Tuesday, August 4, 2015


I realize I haven't updated here but all is well.  I will be sure to write more later, for now her scans look magnificent and we can proceed with treatment. She is on day 4 of 5 days of chemotherapy.  So far, so good!  Thanks everyone!!!!

Next Stop....

As I was talking with a friend the words, "except for this Fucking cancer thing always hanging over us, life is really really good." came out of my mouth.  I need to think on that for awhile.  #celebrateeverything

So another summer day is upon us. I spent this hot August day playing Mom Uber Driver and carting kids around the county. I'm not complaining. I even got to catch the fantastic Pixar movie, Inside Out as a perk! We have enjoyed pretending we have conquered this third incident of cancer. It is easy to make believe all is well while we swim, play, attend concerts and movies, have small excursions about town and generally live like normal people. Then, like a criminal hiding behind a tree with a sledgehammer, reality hits us as we walk the pathway of our days. Day to day "life is really really good" but tomorrow we face reality. Julia has an appointment with her oncologist and we shall discuss the next steps of her treatment. It is hard to ignore the reasons we are there. I don't expect any big news and hope for no surprises but if you care to wish us well it would be appreciated.  So much for pretence.  Back to the morning haul in with the traffic that every city suffers at that hour. Maybe we can find a great breakfast or lunch place. I will enjoy the one on one time without the "cool teen" in the room. When it's just us it is so much nicer. So there it is! Something to enjoy. #celebrateeverything


Monday, August 3, 2015

And She is Outta Here!

After thirty three treatments over 6 1/2 weeks, suffering the fatigue, tender skin, nausea and most of all social isolation that goes with it, my Badass Kid completed this part of the journey!!!!
She isn't out of the woods by a long shot and even this victory will take weeks to rebound from but she did it and did it well. 
I am sorry we are five days out and I'm just updating now but we also picked her oldest brother up from Governor's School that afternoon and to be perfectly honest, as I always am, ,we have been celebrating ever since. 
I am full of thoughts and emotions but have been too exhausted to share. Stay tuned though. If you know me you know I don't keep quiet for long. Until then, we steel up for her oncologist visit this week and head into the next part of treatment. Buckle up friends and family,.With chemo, college visits, online school for J and regular school for the Boyz and Mom's business and work responsibilities all scheduled around a few fun trips, whew, it is going to be a crazy month or so ahead. We are busy but not complaining. Why?  Say it with me, We Celebrate Everything! Corny, I know but we are so grateful.
#sotired #celebrateeverything #juliasarmy #teamjulia #gratitude

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

One Day. One.

When life is in the rearview mirror there are days, times, even small moments that are looked at with a clear memory of never wanting them to end. Friendships or other relationships that are passed have that bittersweet taste of remembrance that somehow only hold onto the good. So many times while experiencing something, even as a child or young adult, there is that thought, "Please let this last forever". We all have those thoughts. Summertime is full of them.
I say this to explain clearly and frankly, this is not one of  those times.
Julia is down to ONE radiation treatment. ONE more day of rising her two hours before we leave so she can take her chemotherapy that accentuates the efficacy of the radiation. ONE more day of driving into the hospital and not entering the Emergency entrance like everyone else, rather heading to the door next to it labeled clearly and tauntingly, "Cancer Treatment Center". ONE more day of watching my 13 year old daughter sit in a waiting room of adults, most old enough to be her grandparent and thinking, "How the hell is this right or fair?!". ONE more day of watching other patients come and go as their treatment schedule is much less and lighter than what she needs to endure. ONE more day of watching my incredibly brave yet incredibly moody teenage girl gather the strength to walk into that room. One more day of watching that same young girl who carries my heart with her get clamped to a table.
This is not a summer of happy memories but because I know this kid and what a child she is at heart, I know she will take happy memories from this experience. I will try to follow her lead because after all, we #celebrateeverything.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Flashback to why Strawberry Seeds

Originally I started this blog as a way to deal with our struggle as a family moving on from Julia's Leukemia treatment (twice) and other "stuff" that was thrown on our plates. It was therapeutic for me and I thoroughly enjoyed sharing with a very small audience (probably just myself) what was happening in our life at the time. I reached a point where we were "good". I had worked out a lot of issues, I thought, pertaining to having some kids with special issues and being a mom who loved them. On I moved to taking care of myself and I started Juicy Bitts. It involved my love for Juicing and a healthy lifestyle. I started posting here to save my friends from hearing about it adnauseum via Facebook. Once again time moved on and life happened. I left the blogosphere and didn't think much of it. Then came March 3rd, 2015 and I received a call from my daughter's school that she had what they thought was a seizure during class. That changed everything. To make a long story short, she was diagnosed with a brain tumor on April 30th. April 30th happened to be the 24th anniversary of my dad's passing from, yes, a brain tumor. The shit storm was stirred up again and we were placed back in battle mode after her being off treatment for six years. Our friends, family neighbors, complete strangers came together to form #JuliasArmy and we shared our progress on Facebook. Many people have contacted us and said they didn't have access to those posts. At first my response was (and I won't lie, still is) Oh well, that is where we chose to share so figure it out. It was not a problem I could handle at the time. perspective is everything and it can change the battle. I stumbled across this old post from 2009, however, and remembered how a positive outlook can make even the dreaded and hated a bit more bearable. So here I am once again and will celebrate everything and be frank and honest about where I am with my family, especially my daughter, and hopefully those who couldn't follow before, will now. Peace, K
Friday, April 24, 2009 Goat Crud or Strawberry Seeds I was having a bad day yesterday and was working a usual 12 hour shift ... one thing was not related to the other ~ I love my friends at work and know that miracles are around me all the time when I am there! Regardless, I was just plain nasty! Anyway, Greg called to let me know about his field trip to the farm. I have to start with telling you that he was in no way excited about this excursion. Each time it would come up and I would ask him, "Are you getting excited?" "What do you think you will see?" "I wonder what you will do..." his answer was always the same. "I do not wanna smell goat crud!" "I am NOT excited about seeing goat crud!" Do you know how disgusting goat crud is?" Ummmm ... no I don't and I'm not really sure how he would either. Of all farm animals to mention, goats wouldn't be on the forefront of my brain and Crud is not a word we really use around here. He did tell me he used that instead of the really bad "C" word though.... that would be Crap for those of you with minds in the gutter! Welcome to life with Gregory. So he gets on the phone and I hold my breath after asking him how his day was ... Greg: Great!!! Me: Really? What did you do at the farm? Greg: It was great! Do you know that Strawberries whiten your teeth?! Me: No, I never heard that. Greg: Yup, so I will eat strawberries and never go to the dentist again. Me: Yea, no. It doesn't work that way honey. Still gotta go to the dentist. Sorry. Greg: oh. Well we saw some tomato plants that were nicer than yours. Me: Great. Okay, I gotta get back to work Greg... Greg: Wait ... One more fact: Did you know there are over 200 seeds in a strawberry? Me: Wow! Cool! Greg: Yup! And I saw a cow, a mouse and a chinchilla too ... (I have NO idea what the heck kind of farm this is!) Me: (with great relief) So no goats, huh? Greg: Oh there were goats alright. Me: Oh. Greg: And their crud stunk! Told ya so! Thanks Greg! But I'm glad he had a great time and was able to look past The Goat Crud. I am heading out now to work and then go out in the North Carolina weather of blue skies and 85 non-humid degrees. I am still in a not-so-great mood, but I will look past the Goat Crud and count the strawberry seeds. How corny is that?!