Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Round 3

This is Becky.  I keep waiting for Tara to post; but she's becoming a busy girl; so I'll do it this time.  Maybe she's not posting because she's kindof felt yucky since Saturday.  We did have 2 pretty good weeks in a row; so to start feeling yucky again when she's not even taking Temodar is weird.  Maybe these drugs have delayed effects.  She's always got some possible Avastin (clinical trial) in her; but we just don't know why she doesn't feel good.  It is possible she just has a touch of the flu bug that has been going around.  It's a weird place to be in - if Tara ever feels sick; you blame it on the drugs - but we must consider people can just get sick without chemo in their lives.  She was itchy today and I spoke with Terri and Terri said that is one of the side effects of Avastin.  So, possibly Tara is on the Avastin; but we just won't know.  It's so strange to hope Tara does well enough with the Temodar so the docs can give her MORE milligrams of Temodar which will likely make her more sick; but I want the higher milligrams on the other hand because I want to fight this as hard as we can.  It's not really a great spot to be in; hoping your daughter can have stronger meds; but hating it at the same time.  Definitely a Catch 22.  Tara doesn't feel horrible and she still goes to work and functions; but she's just kindof not herself.  BUT, for about 2 weeks she felt really good!  So, we will hope for that again this coming month.  We are just grateful that radiation is over - at least she's not tired and sick both!  That radiation was really tough.

So, we start Round 3 tomorrow.  Dr. Shapiro will most likely increase the dosage of Temodar to somewhere in the 300 milligram range.  If Tara does okay this month; she will continue on that dosage for the rest of the 11 months.

I have heard from some friend in the Northpoint Ward that every single prayer that is said for any reason at all includes Tara in the prayer - not just a prayer of comfort or peace, but a miracle of healing is prayed for.  Thanks to new Bishop Kindt and his ward which is full of people who don't even know Tara.  This will continue through this weekend.  Thank you all so much and all you other people who still keep praying and praying.  I know I feel your prayers, and I'm sure Tara would say the same thing.  I am so touched by so many.

Tara is now the choir director for the Estate Groves Ward and I'm the choir pianist.  I hope she has fun bossing me around!  I guess it's payback time for all the hours in her life I told her "what to do" as she practiced the piano.  Seriously, it will be a great experience for her - I know (oops italic again) the Estate Groves Ward choir members will love Tara.  She is very musically talented and this will be fun. 

On a positive note, Tara and I have enjoyed exploring some new Thai restaurants.  I have decided that at my "older" age (ha ha) I can now spoil my kids whenever I feel like it.  After years of being practical, it's okay to let loose a little.  So, after clinical trial days or doctor days, Tara and I will try to find a Thai restaurant and Tara LOVES it!  It's pretty healthy and we always order brown rice. I also enjoy spoiling Brigham.  Ryan wasn't exactly thrilled with me when I bought Brigham treats on two different occasions at a game and a play!  That's a grandma's privilege.  He remembered how I "never" did it for him growing up and now Brig will "want" treats all the time.  No worries, I'm just the grandma and the parents have to deal with those other issues.

Cherish your days - grab those moments when you can!  We WILL get through this - only 5 days a month, 5 days a month (we keep telling ourselves that).  

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Elder Cook

On Friday night I had the privelege to sit down with Elder Cook. My family along with Josh's family joined us. I was going to be receiving a blessing from an Apostle. My heart had been going crazy since the moment I knew I was going to get to meet him. I had no idea I would be receiving a blessing. Elder Cook put my name in the Salt Lake temple a few months ago when we first found out about my cancer. He was the one who prayed for me when the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve met in the temple on a Thursday in May.  (the night of my bridal shower). Every Thursday they meet in the temple for a meeting and have a prayer. President Monson goes through the names that are brought to the temple and then one of the members prays for those names along with other things. I felt honored to have my name in the pile that was prayed for. I wanted to know more about what happened that day so we arranged for me to meet him. Of course, the whole family came! I would not have missed it either. Travis and Chol considered driving down for the experience. This was a once in a lifetime experience. Elder Cook was so kind and full with the spirit. He told our family about the experience and then told us of another member of the Seventy who had struggled with a brain tumor as I am. He was very loving and shared many special things with us. He did lay his hands upon my head and give me a blessing. The things he said and shared are things I want to remain close to my heart but I will share the feeling of overwhelming love from the Savior. The blessing made me want to multiply my faith and well-doing. It gave me yet another confirmation that God does hear our prayers and God will answer our prayers. He does love us and he does want us to be happy. Satan is the only one who desires for us to be miserable. Christ loves laughter and learning. I know without a doubt that Elder Cook is called of God and that he is a mouthpiece for the Lord. I know that God does love me and my family. Friday night was a night I will never forget. I wish their hands could have stayed on my head forever. Yes, the priesthood is the same and I have had other blessings but this one was extra special and will remain vivid in my memory forever.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

