Monday, August 10, 2009

Ringing the Bell

VP''s the day we've all been waiting for...the LAST radiation treatment and the long awaited "Ringing of the Bell." After such a dismal Friday, Bren spent the weekend recovering. She's back on track and this little video will help you all celebrate the end of this grueling part of the CURE.

So today is a day to celebrate your life, take a nap, eat a good healthy meal, tell those most important to you how much you love and appreciate them, and thank your higher power for all that makes your life complete.

We're going HOME!!!! It's Brenda's time to heal.

Hugs to all...
Nurse Dee and a very Courageous, but Exhausted, Brenda


  1. Congratulations... Let me be the first to say thank goodness & I'm with you "let's blow that taco stand..." okay so now start packing to get back home to AZ were you both belong so we can all start spoiling you and fattening you up... oops you still have to get into that bikini for a beach paradise vacation!

    Can't wait to see you on August 23!!! You are the best and the champ!!! And you look marvelous, darling!!!

    Lots of Love, Hugs and Blessings always, Cathie

  2. Wow! That video made me cry! I'm sitting in my office and tears of joy are running down my cheeks! May God bless both of you as you recover from this grueling treatment. None of us can really know how difficult this has been but we love you both and plan to be there to watch you celebrate the cure and the rest of your lives together.

    Now the days will start to get better!


  3. Yahoooo!!! Congratulations Brenda! A course endured with tremendous grace, strength and resilience and also a ton of humor. You are not human! You are a super are ET, "Electra-Towanda"! Well done! (no pun intended).

    I continue to be in awe of the both of you. Dee you are the best partner and caregiver anyone could dream of, your dedication, love and determination shines through each action, each word you write in this blog. Each one of us could only wish we will have someone like you by our side should we face such a tremendous challenge. You both are very lucky to have eachother on this journey we call 'life'.

    So Rest Up, Re-Generate, Take a Breather - and PACK!!!

    Lots of love,

  4. WAAHOO!!! I heard that bell ringing clear up here in IDAHO. It brought tears of joy! I always knew you were a strong, determined gal...but what you have endured and still maintain your sense of humor is beyond my comprehension. You are one incredible individual! Pop and I are elated that you are finished with these difficult treatments.
    Kudos to Nurse Dee....what a wonderful partner/nurse/caregiver that you have had in her. She is one in a million and you are blessed to have her in your life.
    Now just concentrate on healing and getting home. Just being able to sleep in your own bed will help tremendously.

    What a trooper you are (no pun intended)

    We are looking forward to 'great news' on Oct 6.

    Love to you both,

    Donna and I are so happy that the end of this treatment is finally here. Ditto to Dori's comments - you both amaze us each day. Get home safely and heal and recover near those that love you most (abbie and Tanner) just kidding. Hope to see you both soon
    much love
    jodie and donna

  6. The bell could be heard all over the U.S.A. this morning! Best sound we've heard in a long time. Brenda, you are incredible! Your strength is amazing. Watching the video when you rang the bell brought tears to my eyes. Keep up the fantastic effort. When you get home again you'll probably feel 150% better! You and Dee have gone through the fires of hell and have come out smiling. More prayers and good thoughts will be going your way from now on. We love you B.!!
    Joan & Andy

  7. Well, your bell ringing was heard in Illinois, as well as across the country...congratulations. Now our Heroines from Houston are ready to think about heading Home! Let the packing begin and know that life can only get better with each passing day!

    Bonnie and Jackie

  8. As we have said from the very beginning; you are both truly amazing. We celebrate your strength, your fight, your love and your healing course. We celebrate your day; we celebrate our family and can't wait until we can wrap our arms around you both. Until then, we love you and know that through Christ all things are possible. Callie aka Gimmee

  9. I heard the bell ringing as I motored through Long Island on my way to a meeting. You know me - cops ringing a bell usually equals speeding ticket. Out of habit I dutifully pulled over. No cop in my rearview - whoo hoo. Even better - that could only mean one thing - my friend has completed this round of the Tour 'd Cure. Well done.
    You look mahvelous. Absolutely mahvelous! You really do look great well except for the neck, but that too shall quickly heal now that the intrusion is done.

    The bell ringing video was a wonderful way to celebrate the end of this stage and the beginning of the next phase - homeward bound.

    Dee - even I cannot think of the words to describe your efforts so I settled on one - BRILLIANT!!!

    You both deserve to enjoy the next few days. Pack, relax, heal, regroup, etc. Home is waiting.

  10. We can only echo what has been said today and everyday through this journey - such a long haul but finally over that long awaited end line....we can not imagine what it must feel like to have been through what you have and to be able to say "we are done" are both remarkable individuals that we are lucky enough to be able to call our friends.

    We look forward to seeing you in AZ sometime real soon...


  11. Woohoo!!! I second, third, and fourth all the comments others have made. You truly are a wonder woman, Brenda, and I'm so happy that you got to finally ring that bell and start heading home. Abbie and Tanner will smother you with lots and lots of kisses, I'm sure.

    Dee, you simply put Florence Nightingale and Clara Barton (and even Toni) to shame when it comes to your beyond-excellent nursing care. Since Brenda is Wonder Woman, I'll call you Amazing Woman.

