Everyday is a Reminder of How Blessed I Am !!

Remember the post order are from most current to the past ones.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Christmas Cheer

I am taken back by all the Christmas Blessing we have recieved this year. There are so many angels on earth with such big hearts. My kids had one of the best Christmas's ever thanks to all the support we recieved from family and friends. And even though I catch myself wondering if this is my last Christmas with them, my overwhelming fears are actually getting better.
  I stopped taking the Ritalin for fatigue last week and have found myself overly tired all over again. However, I keep reminding myself that I am halfway through the year of interferon treatments and that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. My family has been very supportive in putting up with my tired and grouchy butt. The only other issues I seem to be facing is the daily nausea and leg pains on the days after injections. It is such a deep pain, especially in my pelvic area and upper legs.
  I go back to see oncologist in Jan and the Dermatologist in March. Praying that no other issues arise.
May everyone have a Blessed and Merry Chirstmas and a safe and Happy New Year. (i am so burning the 2011 calendar! What a year....geez)

Monday, December 5, 2011


As the holidays are upon us, I find myself more thankful then ever. I am so thankful that I have such a supportive family, caring friends, and prayful church family and more. We never know how many more Thanksgivings or Christmas memories we will have the opportunity to make, so my goal is to make sure each one counts. I have gotten better about not letting fear overcome me each day. Maybe its medication or maybe its the fact that I keep my mind busy at all times with other things. I just want to have many many more memories with my family. I am trying to focus more on the positive. This past friday I had a biopsy done from a place on my back. Please pray it comes back negative. I am still doing the three times a week Interferon injections. The leg pain is better, except the days I work several twelve hour shifts in a row. The fatigue seems to be improving. Maybe my body is finally getting use to it all. The nausea comes & goes. My husband is so wonderful. He keeps me going day by day. I still have problems trying to cut back my sugar intake, especially at this time of year, but I am working on it. I will try to keep more updates. I went into a bubble there for awhile, not wanting to talk about the beast...isolating myself from people, but working my way back to getting my life back.....one day at a time.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011


wow...after reading the last post that i posted, i think i was having a full anxiety attack while writing. i have been off work the past five days and have started to feel more peace. peace is something that has never come easy for me.i tend to worry about everything, just like my mom. my husband on the other hand doesnt worry much at all. this weekend he says to me,   melanoma is a thing of your past, unless it comes up again dont look back....and if it does come back we will deal with it then. he makes it sound so easy.  another thing that happened this week, we found ourselves in a situation where we were in need of some help. i sent out a prayer request and the number of people that showed up to help was just overwhelming. we are so blessed to have such caring people in our lives.
i am working the next couple days and i am looking forward to spending the day with my mom at a womens health conference on friday. i hope my fears continue to get better each day.

Saturday, September 3, 2011


So yesterday I went to see the Dermatologist for my three month skin check. He tells me that he doesn't see any "areas of concern" and that he will see me in three months. As I am sitting there listening to him, I almost went into panic mode. I realized that I am trusting my life in this mans hands. If he misses something, will I find it? If we both miss it will it be widespread before I see him again in three months? I cannot handle the fear of not being in control of this situation. (Although I know I am not the one ultimately in control)  The spot on my arm come up in Jan. It grew so fast and so deep. It scares me so bad. Being a nurse I have seen to much and know too much. I know that docs have their good days and bad just like all of us. I left there still having this awful feeling in my stomach that something terrible is going to happen. I have had this gut feeling for two weeks now.
So then after that apt., I go to see the psych doc for the first time since all this started in Feb. I am telling him about this stage of fear that I can't get through. He prescribes Cymbalta 90mg. He says its all normal and in a couple of weeks I should notice a difference. (Note that I have been on cymbalta 60mg since June). He then begins to ask me about my support system. I have to tell you that I am so blessed in this area. I have the greatest husband and kids. My family and friends are supportive. I will never be able to pay my mom back for all her support. The entire family has went above and beyond. Its then that I realize, I am not afraid to die, I am just afraid of leaving my family. I want to see my kids grow up and spend time with family and friends (bargining). I know I am a stage 2b but I am telling you I have this really bad feeling.
The doc also gave me Remeron to help me sleep and not stay up thinking about things all the time. Which brings me to my next issue. My body has to be so confused. I am taking Ritalin in the mornings to fight the fatigue and be able to go to work for 12 hrs, along with the Cymbalta. Then at night i am taking the remeron to help me sleep and on the days i have injections i am taking Zofran and Ativan. My poor heart doesn't know wether to speed up or slow down. Can this be good?
I am done rambling now. Maybe its the interferon that is making my mind go crazy. Maybe its not. I just wish I could get over this whole fear stage.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Tuesday, August 30, 2011


restarted interferon injections last night after a break for week and couple days, took injection at eight and woke up at midnight with uncontrollable chills and shaking, now m y whole body hurts and i feel like i have been ran over. my legs are killing me...but ..i am going to work my six to six shift this morning and be positive and hope i make a difference in the lives of my patients.

Friday, August 26, 2011

The Beginning

My name is Rachel and I am 35 yrs old. I have been married for 13 yrs to a wonderful man named Jerry. We have three blessings...Megan 13, Dawson 12, and Amy 10. I am starting a blog in attempt to keep my sanity and hopefully find answers to some questions and meet others and hear their stories.

In Jan 2010 I had a smal "pimple" come up on my left upper arm. It wlas the same color as my skin and of no concern to me. My husband kept saying "that thing has been there a while, i think you should have it looked at." Being a nurse, I put it off and figured it will go away. It did not. First part of Feb I went to family doc. He had me use some cream for a couple weeks then took it off and stated it was prob a granulation, no worries.

A couple week later i get the call its Melanoma. So i went to surgery had wide excision they traced the lymph node and removed it. PET scan and MRI negative.

It came back with no spreading to the lymph nodes but was a little over the 4 cm mark.

It was discussed to do nothing or start Interferon. I started the treatment in May IV, then started sub Q in June. It has not been nice to me. As of Monday, I will be reducing the dose in almost half.

Here are some of my questions:
1. Did anyone think the Interferon gets easier after a certain point?
2. I am taking cymbalta in the mornings, as well as Ritalin. I take ativan and zofran on days of injections. Is there anything else i should take? And does anyone else have experience with Ritalin for fatigue?
3. When is this feeling of living in fear each day going to pass?

I am eager to hear your stories. Thank you.