A Work In Progress

A Work In Progress

Sunday, December 31, 2017

2017 - A Year of Great Change and Personal Growth

One would think that 2016 would have been our year with the most change.  I mean, we bought a house and adopted a "special needs" rescue dog!  Well, 2017 was equally a huge year of change for us, but it had a much more profound affect on my view of life.  Financial Security is something I didn't have until after I got Married and we got debt free a year later.  Then we saved and traveled, and finally bought our 1st home on April 8th of 2016.  The Blessing is that since I didn't have credit cards, my Name is on the Title, but it is not on the loan.  My Income didn't count when it came to purchasing our home.  We lived below our means, including the size/price of house we chose to buy.  Jonathan could have been approved for a more expensive house, but we didn't want to be "house poor".  

I started babysitting at the age of 12 and started buying my own clothes then.  I started working at at 16.  I worked in college, over breaks, and during the summers as well.  I started working Full Time as soon as I graduated college.  Besides for a total of 9 months throughout the years, I have always been employed Full Time.  I waitressed for 6 Months before I was finally given a job offer at LM. My job at LM was there when I needed it.  They have amazing benefits, etc.  I met my Husband there.  I will be eternally grateful that I was hired there and found Love (and Friendship) at LM!    This job was there for me when I needed it and I was employed for 9.5 years.  That's a long time for me.  The detailed work was so me, but the putting in headphones and focusing and sitting at a desk 37.5 hours a week was not a good fit for this Extrovert.  But I stayed where life was "safe and comfortable and secure".  I mean after all, I was making GOOD Money.  

Something wasn't right though.  I constantly sat there obsessing about my Mom's cancer, my BIL's Cancer, my Step Dad's Grand Mal Seizure.  All heavy stuff, right?  Well my mind literally could not stop obsessing.  Part of the reason being, was if my Family needed me and I left work 3 hours early, I would get a full incident against me.  It would be as if I hadn't shown up for work at all that day.  After like 5.75 incidents you get a verbal warning, and the consequences got stiffer the more incidents you got.  FMLA is only used for your own medical condition, or if you are the primary caregiver for a relative.  I couldn't get FMLA when Jonathan's Dad was sick and dying.  There were other Family issues that were going on at the same time too.

It all caught up to me, and I just couldn't do it anymore.  I saw my Counselor.  I saw my Dr, who I ended up firing, and I fought for my mental health.  I was on Short Term Disability, but after a short while, my Husband and I came to the conclusion, that what was best for me, was for me to resign from my job at LM.  It took 3 months to get in to see a Psych NP.  My new MD made some med changes, but my Psych NP actually put me on Aderall.   Yes, at the age of 43 I was diagnosed with ADD.  My Husband was very surprised how productive I was at home during the day.  You know why?  Because I'm a hard worker, but my ADD made it nearly impossible to focus at a desk job, not talking to people.  When it came to running errands, making appointments, etc, I was uber productive.  And you know what?  I didn't obsess about all of the cancer and illness in my Family.  I was too busy to obsess.  

It was a very long Summer waiting for approval for my STD after every Dr Appt.  Always being afraid it would be denied.  Psych issues are treated so much differently than physical issues.  I know this is 2017.....2018 in a few hours, but it's true.  I was only on STD for less than 3 months when my Husband and I reached the decision, that I needed to quit my job.  It wasn't for me.  It didn't fit my personality.  It didn't allow for me to leave and be there for my Family if they needed me.  It didn't allow for me to call in sick when I could hardly function, not if I wanted to keep the job.  I resigned as soon as we made the decision.  I resigned on August 21st and I haven't once regretted my decision.  Even my Husband says we don't really miss my income.  Why?  Because we live below our means.  My Husband is Happier.  I am Happier.  If my Sister in WI needs me, I can drive to WI.  If my Mom or Grandma need me, I can be there for them, without receiving an incident.

Lessons Learned in 2017...I mean REALLY Learned:

1.  Peace is more important than Money.
2.  Family comes first...before Money..before a Job.
3.  It takes a leap of Faith and Trust in God, but He will provide.  No...please don't quit your job if you live alone and say....well Jen said......!  I supported myself for years.  I am the saver in our relationship.

I am Happy..  I am at Peace.  I was Diagnosed with ADD.  I am a hard worker.

