Wednesday, January 11, 2017

New Year ... New Steps

Image result for images of setting goals
As with any New Year brings new beginnings.  It is a time for each of us to make goals for things we want to accomplish in the new year.  I don't like to set New Year's Resolutions, but set goals instead.  With all that I have been through in 2016, there are things that I would like to change and to do differently in 2017.

Of course, one of the goals that I have set for this year is to get healthier.  With having Cancer last year, I want to be healthier.  I don't to worry about dieting or losing weight.  I just want to concentrate on getting myself healthier - better food choices, exercising, relaxing and taking my vitamins.   This is a tall order for this kind of list, but I am going to keep it simple.  I want to eat food that is healthy for me.  Food that will benefit my body.  I just need to do some type of exercise - walking is the easiest.   Relaxing might be hard, but it is something that I am going to have to do for myself.  My family will just have to get use to it.  haha 

Now taking my vitamins was always a hard one for me.  It seems to be the easiest on my list but I could never remember to take them.   I use to take a brand name for years and I still like this brand but I was taking more than 20 different products.  I could never remember what I had taken and if I had taken anything.  I was going crazy trying to remember to simply take my vitamins.   I have found the best products/company for me.  It is so simple.  As simple as 1 - 2 - 3.

I have been Thriving for 3 weeks now and I can see a change.  It has given me energy that I haven't been having, but I also have to remember that I will be awhile before I am 100%.  In the meantime, I don't have to feel horrible either.  So, I thought I would give Thrive a chance.  What did I have to lose?  It really is easy as 1-2-3.  First thing in the morning, when your feet hit the floor you take your vitamins, not 20 but 2.  Then within in 30 minutes you drink a shake and put on a patch that stays on for 24 hrs.  You are DONE!!  Nothing else.  It has given me energy and it is helping with my appetite.  I am thankful to cousin for posting on facebook that she was Thriving and how well she was doing.

Some other goals I have set in next post .....

Saturday, December 31, 2016

By 2016 ... Hello 2017

As we leave 2016 behind and welcome 2017 it is a good time to reflect on what we have been through in this past year.  I love to take time to see what all I have been through and the changes that have occurred.  Do you do the same thing? 

This has been not a very good year for me and my health.  I haven't felt my best all year.  I knew something was wrong but didn't know what was going on.  I was dealing with some awesome fatigue, weight gain and swelling.  I am not sure how many times I had been to the doctor and he kept saying that nothing was wrong.  He did all kinds of blood work but nothing showed up.  My thyroid numbers were the best they had been in years, if ever.  However, I was feeling horrible.  Then in August I had surgery and found out I had cancer.  I went through radiation and ending the year recovering.  

I personally haven't lost anyone this year, but I know several people that have lost a loved one.  There is a family that lost their daughter in a car crash as she was headed  back to college.  And other families that have lost a loved one in 2016.  I pray for these families - that God will give them comfort and strength.  

In my daily devotion reading this morning, it was really good as I reflect on this year.  It was spot on.  I am currently reading "A Woman's Journey to the Heart of God" by Cynthia Heald.  It is so good.  Recommend it for anyone!!  Today's chapter was called, "Willingness to Endure."  I wish I could tell you every word from it, but I will share some high lights.  

Jeremiah chose endurance because he knew the destination was worth it.  Endurance is that capacity to stay under the load, to remain in the circumstances, without fleeing or seeking the easy way out.  Perseverance is a quality we must exercise on a daily basis. 
God had applied pressure in Paul's life to keep him from being prideful, but along with the affliction God supplied Paul with the grace to endure.  "My grace is enough; it's all you need.  My strength comes into its own in your weakness." We need to let things happen.  Stop focusing on the handicap and begin appreciating the gift.  When God places us in a difficult situation and declines to eliminate the pressure, it is comforting to remember that His grace enables us to keep going when the road is rough.  For when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow.  So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be strong in character and ready for anything.  
I endure because I get up each day to walk with God.  I endure because I love God and I want my life to please Him.  I know that every trial in which I stand firm will add to my maturity.  I know that it will deepen my ability to accept and handle whatever I encounter in life.  His Word sustains me; He stand beside me; His grace is sufficient; He gives perseverance and encouragement.  I want the whole tour; I don't want to miss out on anything the Lord wants to see or do.  It is the only journey in which we do not have to endure alone.  
When through fiery trials they pathway shall lie, My grace, all sufficient, shall be they supply;  The flame shall not hurt thee; I only design Thy dross to consume and they gold to refine.  
In reading this chapter this morning, I realized that I am stronger than I thought.  I have endured this year and I have come out stronger on the other side.  I know that God did not leave me alone.  He was with me each step of the way.  I know that through His grace I can handle anything that comes my way.  I want people to see God through me and my trials.

