Thursday, February 28, 2013

Every Storm Runs Out of Rain

We didn't get the news we were hoping for today. The MRI I had done on Monday just showed there are for sure two spots on the brain. The spot on the right side is just on the surface, the spot on the left side is pretty deep in tissue. We have a plan set and are hoping for the best.

I will be meeting with two radiologist, one that does stereotactic radiosurgery (pin point radiation) and one that does full brain radiation. I will also meet with a neurosurgeon  to discuss the surgery they will be doing to remove the metastase that is on the surface and will be taking some tissue to test. They need to figure out if the cancer is small cell or urachal cancer. After they remove the metastase on the right side they will do stereotactic radiosurgery to the left side since they wouldn't be able to remove that tumor without causing more issues. After that we will wait a couple of weeks to do full brain radiation and then I will do chemo again. The type of chemo will all depend on what type of cancer they find.

We are hoping the cancer is not small cell because the average time frame for the re-occurance is 6-8 weeks and the cancer is very aggressive. If it is urachal cancer the average time frame for re-occuracne is 6 months to a year. I am ready to be better than the average.

I am at a loss for words. It is so hard to be positive during this time but I am forcing myself to be. I am really scared of what is to come and worried about how hard I am going to have to fight. It was the hardest thing I have ever been told in my life and even harder to tell my family and friends. I couldn't talk to anyone without breaking down, I couldn't look at Kyle without breaking down. I just want to go home and for all this to be over with. I want to go back to our everyday normal life when the biggest worry we had was how to keep Abby from breaking out of the back yard. I want to plan a wedding, go racing with the family, coach some amazing young woman, spend time with the family, hang out with friends and just forget about everything. I have so much I want/need to do and don't really have time for this damn pot hole in the road. 

Kyle and I will fly home tomorrow night so we can get clean clothes, see our puppies and see both of our families. Mom, Kyle and I will fly back out Sunday night for my appointments on Monday. My surgery isn't scheduled yet but we are hoping they can get me in next week. If they can't I will be going back home to live a normal life for a couple days and try to forget about all of this.

 Every Storm Runs Out of Rain by Gary Allan is a very fitting song to all of this.

I will update after all my appointments.


Wednesday, February 27, 2013


Sorry a head of time for this being so long.....

It was so nice being in Phoenix in the warmer weather (it was still slightly chilli but I don't want to complain considering what home was getting). I got to give my brain a rest and not worry about anything but racing. It was my first race in my "new" car (dad's car from last year), dad first race in his new car (that just got done on the Saturday before we left) and JR would just bring Batman back out.

JR was sick for most of the weekend, we fought small bugs with dads car and JR basically did a blow over in Batman without actually going over. It was one of the craziest things I have seen and what does JR do after his car came back down to earth....continue driving, like no big deal. He ended up going 192 mph with one wheel bent, one tire flat and the body all bent up. Once we got back to the trailer his exact words were "I wasn't that high was I?". Lets just say he was high enough that Batman needs a new front end and a new body.

To finish the weekend off, JR ended up winning Top Sportsman in the s-10 truck he was driving for Joe Meyer. Unfortunately mom, dad and I couldn't stay for pictures because we had to leave to catch our flights. We did get to celebrate for a little bit but it was really hard leaving especially since I had to leave to go to Houston.

My flight was scheduled to leave at 6:30, I checked in around 6:15 and boarded the plane at 6:27, made it with some time to spare!  Because I checked in late my bags didn't make it on the same plane. I made it to Houston around 10 and had to wait an hour for Kyle to get there and we waited around to see if my luggage would show up but it never did. So we were told to come back Monday morning to check on it.

Monday rolled around and we headed back to the airport to pick up my two suitcases. We only ended up getting one because they didn't know where the other one was. When it showed up they were suppose to deliver it to my hotel. Luckily my big suitcase is the one that showed up so I had the majority of my clothes and shoes.

My appointment with the doctor was scheduled for 2:00 but we didn't go back to see her until 3:30 or so. When she walked in she just acted like I was there just for the heck of it, like nothing was wrong. After she asked some questions, she was ready to let us leave. It wasn't until Kyle and I explained to her that I was sent down here because of the spots on the brain that showed up on the MRI. She was confused and just thought we were talking about the spot on the skull they saw back in November. I had to repeat myself multiple times until she started to seem to get it. All the reports from the scans I had back home were faxed here last week. She had read the reports from the CT scan, the bone scan and the blood work but hadn't looked at the MRI reports. Once her nurse came back in to let us know they would be setting up and MRI this week, she informed us that the reports were on her desk and had been there, she just hadn't read them. Lets just say I was really frustrated that they didn't seem to know what was going on and if I wouldn't have said anything she would have just let me walk out of there like no big deal.

I was waiting to get blood work done when I received a phone cal telling me I would have an MRI that night at 9:00. I am glad they finally realized what was going on and got that set up in a hurry.

