Sunday, September 23, 2012

Joyous Day!

Happy Birthday to our son, Caleb!  His wisdom has inspired, blessed, and encouraged me.  September 24 has significance not only because it is Caleb's birthday, but because it was September 24, 1998 when a 14cm neuroendocrine tumor was successfully removed from the tail of my pancreas.  So September 24, 2012, marks 14 years of living with pancreatic neuroendocrine cancer.  While the tumor later reappeared in the head of the pancreas and remains there rearing its ugly head on a daily basis, I never dared to imagine that I would live for 14 years.  

When the tumor started invading the posterior wall of my stomach and the length and quality of my life seemed imperiled once again, Caleb wisely reminded me that it was not how long I lived but how well I lived that mattered.   

During the early years of this journey, I had CT scans every 3 - 6 months and generally received the contrast liquid in small brown vials.  I viewed those vials as perfect tiny vases for flowers, so saved them.  Now I enjoy choosing flowers to be held lovingly by the these make-shift vases.  I take great joy in seeing beauty emerge from what was an ordinary container for a nasty-tasting fluid. Somehow, it is representative to me of how the ugly and painful experiences of this life can be transformed into expressions of beauty and hope.  

Thanks to so many of you who have supported me on this path.  And thanks to those of you who have sent emails telling me of the encouragement and hope and nutritional support you have found on this blog.  You are the reason I keep exploring new ways to find Pzazz in the midst of health and nutritional challenges. 

For more information about any type of   neuroendocrine cancer, I highly encourage you to look at the websites for the Carcinoid Cancer Foundation or the Caring for Carcinoid Foundation.  

The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network is also a useful resource for individuals with pancreatic neuroendocrine cancer. 


  1. Joyous Day indeed! I am one of the many people whose life has been enriched by your wisdom and friendship.

  2. Happy Birthday to your son Caleb!
    Thank you for the blog and the recipes, for the encouraging and inspiring words, it has helped me tremendously!