Puppy Power

Lets get a puppy, it will be fun! A cute cuddly little puppy. Who doesn’t love a puppy? Ah the joys of puppyhood. I do absolutely love my puppy! We have been going to beginner obedience class, she is so good. We are graduating next week! She is seven months old and she is a ball of fire! She has so much energy! She is either full speed ahead or fast asleep! I am so happy she is in my life. But she is a mess! She loves to play outside, she brings the outside in! Her wet muddy paws all over my floors. Stickers, leaves, and sand in my bed. Water, omg the water, she sticks her whole face in the bowl to drink! Then she shakes her wet mop face all over the place. Every water bowl in the house is full of sand. She is making so much extra work for me. She has just recently found the joys of digging so now I am raking and cleaning, and washing constantly! She loves toys and is an expert at tearing them apart all over my carpet! I must be crazy!

She has finally stopped getting car sick so now I can take her places without the fear of having to clean up my car when we get home! She chases my chickens and plays with sticks. She loves to play frisbee and swim in her pool. She loves tackling and wrestling with McKenzie, my poor older dog (she loves her too, most of the time)!  Who’s idea was this?!

She is getting so big. I bet she weighs 40 pounds by now. I know that because she likes to jump up on the bed in the morning and lay on my chest to wake me up! She eats socks and drinks out of the toilet. She chews up shoes, flip flops are her favorites! Her personality is huge, she is outgoing and gregarious. Tallulah Bleu, she is a handful! What was I thinking?! I love her and I can’t imagine life without her.

First Adventure

IMG_2422So…last Wednesday I set off on my first adventure in quite awhile and the first adventure since my diagnosis and all that. I wasn’t even sure it was going to happen. There was so much preparation to do at the farm. I knew that I traveled often, when I got my puppy, Tallulah, I just figured that I would “man up” and board her at a local kennel while I was away. Well at least until she became a little more manageable! Right now she is still kind of a maniac and can’t be left unsupervised. And precisely two weeks after I brought her home I hear about all this terrible dog flu thing spreading across the nation. What? I never heard of such a thing?! Dogs are dying. Keep your dogs at home. Dog parks are closing. Dog shows are on hold. You’ve got to be kidding me? I had planned all these great socializing doggie outings for her. I was going to take my dogs everywhere with me. What about puppy kindergarten? Showing her off at PetSmart. Hiking in the forest. Great!

So…there is no way I want to expose her or any of my other dogs to that, so I try to find a baby sitter, or someone to stay at my house while I’m away. Not much luck. Maybe I will just have to stay home until she has some manners. Dang it! I have the opportunity to go to Puerto Rico. I don’t know if I will ever have this opportunity again. Right now my life is all about living life to the fullest, taking risks, and not passing up opportunities. But my critters are my family and they come first. I don’t want to endanger them in any way.

So…about 10 days before I would be trying to leave for Puerto Rico we come up with this great idea. How about we build an outdoor kennel for the dogs? Make it comfortable for them to stay in while we are out of town. Like a little doggie playhouse. Wow what a great idea. It will pay for itself, boarding is very costly, and our dogs will be safe, and close to home!

So…I get right to work designing this doggie playhouse! And off to gather supplies we go! So now we add dog house shopping and building to the already crazy task of getting ready to go away. Line up the pet sitter, get all the horse feed and dog food, and small animal supplies. Line up back up help just in case. Organizing and cleaning bowls and cages and coops and the barn. Make sure the grass is mowed and the place is at least halfway in order so it looks like someone actually lives here! This is way more than I feel like I can handle…maybe I should just stay home?

Relax

Today is a good day. I am happy to say I am feeling really good in a kinda relaxed familiar way. I have been very busy to say the least. I think I may have been over compensating for what I perceived as lost time during the active phase of my illness. I felt kind of “out of control” wanting to get back to “normal” and do all the things I hadn’t been doing for the last 8 months. I have a bad habit of forcing things, making stuff happen! But sometimes, as I am learning, you just have to let things run their course. So in the last few weeks I have been going like crazy, doing this and that. Go, go, go! The puppy keeps me busy, in, out, in, out, play, play, play!  Jerry left for Puerto Rico, so everything is my responsibility, yikes! I have started painting again, with many more cool projects piling up. I have been yard saleing. I have been playing my cello, even jammed with some friends! I have been cleaning and organizing my house and getting back into doing some much needed yard work. It has been crazy steamy hot here, of course it is summertime in Florida! I have been walking and doing Tai Chi. Promoting my artwork again. I have been eating healthy and taking care of myself. Researching all kinds of stuff. Back to doing farm chores and horses. Wow!

Don’t get me wrong I am thoroughly enjoying myself! I oftentimes look back and think I couldn’t have done this six months ago. Just walking to the barn was all I could muster! I am beginning to recognize myself again. I feel more like the old familiar me! My strength is coming back, my hair is coming back, I think it’s actually thicker than it was before! I now have eyebrows and lashes! I have researched, got approval from my doctor, and have started taking a supplement called Turkey Tail Mushroom. It has had some very promising results in supporting the immune system in post chemo patients. I am still dealing with some side effects like this crazy burning in my thighs if I stand up for too long and hot flashes and night sweats from the hormone therapy. Bone and muscle aches and pains, some mornings I’m not sure if I can get out of bed! But these things are getting better and I can live with them.  And I am finding that the better I take care of myself, eating clean and gentle exercise, the better I feel, mentally and physically, surprise!

