I’m Looking Up!

When writing my last post in October, I expected to be away for a little while.  I never dreamed it would take this long for me to get back to you!

After doctor visits and testing, Multiple Sclerosis was confirmed the week after Thanksgiving.  MS was a sobering diagnosis, but I viewed it as manageable.  Life would go on, and I began following an autoimmune diet.  But that’s not the end of the long trail of doctor visits and testing.

Romans 12.12

Three days before Christmas, a second diagnosis was official – non-small cell adenocarcinoma – lung cancer.  It was a surprising occurrence, given the fact that I have no risk factors (like smoking or living with second-hand smoke).  There is a wide range of treatment options available.

God brought peace as we were covered with prayer from friends and family, but peace didn’t come easy.  It’s been another lesson of trust.  Every anxious thought must be held captive.  Our God is bigger than any fear!

If you are in a trial of any type, I hope this song ministers to you as much as it did for me.

We’ve experienced blessings from the Lord each day on our journey since October.  Our Christmas wasn’t hurried or rushed.  It was a blessing to relish family time in a way like never before.   With a new perspective, it was one of our best Christmases yet!

As I look at the future of Curtain Queen Creates, I don’t plan to continue with even the sewing aspects.  I am extremely sad to let go of this fulfilling thing that has consumed much of my life these past five years.    (I’ve discovered that sickness x 2  can be a full-time job!)  If there are recipes you’d like to add to your file, print them now.  Over the next month or so, I expect to close this site.  😦

Embrace This Season (see today’s post) will continue as a place to write and reflect and share.  I never expected to be embracing a cancer season (or MS, either), but I fully believe God has this new assignment for me.  He may have a new ministry in mind.  I hope you’ll join me at Embrace This SeasonCancer won’t be a main topic there, but “fifty and over” health will be discussed quite often.  🙂

You all have blessed my life so much these past years.  I received far more from you than you received from me.  What a blessing you have been, and I thank you from the bottom of my heart!

Blessings~

56 thoughts on “I’m Looking Up!

  1. I can’t find words to express my concern for you and your family while you meet these challenges. The faith and hope you have given me through your posts — I send them back to you tenfold! God is good, as you well know. Again, thank you for all you shared. You are a part of my home too
    through your prayer and sewing over the years. Rest and enjoy your family. You will be feeling better soon.
    XOXO

    • I hope you take this time to continue enjoying family, friends and holidays. Do not let the illness control you even though there will be some good day’s and bad day’s. Try to be around things that are positive, cheerful and bright. I do understand at forty I was hit with cancer twice over a three year period. I am fine now but to find out the material I was working with actually caused the cancer. I am 57 and doing great. I had to leave my job, which I really did love. But my son and I were more important than my job. I will keep you in my prayers and send you some strength, take care.

      • I’m so happy you’re doing fine now! I’d say giving up your job was worth your life and health for sure. I’m glad your story has such a happy ending! Thanks for sharing it. 🙂

  2. Dear Kim, I commend your courage, faith, strength, and optimism…I’m not sure I could be that strong!! I certainly will include you in my daily prayers and pray that God will shower you with His strength during this trying time..God bless and stay positive, this journey is not easy but with everyone praying hopefully it will be easier. God bless, Gerry

  3. Kim, I am praying and will continue to pray for you. I know you already have the knowledge that God is with you on this journey, and I know that knowledge will help you and your family through these trials. I’ll miss your blog posts, but I know you need to concentrate on your health right now.

    • Laurie, I really appreciate your prayers. “Thank you” doesn’t seem to be enough. Yes, I have more lifestyle changes ahead in order to stay well after treatments and deal with the MS symptoms. I’ll miss you, too!

  4. Kim,
    I am deeply sorry that you are faxing all of this. I”ve always looked forward to your posts and received so much joy….. until today……please know you are in my thoughts and prayers…. I pray that you will be comforted by the Lord as you venture through this…
    Blessings to you and to your family.
    Thank-you for all that you have poured out for us over time.
    Penny

    • I’m sorry to bring bad news, but your prayers are greatly needed right now. I want the chemo to hunt down every cancer cell and wipe it out! God can do that. 🙂

  5. I am sorry to hear of your illness and hope and pray healing will come to you. Have you heard of Carnivora? You may want to google it and read about how it may benefit your immune system. God bless you and keep the faith.

