Thursday, January 21, 2010

I am back!

Wow. This has been one incredible ride. I did shake a finger at my surgeon to let him know this is NOT an easier recovery than chemo and radiation. I am even struggling with typing this blog with the oxygen monitor on my finger. I didn't have that with the other treatments. I have yet to look in the mirror. I just can't get myself to do it. Call it denial but I just don't want to see how bad it is. I am dreading going home because I just know I will catch a glimpse of my face as I walk by one of the many mirrors in our house.

I definitely could not have gotten to this point without my family, friends and prayer warriors. Since day one of surgery each of you have come through for me to help me get through this ordeal. I felt each and every one of your prayers on Thursday, the day of surgery. I was able to contain my fear for most of the pre-op process. We were so thankful to have my sister and brother-in-low show their beautiful faces before I went into the OR. Pastor Dave, so thankful for your visit and prayers that morning. It brought much comfort and peace. I don't know who had it or Jason. I am sure waiting for me to come out of surgery was agonizing for Jason. I just hard a short little nap.

Waking up from surgery was not as scarey as I thought it would be. I was alone and had no family members nearby, but felt at peace. Special thanks to the prayer chain. And it did not take me long to realize I still had my eye. I had not lost my eye! It was so unbelievable I had to poke around at it for awhile to make sue I wasn't dreaming. Soon I learned how swollen my face was so the poking quickly stopped. I wasn't awake for every long. In fact the first few days are a blur. I couldn't even tell you what happened. I just remember telling Jason to go home at 10:00 am because it was so late in the day and he had been there way too long. The next day I couldn't believe he didn't stay with me for very long in the day. I do remember Jason telling me the good news. My surgeon believes the cancer is gone. The final pathology report does need to come back so I will not hold my breath until I get that report. I think we have all learned that lesson one too many times.

My biggest battles have been the trache and my leg. Having a trache is not fun. I struggled with breathing and keeping the airway clear from mucus. I hope I never have to another one again. I was so thankful when it came out. The hole is still there and if I want to talk or cough I have to plug the hole with my fingers. The hole should be closed in a couple of days.

My leg hurts like crazy. Taking out a bone is more painful than I thought it would be. I have to wear a big boot to protect it as well as the skin graph they used to repair my leg. I will be walking with a walker for awhile until I can bear weight on that leg. It will be interesting getting up and down the stairs at home. Jason will be getting quite the workout carrying me up and down the stairs. So he may benefit from this after all.

I will never forget waking up late one night and looking over seeing my Dad slumped over in a chair by my bedside. How much that meant to me! My family has made sure I had plenty of visitors to be by my side. Jason deserves a vacation after juggling work, being at the hospital and spending time the girls. And even though I didn't see them very much,I know my-in laws were behind the scenes making sure there was help whenever and wherever needed.

I still have a lot of healing to do in my face and leg. It will take many weeks until I feel like normal again. I will be getting teeth implants down the road. Luckily, that does not include a prosthetic eye. But I want you all to know how amazed the doctors and nurses have been with my recovery so far. I know it is because all of your prayers!!!

So I will be going home either today or tomorrow. I am looking forward to sleeping in my own bed again. I can't say I am looking forward to eating all of the wonderful meals being prepared for my family because I simply can't eat right now. I will be going home with a feeding tube in my nose. And I can't say you will be seeing me very much as I am sure I will be hiding out in my house afraid to show my face. Please keep the prayers coming. They are working. You have witnessed a miracle take place before your eyes. I am confident in that. Thank you GOD!!! He is good.

All my love,

PS - I was just visited by the surgeon, Pathology confirmed everything he found in surgery. So there are no new surprises and no new cancer that he wasn't aware of. So it is gone! Let's hope it stays that way!


Jen said...

Dear Sue,

It is SO wonderful to hear from you! You are a strong and amazing woman and an inspiration to all of us! We are thanking God that the pathology report came back with no cancer! God is good! We will continue to pray for a quick and pain-free recovery for you. Keep posting so we know how you are doing! :)

So much love to you,
Jen Falk

Anonymous said...


It is so great to see you back online and to hear that you will be going home soon! Thank Jason for keeping us all posted. That was so nice! We are continuing to pray for the recovery process and just wanted to let you know we're thinking of you!


mimi charmante said...

How wonderful to hear your voice again~ Jason was amazing and it was wonderful having updates, but knowing that you are able to post yourself really says something about your recovery.
I am so happy things went as well as they did Sue. I look forward to following your recovery~

Anonymous said...

Dear Sue,

The very fact that you're ready to come home today or tomorrow is a miracle! Prayers have been heard and honored by our Great God! Two days ago, I couldn't even imagine you coming home by Sunday, and now they're looking at an early out! Wow! God is so good! And you are amazingly strong!

I love you and thank God for you!


Anonymous said...

Sue-what a honor it's been to cover you and family in prayer! I smile! I share this verse for you to rehearse over and over and over on those days and in those times when the uglies creep in....

Psalm 139:14
hugs dear one!
-liz wutzke-

Jeremy, Michelle, and Girls said...

Home is a wonderful place. There is no place like home! To be surrounded by your girls will bring so much healing. You are amazingly beautiful. I will pray for relief from pain and swelling. You can look forward to watching movies and reruns in bed all weekend long with your family! I will be thinking of you and smiling!

All my love,
Michelle E.

Anonymous said...

Welcome Back Sue!

It is wonderful to see your words again! Congratulations on success. We will keep praying for continued healing. Enjoy going home. I hope to see you soon!


