Friday, July 4, 2008


Yesterday was the first day in a long time that I felt emotionally normal. Yesterday and today, I am in a good mood - on an even keel - and I have had two good night's sleep.

Part of it, I'm sure, has to do with all the good, positive energy that you all are sending me. I hope you know how much I appreciate it and how much it helps me.

Part of it also has to do with the fact that I'm on the downhill side of radiation treatments. YAY!

Part of it has to do with some books that I've been reading lately that have to do with energy healing such as acupuncture, spirituality, and things like past life regressions. Through counseling, acupuncture, reiki, and taking time to try to get at the bottom of some really deep-rooted issues I have seems to be making a difference.

I must admit, too, that part of it has to do with the fact that I am receiving more money through various work efforts than I expected. I received Year Two funding on one grant a bit earlier which will enable me to travel to Alaska and do some interviewing and it will give me some extra salary this summer. In fact, I received some of it at the end of June and I thought that I might receive a certain amount and when I got the check, it was a couple of hundred dollars more than expected. Then, the work that I did at NSF two weeks ago also gave me a stipend and I found out yesterday that it was about $200 more than expected. I cowrote an encyclopedia entry with a colleague last year and when it was to be published, the press was going to give us a $250 honorarium - didn't know when that might happen, but I found out that I should get it within the next couple of weeks. And, another colleague wrote me into her grant (I just had to give her my CV) and we found out that it was funded by the Alaska Humanities Forum and that comes with salary over the next 18 months that I wasn't expecting.

In other words, my financial situation is looking up again. I've been on a reduced salary (60%) all of this year because I am on sabbatical. Dealing with a cancer diagnosis and treatments was a shitty way to spend my sabbatical, but at least I didn't have to teach or go to meetings I didn't want to go to. Since last October, though, I've been relying on my home equity line of credit, a little bit of grant funding, and my tax refund to make up my monthly payments and to pay out-of-pocket medical expenses. So, I've gone a little deeper into debt (with the HELOC), but it's a small price to pay for my health.

So, what did I do with the little bit of extra money? Well, I had some work done on my car - deferred maintenance like flushing fluids and all that - and was able to put more into payments on the HELOC and the credit card. And, I have some left to create my mandala mosaic and next month I will be able to have extra for raised beds and maybe even to begin some home remodel projects - I have a grand scheme to turn this family room that's little used into a master suite, which will then enable me to get rid of this useless 1/2 bath at one end of the house and create a bigger bathroom and a bigger closet. I also want to build a deck in the backyard. I am also toying around with the idea of building another structure on my property. This structure will be a place for meditation and healing . . . it's an idea that came to me a few days ago and I really like the idea.

For the past week, too, I have been thinking that I am in remission. It may be just wishful thinking, but I don't think so. I hadn't allowed myself to think that far ahead. However, I just have this feeling that all the things that I've been doing (radiation, chemo, acupuncture and Chinese medicine, counseling and spiritual work) to beat this shitty cancer is working. I am more hopeful than I have been in a long time- I see light at the end of the tunnel. I've been imagining the reconstruction surgery and getting rid of these tissue expanders - I hope that that will happen in September. I've been doing a lot of visualization.

A lot of people have helped me . . . my folks, my family, Scott, my son, my friends, my colleagues, my fellow bloggers, my fellow King Islanders, even this nice man on the plane from Raleigh to Dallas (Sean Park, who is the pastor of Charisma Church in Raleigh) said that he and his colleagues and parishioners would pray for me. I hope you all know that I really appreciate it.

I also have a good, fun week-end ahead of me. Today, Heather (of My Xeloda fame) and her family (Kevin, Josh, Amy, Jackson, and Josh's and Heather's parents), Scott, Ashlee, Eddie, and I are going to have a picnic in Brownsville and then watch the fireworks. Tomorrow, my folks and Eddie and I head to Portland for the day and night - we'll hang out and do fun things in Portland during the day and mom will get to see her cousin, Marie, and then Scott will join me for a pre-wedding cocktail party on Saturday evening (mom and dad will babysit Eddie and stay at a hotel downtown). Andrew's (the friend who suggested that I start a blog to begin with) and Jessica's wedding is on Sunday and I found a nice dress and some shoes to go with it this week! All in all, it should be fun.

Happy 4th of July everyone! Have a great week-end! I think I will!


jeanne said...

oh happy happy happy day. i'm so glad to hear it! (i love that feeling of when the cloud lifts or the clouds part or whatever!) nyc jmf

Carver said...

Deanna, What a great post to read. I am so happy to hear that you are feeling better and have so many good things on the horizon. I hope you have a wonderful Fourth. Cheers, Carver

Dee said...

Jeanne and Carver,
Thank you both! I do feel so much better and part of it, I'm sure, is all the support you both have given me. I hope this day is happy for both of you, too!

david mcmahon said...

Welcome back - you have all your blog friends in support of everything you do.

Jeanne said...

Dee--this is fabulous! You feel like you are in remission (go with that feeling--but you know that) and you have some extra cash as well. Wonderful!

I just finished putting up a post about you as an intro to the Cancer Bloggers Reunion. Writing it made me miss you, and Eddie too.

Here's the link:

One question, though: Whose wedding are you going to? I missed that part.

Big hug,

(Seattle) Jeanne

Dee said...

Hi Seattle Jeanne,
The wedding was for my friend, Andrew (who suggested that I start the blog) and his lovely bride, Jessica. Their wedding was in Portland in the Pearl District. It was fun . . . I found a cool dress to wear and also a pair of 3-inch heels that I could actually walk in - well, I mean, I could walk for short distances in them without feeling like I was going to break my ankle.

And, David McMahon, thank you for visiting and for your support.

Jeanne said...

Three inch heels? You're brave. The tallest I can attempt is about 1 1/2. Of course, if I lost some weight ... there'd be less to balance.

Glad you had a good time, and let me know if you're profile on my site is OK. Love the photo of you and Eddie on the beach.

Seattle Jeanne