A long long day

Yesterday will go down in history as one of the longest days of my life. First I woke up at 4:45 so I could take my father to the airport. All went well on the way to the airport but havock broke out the second I got to work. Well to start things out, I got to work at 6:20 AM. There is a heavy duty alarm on the office and no I did not set off the alarm. I was smart enough to wait in my car for Sean. He is always the first in the office becuase he has to be there when the stock market opens. Yesterday Sean got there at about 6:40 and took care of the I only sat in my car for 20 minutes. As soon as I got in the office I had a million things to do. I had no time to be tired or lazy... and as soon as Shelley got to work I of course had more things to do. We ran around the whole day trying to get everyone else ready for their meetings. At 5:00 PM I left the office to pick up my dad from the airport and this is where the real problems started! I made it about a mile and a half on the freeway before my back right tire blew...never had that happen before! Luckily I was in the right hand lane and close to an exit. I exited and pulled to the side on the off ramp. I called my mom and told her what had happened and she headed on her way to get my dad and then they would come get me. We were trying to hurry to Nate's game! He was starting and I was really excited to see him play. I knew it would be about 40 minutes so I just pulled out a lawn chair from the back of the car and made myself at home on the side of the road in North Scottsdale. I sat there for 15 or 20 minutes and then a guy walked up to me and asked if he could change my tire. He said his wife drove home and saw me and then continued to tell me how dissapointed he was the no one else has stopped to help me. He was extremely nice and got me on the road again...I thought. He watched me drive away and told me how to get back on the freeway. As soon as I pulled my u turn to get back on the freeway, my spare tire blew! Great - twice in one day! I was on the phone with my dad and he told me to stay in the I did. Then about a minute later traffic had cleared so I got out of my car and got on the sidewalk next to my car. This is when the accidentS happened. I watched all three of them happen. Everyone else seemed to get around me fine but one guy wasn't paying attention and had to slam on his breaks. This caused the person behind him to hit and the person behind him...yes three. The ambulance came and the police and everything. They asked me if I was okay and I told them I just had a flat. The ambulance guy looked me in the eye and said "now don't you think this was your fault, someone back there was not watching the road. This happens all the time. This happens all the time." That was exactly what I needed to hear. I was thinking that it was my fault and that I had caused all this trouble. So I got out of it with no damage but a flat tire...or two! My mom and dad finally came to get me and we were on our way to Nate's game...just late. While on the freeway we barely missed a ladder in the middle of the road...another accident waiting to happen. I finally made it home around 9:00PM and went straight to bed. I would prefer not to have anymore yesterdays but I am glad that I do not have to pay anything...I have paid for accidents before and they are not cheap. When ever you hear that car crash, you can also hear your bank acount crying!

Nate's team didn't win but I am so glad I made it to see him in his uniform. I love going to family games. Well today has started out better already...I slept until 5:45 and I got to go with Josh to school...he is in Microeconmics right now. He will take me to work after class...I would rather stay here in school...maybe someday I will be able to finish...I miss school.

Have a grand day!

Tara Bodrero

Empty cupboard

This is Becky.

I just now did a very cool thing.  I needed more room for glasses in my cupboard - and guess what went to the laundry room with our medicine box we rarely use?  You guessed it!  ALL the headache medication!!!  No more Advil, no more Aleve, no more Extra Strength Tylenol, no more extra headache relief with caffeine, no more generic brand Ibuprofen!!  Are we possibly returning to that "we never go to the doctor or take medicine" family again??  Do you have any idea how good it felt to put that medicine AWAY???

