How I Landed My Brain MRI; New Findings

by Christie PErkiNS

This all started with my “trip” to  in Home Depot. I was just checking out lights. Luckily it was just my husband, me, and my random eyewitness that was on the aisle.

The floor was incredibly flat and smooth, not slick even a niche. Then poof! I dropped from eyesight. It’s like a magic trick. You know how tricks like this work: you see it, but you don’t.

How in the world can you fall on that? “That,” meaning nothing. I question my trick.

But, since my eyewitness was mentally documenting my fall and my husband had that quizzical look on his face I decided to fool them again. I pretended nothing happened. But the cock-eyed looks from the gents on the aisle made me splash out a smile, a chuckle, and a shrug.

Lets just forget that… moving along.

A couple of days later I’m in the granite store and we do a repeat trick. Wow. Fabulous moments going on here. Always getting the same quizzical look and silent words reverberate loud and clear in my ear…

What in the world?

My finale is always the same though: a smile, oops eyes, and a shrug. And the next several days I continue to fall when I walk. I trip on a thin cardboard box, the end of the broom- the straw fluffy-puff end, not the handle.

People begin booking my stunts. Continue reading

The Mysterious Masked Ma’am

by Christie Perkins

It’s not Halloween. Yet, she sports a mysterious mask. And, quite frankly, it doesn’t match her outfit. So what’s the deal?

the-mysterious-masked-maamYeah. Well. Thank you white blood cells. It’s official: my white blood cells have turned into couch potatoes.

The doc expected the cells to perform in a week and in two weeks they were still on vacation being lazy and making me a little stir crazy. So I decided to venture out. But of course I take my baby blue mask to filter out germs.

I miss human life forms.

I put it on and only my eyes lop over the top. Holy cow this is not what I was imagining. Couldn’t they make it slip just over the lips? I feel… noticeable (to say the least) as it covers my entire face. My makeup job this morning was a waste. Yay. But I wear lipstick anyway. It makes me feel better. This mask is fabulous for a back row kind of gal. Wow. Well. At least if I get lost I’ll have my SOS gear intact. Continue reading

How To Cross the Bridges of Tomorrow With Confidence

by Christie Perkins

she-turned-to-the-sunlight-and-shook-her-yellow-headand-whispered-to-her-neighbor_-_winter-is-dead-4So let’s be honest here.

I woke up the day I was to take my chemo pill with dread. I felt my chemo creepy crawlies coming on the few days before. The anticipation of the unknown was blown up in my mind. The list of possible side effects haunted and taunted me. And I knew that my life was crossing onto new and permanent territory.

I had to cross this bridge.

You see, up until this point the perks of my current life were highlighted and blaring in neon signs in my mind. They were good signs. Which of those signs would burn out when I crossed the bridge? Continue reading

Ride the Wave of Goodness

by christie Perkins

Life is not a constant tumultuous wave of trials, as it sometimes appears to be. Even in a life with stage 4 cancer. Every once in a while there’s a splash wave of goodness that comes your way.

You have to be watching for it.

Ride the Wave of GoodnessLast month was tough for us. We currently babysit this cancer by periodically popping our head in on what is going on. We expect good behavior. But sometimes we find a mess we have to clean up. And sometimes, with some assistance, these messes resolve themselves.

I head into my cat scan a little concerned. My hip has been hurting much more within the last month and my legs are going numb. It’s all a strange sensation- these playdough legs. I wasn’t quiet ready to eyeball my current situation but here I was facing the day. Slight tightness constricted my chest as I waited for the CAT scan to pop it’s head in on me. My breath quickens. My mind tosses around the “what ifs” in my head.

So I pull out my handy back-up plan: I pray. Continue reading

Trust. Follow. Find.

by Christie Perkins

My doctor appointments were 2 weeks apart. I had just seen my oncologist and everything checked out fine. There were some new things I had to consider concerning preventative measures but I was walking straight down the line of fine, as far as we could tell. I was tempted to cancel the second appointment, the one with my radiation doc. What possibly could pop up in 2 weeks?

