Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Fab-u-Wishes do come true with Giuliana Rancic! Come join Me at the Pink Party May 3!

Your invited to join on Saturday May 3, 2014 from 6 to 9 pm at the Westfield Garden State Plaza Mall Nieman Marcus court, lower level The Pink Party with special guest Giuliana Rancic.

I am excited to say I am going to be attending!  I admire anyone who is willing and open to discussing women's cancers and Giuliana and her organization Fab-u-Wish are all about this discussion.  It is never to early to start conversations surrounding women's health especially women's cancers.  To learn more about her, Fab-u-wish and Bright Pink you can access details on the following link: http://www.brightpink.org/ive-been-diagnosed/fab-u-wish/

There are two types of tickets for this exclusive event:

The Pink Party $100.00 to attend
See their runway show featuring the latest trends from top retailers, including Vince Camuto, Robin's Jean and Karen Millen.  Then get ready for Giuliana's Gorgeous Giveaways, where 20 guests will win must-haves from luxury brands like Tiffany & Co. and more.  Giuliana will also grant special Fab-U-Wishes to women who've been diagnosed with breast or ovarian cancer!


Throughout the evening, enjoy cocktails, hors d'oeuvres, small plates and sweet treats and then shop until 10:30 as participating shops will stay open later just for us!  And as a thank-you for supporting Fab-U-Wish, you'll receive an exclusive gift bag filled with fashionable surprises.  All ticket proceeds go to Giuliana Rancic's Fab-U-Wish foundation.


The Pink Party + VIP Vince Camuto Experience $125.00 to attend 

Same access as The Pink Party Plus the VIP Experience:  Spend an intimate afternoon with the leading designer in fashion today, Vince Camuto, as he shares his latest fashion trends off the runway.  Limited availability. All ticket proceeds go to Giuliana Rancic's Fab-U-Wish foundation.

Tickets for this event can be purchased through the following link: http://www.eventbrite.com/e/the-pink-party-tickets-11139296937

What better way than to shop and support a charity that grants the wishes of some tough warrior woman fighting breast and or ovarian cancers!

Ticket sales are going quickly so make you purchase today.  This is also a great early Mother's Day gift! (hint hint to those who are local and still looking for something for their mom’s)




Tuesday, April 22, 2014

My Surgeon said yes!

Where do I start with today?.... Ah yes 5:30 am with my toddler Bridget who wore her first princess nightgown last night and decided to take her diaper off and call me to come get her.  So I did and when she would not go back to sleep because Ken and Harkin where still sleeping and I had no desire to fight her yes we put on Frozen.  In fact the closing credits were running when Harkin started fussing for a bottle at 6:50.  So I fed her, started the coffee and got Ken up.

I ran around like a mad woman to get myself together because Ken and I were headed to not only the cancer center for shot 1 of 3 this week of the nasty neulasta and premeds of (zofran nausea, dilaudid for pain and benadryl for hives) than is was off to Dr. Warden the breast surgeon for a follow up and most importantly the decision to have a prophylactic mastectomy.

I got to see one of my favorite chemo buddies today Annie.  She always brings such life and sunshine to the conversations!  I love it!  I got through everything fairly quickly (port is still accessed from Monday) and made it back over to the main hospital with a great parking spot right on time for my breast surgeon appointment.  Than we had to wait to see Dr. Warden.  There is always a wait to see her because she is such a good doctor and in high demand.

When Ken and I got in to see her we reviewed my right mastectomy site to see how it was healing.  Everything looks just fine.  She than did and exam of the left breast.  And than we discussed a left prophylactic mastectomy.  I explained all of my concerns and asked if she would do the surgery and than immediately following I would have Dr. Cohen start the reconstruction.  She said YES!!!! 

I have my first mammogram scheduled for this Friday for my left breast to get a baseline.  I will now begin to work with her scheduler to find a time in late July/early August for the surgery.  I will need to complete chemo, allow my body 6 to 8 weeks to heal, do blood work, receive the okay from my general practitioner, and have my port taken out.  That is a lot but hey at least we are getting some where!

Once we wrapped up all of this Ken took me home and he headed into work.  I was about to rest when I got a phone call from Ken that Bridget had a fever of 101 and we had to pick her up.  I got myself together ran down to grab her and took her to the pediatrician.  They checked for an ear infection and everything was clear seems it was something viral but her allergies are also bothering her.  So we started Bridget on Children's claritin 24 hours once a day liquid.  She got a vapor bath and we started the humidifier with the vick's eucalyptus and alternate between the tylenol and the motrin for the fever.  I am PRAYING Harkin does not get a fever because she is still in that too young to get a high fever with out going to the hospital stay.  As soon as Bridget got home she was boucing all over the place making it hard for me to rest. 

