Doctor reported that all of her blood counts are looking good. Most have doubled since yesterday which is just what they are supposed to be doing! So it was a great morning! We then enjoyed Carols favorite meal- fried chicken, baked beans and potato salad (from the local Hyvee). Now... as fireworks blast around us we are calling it a night. Happy 4th to all! 


Day 15 +

Quote of day "the goal is to live a full,productive life even with all the ambiguity.  No matter what happens, whether the cancer never flares up again or whether you die, the important thing is that the days that you have had you will have lived." -Gilda Radner -

     Toni had been with me for several days Caring for me ( thank you T) she headed home yesterday and my sister Kathy is with me now - it's been great being surrounded by so many amazing women (and of course my Superman Marty ) marty will be back on Friday !!! 
Dr Morie Gertz stopped in today to visit - after he left we were told he is the " Multiple Myeloma Guru " at Mayo .... he said he would stop in again tomorrow so I'm excited because I do have some questions for him 👍❤️ He had said everything is going very well - numbers are rising and he thinks I will be out of here by early next week 😁👍 Praise the lord 🙏 I will be ready to have Rochester in my rear view mirror 😊😁


Day 14 - wigs/hats/ or scarves- oh my 😊

Quote of the day: " One day I will look back and see all along - I was blooming "

      Here we are 14 days after transplant (YaHoo)  My numbers are starting to come together and I am starting to feel more last myself ❤️ Still waiting for the white blood count and several other important numbers to start their climb 🙏 But I can see the light brightly at the end of this tunnel !!!! Today was my first day to sport one of my many wigs - it was fun to see the response of some of the nurses !!! Tonight we will have a longer session at the Station because I am low on potassium plus I will stil need my antibiotics drip.... All is good through - we are on the stretch with the Finnish line coming in sight 👍❤️👍🙏 As always your prayers and support are so appreciated- thank you for the bottom of my heart ❤️


Day 11 - also known as " shave the head today"

My quote of the day " When I look in the mirror bald, I can be overwhelmed by my strength or disarmed by my vulnerability. There are moments when I see a warrior, a fighter, a badass. Then there are moments when I see a cancer patient, a victim, or a shadow of my former self. I am learning to accept, embrace, and love my many selves." - Jenna Benn

The past 24 hours have been full as you might imagine. Last night (Friday) Carol had a temp that triggered the 'fever protocol'. That included blood work ups, chest X-ray and two antibiotic drips along with more fluids. No wonder she was so zapped yesterday afternoon. 

This morning she felt so much better and started her day looking in the cupboard for hot tea and food!!! Wow, music to my ears! After our morning Station 94 visit, more IVs, she directed me to the neighborhood grocery store and we poked our noses in the freezer section and found TV dinners for lunch. 😊

As as you can tell by today's quote Carol is sporting a new look. Post shower she walked out of the bathroom holding a hank of her hair. 😳 Clearly 'that' day had arrived. She took a long nap and was well rested before the clippers came out. In no time she looked like Demi Moore in GI Jane! Yep, she rocks that too! We had a bit of a photo session so she could let her kids and Brooklyn see the transformation. What a super hero!

We look forward to hearing the numbers jump to confirm grafting but from our 
vantage point we are having steady improvements.

Blessings to all, have a restful night. 


June 29 Day 10+

Quote of the day. "I am learning to trust the journey even when I don't understand it." 

Toni here, today we had a success! 😊 Carol drank a small chocolate McDonald's shake when we got home from Station 94! 

Both yesterday and today Carol had an IV of fluid. Today it was followed up with a bag of platelets as her blood count has taken a drop. The nurse assured us it is very normal for that to happen. We are glad to be 'normal'! 

The immediate goals are rest, hydrate and get the proteins in. Two of the three are more of a challenge then you might imagine. We are looking for tiny steps that assure us that things are getting better. Maybe tomorrow the blood count will assure us we are in the upward swing. 😉