Tuesday, March 09, 2010

He's in the Army now!

Dear friends,

Well, my boy is now officially in the army now. He left us at 6:00 a.m. when he when into the courthouse downtown to start his enlistment. They gave him another physical, interviewed him to get information regarding his government security clearance, & planned his transportation to boot camp at Ft. Jackson, etc. Tuesday they flew him to Ft. Jackson, SC.

He called Greg for 3 minutes on Friday and told us that on Tues. he arrived at midnight. They processed them until 4:00 a.m. and sent them to bed- UNTIL 4:15! Then they got up and stood on lines until 10:00 that night! He sent me a postcard that said,"Hello! I'm good. Got my hair cut and didn't sleep. Gotta go! Jesse." His hair was very short when he left, so he must not have any now! Greg told him to remember the big picture and Jesse agreed that is what he is trying to do. He is also trying to stay unnoticed. Where he is, getting noticed means teasing and extra push-ups or some other "bad" thing. His birthday was yesterday and since we don't have his address yet, couldn't send him any greetings. He actually begged us not to. But we did think of him and thanked God for him. Adjua's 19th birthday is on Thursday this week.

We currently are enjoying a visit from Helen, one of our partners from The Gambia. As we met last evening and were getting to know each other, we realized that she had met Jesse when he was there last year. She remembered him. I get to have the fun of introducing her to America some before she heads to a big womens' event in FL next week. She has just begun telling me about her ministry. So far I know that she and her husband head up Inter-Varsity in their country and she is doing many facets of education and ministry related to HIV with women in the Gambia. What a privilege!

Friends are asking me to share about my health, so I will give an update. My right wrist has been hurting quite a bit lately. It is the one I had carpal tunnel fixed in last fall. I saw the hand doctor after I got home from Denver and learned that it is very unusual to be experiencing any pain this many months out. The carpal tunnel symptoms are gone, but I have some swelling and other tenderness in my palm and wrist. Sometimes it hurts a lot. He had me go for an MRI last week and I see him Thursday to go over the results. The nurse said that the report showed a bunch of things, so it isn't a simple PT solution.

My knee is hurting again. The shot has worn off. My knee doctor talked about trying that new kind of shot in my knee that isn't steroids. My friend Deb said it worked for her knee for several years. I will be going to see him sometime in the near future.

I have a sore place in my abdomen. I am fairly certain that it is a result of scar tissue from my TRAM flap surgery 10 years ago. I will talk to my oncologist about it when I see her next month. I see my gyno-urologist next week. I tried taking a very difficult medication to help grow a lining in my bladder. It was hard on my body and had to be taken on a completely empty stomach, which meant 3 hours between eating 3 times a day. After 2 months I decided that it was taking over my life, and giving me extra headaches. My doctor has another treatment she wants to talk to me about. I will let you know more after I find out about it.

One conclusion I have come to lately is that all these little things that are going goofy in my body are mostly (if not entirely) due to the side effects of having chemo twice and radiation once (like the scar tissue from my TRAM flap surgery). One of my doctors told me that not that many women have lived for 11 years after cancer, so even the medical community is learning what the side effects are long-term from these treatments. So the bad news is that there are lots of medical issues to deal with now, but the good news is that I am alive to experience them! I am approaching my 11th anniversary of discovering my cancer the first time, and almost 4 years since the 2nd time. That is pretty cool! And I am pretty grateful!

Thanks for hanging in there and reading all this. I know that there are at least some of you who read this and let me know when it has been a while.

Helen just got home, so I need to sign off and learn more about the Gambia. Blessings- Nancy

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