Sunday, November 1, 2009

My Mom

The majority of you probably all know this because you're friends with me or my sister on Facebook, but I'll update those that don't. My mom was first diagnosed with breast cancer in August of 2001. She underwent a mastectomy and went through chemo and radiation. She went into remission in April of that year. In May of 2008, she was diagnosed again with stage 4 breast cancer. The next January we found out it had spread to her lungs. That is when she again began chemo. As with most chemo, it knocks out your immune system and causes you to be very weak. At the very beginning of the month she had to be taken to the hospital by ambulance because she passed out and started throwing up and was too weak to even get up. She went home the same day and the doctors just said it was a little spell from dehydration, etc. About two weeks later, she had a small stroke while my sister, Chiara was home. She spent about 2 1/2 days in the hospital. They felt it was a side effect of the clinical trial drug, Avastin, she was taking with chemo, so they took her off that. Then last Wednesday night, her friend Barbara took her to the after-hours clinic because she was running a 102.9 fever. That's a high fever for anyone, but especially someone on chemo. They told her to go to the ER because she was extrememly dehydrated. On the way to take an x-ray at the ER, she passed out because she was so weak. They admitted her to the hospital and found out it was some kind of infection and told her she may be able to go home Saturday. Friday they found that she had blood clots in her lungs. Friday night they gave her two pints of blood because her red cells are so bad and yesterday put her on oxygen. I talked to her today and she is feeling a lot better. Hopefully she'll get to go home tomorrow. Please continue to keep my mom in your prayers. We hope this will fix the problems she's been having and won't have to be in the hospital anymore!!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Prayers Please

The former General Mangager at TFC (where I work) lost her two year old son today. He fell into the family pool late afternoon yesterday. We don't know a lot of details, but even though he was still alive (or they were able to revive him with CPR - I'm not sure), apparently too much damage was already done and he was pronounced brain-dead today. This is so devestating for the family. Michelle, the mom, lost her first husband six years ago (they started the gym years ago when it was Adams Course) and now she and her older children are having to deal with losing another family member. They are so young to go through this and I can't even begin to imagine how they feel and how Michelle and her husband feel right now losing a child. I can't think of anything worse than that. Please keep them in your prayers as they go through this trying time.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

My Amazing Sister!!

My sister, Chiara, has always wanted to be a photographer. We've talked for years about opening a business, her doing the photography and me doing the business side. After much talk, we finally moved forward and have spent the last few months working on it (she did most of the work). It truly is a family affair, our oldest sister, Tiffany did most of the website setup and work. I am so proud of Chiara...she is really talented!! Check out her website: and her blog: Love you Chi-Chi!!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Elliptical Therapy

Yesterday I didn't have time to work out in the morning so I fit it in right before work. Yes, I was gross, but luckily when you work at a gym, it's a lot more acceptable. Anyway, since I had already done an hour before work, I rationalized I had too much stuff to do so I wouldn't work out after work too, like I do most days. I was pretty much in a bad mood the whole afternoon at work worrying about all the stuff I have going on: last week of classes this week, finals next week (and one tomorrow), moving out of my apartment by next Thursday, finding a job for the summer (either in Texas or Oklahoma), and Whitney's bachelorette weekend/lingerie shower next weekend. There's a couple other things, but I can't really get into them here.

I left work and was driving home, really frustrated and stressed and wanting to hit something (yes, I have anger issues). I stopped at Subway and was going through the line thinking I really should go back and work out and get some stress out. So I dropped off the sandwich at home and drove back to the gym. I plugged in my ipod, got on the elliptical and was way ahead of the pace I usually keep, which was proof I had a lot of agression I needed to get out. Usually when I work out, I just put my ipod on shuffle and it randomly goes through the 2000 or so songs I have on there (no, I don't actually like all of them and probably close to half need to be deleted). Anyway, I was going hard and my mind was racing with everything I needed to do when Jesus Take the Wheel came on. It made me stop (not literally because I was in a zone and couldn't stop to ponder) and think that I am so bad about trying to take on everything in my life without ever asking God for help. I know I wouldn't be nearly as angry and stressed if I would just give everything over to him and let him have control over my life. So I said a little prayer that he would guide me through all the chaos and help me realize that I need to turn to him a lot more than I do. When I got done with my workout I was so refreshed and felt like a huge weight had been lifted off my shoulders. I also realized that my workout time is a great opportunity to spend some time with God in prayer. Moral of the story: turn to God when things get tough and let him have control - I guarantee it will turn out a lot better than if you try to handle it yourself. Also. working out is a great stress reliever and I highly recommend it.

Oh and the song that came on after my epiphany was Jessica Simpson's "I Think I'm in Love with You", which is a whole other story that I can't talk about on a public blog...

Friday, April 10, 2009

Family Friday

So I was ridiculously busy and stressed this week and I didn't blog at all, let alone do my Tribute Tuesday. I'm making up for it with this post about all my siblings. As most (if not all of you know) my family has been through a lot. In the past eight years we have seen our parents separate for three years and get back together, lost our grandfather to lung cancer, seen my mom battle breast cancer, lost our uncle suddenly, lost our grandmother, and lost our dad to cancer. Now we are again facing the cancer battle with our mom. Going through all of these struggles has only made me love my brother and sisters more. I honestly do not know how I would get through everything with out them. I thank God daily for my amazing family. I'll go through each one and share why they mean so much to me.

