Monday, November 5, 2012

thankful, to say the least.

this first photo means a lot to me, it wasn't taken for the website but just for me personally. being held up by friends, family and community; a perfect visual of what you all have been for me (p.s. those bulges on my arms are some of my nasty tumors). some of the other photos you will see on the website...go check it out! oh and that black and white one of me and my man is just for me too. =)

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Hey guys! Guess what? One of the local news stations around town did an interview on me for an update on my health but also for Tumor Hater inc! So exciting. I am so thankful for the support that I have through my community for my own condition and also for Tumor Hater inc! Click here to watch that interview! SUPER EXCITING!!!
Oh ALSO, Tumor Hater's website photo shoot by visualize photography is now up! Click here to check out all of the amazing work that this company did for free. Keep up to date with their work on facebook and like their company page here.
If you missed it before the company that did my website, my tee shirts, and business cards for FREEE is forte creative, website here, facebook page here.
These companies did not do this to get recognized...but I really want you to recognize them. They deserve it. They deserve to be loved on like they have loved on me. Go to their page and show them some love. If you are a local company that needs help or a family needing pictures do business with THEM. They have my complete approval! =)
I have been so blown away by so many people around town donating their time and services for me and Tumor Hater inc. Proving again how powerful community is. Thank you every one who has helped me and for all who keep up with Tumor Hater inc and my condition. I really mean that from the bottom of my heart. I wish I could properly convey how much you all have done for me. Ya'll love on me so well. You give me courage to fight and help me not lose hope in my future. You believe in me, and not only have you stood behind me as I face my own tumors; but now you are standing with me as a fellow fighter as we begin to face tumors nation wide. That is huge. It brings me to tears. Your love and support has been a constant reminder that my pain has a value and purpose....if I allow it.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Yahoo Shine

i was nominated to win $10,000 through a competition online. its called 'women who shine'. i am totally honored that i would even be thought of as a woman who shines, let alone being nominated to win some prize for it. i have been reading up on some of the other nominee's and i am so inspired by their stories. it is so cool that there are so many people out there who have fought a good fight yet still remain positive. or who give there time and heart despite their own situations. who love others, just because that is who they are. it is pretty mind blowing to see my story amongst theirs.

to my understanding this is how it works: there are 8 categories. i was placed in the 'activist' category. their will be 8 winners (probably 1 from each category) first place wins 10,000 and the other 7 get their story published (in a magazine i think). i think this is an incredible opportunity for me. of COURSE winning 10,000 would be incredible. but you know what id do with that money? id pay for my upcoming MRI's that i need to have done. i now have no insurance and no job. soooo. pretty hurting for some money. i have applied for disability through my old job (still waiting to hear back from them) and i applied through social security. i was denied from them...but i have written an appeal and i am HOPING that i get it. cuz THEN i can get on the oregon health plan (medical insurance). and Man oh Pete do i need that!! not only would it be cool to win some money, but it would also be incredible to get my story written and get word out about my non profit. i really do want to help hundreds, wait who am i kidding? i want to help thousands of people. i want to see the world decorated in tumor hater gear. i really don't think that's too much to ask =) so the more the word is spread about tumor hater inc. the better!!

i am not saying that i deserve to win. not in the slightest. but i am asking for you to vote. for me, and/or for another deserving person. check out the other nominee's. these ladies are incredible. be inspired and SHINE!
click here to vote for me. thank you!

and guess what?? the website for tumor hater has been launched!! click here to check it out! i am stoked outta my mind for everything that is to come!!
in other news;
check out my you tube channel here, i have added a few more videos. i am hoping that Ellen will somehow hear of my story and have me on her show. it would be a dream come true if she helped me launch this non profit! so if you want to share the videos with your family and friends and everyone else in the world, please do!! i would LOVE that!
and i know this is random the cutest funniest cat alive here...Maru the cat has his own YouTube channel and makes me cry laughing so hard. feel free to go through that whole channel. i hope it makes you as happy as it makes me. i LOVE that cat.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

tumor hater and an 'i love ellen' rant

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Pics and STUFF
1) i have a YouTube channel, here is my first video...filming thanks to my friends Winstin Tao and Jo & Andy Evins, editing thanks to Gordon Casey. 2) me and my couch named Ellen, just hanging out and having awesome chats. 3&4) just dreaming of being on Ellen's season 10. 5) a community of hero's at the website photo shoot for Tumor Hater inc. 6) hangin with the cutest haters around. 7) i hate so hard.

