Thursday, February 26, 2009

difficult recovery

Hey everyone- I am back. It has been a difficult few weeks. I have been sleeping a lot (ya right, difficult you say), but I get tired so easily it is frustrating. Especially in the morning, it is difficult for me to get up and going.

I feel like I am confined to my hospital bed, in my room. I can't help even less than before. I finally yesterday walked down the stairs holding onto my dad's arm and doug monitoring so I didn't fall. I barely made it back up the stairs later, that was a feit. I did get out to enjoy the sun and warm a little while, which was great.

I have my nephrostomy tubes (for urine) on either side of my body, the dressings for that on my back with my epidural on my back as well. I have the g tube hanging from my front left side which I have to hook up to a suction machine when I feel full or like i am about to throw up. Then there are the ostomies, the colostomy which only requires a small dressing but I have had some problems with it lately. Then my active ileostomy which requires the full ostomy dressing. After my last hospital admission, I had so much swelling in my legs from my feet to my pelvis. It now only remains in the pelvis area which we are unsure if that is tumor or not.

I feel like I am losing my relationship with my daughter, I can't help her. She does come sit with me in my bed to watch a cartoon, read a book or occasionally I will get on the floor to do a puzzle or play candyland. I still get to see her as she is growing so independent, beautiful and smart. I still get a morning hug and kiss and an evening kiss but my time with her has gotten much more limited and that makes me so sad. I am trying to get things done for her, a journal, video, something for her to remember me by, it is difficult though.

I am starting to get better, to the point where I may be able to have more visitors. I know that I have had a few people who have called but it hasn't been the right time yet. I am just getting strong enough now to have visitors more. It's just hard to know when, I never know when I am going to feel good or not. I fly by the seat of my pants these days! I hope all of you out there haven't given up on me. I need to go read all my comments. My computer hasn't worked the last couple of days when I finally felt well enough to get back on.

So this is a glimpse into my life right now. It has been very mentally difficult to go through, many emotions not only with me. Thank you all for your continuous support you give my family. I believe it is getting closer to the end of this journey and we are going into it blindly, trying not to fear but to give up our control and take it day by day.

Take car everyone. Thank you all who have helped us with Ella, meals, etc. My parents have especially gone out of their way to drop everything and help us almost every spare moment they have. love you all. Shawndra

139 comments:

Anonymous said...

Shawndra,
It was so good to hear from you! Know that we all are continuing to lift you up in prayer. You are on my mind daily.

Jesus,please be with Shawndra.
Please help her to feel good today.
Please help her to feel your strength and love.
Amen.

-praying in Indiana

Anonymous said...

Shawndra,
You are such an amazing woman. Even though it has been quite a while since I have seen you, you are always on my mind, and I have been praying for you daily. May God continue to bless you and your family.
Meredith (Gross) Mathews

Anonymous said...

Love you. Miss you. Hope to see you soon.

Love, dustin

Anonymous said...

tears are flowing as I read your blog..1. for the sadness that you feel for the end and your sadness about your daughter 2. that you are still here for another day with your family..tears of joy. Even though I have never met you you have made such an impact. I check 2-5x a day for an update. If you have this much of an emotion and impact on someone you have never met you will leave such a great memory. legacy and inspiration for your daughter and family. My thoughts are with you.

Prayers from STL

Anonymous said...

can't really think of much to say, except that i think of you (and click on the bookmark to this blog) more-than-daily. and i wish i lived closer to you so i could do more than just be a blog spectator. i pray that your discomfort is lessened and that your strength is multiplied. take care. pulling for you, always.

stassen

Anonymous said...

You are always in my prayers as I check your blog daily. You are an awesome woman and mother who gives us all hope (and this I know only from reading your blogs). --praying in Ohio

Pepper Gerstner said...

Shawndra,
I don't "know" you or your family...but I do have a feeling you are going to be unforgettable to many people--especially your daughter!
I lost my mother at a young age, and I remember the smallest things she did for me. Ella too will remember. :)
Keep your chin up and enjoy your time with your family. And take care of yourself.
Pepper in KCMO

Paulette said...

Shawndra,
It was so good to hear from YOU!! I have come by everyday to pray for you. I will never ever give up on you.
We have a woman in our church who too is losing her fight with this disease and she is recording stories for her grandchildren on tape and it is so difficult for all involved.
Thankyou for your transparency Shawndra,it helps me know better how to pray.
Father, I pray you wrap Shawndra in your arms and give her a peace that passes all understanding, Lord meet all her needs.

You are not alone.

Anonymous said...

God Bless you and your family Shawndra. I will continue to pray for your comfort and peace!
Stephanie

julie said...

You are AMAZING! Your blog is an incredible gift to your family. Thank you for sharing even though this is so hard for you, you make us aware of what is important. You have been so brave through all of this. You will not go through this blindly...God will hold you and guide you Shawndra. I know you are scared, but Ella will never forget you. I don't think any of us will. You have touched so many. Prayers and Blessings your way.

Jodi said...

Although I don't know you personally, I feel like we are close friends. I have been with you on this journey for quite some time. I have a daughter Ella's age and it hurts so much to feel the pain you are in. You love on that little girl and the wonderful husband you have; they are awesome. It seems that you have an amazing group of family and friends taking care of you. You are in my thoughts and prayers EVERY SINGLE DAY. You are an amazing, strong woman and an inspiration to us all!

Praying in Lawrence, KS . . . . . Jodi

Anonymous said...

Shawndra,
Your concerns are understandable. But have no doubt that your daughter will remember you, and not just from journals and videos that you are creating for her. However, those items you make for her will bring her a comfort and connection to you. You will not be forgotten!

Mommy said...

Hi Saundra,
I have been following you for a very long time, but I don't think that I have ever left a comment. I just wanted to tell you that you have touched my life more than you could ever understand. You are a beautiful woman inside and out. I am so sorry for all that you have gone through. I do know that you have shown Ella more love in these few years than many, many people ever have in a lifetime. That is what she will remember. Enjoy this precious time with her. I pray for peace and comfort for both you and your family.

AMBurgess said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
AMBurgess said...

I have been reading your blog for longer than I can remember. It is so good to hear from you. Please dont worry that you are losing your relationship with your daughter. I know first hand she will remember you and any physical things you can make for her will only give her some tangible for her to have of you. You will always be a part of her and that is the most tremendous gift. You are such an inspiration and I hope to be 1/2 the woman, wife, daughter and friend you are. I don't think you or your family can comprehend the mountain-moving effect you have had on so many people. God bless you every moment, dear Shawndra.

kelley said...

