Friday, February 10, 2017

Day ~445: The 18 month update!!

It is hard to believe I have been back to work for 13 months. Recovery has lasted the full 18 months and in my opinion it continues.

My oncologist officially released me from her care in January 2017. She is so happy I did this, I was her first autoimmune patient that had a bone marrow treatment. She has been watching bone marrow transplants saved the lives of cancer patients for over a decade.

My neurologist, was never told about my decision to do this treatment, until six months after I did it. Just had my 17 month check up with him. He is blown away and in his own words: "is convinced that the treatment works".

Been cane free for a while now, can't say I miss that life. I owe so much gratitude to my physical therapist, occupational therapist and especially my personal trainer at the gym. Even when I was released from therapy my trainer really helped me work on balance, gait training, increasing my strength and mostly increasing my confidence in myself. Erik! I know you're reading this. Thank you.

It's been nice to get back to work and use my brain in a creative and useful way. Things are crazy busy as usual, but it beats sitting at home thinking about limitations and what I wish I could be doing.

There is a lot of credit due to my tribe. Without my friends and family, who have stood by my side and been the best support system on planet Earth, I don't know that I would have recovered so well.

My beau Chad has also been there from the beginning: diagnosis day. He never wavered, never showed stress, and never had any doubts that I would get better. But even if I hadn't improved; I know he would still be by my side.

The stomach issues that kept sending me to the ER (GERD attacks) seem to have finally subsided. I did catch what I thought was a cold back in December, and it turned out to be walking pneumonia. That took several weeks to recover from and was not fun at all. I do not recommend catching it- lol.

I now enjoy long hikes with my beau, we have some great reservoirs in the area that we get to spend a few hours exploring. Getting lots of friend time at the gym between steam rooms and spin classes.

While I am not 100%, I am also accepting of the fact that I may never be. But I'm 90% better than I was when I had a cane, infusions every two weeks, and fatigue that literally had me printing disability paperwork.

I continue to be an administrator for several support groups on Facebook and elsewhere. Paying it forward is something that I enjoy because I am so grateful to the mentors that I had through the process.

My favorite non-transplant group is my GBS/CIDP exercisers group. We encourage them with coping skills, motivate them to keep moving and building their strength, and help connect them with doctors that specialize in these diseases. This group brings a lot of joy to my heart, laughter to my soul.

My gratitude is through the roof. I count my blessings and wanted to thank all of you for your love and support and being the amazing people that I choose to have in my life.