So now I am beginning to feel like I can calm down, rope myself in a little bit and find some balance. Work, play, RELAX, repeat!

 

Ok?

Tomorrow I get the results of my latest PET Scan. I wonder if there will always be this worry? I don’t like worry. But sometimes its hard not to worry. I know it doesn’t do any good and I know I shouldn’t do it, but there it is, staring me in the face. Just going for the PET Scan reminds me that I have cancer, oh crap I forgot! Then the radiology guy innocently asks, “Are you anemic? You bled a little more then usual.” Oh no! Thats where this all started, dread! So then everything starts to ache more. I am feeling a bit more tired this week. I had a hangnail that bled a little too much, oh no! Am I going backwards? Is everything ok? This sucks!

Now I know this is irrational thinking. I know you need to be positive.  I know the medication I’m on can cause muscle aches and bone pain. I know that it also gives me hot flashes and night sweats, so I have not been sleeping well. And the hangnail well…it is what it is! I hope that as time passes I will be less anxious about all this. It’s hard to trust your own body when you feel like it has let you down in the past. But I know I am getting better, and stronger every day. My blood work results have been improving each time. So I am just gonna look forward to better and better results. Maybe one day I will be normal…not a chance! Lol

Its crazy what the human mind can do. Sometimes its hard to control, like this silly puppy sitting at my feet chewing on my shoe. But with time and patience it will come around. Sometimes a nice long walk helps too!

 

You Are Here

You are here. Here I am. Some days I am still puzzled, how did I get here? Where am I headed? How did this happen? Still learning to take things day by day. I know, I know you’re thinking, just get over it and move on already! Believe me I am trying! I always seem to get ahead of myself. So I make all these plans and appointments and then I wonder why? What were you thinking? Oh thats right, you think you can do everything. Think again! Ha! I have been crazy busy the last few weeks. Just this week alone I drove to Georgia to pick up my new pup, which is upending the whole routine around here! I did the Mothers day things for friends and family, took the puppy to the vets, my own doctors appointment for blood work and XGeeva shot, had my cello lesson, took my big dog to the vets for some minor surgery, and had a root canal! I honestly hope the root canal was the last horrible thing that I have to put my body and mind through for awhile. Enough is enough! It actually wasn’t that bad and I am happy to get it over with. This tooth has been bothering me for awhile. When I was getting my chemo treatments and my platelets were so low my oncologist said a dentist wouldn’t touch me. So I guess, in some weird way, I am happy to be able to get it taken care of. In fact this little old tooth could have been making me feel not so super good.

Some days I just feel overwhelmed and worn out. But when I think back to what I have been through I am so excited at all I am able to do now. So I just have to slow down a little and let my body catch up to my mind. I know I am not as physically fit as I once was. It is coming back slowly but I find if I push myself too much I am not a happy camper! I was thinking about a personal trainer to whip my butt into shape? Hmm, no way! I’m not ready yet. Right now this new puppy is wearing my a** out! So I will just have to take it slow. Slower than I want? Yes. But as long as I’m moving forward I can’t complain. So I guess I will just have to make the best of my situation. You know, bloom where you’re planted! Maybe I will write more.

 

Some Days

Some days I just don’t have a clue about what I am doing. Today is one of those days. I am just fumbling around, trying to get things done, which I am, but I feel so unorganized with no definite direction. As far back as I can remember, I have been a goal oriented person, always moving in the direction of my goals. Lately, I have been reevaluating my life and trying to figure out what is important to me. Right now I don’t feel the same as I did pre cancer. I don’t know which way to go.  I still don’t have the strength or energy to do everything I would like to do.  I used to work with my horses almost every day. I used to paint all the time.  Now it seems like I just don’t have the gumption or patience to do any of it. I wonder if it is the medication I am on, is it making me crazy? Am I still just getting over the effects of the cancer treatments? Or are my priorities just changing? I’m not sure.

It is scary! Part of me would love a change, a new beginning. To leave the country and change my identity! Part of me wants to get back to familiar business, to a life I enjoyed. Will it ever be the same? My illness has given me a new, heightened respect for time, which I don’t want to waste. But I don’t know which way to go? Too many choices. Not to mention the ever expanding debt that a life threatening illness can bring. Pressure to get back to making money. Under Pressure! Right now it seems to be all I can do to get the farm back in order, spring is always a busy time of year, weeding, watering, cleaning. Things are really going along just fine and I am getting stronger everyday. I just feel like a wanderer with no real direction. This really annoys me! Is that bad? Fear of the unknown? No way! I am beating this cancer thing, I am not afraid! Does anyone really know what they are doing anyway? Is this a pep talk to myself? Maybe. Some days you just need a pep talk.