As of Tuesday I hadn't heard back from anyone. I am hoping I will get a call early Wednesday to let me know what I need to do now. The doctor will be out of town next week so she said she would need to see me by Thursday, but other than that I know nothing about what is going on. I just hope they got their act together and can figure out what is going on. I hate waiting and not having any idea what to do.

Since we had nothing to do Tuesday we decided to go walk around the mall before we would head to the Houston Rodeo. Our hotel is right next to the Reliant Stadium where the rodeo is being held so could just walk right across the street. This fair/rodeo is just a little bit bigger than the Riley County fair! There was so much going on, all day long. I believe Monday was the first day of it and it will run until March 17th.After the rodeo each night they have a small concert that features different bands and tonight was Gary Allan. It was nice to spend the night relaxing and not worry about when my next appointment was (not saying I didn't think about it, I just didn't worry about it!)

I will update everyone as soon as I get updated on what is going on.

Thanks for supportive texts, calls, emails, and facebook messages. They really mean a lot and help me stay positive during all of this. I wouldn't be able to make it though this bump in the road without the support of family and friends. We will get though this just like the last time. 


Tuesday, February 12, 2013


You can remove dandelions by digging them up but then they will just grow back. Or you can spray your yard with weed killer and more than likely that will kill them, but you will still have the slight chance they will grow back....

This was how Dr. Bell explained radiation to me versus going in and removing tumors off the brain. I had my MRI last week and met with Dr. Bell today to get the results. They saw two spots on the brain that concern them. One is on the right temporal and one is on the left temporal. They are very small and I haven't had any symptoms from them, so if they are anything we seem to have caught it early. I will be heading down to MD Anderson pretty soon to get another MRI and to get their opinion on this. They have specialist that look at MRI's of the brain all day long so they will maybe get a better idea of what these two spots are. I will more than likely be getting full brain radiation and will hopefully get it done up here but if not I will be spending some time down in Houston.

It's really hard for me to take all this in. This year has started off so good and I was hoping it would continue to be a healthy year. I am hoping this is just a small bump in the road and I can get through it and continue with my crazy busy life.



The Limo ride from the Airport that took over an hour!

There were 6 gyms set up and running at one time!
This was how our Sunday morning session started out with the Butler girls! They are not morning people.
Jordyn Wieber talking the level 8's
Alicia Sacromone talking to the level 5's during awards
Waiting to catch the train to the airport
Any chance they get they are on their hands.
Waiting to leave!

The competition was held at the Navy Pier


I wish we would have had a little more time to do some exploring but I still enjoyed the quick trip to Chicago. It was nice to see all the girls hanging out and getting to spend time with each other outside of the gym. The girls were really supportive of each other and took the time to come cheer each other on while they competed. I was really happy with how all of them did considering this was probably one of the largest meets most of them have ever been to and they kept it together and stayed focused during the whole meet. There was around 4300 gymnast competing from all around the USA, Mexico, Canada and Bermuda.

We have one more meet this coming up weekend and then the girls will have a week off. I on the other hand will use the weekend off from coaching to travel to Phoenix for the national event. 


Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Starting the year off right!

Once again, I know I have been slacking at keeping this up to date. Things have been really busy between getting the gym back into functional use and traveling for meets. Most of you may already know but I purchased half of the gym on December 17th and I couldn't be more excited and ready to start this journey. I have always wanted to own a gym and I am thankful I have been given this opportunity to pursue my dream.

The last blog I wrote was about going to get my check ups so I guess I need to update you on how those went. I had a scope of the bladder done with Dr. Laki and everything came back good there. We had a little scare when he looked at my CT scans (thought there was an enlarged lympth node) but that came back to be nothing. I met with Dr. Koeneke to get my lab results and to go over my scans. Everything was clear there and my lab work was were it needed to be. I was relieved to here all this good news right at the beginning of the year. I will be getting an MRI of the brain this Thursday and will meet with Dr. Bell next week to go over the results. Hoping for some more good news!

Meets have been going really well. We traveled to KC at the end of January and that started our 4 week circus. We just got back from Nebraska and will held to Chicago this weekend. When we get back from Chicago we will travel to Wichita and then have a weekend off of competitions. During that week off I will be flying out to Phoenix to race the national event out there. Dad and JR have been working their butts off to get dad's new car finished before Phoenix and I really wish I could be there to help more.

On another exciting note.....

Kyle showed up at the gym last night right at the end of practice and surprised me by proposing. He really caught be off guard which was good because I have been waiting for this moment for a while! Some of the team girls were here, Pam, Alicia, Mandi, and Allie all got to witness it. Having them here made the moment even more special.

I love the girls reactions in the background!

He did good!

Right now we are looking to do it this November, so let the planning begin. Something else to keep me busy!