I started my small business called J-La-Sta's Thrifty Threads on September 26th of 2017.  I love bargain hunting!  I love meeting new people.  I love serving others.  I love having a more flexible schedule where Family comes first.  I am not making anywhere near the amount of money I made working Full Time at Liberty, but you know what?  2017 taught me that Peace is FAR more important than money!  My security rests in my Savior, not in LM, and not in the Money I received from LM.  I work my butt off now.  I may not get the same amount of money, but this job fits the flexible lifestyle I need and want now.  Thank you Jonathan, for letting me quit LM and for realizing it was the best move for us!  I Love You! :-)

I also learned that I'm stronger than I think I am.  Being mentally ill, and having sick Family Members, one learns who their true Friends are.  Thank you to those who were there for me during one of the darkest and most challenging times in my life.  Please fight for yourself and your health, because no one else will.  I had to fight hard for months to get the care I need, when I barely had the energy to get out of bed.  I had a MD (after I told her I couldn't function and I was crying in front of her nonstop) say to me "So you are going back to work tomorrow right?"  Even if your Dr doesn't get it, keep fighting to get the help you need.

Peace and Happiness are Far More Important than Money.  I am Blessed.  We are Blessed.  I've only been running my small business for 3 months, but I hope to continue to grow it in the future.  I'm a hard worker, just a hard worker with ADD and an Extroverted Personality.  I did what I had to do when I had to do it, for 9.5 years, and now......I'm doing what I GET to do.

My Goals for 2018 are to grow my Business and to lose weight I gained as a result of giving into cravings caused by new meds.  I want to be healthier again.  However, I have also learned that my weight doesn't define me.

Happy New Year Everyone!  I Hope that 2018 is a Year Full of Happiness and Blessings Beyond Measure for you!

~ J-LaSta

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Debbie's Quick Caring Bridge Update

Journal entry by Debbie Heiman — 
We want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas! We hope you all had a chance to spend time with loved ones.

We are so blessed to spend another Christmas with Scott! What a special gift from God!

I had a friend point out to me that I had a space in Karen's Caring Bridge website. If you want to stay posted on Scott's Mom and her recovery, please visit:


There is no space or dash between Karen and heiman, but it keeps showing one.

Thank you for your continued prayers for Scott and Karen! They are greatly appreciated! 

Scott has a PET scan on January 8th, so it gets more and more nerve racking as the time approaches. God is in control of all things and will work it all out for our good.

Sunday, December 24, 2017

I Will Not Be Shaken!

Psalm 16:8New Living Translation (NLT)

 I know the Lord is always with me.
    I will not be shaken, for he is right beside me.

     The Weekend of December 3rd my Husband and I went to Nashville, IN and Brown County State Park.  We had never been there before.  Nashville, IN was truly a Lovely Little Town, with lots of unique shops!  We shopped for most of the day on Saturday.  We bought some Christmas/Birthday presents for Friends and Family, and a few things for ourselves.  After Breakfast on Sunday, I wanted to go back to my two favorite stores before we went hiking at Brown County State Park (the Largest State Park in the State of Indiana).  

     Saturday I bought 2 Pendants for Friends of mine.  Both were clearly meant for them, and one God especially tugged on my heart to buy for my Friend.  On Sunday, after I entered the store and looked around a bit, I thought I might look to get one for myself.  Jonathan and I sometimes pick out some of our own Christmas presents together.  It took me forever to decide!  I must have had 20 pendants on a tray to choose from! I would put each one back until I narrowed it down to this one. Then I chose a chain, and it was then they told me I could choose charms to add to my necklace, but that they would need to assemble it.
     I chose the main Pendant because God spoke to me thru this verse.  No matter what happens to me or to my Family or my extended Family, because the Lord is with me "I will not be shaken".  There are lots of life experiences that can and have shaken me to the core;  Death of loved ones, cancer diagnoses of loved ones, horrible accidents that affect those I love deeply.  My Depression, Anxiety, and ADD can also shake me, so this verse just brought comfort to my heart.  With God beside me, I will not be shaken!  Does this mean these things won't affect me?  Absolutely Not!  If these things didn't affect me in some way, I wouldn't be human.  Life is tough, but God is Faithful.

     I'm a numbers nerd, so I started wearing this on December 8th.  The Bible Verse on the Pendant is from Psalm 16:8.  My Dad died on December 8th and 1 plus 6 = 7.  Jonathan and I got engaged 7 years ago this Month.  This pendant and what it stands for, comforts me.  I chose the other charms based on the following...the cross represents my Faith.  The "J" is for Jennifer.  The green pearl matches a color in the pendant and I love my dog!  I've been wearing this necklace, pendant, and charms almost everyday, and it brings me such Joy and comfort!

I hope this verse comforts you as well, no matter what you might be going thru.

Psalm 16:8New Living Translation (NLT)

 I know the Lord is always with me.
    I will not be shaken, for he is right beside me.

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Prayers Requested for Scott's (my BIL) Mom

Here is my Sister Debbie's Prayer Request Regarding her MIL:

Journal entry by Debbie Heiman — 1 hour ago
I am asking for prayers for Scott's Mom - Karen Heiman. On Thursday night, she fell down the stairs at home. She suffered a serious head injury. She also has fractured bones around her eyes, on her arm, and her pelvis.

