Tough as Nails

So an open disclaimer:  the events over the next two years or so will be told to the best of my memory.   So many things happened so quickly that I honestly don’t remember what happened first in some cases.

Past:

All of that happened on Monday: the test and shocking discovery.  On Tuesday, I came home to Curtis walking to his truck.  My boxer puppy had died sometime during the day.  (I know.  Can I catch a stinkin’ break!?)  So we dealt with that.  On Wednesday, we met and went to the doctor’s office of the dr. who had done the colonoscopy.  We sat down, and I immediately noticed how optimistic he was trying to be.  So in short, it was cancer.  The good news is that it had not spread to the liver or lungs, just to some of the surrounding lymph nodes, making it Stage 3.  Now I am NOT saying that any of this is truly “good news”.  But on the up side (there goes that optimism again) we knew what the problem was and according to the dr.’s comments, would be able to have a good game plan.  There was no sitting, waiting, wondering.  Ya’ll, there is merit in that. No doubt.  Over the next few weeks, the doctor’s appointments were countless, it seems like.  Our local doctor had recommended us to a surgeon in Vanderbilt.  So we visited with her, and man, was she a a gift.  Just her personality was award-winning with us.  I know that Curt was one of her youngest, yet most critical patients, and she did anything she could to answer or comfort him.  Sometimes, she would just downright make you laugh.  Anyways, after meeting with her, we met with an oncologist from Vanderbilt that confirmed everything we already knew, but said that she would help us find an oncologist closer to home to make things easier on us. THEN, we met with that guy, Dr. Mathews.  Now this man had a course of action.

Now let me insert this crazy piece of info.  All of these appointments (and I didn’t even mention the ridiculous amount of appointments for scans he had) happened during the week following devastation of a large tornado that hit our home town.  Houses totally gone, a school destroyed, mass chaos.  That’s important because Curtis worked for the utility company.  Needles to say, that week they were all hands on deck around the clock.  Curtis would work 16 hour shifts just like everyone else and squeeze his doctor’s appointments in where he could.  I remember we had a scan in Vanderbilt (about 1.5 hours from home) at like 7 p.m. one night, got home around 11:00 p.m. and he left to go back to work as soon as we made it back.  This guy was a friggin’ champ.

Present:

Alright ya’ll.  I know some of ya’ll are religious people, and I need some prayers!  So when your life gets flipped up side down, you tend to have a new outlook.  So a few months ago, I was accepted into Auburn University’s Graduate School.  Yep, I’m getting my master’s degree! In what? Agronomy: Soil Management and Crop Production. Getting back to my roots.  LOL (Couldn’t hep myself.) I’m pretty excited because 1.) this is a pretty competitive program to get into with very few females and 2.) it isn’t a “cookie-cutter” program.  Everyone who goes through it does not take the same classes.  Your classes are specifically chosen based on what you want to learn or do after you graduate.  They are even letting me work with the biosystems engineering department to learn more on geospatial technologies ( GPS, GIS, and remote sensing systems to collect, manage, and analyze spatial data for agriculture) and irrigation systems.   I tell you all this because there was a stipulation on my acceptance:  I had to take this crazy chemistry class that I didn’t have to take for my B.S. degree.  Now, when I was in high school, my chemistry teacher was a fill-in.  AKA: she knew nothing.  And neither did I at the end of the class.  In college, I passed chemistry.  Not with flying colors, but I passed.  But I love science.  Always have.  Now I’m a Physical Science teacher.  Chemistry is part of my curriculum.  But I teach the bare basics to freshmen.  That’s it.  I started this Chem class last week.  I signed up to take it at my local campus, in a classroom, so I could ask 1,000 questions.       (That’s 1.0 x 10³) #shootmeintheface        Anyways, last minute it got switched to an online course, which I’ve never taken.  SO, for the next 3.5 weeks, I have to teach myself a semester of advanced chemistry, starting on chapter 12 of an online book that already looks like it’s written in Greek  (yeah, I’m totally lost as to what happened the first 11 chapters),  2 chapters A WEEK, and be able to pass the weekly tests on said chapters.  Ya’ll my brain is SMOKIN’.  Word’s of encouragement GREATLY appreciated!

Also, wanted to share this pic of a shower coming over one of the corn fields at sunset on the farm where I spend a lot of time.  Other than that, Life is good.   🙂

IMG_7158e

XOXO, KP

7 thoughts on “Tough as Nails”

  1. So, I just finished your latest post “Tough as Nails” and although it wasn’t my spouse, I too experienced (x 4, two parents twice) all the biopsies, scans, Dr’s. appointments, surgeries, chemo, radiation and sadly, death. I would not have had the mind to even enroll in a class after going through all that so the fact that you did and are working toward your dream amazes me. That tells me that you are “Tough as Nails” and will do great in your class and in your career when you get your Masters. Love you Kim.

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