  6. Oh Kim, Kim, I will not say this is nt far, because God never allows things to happen to us without reasons. I will say to you, please, tell me exactly what can our family do to help you and yours? It does not matter the distance apart, please say the words. We will keep sending prays to God in your behalf. You are a true servant of God, and he “got this”.

    • Thank you, Ivory. God has made sure all our needs are met. During treatments, I’m sure I’ll be calling on some local friends for help occasionally. It’s so sweet of you to extend your offer to help from wherever you’re located. You are so kind! I really appreciate your prayers! 🙂

  7. Sweet Kim, my thoughts and prayers are with you. I am praying for your healing. God does answer our prayers. Your strong faith and the love of your family and friends will see you through this. God bless you.

  8. Dear Kim:

    I am so very sorry to learn of your struggle. I am with you in prayer and have shared your news with Carolyn. Please know that you are not alone. You are loved by many and you are being heard. We love you, Curtain Queen!

    Jackie and Pete Wilson

    • Thank you, Jackie. Many people have had cancer, and God has brought them through to full health again. I’m standing on His promises! I sure would love to see y’all! 🙂

  9. I was thinking about you the other day and feeling like I had been neglectful in not following your blog. I’m so sorry to read about these two diagnosed illnesses you’ve recently found out about. I do hope and pray you are receiving good care and will find a way to manage the MS and wipe out the lung cancer.
    I’ll be keeping you in my thoughts- I wish I could hug you and I truly pray that everything will be all right. God Bless, Liz

    • Thank you, Liz. I’m sad to leave some things behind, but I truly can’t continue my same pace of blogging while managing such huge health aspects as a lifestyle change. The next battle is the cancer, and then rebuilding my health to stabilize the MS. God can handle them both, and I trust Him completely. I appreciate your prayers very much! I’ll miss you and the blogging community for which I’ve been a part these last five years. I wish the best for all of you! 🙂

  10. Kim, I am so sorry to read what you are going through. Please know I will be praying for you and your family. I followed your blog Curtain Queen Creates for quite some time. I found Women in the World through you in 2015. I look forward to updates from you.

    • Thank you, Anna. I hope to join WitW again from time to time in the future. I’ll give more regular updates at Embrace This Season, my new blog. I appreciate your prayers so much! 🙂

  11. Dear Kim, it’s difficult for me to begin to explain the depth of my understanding of what you are going through. In May 2016 my doctors told me I had breast cancer. So, I have been on this journey for over 19 months. I will pray for you. I will pray that God will continue to give you peace. And I ask you to pray the same for me. I will look forward to hearing from you in Embrace This Season. May God bless you and your family. Best Regards!

    • Gina, I’m sad to hear you’ve been on this journey, too. You have a unique understanding and can help to encourage others, as you have me today. I will definitely pray for you! Thank you for praying for me, too. I hope to hear from you occasionally through comments at ETS. 🙂

  12. Dear Kim
    I am a two time cancer survivor and know through all my experiences that hope, faith, and prayer is the only thing we need to concor the demons of cancer.. God is the healer of all things and the comforter we all need. Stay strong girl,and you will be our teacher again sooner then you think. Love to you and your family and many prayers coming your way,,,,,,,,,

  13. What the what?!???!?!!?!?!!? Kim!!!!!!! Oh, my goodness!!! This is not AT ALL what I expected to read this evening! I’m shocked, saddened, and just beside beside myself! I’m so sorry, but I admire your positive outlook. You put in His hands and then go about the business of management/treatment. That’s the way to approach it for sure! Please know that I’ll be thinking of and praying for you to squelch this mess. Geez, Louise! Life as we know it can just be stopped on a dime. I will most certainly subscribe to your other blog so that we can keep in touch. Take care, my sweet.

    • Thank you, my sweet friend! And, I didn’t know about your recent surgery until today, either. Aren’t we both full of surprises? I hope your recovery will be speedier than past times. (Those images freaked me out!) Girl, this is a difficult way to collect some bling! I’ll be praying for your complete recovery and look forward to seeing you back in full swing in the spring. Big hug! 🙂