She is still being sedated. She is in the ICU, and is in good hands at the hospital. 

Our family drove up north this morning so that Scott and I could see her and spend the day with Gary. 

God has a perfect plan for all of us and we rest in his promises! We pray for her complete healing, if it be God's will. 

Thank you for your thoughts and prayers in advance!

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Debbie's (My Sister) November & December Caring Bridge Updates on Scott

Journal entry by Debbie Heiman — 11/10/2017

I have to say that this continued break in treatment has been so nice!  I realized that I haven't updated since September 22. So much has happened during that time, but not much healthwise for Scott thankfully!

 Since I last updated about Lexi, she was hit in the face with a volleyball a second time. It happened on October 4th, the day that she was to be cleared to play again. She has been visiting a concussion clinic ever since, and was even a part of a trial study for children who have had concussions and are suffering long term affects. Hopefully it will help other children who have suffered concussions. She sees a physical therapist, who is trying to help her with some neck pain and headaches.  She has still not been cleared, but we hope that with all of the therapy she will be cleared soon. 

 On October 15, I threw a surprise 40th birthday party for Scott. He had no idea it was coming, and it was truly an amazing day! He deserves that and so much more! He is truly a remarkable man.  He is not always completely honest about how he is feeling, but I  can you read him pretty well,  and I truly believe that he has been feeling good. 

 We are trying to live in the moment, and not think about the scan in January. That is not always an easy task, but more and more days go by that I don't even think about his cancer. That is a blessing that I can't even begin to explain! 

 Scott received some amazing gifts for his birthday, including tickets to a Packer game this Sunday at Soldier Field, and a gift card to the Signature Room in Chicago. It is my first Packer game ever! I'm praying that the forecast for rain is wrong.

Scott and I will be leaving tonight to head to Chicago for the weekend. I am so excited! We think that we will spend Saturday at the aquarium in Chicago. This should be quite a memorable weekend for us, and I'm so blessed to be spending this time with him!

My Mom has been in constant treatment, and continues to battle with pain. She is strong and pushes herself daily, however, even going to workout daily. She is truly an inspiration!

I have a prayer request for my Aunt Sharon. She lives in Elkhart, IN with my Uncle Bill. This past Sunday, at a Reformation service, she went into cardiac arrest and needed to be revived. We are all so thankful that by the Grace of God, her life was spared. Everyone at the church acted quickly and calmly from what I hear. She is still hospitalized and waiting to have another procedure. My Mom has relayed positive news to me about her improvements. Please pray with our family for a full recovery! We love you Aunt Sharon!!!

I will try to keep this page updated more often for those who look for updates. I appreciate continued prayers for Scott, Lexi, my Mom and Aunt Sharon! Prayers is so powerful, as we've witnessed in our 2 1/2 year battle. God grant us the strength to keep fighting and NEVER give up!

Love to all from the Heimans 💛

Journal entry by Debbie Heiman — 12/8/2017
18 years ago today, my Dad was called home to heaven. It saddens me to think of everything that he has missed in my life, since I was a 21 year old college student at the time. It was exam week, and I was a senior heading into my semester of student teaching. Those were rough times, but I got through it. 

I hope that my Dad would be proud of the wife, mother and now caregiver that I have become! I want to make my Dad proud and live my life to God's glory. I know that's what my Dad would want for all of us! He was such a faithful man, and would be proud of the faithful leadership that Scott has in our family.

Scott has been fighting for 2 years and 8 months already. We are currently in a pretty good place. We're enjoying our time together and loving the treatment free days. His hours at work have slowed down, but he's still going to work every day. It's so awesome to have him home early every day though! The kid's moods have been so much better with him being home more. I love it! It really makes me much happier too!

We pray that the good days can continue. We will find out a month from today when Scott has his PET scan. We will get the results on January 10th.

Scott has been so amazing with the kids! He's definitely enjoying them as they get older and he can joke around with them and they can laugh together. It truly warms my heart to see him interact with them. Sometimes I wish I was the fun parent, but I'll let him savor in the  glory. 😉 

It's hard to believe that he has cancer most days. He looks so healthy and strong. He never skips a beat! The fact that his liver has had so much cancer in it for over 2 1/2 years, yet is functioning so well, is truly a miracle in my opinion. It's nothing short of God's amazing Grace! HE is so good to us!

We will be spending a lot of quality family time together over the Christmas break. I'm so thankful for the opportunity to spend this time together. I pray for safe travels with all of the driving that we'll be doing to IN, MI, and MN. It will be great to see so much family.

I may not post again until January. If that's the case, we wish you all a Blessed Christmas, pray for safe travels wherever you may be going, and much love to all!