I'm just so happy this week - can it be because Tara is feeling great?  Maybe.  I have great kids, a great husband, and an awesome grandson, and the best in-laws ever!  Life is good. I am so blessed.  I also have great friends and supporters!!  That miracle we need WILL happen!  We will enjoy the next two weeks before chemo starts again.  Friday is clinical trial day; but Tara doesn't seem to be exhibiting any side effects from that - maybe she's on the placebo..... we'll see - I hope she's on the real stuff!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

I have the best life. and chili's experience

I have the best life. No one can compete...sorry I take the cake in that category. I have been so blessed and I continue to be blessed. Today I had fun doing the dishes and landry and running errands with Joshua, then watched a BYU game while he did homework (they lost...) I got to hang out with the Bodrero family for a few hours and now I get to go see my daddy and all our neighbors and friends. Really, try to compare your life to mine! Mine wins everytime. I am walking, talking, laughing...a lot, exercising, eating and looking like nothing is wrong at all! if I had hair, no one would ever know that I am fighting cancer. And to make my perfect day better...I just looked out the window and saw the most beautiful sunset ever. So I was pondering life a lot today. Pondering how easy it is for some to accidentally bring life and for the fight some have to bring life. A life can end at any time, some with notice, some without. Is one better than the other? Or does it depend on the family and the circumstance? What is it like to lose a loved one? I kind of know how it feels to be the loved one that could be lost but how would I feel if this was my Rachel or Nathan going through this? I know I would not do well. I was thinking again today about what my dad told me the day after I found out I had the tumor. "You got your wish". I did get my wish. If Nathan or Rachel or any family member had this I know that I would wish it was me. I got my wish and I am so happy that wishes and dreams do come true. I am honestly blessed because of this trial and I will cherish what I have learned and the experinence I am having for the rest of my life.

Last week Josh and I went to Chili's for our date night...suprised? ha! Josh loves burgers second to me and Chili's do a good burger! So we decided to color a chili for a dollar to go towards childrens cancer. We did the dollar chilli because I am donating my veins every two weeks for reserach and I gave my tumor away and I have no idea how much that can help...hopefully more than a dollar! I really just needed something to color so I grabbed a chili and started with my four crayons. Ever since I saw a picture of Sadie  with her "Cancer Fears Me" beanie I have decided that cancer fears me too! So I wrote that on my chili and wrote underneath, Tara Bodrero fighting Brain Cancer 2010-2011. I guess the lay that sat up saw my chili and really liked it. She hung it in a special spot so it would not get lost amiss all the other Chili's and she contacted me today via facebook and told me how she felt. I have another one praying for me! yaya. It was really neat and I rather enjoyed her email. I think Josh and I will be back at Chili's next week to see my Chili and my new angel who has joined our forces.

God will not abandon us.


Tara Bodrero

PS. If you are ever feeling blue, watch the sunset

Treasuring the Good Days

From Becky...

Tara finished her week of chemo!  That's always good.  By Thursday (she finished Tuesday night) she was feeling so much better.  (at least that's what she tells me).  Sometimes it's hard for me as the mother to REALLY know how she's feeling. Tara and I have a unique "deal" going on.  She doesn't like to tell me when she doesn't feel good, (even though I always want to know the truth) and I don't want to ever let her see my fears.When I cried tears of relief at the last MRI, Tara said, "Mom, you really were scared and all this time you have been telling me you were not worried." She has seen me break down at times; but I try to keep it to a minimum!  A few that stick out are..... May 14th at EVDI when we saw the tumor, and that Thursday after surgery when I had to tell her about the pathology report.  Those were the two worst break downs I've had while Tara was watching..... I have  had many of my own private breakdowns.

Anyway, this is a happy post, so I'll continue....signs a mother knows Tara is normal (since she doesn't like to tell me if she doesn't feel well)

SHE vacuums the sofas and cushions instead of lying on the couch watching me vacuum.
SHE has energy to go grocery shopping and make her husband homemade cookies for a picnic on their Friday night date.
SHE smiles more and even wants to borrow my bicycle to exercise!
She is even a bit more fiesty sometimes - back to her old self.