Anonymous said...

So great to hear from you!!! I am so excited by all your wonderful news! You are a totally amazing woman. I will continue to pray for healing and a speedy recovery. Let me know if there is anything you need. All my love, Ruth L.

Anonymous said...

Congratulations Sue! That is great news! I am so happy you get to go home. I bet you can't wait to be in your own bed. We will continue to pray for your healing. Let me know when you feel up to visitors. Hang in there!
All our love,
Trey, Cindy & boys

Anonymous said...

Oh Sue, this is the best news possible. I am so excited for you all. What a huge relief this is and now you can look forward to a long, happy, fulfilling life with your family and your friends. You will heal, probably not as quickly as you want to but you will be back to normal soon. And just go up and down the stairs on your butt, that is what I did when I couldn't bear weight on my leg. It's a great exercise for you stomach and arm muscles!!

I'm so happy for you Sue. Keep up the good work, you are doing awesome!

Susan Thomas

Jen Zick said...

Yay, Yay, Yay!!! So glad to hear you'll soon be home, and that you ARE cancer-free! I completely respect your plans to lay low in your house for now...but when you are ready to venture out (into the sunshine headed our way with spring around the corner!), I would love to be you walking buddy! One step at a time, right? Seeing you come this far, and be so strong, I'm sure you'll be outrunning me again in no time!!!!

Anonymous said...

So good to hear from you again after the surgery. We hope your recovery continues quickly and smoothly.

Jeff and Cindi Stewart

Anonymous said...

God has great plans for you Sue! It is so great to see your words on the blog again!!! We will not cease in praying for your continued recovery. Take care and love on your children and husband!!!!!

Julie Dahl

Anonymous said...

You did it, Sue! Be peaceful this weekend at home and just hang out!! I am so proud of you! I will keep praying for you, Jason and the girls. Every day your body heals and little bit! Look how far you've dome in a week! Cancer free! Bless you!

Love, Joan

Anonymous said...

Dear Sue,
We have been thanking God for answering prayers and will continue to pray for your recovery. Jason did a great job keeping everyone updated, but it's so good to read your words! I think your strength of character, faith, courage, and honesty make you even more beautiful than you were before. Enjoy going home and being with your family!


Tracy G.

Anonymous said...

Sue! PTL you can come home already!! Nikki and I were going to come see you today and Jason thought it best to wait especially since you were not getting much sleep with all the nurses in and out, etc. We are so thrilled for the amazing results - God is so good!! We love you!

Michelle, Steve & girls

Anonymous said...


Great, great news. Still praying for a speedy recovery!

Mark K. (& fam)

Anonymous said...

I don't even know you personally, but I am sitting here crying tears of joy for you. Praise God for this miracle...prayers have been heard! You have been an inspiration to so many. What a faithful, strong, beautiful woman you are! I'll pray for continued healing and many blessings for you and your family.

Debbie Pea
(friend of your Mom's)

Anonymous said...

That was a joy to read! Praise the Lord, he is working! The weather isn't nice right now, so staying inside is perfect, and by Spring you will be able to get around great, and by summer you will be rockin' and rollin'!

Derek and the Robertsons

Sabrina said...

Hi! I am friends with Beth Raese and I have been following your blog\updates through her. I am praying for you! I know it must be hard to be so positive, but you really seem in good spirits... I will continue to pray for less pain and more peace! Much love to you!

Anonymous said...

To God be the glory- great things He has done! Amazing Sue, absolutely incredible, tears of joy, give me goosebumps and send shivers down my back...WOW!!! ... you are going home? Does that summarize my feelings well enough for you. I am SO HAPPY for you to be finally going home!
I know you have the road of recovery yet ahead of you. Take your time and don't rush things. God will place His healing hands on you. Try not to put too much value in the mirror just yet. That too needs lots of time and healing. You are a beautiful woman inside and out and don't believe any other thoughts that come your way.
As missionary Rosalind Goforth wrote " There is nothing too great for His power, and nothing too small for His love."
Sue I have watched you bravely go through this trial putting your trust and faith in God and now you just like Job can say "When He has tried me, I shall come forth as Gold" (Job 23:10) Sue it is with tears of praise that I say thank you for standing firm in Christ and for inspiring all of us by your faith. You have come forth as GOLD!
God's peace dear friend and celebrate CANCER FREE... finally...
Hope to see you soon.

Anonymous said...

How wonderful to see your writing again, although Jason did a great job keeping us updated! He loves you with every piece of his are a lucky woman!
Going home to cuddle with your girls will be so good for you....sleep in YOUR bed! We are so happy for you and this wonderful news and progress...1 week is all that it has been, unbelievable how medicine has improved...thank the Lord!
You ARE cancer free...congratulations, and keep those thoughts within easy reach when you are uncomfortable..this will all pass. Watch the mail for a family gift :)
Love, Kari Karrmann Sides

Anonymous said...


You are amazing! We have kept you and your family in our prayers and will continue to pray for a speedy recovery. Your strength, grace and courage, and that of your husband, is an inspiration to us all.

Sending you our prayers,

Deb Quanbeck Kovats

Anonymous said...

What great news! You have been very blessed, and your faith has brought you through. Best of luck as you continue on your journey, and tackle those stairs! :) always remember, beauty is on the inside, Sue. And you will be glowing regardless of any bandages.

Kathy Cowan

Anonymous said...

You are so much more of an inspiration than you will ever know. Your testimony continues to grow. May God bless you beyond your wildest imagination. You are loved.