Shawndra B,
You are in our thoughts and prayers many times a day. There are no words that I can offer to change things, yet there is so much I want you all to know. I guess thats where we leave it to the lord to bring peace and comfort and make sure you know just how loved you are.

Patty's said...

Praying for everything that you and the family may need. Daily you are all lifted up to God in prayer and conversation.
All our love.
Beth Patterson

Kristy said...

Shawndra~
You don't know me at all but I wanted you to know how much I admire you and your strength. I have came to know you through reading your blogs (from a friend who has passed it along). You are an amazing woman. I know your daughter, Ella will be just as AMAZING as you are! What a precious and beautiful girl you created!! Please know that there are people (like me :) ) that are constantly thinking and praying for you and your family every day!Trust in God as I know you are. Believe that he will take care of Ella and your family. Don't be afraid. Shawndra~ I don't even know if I'm saying the right things but know that there is one more person still praying for you!

Anonymous said...

Hi Shawndra,

I, too, only know you through your blog. I am a friend of Jennifer Ireland's mom. I check in often. I was so excited to see a post from you. Every time I see something with Strawberry Shortcake I always think of you and Ella. Stay strong. Praying for a miracle. Peace be with you! You have touched many lives. Thank you for sharing your life with so many. We all are a little better because of you.

Anonymous said...

Shawndra,
I think the best thing we can do for our children is be a positive role model. Ella will read this blog and see that her mother is courageous, loving, and honest when facing great challenges. As a reader I have learned so much from you. I have no doubt your daughter will too. You are teaching her a great lesson on character and that is one of the most important things a child can learn. And one of the greatest gifts you can give her.

I have never met you but have been following your blog and comment occassionally. I think about you often and am inspired by your strength.

Chris

Jan said...

Dearest Shawndra,
All I can say is I love you. Thanks for writing...I know how taxing that is for you to do. You are definitely being surrounded by prayer, for God is listening. It is evident in the strength He continues to give you each and every day. You are "SuperWoman!"
Gentle hugs and kisses,
Jan

Becky said...

Shawndra,
It was so good to hear from you and know that you have a lot of people praying for you! Please God wrap your arms around this family and give them strength, peace and faith on this rough journey. Shawndra you have been such a great role model as has Doug that Ella isn't going to forget her mommy. I can't say that I know how you feel because I don't but my heart aches for you! Lifting you guys up to our Heavenly Father.

Anonymous said...

Shawndra,
I check here daily, many times, hoping for an update and I was SO HAPPY to hear from YOU tonight! You continue to be in my prayers daily and you are an amazing person with a heart of gold! Your daughter will cherish anything you leave for her! I have a letter my dad left me almost 20 years ago! Rest and relax and give Ella and Doug lots of hugs!

Anonymous said...

You are amazing!!!!Praying for you from the Lake of the Ozarks!!!

Anonymous said...

Shawndra,

Whenever you feel sad, scared, sick, tired or in pain- repeat over and over and over...

Come Lord Jesus!

He knows all you carry with this cross and he is walking right beside you.

I love you and am DEEPLY inspired by you.

Rylina said...

Shawndra, you are truly an amazing person. I have read your blog for quite some time now and it always amazes me how you are so upbeat and full of life. You are constantly putting others in front of yourself and you are always giving of yourself. To share this journey with all of us has to be hard. You said not to give up on you...believe me we aren't!!! There are so many of us praying for you and love you, even though we don't know you. I know you have to get tired of all of us saying the same thing but you have truly touched my heart and i want nothing but the best for you and your family. You are always in my prayers. Thank you for being you.

Terri said...

I love this prayer by St. Francis de Sales, and it brought me immeasurable comfort during our journey with my mom's illness and passing last year. Our priest says it at the close of every church service, and I've always liked it.

I'm posting it here now because I hope it will help you, Shawndra, as well as Doug and the rest of your family. I've never met any of you, but you all are in my prayers.


Be at peace.

Do not fear the changes of life, rather look to them with full hope as they arise.

God, whose very own you are, will deliver you out of them.

He has kept you hitherto, and He will lead you safely through all things; and when you cannot stand it, God will bury you in His arms.

Do not be afraid of what may happen tomorrow; the same everlasting Father who cares for you today will take care of you then and everyday.

He will either shield you from suffering, or will give you unfailing strength to bear it.

Be at peace and put aside all anxious thoughts and imaginations.

St. Francis de Sales

Anonymous said...

Shawndra~
You still amaze me at your courage and strength through all of this. You have changed me as a person to think twice about the "small things in life" that we all take for granted. You are AMAZING...to say the least. Stay strong...and know that your not going to go through this "blindly"...and for sweet Ella...she knows her Mommy loves her...your an AWESOME mom, and it doesn't seem fair that you are going through all of this:( Your in my prayers, and always on my mind....God Bless you and your sweet family.....

Brigette Green (CMH)

courtney said...

shawndra ~ bless you for leaving such an open honest post for us all to read. you obviously are a very graceful woman! you are handling this w/dignity & grace, you truly are. for you to have the insight of a nurse & to explain to us readers out in blogland exactly what you are going thru (the descriptions helped me to picture in my mind what you're going thru) is truly thoughtful.
I am going thru something very tough right now, nothing compared to what you are, but tough nonetheless and I truly needed to read your post tonight to get strength. As I go thru this journey of getting off of drugs for the next few days/wks/months, I am going to think of you as my inspiration and strength. God is using you in many ways and tonight you truly inspired me to follow thru on quitting this painkillers that i have become addicted to. thank you shawndra. you are beautiful. xoxo

Lorna Taylor said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

I wish this was easier for you.God will give you peace.Try not to be afraid.I wish you didnt have to go.We appreciate all you have given and it will never be forgotten.We will miss you.Enjoy all you can!!

Lorna Taylor said...

Shawndra, you will never lose your relationship with Ella. A Mommy's love is much too strong for that.

Think about what you said in this post about your own parents: They have "gone out of their way to drop everything and help us almost every spare moment they have."

That's what a parent's love is all about. You will always be their little girl, and Ella will always be yours.

God bless you, friend.