  14. Wow. I was hoping it wasn’t something like this that was keeping you away. But I figured it just might be something very serious. I don’t even know what to say, except that you will be in OUR prayers at church and at home. I watched a series this past week called THE HEALING MIRACLE. It’s about stem cell treatment curing so many illnesses…EVEN MS. From what I have learned from autoimmune disease is that everybody has a WEAK SPOT. You already now know about how food and environmental toxins play a huge role in autoimmune diseases, so I don’t have to explain THAT. My mother never smoked, but also got lung cancer a few years ago. She was diagnosed 1st with osteoporosis when she fell and broke her wrist in 2000. Before that she never even had an outdoor allergy. She rarely got sick. After 2000 she got high cholesterol and arthritis. Now I know it was from eating all the chemicals in foods and the the flu shots she was forced to get working in the hospital. She worked there 25+ years. She won’t listen to me about how food can further harm her or help her by eating all organic foods and staying away from gluten, dairy, soy, sugar, yeast (and whatever she might be sensitive to). My father either. He was exposed to mercury as a kid, and has piled on autoimmune diseases over the years. AND cancer. NOW the cartilage in his knees is almost gone. This stuff doesn’t JUST HAPPEN. So I am glad you are being proactive!!! And understand that diet will help. Make sure you get a doctor who is willing to detox you naturally….that will help greatly. I know PAM will help you with all her health knowledge. I’m sure you are also googling….so I will add Dr Tom O’Bryan (autoimmune specialist who also has FB live videos) and THE TRUTH ABOUT CANCER series to your list of things to look up. I’m so glad you are so trusting in the Lord with all of this. HE is the best doctor!!! Blessings to you, my friend! We love you here in NJ!!!!

    • Thanks for sharing my prayer request with your church group(s). I watched the stem cell series, too. After chemo treatments destroy my immune system, I plan to rebuild to being healthy again and maybe try the stem cell treatment. My oncologist’s office group does stem cell treatments, so all in due time. PAM has helped a ton already. I feel and look healthier. No way to reverse the cancer, though, so here we go. I read Dr. O/Bryan’s book in October or November and immediately cut out dairy and gluten. I’m now on the candida diet, which helps even further. Root veggies were causing issues, and I didn’t identify it when following Dr. O’Bryan’s suggestions. Pinpointing problem areas through elimination is extremely hard to identify. Most people don’t want to follow a clean diet because it’s too much work, seems strange, and the sacrifice seems too large. But, once they get sick enough, they’ll do anything to get healthy again. (I know because that was me.) That’s my theory, and i’m sticking with it! You can’t talk others into it – they have to decide on their own. I’m sorry you had a recurrence of health issues. The basement can wait! I wish you and your parents good health in the future! 🙂

      • I am very glad to hear how proactive you have been! You just don’t know! 🙂 I’m looking forward to your sharing a lot of the candida diet stuff and other helpful tips on ur new blog. I’m still trying to figure out what my root cause is. Some foods still give me that poking feeling in my gut but I can’t figure out which. You know how frustrating that is. Ricki Heller has awesome recipes for the candida diet peeps based on what phase you are in. I haven’t investigated the diet yet (because it’s a bit overwhelming) but might have to because I’m fed up having to deal with this knowing that as long as I feel the “poking” my leaky gut is not healed and I am not going to “get better”. I do not want to progress into more serious auto immune diseases. Brain dog is NOT a normal thing but society says as you age you forget. My grandfather DID NOT FORGET. He died at 94 due to complications from his medicines. But his mind was sharp. You are so right about people having to get sick enough to do something “different”. I say it all the time. I have a hard head son who thinks taking probiotics and glutamine was only til he felt better. He’s too busy. He will learn the hard way, as usual.

        • I never had recognizable symptoms, but as my nutritionist pointed out, I clearly had issues since I developed an autoimmune disease. Touche! Point taken. I hope I can share things that help you. 🙂

  15. Dear Kim, I was thinking of you only yesterday, wondering how you are…hearing of your illnesses is shocking, and of course my heart is hurt thinking of the challenges you are facing. Your faith and acceptance is truly inspiring…Please try to remember all of the prayers we are all sending you as you move forward…❤️

    • Thank you, Jenna. Today is a gorgeous, sunny day, and I’m thankful for each one! Your prayers are so helpful and appreciated. God will get me through this. Take care, my friend. 🙂

  16. Dearest Kim, I’ve been sad for you that you are going through these hard trials but you are amazing with such strength and trust! I was encouraged by the song you shared as well as all the comments. You are teaching me so many things. The tears are flowing and I don’t know what to say. I have been praying and promise to pray for you all the time. I know you feel like Job.
    Our Sunday School lesson yesterday was on healing. It said that sickness either our own or a loved one’s presents an opportunity to grow in faith. We study Master Work and this series is taken from Gregg Matte’s, I Am changes who i am. He is senior pastor of First Baptist,Houston, TX. This was written: “So, how do you pray when healing is needed?Jesus, I know you can heal. I pray you would heal. Remember it brings God glory when we ask for things that only He can do. When you pray for healing, ask with confidence, knowing that He is able.”
    I pray for healing for you. Thank you for your witness.

