The past weekend was great! For us in Canada, it was a long weekend. Yes, I was still feeling the chemo effects, but I was feeling good enough to go on a small walks here and there.

When you have a child, you can’t just stay at home all the time. Our son would just be a mess. So we went for short walks at places we never been or that me don’t go as often.

We went to a park that had bunnies and goats. He could experience other animals than a cat and a dog. I can’t wait for things to be normal again so we could go to the zoo. I feel with Covid that we are missing out on many sensory development.

We were able to buy a pool and he had fun splashing his daddy.

We also went to our community playground and played on the slide and swing. He had a blast and that what matter. Seeing my son smile is filling my heart and is everything to me.

Those little walks were no longer than 1 hour and a half at the most and I felt tired afterwards. Maybe I am pushing myself too hard, but in my head, not knowing how much time I have left, makes me want to spend more time with my family. The only problem… I get exhausted for things l could do for hours before. A slow walk, will make me tired, but it is all worth it.

Seeing my son and husband smile and be happy makes my world, but spending qualify time with them made me a little emotional. I didn’t want this weekend to be over. All good things has an end they say. We had to go back to the reality and my reality isn’t the greatest.

On a good day, I don’t believe that I am sick. I wonder if they made the wrong diagnosis. It feels like a nightmare and you want to pinch yourself to see if it’s real.

But on most days, I have a lingering pain that reminds me that I am not imagining things and that I do have cancer. I ask myself why this is happening to me? Why do I deserve this? What could I have done differently? These questions don’t have answers, but they haunt me everyday.

The fear of the unknown is real. Not knowing if I’ll ever be cancer free one day, not knowing how long I have, not knowing if I will see my son grow up.

The unknown is scary. I just want to know that everything will be alright… That I will get to have many more of those great weekend with my family. Even that, I can’t have an answer for…

Cycle 2 has begun…

So my hair has started to fall. I feel naked. I feel like a little chick with no feathers. I look at myself in the mirror and and I hate what I see. This will take a while to get used to. Many people mentioned that I look good bald, but it’s hard for me to believe it. It’s like a lost part of me. Thank goodness that hats and wigs exist.

The worst part was when I washed my hair. They came off in chunks didn’t mind shows it as it looked so bad after those chunks fell off.

It’s was my second cycle of chemotherapy this week and I was dreading it. On my way to the hospital, I wanted to cry. I knew what the next weeks will be like: nausea, drowsiness, headaches, back and chest pain, let’s just say crappy. I can’t escape from it. I have to do it. I have to fight!

This week was a little bit different than last time. The mood in the chemo room was different.

A big guy with tattoos entered the room for his first chemo treatment. When the nurse explained to him how it works, he mentioned that he can’t swallow pills. He was scared of it. He said that he took meds with bacon and he would chew the pills. He was obsessed with bacon. He even offered some to the nurse. This was so funny. I assume that’s how he was processing and expressing his stress.

The aftermath of my chemo treatment was a bit easier this week. The nausea on the second day wasn’t as intense than last time. I guess it’s because I knew how to manage my medications better. I slept pretty much from Monday to Thursday. I was awake a few hours at the end of each day to spend with my little guy when he came back from daycare.

I hate the ween after chemo. I feel like I am useless, but there’s nothing I can do about it. I have to get better.

I am not shy to say that most of my life I was a loner. I don’t have close friends. I often felt alone. A lot of things happened in my childhood that probably contributed to this, but I can’t go back in time and change it.

Being diagnosed with cancer brings you to review your life. You wonder what you did wrong, what you could have done better. It makes you regret not keeping in touch with people that you crossed path at some point in your life.

What I will say next, I kept to myself my whole life.

I am not good with keeping connection with people. Maybe it’s all because of my past and I think it all started back in high school.

I lost my best friend when I was a teenager because I said the wrong thing: I will tell your parents. I remember it to this day. I was jealous and mad because I felt she was putting me to the side as she made new friends. I felt left out. I can’t remember what they were going to do for me to say “I will tell your parents” has it’s a big blur, but it was the end of our friendship and the start of many miserable high school years.

I was pretty much alone at that point. They told the whole school. They laughed at me. I was bullied.

For many years I missed my best friend. I wish I can find her today to apologize.

I made new friends, but they also ended up stabbing me in the back. I was probably too nice with everyone, I was a people pleaser and couldn’t handle confrontation. This lasted until graduation. My friendships always were my boyfriend.

