10.11.17

As I sit here and type this, Doris Day’s Que Sera, Sera is replaying in my head over and over. I distinctly remember my mom singing that song to me (as I do for Nora & Peter) when I was a little girl. It’s always stuck with me and I feel like it’s been my anthem for life over the past few years.

Which brings me to the point of this post. It’s hard to believe that 10.11.12 was FIVE years ago. Que sera, sera. What will be, will be.

Thankfully, I’m happy to report that my latest test results indicate that I’m still NED (no evidence of disease). Wahoo! Happy 5-year cancerversary to me!

As most of you know, making it 5 years without a recurrence or distant metastasis for a triple negative-er is a really big deal. At this point (assuming the scientific literature out there is still accurate) my rate of recurrence drops significantly. Metastasis could still rear it’s ugly head one day, but I’ve learned to embrace the Que, Sera, Sera part of life!

Does this mean that I’ll rest on my laurels and go back to “normal” life? No my friends, there is no such thing as “normal” life anymore – just the new normal – which includes exercise (ugh.), self-care (read: switching to non-toxic make-up, personal care products, laundry detergent, household cleaning items, and trying to eat “clean” while balancing ALL of that against just living my life and enjoying myself!) and continued check ups with Garrett every 3 to 4 months.

But seriously, as shitty as things have been, they’ve been equally as amazing. I wouldn’t trade a thing about the past 5 years because I’ve grown so much as a person. Of course, I wouldn’t wish cancer on anybody, but for me, it was (and is) a profound experience. I’ve met so many beautiful souls along the way. Without my community, I wouldn’t be where I am today. So I thank all of you who have been there for me and my family — holding space for us and holding us in your hearts and prayers when we needed it most. I hope to return the favor as many times over as I can.

For now though, I’ll happily continue cruisin’ along in this lane. It’s not a bad lane to be in…

xoxo,
Andrea

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Photo Credit: Piece of Heart Photography

 

Trip Down Memory Lane

Update: We’re still chugging’ along (knock wood). My next ultrasound is on the 30th. Fingers crossed everything remains stable until then.

As BBS’s impending birth becomes more real to me, I can’t help but think back to when Nora was born. So much love. Love like I’ve never felt before.

I, like all second time parents to be, am worried I couldn’t possibly love another tiny human as much as I love Nora. But, after what BBS and I have been through, my love for him is already immense and it’ll just keep growing from here. I can’t wait to meet him (well, you know what I mean – I can’t wait for him to be done cooking and then meet him!).  I’ve been so heads down and focused on the immediate task at hand, that I lost sight of the joy in carrying and growing another human life. Don’t get me wrong though, I only allow myself to enjoy it in measured doses for fear of jinxing everything. Some of the fun things I’ve done recently are ordering decor for BBS’s nursery and personalized thank you cards for him. It’s been really nice to feel happy instead of scared and worried.

In the meantime, I never published Nora’s entire newborn photo shoot. There are lots of duds in there for sure – but I don’t even care anymore – I’m overwhelmed by love (and pregnancy hormones!) and want the world to see them all.  Hope you enjoy (esp the few that include Maisey — she’s such a character)…

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(Photo credit goes to Kim Lind Photography)

 

 

6.14.2016 – Seriously?

When life keeps giving you lemons, I’m here to tell you, you WILL get sick of making lemonade.

Two weeks ago I went to see my OB because I’d been spotting for about 24 hours. I was 22 weeks and 3 days pregnant. She did an exam and told me that she could feel my membranes. She said I have an incompetent cervix and I needed to immediately go to the hospital where I’d be admitted for at least a couple of days.

She told me that she was going to call a high risk surgeon to meet me and she was hoping he’d be able to place a “rescue”cerclage in my cervix. There wasn’t a whole lot of certainty in her voice though. She was really unsure whether anything could be done. She was very factual and calm, but I could tell baby boy and I were in deep shit.

So I hopped a cab (faster than uber or an ambulance) over to CPMC California. The nurses in triage were expecting me (I started having major PTSD flashbacks of the adria leak and my trip to the ER for the antidote….)

