Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Bits and pieces

This morning, I received quite a phone call. Charm magazine, located here on the Spacecoast, called me to tell me they want to feature me in their October issue as part of the Cancer awareness issue. My cup runneth over! Now, I just hope I can live up to such expectations as I'm sure some amazing women have come before me. In thinking about it today, I hope to reach other women who have, or are, enduring breast cancer. It can be quite a lonely journey, and sometimes, we find solace in the most unusual places. Right? Anyway, a gift from God to me, and I hope I serve them well.

Lesson for the day: The immune system is sort of its own system and it circulates via our lymph vessels which are throughout our body (except the brain). The lymphatic vessels contain a pale, thick fluid (lymph) consisting of a fat-laden liquid and white blood cells. All the icky stuff that needs to drain from your body goes through the lymph system so it is important!

Borrowing from another site, I provide more background: along the vessels are the lymph nodes, tonsils, bone marrow, spleen, liver, lungs, and intestines--where lymphocytes can be deployed as part of the immune response. It works or can be seen at work when an infection leads to an enlarged lymph node at the elbow, or when a throat infection causes the lymph nodes under the jaw to swell. The lymph nodes swell because the lymphatic vessels drain the infection by carrying it to the nearest area where an immune response can be organized.

So what does this mean? If you are a breast cancer patient who has had lymph nodes removed, it means your lymph system will slow down on the side of removal and you must encourage it everyday to prevent lymphedema. Each morning I do 20 crunches and 20 pulleys (from an over the door system) to prevent swelling. If swelling gets into my arm, it means trouble. So, practice prevention and always wash thoroughly, especially cuts, nails, etc. The tiniest of cuts can cause a big problem.

Back to work on school projects! Two more classes after this and I AM DONE!!

Hugs to all~

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