We are home! Disney was magical and just what we needed! There are so many behind the scene people that helped us with this vacation and helped make our dreams come true. Whether it was money, helpful advise or words of kindness to help us enjoy this time as a family even with the recurrence of cancer trying to come in at the most inconvenient time to try to destroy our time! We had a blast and could not be more happy! So thank you!
We left for Disney on Monday. Most of you know we were going the surprise route with Justin. Since the trip did go up in the air these past 2 weeks, I am so glad we didn't decide to tell him about this trip. We really didn't know for sure that it was a go until the Friday before we were leaving. So Monday morning we woke the boys up and I put them in Disney t-shirts. While we waited for our limo to pick us up, Justin watched the Nascar race that we DVR'd from the night before. Not the entire race, but the last 10 laps. Luck would have it, his man Kyle Busch won! So while he watched, Don was busy strapping Ryan's car seat in the limo and loading the luggage. Once we got outside and he sees the limo, he thinks that is the surprise and thinks it is super cool. We get in and tell him "WE ARE GOING TO DISNEY". He was excited and happy, but Don and I decided he probably didn't know exactly what that meant since he had only heard about it. So good surprise, but not exactly as I dreamt, but that was okay.
From Animal Kingdom, Magic Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, swimming, breakfast with Mickey to Nascar, we did so much and had a blast. This trip was exactly what we needed. Let me tell you that being at Disney in the hot weather and walking as much as we did, it was hard to think that I have a serious cancer. There were a few times I would think they must be wrong. I am pushing stroller with sweat running down my face, walking miles on end, fighting a one year old to get in a stroller and enjoying the joys and laughter of my children....No way in hell do I have cancer again. Oh how I wish they were wrong and to put it out there, I did make several wishes at Disney that they were wrong. But we know the news was received, so I also just made several wishes that this fight would be an easy fight and that it is easy to get through and it is just another "speed bump" in our life.
To be honest, I did not think of cancer much on our trip. We kept things as normal as possible and just lived our life like cancer did not exist. I know we can't ignore the huge elephant in the room forever, but I just wanted to be like the other families there. I did think a lot when people watching: what is their story, why are they here, has the mom in that family ever cried as much as I have the past year? Have they ever received devastating news? Does that dad stay up late worrying about losing his wife? Some families looked too damn happy to have anything like terrifying cancer in their lives, but I would like to think if people were people watching us, they would have thought the same.... They are just a hot, happy family from Illinois taking their kids to Disney for the first time. I wanted that normalcy. I wanted to pretend or imagine our life like it was now, but without cancer! Is is easy to do at a place like Disney! In no way was I passing judgment in my people watching, there were plenty of families I saw that were not able to disguise their fears and sadness like we could. People with a sick family member or a child that was ill. It did make me realize we are not alone. And even though that "one" family was happy, they might have a mother, daughter, sister, brother, father, aunt or uncle going through something. We all have our own story and our own battles.
Friday my magical experience started coming to an end. That was when I started receiving e-mails and phone calls. Confirming appointments, letting me know my next steps, etc. We are still waiting to hear from Northwestern on what their tumor board has to say. We have heard from my oncologist who has spoken with a Doctor at the University of Chicago in regards to a clinical trial for Triple Negative recurrence. I am getting all of my records, path reports and labs sent to them so I can get in with the doctor there this week to discuss the trial and what I will need to do. Some have asked me why I am choosing a trial. Well, from meeting with my oncologist last week, there is not a set regiment for a recurrence. What they do know is since I had a recurrence within the first year of my original diagnoses, they know I can not do the same chemo drugs as I did before. This is because obviously those drugs did not do the trick to rid me of cancer. So we are on to bigger and better things to kick cancers butt! So the trial will be a chemotherapy, but the drugs of choice, I do not know just yet. I will continue to learn more about our plans this coming week. I am ready to get the show on the road. I know my cancer probably did not choose to vacation last week so it is time to get moving!
I will post more when I know more this week! I will post some pictures later, Justin has kidnapped my phone.