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Karen's Cancer Blog

Here's to Health

One of my main goals currently is to get healthier as I mentioned in my previous blog. Now coming off of chemotherapy, radiation and all things cancer, this is not a fast track to health... by any means, but since I haven't been working yet, I work out at the gym twice a day 4 to 5 times a week. I do a cardio workout early in the day and then Ron and I meet at the gym after he is off for more cardio and weights. I am slowly rebuilding those muscles back. It is difficult, because I am not very patient with these kind of things... well myself. I want great health now! lol.

Luckily Ron is always encouraging me to listen to my body and not over do it, he also tells me how proud he is of me, this makes all the difference. We are also eating healthy together. Wow does that help! So we are a team doing this together, just like we beat cancer together. Really I have a whole team of people that played a role in me beating cancer! It's pretty amazing. 

Funny story, I hurried to the gym yesterday and was on the phone as a rushed out, I didn't realize I had my boots on and not my workout shoes. I worked out anyways! HAHA! 

Some people ask what I am eating to get healthier... well I eat a lot of vegetables... salad, cucumbers, tomatoes, zucchini, carrots, sweet potatoes, cauliflower, and broccoli. Also a alot of fruits, apples, bananas, oranges, pineapple, and peaches. Nuts, proteins. Anything that will help my body and mind heal. 

So I also mentioned yesterday how chemotherapy affects the brain, they call it "brain fog" . For me it has been much more than brain fog, I lost a lot of the ability to problem solve or the cognitive functions of my brain... it was frustrating to say the least, so for my brain health I eat healthy along with play different games to stimulate my brain to make those connections again... it's working pretty good and I do pretty good. Now I only notice "brain fog" when I have been busier than normal. 

Thanks for all the positive and uplifting thoughts... you are all very appreciated!

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That's good. I exercise half hour every day for over 35 years, nothing fancy just on my living room floor. I feel so good afterwards, loosened up, lol. I did incorporate 3 lb barbells about 4 years ago to strengthen my left arm. My neck dissection for left tonsil ca required my surgeon to sacrifice some neck muscle in order to preserve nerves. When I get tired, my head leans, lol.
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after surviving

I have been thinking about blogging about my cancer journey for awhile...I was diagnosed in April of 2016 with breast cancer... stage III initially then stage II after all testing was said and done. I underwent a lumpectomy in April of 2016 and a mastectomy in May of 2016. I will undergo reconstruction late in 2017 as I have to wait one year after radiation treatment to undergo reconstruction. At the time of reconstruction I have decided to have my right breast removed also. 

I may ramble on as this is my first blog ever and I have a lot on my

I am now on "the other side" of it... I survived! yahoo! It feels so great to have survived the diagnosis and treatments although, of course, I am still being treated from the threat of a return with hormone blockers. 

What is interesting to me is once you have been diagnosed with cancer and even survive it like many people do, it never leaves you. Cancer is now a huge part of my life in many ways... my body has been left depleated of everything... mostly because of the treatments, but they worked so it's all good, but I do have to deal with it.

Healthy has a whole new meaning. I now am so gravely aware of the implications of what unhealthy leads to or in the least aids in when you have an illness. I began working out a couple weeks ago, slowly, as my muscles and bones are weak and also depleated. After a mastectomy things like the "ab machine" at the gym are interesting since I am not even... yup I still did it. Also my strength and ability with the left side is much different than I have ever known so I am learning to "slow down" and slowly work that side. 

So after cancer, everything normal  before is now different. For instance my skin... who's skin is this? Not mine! But it is, so I am getting to try new things to see what works with this new skin. Thank you Birchbox! 

My hair is ever so slowly growing back, of which I am so excited for! One of my worries was it wouldn't. I sure get looks with this super short hair, I even second look myself. I wear a hat most of the time because my head gets cold very easily. I have had people say "don't be ashamed and take your hat off," well thank you, but my head is cold! You see not only am I limited in the hair department but the chemo damaged my nerves up there and it's not healed yet...

Chemotherapy affects every part of a persons body... everything in everyway.... here are a few and some have lingering affects. Hair to begin with, I lost every hair on my body except for 2 eylashes and a few eyebrow hairs... (I did learn how to draw eyebrowns in!) the good part I did not have to shave my legs and they were smooth! Every bone in my body ached like never before for 3 to 6 days after my nuelesta shot. I could not even focus on a movie. My mind, it took my memory, and that made it hard to have a full conversation without sounding like an idiot. This is getting better, but my memory is still affected 4 months after completing chemo. Although I had and have a great excuse for forgetting... heehee. I gained 20 pounds form the steroids and just not being active at all... I am now down 10 pounds though! The second week after chemo my mouth dried out, and I mean dry! food tasted bad and feels even worse. I took Biotene and this helped some, but if I didn't constantly take it, my mouth was DRY! Also the second week after chemo, my digestive system would hit fast forward so I spent it close to the bathroom... I took Immodium and this helped, again as long as a constantly took it....

So this is me sharing my cancer journey and I think many others have a similiar journey....Not everyone understands, that's ok, I just know for me, it's nice to talk to others that do and hear thier similiar stories... and we kicked cancers butt!


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Marcia sent you a hug.
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You are a Warrior, whom I still pray for often! So glad you are working through this journey, :) (Hugs)
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Thank you!
Everything normal before is now different......I love that you wrote that. Many others wouldn't understand this statement but I get it! I am now 6 months in remission, but don't have the best survival stats, so I view life very differently now. My body still feels like it is at war, but mostly my mind is tired. Learning to live life while worrying about cancer coming back is my biggest challenge. Muscles aches and fatigue still lingering. Hair is growing, too slowly for me, lol.
I'm glad you are blogging, it's very helpful and this site has been a huge support system for me. Keep pushing forward!
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Vital Info


July 16, 2016

Kellogg, Idaho 83837

February 7, 1975

Cancer Fighter

Cancer Info

Breast Cancer

Stage 2

5.1 - 6.0 cm

Grade 2






Avastin (Bevacizumab)


It takes your life away

I am stronger

Listen, be understanding

Kootenai Cancer Center

Listen to your body, get out when you feel good

Stay positive, there is always something to be thankful for!

May 12th mastectomy and some lymph nodes removed



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