Because Gratitude

You know, I read a lot about how in the midst of trials and affliction we need to be grateful.  And, I even heard last night at Institute class we need to be grateful for our tribulations.  Now, I’m not at that point yet.  I’m not there – grateful for the brain tumors, rare disease diagnosis, losing my job, the lifestyle I had before all of this.  Maybe I will be, one day, but today is not that day.

But, I will say that I have thought about some of the blessings in my life, that have come since diagnosis.  Maybe I wouldn’t choose these, but I don’t think that matters.  I mean, a blessing is a blessing, right?  Who am I to say, “Oh,  thank you Lord for this blessing but I wanted that one, instead?”  Nono.  Doesn’t work that way.  AT LEAST - I know now that it doesn’t work that way.   And, I guess isn’t that part of life?  To learn, grow, progress, and see things with new eyes?

So, here we go.  Now, a small disclaimer:  this isn’t an open invitation to discuss Obamacare, or the ACA.  I actually have very strong feelings about that and I am not going to go into here.  Because gratitude.  I am a recipient.  And, I need to say thank you.  Thank You.  To those of you that have been affected negatively by Obamacare – I have been affected in a positive way.  I don’t know if this makes any difference to you – but, I Thank You for helping me with my medical issues.

As things have progressed since the first of the year, I haven’t had to pay for any of my medications.  I take many medications that I will not list here, but each time I leave the pharmacy, I say a small “Thank You” to Heavenly Father and to those of you have been burdened.  This is a huge deal.  Separate from the fact that I had to pay $500 to the Feds for taxes for last year (Unemployment monies that I am no longer eligible to receive) things are pretty tight right now.  Very tight.  Thankfully, Mom loaned me the money for the Feds but other than that?  I don’t know how it would work if I had to pay monthly for all my medications.  I haven’t ever added up that monthly cost because I know the total amount would sicken me about as much as the $500 tax bill did!

Each time I have a brain scan, or abdominal ultrasound, or breast MRI, or doctor visit, I don’t have to pay for those either.  Wow.

Just sitting here, typing this out, I’m overwhelmed.  I may get on the pity pot many times a day about how my life has changed negatively and I cannot do the things I once did (financially or sometimes otherwise), I am so thankful to have the burden of my medical being taken care of today.  Again, I feel bad for those of you who are impacted negatively by Obamacare, because I feel I am a cause of your pain and struggle.  I would be remiss if I didn’t Thank You for helping me.


(Fun) Fact Friday 4/11/14

This isn’t really fun, but it is a fact and it is Friday.

4 months ago today I made a life-changing decision.

  • I decided that I was not going to worry about uterine cancer anymore. 
  • I decided that I wasn’t going to submit myself to any further pelvic ultrasounds (if you’ve ever had one before, you get me here.)
  • I decided that I am powerful and have choices!

Granted, this was a very hard decision, because in choosing to have a prophylactic hysterectomy I wrote in stone that I would never be a biological mother (not even considering my age and any other factors against me).  I weighed this out very carefully all of last year, and decided that not getting uterine cancer trumped all.

Take that Cowden’s Syndrome.

Neurology day on #BrainTumorThursday

It seems only fitting that I saw Dr. D (neurologist) this morning.  I can’t believe it’s coming up on 3 years since the brain surgeries!  Regardless of timing, seeing him (and the neurosurgeon) always leaves me a little emotionally drained.

I told him about some symptoms I have experienced lately, and I always seem to struggle with which doctor to tell my symptoms to.  Tingling, dizziness, etc., that could be caused by tons of things, right?  Anyway, I told him what’s been going on (I started a new medication to help manage my anxiety and depression), and he had said, “Well, you did have brain surgery,” but not in a flippant way.  He said that since the brain surgery my body may need more time to process new things (medication) and I should take it every few days, starting out.

He also said these things I’m experiencing could be par for the course (because of the surgeries) and as long as they aren’t non-stop, he’s not super-concerned.

Lastly, he did all his neurological tests, and then said, “Dr. K sure did a good job on your surgery.”



Me (Photo of the day #2, 4/5/14)


Walking at the park today, I felt strong. I felt like the “Old Heather”, the one before brain tumors and rare diseases. I felt normal. I forgot about hospitals and doctor appointments; brain tumors and Rare Diseases. I walked. I breathed deep. I owned my afternoon. I did it and it was mine.

It was good.

Fun Fact Friday 4/4/14

When I was in Junior High School, I was quite the little note-writer.  Come on, though.  That’s what preteen girls did, right?  Write notes to each other at school!

A few friends of mine and I thought we were really smart and decided to make “Code Names” for ourselves.  That way…if we lost one of the notes, or a teacher caught us while we were writing or reading, the other person wouldn’t get caught!

My Code Name was “Duran Duran”.  Another friend’s name was “Thompson Twins” and I remember a 3rd being “Culture Club”.

 I loved the 80′s!