My boyfriends, now my husband where my whole world. That was all that mattered.

I got used to that and today, we are grown ups and I have difficulties to make friends. We all have our lives, everyone has their friends. Who has time for a new friend in their busy life.

Getting sick made the realize that sometime you don’t see the whole picture. You think you are alone and don’t matter, but people are rooting for you.

I am overwhelmed by the amount of people that are there for me. My workplace is there, some past coworkers, my family, even people I only know from online. I am grateful for all that.

I just wish I wasn’t so awkward with people and was able to easily connect. I am scared of rejection.

With COVID, you try to limit your exposure as much as possible. Who would have thought a side rib pain would turn someone’s life upside down. Well…it did for me.

I have been dealing with some pain on my side rib cage for a while and recently I have noticed a little lump. First, I didn’t think a lot of it, but since the pain wouldn’t go away and we wanted to make sure my body was able to cope for another pregnancy, I went to see the doctor and he ordered an x-ray. They saw that lump in question, but they saw something else in my lung too.

The doctor told me not to worry, that this could be just a glitch in the X-ray, but he ordered a CT scan just to be prudent.

A week later, still no CT scan appointment. Although my doctor told me not to worry, something was telling me something was wrong…

March 5th, 2021

The whole week was nerve racking. I had some burning pain in my chest area, which I had before, but since I knew there was a possibility there was something else, I was worried and went to the emergency.

My vitals and blood work were all fine. The doctor on duty saw I was scared. He pushed to have that CT scan done. The next day, I got the call to go get that test done. A few hours later… I received the bad news. They told me I had lung cancer.

It’s like the sky fell over my head, I huge pile of bricks. At that moment, my life turned upside-down…

March 23, 2021

I went for another CT scan. The thoracic surgeon told me that the first scan was only a screening CT scan. That mean, they gave me a diagnosis too quick. That made me feel a bit hopeful that they might have made a mistake.

March 24, 2021

I went for a biopsy to confirm what I really have. I was still hopeful that it wasn’t too serious and that I would be fine.

April 7, 2021

The wait was nerve racking. The day has come for the result…

It doesn’t look good was is word. Not what I wanted to hear.

They were partly wrong. My world crumbled into pieces once more… They were right about cancer, but not lung cancer.

I have Thymic carcinoma. The worst type of thymus cancer. It has spread to the lung pleura. That’s the only thing I learned that day. I don’t know what are my chances at this point. Two different oncologist are supposed to call me soon.

April 15, 2021

Today, I received the call from a radiation oncologist. At this point, radiation isn’t the first step. Chemotherapy is the way to go. Let just say that I am scared to death of what’s next. Is it curable? They can’t say. How much time do I have left? They don’t know. The only positive is that it is not bulky.

April 19, 2021

A friend of mine, who used to be my boss, contacted me. He and his wife did some research when they learned that I had cancer and was able to have a contact at the Princess Margaret hospital. This hospital is the 5th most rated hospital in the world for cancer research. I feel so grateful to have them as friends.

Things hay not been moving very fast so far. I am scared shitless and I need to have everything on my side right now. Cancer don’t take breaks.

April 23, 2021

I had my first appointment with my oncologist today. At first, it was supposed to be a consult, but ended up to be a pre-treatment appointment. The plan is to have chemotherapy every 3 weeks for a total of 6 with the possibility of surgery if the treatment respond well.

My cancer being rare, they don’t know how everything will go. This is scary. When you are sick, you want definite answers. They don’t have answers for me. The only thing for sure in all this is that I will be losing my hair.

April 26, 2021

Today was my first chemotherapy treatment. For some reason, I am relieved and also scared. Relieved because things are moving forward, but scared because I don’t know if it will work and I don’t know how I will react to the treatment. From today, I am moving into the unknown.

April 28, 2021

I received a call from the doctor at Princess Margaret hospital tonight. The treatment my oncologist is giving me is one of the best. For now it’s the way to go. He also referred me to a surgeon that possibly can operate, but he also mentioned that it’s only if the cancer shrinks enough. They don’t want me to have my hopes too high, but knowing that it is a possibility, it gives me something to move forward to. I just need to keep it realistic and know that it’s not a for sure, but a maybe.

My advise to you

Something I have learned and it will be my biggest advice to you all. If you have a minor pain or if you have anything that bothers you, don’t tough it out. I know with COVID you don’t want to go, but if in doubt, go get yourself checked. My cancer has been found by mistake. If I didn’t go, I could be in a worst situation. Unluckily, my cancer is advanced, I don’t know how long I’ve had it. Just be safer than sorry.

