Doc update: Post Kidney Cancer Surgery

Hi everyone! sorry I have been all over the place. I mean to blog everyday, but lately I have been trying other projects around the house. Pinterest is the devil when you are home and can’t do much. But this shows how I lose all my energy. I went to Target and the dollar store, was gone about an hour for organization supplies. I was exhausted the rest of the day! haha

Anyway, about the doctor. This past Tuesday I had an appointment with my surgeon. love him.

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He spent another 45 minutes with my mom and I answering questions.

looonnng list of questions
looonnng list of questions

He never made us feel like he was in a hurry, or that he didn’t want to be there (unlike a lot of docs) It was a great visit, with lots of good info!

  • Surgery went really well. Got the tumor out in one piece WAHOO
  • Other parts of my kidney were cancer free! WAHOO
  • Type of cancer I have is EXTREMELY rare in 20 year olds (almost unheard of)
  • My stage was 1Ta, which is the best you can have. WAHOO
  • Reoccurrence rate at 5 years is 5% for me WAHOO
  • I┬ácan lift over 10 lbs now!

Obviously, I knew a lot of these things after surgery a month ago, but the reoccurrence was new to me. I will get a CT scan in July to check my lungs and kidney again, and then depending on that, more scans in the future. Eventually, they should be every other year.

The one thing that bothered me was there wasn’t too much support for kidney cancer or renal cell carcinoma. I asked if they had races or organizations here in St Louis, and my doctor said not that he knew of ­čśŽ

My mom thinks I should start a race……

Well, I just wanted to give an update from my appointment, and hopefully my blog will be less medical here in the coming weeks haha. Here’s too a fast and smooth recovery ­čÖé


Question for you:

Have you ever raced for a cause?

-I also do the March of Dimes walk/run that raises money for premature babies. This year it is the day after my brothers wedding, so I’m not sure if I will be there


Life savers after surgery

During recovery from a major surgery, I started to look back at all the amazing things I used that were LIFE SAVERS. The little odds and ends that made recovery and life so much easier those first few weeks and I wanted to pass them on to you!

~Night gowns~

I didn’t think this would be a big deal, but wearing even sweats with my incisions was NOT a good time. If you EVER have to have surgery, you must have some. Also, have several so you can wash them each night. You don’t want to get your incisions infected (ok. done being the nurse haha)

~Workout jacket with thumb holes~


it kept me warm, and its cute!

~$9 sleepers from Old Navy~


I didn’t want to walk around the hospital barefoot, this were so comfy too!

~Soft robe from target. Also comfy clothes at Old navy~


I used the robe in the hospital and at home. I LIVED in comfy clothes for WEEKS.

– Netflix. I watched Prion Break (also Downton Abbey on Amazon Prime) and lots of chick flicks!

~Cards and flowers~


I had NO IDEA how much these would effect me. Even a simple text, meant the world to me. To know that others were thinking and praying for me, was uplifting. I was in great need of them when i was having a not so good day

~Cake. Because it’s awesome.~


I mean who doesnt love cake! My mom’s friend made this and brought a smile to my face ­čÖé

~Cross stitch~


This was given to me from my grandma, and helped keep me busy. Also, I accomplished something more than watching tv and laying around. This helped me so much!

~Bag of goodies~


I was given this before surgery by a close friend. It had EVERYTHING! I especially used the travel toothbrush, lotion, and face wash. Back to the basics.


Before surgery, I only had a few days to prepare. I ran to Target, Marshalls, and Old Navy is a WILD search for comfy clothes. I came home with bags, and used about 3/4th of them. I slippers were also a great find. On sale, andd then I didnt walk barefoot in the hospital-YUCK.

Now to never have to use this list again ­čÖé
Question for you:

Have you ever had a long stay in a hospital before?

A favorite piece of comfy clothes, or something you use wen you are sick?

Back after surgery!

Hi everyone!!!

I can’t believe it has been so long┬ásince I have posted. It has been a LONNNGGG┬ácouple of weeks,┬ábecause┬áa week and a half ago, I had a partial nephrectomy.

Life has had its ups and downs. But today, I can finally say I am feeling better. Last I talked about my MRI results, and how quickly surgery came up.


Well march 7th, was the day. My parents and I arrived at the hospital at 7am for surgery at 9.

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We waited for just a bit before┬ágoing┬áto the preop area. Here I changed into a gown, got an IV, and signed consent. I had an amazing nurse during this time. I didn’t have any major breakdowns, but I was starting to get nervous.

Then around 9:45, I said goodbye to my parents and headed back to the OR. This is when I started to get some nerves. I had a great OR nurse and nurse anesthetist who I think could sense it. They tried to calm me down by talking, but the tears started coming. Luckily, the meds took effect quickly.