so.......i love Ellen.
how could one not? i even sort of named my couch 'Ellen' because its a dream of mine to sit and have a cup of tea with her. and now i get to whenever i want. though surely it isn't the same, its just the closest i may ever get. anyways...Ellen...she has the best heart ever and is 'a complete supporter of the underdog' as Patrick Dempsey said as he made a toast to her on her season 10 premier week. 
she is incredibly inspiring and has been responsible for a majority of my laughter and smiles during the recovery of my most recent surgery in late March. honestly, her smile, her dancing, her glow lit up my room while i laid there unable to do very much for the first few months. the thing is, i'm sure you know what i'm talking about. chances are she has brightened your day too. i know i'm not alone. and that is just about the coolest thing. that she has THAT effect on everyone. although she doesn't know me, she has helped me heal. she has helped me laugh in the midst of so much pain. she has given me more drive to reach out and help other people despite my tumors and pain. though i may be 'recovered' from that surgery in march, i still live in a body covered in tumors that seek to hinder me, my passion, my joy and LIFE.
watching Ellen, is just one of the things that honestly helps me to not give my tumors a fighting chance. i can NOT lose. i refuse. she daily reminds me how amazing it is to help other people, to smile, to dance and to LOVE always. watch her show and look what can happen when just one person extends a helping hand! tumor hater inc will do that for others. that makes me giddy. i also want to inspire and encourage others to love themselves for who they are. as is.
starting this non profit, i honestly feel like i must be crazy. but at the same time, nothing has felt more right. it would be a dreamy dream come true if Ellen helped Tumor Hater inc. if she could help spread the word,  anything. even just SAY 'tumor hater' would probably make my heart fall out my butt.
do you want to help this dream come true? not only would it just be rad to meet her, it would be...hmmm...insaine(?) incredible(?) freaking awesome(?) to have her stand behind tumor hater inc and what we believe. at tumor hater inc we believe in the importance of community coming alongside those in need to help them with the tumor-ey obstacles life can bring by providing financial assistance and emotional support.
share this video. share this post. share tumor hater's faceboook page. share share share. Ellen has multiple ways to be contacted. twitter, facebook, her website. she also has staff that you can contact, like jeannie, amy and andy! whether this reaches Ellen or not, the more people that know about Tumor Hater inc the more people can be helped. please help spread the word. spread the love, spread the hate.
Tumor Hater inc's website is almost ready, until then visit and 'like' our face book page!
also, if you are interested in getting your hate on, 'tumor hater' style and you have a is how you can get yourself some tumor hater gear...(obviously once the website is up, you can order from there, but until then, if you are interested...)
log on to your PayPal account
click 'send money'
enter into the address box
in the amount box, add up your shirt costs and enter it in. please add 5 dollars to help with shipping.
infant:                                   toddler:                                youth:
6 months-  $12                     2t-        $12                        small-      $15
12 months-$12                     3t-        $12                        medium-  $15
                                            4t-        $12                        large-       $15

women's:                             mens:
xsmall-     $20                      small-     $20
small-       $20                      medium- $20
medium-   $20                      large-     $20
large-       $20                      xlarge-    $20
xlarge-     $20                      xxlarge-  $20
xxlarge-   $20

in the details, write in what shirts you need and include the address where you want it to go.
and TA-DA!
you did it! i am pretty dang prompt on getting orders out too. AND id LOVE to see you in your shirt! send a picture of you getting your fierce on, your warrior face...your hater get the idea to and i will post it on tumor haters facebook page!

i am hoping to raise a nice chunk of money to be able to cut someone a check by thanksgiving. lets do this guys!

P.S. The PayPal/donate button on THIS blog is NOT, i repeat IS NOT for tumor hater inc. the PayPal on the left side of your screen is to help pay for my own medical bills.

thank you every one for your support and for all of your love. i am SERIOUSLY blown away by all of you guys. not only have i been incredibly supported with my own tumor-ey adventure, you guys have also supported this non profit endeavor of mine and i am forever grateful!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

it is well

1) LOVE this song... 2) got my business cards!! thank you Forte creative for doing such an amazing job on them!! 3) being intimidating... get yo tickets ya'll.