I am now going to take a hot bath with Epsom salts to hopefully help the achiness.  The pain is already starting and I have two more of these nasty shots to go this week.  I pray I can walk by Thursday.  


Thanks for all your prayers and support.  I am going to get though this!  It might be painful but I am determined to cross the chemo finish line!

Please don't forget about my Avon walk for Breast Cancer fund raising goal.  I need to reach $1800 to walk in October even a $5 dollar donation helps :)  http://info.avonfoundation.org/site/TR/Walk/NewYork?px=7413439&pg=personal&fr_id=2366


Monday, April 21, 2014

Nasty Neulasta...six months post mastectomy...and feeling defeated


Today I went for a labs (cbc) which is a finger stick that is done before I see the doctor to determine if I can get chemo.  They check for the white blood cell counts, red blood cell counts and the neutrophils.  The neutrophils generally need to be a 1.5 for me to receive chemo. 

When I got to see Dr. Graham today she told me bad news I was not receiving chemo because my counts were too low.  I thought how could this be I am on a heavy duty antibiotic, I got the neulasta two days last week and I skipped a week of chemo to allow my body to catch up, recharge and build white blood cells.

Last week on Tuesday after NO CHEMO and only TWO neulasta shots and heavy duty pain medication I was STILL in agonizing pain on Tuesday evening.  Dr. Graham sent me to the infusion room to draw blood from my port for more specific analysis of my levels.  One of two options where going to occur: I would qualify for chemo or I would start receiving this shot to build my levels and get chemo at the end of the week. 

My port was okay to access today but it was tricky with the blood return.  This means the nurses ability to access and draw blood right through the port.  Sure beats getting and iv or stuck with more needles in my none existent veins.  It took over a half an hour to get the results back and they came in with neutrophils at 1.3 again they need to be 1.5.  The nurse went to check with the doctor and they determined to run the chemo anyway.  This was the GOOD news.  The BAD news is I will now be receiving the nasty neulasta shot Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday for this week and going forward I may need it Tuesday through Friday!  So I went from spending one day to two days in the cancer center to potentially spending 4 to 5 days there a week!  Seriously! Now we need to extend the baby nurse company further because my treatment has intensified.  I wonder how Ken and I are going to swing this as it is necessary but very expensive and this is just the hours Ken is at work.  Now I will not be able to help in the evening and the weekends which I had been doing all along now.  The other issue is we leave my port accessed all week because it does not make sense to be a human pin cushion and stuck every single day.  It poses problems with Bridget and Harkin tugging on it or slamming into it.  Bridget when to hug me and head butted me in the chest where it is and I saw starts for sure!

So no this week take the cumulative chemo effect of achiness and bone pain I receive from the Taxol chemo and multiply this by three of the shots this week.  I may not be able to walk by the end of the week.  I wish I was kidding here but the last time I got the shot after the C-section, emergency abdominal bleeding muscle repair and infection I was not able to walk the nurses had to sorta carry me or move me from the bed to the chair and vice versa.  I HATE not being mobile and needing that level of help to get around.  We tweaked the pain medication by upping the pain patch to 50 mg but I remained scared as to how bad this pain is going to be....

I am a patient person but I am starting to loose it!  I HATE CANCER!  I am tired, my body is tired and I just want to get through this and start to actual recover.  Today is six months post mastectomy and I am happy I am still her the prognosis is good for the long term but I can't seem to get out of this day to day crap.  I want to start to be able to get back to NORMAL what ever that is and plan my life not live in these moments of can I get the chemo, am i too sick, do I have infection.  Its like a bad game of bingo and I am filling up all of the spots with bad news!  And when you are in in immense pain it is hard to be super positive.  Sorry for all the bitching I am just sooo tired.  I know I will make it but right now I am wallowing because well I can...

Tomorrow is the breast surgeon to talk about the prophetical left mastectomy.  I want this off because I am not dealing with this cancer shit again.  Cancer get the hell out of my body and stay out!!!!  There is no room for you in my life!!!!!  That is all

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Sometimes its tough....

It's tough to be a parent in the best of circumstances but when you have cancer being a parent becomes that much tougher.  The range of emotions is exhausting everything from fatigue, exhaustion, frustration, happiness, anger, sadness, etc.  The list goes on and on and there is no break from cancer.  You can't just put it on hold; it is always there!

Three days weekends are especially tough.  It's not that I am not grateful I really am but being a mom with breast cancer is just plain tough. Bridget is full of energy and toddler meltdowns coupled with a two month old that needs to eat every 3 hours and has gas issues makes for a tiring and challenging weekend for me.  We also choose in an effort to safe money we do not have the Bella's here on the weekends so it is just Ken and myself.  And inevitably we get on each others nerves as well.  Now couple this with chemo brain where I literally loose my train of thought in the middle of speaking or typing I get so frustrated and can't even finish a conversation. So sometimes it is just tough....