Friday, September 22, 2017

Debbie's Caring Bridge Post - Results for Lexi, Mom and Scott

Journal entry by Debbie Heiman — 1 hour ago

I'll start by updating about our 14 year old Lexi. She got a concussion during volleyball practice on Monday, September 11th. She also hurt her neck when she got hit in the face with the ball. She had a follow up x-ray and met with a neurologist today. She is doing much better and was able to take the neck brace off for most of the day. If she feels good and has no pain, she can leave it off. However, they want her to have it in her locker in case her neck starts hurting, so she can wear it for support.

She will be cleared to play volleyball as soon as she is completely pain free. She is still having headaches. They said she should rotate between Ibuprofen and Tylenol as needed. She also was told many times to stay hydrated!!! Drink lots of water, because like a car, water is the gas that makes us run.

Next is my Mom's update. My Mom has bone cancer. She has tumors on her spine, which cause her a lot of pain. She has been undergoing chemo and radiation recently. She had a scan on Wednesday and got the results today. The good news is that 3 of the tumors on her spine shrunk a little. 2 remained the same. The bad news is that there is one new tumor. The doctor doesn't know why a new tumor would show up during treatment, while other tumors are shrinking. They will be performing a needle biopsy sometime soon to check and see if it's a different kind of cancer than the other tumors. Please keep my Mom and Don in your prayers! It's been such a long time that she's been battling cancer! It will be 18 years at the beginning of the year. She's quite an amazing woman, if I do say so myself!!!

Last, but not least, I'll fill you in on Scott's recent results. First I'll tell you that on Tuesday, September 12th, Scott turned 40. That is a huge deal for us. We're so thankful that he's come so far and is doing so well currently!

Our nurse practitioner walked into the room with 2 thumbs up. I said, "Are you serious?!?" Both Julie and Scott said, "I don't think we would joke about something like this." She said his scan was completely stable once again! For those who are new to our journey, stable means that his liver still has inoperable tumors, but no new tumors were found in his peritoneum (abdominal area). He had surgery in June 2016 to remove all of the tumors in his peritoneum. I believe this is a true miracle and blessing from our good and gracious Savior!

She told us that we don't have to do anything right now, and that he will have a PET scan in 3 months. That would put us at December 20th. She said that they just don't do scans a couple of days before Christmas. That's fine with us. He will have a PET scan on January 8th and we'll get results on January 10th.

He has to go every 6 weeks to have his meta port flushed and make sure that both the inner and outer port are still functioning properly for future use. His labs looked excellent as well. His one liver number is slowly getting closer to normal counts. It was very elevated after surgery and slowly but surely is coming down. All in all, the news is amazing!

We talked about why we aren't doing any maintenance chemo right now. They said that you do what works. Being treatment free is working well for us. There is no proof that he would be any better off doing chemo. He feels so much better when he isn't in treatment, and his quality of life is so much better. He hasn't had treatment since March and has remained stable. Praise be to God! This doesn't work for everyone, that's for sure, but it's working for Scott.

Our prayer is that Scott remains healthy and fever free throughout the winter. We also pray that he is able to enjoy an additional 3 1/2 months of feeling pretty good and hopefully remains free of pain.

God hears all of your prayers and we are so thankful for all of the love and support that we have. I told Scott that God's not done with him yet. I believe he has great plans for Scott, and I can't wait to see what he has planned for Scott's future and for our family. We will continue to hope and pray for many more years with Scott. He is such a blessing to so many! I can't think of one person who doesn't like him. He is a remarkable guy. Of course I'm biased though. The kids and I just love him with all of our hearts!

Saturday, August 12, 2017

August Updates - Part 2 - Scott's Good News!

All good news!

Journal entry by Debbie Heiman — 8/9/2017
 I don't have time to do a detailed update right now, but wanted those of you who are wondering to know that today went very well. All of the news that we received was positive, and we are so thankful! I will update tonight before bed hopefully. 

God has been so good to us!

Journal entry by Debbie Heiman — 8/10/2017
When we met with Dr. Mogal this morning, he told us that the CT scan Scott had in the hospital last week was compared with his last scan. Looking at the liver tumors, everything remained stable!

They saw no new growth in his peritoneum. They are hoping that what they saw in his peritoneum was just scar tissue. There is really no way of being 100% sure.

Dr. Mogal told us that we would wait 3 months and then have an MRI. I said, "3 more months without treatment or a scan?" He said yes. He said that we could talk with Dr. Charlson and if he wanted to do sooner, that was ok, but he wouldn't do it right away.

We then met with Dr. Charlson. I expressed my concern in waiting 3 more months without doing ANYTHING. Dr. Charlson said that we could do a scan now or in 6 weeks. Scott would love to wait 3 months, but we compromised on having an MRI in 6 weeks. The MRI will give us a clearer picture of what is hopefully scar tissue. If Scott begins to have pain or feel symptoms, we can move the scan to a closer date. The MRI will be on September 18th. We get results on September 20th.

