Ruth's musings

I have been dealing with breast cancer for a while, and have been sharing my journey with friends, family, and prayer partners. This blog brings all my updates together in one place, and leaves me free to muse on other parts of my life. Thanks for visiting!

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Ruth Update #17

July 15, 2006

Dear Friends, Relatives, and prayer partners,

Sorry I haven't written in a while. I actually tried to send out a message just before we left for the Virgin Islands, but my ISP was not cooperating.

Anyway, we had a wonderful time in the VI. Due to the lack of privacy in the cottages, and the need for "two deep" adult leadership at the Scout campsite, there was no cottage swapping, though Paul and I did get an evening in town to ourselves. We did have to buy some fish to bring back for the party. We got some fresh Mahi, and the next day, one of the Scouts seasoned it and fried it. I think it was the best fish I had ever had!. Our cottages had small refrigerators to hold the fish. Most of our meals were simple, prepared by the Scouts. Peter Pan and Mrs. Smucker are our heroes! We had a lot of PBJ sandwiches for lunch, and I missed a few meals, too. There was also a lot of fruit available for the picking. Matt's tree-climbing skills came in handy when a mango tree was found. We also became acquainted with soursop, also known as guyabana. There were small green fruits, too, that were mostly seed, but had a bit of tasty flesh. They were also handy for Scouts to throw at each other. Combine the missed meals with all the physical activity, and we all lost weight. Well, I don't know about Matt and Timmy, but Paul and I did.

Snorkeling was great. We got to see coral reefs and beautiful fish. I could have done some more, but, though I am a strong swimmer, I am not in good shape, and I was afraid to over do it, and, since Timmy is not a strong swimmer, I was assigned to be his swimming buddy, and I had to come back when he did. Also, there is the possibility of sunburn. Though we used sunscreen, it does have its limits. I got a little pink, but nothing bad. My bald head got pink, except for where my snorkel strap was. I am told it was quite a sight! It has faded by now. Also, since I had two weeks off of the regular chemo regimen, my hair started to grow back! I had some "peach fuzz" even before that, but now I have actual hair. Of course, I have resumed my treatment, so I would not be surprised to lose that hair in a few days. No worries, though. I have one treatment left now, on July 27th, and I expect to have an actual head of hair by Christmas. Maybe by Thanksgiving!

Thank you all for your continued prayers. If you would say a special prayer for my friend Belinda, I would appreciate it. She is scheduled for a mastectomy on Monday, July 17th. She found her lump by self-exam. I am not sure what her follow-up treatment will be, as they are still exploring options.

In conversations with people, when they have been telling me their troubles, they often say something like ". . .but it is nothing compared with what you are going through." I appreciate the sentiment, but when I hear other's troubles, I am often reminded about how blessed I am. I have a strong marriage and a loving family and circle of friends. I am, again, doing well in my treatment. Please don't think that I feel that I am somehow suffering more than anybody else. I care about you, too.

Get your mammograms. Do your self exams.

Love,

Ruth

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