I am also feeling cooped up because I am trying to lay low and ensure my counts are high enough to receive chemo this week.  Harkin also has not received her shots so we don't bring her out in public just yet as we don't want her to get sick.  I have seen so many wonderful family family photos of people on Easter egg hunts, local farms, the zoo, the Easter Bunny and so much more and I get a little ping of jealousy as well as sadness because we are staying in because I am tired and achy and can't expose myself to large crowds.  I have to remind myself this is for the long haul so I can be here for future fun events with my children but in the moment sometimes it is just tough...

Summer is coming...

I know it seems like Spring barely just arrived and in some cases traces of winter keep coming back but summer is around the corner.  I have decided that I am not going to wear a moo moo or skip the beach and pool situations all together this summer because of my body conscious issues (THIS IS A HUGE DECISION FOR ME!) I am going to get a surfer swimsuit like a short sleeve top and shorts to hide all the scars and things I have not yet dealt with.  Especially since my surgery will not be until the end of the summer and I am still not comfortable in my own skin I figure this is a good medium until I can get back my confidence, start working out and have the reconstruction surgery.

The product line up:
Since being diagnosed with cancer I have tried out a quite a few products to try and find what works the best for me.  Here is a sampling of three products that I swear by: Bio Oil - helps with scars and stretch marks, Vitamin e oil for healing and scars, and vanicream to keep my skin from drying out.  These three work wonders!



A Special Thank You:

To my sister Jen for some much needed sister time yesterday!  We were so successful shopping we got our mom her Mother's Day gift already :)

To Leslie who brought me these patron saints charms: Saint Gerard, Saint Anne and Saint Peregrine.

To Calynn and igopink for the breast cancer charity packet with super cute t-shirt, bracelet, pen and so much more!

To Bella Bambini, Rachel and the Bella girls for the amazing and super taste Strawberry bouquet.  You know how to cheer a girl up ;)

Avon Walk for Breast Cancer:

Please support me in my efforts to fund-raise enough to walk in October.  Remember no donation is too small every dollar helps me closer to my goal.  I want to walk with other survivors and show my girls I can do this!  Please share my link with others so I can share my message with others and reach my goal!

http://info.avonfoundation.org/site/TR/Walk/NewYork?px=7413439&pg=personal&fr_id=2366


Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Feeling lighter....

Last night I sobbed in pain to Ken.  The pain was so bad it hurt down to my core.  My bones felt like they were going to break.  Ken made me a hot bath with epson salts http://www.saltworks.us/salt_info/epsom-uses-benefits.asp.  I took some heavy duty pain medication and it barely numbed the pain and this is with the pain patch on too.  This shot is brutal!  I really hope it is working and my white blood cell counts go back up.

Thankfully today I had something brighter to look forward to.  Today I had my first reiki energy healing session with Carol.  She is a Reiki master as well as a spiritual healer and angelic messages. 

I went to the session with an open mind and the only thing she new was I had cancer. From the start of the session she had incredible details that no one would ever have known about me especially for just meeting me.  As well as having details about my Dad who passed away it will be 6 years this December and my Grandmother who passed away 3 years ago this Spring. 

I needed to hear some of the messages from him.  I needed to know my cancer is going to go away and that by having it while pregnant truly saved my life because it would have grown bigger and went undetected otherwise.  I need to evaluate my life and focus on the important things which I have been doing since my diagnosis.  I will ultimately turn this diagnosis into a way to help others.  I think I have already started that with this blog but I feel like there is more for me to bring.

In case you are interested her is here contact information below.
Carol Daniele
email ghealinge@aol.com
201-749-3166
www.goodhealingenergy.com

I am sorry I will be missing a coworker and fellow survivor of breast cancers celebration dinner tonight but I was instructed to stay away from crowds and get rest so I can get my chemo next week.  Sending you all my best Erin!

For me staying in is easier said that done but I need to be well and finish this chemo!

Thank you for all of those who have made donations so far to my Avon walk for breast cancer.  Every little bit helps.  If you have not donated here is the link:
http://info.avonfoundation.org/site/TR/Walk/NewYork?px=7413439&pg=personal&fr_id=2366

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

......Stand up eight times

Today I woke up and happy to report a smoother morning in the Nutter household.  I was very stiff and in a fair amount of pain today.  I also had a hard time sleeping last night maybe it was the pain, maybe it was the full moon, or the fact this was the first chemo I was not able to receive because of my counts or a combination of the three.  We had Amanda the Bella scheduled today come and hour early so I could get out the door and on my way. 

