Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Tailspin

     I think the 1 thing I detest most about cancer is how in just 1 tiny little second it can, time & time again, throw your whole entire life into a tailspin. Unfortunately, this is where I find myself once more: in the midst of a cancer tailspin. 
     On Monday afternoon I walked into the Cancer Center for scheduled blood-work & to have a catch-up with my incredible oncologist, Dr. K. The sun was shining, I had lost 3 lbs, & my favorite CNA pulled my chart which meant girl-talk during blood drawls!!! We talked about her handsome little man who, unbelievably, is already 2, I boasted about reaching my 22-month remission mark, & we quickly hugged goodbye before Chad & I were taken back to our exam room.  Dr. K, who is by far the most incredible oncologist I could ever ask for (making the transfer after my recurrence was one of the best decisions I ever made) entered the room with a smile, as she always does, & then made my day by telling me I always have the cutest style when she sees me (shout-out to my F21 bowler hat!). We waited for about an hour hoping that my CEA, or tumor-marker, would come back from the lab. When it didn't, we set-up a game-plan to have my next CT in June (which would be 6 months from my last in December), hugged, & said our goodbyes. I knew someone would be calling with my CEA count so it was no surprise when I saw "Cancer Center" on my celly ID while shopping around Target with Chad. The information that came next literally knocked the breath out of me. My tumor-marker, which measures a specialized protein in Colorectal patients to show signs of possible disease, had been steady at 0.5 since June 2012, however on Monday, it had jumped to 2.3. 
     My heart sank & my hands began to tremble so much that Chad took the phone to hold it still. Because it was such a sudden, substantial jump, Dr. K ordered my CT scan to be turned into a PET of my entire body & also to have it moved from June to sometime within the next few weeks. I'm trying my damnedest to think positive but I'm also preparing myself for a potential round #3. The strange thing is when I had my recurrence in 2011, I knew it was coming. I had spine & tailbone pain for weeks prior to my scan; I just didn't feel quite "right". However, as of now, I don't feel like anything is wrong. I feel...dare I say healthy? 
     Regardless of what the outcome of my upcoming PET scan may show, it is what it is. I've beaten cancer twice & I know I can do it again if need be. If it's nothing, well...I guess that's life reminding, once again, anything & everything can change in a matter of seconds...or in my case, in a matter of a tailspin.
I'll keep you updated. 
love&lyrics,
- LISA -

...just because..

Thursday, April 3, 2014

"Beauty Despite Cancer"

I'm so very, very excited to be able to share some super-rad news with all of you! I am now officially part of the "Beauty Despite Cancer" blogging team. 
I'm so honored to have the opportunity to not only share my story but also to learn from all the other incredible women who contribute to the BDC team.
Whatcha waitin' for? Check it out! :)

"Beauty Despite Cancer: Home"

My first post:
"Superman's Cape"
Photo credit to "Beauty Despite Cancer"


I, of course, will continue to blog on GDHC which will always be my home sweet home. <3

See you soon.
love&lyrics,
-LISA-

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Let's MARCH together!


March is OFFICIALLY "Colorectal Awareness Month" so this particular time is when I work my booty off just a little bit more than usual to get the word out & about. 

Upcoming FYI's:

*Wednesday March 05, 2014 - National "Colorectal Survivor's" Day
*Friday March 07, 2014 - National "Dress in Blue" Day 

See you soon.
-LISA- 


I HAVE to represent the CRC community & Sinful Colors #105 "Midnight Blue" polish does the job.



Wednesday, February 26, 2014

#WisdomWednesday

I'm fairly new to the world of hashtags so, occasionally, I get a little mixed-up with which trend coincides with which day; however "wisdom wednesdays" & "throwback thursdays" are actually super-fun for me. So, here is this week's #ww, created by your's truly. :)


John Diamond's quote is BY FAR my favorite cancer-esque quote I've ever come across & it actually became part of my day-to-day life during my battle. Everyday I would look into the mirror, look myself in the eyes, & literally utter the phrase "cancer is a word, not a sentence" because my diagnosis nor my prognosis was a sentence; I wasn't going to let it be. 

Keep those heads held high & fight the good fight. 
- LISA -

Friday, February 21, 2014

29, 1 Last Time

     I seriously can't believe how quickly 2014 is flying by.  Valentine's Day has come & gone & tomorrow I, officially, turn the BIG "3-0"! I'm actually really excited & so ready to leave my 20's behind. It's been a hectic decade but I'm here; I'm healthy, I'm happy, & I'm loved - I really couldn't ask for much more. I don't want to say anything to jinx this unusual (& very-much appreciated) wave of calm & normalcy that has been kindly lurking around my family BUT...things have been going really well for all of us. 