when things are going well, we seem to dismiss the Lords presence in it, when things are hard, we ask "why have you forsaken me Lord?" in either scenario, we are not recognizing the true presence of the Lord.
when things are hard, it is so challenging to look past what is so easily seen, to feel past what is so easily felt. the hard. the pain. the hurt. the tears. but what i have found, is that looking past my pain and brokenness is the only way of survival. the only way to escape depression and a life wrapped in self pity and self centered-ness, which i don't believe is truly LIVING. when i look past 'why ME?' i am set free. i am free and i am welcomed to go after a life that has no limits or boundaries.
i know that i wasn't born to serve myself. so everything that happens to me (whether it brings smiles or tears) i must believe that it has only happened in order for it to help me reach my fullest potential and reach and inspire more people. but i must set aside this "life" that i feel like i have some sort of right to. you know, a life that's easy to smile through. the life of that one person that you sort of envy, cuz they just seem to have butterflies and rainbows follow them. i don't know if i will ever be able to let those desires go. but what has proven to be true every single time, is that when i start off my day with a 'why me' i can so quickly be overcome with depression. and on the contrary, when i feel a spasm, or my legs starts to throb from the numbness whatever the case may be. when i don't think of ME, when my heart opens and i hear God in it, and what He has to tell me through it, i feel so strong. the pain doesn't depress me, it is STILL there...but when my mind changes from 'why me' to 'whatever your will Lord' my heart changes from 'victim' to 'victor'.
lately, the tumors in my sciatic nerves are starting to cause my legs to get weaker and weaker. the pain is all the way from my hips to my ankles. throbbing, numbness, burning, sharp stabbing pains. im getting it all. a couple of days ago i was having one of the worst pain days EVER. no joke. i was driving home cutting a day of errands short because i was beginning to get dizzy every time my legs would spasm (i actually was only able to get one errand done). this pain felt like a shock of electricity running down my legs, it was nuts. despite this pain i went to the grocery store to get a couple items, i didn't want to be completely useless because of the pain, besides, i only needed 3 items. arriving at the grocery store i grabbed a cart and took extremely short and slow steps the whole time. i was glared at and was flashed numerous confused faces. well, probably because i was talking to myself. truth be told. i was talking to my tumors. i told them that i hate them. that they do not have victory in my life and they never will. that they will not weaken my passion. every time the pain bolted down my legs i said 'right NOW victory is mine, its already mine, you wont tear me down' it was a constant conversation the whole time at the store. i felt silly doing it but it was necessary to grab hold of my thoughts and to claim victory in my life during that time of feeling completely weak and helpless in my body. i took hold and control of the only thing i could, my thoughts. i know i must have looked like a bit of a freak but it was an extremely powerful moment for me. for the rest of the day, instead of feeling powerless over my tumors, i felt like i conquered them. i had victory in their greatest power over me; my hope. that is all that matters anyway. more than zero tumors. more than pain free, i want hope.
when i have hope, i have joy. when i have hope, i have peace. when i have hope, i have passion. therefore, when i have hope...i have victory. i trust the Lord enough to know, without any reservation that He is good. as i focus on His goodness and trust Him, i have an empowering hope for my future. my worries fade, and it is well. whatever comes my way, it is well in my soul.

when peace, like a river, attendeth my way,
when sorrows like sea billows roll;
whatever my lot, Thou has taught me to say,
it is well, it is well, with my soul.