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for sharing. Your bravery and honesty have helped so many people, even saved some lives.

Thank you so much for encouraging us to take care of ourselves and our familes and live each day to the fullest.

Love, Marny

Anonymous said...

shawndra,

thank you for taking time to update us. i pray for you and think of you often, and today i will ask God to especially bless you and your beautiful daughter. I live in Boston, I don't even remember how I found your blog, I don't know you or anyone who knows you - yet, you have touched my life in such a way that I check in daily for an update. you're an angel on earth.

Joyce Smith said...

Dear Shawndra,
Thank you so very much for the personal update. We have missed you and it is wonderful to hear from you. I cannot imagine how painful all this must be, and yet, you remain so profoundly loving. Your daughter is blessed beyond measure to have you as a mother and Doug as a father, as you have been blessed by your own parents. Blessings such as these cannot be taken away, ever, come what may. Bless you, Joyce

Anonymous said...

Sweet Shawndra, As I read your post I could see you and Ella together. Trust me, as a daughter who took care of her mother going through your battle, I know first hand that Ella will always love you and adore you. She will one day see all you have done for her and the love you have for her. You continue to make me better girl. I wish you peace, love, happiness and a little more sunshine on that sweet face of yours. The one thing I truly remember going through what you are facing is that your family is looking at you with such admiration, unconditional love and feeling thankful for having the moments that you are having so you can know just how much you are loved and them as well. Some people never get that and that is the grace of God. I love you sweetie. Melodie Chrisman

Anonymous said...

We love you Shawndra and want what is best for you...if that means quiet time with no visitors, that's fine. THis is your journey - we are all here to help, but you do what feels best.

Sending so much love to you and your family...love ya, girl
Vav

Anonymous said...

I heard this once at a meting and thought you might be interested in making this with Ella. It is a memory box. You can put things in it that make her think of you: some itmes that you always have in your purse, on your dresser, in your car etc. Also include an item of clothing and seal it in a ziplock so it will smell like you and your perfume soap etc
You are an inspiration to many! THank you for opening your sory up to the world. I am praying for you, Ella and the rest of your family! God bless you with the peace of Christ that surpasses all understanding!

Nicole said...

Sending thoughts and prayers from Kentucky. I have followed for several years now and we have so many similarities in our lives. I am a nurse, wife, now a mother to a baby girl! I have found so much strength in your story and a the blog has served as a place I have visited almost daily to find comfort, strength, humor. Thank you for sharing your life. You are such an inspiration. I can't imagine how difficult things are at this time, as you prepare items for Ella. Know that she will cherish whatever you leave for her. You have been such an amazing mom throughout your entire journey...I hope to be as great of a mom as you are!! Hang in there!

Hugs from KY~ Nicole

Anonymous said...

BLESSED FRIDAY MORNING TO U DEAR SHAWNDRA, GOD BLESS U SWEET GIRL FOR TAKING TIME TO SHARE YOUR WORDS WITH US....I JUST HAVE TO SAY DITTO ON LORNA'S BLOG....NO MATTER YOUR PHYSICAL ABILITY TO INTERACT WITH DEAR ELLA...U KNOW AND SHE KNOWS THE LOVE AND BOND YOU SHARE AS MOTHER AND DAUGHTER....THIS WILL NEVER CHANGE!!! ALSO THE IDEA OF A MEMORY BOX IS WELL WORTH THE TIME IN GATHERING YOUR THINGS, JUST A FEW SPECIAL THINGS, HAVE HER DECORATE IT WITH HER FAVORITE THINGS (COLORS, CHARACTERS ETC....)MY CHILDREN NOW 23, 22 AND 15 STILL HAVE THEIRS FROM THEIR DADDY PASSING OVER 10 YEARS AGO AND THEY CHERISH IT LIKE NOTHING ELSE....AGAIN , WE HAVE NEVER MET IN PERSON BUT I HAVE BEEN POSTING FOR SO LONG AND PRAYING EACH DAY FOR ALL OF U THAT I HAVE COME TO LOVE YOU AND YOUR FAMILY ACROSS THE CITY..... May the road rise to meet you,
May the wind be always at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
The rains fall soft upon your fields.
And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of his hand
WITH CHRISTIAN LOVE AND FRIENDSHIP, YOUR ANGEL OF PRAYER IN KC, MO....JEN MILLER :)

Anonymous said...

Dear Shawndra,
Thank you for using so much energy to once again think of all of us and post. You continue to amaze us all.
In my last post I told you what a wonderful job you and Doug are doing with Ella. Part of that is the independence she has gained and the curiosity to explore the world around her. You are not losing her ...you are the magnet that will always draw her back. But relish the fact that she is so full of life and curiosity....and Shawndra ...that brings her right back here ...to get to know you even better through this blog...she will cherish this AND you forever. You will shape her and influence her all of her life.
Love and hugs from Minnesota. Julie (jill's Mom)

Anonymous said...

Oh sweetie, so good to hear from you. I am praying for you daily and I feel for you so...
You have been so kind to share your journey with us all. It makes me a stronger, more appreciative person just knowing you in this way. You have changed so many lives and as hard as it is to accept, maybe that has something to do with this journey you are on.
We all love you very much! I will pray for your baby girl and husby too, everyone around you that cares and loves for you daily. You are truly a wonderful person. Keep your chin up and save your strength for those precious moments with that little girl of yours. And do what you can to set up memories for her, but don't worry so much about that because you have touched so many that she will receive a wealth of information about her mommy from all of us, your friends, family, prayer angels. And I know she will just glow with the memory of you always!
You are so precious Shawndra.
In my heart
Deb (LSMO)

Anonymous said...

Dear Shawndra,

Thank you so much for spending the time and energy to let us know how you are doing.
You have had such positive impact in so many people's lives...much more than any of us can put into words.
Do not even think that you are losing your relationship with Ella. Like others have said, she will always be proud of your graceful attitude. Your bond with her is everlasting, you will always be by her side, no matter what. Also, do not even let the thought that we might have "given up on you" cross your mind: most people here (including myself) have never met you in person, but haveyou on their minds and keep checking on you multiple times everyday!
We all love you for the precious human being you are, and I hope you can feel the massive wave of positive thoughts headed your way. May all this energy bring you comfort and peace.
Rest as much as you feel like, enjoy your loved ones, and we will be here, cheering for you!