We are so thrilled that his scan has remained stable for so long and that Scott gets to enjoy such a long break from treatment! His quality of life has been so good lately, minus the week of feeling terrible. We are enjoying life and loving the treatment free days. 

God has been so good to us! How can you not believe that HE is there with us, taking care of Scott and our family, and answering the prayers of more people than we could even imagine! It truly gives me chills! We pray that this good news continues for a LONG time! 

I am humbled by the grace that he has shown us. This week has been tough. Lexi's good friend Mackenzie lost her Nana on Tuesday, after a battle with cancer. She was only 58 years old. A wonderful man in our congregation just passed away as well. They will both be missed by many, but we are thankful for the blessing of their eternal home in heaven! 

August Updates Part 1 - Leaving Hospital

Journal entry by Debbie Heiman — 8/1/2017
This morning, they put Scott on a clear liquid diet. He tolerated that well, and by 6:30PM, they changed it to a full liquid diet. The full liquid diet adds pudding, ice cream, and strained cream soups (instead of just broth). So far, that is also going well. He has no pain. They removed him from his IV fluids since he is drinking plenty now. This is another step in the direction of going home.

I really think that we'll be able to go home tomorrow. We pray that all goes well with the addition of soft solids tomorrow. Please pray for a good day tomorrow and the clearance to go home. If we do get to go tomorrow, I'm sure it will be in the evening. That would be just fine with us though.

Yesterday and today, we were able to head down to the 2nd floor and sit in the courtyard. It's great to get some fresh air! Scott is in much better spirits today and I even got some grins out of him when I was acting silly. I love making him smile and laugh. It is so hard to see him down in the dumps! 

I feel like Scott and I can do anything when we're by each other's side (with God at the center of our marriage, of course)! We've remained strong through the hardest days. I was thinking about how good I feel when he's around. It doesn't matter what we're doing, I just feel whole when we're together. He makes me happy when skies are grey. He'll never know how much I love him! Please never take my sunshine away. I know, those are kind of the lyrics from "You are my sunshine". I was goofing around and singing that to him. He tried not to smile, but he likes the attention. I know he does! 😉

Well, it's after 11, and I'm tired. I'll post an update tomorrow, especially if we get out of here.

Journal entry by Debbie Heiman — 8/2/2017
I lay here writing my CB in our bed, with Scott sleeping peacefully next to me. I'm so blessed!!! We haven't been in our own bed since Thursday, July 20th. It's great to be home!

This morning, the doctors and nurses said that we would be able to go home after he ate some food. He had a breakfast sandwich, pears, and a mini cheese danish. He ate all of it and felt good afterwards. We were discharged and home around 12:30.

Scott's parents took care of the kids for us while we were in the hospital. His Mom made us tacos for dinner and then we went to Myles' last baseball game for the summer. We're so thankful for what they did for us.

Scott is on a restricted diet. He needs to stay away from raw fruits and vegetables, tough meats/proteins and whole grains. These things are hard to digest and we can't risk another bowel obstruction.

We will return to Froedtert next Wednesday for a follow up visit with the surgical oncologist, Dr. Mogal. We will meet with Dr. Charlson, Scott's oncologist, after that. We found out that the reason Dr. Charlson never came to see us was because he's on vacation. We knew it was very odd that we hadn't heard from him.

Dr. Mogal said that Scott could return to work if he wanted to. I asked to make sure it wouldn't be too much for him. You know what Scott's doing tomorrow, don't you? He hates that he missed 3 days, and wants to get back so he doesn't get any further behind. He is a dedicated manager for sure! What a wonderful example to his employees! I'm so proud of him and what he is capable of accomplishing. It's truly amazing after what he just went through. 

I'll update with more information after our appointments next Wednesday. For now, we pray that what is showing up on his scan is ONLY scar tissue. We need to remain positive and not think negative. 

God Bless each and every one of you for your love, concern, and prayers! God heard our cry and answered by sending us home and making Scott feel so much better.

July Updates on The Race to Cure Sarcoma & Scott's Health (Including a Hospital Stay)

Journal entry by Debbie Heiman — 7/25/2017
Last Sunday, July 16th, was such a special day for our family! Not only was it the day of the race, but my Mom celebrated her 65th birthday! For those of you who don't know, this was a huge milestone for my Mom! She has been battling cancer since she was 47 years old. She is an amazingly strong individual and has fought long and hard. We're so blessed to still have her with us today and pray that she will be with us for a long time.