So if you are going through a trial or some tough times, please know that God is working in you.  He will NOT leave you alone.  Don't give up!!!  Just keep clinging to God and His promises.

I am not sure what 2017 has in store for me or my family.  I pray that whatever it may be that God will give me His grace to get me through it.  I love this journey that I am on and I don't want to miss one thing God has in store for me.


Thursday, December 15, 2016

It continues .....

I went through a bunch of emotions with finding out I had cancer yet again and of course a million questions.  The one that kept coming to mind was, "Why, me?"  then ... "Why, again?"  Did this have anything to do with having thyroid cancer just 15 yrs ago?  What did this mean for me?  Man many questions.  What kind of treatment did this type of cancer mean?

My ENT was great and answered so many of my questions.  He said this type of cancer can't be treated with chemo (I am so thankful for that) and it usually gets treated with radiation.  He said that he wasn't sure if I truly needed it or not.  They did get all the nodule when he did the surgery, so if he did do radiation it would be for precaution measures.

So, my ENT sent me to an Oncologist to get his opinion.  After visiting with Oncologist he felt like it would be in my best interest to get the radiation - every day (except for weekends) for six weeks.  Oh joy!!  I had no idea what  I was in store for with the treatments.  I didn't know what to expect.  I was really hoping that I would have gotten started on the treatments right away, but my insurance had another idea.  For some reason there was an issue - really weird - and they said it had never happened before, to anyone.  It took a couple of weeks to get it all straightened out, but they finally did.

I am not going to lie, the thought of radiation, scared me to death.  The unknown is always scary .. and this one wasn't any different.  For my first visit they had to make a mold/cast that I would wear each time.  It covered my whole face down past my shoulders.  They fasten it down to the table each time.  It kept me from moving.  My very first treatment I had such anxiety before I got there and then before they fasten me to the table.  I prayed and prayed, more than I ever have before.  I prayed for peace and calmness to get through the treatment.  Thank God that he heard my prayer and answered.  There was a calmness that came over me that only could come from God.  This just didn't happen with the one treatment it was with each and every treatment.  A calmness that can only come from God.

The first couple of weeks of treatments went by pretty easily.  No complications or problems.  Then the 3rd & 4th week hit along with all the side effects that go along with radiation and where mine was located came it's own set of side effects.  I am still not sure which one was the worse, the fatigue, sore throat, bad taste in my mouth or the blisters inside my mouth.  None of them was fun.  I had to eat a lot of soft foods and drink a lot of water and/or tea.  Drinking hot (not too hot) tea with lots of honey did help coat my throat.  I had to make sure that I was eating enough to keep up my strength and to not lose a bunch of weight.  So, I allowed myself to eat whatever I wanted without worrying if it was on my diet or not.

My journey will continue ....

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Another journey

I have been meaning to post for a couple of months about the new journey that I have been on.  I just haven't had time or really felt like it.

A year ago, I found a knot on my neck, just below my right ear & chin.  I didn't think anything about it, but asked my doctor the next time I went to see him.  He put my on an antibiotic because he thought it was an infection.  It didn't work.  I actually forgot about it for the next few months.  This summer I remembered to ask the doctor about it again, mostly because it was starting to hurt.  He referred me to an Ears, Nose & Throat (ENT) doctor.  Of course, I requested the doctor that had removed my thyroid in 2001.

The ENT doctor sent me for a MRI.  The MRI showed that there was a small mass in the nodule that was in my neck.  The doctor told me I had two choices:  one, I could have it removed and second, I could do a biopsy and see what it shows.  Well, like my thyroid, there wasn't a choice.  It was surgery.  I didn't want to take any chances.  I chose the same thing with my thyroid and when they removed it it came back cancer.  I was thankful then that I had chose surgery over biopsy.   So, here again, there wasn't a chose for me.  I scheduled surgery to have the nodule removed.

The surgery went well and recovery only took two weeks.  They sent the nodule off, like they always do, and it came back cancer.  Again?  I made it through this once but why I am going through this again?  I just didn't know what to expect or what this meant.  Did I have to have treatment and if I did, what kind?  My life as I knew it was changing ....

Sunday, August 9, 2015

"My Best Yes"

I have just finished reading the most amazing book - "The Best Yes" by Lysa TerKeurst.  It really hit home with me.  The biggest thing for me was learning how to chase your choices.   In the past I haven't been thinking about where my decisions on each choice will lead me. 