With love,

Debora.

Anonymous said...

Shawndra,

I'm feeling such love and compassion for you today. I know God is giving you strength. How I pray that He just fills you and your family with such peace.

Love,

Julie

mdrimmel said...

Shawndra,
Know we are all praying for you everyday and for peace in your life everyday. Your daughter will love and remember you as a strong and loving mom no matter what. She has such an awesome inspirational mom to know and love and that will always be in her heart. Take care and just know that everything will fall into place as it should be. We have never met, but your mom is a sorority friend of my friends mom. So I heard about you that way. I also lived in Shawnee and went to Prince of Peace Church so I felt our paths were somehow crossing though we had not met!!

Anonymous said...

Hi Shawndra:

You may not remember me-I was a freshman when you were a senior at Drake, but we were both Alpha Phis. I wanted to let you know that ever since Stassen sent out the link to your blog over a year ago, I have checked it multiple times. Although we haven't seen each other in years, you left such a strong impression on me (you were always so kind!) and I am thinking about you every day. The more I read, the more your courage strikes me. I wish you nothing but comfort and peace.

I am praying for you and your family, Shawndra.

God Bless,
Tara Turney

Anonymous said...

Shawndra
I want to Thank You for sharing your fight with us.
I have just found out I have cancer and hope I can fight this with the Class that you have.
You are a very brave and special Mother your daughter will always
know you , my guess is she is a little you .
God Bless

Vickie Kruse Wieberg said...

Dearest Shawndra,
This post has left me devastated, heart broken and amazed at the strength you carry as a human being.
I always pondered that there are only 2 ways to die and both have their advantages..1) quickly. No pain, no suffering. Didnt see it coming BUT you couldnt tell anyone goodbye or how much you love them or leave them any gifts of remembrance of you or even have them with you when the time comes OR 2) You were told it was coming, you have time to prepare, time to make amends, time to love on each of your loved ones, time to tell them everything you want them to know & time to talk to God BUT you would have suffering, pain & fear of the unknown..., neither of them are fair & a hard decision IF we could make it but we can't. It's probably a good thing because how could you pick?..., though, I believe that everyone that has gone quickly, wishes they could have been able to say I LOVE YOU..., All I know is that your family, your daughter, your husband, they will NEVER have to wonder what they mean to you & you will never have to wonder what you mean to them. That is a beautiful thing.
When I was young, I had a baby girl that I gave up for adoption. Thats what made me decide to become a nurse. Anyway, I sent with her gifts. Gifts with SPECIFIC instructions. I sent a gold band picked out by me, to be given to her on her 16th birthday, FROM ME. I sent with her a necklace that I wore most of the time, to be given to her on her wedding day. I sent my baby ring, that my parents gave to me on my 21st birthday, to be given to her on her 21st birthday, FROM ME. And, I sent other gifts for random things, so through her life, I would be there & she would know how much I love her & to remind her that I am ALWAYS with her. I wrote, I LOVE YOU on all of the boxes, somewhere, in my handwriting...., because of this, I have NEVER said GOODBYE to anyone again, I hate Goodbyes, they break my heart and also, because I don't believe in them. Theres never a goodbye, only, I'LL SEE YOU LATER!..., God Bless You Shawndra, Love, Vickie in J.C.,Mo.

Anonymous said...

Thinking of you and sending a hug. Dee Smith

Anonymous said...

Shawndra-
Children deal with death a lot better then you might think. My father died when I was very young. I do have some memories of him, but my Mom did an excellent job of making sure I knew what a wonderful person and father he was. I know Doug will keep your memory alive and Ella will grow up knowing what a strong woman and wonderful Mom you have been. I think a letter or video is a great thing to leave your daughter. She will charish it for her entire lifetime. I pray that you and your family find comfort in the coming weeks and months. You are an unbelieveably strong woman. You have changed the way I live my life. Thank you for sharing your stuggle with us. I will keep you in my prayers.

God Bless,
Christina
Olathe, KS

Allison said...

Shawndra - I continue to pray for you and your family and think of you often.
-Allison H (CMH)

anne french said...

Shawdra,
I am a neighbor and live 2 culd-a-sacs down from you on Bond St....I drove by on Wednesday when you were outside & it made me so happy to see you out enjoying some sunshine & fresh air. (That was me waving from my black Odyssey!)You are inspiring & have touched so many of us.
Anne French

Anonymous said...

Shawndra, we continue to pray for you, doug and ella. you are such a fighter, you are an inspiration to me. I know you have an amazing support net around you and an amazing family, but if we can help at all, anything, even if ella needs a playmate for a but, i am sure zoe would love a playmate. just let us know if we can help at all. I just remembered the other day how when you were in nursing school with andy and everyone and all you ate were carrots, andy would come home laughing and say that you were turning orange because you ate so many carrots! LOL...just remember we all are rooting for ya!! -Kari & Andy Engelhart

Anonymous said...

Dear Sweet Shawndra - please don't ever think any of us will give up on you. Your an amazing woman, full of love, compassion, and amazing strength. Ella will ALWAWYS remember you. I know your mom & dad and the rest of your family will always make sure of that. You are so strong Shawndra, and have taught me what is most important in life. I pray that God will give you and your family the strength to carry on with your journey and know that HE will be with you every step of the way. Praying for you always, every day, sweet Shawndra.

Jill B.

Anna Turnquist Thomson said...

Shawndra,
I check your blog daily for updates. You are always in my thoughts and my prayers.

I look back on my Alpha Phi days and remember fondly my first sememster living in the Phi house with you, Vavre and Shannon. Those memories will stay with me forever.

You have a beautiful family that I am sure is very proud of the graceful way you have accepted your path to God. Your daughter will never forget you, as you will live eternally in her laughter, tears and heart for all the days ahead.

As my 4 year old son reminds me - no body ever leaves us, they just take a trip up to the clouds to dance with God.

May you always dance.

Rachel said...

Shawndra....I live in Lee's Summit and prayed and prayed for Jennifer Ireland...that is how I found you. I have been praying for you for 2 years. I am soo soo sorry that you are going through all this difficult times, but know that God is Loving you and all of us readers/bloggers love you too.

I hope that you get more strength and can spend more quality time with Emma during this time.

Always thinking and praying for you!!!

Rachel
lovefor9@gmail.com

crazeemommy said...

