The Voice
Anna's Lipstick Journey
by Anna
1M ago
What are your gifts, passions, and talents? I believe everyone has something they’re really good at whether it’s cooking, socializing, hospitality, a sport, etc. At the very least you have something you LOVE to do whether you’re good at it or not. I used to sing. I LOVED to sing. Singing for me used to be like breathing (both of which are now difficult for me since cancer). Growing up, I had plenty of opportunities to sing. It was my special gift, my passion, and because I’m a melancholy introvert, it was how I expressed myself and my emotion I could be who I wanted to be. I could bare my so ..read more
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Producer, Director, Audience
Anna's Lipstick Journey
by Anna
8M ago
This weekend I visited my youngest child for his family weekend at his university. I was super weepy most of the weekend, breaking down in tears at random times, and really, all of the time. I can’t really describe it as sadness, but more a combination of overwhelming joy at seeing him in his element and brokenhearted because I miss him. My other son flew into town too so both my boys were with me…oh my heart. Beautiful and brutal. With my dad’s sudden passing earlier this year the reality that life is incredibly short is at the top of my mind, not to mention having Stage four cancer. I hate ..read more
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Plunging Through Grief
Anna's Lipstick Journey
by Anna
1y ago
I lost two greats within 6 weeks of each other, my dad who I wrote about in my last blog, and then my dog, Moose. Both were diagnosed with cancer out of nowhere and both passed away quickly after diagnosis; my dad 11 weeks after and my dog, 5 days after-just a little over a week ago. It has been a lot. There are moments the sadness overwhelms me, sometimes without warning. Losing Moose was the tip of the iceberg, and I honestly wasn’t sure I could bounce back from all the grief I’ve collected over the years. Moose was my comfort after my Stage 4 diagnosis, through Alex’s stroke, the global pa ..read more
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Hello Again
Anna's Lipstick Journey
by Anna
1y ago
I had to look back to see the last time I wrote a blog, and it was July, just after I got the results telling me that my cancer was still stable after 5 years; those dumb nodules on my lungs are not really growing or at least not growing very quickly. I’ll take it. Writing has always been a release for me and a way to process my feelings, but this year it’s been tough to write, and I think maybe it’s because I have too many feelings to process. Before, it was just having cancer 4 times, motherhood, divorce, a child with a life changing health event (which was already a lot), but then the pand ..read more
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5
Anna's Lipstick Journey
by Anna
2y ago
Five years. Five years ago this month I got the devastating news that my cancer was back for the fourth time, but it had spread to my lungs putting me in the category of Stage 4, Metastatic thyroid cancer with distant metastasis. This is rare, occurring in less than 10% of thyroid cancer patients. The statistics are not great; 50% gone in 5 years, 90% gone in 10. I did molecular testing on my tumors and they showed the BRAF v600 mutation (lots of science) but basically, cancers with this mutation tend to be more aggressive. For the first 2 years post diagnosis, I got scans every 3 months, and ..read more
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Life Is A River (and yes I know that’s a lake behind me)
Anna's Lipstick Journey
by Anna
2y ago
We just moved. It’s been a lot and I didn’t think it would be, but so many changes have happened over the 2+ years of pandemic. I can’t seem to push past some of the sad days but there have been so many good ones. Warning, this may be a super rambling blog, so sorry not sorry. I’ve had lots of thoughts swirling in my mind so I’m writing to actually clear it up and put it out there. First, it’s Lent. Last year I did some amazing Lenten devotionals (from Kate Bowler and Erin Moon), and they were so helpful in quieting my mind and keeping my heart in focus of the season. I grew up Catholic and w ..read more
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Hello 2022
Anna's Lipstick Journey
by Anna
2y ago
It has been a LONG time since I’ve written a blog post and honestly, I wasn’t sure if I would ever write another, but here I am. The last blog I wrote was right around the time Alex left for school making us empty nesters. Since then, I’d like to say that I’ve enjoyed all this ‘independent time’ not having to think about meals, sporting events, clothes for homecoming or prom, etc., but I haven’t. For the last 6 months I’ve been mostly sad. Not only are we in what seems like an endless global pandemic, but I also have cancer; both pointing toward a daily life of uncertainty. Time is my love la ..read more
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Empty Nest (yes I’m crying)
Anna's Lipstick Journey
by Anna
3y ago
By the end of this week I will be an empty nester. Who came up with that name? I don’t think I like it. Plus, if it’s being compared to a birds nest, that implies they never come back. Am I wrong? Also, don’t mama birds shove their babies off and force them to fly when they’re ready? Ok. There were/are definitely times I’d love to shove the kids into the world and force them to fly but there are times I equally if not more, want to hold on and squeeze them in a hug and force them to just stay near. ‘The greatest gifts you can give your children are the roots of responsibility and the wings of ..read more
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What I Can’t Un-see
Anna's Lipstick Journey
by Anna
3y ago
It has been a LONG time since I’ve written a blog. I thought since we were ‘shut down’ for so long I’d have all the time in the world to blog but because we all lived with so much uncertainty and the days felt like the combination of doing nothing and extremely busy, I spent lots of time just staring at the screen then turning it off. But here I am again, trying to infuse normalcy into my not so normal world. My younger son graduates high school this weekend. I have been on an emotional roller coaster for maybe a month now. I’m not sure if the reason is all him, or if it’s everything opening ..read more
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Tears and Magic
Anna's Lipstick Journey
by Anna
3y ago
I lost someone dear to me last week and I cried for almost a half an hour after I found out. Then I cried again today. When you are a cancer fighter, and if you’re like me who has battled cancer more than once, you become close to some if not all of your healthcare providers, especially if you see the same people year after year. Dr. Menaldi was one of those people. If you don’t know already, I was a long time singer when I got cancer the first time. I sang at local events, church, radio jingles, was on a tv show, and was involved in musical theater. After my first surgery for cancer, my righ ..read more
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