"if you are not living on the edge, you are taking up too much room"

Friday, April 26, 2013

and the hits just keep on coming!

We have been set up here in our daughters driveway for the last few nights. Howard and Linda from RV Dreams refer to it as "mooch docking". :-)
Our plan was to leave here tomorrow and head for South Dakota for our summer work camping job. We have enjoyed our time back "home" visiting our relatives, spending time with friends and spoiling our grand kids. I could have done with out the flood but that is just small potatoes in the bigger picture of life. We have also been busy doing our annual routine medical exams while we are nearby our family doctor. We got our prescriptions renewed for another year and Rudee took care of those "female" exams and xrays. She had to go back for an additional, more extensive, mammogram. This has happened several times before because the normal screening just does not provide a clear enough view. The day before the flood we drove to the appointment in Indianapolis for the additional exam. This time they called us back into a consultation room after reading the test results. They saw an abnormality and wanted to do a biopsy. They assured us that 85-90% of these type of abnormalities were benign. We were both concerned about this but Rudee wanted to keep it to ourselves, "no need worrying people when there is only a 10% chance of it turning out bad".
Monday was the day for the biopsy and it went very well. The tests results on the removed tissue would take 2-3 days to return, again they kept emphasizing that 85-90% of the time nothing was found but we were still uneasy. We anxiously waited for Wednesday to come so we could actually start planning our trip west except that no word came on Wednesday, and we could not get an answer Thursday either. First thing this morning Rudee did get in touch with the right person and her results were in. Breast cancer! :-o The words hit us like a two by four to the forehead!
We are both two very scared people right now.The cancer was caught very, very early, in fact they are calling it "stage 0" and her prognosis is extremely positive. We have an appointment with the oncologist Monday morning to schedule surgery and lay out a game plane for her treatment.
In the meantime, we have talked to our boss in South Dakota and she is very supportive. We may still be able to work there, arriving later then planned, but it all depends on Rudee's length of treatment. We were both really looking forward to working at Mt. Rushmore and are disappointed things are not working out for us to do that like we planned.
Rather then just sitting around I may be able to pick up some "diesel fuel money" working for the local Ag supplier here. Our son in law, Ryan, works there. He talked to the boss and they may be able to use me some this spring to drive a truck delivering product to the guys using the sprayers and spreaders in the field. They are well aware of our situation and are willing to work with me on scheduling and availability.

In other news, both the cargo trailer and the motorcycle have been "officially" totaled by their respective insurance companies. We are still waiting for the offers on both but are hoping we can get them settled by this time next week. I'll keep you posted.


  1. So sorry to hear about Rudee's diagnosis but hopefully the early detection will result in treatment with great results. You guys are in our thoughts and prayers.

  2. Wow, you guys just can't catch a break, can you. But the fact that they caught Rudee's breast cancer early early, it is so encouraging. We got hit in September of 2010 (right after Terry's heart failure and new ICD replacement) with Terry's prostate cancer. He was so hit with it all especially after the heart problems. We knew it was too cold for us at that date to stay in Indiana for the winter for treatment, so we went to visit our son in Florida and regroup. We made the decision to go to Houston to MD Anderson and we were able to get him treatment there. He chose radiation because of his weak heart and not being able to do the DaVinci surgery. It's been two years now and in March he was released by his oncologist. Life is still good. The only down side is that I have learned what panic attacks are. LOL For that I've learned to meditate a bit and enjoy the occasional glass of wine. The most important thing you can do for Rudee is support her and be there for her, which I know you will do. Fulltimers tend to be that way. We are certainly praying for you both and know that the treatment at this stage will be 100% effective.

    Good news on the bike and trailer insurance. . . if there could be a good outcome to that situation, that was it. Our beautiful Wellcraft boat sank in Dale Hollow last June and our insurance company (Erie) kissed us off with NOTHING after paying for full coverage for 25 years.

    Take care and know that your fellow RV'ers and keeping you both close in mind and spirit and even if we don't see each other regularly, you are never far from our thoughts.


  3. Rudee,

    I am so very sorry to hear of your diagnosis. That being said, the VERY good news is that you've caught it early! You've joined a sisterhood that no one wants to be a part of and one of which I am, too. Stage 0 is superb in the cancer world!

    My breast cancer was discovered on my very first mammogram 12 years ago. I underwent lumpectomy, a several-week course of radiation and then tamoxifen for 5 years.

    I also was initially given similar percentages and told it was likely "nothing." Yeah, well, statistics go out the window when you hear the words, "I'm sorry, but you have cancer."

    You are so fortunate to have Phil by your side. A supportive, caring, loving partner is such a blessing and one I did not have during my breast cancer experience.

    No matter what type of cancer or what treatment course, every survivor (and that's what you are as soon as you are diagnosed!) goes through different emotional stages. There's fear, denial, anger and ultimately becoming strong to fight. Go with the flow; there are no "right" or "wrong" feelings and no "right" or "wrong" treatment decisions. You do what is best for you in the overall picture.

    Learn what you can about your cancer. What it is, treatment options and whatever you can. You will know your adversary and how to overcome it. Don't be reluctant to ask questions of your healthcare providers. Rally the troops for support, as you have done in this blog post. We're right beside you even if we're miles away.

    Survivors who have "been there, done that" can be a tremendous source of support, tips, knowledge and resources. Use us. Lean on us. Your sisters are more than willing to share.

    Remember that you are NOT alone. Remember that you CAN do this. As ugly as a cancer experience can be, there are also moments of absolute joy and beauty on this path you are now walking. If you read my blog from last Summer, you know I am now a 2-time survivor (different cancer last year). I've seen the rough side of cancer and the blessings that are bestowed from the experience.

    Please do not hesitate to contact me privately should you need to talk. You can use the Kontactr form on my blog to send me a message. If you include your email, I can respond. I'll be happy to give you my email and phone number.

    Gentle hugs and love to you both . . .

  4. Oh Rudee! I'm so sorry to hear about all of this. I'm glad that it was caught early. Know that you and Jim are both in our prayers.

  5. This is a rotten deal, no doubt about it. Do your research, I hear that breast cancer is one that is very treatable and that outcomes, especially this early, are terrific. I have several friends that will attest to that fact!

    You will both be in our prayers.

  6. Okay enough is enough! You two have been through enough already. We have never met but I know Rudee is one strong woman and will overcome this. Rudee you will be in our prayers.

  7. Thinking of you and praying for a positive outcome. These medical issues hit you right out of the blue. Its good to be near family when it does.

  8. Oh my, we are so sorry all this is happening. We will keep you in our thoughts and prayers. We are also sending you both a big cyber hug. () ().

  9. Don't know what to say except that you are in our thoughts. Wishing you the best.