    • I love how James says to consider the trials of life as great joy because it develops patience and endurance, which leads to a deeper faith. Your SS lesson is such a great reminder to ask in His will and without wavering like being tossed at sea. We can stand firm on God’s promises! Thank you for your support and prayers. They mean so much to me. I truly don’t feel like Job since I have so much to be thankful for. Family and friends (even friends I’ve never met but feel like I know personally through blog comments) give me constant encouragement! I know there is strength in prayer, and it seems so many are praying. God gives us great confidence because He is faithful and true! Thank you, friend! 🙂

  17. Dear Kim

    I am sorry to hear of your illness(es). I hope that you will not suffer too much pain and discomfort.
    I have thoroughly enjoyed reading your thoughts and “how to’s”
    Kindest regards
    Sue

    • I appreciate your kind note, Sue. After the pain Jesus suffered on the cross, how can any pain I have compare? Thank you for your encouragement. 🙂

  18. Dear Sister in Christ (and sister in needle & thread),
    There is no way to describe the compassion I feel for you as you journey through your cancer battle. My husband was diagnosed with non small cell lung cancer Stage IIIb in May 2017. With a lot of prayers and chemo he is on the cancer free side now. We lean hard on the Lord when each follow up scan nears knowing that every day is a gift. You have blessed my life and sewing with your many helpful tips so I want to offer you one for your treatments. You’ll probably be on the same drugs my husband was on.. His main side effect from his chemo was neuropathy in his feet and little in his finger tips. Someone recommended Elasto Gel Mittens and boots to be worn during the chemo treatment to keep the chemicals out of the nerves in that area. We didn’t use them at first because the symptoms seemed minor and reversible, but as the treatments went on the symptoms were more severe and did not reverse. I wish he had used them earlier. We froze them overnight and carried them with us in a cooler. We bought two sets so that we could change them out as they warmed up during the time we were there for his treatment. I ordered them through Amazon. After researching chemo induced neuropathy I also added Vitamin C, B1, B2, B12 supplements along with 2 tablets of Acetyl L Carnitine (an amino acid) available at GNC. I’ll be praying for you.

    • Yes, the doctor mentioned possible neuropathy. Thank you for sharing about the mittens. I’ll look into those and order the mits and socks, too. So, it’s only necessary to wear them during treatments, not also for a little while after? I’m to get a monthly B12 injection, but I’ll add more vit C and a B complex. A neutricianist is helping me prepare my body for chemo and has supplied many other things, along with the amino acid. You have been very helpful. I appreciate all your great advice! It’s wonderful to hear of your husband’s success story. I will pray for his continued clear scans! I know how nerve-racking that can be. Never been so scared in my life as the day of the PET scan! :-/ (God is the conqueror of all fear, so I’ll now prepare myself with scripture in advance.) Thanks again for all your advice! 🙂

  19. Oh Kim,
    I feel like someone has just punched me in the gut. The same way I felt 9 years ago when my son-in-law developed Acute AML at age 41. We have a very difficult time understanding when bad things happen to good people. Of course Christ was without sin and offered Himself up in redemption for mankind. This is a lot to take in for you, your family and me.
    I can’t tell you how much I appreciate you being so kind to share so many beautiful things with us. I still want to re do my husband’s carpenters chest, and I sure did use the Walmart vacuum cleaner you found. You have been such a source of good things in life and certainly a source of inspiration to all of us. I have added your name to my prayer bowl, and want you to know I pray for God’s healing and comfort through this journey. I pray you feel His hand in yours, and His wonderful Blessings everyday. I always think about the song, “Blessings” by Laura Story And “Holy Heart” .
    Know that you are in my thoughts and prayers each day. I shall follow your posts and hopefully steady progress. Our Mark was on a ventilator when he arrived in Charleston. I never expected him to walk out. He had gone to a local doctor 2 days prior thinking he had a virus and just feeling bad. His platelets were so low, he started bleeding in his lung and required intubation in the ambulance to Charleston. He went on to undergo chemo, stem cell, chemo again and a Bone Marrow Transplant. That was 9 years ago and he suffers with GVHD which has attacked his vision and lungs. With God’s blessings, he has held on for his 2 young boys. They are now 22 and 15. He never complained and always said, Nanny, it’s a good day if I’m up walking”. We watched miracles happen, but it hasn’t been easy and he isn’t well, but we are so thankful for this time God gave us. It puts you on your knees.
    Praying for God’s healing, and keep your deep, abiding faith.
    God’s Blessings to you,
    Mary