One of my biggest area that I need this help in is with food.  I am not overweight because I ate like I was suppose to.  I know that I don't have a Thyroid and that will make my weight issues harder but it isn't the total problem. My lack of making "The Best Yes" to each food decision is where the problem lies.  Have I always thought about each food choice before I eat?  Have I chased the decision to where it will lead me down the road?  NO

That is changing today .... no more just putting something in my mouth with me asking myself, "Is this my Best yes?"  or "Will this food get me to my goal" 

Another area is with my finances.  I have not always made the right choices.  I can look back over the past many years to can see clearly that I did not make The Best Yes decisions.  If I would have done better with them years ago we wouldn't had to file for bankruptcy all those years ago.  Also, we would not be in debt now.  I am working on getting us out, again, but what if I had the right choices to begin with? 

There is no sense in punishing ourselves for choices that are in the past.  We can only learn from them and gain wisdom.  That is what I am going to focus on .... growing wisdom. 

I know too that I can NOT do this on my own.  Look where it got me - overweight and in debt.  I need the Lord' help in making sure that I am making "The Best Yes" decisions.  That I am chasing the decision before I make them.  I want to live so that other people can see Christ through me and I haven't been living this way.  I have been overwhelmed and stressed - all because I haven't been living my best. 

This all changes today ....  I am excited about "My Best Yes" and what the Lord has in store for me. Thank you Lord for bringing this book to me and for bringing to my attention the areas of my life that I need to change. 

Monday, August 3, 2015

Always growing

I think we can never get too old to stop growing.  I know that I always strive to keep learning and striving to be better than I was yesterday.  That is one reason that I love to read and I love to read books on spiritual growth.

I finished my book "Life Interrupted" by Priscilla Shirer - awesome and amazing book.  It is about Jonah and his life in the belly of the whale.  I have always loved this story about Jonah but I have never really dug into the story.  This book does that and it is amazing look into this story.  It is a great read ....  Priscilla is a great writer.  I highly recommend this book. 
The book is about life's interruptions - good or bad.  We all have them.  They're aggravating and sometimes infuriating.  But how we handle interruptions actually tells us more about ourselves.  We, like Jonah, tend to run from interruptions.  When major pains and minor problems cause a hiccup in our carefully calculated plans and goals we head in the opposite direction. 

I wish I could put everything I learned about after reading this book, but I would be writing a new book.  Add it to your must read list ....

Now .. onto my next book.  I didn't think I could top the book I just read but I have done just that ...  "The Best Yes" by Lysa Terkeurst.  Just started it last night but I can't seem to put it down.  OMG!!  Powerful book!! 

"Are you living with the stress of an overwhelmed schedule and aching with the sadness of an underwhelmed soul?"

The first thing that hits me and it is in big letter so I don't miss it.  We must not confuse the command to love with the disease to please.  OMG - this is so me!!  I am always doing this ... Are you?    

If we are to be Best Yes Girls, we have to long for unbroken companionship with God.  The one who obeys God's instruction for today will develop a keen awareness of His direction for tomorrow.  

I am going to be sharing some of the things I am learning as I read through this book.  I am also going to do the Bible Study that goes with it.  I will do it after I get finished reading the book.  I hope in my sharing what I learn and my stories ... I can help someone else.   

Monday, July 6, 2015

July 6

Another holiday has come and gone.  I like the 4th of July is such a fun holiday.  I like celebrating the birth of America.  With all the wonderful cook out food - fireworks and of course spending time with family.  This was a rainy year but we still made the most of the day. 

With being on a low carb diet it can be hard to eat how you should at cook-outs, especially if you go to someone else house.  I am learning that it doesn't have to be that hard.  If you are too shy to ask what they are having to eat or if you can bring something; then you just have to do the best you can.  Eat a burger and/or hotdog without the bun.  I have gotten to where I just take me a small bowl with a salad in it.  I just go ahead and prepare it with the dressing on the side.  I don't make a big deal about eating it.  I just get a plate and get a burger and/or hotdog and then have my salad.  I have actually gotten to taking me a salad just about anywhere I go, this way I am sure I always have something to eat. 

Eating Low Carb can be challenging at times but it doesn't have to be.  It has it's moments when it can be hard, but if you slip then you just pick yourself back up and get back on plan.   After awhile it does get easier, especially when you put your mind to doing this for life.  It just isn't a fad diet ... it is for life. 

In my lifestyle of eating low carb I have decided to start sharing some of my recipes.  I have been searching all over for different ones.  I am especially going to post the ones that I love the most ... I hope that you enjoy them as much as I do.  I am not an expert on Low Carb eating but I finding my way.   I hope that while finding my way I can help someone else find their way. 

Here's to finding out way through Low Carb eating .... as a way of life.