A Difficult Decision

Sending my son to daycare was a hard decision. We didn’t have another alternative and it wasn’t by choice. I had already extended my maternity leave and it came the time that I needed to go back to work. It is harder for me than it is for my husband. If I was given the choice and that we could have afforded it, I would have stayed home with him until things get better in this crazy world.

On the other hand, not sending him to daycare would have probably affected his development. Being in confinement is not good for us and him. He needs to interact with other people. So that was a major factor to take into consideration and that we couldn’t avoid.

Anxiety & OCD Creator

Every day I send him to daycare is terrifying for me. Covid gave me so much anxiety that someday, I feel I’m going to lose my mind. The sense of losing control of my son’s heath including ours is a major factor in my anxiety. Every day, I drop him off and I am worried that he will bring the virus home. I am sure that the daycare center is doing everything they can to avoid it, but we can’t control other kid’s caregivers. Are they careful like I do or are they the type of people who don’t care?

Already after a month, my son had to go through TWO covid-19 tests. The first time he went through it, I started to cry. I had to hold his head so he doesn’t move and he was fighting back. Thankfully, both tests were negative. To be honest, I don’t know how he would have caught it. We rarely go out except the grocery store when we don’t receive everything in the delivery or the pharmacy, I disinfect everything I bring back in and I wash my hands so many times that it is almost an obsession now… Every time someone comes too close to me, I worry. Just the other day, someone coughed in front of me at the store… now I worry… It has become OCD and anxiety.

Now, with all the tests we have to get done, is that safe? They say to limit your outings… well… every time we have to do a covid test, we risk contracting it? If you have kids, you know that they always have a runny nose, they always get a cold, especially the first year… This feels like it’s gonna be a long long year ahead of us…

Let’s hope 2021 goes by quickly and they find a solution for this stupid virus… Please let’s all do our part in keeping everyone safe. If you or someone living with you is sick, stay home.

You’re a year old! What?!?

Where did the time go? The time flew by so fast and it feels like you were born yesterday! Look at you now, you are so big!

This is a sad and happy time for mama. Sad because we won’t be able to spend as much time together and I will miss a lot of your milestones because mama needs to work. Mama wish she could stay with you every day. Happy because you make mama so proud. You have accomplished so much this year. From rolling over to crawling and walking on your feet. This happened so fast!

I feel lucky to have had the opportunity to spend more time with you to see you grow. Mama loves you so much! I never thought I would love someone as much! I cannot even describe it. You are my baby and will always be. I wish for years to come that you are happy, healthy and I hope we can keep a strong bond between you and me forever no matter what happens.

Before you came, I didn’t think I would be able to take care of you properly. Now, I don’t know either, BUT what I know is that I wouldn’t imagine my life without you and I will care for you the best I can until my breath stops. You are bringing joy to our lives and I don’t know what I would do without you. You are my miracle and the most precious person in my life.

Well, it happened. The news I didn’t want to hear.
Two cases of covid-19 have been reported in my son’s daycare.

I’m going crazy over here. I wish I could stay home with my child until things settle down, but money doesn’t grow on trees and bills won’t pay themselves. I already extended my maternity leave to stay with him longer. I have no choice.

The anxious feeling was starting to go away and then I learned this and it came back. I listen to Christmas music in the car, I start crying. I hold my son and hug him, I start crying. Is it even normal?

In regular circumstances, I would look forward to going back to work. Even a few weeks ago, I was getting excited. I bought myself a desk and computer chair so I can be ready to start in January. This pandemic screwed us big time.

This year was already difficult enough, now this. I hope the cases will disappear by the time my son starts.

I feel like I’m doing everything I can to keep him safe from this virus, but still failing to do so no matter what. I don’t feel in control and it drives me insane!

Photo by Kristina Tripkovic on Unsplash

Never in a million years would I have thought that having a child would change the way I react to different situations.

Before having my son, I thought I was a pretty chill person. Yes, I was overthinking a lot and was nervous about certain situations, but having anxiety that would make me cry in the shower or when I am alone and make me think so much that it keeps me awake at night was not something I thought would happen to me. I always over thought about pretty much everything. I always think of the “what if” in most of the things I do. What will be the short and long term repercussions of that decision?

