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Meet Jodie

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It's time to meet another member here on our community. This month we're pleased to introduce you to Jodie - better known on our community as jorola. Here's more about Jodie, in her own words.


Hi there! I’m Jodie. I am the proud wife and caregiver to my husband Mick, a lung cancer survivor.
 
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He was diagnosed April 20, 2014 with non-small cell squamous lung cancer stage 3 b after pneumonia and a collapsed lung sent him to the ER.
 
I was devastated at the news. You see, Mick is the love of my life and we just met 8 years prior to his diagnosis. The thought of losing him shook me to the core. At first I was not the strong or supportive one. He was though. It was the wrong way around! I knew I had to get my act together. As his treatment continued, he would grow weaker and he would need me! I suffered from depression prior to this and had a psychiatrist treating me. Between him, my family doctor, family and friends and yes supportive online forums like this, I found my feet again. I did what I needed to do for me so I could be the best caregiver for Mick. This is why now I am such a strong advocate for caregivers getting support for themselves. Caregiving is hard emotionally and physically. To be on top of our game we need to take care of ourselves too.

 
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With the wonderful talented people at the Cross Cancer Institute in Edmonton and a positive go get’em attitude by my husband and solid team work, he was confirmed NED – no evidence of disease – in December 2014.
 
And what did we do in the middle of all of this? Got married naturally! July 19, 2014. This month will be our 2nd anniversary!

 
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Together we have three grown children, 1 girl – Jean (24) and 2 boys – Kyle (22) and Corey (18), 1 granddaughter Alizabel (Jean’s) and 3 fur babies! We live in St. Albert, AB in a quaint older home with original hardwood floors and a HUGE backyard for my gardens and the puppies. Mick and I have always preferred the simple life. Nothing complicated, just the basics.

 
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I spend my time working in my gardens – veggies and flowers. There I can spend hours in peaceful bliss. I recently took up cross stitching and jewellery making and thoroughly enjoy it, spending hours at it. I am also a moderator on another forum which keeps me busy in the evening responding to posts and answering questions the best I can. Sharing my experiences in hopes of helping others is my way of giving back to those who helped me. I also think it is my way of getting back at this horrible disease
 
My favourite thing to do though – just have quiet time with Mick. Sometimes it is just watching a favourite show together (yep Game of Thrones or Supernatural -k that one is more mine than his), cuddling with the puppies and talking quietly or just sitting next to each other outside on the deck – lately watching all the lightning storms.

 
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As you can see from my posts in Caturdays and Dogday Afternoons, my puppies are my other loves in my life. Ralph, my big guy, is an Australian Kelpie, Bruiser, my little chub chub, is a chihuahua/dachshund cross and Sherman, my little guy, is my 4 lb chihuahua/yorkie cross. Each as their own personality. Ralph is the big goof, Bru is the boss/sheriff and Sherman is the little mischief maker. Good thing we have a king size bed as Bru and Sherman sleep with us and Ralph sleeps on the floor guarding the door – not that he has not tried to crawl in too sometimes! Our fur babies are so special to us and often the kids are jealous. Interestingly Bru began acting very funny around Mick 2 months before he was diagnosed. He would not leave Mick alone and had to always be almost touching him if not touching him. We honestly believe Bru knew something was wrong before anyone else. Now I have read where scientists have found dogs can actually smell and detect cancer cells out of multiple samples. See they are not just cuddle babies!

                    Ralph (big guy) and Sherman (little guy)                        Sherman

 
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Bruiser


Well that is a bit and a half about me. Remember – survivor or caregiver – take care of yourself.
 
Peace and comfort to everyone.







We'd like to thank Jodie for sharing her story and photos with us. If you are interested in being featured in one of our monthly Meet your Neighbour posts, please send a private message to Nicole_admin, or email us at cancerconnection@cancer.ca.




Comments

Thank you for your kind comments Richard. Big hugs and congrats on 16 years!!! I found your post this month very honest and heart felt. I understand how your world crumbled as mine did too. Don't feel guilty for taking that time for yourself. I know it is hard but this is how a caregiver makes it through. Remember a burnt out caregiver is no good to anyone. Even though Mick is doing well I continue to do things to take care of me. Like I said I already suffered from depression and this really threw me. I was stable for so long. But i did once before I can do it again. Teamwork. Mickey and Me
  • Posted Sun 25 Sep 2016 03:02 PM EDT
oh did not know i had only so much room to type so to add... online really helped me but i can see face to face being even more helpful (no offense to this or any other online place) as you can get that deeper connection with people. So go for it. You can do this Richard! let me know how it goes. Peace and comfort to you and your family. And sorry i did not see your post sooner!
  • Posted Sun 25 Sep 2016 03:06 PM EDT
Hi Jodi,

I just read your post. Thank you for sharing. When my wife was diagnosed with her brain tumor my world crumbled. We will be celebrating 16 years of marriage in a few weeks. We have two sons, 17 and 14 years old. Like you, we received tremendous support from family and friends. I found solace and comfort in joining this group but I am probably going to look for a face to face group to compliment this group. I am happy for you and your family. Stay strong and good luck!
  • Posted Wed 21 Sep 2016 11:44 AM EDT

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