I had been looking forward to the Race to Cure Sarcoma since I first found out about it. I want to spread awareness for Sarcoma. It is not a cancer that we hear much about, and I want that to change. We need so much more research to be done to find a cure for this deadly disease. We were so blessed to have over 65 people register to run/walk for Team Heimanstrong! We were the largest team at the race, and I'm so grateful for the love and support that was shown to our family! It was the first year that they had it in Oconomowoc. The had over 700 people. I would love to see that number doubled next year. I'll let everyone know about it as soon as I find out when it will be in 2018. We'd love to have you join Team Heimanstrong with us. I will never forget that day!

We are currently on vacation. Every summer, we take a 10 day vacation. Since Scott was diagnosed in April 2015, we have not been able to do much vacationing, especially for 10 days! Scott's treatments took up so much of our time that we could never get away. Since we made the choice to take a break from treatments this summer, here we are, enjoying a 10 day getaway. We feel so blessed to be able to have this time to enjoy our favorite family activity- camping.

We do not look forward to the scan that will be coming up at the end of August, but we pray that God's will be done. He knows what is best for our family, and I pray that it means we hear that Scott's cancer remains stable. That would be the most amazing news that we could hear! 

The fact that Scott is looking and feeling great brings me so much joy! I haven't seen him this happy in a LONG time. This break in treatment is exactly what he needed. We will never regret making this decision. 

Please join me in praying for another month of Scott feeling great and being able to enjoy his treatment free summer. Everyone who has been around Scott lately would probably agree that he is genuinely happy! He is enjoying life and making the most of the time that God is blessing him with. I can't begin to tell you how much I love and adore my amazing husband! He is such a fighter and I'm so proud of him.

Journal entry by Debbie Heiman — 7/31/2017
Our family started vacation at Scott's parents house on Lake Arrowhead. After 3 days, we headed to Lake Wazeecha for 3 days for the annual Heiman family camp. The last 4 days was just our family at Chutes Pond Campground in Oconto County. The whole vacation was wonderful, until Saturday night. 

Scott started to feel nauseous and have some abdominal pain around 3PM. He pushed through it and cooked dinner for us on the campfire, even though he was beginning to feel worse. He even went on a hike to a lookout area that we went to earlier in the day. We told the kid that we would go back in the dark to see the stars. We got back around 10PM. We sat around the fire. The kids had dessert, and then we all went to bed around 11. 

Scott was feeling terrible at bedtime, and the pain was worsening in his abdomen. He began vomiting around midnight and throughout the entire night. By noon, he had stopped vomiting and was completely exhausted!

I had called Scott's Dad by this point, because I knew Scott couldn't drive in his condition. They were still at Lake Wazeecha. I don't know how to drive our 1976 Dodge van. It's a 3 on the tree stick. Gary said that they would finish packing up, take their camper home, and come to us in their Mustang. 

We needed to get Hannah to Camp Bird, which was our original plan for camping only 30 minutes from there. I called my friend Linda who was dropping her daughter Lucy off on Sunday too. She was SO kind to go out of her way to pick Hannah up and take her for us. I'm sad that we didn't get to drop her off. I pray that she has a fun week and doesn't worry too much about her Dad.

Scott's parents arrived to our campsite around 3:15 or so on Sunday. They kindly told us to take the Mustang and get Scott to the ER. Scott wanted to go to Froedtert, so we made it home. He slept most of the trip. They packed our camper up for us, took our kids and dog and went to their house for the night. They will bring everything to West Allis sometime today (since it is already almost 4AM).

Scott and I got to the ER around 7:15PM on Sunday night. They did bloodwork an x-Ray and a CT scan. The bloodwork looked good except for elevated white blood cells. The x-Ray and CT confirmed a bowel obstruction. 

They placed an NG tube in the ER. I wouldn't wish this on anyone! It's hard enough being nauseous. Scott was still vomiting up the IV fluids that they were giving him. It is so hard to see him in pain. 

We were told that we'd be admitted to the 7th floor in the new CFAC building, but around 2:45AM, he was wheeled up to the 5th floor in the main hospital. I wasn't too thrilled about that.

Finally, at 4AM, they just hooked up the suction for the NG tube. He's trying to sleep and remain calm, but it's very difficult. Please pray that we aren't here for long. 

Our oncology team will come and see us tomorrow. They will discuss the CT scan with us in more detail. They weren't able to tell us much in the ER.

Journal entry by Debbie Heiman — 7/31/2017
Thank you for all of the prayers, love and concern that has been shown to us. I have gotten many offers to help in whatever way is needed. I appreciate knowing that I have people to turn to if I need anything. You are all such a huge part of our fight! You help keep me strong without even knowing what an affect you have on my strength.

All of the prayers are being heard by our gracious God! Scott is doing so much better today. A huge part of his improvement was removing the NG tube. My neighbor hit it on the head when she said they might as well call it a torture device. It was hard to see him suffering and not be able to help him. We're both so happy that the tube is out!

