Thursday, October 25, 2012

The Race...Picture Tribute!

This post is like all the others in that I could write page after page of all the wonderful things going on around me.  I find myself in bed early tonight....finally rested after a busy and exciting weekend.  So many emotions....all wonderful....

Team Terri rocked it OUT!!!!!  

Pictures worth more than a thousand words:

Chi Omega Love!!!!!   <3

Some of my BEAUTIFUL Benton friends.....<3

Ang & Debra!  <3

The table was beautiful and food yummy!  <3

JUST in case the firemen ran out.....Pink Beads!  <3

Like no time has passed....smiles on every face....laughter was heard!  xoxoxoxoxoxo

Cupcakes from "Fat Bottom Girls" Cupcakes.....need I say more????  <3

High School Friends.....I love my Newport peeps!  <3

New Friends!  <3 

Jon = Proof that "Real Men Wear Pink"  <3

Daughters......Exactly WHY we need a CURE!  <3 <3 <3

Back of Team Terri Shirt.....Psalm 119:50 <3

Front of Team Terri Shirt.....Love it!!!!  <3
Why I walk.....This is for you, Mom!  Oh, how I miss you!  <3

This pic just makes me smile!  Chi Omega....Sisters forever!  <3

My brother's family!  Precious!!  <3

My David....<3 -- Another Real Man in Pink!  <3

I love Ms. Annette!  This is what a "survivor" looks like!  <3

Team Terri has friends in high places!  Shane Broadway and Gov. Beebe!  <3

Sweet Jana.  She made all of this possible!  Love Love Love her!!!!  <3

Jon & Holly.....Cute Couple in "Pink"  <3

Race is serious business.....:))

My mom's best friend throughout her entire life.....Judy.  I love her!!!!  <3  I'm sure my mom is smiling at this pic!  

Lotsa laughs throughout with Kimmie & Susan!  Love these girls!  <3

Love Lonna....and glad baseball places her in my path!  <3

My sistas.....Marsha and Jana!  <3

More laughs!!!  :)  I looked like a dork....but did NOT care!  :)

Another sisterhood pic!  <3

That pink tractor was just cool!!!! 

Sweet kiddos....Sam and Jacee!


Man!  That's a LOT of pink.....:)

 My beautiful friends...Traci and Lori!  <3

My BFFs right there! Love these girls!  So beautiful!  They NEVER left my side!
Our best attempt at a group pic.....not everyone....but here is Team Terri!  <3
I love you mom.....

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Momma HAD Cancer....:))

Guess I can appropriately change the name of my blog Momma "HAD" Cancer.....  My God, my Team and I sorta kicked its butt a little!  :)

Met with Dr. Sneed on Monday to "formally" discuss my scans that I had following my last treatment.  I got the "all clear" that I've....correction....WE have been praying for in recent weeks.  Some call it "clinical remission".....others "cancer free"....I believe I will call it God's miracle.  His love never failed me.  Not even once.   I don't go back until January!  :)  Praise The Lord!!

Unfortunately, I've gotta take care of some "housekeeping"......
I've been hesitant about continuing to blog.  I've been working on this post for a while.  Funny how some people are.  Most of my "readers" (gosh....that came out like I am a Best-Selling author or something....ha!  I know that isn't the case!)  have had nothing but encouraging and positive things to say.  "Inspiration" has been a word I've heard frequently.  "Strong" is another one.  Funny, I've felt neither of those a majority of the time.  I have TOTALLY written this blog from an honest place.  Sad that I feel forced to defend it......which is why I've not written in a bit.  There are acutally those out there that have taken my words and twisted their meaning and their intention and even used them against me.  Not to my face of course.....:)  I would welcome negtive comments openly.....but gossiping seems to be MUCH more enjoyable. I know because I, too, have been guilty of this.  Sadly. I know who ya are and what ya said.  :)) hurt.  But....I realize the devil likes to creep in......hiding behind the Bible to do his work.  So after some soul searching.....I am back.  I have so much more to say.  And I'm not going to worry anymore about how "it looks to others" or whatever.  They've not traveled in my shoes.  Nor do they really know me.  So why should it bother me?  Im choosing to no longer let it.  I forgive you.  And hope you learn as I have. 

