The Girl Behind the Keyboard

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Hello my friend, I’m Chell I’m so glad to you dropped by my little blog!  I finally put my words into action and started my blog this month.  It’s been something I’ve dreamt about for the last five years, but kept putting it on the back burner.  All that’s left is to see what adventures my little blog and I will go on together.

I’m a creative old soul and I have a passionate about helping others through the bumpy road called cancer.  If a journey can paint a picture and a picture is worth a thousand words, then a person’s cancer journey must be a museum filled with a million paintings and novels!  Through it all, I continue to remain strong and stubborn!  Cancer will not conquer me, but I will conquer it!  Let me help you do the same with a kick butt attitude.

Here’s a few things about me:

  1. Chell isn’t my real name.

My real name is Michelle, but family and friends call me Chell.  I’m a wife and mother of 5 amazing children, with the youngest being a senior in High School.  I live in a very small, rural town in Montana.  So small, it’s actually called a co-operative….don’t worry, it was the first time I’d heard of such a thing, as well.

2. My life has been touched by cancer.

Even though I have no family history of cancer and I don’t (and never have) worship the sun, I was diagnosed with Stage 4 Melanoma in March of 2012.  I’m a natural redhead, so I grew up knowing the sun didn’t like me and I avoided it as much as humanly possible.  If I did (or do) have to be out in its rays, I would slather on the highest UV sunscreen from head to toe and reapplying almost every 30 minutes.

I had the distinct pleasure of the cancer working from the inside of body to the outside, through a mole I’ve had as long as I can remember.  I didn’t even know this was possible!  It’s amazing how much you really don’t know about cancer, until it smacks you in the face repeatedly, like a freshly caught fish.

My journey has included four major surgeries, two rounds of steroid treatments, an autoimmune disease, nerve damage, permanent lymphedema, 28 scars, 70 lbs of weight gain, medications galore, hair loss, acne, a body I don’t recognize, thyroid issues, financial stress, job loss, and more.

It may seem like an uphill battle, but as one cancer survivor so eloquently expressed it, “everyday I’m looking at the grass from the right side, it’s a good day.”  I am truly blessed and every day God grants me, I must live it to the fullest and cherish every moment.  I’m using my journey to inspire others and reveal God’s amazing grace and glory.

3. I’m as unique as they come!

You’ll often see me with purple or magenta hair, when I’m not sporting as close to my natural orange hair as possible (as I’m trying to keep the white hair’s under wraps).  My friends and family pick my laugh out of a crowd and hear me from far away.  I can give the Micro Machines man a run for his money, when I get excited…for those of you too young for that reference, I talk way too fast.  I can talk your ear off and can often be found talking to myself , if there’s no one around to listen or I’m trying to keep my thoughts straight.

I can’t even explain how my mind works, but it’s in a class of its own.  We may be having a conversation about books we’re reading and ideas for redecorating my craft room, arm knitting a new scarf, or writing a blog post (with nothing to do on the subject) pop into my head.  It drives my husband crazy, but he knows well enough now that I no longer have to say, “slightly off topic” before I change the subject.  Yes, I’m really lucky he “gets” me and still loves me!

4. I’m not holding my breath for a cure, but I still wholeheartedly support the American Cancer Society.

I’ve become involved in my local American Cancer Society Relay for Life and driven to help all those touched by cancer as possible.  In a later post I will reveal why I feel so strongly about supporting my local Relay for Life and you’ll come to understand.