They can't promise that they won't have to place another NG tube, because we don't know how his body will handle eating or drinking yet. If he starts drinking water tomorrow or eats and continues to vomit, that could mean that the bowel obstruction isn't gone. He is tolerating his IV fluids without vomiting, so that's a good sign. He has no abdominal pain today either, which is a huge blessing. His pain was at a 10 on Saturday night at the campground. I have to admit that was very scary, knowing I had no way to take him anywhere if I needed to, except calling 911. God made it all work out, and I'm so thankful! Scott is so tough and has endured so much. I'm thankful he's had a nice break and has felt good up until now this summer.

The surgical oncologist is unsure about what he sees on the CT scan. Besides for the bowel obstruction that he saw, he doesn't know if there is new tumor in the peritoneum or just scar tissue. This seems to be a common problem with scans in people with DSRCT who have had abdominal debulking surgery. We will pray that it's scar tissue. 

We have no idea how much longer they need to keep us. We also don't know what the future plan for treatment will be. We didn't get to talk to our oncologist Dr. Charlson today. Hopefully we'll see him tomorrow. 

Scott was supposed to have a scan at the end of August. That may change, but we're used to going with the flow. What else can you do? God's got a plan, even though it's hard for us to understand. 

Keep the prayers coming for further improvement day by day and getting back home to our kids and our beds! It's been a long time since we've been home sweet home. 

Love and hugs to each and every one of you! 

Updates on Scott's Fun Summer & His Health - Posts From May & June

Journal entry by Debbie Heiman — 5/22/2017
About a month ago, I wrote my last post. In the post, I said that we are blessed to know what may lie ahead for our family. Although that can make days even harder at times, it can also be a blessing. I said that sometimes a tragedy hits you out of nowhere and you don't have the precious time that you so badly want to have. Time is such a precious gift!

Scott's cousin Jamie was only 35 years old. Jamie suffered a seizure on May 9th. She was taken home to heaven on May 17th. We made a day trip to Minnesota today for her funeral. We're on our way home now. Scott is driving, so I have a lot of time to sit and think.

I ask that you say some prayers for Jamie's whole family! She is survived by her sister Kelly and her family, her sister Jessica and her family, and her parents Deb and Paul. She is also survived by many aunts, uncles, cousins, and others who loved her very much. Adjusting to life without Jamie is going to be very difficult for her family. My heart goes out to them! Jamie was always there to greet you with a hug and a smile, and everyone is going to miss that about her.

Today was another reminder to make every day count and to never take your loved ones for granted. Jamie's service was beautiful, and we know that she is safe in heaven smiling down on all of us.

Scott will be having a PET scan in 8 days (May 30th). We will get the results from his scan on Thursday, June 1st. Please pray for a stable scan, or even better yet, that the tumors in his liver have shrunk! Either way would be amazing news! 

Scott has been treatment free for almost 2 1/2 months. It seems like it has been a year! It is truly such a blessing to not have appointments, chemo, etc. filling up our calendar and our life! I would love for him to continue being treatment free, but we won't know what our next step will be until we get scan results. His hair is growing back and he has a nice beard. He is looking and feeling really good! I just love it!

Our oldest, Lexi, jut got confirmed yesterday. We had a wonderful day celebrating with many friends and family members! We can't believe that she's starting high school in August! It just doesn't seem possible. How did time go by so fast? 

I'm posting some pictures from her beautiful day.

Journal entry by Debbie Heiman — 5/31/2017
 Our grueling wait ended earlier than we expected. The nurse posted on our Froedtert MyChart page this evening.  We are so excited to share that Scott's scan remains stable! Better yet, a couple of the tumors in his liver have decreased slightly in size! 

I can't even begin to explain how happy our family is to receive this news! Not having to walk in to the appointment tomorrow with knots in our stomachs, being able to actually sleep tonight, and enjoying an evening of dinner and watching A Dog's Purpose are all blessings that we won't be taking for granted!!! 

I'm not sure why, but God has been so good to us! 1 year ago, Scott was preparing for surgery in New York. Today, we are celebrating how far he has come since surgery! It's an amazing feeling!

I'll post again tomorrow to let you know what we discuss with Dr. Charlson about future treatment or taking a longer break from it. Scott would like to continue with no treatment if our Dr. agrees. They will not let Scott go more than 3 months without a scan. We know that. 

Enjoy your evening everyone! Love the ones that you are blessed to share your life with!!! 

Midnight is the deadline for signing up for the Sarcoma 5K walk/run at $35. After midnight, the price goes up. The link for the race is posted above. 

If you would like a Heimanstrong t-shirt, they are $5. I need to know by June 14th. 