My Tante Joanne was nice enough to come back today and take be for the neulasta shot or as I like to call it the nasty neulasta.  I received zofran for nausea, benadryl for the hives and itching, dilaudid for the pain and than the shot.  That was the last one for this week now I need to lay low, rest and pray my counts build up over the week. 

I ran into a chemo buddy of mine Annie today it was great to see her she is another strong and beautiful spirit fighting a different battle than mine but she wears greats shoes too!

Sad to report today was a fun flats and make-up free day as I just was not feeling up to it.  I did wear jeans though so no yoga pants.  It was one step in the right direction.  The pain makes it hard for me to really move around a lot and want to get up and do this and the weather sure does not help. 

Yesterday I was having a bit of a Kristin pity party as I was upset about the set back.  You have to crawl before you can walk and you have to walk before you can run.  I decided it is time for me to put something positive to work towards in my future.  I registered myself for the 2014 Avon Breast Cancer Walk in NYC.  I will need your help to do this as I have to reach a donation goal of $1800 to walk.  

I did the math:
  • If 120 people donate $15 dollars each goal met
  • If 100 people donate $18 dollars each goal met
  • If 75 people donate $24 dollars each goal met
  • If 50 people donate $36 dollars each goal met
  • If 40 people donate $45 dollars goal met
So on and so forth.....

Please help me reach this goal!  I am walking for breast cancer, a cure, research, helping other women and for my girls!   Your amount will remain confidential so please donate whatever amount you can and feel comfortable with than share with others so they can donate and support the cause too!

If I raise:
  • $100 in 10 days I qualify for a T-shirt
  • $600 in 30 days I qualify for a water bottle
  • $1000 in 45 days I qualify for a hydration pack
  • $1800 in 60 days I qualify for a tote bag
Here is my donation page:  http://info.avonfoundation.org/site/TR/Walk/NewYork?px=7413439&pg=personal&fr_id=2366

Inspiration video on the walk: http://youtu.be/4U5Eh_xTx0A

I might not be able to run the NYC marathon this year but I have added this to my list of lifetime achievements.  Rasheq ran this for and donated his metal to me in 2013 (I take this metal and my other chemo support items in my chemo back EVERY TIME I GO).  I plan to run this in the future and earn my own metal to than share with someone else in need of inspiration.  So if you could help me change over from the crawling to the walking part I would be so very grateful!  Remember every little bit counts!

Monday, April 14, 2014

Fall down 7 times....

Today started out with Bridget calling me 45 mins early on the monitor.  It went something like "Mommy Mommy come hear poop in the butt don't touch.  I opened her bedroom door to find she had diarrhea EVERYWHERE!  I quickly sprung into action striped her down started a bath, got the Lysol, shout, resolve, bleach and every other cleaning product I could grab.  I successful disinfected everything.  This is because I let her eat lasagna last night and she is lactose intolerant and well bad mommy choice.  I was looking for the easy way out at dinner last night with Ken at another hockey game and I paid for it in the long run.

Got Ken up with bad allergies this morning and needed to start z-pak and the baby woke at 7 (sleep training is going well knock wood so far). I got her dressed and fed. Than I got myself together including totally kiss ass chemo shoes!

Ken and Bridget left for school.  My mom and Tante Joanne came to take me to chemo and the baby nurse came for Harkin.  We went to the cancer center got great parking and off to labs I went.  When Dr. Graham came in I knew something was off and she said I did not qualify for chemo because of my white blood cell counts. 

Today's labs:
WBC 2.2
HGB 13.2
Platelet count 176
Abs Neutrophils 0.8

So this will push treatment back by one week and chemo 7 of 12 will be Monday, April 21.  I now also have to get the neulasta shot to boost my white blood cell counts or as most like to call it nasty neulasta.  I received it today and will need to get it again tomorrow.  The problem is I am allergic to the shot and I get hives and extreme bone pain.  I am on the pain patch, I need benadryl for the hives and I had to start a heavy duty antibiotic as I still have fluid in my ear and an ear infection :( All of this makes me very sleepy.

Monday 4/21 I will resume with the Taxol chemo and receive 7 of 12.  I will than go for the shot on Tuesday 4/22 and Wednesday 4/23 to keep the white blood cell counts up.  I was really hoping it would not come to this as the shot really slows me down and the pain is hard to deal with.

I have hit a point of frustration.  I must have pushed it too hard these last few days.  Now I am suppose to rest and stay home and away from crowds and germs.  It figures as I have a packed week that I will most likely need to cancel...I am having a bit of a why me pity party coupled with it's not f***ing fair!  I HATE CANCER!!!!!

Here is to hoping my white blood cell counts improve and I am not laid up with too much pain.