Hello Shawndra,

I found your blog when my mom was diagnosised with colon cancer last summer. You really helped both of us get through the tough times. I am praying for you and your family!

Anonymous said...

I am so glad to hear from you Shawndra. You have become such an important part of our every day lives. You are such an inspiration to us all and even though we realize you have so much on your plate right now and you don't always have the time or feel well enough to check your blog just know there are tons of folks just like me whom have never met you that pray for your comfort and for your family's guidance every day.
Your little girl will never forget you. How could she? She is YOU and she loves her mommy very much.
I pray for God to intervene in your lives and provide you with strength, wisdom, comfort and hope for your you, your parents, Doug and Ella, Andrea and everyone else on this journey with you.
We love you and hope your days are filled with love, joy and feeling good.

Kristen

Jennifer (jkincolorado) said...

I'm so glad to read an update from you -- you just made my day!!

Thinking about you and hoping for the best. :)

Anonymous said...

So glad to hear from you Shanwdra. I continue to pray for you and your family. Your prayer warriors will never give up on you!!! Like Kari posted above, I too remember when I worked with you on 2H how you always ate carrots!!! I also continue to eat a little snack you showed me once upon a time....everytime I eash Kashi cereal with Splenda and cinnamon I think of you!! Please know that you are constantly in my thoughts and prayers. I continue to be inspired by your strenth, love for your family and your faith. You are such a blessing to all of us who are fortunate to know you!!
Sending comfort and love,
Melody Rusk

nancygrayce said...

Dear Shawndra...It is so good to hear from you! I pray that you will continue to get strong! I think of you often, as so many do and lift you and your family to God! You have impacted so many lives and you write with such grace and dignity, so unselfishly!

Don MacLeod said...

While exploring the remoteness of Maine I came upon a ledge well worn by an ancient glacial stream that must have once fed the river below. My tired eyes caught a shadow on the surface that mimicked the dented cushions of my father’s favorite recliner. An open space breeze kept the bugs away and the granite was radiating the warmth of that day’s setting sun. I closed my eyes and melted into that body fitting reclined contour.

Sometime later I awoke to a star filled sky. Still too much asleep to move my eyes were drawn to the spaces between the stars and revealed those stars I had not yet noticed. More stars came up and set on the periphery of my jagged pine tree horizon. I again closed my eyes.

My next awakening added a dancing ribbon of colored light to my night sky. It raced away and then re-launched from its unseen origin. If I thought I could see a pattern the light would just vanish as if by some awareness of being witnessed. Sleep returned.

I awoke chilled to the sunrise of a new day. I quickly changed into warmer clothes and felt the muscle pain of my previous efforts. Looking down with the morning sun I now found my resting place a featureless granite surface.

As I hiked away, I remember feeling like I had been allowed to pilot our planet on its evening flight.

32 years have past since that night in Maine but I return to that memory whenever cancer disturbs my peace. Perhaps sharing comforting memories is just what people have always done when unsure of what else to do.


Hold Fast & I left the keys hanging on the tree if you want to go for a ride.
Don MacLeod

Anonymous said...

Glad you posted...I was afraid to call you, knowing you are so fatigued etc. Know Shawna that you are loved and thought of ever so often by me. Bless you sweetie...sue
http://cancersucksbigtime@wordpress.com/

Anonymous said...

Shawndra -

You have such courage and I know that God will not abandon you during this difficult time.
My grandma has always told me to rely on this passage during times of uncertainty. "Trust in the Lord with all your heart. Lean not on your own understanding. In all things acknowledge Him, and He will make your path straight."

Many prayers of comfort and peace go out to you and your family.

Anonymous said...

We pray for your comfort and peace!

Love,
The Bakers

Anonymous said...

Shawndra,
You have helped more people than you can ever imagine. I think of you often.

I'm sad about what you said about Ella. Remember that it is normal for Ella to be acting independently and it doesn't mean she is any less connected to you. You have given her so much of yourself and it is present within her. Take care.

Naomi in GA said...

You have been an Angel to us on this Earth, & though we dont know the rhyme and reason for everything in life...GOD's plan is not my will but thy will be done..and I pray for you all the time my dear friend- You know that! I will always treasure the times we chatted,and you are a source of inspiration and courage as I am on my journey battling illness now as well..
I love you my dear Angel friend, enjoy all the moments & make all the memories you can along the way.
Im here for you shall you feel up to calling, if not I understand do only what you are up to Shawndra, we all understand that you are under so much right now the weight of the world on your shoulders, do what your feeling up to, no need to ever explain to any of us..we all love you unconditionally!
With Love & Blessings
Your sister in emails & texts in GA ; )
Naomi

Anonymous said...

Shawndra,

Thank you for taking the time to update your friends in blogland. Though I have not had the pleasure of meeting you in person, I am honored to have gotten to know you through your blog. You are truly a light in a dark world.

I wish I could hug you and tell you how much of an impact you've had on me. I wish words were enough to comfort you and your loved ones during this impossibly difficult time.

Thank you for sharing your life and your family with us. Thank you for sharing your journey, your optimism, your faith, your pain, your fears and frustrations, your everything. Our prayers continue, and they are no less fervent or hopeful than they have ever been.

Sending much love and many prayers,

jg in ca

Anonymous said...

Shawndra,
I have never met you, but began reading of your medical journey through my daughter-in-law's blog.

I pray for you, that God may grant you comfort, serenity and even a healing if it is His will.

Please know that a grandmother in
SW Missouri prays for you daily.

Anonymous said...

Shawndra,
I don't know how you do it. Most people would crawl into a hole and be bitter through all of this. But you are so selfless. So kind. So tough. We are all better people just for knowing you (either in person or through your blog).

Do know that we all love you and Ella will always remember how awesome you are. You have a neighborhood of friends who will be reminding her that she has an angel for a mother.

Do know that we're here for you if you, Doug or Ella need anything at all. We love you all.

Russ

Anonymous said...

Shawndra, Doug, Ella, Carol, Gary, Andrea

Only you and God know how you feel.

HE knows you.

HE is our FATHER.

HE's walking with you throughout this challenging journey.

Pray and talk to HIM.

Praying will make you feel better, stronger, and more at peace, less fearfull.

We're doing that for you the most we can.

All our love,

The Schmiedt family

Anonymous said...