I will no longer DEFEND my actions, my blogs, my facebook statuses, my words, my faith, OR my need to share God's grace.  Period.  This right MY space.  And if the devil uses even ONE gossipy woman to say something ugly and shut this down.....then I am the weak one.  Am I perfect?  Heck fire no!!  Do I make bad decisions and mistakes?  You betcha.  My friends and family and my Lord love me anyway.  Anyone who doesn't....just quite frankly isn't welcome here.  So....take that Satan!!!! Bam! Lesson learned.....and I'm now a stronger "more informed" person! Blessings in disguise.....I tell ya!  I love to share scripture, songs, or whatever helps me to stay on the right path on a certain day. Does it make me better than you?  Absolutely NOT!  Just maybe it can help others too.  And quite frankly, I'm gettin old and forgetful.  This is my life here......And I love it.

I have tickets to Casting Crowns Saturday night and I Can.Not.Wait!!!  They are my favorite.  I've been listening to almost nothing but this week getting pumped up to worship with them and siked that I will know EVERY word to EVERY song!  :)  Its on the eve of Sam's 16th birthday.  What a way to bring it worshipping together!  We have so much to celebrate!!  Anyway,  as I was struggling with the aftermath of hearing some mean and ugly things....this song came on......

Jesus IS a friend of sinners, just like me.  Let us reach with open hearts and open doors.....Break our hearts for what breaks Yours.  Pickin on me when I was down is kinda wrong.  Down right mean.  But Jesus taught us to forgive.  So I am.  I'm a happy happy girl!  I no longer want to be held captive by others' mistakes either.  Feels good!!!

Cancer hasn't necessarily been a negative thing for me.  It has changed my perspective so much.  Of course it was a miserable experience phyically. has shown me how my own thoughts and past mistakes have been keeping me captive for so long.  I have finally found the courage to release the hold I had on MYSELF.  That is possible folks.....due to God's grace.  Facing your own mortality can be a really scary place without the grace we are all promised.  Its there....we just have to accept it.  I'm not any less human than I was before. I still screw up and use my words unwisely at times.  But the fact that I catch myself and recognize it.....makes me a better Christian.  Makes me a more devoted child of God. 

I'm not known for being very tactful.  In fact, I'm pretty blunt to a fault.  I'm well aware that this post is pretty "in your face" and I'm likely to take some heat for it.  I'm openly aware of my sins and trying to be slow to point out those of others.  My circle is small....but oh so close.  Cancer has brought so much goodness.  I will probably write about it for many years to come.  Friends.  Ones I barely knew before are now on my speed dial.  Ones I may have hurt before.....who forgave.  Ones I haven't seen in years and years.....who I talk to daily.  Ones who have stood by me before my diagnosis and continue to do so today.  Ones who aren't just on a "bandwagon" help the chick with cancer.  Childhood buddies who contact me almost dialy to let me know I'm loved.  Strangers I NOW call friends who have offered us aid in so many different ways.  Folks....God was movin in my life to make sure we were taken care of! 

My kids have been soldiers of courage.  It has been such a rough time on them.  Due to the kindness of others I was able to provide for them and even "treat them" at times.  I had one friend earmark money to buy Syd her "first day of school" outfit....because she knows how important it is for little girls to feel pretty on the first day.  Bonus?  We can share clothes!  haha  Many have given gift cards to various restraunts so that we can enjoy dinner as a family out on occasion.  Movie passes.  The list goes on and on.  So many have fulfilled needs and the gaps in my budget so that I can still have those "feel good mom moments" of a few "extras."  It always has and will be all about them.  My children are my world and will be until I take my last breath.

We are still struggling to get back on our feet.  The aftermath of being unable to work, the travels into LR for dr appts, prescriptions and Doctor bills have hit us hard.  God has continued to provide for our every need.  I'm back at work and feel awesome!!!  My little team is getting day at a time.  The only way I know how to thank everyone is by paying it forward.  God will use my work in progress to hopefully lift someone else up who may have my journey in their future.  Not a day goes by that I don't thank God for it all.

My cancer is gone.  But its effects....both good and bad....remain forever.  I can look and the mirror and see what all it has taken from me.  But I can look into my heart and see what all it has given me.  That's the good stuff!!!

Saturday is Race for the Cure.  My team is nearly 100 strong.  100 people who are joining me in walking with thousands of others on Saturday to fight for a cure.  My mom is ironing her pink outfit in heaven.....for preparation.  I can just see her!  ha   Better watch out Cancer....we comin after you!!!  :) 

In Him,

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

That's all Folks!!! :)

I'm gonna have to "catch up" this blog in several entries I think.  SOOOO much has happened over the past week or so!  I'm overwhelmed at exactly where to start......but can't go another day without blogging my thoughts. 