Friday, August 24, 2012


pic 1) my new tee shirts!! i love them sooo much. huge logo on front, website down the side with logo and name on the back...oh yea, and they even have the trademark symbol now!! yahooooo!! thank you to forte creative for being amazing designers and an amazing company! pic 2) my 'display' at my parents house this weekend and...pic 3)...rudy mc.booty and i sell sell sellin away. pic 4) my favorite...opportunities like these will make all my pain worth it.
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this past weekend i set up shop at my house to sell tumor hater tee's and oh my goodness! so exciting how many shirts have sold. over 40 shirts you guys. in only 2 weeks! it really is incredible to watch this non profit, this dream, come together. yes, the website isn't up yet and i am learning things as i go... but i'm going. i'm doing it. i am so so excited to do more but only time will get me there and i am literally just soaking in every moment of these beginning stages.
now unable to work and "disabled", this life is showing me just how 'able' i areas that only require passion to get there. i feared the label of 'disabled' but really, its just a word. i will decide what i do with my life, not that silly word. yes, i may be limited in certain areas. but i also am finding that where your passions are, we have the potential to be limitless.
some say that (with over a thousand tumors) i have over a thousand reasons to be angry, and i see what they are saying. but i must fight against that mindset and instead see that i have over a thousand reasons to embrace the hurting. love the weak and have compassion on those that feel like they cant go on. tumor hater inc is going to make that possible. tumor hater was developed upon my pain and tumors and it is now the reason i have hope every morning.
people tell me how positive they think i am. and as much as id like to just be like 'yea your right, i've got it all together. this tumor-ey pain filled life is a piece of cake', i've said it before, my attitude of course, is not always hunky dory positive. i'm like a crazy roller coaster of emotions all the time. just ask my poor poor boyfriend. i've never cried this much in my life and these passed 9 months i have probably gone through more changes than when i was in my mothers womb. these changes are keeping me on my toes. i cant keep up with my life. but something that remains, something that doesn't change is the Lord. He is always good, and since He is always good, i know my tumors can be used for something good. and in order to see that 'good', i must not make my tumors and my pain about me. i must look to see my life in the perspective that God has on it. oh it is hard. its hard to set myself aside and look at my life from an outsiders perspective. its hard to resist getting on the floor flailing around in tears. throwing fists up to God yelling "WHY?!" oh i've been there before and there is NOTHING wrong with crying. but i refuse to let my tumors win. i refuse to be depressed. and not only do i have the will to live but i greatly desire to reach my fullest potential, and i'm not going to get there by throwing pity parties. so as long as i'm here. as long as this is my life... i am going to need to make the best of it. sure i will have bad days, its just all about re-gaining the perspective that gets you back on your feet again.

"God gives beauty for ashes
strength for fear
gladness for mourning
peace for despair"

part of one of my all time favorite songs EVER.

i believe God inspired tumor hater within me so i could inspire others.
he changed my heart towards this battle, this pain, this fear.
join me.
turn your pain into something beautiful. 

Friday, August 10, 2012


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pic 1) so for times that i hurt way too bad to get around but i don't want my pain to limit my social life, i got a wheel chair to help me out. though it has no head rest, it is better than walking! pic 2) i have a problem with taking pills, they terrify me. addiction terrifies me. but, i sort of have to take pills now to have a day where im not staying in bed. so im trying out an extended release morphine pill. only on day two but so far so good. pic 3) a friend set up this fundraising account for me through this indiegogo website, super sweet. he didn't even tell me about it either until after he was done. i am super thankful for his heart, and for all of those that have donated. i made a video for it too! a youtube feels funny to see me on there. but check it out! for those of you who know me from years ago, you will be able to hear the difference in my voice now. ugh, i hate my voice so bad. i MISS my vocal cords. 

here's just a bit of an update...

on july 31st i was supposed to be headed back into my job. ready and able to work. unfortunatly tumors suck.

when people ask me how i am feeling and healing up, i don't exactly know the best way to answer them. yes, my incision is healing from where they removed the 'creeper' in march. but there are so many things that are worse than ever before. there was also quite a significant amount of nerve damage from the surgery that i struggle with daily. my right shoulder is challenging me to deal with a new feeling of pain. it feels like a burning hot needle sliding around in the muscles in my shoulder. its a WIERD feeling. very unpleasant. i also have another new pain. its in the front right side of my neck when i talk. physical therapist is telling my that my only working vocal cord (the right one) has grown so weak from the tumors that are on it that it's basically using all the muscles in the front of my neck for power. so now most of the time when i am talking, my neck is spasming. it even sometimes spasms in the back of the neck?! praying the right vocal cord last years and years longer...or else...i will eventually need a tracheotomy to help me breath and speak. what joy, huh?!
not to be totally depressing but, my pain continued:
i also still cant lean forward without a ton of pain. getting shoes out of my closet, getting dressed, bending down, reaching forward, out to the side. standing at the kitchen counter to cook...cant do it. and this doesnt just cause neck and shoulder pain, my whole body is getting worse. my spine, my hips, my sciatic nerves, my feet, my arms. its really every where. the most annoying of all my pain is that i cant even sit comfortably in a chair any more. i need head support, to be reclined and even better, have some sort of foot rest. it seems the tumors that are on every level of my spine are being compressed too much when in the standing but most significantly the seated possition. making laying down the most 'comfortable'.

well, clearly this is not an adequate body to be of benefit at my job. although my surgeon wrote a note on june 8th that i could return to work july body just isn't making that possible, and our employee health nurse didn't even approve me to come back anyways.