    • Thank you so much for sharing that, Mary. Life is so stinkin’ hard sometimes! I’m glad to hear Mark is still here for his family – kids especially. Your prayers are such a blessing – the gift that keeps on giving, so to speak. God reveals His goodness every single day. 🙂

  20. Kim,
    I was wondering about you again last week. I can certainly understand why this has been difficult to wrap your mind around and share and my heart hurts for you. Although we know the LORD is always with us and never leaves us and will use all things for our good and His glory, the trials of this life are just that, difficult, heart breaking, terrifying….and you know this only too well. When I read your post this morning, I immediately sent your name and situation out to my SS class. We have a wonderful prayer chain. We will pray for you. Prayer is an amazing privilege and part of our relationship with our Heavenly Father. I am so thankful that you are my Sister-in-Christ and I know that our Father loves you beyond comprehension; that He will walk this journey with you; hold you in His scarred hands that conquered death and teach you great and wonderful things about His character and nature that could only come because of this journey. I know that not only can we trust Him but that He is trustworthy too. I shared with my SS class that you and I became friends because we had a lot in common. I love you even though we have never met face to face and I hurt for you and your family. You have a very special depth of faith, so God knows you can weather this storm and that you will always give Him the glory. Praying for you and your family in my neck of north Mississippi…
    Love, Rhonda

    • I appreciate you sharing me with your praying friends! It was wonderful to read your reminders of our God and how He’ll reveal Himself in new ways through this. I hope to do Him justice by giving Him the glory at every turn. We need never to ask God why He allows certain things. His purposes are supreme, and His love is endless! Thank you for your encouragement, dear friend. 🙂

  21. My Dear dear Kim, I cannot match the lovely comments and encouraging odes written by so many followers. I can’t top them, only applaud and agree those so well written, so encouraging and so filled with ideas and knowledge about what to eat, vitamins, and other helpful avenues to steady and speed your health journey.
    I think of your many many posts; always so lovely and pretty, full of cheer and encouragement for all to take. One can see your generous smile shinning through each posting. I know it was fun to create those and I believe they will come back and provide an uplifting smile when you are reminded of what went on at that time – kind of a life diary – that chapter of your life.
    Pace yourself my dear friend, this is a new chapter, a growth time. From your responses to comments above, it sounds like you’ve to surrendered yourself, give the glory to God and look for the silver lining at each ebb and turn – of which there will be many. But that doesn’t mean you won’t wonder, why me? what the ** now? REALLY??? It’s okay to wonder all of those things too. Do you have a dammit doll?
    Slam her into smithereens it’s good therapy too. Let me know if you don’t have one I’ll send one and when she’s smithereens I send another and another…
    YOU are Loved by so many and especially the Lord. I love you and your creative, kind hearted spirit, wisdom and christian strength. Debi

    • Oh, my dear Debi. You sure know how to make a girl cry! It’s humbling to hear so many sweet comments from many (including you) who are very special to me. I see this as a time to keep my pace slow and focus on taking care of myself. After chemo destroys my body, my goal will be to rebuild from the inside out with God’s help, including spiritually. God called me to start Curtain Queen Creates, and I knew it was for a season. I believe He doesn’t bring an end to something without providing a new beginning of the next thing He has for us to do. I am hopeful that the next phase of life will be just as fulfilling as before this “pause”. Thank you for your friendship for these years past. I look forward to keeping in touch for many more. Much love, my friend! 🙂

  22. So when I finally got around to reading e-mails again I was so shocked to learn of your recent doctor visits, testing results, etc. I feel as if I’m your neighbor and friend and it broke my heart to hear your news. I will be praying for you as you pass through on this journey. Life can be surprising at times for sure and we never know what will happen next. I wish you God’s calm and blessings as only He can give as you go through this time. Peace be with you and yours.
    Much love and prayers,
    Belinda

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