Long due update

I am doing well. 

Sort of. I just don’t have very much energy. Hardly any at all.

My body is getting used to the medication, so I don’t have as much pain as I used to. Very grateful for this.  I am working 3 days a week, which is enough. 

For the last week I have had this terrible cough which drives me crazy. Due to my medication I already have sleepless nights. The endless coughing does not help.

I finally managed to go for my morning walk today, first time in a week. I have an appointment with my miracle woman Ljiana today – acupuncture and reflexology. 

The pounds keep piling on as the energy keeps pouring out. Waiting for the spring to change things up. To get in shape. To get my strength back. To be more social.

Waiting for the spring?! Get a grip. JUST DO IT. TODAY.

24 Things Women Over 30 Should Wear

Warning:Curves Ahead

This morning, as I was perusing my Facebook timeline, I happened upon an article that a lovely friend shared. It was entitled “24 Things Women Should Stop Wearing After Age 30”, and it triggered Maximum Eye-Rolling from everyone who took the time out to read it.

Written by Kallie Provencher for RantChic.com, this “article” (I use the term loosely) highlighted things such as “leopard print”, “graphic tees”, and “short dresses” (because “By this age, women should know it’s always better to leave something to the imagination”). Kallie, it seems, has a number of opinions on what women over 30 should and shouldn’t be doing, having also penned “30 Things Women Over 30 Shouldn’t Own” and “20 Pictures Women Over 30 Need To Stop Posting Online”. (What is this magical post-30 land where women are suddenly not allowed to do or own so many things?!)

Motivated by Kallie’s “article”, I decided to…

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A work in progress

I am slowly, but surely, moving towards my new normal. There is no looking back.

I started working a few weeks back. At first feeling confused, overwhelmed and utterly useless. This week I feel like a part of the puzzel. I have something to bring to the table. My presence is appriciated. I’m finding my bearings.

I work with people who know me well and wish me well. I just need to give myself time. Cut me some slack.

I have been to my oncologist for the one year checkup (They count one year from diagnosis), now got my bloodwork results back = all is well.  I was however totally unprepared for the emotional impact getting back to the hospital had on me. The smell. Chemobags. Tears. New patients with fearful faces. Old patients with fighter faces. Death lurking around every corner.  Full of empathy for them. Full of gratitude I made it.

Next step is getting my body scanned (bone density) and my mammogram. Also more bloodwork, urin and stool samples. November is filled with doctor appointments.

Physically I am making good progress. Still doing my stretching and morning mini walks. I started back at my gym (Bare Trening, Haugerud) this week. Worked out Monday and Wednesday. Even gave the treadmill a go. My knees are the ones giving me most trouble and most pain. I still managed to do 1.55 km in 16 minutes. Last time (some months ago) I walked for 400 meters and had to get off the treadmill because of the pain. Huge improvement.

Mentally I am struggeling more. I find it hard to focus . My forgetfullness drives my crazy at times. On “bad” days I can’t remember what I had for dinner or my childrens birthdates.  All sort of multitasking is but a fading memory. I “space out” without any warning and get easily very exhausted. Names – places – who – what – where….. I make no promesis now. Not to anyone, especially not to myself.

But on good days I shine. Like today. I can effortlessly follow and participate in a conversation. I can be useful, productive and helpful. An uplifter. Maybe even an inspiration.

When the next bad day comes knocking on my door, I just have tell myself in the words of Liz Taylor: Pour yourself a drink, put on some lipstick and pull yourself together 💋

I am a work in progress with moments of feeling like a masterpiece…..

2 months after last treatment

I had a great summer. We went to Crete for 2 weeks and the warmth and swimming was fantastic for my body. Most aches and pains were soon forgotten. The Håndlykken family was there for a week and we had the best of times together. May we soon meet again.

This summer we have been learning more about cooking, and are enjoying making new dishes and sometimes having friends come over to dinner. Making really good, healthy home made food makes me happy – and of course is good for my body as well.

Pictures of typical greek food, inspired from our vacation: stifado and pork souvlaki

So how am I doing now?

Well, I always try to have a positive attitude and I am not a grumphy person or someone who is big on complaining, but I have to blog the truth. There has been no relief from the side effects. Nothing. The sleepless nights just keep piling on. The night sweats and joint pain keeps me awake. In the morning I feel like a 80 year old woman. I get tired very easily, and have trouble staying focused for a long time. I drop out of conversations, and keep looking for words.

Still 1713 Letrozol (anti estrogen) pills to take…..

So what will I do?

I started last week on a rehabilitation program at the Radium hospital. Every Wednesday 14 boob sisters meet, charing experiences and backing each other up. We get lots of information and education from doctors and oncologist and physical therapists, and then there is 2 hours with different workout. Yesterday we had strength training. Today every muscle in my body is aching. AND, here’s the kicker: I slept like a baby!

Next week I will start with yoga on Mondays and strength workout on Thursdays. This is in addition to the Wednesday program. 

I will also continue my morning stretching and short walks. And the healthy cooking. And meeting friends who bring me energy and joy. And most importantly, I will love my life to the fullest ❤️

Picture of my newest boob sister Anne Marit, just starting her pink mile

The celebration party

I have so many awesome friends who have supported me and helped me kick cancers ass.

Some of them came to celebrate with me last Saturday at Lemongrass restaurant in Oslo. Lovely food and wine. Excellent shots made by Kamil.

The best of times. Thank you, it meant the world to me ❤️

I let the pictures tell the story:

Master the day

I had my last radiation on Friday 10 and that was the end of all cancer treatments. It was a very emotional moment. 8,5 months with treatments – surgery, chemo, radiation. I still have quite severe pain in joints and muscles, especially at night. This is the main reason why I sleep so little. I have woken up early for years, like 5ish, but now it is 2 or 3. This leaves me tired both physically and mentally. The Letrozol pills I have to take for 5 years has these side effects so I guess I will be struggeling with this for a while. 

Now it is time to rebuild, heal and gain strength both in my body and my mind. I didn’t know that cancer treatments would make you fat and damage your brain. I have much work to do and I will never be the same person as I was before cancer – I will be so much better!

To get this work done I am following the advice in this excellent book: Master the day by Alexander Heyne. I bought the audio version and I am half way through. The message is to build small daily habits and then keep the momentum going. This is perfect for me. I will not be fixed in 21 days, but rather a year. I have an app on my phone, Momentum, to keep track of my daily habits. This is a very useful tool, and necessary, because my short term memory is really bad right now.

So I am marching on, ever so optimistic about my future and looooving my life!