so, i have applied for disability and i hope that i hear back soon because i haven't worked since february! so please, cross those fingers, and legs, and arms, and toes...and of course PRAY that i get approved the first time around. and THEN i will be able to be on the Oregon Health plan for medical insurance and i could also start receiving financial help for the cost of living.

today is the official day that my job is terminated . (i cant help but think of arnold schwarzenegger when saying that). 'i've been TERMINATED'. sort of a sucky feeling. but i know that i know that i know God has allowed this all to happen and i am in His hands.

sorry for the boring post. i just wanted to update you guys on my "recovery" and my job situation. there will be more to come on my feelings behind 'disabled'.

Friday, August 3, 2012

defining me


this is something that i have been contemplating for a long time. never been too sure just how to go about expressing these thoughts though. so please bare with me as i try not to struggle through explaining this new (to me) concept.

while being consoled, has anyone ever said "yes, but dont let this define you". well, ive heard that time and time again. and my response was usually "i know...i wont." and i stood strong in believing that was a good standard to live by. i didnt want to be taken down by something. i wanted to be strong and not allow my tumors to make me weak. but they did. but what i was not realizing is that they also gave me my greatest strength. if i completely step back and take a look at the effects that my tumors have caused me in a very broad perspective, i will see challenges, pain, tears and anger; but i also see strength, perspective, courage and humility. why when considering how something defines us must we focus on the negative aspect of it?

replace the word "tumors" with whatever you are going through. who says that your word has to define you in a negative way? look at who it has brought you to be today. look at the perspective it has given you that youd never be able to have with out it.

my tumors don't come along with a life sentence of sorrow unless i choose to allow that. sure i struggle. but i refuse to allow my pain to be in vain, so i choose to make them into more than just my struggle. my tumors have brought out my greatest strength, compassions, my heart and everything that i dream to become. because of my tumors i am strong. because of my tumors i have courage. because of my tumors i can feel Gods hands holding me up. literally only walking by his grace. which translates into every aspect of my life, i am what i am only by his permission.

'Kelly Anne Sullivan' defined is 'black eyed warrior woman with grace'. my tumors, my sisters death, and other life challenges has made this definition true. so yes, the hard stuff in my life has defined me. but NOT into a sorrow filled, angry, pessimist. instead they have defined me into this black eyed warrior woman with grace. 

Monday, July 9, 2012

my haters are my motivators

pictures! i love pictures...
1) its NOI and i! my super hero side kick. so thankful for her love and thankful for her hater-ness. 2) some amazing chicas in my life showin me some more love after my fundraiser. 3) my precious addikins. 4) some powerful haters in my life. my mom and aunt. these ladies hatin on my tumors is fierce. 5) love this woman. she inspired me to speak at my fundraiser. forever grateful. 6) my first time ever speaking. that chair, is where i am meant to be. cant wait to speak again. 7) the starbucks i go to, is absolutely the best. these guys hate hard. 8) SOO blessed by my church. i received such a sweet surprise this weekend. a gift basket full of love. i could never have imagined a church like this one. so blessed.
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sometimes its ok to be a hater.
especially when you're a tumor hater.
i have been so insanely blessed this past month by all of you out there who are supporting me. this support comes in so many different forms. but the most important is you guys just bein a 'hater' of my tumors. you 'haters' are my motivators. im loving you all.
we did a fundraiser a couple weeks ago for my medical bills that was so successful. i am so beyond grateful for everybody that was a part of that. i had some incredible donations for the silent auction thanks to the help of my amazing friends Stephanie, Tami, Sue and Carl, Justin and my Aunt Lori and SOOO many others. we had around 100 people all gathered together in a church building to dine on some fine italian cookin while being serenaded by the lovely voices of my friends Alex and Zoe. i feel very encouraged, i feel renewed, i feel inspired. this recovery has taken so much out of me. all of this new pain is exhausting and is wearing on me emotionally. but being a part of an event that was based off of so much for me! for me?! crazy. it was an indescribable feeling. i really cant even put it into words. 
and guess what i did? i sat in front of everybody and i SPOKE. i am terrified of public speaking. but i did it! and it felt right. it felt like i was living my calling. it was surreal. it was just what i needed. i needed to know that i can do that. i needed to know that i can speak in front of others and put together a fundraiser. it confirmed to me THAT is exactly what i was made to do with my life through tumor hater inc. i am now more certain of my calling than ever before.
lately i have been working A TON on tumor hater inc. website is being worked on, came up with a logo, ordered new tee shirts, designing business cards, its so super awesome to see and have this all come together. people always say 'chase after your dreams" but honestly, as you start to chase after your dreams, you realize it isn't a 'chase'. its already there for you, you just have to....start.
i have such a difficult time not allowing fear to control me. my doubt ties my hands behind my back. it blinds me. starting this non profit is a dream. a dream that i almost didn't allow to happen because of self doubt that was wrapped in my inadequacies. as i signed paper work as 'president' of tumor hater inc. i thought i must be crazy and pulling my own leg to think that id actually be capable of doing something like this. i almost didn't follow through on it because looking at the future terrifies me. how will i ever get "there" i thought. but when i stopped focusing on my fears with the future and my inadequacies and only looked at the journey in today, one task at a time, my fears slipped away. i can do this today and that's all i need. that is all we have anyways. the same goes for my fears in regards to my tumors. when i focus on the difficult places that my tumors may take me, i crumble and my strength is destroyed. God has promised strength for the day. so i choose to live where i have His strength.
let me encourage you to just take one step at a time and embrace the strength that is available to you todaylet go of tomorrow. live in today. believe in yourself for today