First....I'll shout from the rooftops!!!  NO MO CHEMO!!!!!!!!!   Yippeeee!!!  Had my last treatment on 9/21.  This day was complete with emotion from before dawn...til WAY past dark.  Started off arriving at the high school for the "daybreak" pep rally about 5:45 am.  Today was the "Salt Bowl"....a Saline County Holiday of sorts.  Benton vs. Bryant at War Memorial Stadium.  Over 20,000 fans were there to root on their favorites.....this rivarly runs deep my friends.  ESPECIALLY with a dog in the fight!  For my Newport friends.....Bryant is our "Batesville"....:)  For Razorback Fans....Bryant is our "Alabama".....ya get the idea..... day started early... Pep Rally.....Breakfast.....Kiddos to Pep Rally.....Back to work.....and off to chemo at 1.  From Chemo....went to the Salt Bowl and all of its festivies.  Things didn't go quite our way for my Sam or the Panthers.  But I watched my son grow in integrity through his struggles and am one proud momma!

I walked into the chemo room with a different feeling today.  My labs showed that today would in fact be the "finale".....:)  Got hooked up to my bags....and settled in.  The Benedryl took effect immediately and I dozed off under a blanket when I heard the commotion coming up the hallway.....
Lordy it was a party!  :)  And I do mean party.....

At first sight....they got the ugly cry, you know....the kind that looks like "Will Smith" in the movie "Hitch".....swollen eyes, red nose.....the works....

I was so overwhelmed with love, suprise, and just pure joy.  They took time from their lives, their jobs, to come be with me on this final leg of this sprint.  Many who couldn't be there.....and I DO mean probably over a hundred....sent texts, emails, FB messages, sweet words and gifts to me.  I have had SUCH a team on this journey.....I am just so blessed.

I was met with cake - TWO cakes, "kid friendly" champagne, balloons, confetti, presents, a "No Mo Chemo sash", and even a crown!  Most of all the VERY best of friends.  I think my Sonya was the ring-leader.....with the help of many I'm sure, to pull this off.  I'm up in EVERYONE's business, so not sure how they pulled this off without me knowing.....but they did.  In fact, I came to chemo alone....expecting Sonya to pop in with chocolate and Deb to swoop in on two wheels with hugs.....but that's all.  My Syd had begged me to check out of school and come with me that day.  But I was certain it was a ploy to get out of school....and she had tests and dance practice that day.  So I said, "nice try.". 

In walks the following:
Sonya, and her daughters....Bailey and Kenzie, Shane and her three.....Nick, Victoria, and Annie, Gina, Deb, Becca, Brandie, Michelle, Jack, John, and Karen.  These along with the AOA staff...Linda, Carolyn, Jill, Josh, Beverly, Brenda, Charlene and the rest,......and even Dr. Sneed!  Usually, Im alone in the chemo room....but today, there were a couple of other patients that got to join in the fun! 

I haven't gotten all of the pics yet....but here are few from the day I had on my phone:

First....Sonya:  Adorned in pink for the occassion, and even "pole danced" with me on my IV pole!  hehe  Will she EVER know what she means to me????  Ever???

Then my Shane.....:)  Beautiful Friend.....Love her so....
My "Clinic Boyfriend"..... Josh.  And a forever friend....:)

The best oncology nurses on the PLANET....Carolyn and Linda.  Love them!  :)
Dr. HERO!  In his words...."He and I are going to be friends a LONG time!"  :)


I got pictures made with everyone there.....but not with my camera, so I've not gotten them just yet.  But I will post a follow up to this blog with a complete album!  My cake(s) were adorable, the children were precious. Everyone sipping champagne in colored stem glasses, the balloons,.... And all my friends that were there physically, and there in spirit.  I will never forget.....

Such emotion and heart-felt love.

I walked out of AOA that last day consumed with tears.  These people have gotten me through such a tough journey.  I won't allow myself to think about a reoccurance today.  The thing has brought many blessings and so defined all of the relationships in my life.  Those who have been a friend to me unselfishly.  Those who are there for me without fail.  Those who came into my life as a RESULT of the cancer.  Those who came BACK into my life to reach out in love.  Those who were there before and never left my side.  All of which, I know will be there for me and with me should my future include another fight.  It has strengthend my relationship with my God and inspired me to be a better Christ follower.  It has taught me to trust, and to see things so clearly.