My thoughts for today are to treasure the good times.  Treasure those days that you can have the good health to DO what you want to do.  We treasure those days around here.  Every day is a blessing and our friends and family and our faith are blessings also.  There is a scripture in 2 Nephi about opposition - if we never knew opposition, we couldn't appreciate the good things and there is so much joy in the good moments.  We will enjoy the next 2 1/2 weeks before chemo starts again.

We miss Rachel at this house, our table is small with only 3 people around it.  Thank heavens Tara & Josh and Ryan & Steph will join us for dinner sometimes!  There is no one here to eat all the ice cream, make us laugh when she regales us with stories of her workday, one less beautiful face to look at, and the list of things we miss about Rachel goes on and on.  We turned on Skype last night while we ate dinner and it was so fun for us to see Rachel and for her to give Nate tips on school life.  Nate misses that.  Lots of happiness and vitality left this house when Rachel went to college.  We love you Rachel.  We know Travis will keep track of Rachel and fight all the boys off for us!  (ha, ha)

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Watching Josh do homework

So I am sitting here on a wonderful Wednesday night just overjoyed that I don't have to take chemo for another month and wathcing Josh do his homework. Pathetic I know! He gets really excited about his homeowrk sometimes and I just can't stand to miss the fun so I stick around and sit by him...actually I am too scared to be in any of these rooms in this huge scary house without him...that's the real truth. So I am sitting here watching Josh and reading past posts and comments and then started giggleing thinking about all the emails I get from people who can't figure out how to post! They have importnat, great things to say but can't figure them out because they don't know how to use the website completely. Not a problem at all...just rather comical sometimes to see how frusterated people get because they cannot post! I love your posts by the way...whether via email or straight-up posts! So on with my ponder... I was just thinking...if you can't post how are you ever supposed to fix your computer? And then I thought to myself and kind of out loud (sometimes I dstract Josh with my crazy ideas and funny jokes Rick Horton sends me) "Josh can fix their computers!" Please let me do a little bragging...

My adorable husband... who literally just cheered five seconds ago because he figured out a problem... builds computers. Yes he actually builds them and does it for fun. Growing up he used to research all the best parts and build them virtually on the computer. One day he and his friend got together and actually bought the parts and put together an awesome computer. Through all of his study he has not only learned how to build computers, but also fix computers...which has come in very handy at the Schlappi home. If it has to do with technology Josh can pretty much fix it or tell you if you need a new one. Sometimes computers just get so old and outdated it is not worth it to fix one because you can get a good computer nowdays for a decent price. So Josh walks in and in about 15 minutes can tell you how effective your computer is. Josh helped me buy my laptop. He asked me what my needs were and where I would spend the most time and found me the perfect laptop. We go to Best Buy every date night it seems and last week when we were there he just became discusted with how companies rip people off. They tell you that you need all this fancy stuff when in don't. It is just a reason for them to make the price higher. Anyway, this is long enough I guess my bragging/recent ponder/idea to make extra money needs to come to an end.

In short. Josh rocks and if you need computer help give him a call. He is a pretty nice guy and knows a lot about computer and technology.

He can fix and build computers along with consult on how to find the right computer/laptop for you.

Monday, September 6, 2010

One treatment left!

After I take my next chemo dosage tonight in 30 minutes, I will only have one more treatment left this month! Then I get a few weeks off! Today I did much much better than the last two days...maybe cause I labored so much today on this blessed holiday. I was so busy I did not have time for my head to hurt or for it to hinder me so it didn't! I need to be this busy everyday! We have offically stolen a dog from my parents house. KC now happily lives with Josh and I. In the few short days she has lived here she has put on weight and made a new purple friend. She carries around this little TY stuffed animal around so tenderly but always by the head. she sticks the whole head in her mouth and seriously tenderly carries it around. She never goes anywhere without it and sleeps with it right by her side. It is the cutest thing in the whole world. Josh and I adore her and love having her with us.