Journal entry by Debbie Heiman — 6/1/2017
Today's appointment with Dr. Charlson was wonderful! Everything we talked about was positive and encouraging! Scott's blood counts all look great. One liver count was elevated, but it has been for a long time, and is lower than it used to be, so nothing to be concerned about.

We discussed some options for his liver, but nothing will ever rid his liver of all of the tumors. If we start to try and shrink some of the larger tumors in his liver, it could end up causing more harm than good. Since his liver remains stable, we are going to leave it alone. We're happy with a stable and good functioning liver!

We discussed more chemo, and decided that we will continue with another 3 month break. That's right, Scott will have no treatment this ENTIRE summer!!!!!!!! The past 2 summers have been very difficult for Scott, and we can't even process the fact that we don't have hospitals and treatments wasting our summer. It's truly unbelievable and such a HUGE blessing from God! 

He will have to go to Froedtert on June 29th, July 27th, and August 29th to have his port flushed. We need to make sure it doesn't clot and continues to function properly for future treatment. He will also have a CT scan on August 29th. We'll get results on August 31st. It's hard to believe that the kids will be in school before he has another scan. 

Now, we need to start looking at our calendar for the summer. It will be the first time we can actually make plans in 2 years! I pray that Scott remains healthy this entire summer and we can enjoy time with family and friends and make a lot of happy memories!

Journal entry by Debbie Heiman — 6/4/2017
Yesterday, we celebrated how far Scott has come in the past year. June 3rd, 2016, was the day that Scott had surgery in New York. 1 year later, we receive news that Scott's cancer remains stable after 3 months of no treatment. Then we decide that we'll take 3 more months off from treatment before we do another scan. We have so much to be thankful for and so much to celebrate! Scott and I went to dinner and a movie yesterday. It had been a long time since we went on a date. I think the end of February was the last time, but who's keeping track?

We thank God every day for blessing us with this time! We will continue to fight the battle against Sarcoma. 

The link below will take you to the website to sign up for the Race to Cure Sarcoma on July 16th. It will take you right to our Heimanstrong link. If you aren't able to attend, but would like to support Sarcoma research to help find a cure to this monster, here's how. 

Click on the link below, click on race menu and then click donate. Go to team fundraiser and type in Team Heimanstrong. Thanks to our 42 current team members! I'm excited each time I see our team growing! Thanks to the generous friends who have donated to Sarcoma research! Your donations are very important and very much appreciated!!!

Journal entry by Debbie Heiman — 6/15/2017
I know that Scott is currently taking a break from treatment, but I don't want to stop posting and updating everyone who cares about him. This Caring Bridge site is truly therapeutic for me! Writing about what's going on helps me in a way that I can't explain.

This morning, Scott's alarm goes off at 5AM, as usual. With nowhere to rush off to every morning, I've been able to stay up later with the kids and sleep later than my normal 5 or 5:30. I decided to get up with him today and make his coffee and say goodbye to him. 

I joke "kinda, but not really" when I say he puts me to shame. If you get sick of me posting about how truly amazing this guy is, then you can stop reading my posts, because I am in awe of him daily!

Scott works a minimum of 10 hours a day at his job. He doesn't then come home and relax. Last night, he changed the oil on our 76' Dodge Ram van (Preshus- that's her name) and then grilled our pork chops at 8:45 for our late 9:00 dinner. The night before, he made it to Tyler's baseball game, did some odds and ends around the house, and then he mowed the grass. That made me feel guilty for not doing it before he got home.

Even when he doesn't have the energy to keep his eyes open, he's making sure that he spends some time with our kids each night. He doesn't EVER get enough sleep, because his plate is so full of responsibilities, and not one of them is left unfinished! Scott is the most dedicated man that I have EVER met in my life. Somehow he manages to juggle it all with such grace and not a single complaint. I strive to be more like him! Everyone could learn something from Scott. He is an all around nice guy too! 

We know how important this break in treatment is for his physical and mental health! We pray that God will bless us with another stable scan at the end of August. We trust that God has our best interest in mind and whatever happens will be for our good. 

The fact that Scott still has cancer in his liver is always on my mind. However, my mind plays tricks on me lately. I see how great he looks, and sometimes for short spurts, I forget that he's sick. I pray that he has some of those moments too! 

It's difficult to live in the moment and enjoy every day to the fullest when we let ourselves think about the future. I try SO hard to not think about the future, but reality is still there. 

God has been so good to us in blessing us with over 2 more years with Scott. I continue to pray for many more years with him. Please join me in praying for Scott's faith, strength, and positive attitude to keep fighting the good fight that he has been fighting for over 2 years! Words can't express how much he means to me and our kids. He is quite the hero in our house, and we're so proud to say he's all ours! 

Happy early Father's Day to all of the great Dads who sacrifice so much for their families! It means more to us than you could ever know!