Saturday, December 22, 2018


With only a few days until Christmas I am feeling a mixture of happiness and excitement along with  a bit of of nervousness. I have written in the past about Christmas not being my favourite holiday. However my first Christmas with breast cancer in 2012 was one of the best. Two families got together in our home in Vancouver and for several days there were up to 13 people celebrating with good food, wine and company. Although my taste buds made everything taste like cardboard, including good wine, it was the companionship that made that holiday so much fun.

This year our kids and their partners along with a nine-year-old are now gathering. Christmas Eve we head for Mount Washington on Vancouver Island for four nights in a spacious townhouse. Everyone is pitching in for meals and all that goes along with that. My main job will be relaxing while trying not to supervise too often. There has been enough snow in the past 10 days for all snow sports. I hope to snowshoe at least once or twice and thankfully the Nordic area is right next to our townhouse and downhill is ski in ski out.

Just two days ago I finished my third IV chemo on my new regime. It is called Paclitaxel, one of the same drugs I had back in 2012/13. This time it is a reduced dosage given every week with a week off. Luckily I get Christmas week off. So far I am feeling good for the most part. I do need to rest and take myself off to quiet spaces when I feel overwhelmed.

The last chemo which was oral caused me hand/foot syndrome which made it painful to walk. One of the trade-offs this time is that I will lose my hair and I may still have some neuropathy in my feet and hands but for now I am okay. I am also hopeful that this chemo may push back the tumour that is wrapped around the neurovascular bundle of the right brachial plexus. I still have intense pain but it is managed.

My next post will be in 2019, 1 1/2 years into metatastic  breast cancer. There have been some rough times in the last while but I feel as though I am entering an upward phase with much hope. My family and friends continue to support me even when I am sad or angry.

I wish everyone a wonderful holiday season no matter where they are or who they are with.

Love Marian

This is my latest hairstyle. In 2012 Mary shaved my hair into a mohawk for fun but it only lasted an hour or so. This time I decided to have more fun with it and until it starts to fall out I will sport this mohawk, colours and all.

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