I am happy to announce that the port is doing much much better...I really don't think it could have been doing worse. Just as the doctor said, it gets better every single day and it is hard to sleep. Speed bumps are still an mom flies over them and they rattle my whole body which then sends pain straight to the port...we all have to remind her not to take them at 35 MPH! I have had bad luck today with running into things and maybe that is the only reason I still have pain. Josh accidentally slammed the door on my head...I really don't know how it happened and he felt horrible. It hurt for a while but the bump is already going down! :) He was so sad but I reassured him that I would surely hurt him someday and feel really bad so he need not worry about it. I am so accident prone. In fact I asked every doctor, surgeon, and nurse if there was ANY WAY I COULD POSSIBLY hurt this port. If there was a way...I assure you, my body would find it and make it happen. They told me that some people play with them subconsciously and actually flip them around. I have made my family and co workers aware of this and if I subconsciously play with it they will remind me to stop! Today I don't think that I hurt the port or ruined anything but I sure smacked it hard. Somehow when I was opening the fridge it hit me! It took my hand and shoved it straight into my port which shoved me straight into pure agony...Thanks fridge! I use the other side of the fridge now. It actaully looks pretty cool now because the incisions are turning cool colors with the brusing.

Well battery is about to die on the computer. I hope you all had a marvelous Labor Day!

One more day down!

Tara Bodrero

And if I get them in time, here are some pictures from the Goo Goo Dolls concert Josh and I went to for my birthday and the most awesome t shirt I will be purchasing soon!

I cannot tell you how happy am that I still have eyebrows to make me look like a girl! :) Count your many blessings!

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Chemo again

This is Becky.  Tara and my sister think I should start my own blog - but I'm not sure I have that much to say to create my own deal - so this will be short - but my mother's heart is hurting again today.  Tara came over for breakfast and she had that "look" on her face.  She has been so sore the past few days because of the port; but this was not a "my neck and shoulders hurt" face, it was a "I'm sick" face.  Brought back memories of radiation and chemo that we finished not too long ago.  I guess I was overly optimistic and was wishing she would be able to stomach chemo without too much problems.  She is still functioning; just feels sick.  I keep telling myself this is only for 5 days - now it's for only 4 more.  That chemo must be so strong - take it one night in a pill form and the next day you're SICK!  That works fast.  Let's think positive - it must be working that fast on those dreaded cells that probably don't even exist anymore in her head because so many miracles are working in her behalf.

It's tough to be the one in pain, and the one watching the child in pain. No matter that Tara is a grown woman now; she's still my child and I don't like it.  Yesterday when she had the IV and it really hurt; I cried along with her.  She said it wasn't helping; so I had to buck up and stop.  One positive note - she said at least her body isn't tired (the radiation sort of tired) she just feels sick and her head aches.  Josh is the man of the hour and got her to take Tylenol; thanks Josh - he even got her to take Vicaden last night so she could sleep. Tara is anti-pain pills.

Love you all!  Thanks for all your thoughts and prayers!!!  We WILL get through this.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Surgery Went Fine

Surgery went fine and sometime when I have more energy I can tell you all about how I was awake and what happened. Today i am just happy to be able to move my arm. The surgery had more effects than we thought it would and sleeping and being normal are hard for me. I am rather bruised up and sore. Today was my first infusion with the port and the nurse promised that it will never hurt as bad as it did today...and it is a good thing because if it ever hurts that bad again I am afraid I am going to have to rip the port out and stick with the fat IV's from now on. It is just so tender and the needle the stuck in my chest was about an inch long and they just went straight down! At least it is over for 2 weeks. Hopefully a lot of healing goes on in that time. I think a few girls driving out of the hospital today knew I was sad. They rolled down their window and gave me a pretty yellow orchid. One way to put a smile on a strangers face and turn their whole day around is a smile flower. I about cried in the parking garage waiting for my mom. I was just so grateful for that flower. I think it was a left over flower from one of their stays but the flower did not feel left over at all! By now the heat has killed that yellow flower but the heat will never kill the happiness that has remained inside since those girls gave me my yellow flower.

Then of course I walk into wal mart to get milk and had the best check out man ever. He just made me smile and turned completely around by a few strangers. I want to be someone's stranger who makes them happy sometime...I don't think I can carry around yellow flowers though...I will just have to get creative

Well mother is calling...must go!

Tara Bodrero