Now, I have this little human to take care of and I just want the best for him. This pandemic put a lot of sticks in the wheels. I wasn’t able to connect with other moms like I would have if things were normal. I wasn’t able to do activities with other babies to help him socialize. I was pretty much alone for over 12 months. I am grateful my husband worked from home. Made me feel like I wasn’t completely alone and he helped so much. He’s a great father to my son, but it is not the same as connecting with other women dealing with a newborn, now a toddler.

I recently finished my maternity leave, which means that my little man is going to go to daycare soon and I can’t control that. To be honest, I am scared of sending him to daycare with this pandemic. I am sure that it is hard already without the pandemic, but it adds extra stress.

I know it will be best for him. He will be to socialize and learn a lot more than if he stays with me. There are days, that I don’t know if I do enough.

Recently, I realized that even something that will disrupt the routine will create an unbalance. I lose focus and become anxious and emotional… I never was like that.

Christmas is coming so fast and the idea of my son’s first Christmas wasn’t spending it alone. I thought we could spend it with family members. The same goes for his first birthday. This makes me so anxious and sad. You might say, I know that already, that he won’t remember it, but in my head, the first of everything is so important and worth celebrating with your family. Maybe it is more for me, but the fact that I already didn’t have a lot of support this year, makes it even more disappointing.

Having a child of my own along with the pandemic made me realize how important your family is and how much you need them… not having them around is difficult for me…

Image by Anemone123 from Pixabay

You’re 11 months old…

This month flew by so quickly and was full of milestones. You are on the move! Soon we won’t be able to keep up with you!

This month, you started to lift yourself on your walker all by yourself. All you want to do is walk. You learned to change directions, which makes you a little bit more independent.

You also started to stand up in your crib and started to climb the stairs. You sure know-how, but you have no clue about the danger and distances.

You had your first head bump while walking outside. You drove mommy crazy, as I was worried so much… Even if you played and giggled, I still was feeling anxious for days after.

You started to be so picky with your food it has no sense. Not sure how we will get you to eat the same food as we eat… even your purees you used to like seemed to be a problem. Not sure why, but hopefully it is just a phase.

Mommy went on the slide with you for the first time. I don’t think you cared much, but sure did a fool of myself.

You also started to cuddle more and come for mommy when you are upset which is so sweet. Mommy loves your cuddles.

You recently started to understand that moving on all four is much better than crawling on your stomach.

You are now walking independently yet but surely will come soon.
Mommy is so proud of you, my little angel.

Mom’s guilt has great power over us. You always worry if your kid is alright. You do whatever it takes to keep your kid safe, but you know that you have to step back one day so they learn to make mistakes. Once you loosen a little bit, something happens. Your kid gets hurt. You feel like crap. Then you are all over him and you make sure he’s alright and comforting him. When it’s your first child, you wonder if you need to go to the hospital or not even if it’s barely anything. A bump on the forehead, he cried maybe 5 minutes, maybe even less and now plays as nothing happened.

My son fell outside for the first time today. When I saw the distress in his eyes, I felt so guilty and the anxiety kicked in. I started feeling like I’m a bad mom that I should have seen it coming. In just a split second, he’s on the ground. I don’t even know how it happened. Things happen so quickly when you get distracted even if it’s just a second. I cried and still am when I think about it because you don’t know if things are good, even though he has a smile on his face. I keep your eyes open for signs, just in case. When things like that happen, you wish that you had eyes all around your head so you can see EVERYTHING!

You know that they need to learn, but as a mom, I find it so hard. You just want to overprotect your child, but you know that it’s not good and you will eventually need to step back even more and worry in your inside.

As a first time mom, I guess I have so much to learn. It’s probably a never-ending learning curve. Now that my son moves a lot more, things will become interesting. Today, it was probably more of a scare for him and the first time experiencing pain by falling. It was a first for me too and I’m probably overreacting a little, but as a mom, it’s probably my instinct that kicked in.

This is just the beginning of the adventure, there will be plenty more scare like this one.

You’re 10 months old…

Wow! How time is flying by so fast. In 2 more months you will be 1 year old. This makes me sad because you will no longer be considered as a baby. You will be graduating to toddlerhood. In the same time, I am so proud of you. You have accomplished so much!

You are walking with a walker since you’re 9 month old. Now you’re almost running with it and I can see that you’re preparing to try to walk on your own, but you still need to find trust and confidence in yourself.

You started to sit on your own just a few week ago and mommy is so proud of you!