Shawndra,what an amazing young woman you are! I pray for your comfort every day and for that of your family. Penny Weldon

Anonymous said...

Dear Sweet Shawndra,
It is so good to her your 'voice'. I am constantly praying for you and your dear family.
Shelley

Jennie said...

You inspire me and make me want to be a better person. For that I thank you. I'm praying so hard for you and your family!

Lisa said...

It's so good to hear from you. I pray you are comfortable and feel God's love and peace around you. Your strength continues to amaze me!

I think a memory box is a wonderful idea.. and maybe little letters to Ella for her special birthdays and graduations that Doug can give her. I still have the directions my dad gave me on how to get to college...it's kind of a standing joke that I can get lost easily and this is obviously WAY before the days of cell phones and GPS's. Trust me...the note is very very special. Just a thought.

Anonymous said...

Shawndra-

God bless you and your family. Our thoughts and prayers are with you always. Ella is blessed to have you as a Mom. We Love You!

The Mudge Family

Anonymous said...

Shawndra,

As I have told you before, you continue to amaze me. I don't know if you realize what an amazing person you are and the impact you have had on so many people, including myself. I am inspired by your courage and your strength. You continue to fight to be here with your family and your friends, despite all of the pain and suffering. Please know that you are in my thoughts and prayers throughout each and every day. Please call me anytime if there is anything you need or if you just want to talk. Thank you for inspiring me and for reminding me every day to enjoy all of life's moments and to not take anything for granted.

Love,

Jennifer Teegarden

Jessie said...

You are in my thoughts. Jessie

Anonymous said...

Shawndra,

I am still praying for you and your family....Ella looks so sweet and is such a mini you!!!Thank you for sharing your journey and reminding ALL of us how delicate life is!!! You are a very special person!!

Sincerely,
Kitty

Vickie said...

Hey my cousin,

Just read your blog & I really don't know what to say - just wish that I was closer to give you a hug. Loved you from the 1st time I saw you - very cute baby - when you and family stopped by Mom's on your way to Estes. All of us love you and think of you daily.
Vickie

Vickie said...

Hey my cousin,

Just read your blog & I really don't know what to say - just wish that I was closer to give you a hug. Loved you from the 1st time I saw you - very cute baby - when you and family stopped by Mom's on your way to Estes. All of us love you and think of you daily.
Vickie

Anonymous said...

Hey my cousin,

Just read your blog & I really don't know what to say - just wish that I was closer to give you a hug. Loved you from the 1st time I saw you - very cute baby - when you and family stopped by Mom's on your way to Estes. All of us love you and think of you daily.
Vickie

Anonymous said...

Hey my cousin,

Just read your blog & I really don't know what to say - just wish that I was closer to give you a hug. Loved you from the 1st time I saw you - very cute baby - when you and family stopped by Mom's on your way to Estes. All of us love you and think of you daily.
Vickie

Anonymous said...

Hey my cousin,

Just read your blog & I really don't know what to say - just wish that I was closer to give you a hug. Loved you from the 1st time I saw you - very cute baby - when you and family stopped by Mom's on your way to Estes. All of us love you and think of you daily.
Vickie

Anonymous said...

Hey my cousin,

Just read your blog & I really don't know what to say - just wish that I was closer to give you a hug. Loved you from the 1st time I saw you - very cute baby - when you and family stopped by Mom's on your way to Estes. All of us love you and think of you daily.
Vickie

Anonymous said...

Hey my cousin,

Just read your blog & I really don't know what to say - just wish that I was closer to give you a hug. Loved you from the 1st time I saw you - very cute baby - when you and family stopped by Mom's on your way to Estes. All of us love you and think of you daily.
Vickie

Anonymous said...

Shawndra and family,
Keeping you close in my thoughts and prayers. May you have some quality time with your family and friends. Your blog and photos will be a wonderful legacy for Ella, plus the many people who will share stories of you and how you touched their lives. love to you and your family, amy graver beers

Anonymous said...

Dearest Shawndra,
Thank you for sharing what you're feeling deep inside...your fears, your hope and your confidence. Your bravery will inspire others to see and to share their own needs.
I'm holding you up in my prayers now more than ever for God to hold you close and comfort you and fill you with unexpected peace.
I will never forget the fun our families had during your growing up years and watching you mature into the beautiful wife and mother you are! What a blessing you are to so many and I want to tell you, "I love you and your family" and how I wish things were different and better. I actually thought you would beat this cancer and become a inspirational speaker! Keep your favorite verses where you can read them and they may bring just the right word of hope and reassurance you need. You are an unforgetable blessing!
My love to you and your families,
Marilyn Harbrecht

Robin said...

Continued thoughts and prayers for you Shawndra.

Anonymous said...

You are always in my thoughts and prayers. You are amazing.
Love,
Kelly

Anonymous said...

I love you, Shawndra!

((((hugs)))

Brandi

Jess in Ne said...

Shawndra -
So good to hear from you....
thinking of you and your family...
Jess in Nebraska

Anonymous said...

Shawndra,
Mike and I have been thinking about you alot lately and want you to know that you are always in our prayers. Enjoy every minute with your daughter because she already knows you are a beautiful and strong person.
Love and prayers always,
Sarah B.

Anonymous said...

Hi Shawn-D,
I love this (below) and remember you loved it as well when I sent it to you around Thanksgiving time. I thought I would post it here--------

For each new morning with its light,
For rest and shelter of the night,
For health and food, for love and friends,
For everything Thy goodness sends.

Raloh Waldo Emerson
---------------------------------
Whenever I read it, I am reminded to be thankful for all that I have. One of those things is a friend in YOU! Despite the hardship and pain you are going through (which I am so sorry to hear about), I am also so thankful that you have been able to spend more time with your family! And I am so thankful that we all got to read your words again. Please know that I am thinking of you and praying for you every day!
Love, Hill

Anonymous said...

shawndra,
while i haven't talked with you for a long while, i think of you often and pray for you often. what a lucky girl ella is to have such a strong, beautiful mom. you have been an inspiration from afar.
as you are taking it day by day...rock chalk jayhawk tomorrow.
love and friendship,
noelle

Anonymous said...

