I normally only write posts on weekdays and take the weekends off, but I thought I’d make an exception today.

Yesterday’s post was a bit of a downer. I get a little bummed out when I hear of such things happening to young children like Kay. Like the subtitle of my blog says …”mostly upbeat and sometimes downbeat…”.

I want this blog to be as honest as possible and yesterday was no exception. But I hope I didn’t bring anyone down who might be depending on Him right now.

Maybe my disclaimer (see link above) should apply here as well. Don’t let my struggles have an effect on your relationship with God.

I’m not apologizing for yesterday’s post. It’s an honest statement of where I’m at. I just want to be sure those of you trusting in God, as I did most of my life, won’t let my last post shake you.

Your beliefs are probably right anyway. I’m just not there right now.

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kay

I came across Kay’s Leukemia Blog yesterday that a family had been keeping about their little girl’s progress. There was one last post. Kay, their beautiful 9 year-old daughter died from Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL).

She first contracted it when she was 22 months old.

I’m 61 years old and have CLL – a much milder form of leukemia.

So why her? Why a child who had so many years ahead of her? And why ALL?

My Leuk has many brothers a lot meaner than him.  “Acute” versions are so deadly. So threatening.

Why must his more aggressive brothers attack children? Where’s the sense in it?

Why does God allow such a thing. Or maybe the real question should be is there a God at all?

Are we just dust in the wind, our lives blown away by an unknowing, unthinking gale?

So why this little girl? The standard answer is that God has his plan and we can’t always understand it. He is so Omnipotent, so All-knowing, that we must believe He knows what He is doing. There are things we can’t possibly understand so we must have faith in Him.

Or are we just letting Him off the hook with all that? Do we dare ask why, and in doing so lose our faith, our beliefs? It is said that living without God is like a ship without a rudder; we are blown by the wind with no ability to steer against it.

Maybe there never was a rudder. Maybe the wind is blowing us haphazardly and we just keep trimming the sails thinking He is guiding us; when all the while only the wind determines our course.

Where is He in all this? Where was He for little Kay?

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I recently attended a nutrition class for cancer patients and thought I’d share what I learned. This will be the first of several posts that will show up from time to time. Remember, you need to see your doctor/nutritionist before doing any of this. (See my Disclaimer page.)

I’m not at the treatment stage yet, but I hear it sometimes comes with lots of fun side effects such as loss of appetite; sore or dry mouth; painful swallowing; changes in taste or smell; nausea or vomiting; and diarrhea or constipation.

Lots to look forward too!

Apparently, though, not all chemo treatments cause nausea, etc. Good idea to chat with your doctor about the various options.

Anywho… here’s some ideas given at the class on how to prevent or lessen those problems:

Loss of Appetite

  • Recognize that food is a necessary and valuable part of therapy (think of it as medicine)
  • Select high calorie/high protein foods
  • Include fresh air and some physical activity daily (this really helps increase appetite)
  • Make mealtimes pleasant
  • Eat with family or friends
  • Eat favorite or well tolerated foods

Nausea and Vomiting:

  • Eat slowly and chew food thoroughly
  • Take small portions at mealtime
  • Try dry foods like toast, crackers, pretzels
  • Avoid greasy or fried foods
  • Avoid foods with strong odors
  • Slowly sip or drink liquids throughout the day
  • Don’t force yourself to eat
  • Rest after meals

Diarrhea:

  • Drink plenty of liquids
  • Gradually add low roughage foods
  • Avoid greasy or fried foods
  • Eat small frequent meals
  • Avoid high fiber foods
  • Limit beverages that contain caffeine
  • Limit milk and milk products

Sore or Dry Mouth (sometimes chemo can cause painful mouth sores)

  • Try soft, cold foods such as ice cream, popsicles, watermelon, and frozen grapes
  • Avoid spicy or acidic foods
  • Use a food processor or blender to puree food
  • Add sauces and gravies to food
  • Eat sugar free candy or chew gum
  • Drink plenty of water
  • Biotin is helpful
  • Try making a baking soda mouthwash

I’ll be posting more ideas on nutrition and how to prepare for this ongoing battle with Leuk. In the mean time, for those of us who are anticipating chemo but haven’t experienced it yet, I think it’s best to be prepared.

If any of you out there already have experience with chemo, please post a comment to enlighten us newbies.

Whatever chemo involves, my doctor says to definitely have it. Don’t put it off – when your doctor says it’s time, do it. Don’t let Leuk get the best of you without a fight.

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Having a good day today. Only slight dizziness that went away this afternoon. It is probably not caused by Leuk, but it is one of the side effects he likes to lay on ya.

I’m still not having to do chemo, but I feel the time is near. White blood cell count continues to rise. I’m having blood tests in a few weeks so we’ll see. Other than being tired, I’m feeling good.

It’s odd trying to explain to people who don’t have leukemia what my life is like. It is definitely a surprise at first (to say the least!), but soon becomes a part of your life. Although you’d prefer that Leuk leave, at some point he moves into the extra bedroom and you get used to having him around. I just wish he’d quit raiding my fridge, drinking my beer, and hoarding the remote.

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Hi new readers. If you’re dealing with this turkey named Leuk, you need to know you’re not alone. I have CLL type leukemia which I’m told stands for Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia. But I think it stands for Could’a Lived Longer!

This is a mostly upbeat blog of my life with Leuk. Not all entries are about me and Leuk. Some are just personal entries about my day with no mention of him. We can, after all, have normal parts to our life too.

So let’s have a laugh or two at his expense while we poke him in the eye and tell him to take a hike. Leuk, beware, my readers and I have it in for you.

If you don’t have leukemia but know someone who does, please send them here at www.meandleuk.com

PS – If you have CLL, you might want to see this entry http://www.meandleuk.com/worries-part-iii-how-long-do-i-have/

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