Each day you make new noises! You have these long conversation with us. We don’t understand you, but it is so funny to hear you babble away.

You love throwing things around. Mommy is trying to teach you to put blocks in a bin, but you rather want them out of it and making noise by dumping blocks all over the floor.

You experimented the swing for the first time. You are so calm in it, enjoying the ride, you don’t want to come off it because you loved it so much!

You were miserable for a few weeks. Your top teeth are finally coming out.

You are not sleeping well lately, probably more teeth are coming soon. Mommy hate to see you cry and she wants to cuddle you, but you don’t want to, unless you decide that you want to be cuddled. You have been playing tricks with us the past few days. One day you sleep the whole night, others you cry for 2 hours and we don’t know why.

You have such a strong personality already. We love you as you are! Your smile always brighten our day.

When I became a mom 10 months ago, I promised myself that I will keep myself healthy as much as possible for my son. I want to make sure I live long enough to see my son grow and have kids of his own. By the time he’s 30, I will be 70.

Let me tell you, this is a huge promise and not an easy one. With the COVID-19 pandemic going on, it is hard to motivate yourself to stay active and eat well. I don’t know if you do the same, but it seems we are ordering more take-out and doing recipes that is more comfort food. I buy snacks that I usually wouldn’t.

With gyms closed and in my opinion, I wouldn’t even try to go to a gym. I am a bit scared to catch that virus, so I try to keep my contact very limited. I know the gym owners are doing a great job at disinfecting everything, but still. What’s left for me is doing things at home or outside which is very challenging.

I do try to go for a 5 km run at least twice a week, but I don’t think it’s enough. I make myself feel better by telling myself that at least I do go for those runs, but in my head, this isn’t enough to keep myself healthy, but the situation makes it very difficult.

Every time my husband and I try to do better, we fall into the trap of mutual encouragement of getting that take-out, bag of chips or that drink. Something that we could easily cut, but we still don’t. It is almost like an addiction. When your support person doesn’t help, it is just meant to fail.

Am I the only one struggling with this? What do you do to go back on track?

Tomorrow is a new day, a new beginning.

Life with a child can be hectic. Your kids wanting your attention all day long, leaving very little time to do things around the house or even doing self-care.

Before kids, you were able to manage the housework, have a clean house, make a plan to do things in the house and even time to go out for an afternoon.

When you have kids, trying to achieve what you used to be able to do is nearly impossible. You have to change your mindset and let go of certain things and change your standard quite a bit.

When the time comes to put your kid to bed, all you want to do is lying on the couch doing nothing or even go to bed early. There are so many things that need to get done, but we never get to do it.

For example, we want to repaint our house. There is so much you can do when your child is napping. Painting is not something you can stop fast if your kid wakes up, so this isn’t a job to do on nap time. You have to find little things to do or take the opportunity to sit and relax a little.

My husband is on vacation next week. We are hoping to finally paint the house. I kind of doubt we will be able to do what we want to do. There is no way we can focus both of us on the job at hand. I guess we will see.

The only way to get things done is to have one parent watch the kid while the other does the work.

Photo by Sandy Millar on Unsplash

Being bored with a kid is impossible. Every day is a new adventure. Yesterday he didn’t sleep through the night, last night he did. Go figure. Looks like it’s impossible to know when he will sleep. Maybe he’s just slowly transitioning.

Today he’s been a bit grumpy. I think his teeth are bothering him. It looks like all the four top teeth are coming out at the same time. Poor baby. Tylenol is our best friend lately.

He recently started sitting on his own and wanting to walk, although he can’t walk on his own. A lot is going on in his head right now. Lots of discoveries. Maybe that’s part of why he doesn’t want to sleep.

Photo by Johannes W on Unsplash

That is so true! The way I see this is that if you don’t do things you love, you will never be complete. If you do things to make others happy, you will always be incomplete.

Of course, you do need to make some compromise, but you also need to live your life and come mid-way. You still need to do things for yourself. Be you.

Simply Etta

Photo Credit

When we’re incomplete, we’re always searching for somebody to complete us. When, after a few years or a few months of a relationship, we find that we’re still unfulfilled, we blame our partners and take up with somebody more promising. This can go on and on–series polygamy–until we admit that while a partner can add sweet dimensions to our lives, we, each of us, are responsible for our own fulfillment. Nobody else can provide it for us, and to believe otherwise is to delude ourselves dangerously and to program for eventual failure every relationship we enter. 
Tom Robbins

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