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

"Super Tumor Hater"

photo montage of my new day job. BAM BOOM POW. watch out all you tumors across the lands, i'm out to get you....
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lately i have been experiencing a tremendous amount of pain. more pain than i have ever felt before. it seems as though i cant do anything anymore or be in any position that relieves my pain. so frustrating. physical pain has been causing me emotional pain and despair. not an easy combo to handle.
at church the other week, i opted to take the stairs rather than the elevator. as i approached them in a hobble (when in pain i walk like i'm 120 years old) and wearing my neck brace. a man looked at me and said, "no elevator this time huh" i said "no, i think i wanna try the stairs. i think i can do it." and then with so much wisdom wrapped around these words he said. "you know, you don't always have to be the hero." i nodded, he sort of left me speechless. i continued down the stairs replaying those words over and over in my head.
it is surprising to me how many times that i actually do things because i think i have to in order to be this 'strong person' that people think i am.
i pray for strength and courage because i feel like i have to handle my NF perfectly. because God allowed this to happen. because with His strength or without it is the difference between life and death to me. i often lose sight that because i am only human, i can only be so strong, smile through pain only so much. but the man at church is right, i don't always have to be the hero. its simply impossible.
i go back and forth with my emotions towards pain and my lack of control daily, even hourly. my weaknesses are so evident. i cant hide from my tumors and my pain. my pride is slapped down when i try to go throughout a day without God getting me through. i must cling to Him for every moment.
i am going to be at battle against my tumors for the rest of my life, but knowing that i will be in the Lords hands through it all...reveals to me that i am going to be ok. i will have victory. maybe i don't always have to be 'the hero' but remembering that victory will be mine in the end sure makes me feel like one.
also, super hero's have cool outfits. sometimes i will lose perspective and struggle with my fears so i decided to make myself a super hero cape. i figure that whenever i put it on, i will be reminded of my strength and i will feel victorious. what could these little jerk tumors have on me when God is with me?
and guess what? when i strapped that cape on, i honestly felt like i could do some serious damage. it is safe to say that pretending i am a mighty destroyer of all tumors is now my new favorite hobby. wait, who am i kidding. i'm not pretending, i actually AM a super hero. Super Tumor Hater that is... batman and spiderman say hi.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

the overflow

another overlaod of pictures. SO MUCH TIME TO MAKE UP WITH PICTURES!!
1) some of my loverly friends that came to visit me! i love them so much!! 2) what a wonderful night i had with my bestest friend Noi. we stayed up till after 2am talking, laughing and...crying. 3) My first hug from Noi after surgery. 4) feeling completely adventurous with my friend addi at my first concert ever, COLDPLAY! this concert would NOT have been doable without my oversized wheel chair. 5) out to dinner with amanda and her fam bam. 6) one of amamnda's precious little girls. this girls love is sweetness to my soul. 7) first time poker champ at family poker night! i give all credit to the titanium/terminator side of me. 8) me seizing the day. this was right before my cape came out and i flew around the city fighting tumors. 9) what a special friend i have in tami. this girls visits brought me coffee, laughter, princess balloons, mad libs and a felt coloring poster! what could be better? 10) what do we have here? my sweet aunt hand crafted me a bobble head! i am a bobble head?!
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so remember in my last post how i said that i nearly died? well this isn't my first near death experience...