Cary: I love to tell this story and remind my brother about it: When I was born, my brother was almost 8 and after having two sisters, he obviously wanted a brother. My dad came home where they were all waiting to hear about my arrival and when my dad told them they had another sister, Cary was very upset and ran back inside the house crying. Luckily, our relationship has not followed that beginning. I have always looked up to my big brother and wanted to do everything he did. Thanks to him, I have a fondness for Corvettes, old and new, and a love affair with Mike Piazza (which has tapered off since he retired), just to name a couple. From the time I was in third or fourth grade to some time in middle school, each summer he would take me to a movie and maybe dinner. I can still remember all the movies we watched: Sidekick, Little Big League, Indian in the Cupboard and Matilda - these are some of my favorite memories. As we've gotten older our relationship has changed, especially since my dad passed away. Cary has really stepped up to make sure that I stay on the path to my degree and don't get discouraged on the long road. He is always there when I need someone to talk to and gives me sound advice. I admire him so much for the man he is. He works so hard (especially hard this time of year) for his wife and two precious girls and he still makes time to take on the "responsible" role for my mom, me and my sisters. I really just can't say enough about my brother. He is my hero and I love him very, very much. Thanks Cary, for being the best brother I could ask for!

Tiffany: My oldest sister and I are probably the most alike, at least as far as our personality. We are both independent, sarcastic, hard-headed and opinionated. I'm sure our family can add some other things too. We also look and sound the most alike. I can't tell you how many times I've fooled one of her boyfriends on the phone. For the most part, we have always been pretty close since there's a pretty big age difference (6 yrs). When we really got close was the summer before she left for college. I remember doing things with her that summer more than any time before. Even though we have always been far apart in distance and maybe don't talk but once a week, if we're able to do that, we are still able to pick up right where we left off (it helps that neither one of us likes to talk on the phone much). When I was in Texas, she would come through and pick me up on the way to Oklahoma for one of the kid's birthday parties. Those are definitely some of my best memories with Tiff. I miss being able to do that since I'm in Oklahoma now, and now she has Matt to ride with her. I love that she has found such a great guy that treats her so well. I am also so excited about her new baby boy, Devon. I know she's going to be an amazing mom; she's already so in love with him. Tiffany always listens to me vent and can relate probably better than most to me because we're so much alike. It means a lot to have a sister that is so open and honest with me and lets me be myself. I love you so much, Tiff!!

Chiara: Unlike Cary and Tiffany, Chi and I have not always been close. We fought all the time growing up (I even have some scars on my arms from her nails). We started getting closer when it was just the two of us at home and especially when I started high school. She was a senior when I was a freshman and was never too cool to talk to me or let me be around her friends. She even let me go out with her and her boyfriend when they would go to dinner after church - I'm not sure many sisters would do that at that age! There are a lot of things that I admire about Chi. In high school she was by far the best player on the softball team and was the reason they did as well as they did, but she would never tell you that. She had three or four different articles written about her in the Fort Worth and Dallas papers, but she'd never tell you that either. She downplays her accomplishments and doesn't like for people to talk about her like that. When I decided to go to college at OC, the main reason was so I could be around Chi and her new baby, Catch. Rather than go out and do the "college thing" I hung out with my sister and I'm glad I did. We are VERY different (she loves shopping, I hate it; she's quiet and reserved, I'm loud and crazy; she's laid back and doesn't get mad, I'm high-strung and get angry easily) but very much the same. People always say they can tell we're sisters and we don't know how since we don't look alike, then we'll be standing in line and notice we are standing the exact same way, we say the same things at the same times and we view 99% of things the same way. I would be lost without Chi, she is always there for me and is willing to go out of her way to help me when I need it. Chi, I will never be able to repay you for everything you've done for me. I love you!

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Tribute Tuesday Kick-off

Since I’m trying to be better about keeping up the blog, I am attempting to come up with some catchy topics for certain days…so stay tuned for more. I decided Tuesday will be Tribute Tuesday – I’ll pick someone (friend or family) who means a lot to me and tell a little about why they are an important part of my life. The first honoree is…wait for it…my best friend, Whitney.

I chose her because it’s been a long time since we’ve seen each other and I miss her tons! I first met Whitney the summer before sixth grade. Whitney was going to start going to FWC the next year and Kelle Samsill, one of the first grade teachers, went to church with her family. Kelle thought it would be a good idea to introduce Whitney to a couple people so she would know someone when she started. So Kelle took Whitney, Lauren Felps and me to Bailey’s for brunch one day. I don’t remember much about that day, just that I thought the food was good! Whitney and I were ok friends in middle school but that really close or anything. We have talked about it and neither of us really remember what brought us closer together – I think the starting off point may have been our friend Kristen’s birthday party August before our Freshman year, regardless of how it happened, by Freshman year she was my best friend and it has been that way ever since.
Even though we went to colleges far away from each other, we stayed close. She has been there for me through all the crazy drama in my life and there’s been a lot of drama. But she’s put up everything and always lets me vent! Whitney was there the night my dad died, has seen me cry my eyes out and not thought anything about it. She is absolutely the best friend I could ask for. I look up to her for the kind of person she is and the way she lives her life. I have learned a lot from being her friend. She is one of the few people I can actually talk to on the phone for a long time. Usually when we’re together, it’s just hanging out and talking. We don’t have to go out and do something to have a good time.
In November Whitney got engaged to a great guy, Drew and they will be getting married June 27th. I am beyond excited that she has found such a good Christian guy that absolutely adores her. I can’t wait to stand up with her and share in her special day! Whitney: Thanks for being my best friend for over 10 years (wow!) and putting up with me – I love you!!