Long story short, I was having emergency surgery within an hour and a half. I was 3cm dilated and the surgeon could see baby boy’s feet coming out through the membranes (which were bulging out of my cervix).  Thank heavens the doctor was able to get the bag back into my cervix without rupturing it and there was enough cervix left to work with to insert a cerclage.

I’m not going to lie to any of you. The outlook those first 72 hours was really, really grim, but my body pulled through, and, far as anyone can tell, the baby is none the wiser (though he did get a good healthy dose of narco post-op and a 4-day-round-the-clock-dose of antibiotics via IV to my body).

So now I’m on indefinite bed rest at the hospital. Since I was asymptomatic when all of this started (save a little spotting) my doctors are hesitant to breathe a sigh of relief. We’re forced to take everything day by day and pray for the best.

It’s been 14 days since I arrived here. It’s been incredibly hard not to see Nora, Maisey and Paul all the time. It’s been a major test of character to have to surrender 100% control of everything in my life. From caring for my child, to my own body. I have to be strong every day and remember that I’m a mere vessel. Here to incubate the newest member of our family. It’s not an easy job at all. I was in a lot of physical pain early on. Now I’m in a lot of emotional pain. But when I focus on one day at a time, that helps.

This past Saturday I hit 24 weeks in my pregnancy, which is a huge milestone. Should baby boy arrive at this point, there are life saving measures that can be taken. That was not the case when I first arrived at 22 weeks.

So we are grateful for every small victory and we’ll keep pushing on. There are so many more details to the story, but the above is the gist. We’d appreciate it if you could keep us all in your prayers and hold space for us. We’ve got a long, long road ahead and hope that it’s drama free.

xoxo,

Andrea

 

I’m 11 Months Old Today!

I can’t believe I’m 11 months old today! Mom tried to take my picture with the bear and age block on the rocking chair just as she’s done in past months, but I had other ideas. Check out the video below, haha!

I just spent a week on the east coast at my uncle Chuck’s house with all of my mom’s family for Thanksgiving. We had a blast. I got to hang out with all of my cousins and play the entire time! Mom posted a ton of pictures below for you to see.

I’m officially walking more than I crawl. My mom says I’m a force to be reckoned with. I have some serious ants in my pants and I love keeping her on her toes throughout the day. I’m super curious and adventurous — which means I’m often getting into things that mom says are “no-no’s”!

I babble and sing like it’s my job. I can say “dada”, “mama”, “mai-mai”, “E-I-E-I-O”, “Hi” and I can growl like a pirate “arrggh”.  I clap along to “If you’re happy and you know it” and I wave my arms like a crazy person for “Where is thumpkin?”

While I’ve made a lot of progress on the moving and communication fronts, I still have NO teeth! lol And I’m still a picky eater who wants everything pureed to a pulp. What can I say, I like what I like!

I met Santa Claus at the mall and helped mom and dad put up our Christmas Tree. It’s been an action-packed month! I wonder what excitement my 11th month will hold………

 

 

 

A Picture’s Worth a Thousand Words

Below are stills from our incredible vacation. I wish we were still in Kauai — it’s the most magical place on this earth (in my opinion). Can’t wait until we return…

Dead Head

Went deep with the Grateful Dead at Nora’s 1pm feed.

It can’t always be Joshua Bell up in our house. Gotta teach this girl ALL the classics.

It reminded me of running around Eagle Heights with Nicole and Sarah. I regaled Nora with stories of mommy’s childhood hijinx!

Jerry’s voice lulled her into an almost comatosed state — she just pulled and pulled on her bottle until she was milk drunk. I was a wee bit concerned the feed might end in projectile vomiting. Ya know — much like a Dead concert — it can go either way! Thankfully she was super mellow and just jammed to the music on her play mat.

She doesn’t come with an instruction booklet, so I just do what feels right. Today, this felt right and, miraculously, it worked. She’s having a good day!

#parenthood

   

 

Precious Moments

Holding hands and locking eyes. I could do this forever…

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