Chad & I just shared our 11th Valentine's Day together which still seems surreal to me. In 1 sense, it really does feel like yesterday he was the "gorgeous lost-control guy" at work with the most beautiful blue-eyes that made my ability to say a simple "hi" without stuttering impossible. Then, in another sense - it feels like we've been connected our entire lives. Yes, things have most-definitely not been the easiest for us; we've been tested (& tested & then, tested again) but somehow, we've managed to find our way back to the core of who we are: 2 people who fell-in-love & decided to take on the world together & what a journey it has been thus far. Where will it go next? Who's to say...but I do know who's hand I will be holding throughout it all.
A little collection of our Valentine's throughout the years.
I was able to spend some much-needed girl-time with my bff''s, Ashley & Natalie (who also happened to be my & Chad's matchmakers 10-years-ago) & it reminded me just how lucky I am to have them in my life. We've seen each other go through so many different stages of life & no matter what the circumstances might have been - good or bad, we were & continue to be there for each other. We've watched each other fall-in-love & get married. I watched them become moms & they watched me beat cancer. These girls are what true friendship is all about - unconditional love, support, & making each other laugh so hard it makes your stomach hurt. <3

Natalie, me, Ashley, & the little ones.

BFF birthday cake. YUM!
In other news, I've started outlining & writing my 1st fiction-based novel entitled "Pieces of Me" (absolutely no relation to my prior posts with the same title) & when I've finished with 4 or 5 chapters, I plan to send-out some "feelers" to publishers to see what happens. I'm also SUPER excited to share something else with you but I want to wait until it's "official" so hopefully I will be telling you about that very soon in a future post.

...finally...
Since I don't really have any juicy news for an exciting update, I thought it would be fun to share a hodgepodge of things that have recently made their way into my heart. Things that I love, things that make me smile, & things that I just think are pretty rad & thought you might enjoy. I hope you likey. Feel free to tell me about your latest love-affairs!
- tunes -
"Lovers" by Beech 
Beech is, without-a-doubt, my favorite newly-discovered band & there is no better introduction to their level of epic-ness than this song. 
"cause I was just a half until I found you..."<3

"Dream" by Priscilla Ahn
 
I'm such a sucker for a solo acoustic-guitar driven song & raw, honest lyrics, so when those 2 are put together, I'm all in. "Dream" is such a light, beautiful song supported by spot-on vocals...and the cherry on top? Priscilla brings in the harmonica at the perfect time to put that little extra ache in your heart. 

"Stay" (cover) by 30 Seconds To Mars
I looooove me a good cover & I probably would have missed this one had my hubby not been a fan of 3STM for years. Jared Leto SANGS (yes sAngs) his cancer-free-ass off on this Rihanna-cover. I know "on paper" it doesn't seem like a good fit but 1 listen & I guarantee you this version will be the only version of "stay" getting action on your playlist. 

- this & that -
Black & Gold
I don't know what it is but I have been having quite the love affair with all that is black & gold lately. I love the contrast between the 2 colors especially with jewelry & this Charlotte Russe chain-strapped purse that I got on SALE for $10!

Midi-Rings
I was hesitant when midi-rings (knucklerings) first started becoming "trendy" a while ago. Then, one day, I was breaking-down old jewelry for parts (other people do that, right?) & came across a pair of earrings that were 3 stacked rings that got smaller with each level. I initially thought I would just use the largest ring for my index-finger but decided to experiment with the smaller rings too & wallah...my love for midi-rings was born!  And yes, I'm also on a black nail-polish binder; after the past 3ish months of stress they took alot of abuse so I'm back to the "growing-out" stage.

...Oh-la-lilac...
I'm so in-love with this Maybelline Color Whispers in "Oh-la-lilac". It's so smooth, hydrating, and pigmented! The color is stunning & it's build-able so it's perfect to wear alone or to put on top of another lipstick. 

Books

The Lauren Conrad Beauty Book was published in 2012 & is a collection of tips & tricks "LC" has learned mostly from her time in reality tv on MTV's Laguna Beach & The Hill's.  It covers topics from proper skin care & hair care, recipes for DIY treatments, make-up tips, common mistakes, in-depth demonstrations, Q&A's, & everything-in-between. I'm only about a quarter of the way through but it really is pretty informative & is a fun read for anyone who's in beauty, make-up, skincare, & all that jazz.


A really fun book Chad recently got me is the "Wreck This Journal". It's insane! It's designed to well...wreck. It's purely for fun & to take you out of your norm by doing different task on different pages. My niece, Brea, & I had some fun on 1 of her many snow-days. We completed the "crack the spine" page (she was pretty excited to walk & jump all-over-it), & the "smush page" with all of our different lipstick colors that we applied & kissed. Other tasks include decorating a page with coffee spills, pressing leaves & flowers you collect from outside, writing one word (of your choice) over & over to cover an entire page, to collect & put all fruit stickers on 1 page, to add your own page numbers in any order on every page, & so on. It's unlike anything I've ever seen (or done) & as ridiculous as it sounds it's pretty damn entertaining. 

What new loves have you discovered lately?
Talk to you soon.

- LISA -




Sunday, February 16, 2014

What the....?!

GDHC was feeling a bit self-conscious, so we're have a make-over day!
;)
See you soon!
-LISA-

Friday, February 14, 2014

2.14.14

Happy Valentine's Day!

I thought one of my all-time favorite quotes was a perfect fit for today:
- William Shakespeare

I hope that wherever you may be your heart was able to feel a beat of warmth today. 
Please know that allowing my story into your life has opened my heart to all of you. 
I'm so thankful everyday for every single person who stops by. 
You truly inspire me.  

PS - New post SOON.

- LISA -