Hi Shawndra, I am Danielle from Brazil... I have to tell you, life is amazing... We never know what is waiting for us on the other side of the street... I think all of us should live day by day... being able to enjoy the small things of life and being close to the people we love. We all have difficulties in life, but what differentiates us from each other is how we face our problems and our attitude... You are special for that... And that is why people keep coming back to your blog to know more about you... We care a lot about you…That is how Ella will remember you by... A very special lady who makes people fascinated... Feel better, we are with you! Always, Danielle

Anonymous said...

Shawndra,
Thanks for updating & keep up your recovery. We're all pulling for you!

Anonymous said...

Shawndra,
You truly amaze me. You are my hero. I pray for your strength and peace. God bless.

Anonymous said...

Shawndra-

You are an amazing and inspirational woman. Doug is an amazing and inspirational man. You are so loved and you love so much. Ella will read this blog and whatever you leave behind for her some day and she will know what a phenominal mother you are. Your words about Ella's independence initally left me feeling sad, but then I thought about it and though that this type of independence is probably exactly what you would want for your daughter. She is just becoming a mini-teenager!! :-)

Shawndra, I wish you nothing but beautiful peace. I have never met you and I have never once posted to you or ANYONE whose blog I follow, but you have touched me in a very deep and personal way. You have made your mark!!!!

Rest and enjoy your baby, Shawndra!!! She is so beautiful!!

Joleene said...

Shawndra- Hang in there, I am sure it isn't easy, but you are doing a great job. You have done a great job with Ella, and this blog will help her know just how much you love her.

Anonymous said...

Shawndra - so good to hear from you again. I am sorry that things have gotten more difficult - I am thinking of you all the time and praying for your comfort and for strength. You are amazing... always have been!

My love, Mandy Hamlin Featherston

Anonymous said...

ShawnD - I think of you often and pray for you daily. I am sending many hugs. Love - Dawner

Anonymous said...

Shawndra,
We love you and Doug and Ella. I am so thankful that God put you in the house next door. My family is here for you now and forever....Jenny and Brad

Anonymous said...

Heavenly father this is your daughter asking to let your servant Shawndra find your mercies. Let your word be fullfilled. Support her with your hands when her body is frail. We look to you all the day long and night in our times of trouble. For vain is the hope of man. We put our hope in you. According to your perfect will, Lord, let Shawndra's light continue to shine to those who know and love her. As she is an inspiration to many. And when the time has come and the world is hushed, grant her safe passage without fear or pain to her new life. Grant her holy rest and peace. Through Christ our Lord.

Vickie Kruse Wieberg said...

Dear Shawndra, Thinking of you & praying for you this second day of March. SPRING- the air, the sun, the warm temp.s for the mid week, may be just what the Dr ordered.
Wishing you strength, comfort & precious moments with your Ella & Doug. Hope its a good Monday for you, God Bless, Vickie in J.C., Mo.

Anonymous said...

Shawndra,

Thanks for taking the time to update the blog. I have never met you, yet I read your blog often and pray for you, too. Continue to walk with Jesus and he will carry you through this difficult time.

Blessings on you and your family!

Mark in Shawnee

Anonymous said...

Shawndra, I too have never met you yet, feel such a closeness to you...you are younger than my children so I can only imagine you and your families grief. I lost my Daddy when I was a young girl and he still remains close to my heart and memory. He did not leave me any letters ect. and oh how I wish he would have. You are giving Ella a precious gift through all of the writings...she will treasure them...and you will forever be in her heart and mind....my grandmother once told me "your loved one is never truly gone until you let go of them " and I have chosen to not let go of my Daddy and of her.... and Ella will never let go of you, her Mommy the most special woman in her life..today as well as all of her tomorrows.
~blessing from a Mama in Illinois~

Anonymous said...

Shawndra, Doug and Ella:

Thinking of and praying for you daily. Our hearts and love are always with you.

(((hugs))) and butterfly kisses :)

We love you!
Brandi, Brad, Victoria and Olivia

Anonymous said...

Shawndra-
I am so glad that you are home and are able to enjoy some sunshine and your family. I think of you everyday and check your blog frequently. You amaze me. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family! Thinking of you! Amy Larkin Hopkins

Lori said...

Shawndra -- You are an amazing woman! I continue to pray for you and your family and think of you often. Many Hugs and Much Love!!

Vickie Kruse Wieberg said...

Shawndra,
Just checking on you this morning & hoping you are enjoying some sunshine today & are finding it easier to wake up in the mornings. Hope you are continuing to regain some strength. God bless, Vickie

Jennifer O said...

Shawndra

Thinking of you today & praying that you are having comfortable days and joyous little moments with your family. Hope you can get outside when our 'warm up' comes along in the next few days. A little warm sunshine is always a good thing for the soul.

God Bless!

Laurie said...

I think of you and your family every day. Prayers are said every day for peace. I can't imagine the difficulty. Peace be with you.

Vickie Kruse Wieberg said...

Shawndra,
Just checking in on you, AGAIN! :) Hoping you are resting comfortably, playing with Ella & hanging out with your family. Thinking of you & praying for you, Vickie

Anonymous said...

Just stopped by to say "Hello!" and to say that I hope you are able to get out and enjoy some of this glorious sunshine the next couple of days :)
Thinking of you and praying for you and your sweet family always.
Take care~
Deb (LSMO)

Nat said...

Hi Shawndra,

Thinking of you lots these days. You are an inspiration and I pray for you often.

Love,
Natalie

Vickie Kruse Wieberg said...

Hello all, Shawndra, I was just checking on you again this sunny Thursday morning!! Does anyone know how our trooper, Shawndra is doing?..., I know I can speak for all of Shawndras prayer warriors, she is always on our minds & in our prayers! God Bless you, Vickie Wieberg in J.C.,Mo.

Beth said...

Shawndra,
It's great to hear you're able to get out of bed even if it is just occasionally. I hope you're able to enjoy every moment with your family (in particular Ella). Don't worry about what you can't do with her just enjoy what you can. And let everyone in your life take care of you so you have the energy to enjoy those small moments. Wishing you peace and happiness.
Beth

bahama mama said...

Last night, in marriage prep class, we talked a lot about praying and how we could always do more of it. The teacher mentioned praying more for each other and as a couple.
When I contemplated my own prayers, I realized that they may be at capacity because you reside there and have for a long time. This was true when I staying with you at the hospital and is still true.
On one hand, I wish I could see you and spend time with you every day, but on the other hand, I know this is your time with family and I don't want to rob you of that. You have a wonderful husband, parents and sister. And that little girl of yours...oh my...she is smart and beautiful and will be breaking hearts all over town very soon!