I sometimes take notes for things I want to blog about.  Sometimes I just sit down and the words come.  When I hit "publish" oftentimes I'm just as suprised at what I've written as my readers.  "Chemo Brain" has caused me to sometimes forget things I really want to write about.  But I will have posts in the future....that will highlight those who are so dear to me....that have touched me beyond measure.  Those who will kill me and will be recognized against their will.  Those who don't want or need a "pat on the back" or to be recognized to feel appreciated.  Those who give lovingly as Christ would and have repeatedly given to me in both big and small ways out of just plain love.

So get ready....David, Sonya, Shane, Jana, my AOA family, Deb, Leigh, Marsha, Sandy....and many're gonna get your OWN post dedicated to my love for YOU.....very soon.  These people have given their time, their words, their presence, their prayers, their service, their money, their everything to be a friend and caretaker for me.  From diagnosis to present.  They don't use the words, "I've done enough"......They are true to their word and have never let me down.  Many times, at the expense of their families, and very large inconvenience to be there for me and to just help.  They never keep score.  They don't question.  They give of themselves with a willing heart and have taught me so much.  Their families have shown much love to me allowing me to borrow them for times in need and they were happy to do so.

I realize how this might get me into trouble with some.  There are many many folks who have stepped up in large ways and in small ways.  I can't possibly write about everyone.  I have written about many in the past.  And I've been praying and searching for answers from above on this issue. I certainly don't want to hurt any feelings.  It's not my intention at all.  What my God has told me is this......the book of James tells us that every "good and perfect gift comes from above"......and that if someone gets angry then they weren't giving with the right heart in the first place.  So.....there you have it.  I can't close this chapter without writing about my love for some of these special people.  And what's incredible is whether I thank them in a blog, on a note, with a gift, or never mention them again.....each of them would do it all again in a heartbeat.  Their "gifts" were from above.  With.Out.Question.  That's not to say that I feel like anyone will be hurt.....but its my fear, and I simply won't defend this again. 

I'm starting to feel better again.....and am going to start my own "Look Good, Feel Better" campaign.  Come Monday.....its diet time.  Gotta get the weight back off.  Gained 15 of the 41 that I'd lost.  That just plain ticks me off.....UGgggg!!  I should feel well enough to begin hitting the track again.  Got a couple of weeks before the race....Gotta get at it!  I'm going to continue working for my God and keeping a close relationship with him.  Momma's back!  I'm going to cherish every single second with my kiddos and love them more!  :)  I want to be present in church and Sunday School and active at church, since I've not felt good in so long.  I'm ready!  :)

I've wondered if I want to continue the blog.  And the truth is.....I do.  I do it for myself.  Not sure if very many read it.  But again....I do it for me.  You'll probably see alot of diet related posts....and silly entries about my daily crazy life.  It's just the right mixture of chaos and love!  I want to journal my prayer requests so that I can continue to see right before my eyes just how much my God works and answers each and every one.  I want to remember each and every memory with my kiddos, my family, my David, and my friends. 

The Race for the Cure is coming up.....and our Team Terri has grown to almost 60 members.  If you know of anyone who doesn't have a team....please share this with them.  Team Terri tshirts (optional) are also available but I have to know by Wed. at the latest.  Time is of the essence.  My Chi-O sister and dear friend, Jana, has worked so hard to get this together.....Never losing sight of its purpose.  To find a cure for our daughters.  Whatever YOUR goal.....Whomever YOU are honoring or remembering.....Join today!  :)

I have a couple of prayer requests please:

I have a couple of friends who are hurting for various reasons.  God knows their needs....please pray these unspoken needs.

My sweet friend Kara, pregnant with her first baby boy, Luke.  Kara has gestational diabetes, and has some medical fears along with those of generally being a new mommy.  She is precious to me.  Lift Kara, her husband, Thomas, and baby Luke in prayers in the weeks to come.  God be with my Kara and comfort her in ways only HE can!

And myself.  I go Wednesday for my scans.  I pray that they are all clear and with No Evidence of Disease.  I wanna dance with NED!  :)  I am a little anxious for the results.  I don't wanna jump the gun and rename this blog..."Momma HAD Cancer...."  :)  Lord, hear our prayers!

Finally.....Breast Cancer Awareness Month.  Check your boobies ladies!  Don't wait.  It makes ALL the difference in the world.....if ya don't believe me, you haven't heard my story.  Back up and read a few blogs.  Be aware!  And remember those who have fought the battle and won the fight.....and for those who sacrificed the battle and gained His glory.  Be it never in vain.

In Him,