    I'm very proud to call you both my friends.


  12. GREAT JOB!!!!
    Heard that bell ringing all the way in New Jersey. We are all so very proud of you both for getting the job done and getting Brenda on her way to the CURE.

    It wasn't easy by any means, but you both stuck with it and to your guns. You both kept your noses to the grind no messing around. Now your done with the Chemo and Radiation and homeward bound.

    You are both amazing, Everyone above me on this blog has said it over and over again WE ARE ALL VERY PROUD TO CALL YOU GUYS OUR FRIENDS. We are all very happy for you both. God bless you on the rest of your journey and may the news we hear when you have your scans in October be "CURED"

    Looking forward to spending time together with you both . Michele and I have been missing you lots.

    Hugs and Kisses,
    Karen aka Mc Guyver

  13. P.S. Forgot to say I loved the Video. Electra looks pretty darn good to me. Expect to be talking with you soon.
    Karen AKA McGuyver

  14. Right On Sister!!!! We all watched your video from work this morning and all cheered you on!! Wow.. what a journey these last 4 months have been for to see you ring that bell and smile from ear to ear was awesome!!! You choked us all up!! Did you get to kick that face mold all the way back to your apartment and vent your aggressions?????? I would of :) Your poor voice..we need to audition you for "Froggy" on the little Rascals!! We sure watched enough of those shows when were little thanks to Keith..LOL Just amazing what you have gone through and how strong your are! You just amaze me everyday. Your are our hero for sure. Keep on Kickin' Cancers Ass like Amers says! Keep on packing girl you will be home before you know it. Remember Paul still has his offer on the table if Jay can't make it. Wishing you nothing but good days and good outcomes from here on out!
    We all love you Sis!!!!
    Hugging on your arm still :)
    Cheers from Eagle to Houston!!
    Rhonda oxoxoxo

    Sis....You even had on my shirt......GO VAN GO!!! :) he he

    Peeker....No words will ever describe what you have done and gone through yourself. What an emotional roller coaster you have been on. We and especially Brenda will be forever grateful that you were there for her. What a had many titles for sure! Glad I got to be there to see you at your best! You make me proud!! Glad to have a GREAT SISTER like you in my life. Remember "3 peas in a pod" right!!

    Love you lots!

  15. I'm so relieved and overjoyed that this day has finally come and I'm so proud of you both for all the reasons people listed above! No tiny tears of joy here, just out and out sobs of them! I love you guys so much and am counting down the days (only 11, by the way!) til you're home. xoxoxBecky

  16. Brenda, you are amazing. You have gone thru an event no one should ever have to endure and you have done so with such grace and strength. I feel lucky to have been a witness to this journey. Thank you for letting us join you in this sacred place. How impressive you are... for so many things we've witnessed.
    Dee, I have watched you change before my eyes. I have never seen you so warm, so connected, so in the moment as I have these last few months. Bless you for documenting the events in Houston so we could all understand what you have gone thru. There is no way any of us would have understood the way these events unfolded with out you telling us. It helps ease the feeling of utter helplessness to know on a daily basis where you have both been.

    Can't wait to see you in 11 days.
    So much celebrating left to do!
    big hugs & kisses all over your faces

  17. Brenda & Dee:

    Yippee! All I could think of when I saw the video clip were words from a Christmas Hymn: "I heard the bells on Christmas day . . . " (Too many years of choir, I know! That's why I've since become a choir drop out.) But, it must SEEM like it's Christmas today!!! The first time I watched the video, there was no sound, and it was an even deeper experience than when I heard the bell ring, for I could FEEL the motions you were making more than hear them and I could SEE the celebration in your movements and in your face. (Then, the electronically-challenged actually found the way to get the sound working on her laptop again -- which is a miracle in itself!) After listening to it, all of the past few months of your journey really settled into my bones, and I just cried tears of relief for you.

    I can only ditto what everyone else has said. The story about Paula & her husband shouts loudly that you are on your way to being the light for someone else's journey (what's new about that??) You forge the path, my friend, and then share the wisdom. I know your experience will end up inspiring, encouraging and leading someone else down the road of turmoil, fear and unknown. You have always been the best at that!

    Dee, your sharing of the innermost thoughts and struggles through these months of sheer treachery, when you must have been too exhausted to even think, tells us a lot about your love for Brenda, and your sense that she needed this village and her connection to all those who love her so much. Thank you is not sufficient. You have been her miracle. For sure.

    Rest up (in between glorious packing for home!) We all look forward to celebrating your tenacious spirits, your damn feeding tube out, and the love and laughter you continually exhibited on this exhausting journey. Come home safely. Let me know when you are settled and feel like a visitor. In the meanwhile . .. Hold on to yourselves. . . as my friend told me on many occasions.. . May your journey home be safe and as exhilirating as ringing that bell must have been today. And, damn it, keep that mask thingy . . . it might come in handy on the next KICK CANCER's ASS blog!

    Love to you both!

  18. Congratulations on completing this grueling phase of the road to the CURE. Way to hang in there, guys! You are a great TEAM, and you should be proud! Home sweet home is just a few days away!