It was ridiculous because I was seeing this doctor for the same thing anyway: checking on the well being of my situation.

I’m good.Trust. Follow. Find.

For some time I had been contemplating ditching my doctor appointments altogether. If I was okay, then what was the point. I was plotting a new plan of action: call the cancer center and tell them that I was graduating myself to 6 month check ups. Yes, I liked this thought. Though, yes, I liked seeing my great doctors and staff on a personal level but seriously? This frequent visiting was useless and it was eating my money.

Twice a year should suffice. Continue reading

How Cancer Changed My Grocery Shopping Excursion

by Christie Perkins

Cancer has changed me.

Before cancer I would grocery shop. Hustle, bustle, grumble, toss. It was just shopping, right? But, really, the thing I liked most about shopping was the people I would brush you're the greatest!against. When I think about it, this random people connection is really the only perk to grocery shopping. I would stand behind my cart and voluntarily hand out smile samples to random nameless go cart racers.

I liked greeting strangers. And to the familiar faces I would give a hey-holler. Personally, I like it when people want to see me, so I assume others like it when I see them. So I ding them with a smile.

It’s simple. But, it’s what I do when I shop. It’s how I shop. Continue reading

Cancer: Episode 2

by Christie Perkins

Funny how Heavenly Father has been helping me all along.

You know how sometimes you do things and you think that you are helping someone else. You hope and think you are changing the world in some small way. Your impressions to do certain things are so strong and as you follow them you are certain that someone was being helped by you and your efforts.

But then I realized something: this was all meant for me.

Cancer_ Episode 2All of this stressing, and worrying, and thinking, and planning, and writing was all for me. I was guided and prompted… and reminded of the goodness of God. I prayed many times that whoever needed these words on my blog would feel them and benefit from them. Heavenly Father in His goodness and kindness was telling me eternal truths that I felt so passionately about. I prayed that I would reach that one person who truly needed it.

I had no idea that that one person would be me. Continue reading

What are Your Unlikely Gratitude Candidates?

by Christie perkins

Unlikely GratiIt’s a tradition to think about what we are thankful for this time of year. Often the things that we are thankful for are traced back to some reason that triggered our insight. We can rattle off the things that we are grateful for that have given us comfort in our lives. But what about those not so awesome moments. Here’s a few of my triggers for my gratitude. Check out these unlikely candidates: Continue reading

When Angels Leave This Life

Survivors Guilt

by Christie Perkins

Untitled designI have three contacts in my phone I can no longer use. Anita, Sheree, and now Lori. All cancer friends. I can’t bring myself to erase these contacts, as if having them in my phone somehow keeps them close to me.

A flood of memories rush in when I see their name flash across as I’m scrolling for another contact. For a brief moment my heart goes soft and I am touched by their goodness. The memory of their smile greets me in this moment. I can almost hear their voice, their laughter comforting me and telling me that though there are hard times there is much sunshine.

I just can’t push “erase.” Continue reading

How Volcano Day Warmed My Soul

Cancer and Volcano Eruptions

by Christie Perkins

It was just the 5th grade volcano day.

For any other parent it would have been one of those dreaded weekend cram sessions of twirling homework hurling. But for me, life was erupting and spewing fresh hot lava down new paths.

Yep. Good old cancer diagnosis blew 5 days before volcano day.volcano day 012

The week I was diagnosed with cancer my life erupted and everything came to a halt. It seemed that all I could see was the lava flow of cancer. It was consuming me. Not that I was depressed, necessarily, but I was overwhelmed by the details of it.

One day I’m planning the sweet details of my own life and the next day my health care concerns are charring in life’s little fire. It’s like those sugared almonds I have trouble with. In one minute it’s looking good and then then next moment they are eyepopping black-ish. It’s the elite cancer lava plan I just got thrown into. Continue reading