in high school my brother and i got in a really bad car accident on our way to a track meet. we hit black ice coming down a very steep and curvy road. we flipped upside down and slid all the way down the hill and somehow avoided sliding off the cliff. the paramedics were telling us that the wrecks they see like ours, do not come with surviving passengers. they were calling us "lucky" but i saw it different. you see, before the wreck happened. before we even left our house, i was getting into the car and i had a feeling in my gut to recline the seat back just in case we flipped upside down in a car wreck (not even kidding) i also thought i should slide the seat as far back as it could go, and even put the pillows and blankets that we brought for the track meet into my lap. clearly this wasn't 'luck' i don't even know if i believe in that word at all. but anyways, God wasn't done with me then, and He still isn't done with me yet.
at that time in my life, i didn't feel a rush of life cuz of nearly dying. the only thing i really took away from it was that i need to listen to those feelings i get, cuz they can save my life. and learning what my sister and i wanted to 'pass down' to each other if either of us died. i would inherit all of her clothes, and she would inherit my letterman's jacket (since she hadn't lettered yet, something i LOVED that i had before her) little did i know, she actually would be in a car accident herself 9 months later, and be one of those un-surviving passengers. you can read about that dreadful day HERE.
p.s. i still have a lot of her favorite clothes and wear them as often as i can, and when i do i want to tell every one that i am wearing her clothes. i want them to know her as much as they can, maybe they will gain a little of her joy, a little of her heart, hear a little of her laughter if they see her clothes on me. these clothes mean the world to me.

well, this time. this near death experience of mine has changed my life for good.

waking up from surgery, after receiving my very delayed morphine pump...i hear:
"so, did you hear that they nicked your artery?"
"no?" i replied. not even realizing what that meant.
"yea, they nicked the artery and they couldn't find the hole. you lost a lot of blood. they had to call for a vascular surgeon to come in for immediate assistance"
"wow. really?" i say...
"yea, you almost died"- said my boyfriend. his face was pale. he got up and started to walk to the foot of my bed.
"wait, what? i almost died? what? what do you mean?!" i said frantic, wanting to know more of what he and my family just went through.
"yea, they called us into a small room..." tears rushed into his eyes. he grabbed my feet to rub them, but he froze and the saddest expression covered his face.
"babe, i am so sorry."

he still cant really talk about it. i don't blame him, i can't imagine losing him.

fast forward 2 weeks i am out of the hospital, and i am back home in Oregon. spending most of my time sleeping. for the first few weeks i probably slept about 18 hours a day. when i was awake i was eating, throwing up, or watching tv. quite a life right?
eventually i was able to begin wrapping my head around the magnitude of what it meant that my artery was nicked...that i could have died so easily. after the somewhat of a depression that it initially left me in. i began to see life in a whole new way. my relationships, my lifestyle, my beliefs... i began to have an overflow of gladness, of appreciation. like i started all over again. like God gave me another chance. i had never felt more alive than i did at that time.
an overflow of emotions has been constant, but not always for the good. sometimes, my pain is so severe that it breaks me down. and down and down i go, falling into my pit of despair. i become overflowing in weakness. overflowing in desperation for help and relief. nothing giving me hope.
this has been one of the wildest rides i've ever been on. yes, i have been through extremely hard times in my life, but never have i been so in tuned to my emotions, my feelings and what they mean. now i feel my grief like never before. i feel my grief with no walls to guard or hide its depth. and on that same level i have never felt my joy, gratitude and peace as greatly as i have in these days.
a couple weeks ago i was feeling so broken. in so much pain. but i knew that i was going to be ok. because God has always proved to me that i am in His hands. i wrote these words to be my reminder:

When all is taken away and yet we still see Him, its clear that in His hands is where we are. Its where we've always been.

i have been repeating this over and over again to myself and wanted to share it with you all. why must it take something huge like almost dying to let us understand this simple yet profound fact? why must it take over a thousand tumors for me to comprehend this?

yes, this ride has been wild. but as i step back, i see that His hands surround me. and that my friends, is the only place where i want to be. come what may, i will still be here. wrapped gently in my makers hands. its where i've always been.