I hope to find a good time to stop by this weekend. I love you very much.

Love, d

Anonymous said...

ps - or should I have said....

love, the second of three amigos! ;)

Anonymous said...

Good Morning, Shawndra, Doug and Ella!

Just sending our love and hugs to you on this spring like Saturday morning.

Love you all!
Brad, Brandi, Victoria and Olivia

Anonymous said...

Good morning to all of the prayer warriors...holding loving thoughts of Shawndra and her family...we need an update...even though I have never met her...I love and hurt for her...so if anyone knows how she is pleasse update us...

Shawndra, sending you love and peace from my heart to yours.
~blessings from a Mama in Illinois~

Anonymous said...

Praying for and thinking of you all.

jg in ca

Vickie Kruse Wieberg said...

..., DITTO!! :) Vickie

Vickie Kruse Wieberg said...

..., DITTO!! :) Vickie

Vickie Kruse Wieberg said...

..., DITTO!! :) Vickie

Astraea said...

You're always in my thought and prayers. I check on you many times a day and say another prayer. You are so loved.

Anonymous said...

Shawndra,

I pray that God gives you strength, courage and comfort every day...stay strong in your faith and hope...God is with you and your family guiding you through this journey. His plan for you is SO GREAT! Continue to love on your little girl and family...Ella will always remember you and remember you for the GREAT and AWESOME things you have done for her and she will carry you with her every second of the day. What a legacy to leave! You ROCK girl and I wish you nothing but happiness, courage, and hope! We are all praying for a miracle! GOD BLESS you and your family...Prayer Works!

Praying and sending you strength from Miami, Florida!

Anonymous said...

Dear Shawndra,
You are in my thoughts and prayers, I saw your story on the J. Ireland Foundation. I am so warmed and moved by both your courage and love for your family... I believe the love you have for your daughter will always be carried in her heart for all of her life...

We made a small donation to this foundation (in honor of you) and will continue to do so whenever we can and will always think of you when doing so.

Anonymous said...

HEY HEY HEY.....BLESSED MONDAY AM TO YOU DEAR SHAWNDRA AND YOUR FAM....HOPE THIS FINDS U RESTING COMFORTABLY, SHARING TIME WITH DEAREST DOUG AND ELLA....MAKING THOSE PRECIOUS MEMORIES EACH DAY....I CONTINUE TO PRAY FOR U AS ONE OF YOUR KC PRAYER WARRIORS.....LEAN ON THE LORD DEAR ONE.....YOUR ANGEL OF PRAYER FROM KC,MO.......JEN MILLER :)

Anonymous said...

Thinking of you. (((Shawndra))) (((Shawndra's family)))

Laura, NP
Adrian, MO

Anonymous said...

All FRIENDS AND BLOG READERS

ANDREA E MAILED SAYING OUR DEAREST SHWANDRA WENT BACK TO THE HOSPITAL YESTERDAY, SUNDAY ,DUE TO INCREASE PAIN.

LET'S IMPROVE OUR FAITH IN GOD TO HAVE A PAIN FREE FRIEND AND IN PEACE.

GOD BLESS YOU ALL.

Brazilian friend from Florida, Roswita

Anonymous said...

KEEP THE PRAYERS COMING DEAR WARRIORS.....I TOO READ THRU FACEBOOK THAT SHAWNDRA HAS RETURNED TO THE HOSPITAL.....LIFT THE FAMILY UP IN PRAYER...AND MUCH PEACE AND COMFORT FOR SHAWNDRA.....AN ANGEL OF PRAYER IN KC, MO.....JEN MILLER :)

Vickie Kruse Wieberg said...

Dearest Shawndra & family,
I am @ home with a sick child today. While he is sleeping, I felt the need to check on Shawndra. Im glad I did. I will be saying extra prayers for her comfort & for her familys too.
I pray for Shawndras mother today. As I see my child not feel well, I think of Shawndras Mom & what she must be going through. Shawndras relief of pain, I KNOW will help relieve her familys pain also.
As I hold my son, I am grateful for the moments I have to comfort him.
I know God hates to see his child, Shawndra suffering too. I will say prayers for you all. God Bless, Vickie Wieberg in J.C.,Mo.

Anonymous said...

i am thinking of you often and i hope you are comfortable and surrounded by loved ones at this time. i was thinking about you today and the supremes song 'remember me" came to mind. "remember me as a sunny day... didn't i inspire you a little higher"... the context of the words are wrong but the sentiment is right. we will all think of you when we drink the wine and remember you are a good thing.

Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month said...

March is National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month. Please spread the word and if it is recommended you get screened then do it! If you are not of an age that it is recommended then spread the word to those in your life that are and remember that this is not just an "old" person's disease anymore. There are so many young people out there who are diagnosed everyday and it is usually not discovered until it has progressed. Listen to your bodies and spread awareness. Seeing my friend go through this is not something I ever thought I would do at this age and words can't decribe the heartache. I don't want to have to see it happen again. Remember that you are your own advocate and if you think something isn't right then request the tests. When Shawndra had her colonoscopy the doctor thought that maybe they would find Irritable Bowel or Crohn's disease, but even he didn't expect to find cancer. So as you remember Shawndra and her friends and family in your prayers please remember all the others who have fought, are currently fighting, or will fight this same battle and pray that someday they will find a cure or ways to earlier detection. Breast cancer survival rates have increased drastically with all the media attention and hopefully the same will be true of colorectal cancer someday.

Anonymous said...

Shawndra -
Gosh it's been years. Holly passed along the link to your blog and I've been thinking about you ever since. My heart goes out to you and your family and I applaud your courageness and strength as you fight this battle. Your little girl is absoultely beautiful and I have no doubt after reading some of your blogs and just a handful of these comments that she will be loved forever and no details will be spared in creating memories of you to her. It is obvious you are so loved and there are so many people with you on this long battle you've fought. May you remain brave and strong in your continued fight.

Katey (Lenihan) Preston

Becky said...

For all of Shawndra's followers I read this on facebook tonight "Shawndra is stable in the hospital tonight". We continue to lift this family up in prayer and for God to wrap his arms around them and comfort them during this difficult time.

Astraea said...

Thought I stop by and check on you. I pray you are pain free tonight.
Much Love,
Astraea, AZ