For the next few hours, my family and friends waited to hear. I was then taken to postop care. Where I had another great nurse! My blood counts were a little low. So I stayed there for awhile to make sure everything was ok. And luckily, it was!

The next few days were a pain. literally.

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(these pictures were taken when I was feeling better on sunday)

Then on Sunday, I came home. My parents, family, and friends have been amazing. I have no idea how I would have taken care of myself, or Andrew that first week.

I even received Get Well Cards for all of Andrew’s friends in 3rd grade. They were so sweet!


I can not explain how blessed I feel to have everyone send well wishes, thoughts, and prayers. It has been a trying few weeks, but these have kept me going. I hope to be able to keep blogging, keep you guys updated, but some days my energy does not exist. My pain is a million times better, and I will take it day by day ­čÖé

The next few weeks, I will have to take it easy. more to come and I promise not to stay away so long ­čÖé


When the MRI results come back cancer

Well, I am sure that a lot of you can tell that the results for the MRI came back, and they weren’t the best. Soooo we rewind alittle…..


I arrived at work and was having a great morning. But I missed a call from my doctor, then played phone tag with his nurse several times. FINALLY, we caught up together. And I was thinking they would say “oh. it’s just a fat mass. NOOOOO BIGGIE”. Well, instead they told me it was papillary renal cell carcinoma. Cancer. Yep. The big C word.

After finding out the results, I pretty much had a break down and had to leave work. Luckily, I have amazing coworkers. I also was in contact with the GI nurse the whole morning, who went ABOVE and beyond her job to comfort and help me. She has set up an appointment with the renal surgeron the NEXT DAY.


From Monday till Tuesdays appointment, I was in such a fog. I guess that’s called denial? haha. My mom and I went to the doctor’s office (where I was the youngest person there by 30 years!) and talked with the doctor for almost an hour. He was so patient and kind. I never felt rushed with him, and his nurse was equally as awesome. I am so excited to have their support.

After the doctor’s appointment, we got to work. We drove to my grandparents and gave them the news. When my grandfather started tearing up, I almost lost it! Then my mom and I stayed on the phone and called family and friends. And the support was AMAZING! I will never be able to describe the love and prayers I received. It was incredible!


Today, I had to arrive at the hospital for a chest CT to make sure that the cancer was not found in  my lungs. And they LOOKED GOOD!!! Wahoo. This was defiantly something that I was extremely stressed about. The rest of the day was spent on the phone with work, leave papers, and family and friends. Surgery scheduled for Friday at 1pm.


I had a ton of running around. I basically went to every store in St Louis in search of comfy clothes. and I bought ALL of them haha. I then had a two hour preop appointment. Where they took blood, did a physical, and asked lots of questions. Thank goodness that is done. Next up was packing, prepping for the surgery (more GI fun), and figuring the house and life out before I have surgery tomorrow! Well, then I received a call at 1pm that surgery was bumped up to 9am and I needed to be there at 7am. EEK!!! Bring on the stress. Luckily, I had a TO DO LIST and I just went after it.

So now I am ready to kick cancers butt. hahaha.

The type of cancer that they┬ábelieve I have, is 95% of that is not aggressive. Which is good.┬áThere is also┬á95% survival rate. Also REALLY good. This cancer is mostly found in adults┬áMUCH older than me. It is extremely rare to be found in your 20s. (lucky me) Mine is about the size of a ping pong ball that is grown into my kidney. So for surgery, I will just get that part of the kidney removed. So I will have one and a 1/2 kidneys starting tomorrow ­čÖé

Well here’s to kicking cancers butt!!! I am watching Ellen to get me in good spirits

I do have a caring bridge site that people can follow along, just email me if you would like to see it! My mom will be updating it tomorrow after surgery!

Thanks everyone for following along, and hopefully I will back sometime this week or next week ­čÖé

What I ate Wednesday

Yesterday was a bit of a roller coaster. Andrew had oral surgery for an extra baby tooth. No biggie, but still scary (for him and me!) Everything went just great! but my eats were a bit over the place. I am also trying to bring myself down from the sugar high known as vacation haha

Now time for getting back to regular eating!


Breakfast Part 1: 1/2 a banana and PB (didn’t want to eat a huge breakfast when Andrew couldn’t eat or drink. poor guy.)

Breakfast Part 2: Omelet (2eggs, peppers, american cheese) and turkey bacon


Lunch: Chicken from Sam’s and watermelon


Dessert: chocolate swirl pudding


(undocumented snacks 2 string cheese)

Dinner: A burger with cheese and bacon with a side of watermelon


Dessert: Ice cream sandwiches!


Andrew and I also just laid around a lot, so tomorrow its time to get a good sweaty workout in!

Question for you:

What is your favorite summer snack?
-I could eat ice cream all day. everyday.