Karen's Page

Welcome to Karen's Page, a web page intended to keep Karen's family and friends informed about her cancer. Karen, age 40, has a rare form of cancer called Pseudomyxoma Peritonei. She and her husband Tom have 2 children ages 4 and 7.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

My First Follow Up Appointment

Good News Everyone!

I saw Dr. Dreisbach today for my first post-chemo visit. I've been done with chemo for a month now. In the mean time, I've had my blood work done (CEA and liver tests) and my first CT scan since "the surgery". My CEA (a cancer antigen) was normal and so was my CT scan (other than my missing parts)!!! This is such great news, I can't even tell you. Tom and I expected to hear this news, because we know we've done everything possible to beat this cancer. But STILL, it was good to hear. My liver tests showed some inflammation, but that is a pretty typical finding, after chemotherapy. We will follow up every 3 months for blood work and every 6 months for CT scan.

How am I feeling, do you ask? Better and better. It's been a slower process than I thought (of course - I want everything NOW), but my energy is coming back. I'm starting to teach some routines in my Jazzercise class, and it feels so GREAT to be back on stage again. I can't do a whole class yet, but am working hard on it!!

I had my hair colored (for the first time since Oct. 2005) and cut today. I feel great about it. It's like I'm getting back to normal. I love the way it looks. Soooooo, things are going great at the Pendleton house. Ain't it great to say that? It's about time - after 8 months of big change.

Anyway, thanks to you all - AGAIN! Your prayers have helped me mend and heal. Only God know what's in the future, so I can't worry too much about it. I only hope that I can keep the lessons I've learned in the forefront of my mind and heart. For example.......1. God loves us and wants us to serve 2. Don't waste any moments in your life on trivial things 3. Prayer works 4. Ask for help when you need it - there are so many loving people who really love to help others 5. Persevere. There are so many others.

Peace be with you all.


Thursday, July 06, 2006

Let me tell you.....

Hello Friends,
I'm doing pretty well these days. Yes, I'm sooooooo glad that I'm done with chemo. It was a tough decision for me, because part of me wanted to finish the whole course of treatment. However, my neuropathy in my fingers and feet, was getting to a point that was uncomfortable and wouldn't go away or even lessen, before my next chemo appointment. My doctor said I didn't have to finish because there would be a chance that the neuropathy would become permanent. Seeing as I want comfortable feet to exercise with, I chose to quit. Plus, it seemed the right thing to do. The kids are home from school for the summer and this makes it a whole lot easier. They (and my honey) are so excited that I'm done.

It's taking longer than I thought to get my energy back, but it is definitely improving as time goes on. It's a slow, steady process.

I taught a few routines in Jazzercise earlier this week. It was so great. My students made me cry - they are soooo awesome. However, I think I overdid it, because I was pretty pooped yesterday. Walking to and from the Palm Desert park to see the fireworks, probably didn't help matters! The fireworks were so great. I really love to see them. The boys were excited, but didn't appreciate the long walk.

What's next you ask? Well, we watch it using CT scans and blood work. I will get my CT scan at the end of July. It will be a new challenge, to wait for those results. I think Tom is dreading this part of the whole adventure. What if it comes back? What do we do? I still am of the belief that it won't. It truly is out of our hands, anyway. God only knows and if it comes back He will have a plan by then.

Meanwhile, I intend to enjoy every moment I have. I'm anxious to get involved in the schools and church again.

Thanks for being so patient everyone. There probably won't be as many postings as before. Just know that being able to put down how we feel here has been very helpful in our adventure. You all have been so great. Please keep checking. You never know what we may share with all of you.