Update on ME!

I’m still a little tough.  I’m back on steroids and that has helped…but I don’t want to be on steroids forever because that’s not good for me.  The steroids really mask a lot.  They make me feel zippier than I actually am but I think they are helping with the mouth sores which is a blessing.

A kind blog reader, Denise, send me a humidifier.  I didn’t have one.  It’s one of those things that I always intended to buy and really never got around to buying one as I didn’t know what kind was best…you know how it goes.  But, what a game changer.  I should have bought one years ago.  THANKS SO MUCH, DENISE.

Denise did the work of picking one out that is great.  THIS is the one she sent me.


I was pooped by the time I went to bed and almost didn’t set it up on the day it came.  I’m so glad I did.  It was a… miracle worker and only took a couple of minutes to fill and set up.


In the past, I was worried that I’d have to fill one of these every night and it would be a chore.  It says it runs 80 hours.  That’s no big deal to fill that often.

I’m a mouth breather when I sleep so my mouth on top of already being so dried out and miserable was taking a BIG HIT overnight with my mouth breathing.  The was so much better with the humidifier and a huge relief for me.  It was the first time I woke up happy and hopeful in over a week.

My mouth is still extremely uncomfortable…I still feel like it’s sunburned on the inside.  The humidifier was a great improvement to my previous nights.  Again Denise, THANKS!!

Carol sent some goodies hoping to help me with the dry skin…

… and another blog reader sent these hoping to help with my mouth issues.


I had felt crappy enough that Kalissa convinced me to go and get a Covid test…Thankfully that was negative.


So many of you are helping to take care of me and I appreciate your helpfulness so much.

I have a prescription Magic Mouth rinse that isn’t fun but necessary at night to sleep.  Do you know the taste and feeling in your mouth of the numbing stuff the dentist puts in your mouth before they give you a shot?  Well, that’s the stuff and taste of this mouth rinse.  It numbs the entire inside of my mouth.  I am supposed to swallow it at this point because they believe the sores go down into my throat.  UGH.  It’s a terrible taste but at least it numbs it up so I can sleep.

As far as eating goes…
It’s hit and miss.  I mostly eat soft foods.  Yogurt is great.  I made a batch of homemade rice pudding.  That worked.  Oatmeal is good.  Bananas are good. I really can’t taste food right.  But I know I have to eat something so do.  Karl brought me chicken the other night and I was able to eat that.  I’m excited about small victories.  I really have to think about how I eat, chew, and swallow as it’s super uncomfortable and actually painful if it doesn’t go well.

I have mac and cheese on tap.  I think that should be an agreeable meal.

The swelling in my jaw is down so my jaw isn’t popping out of place as much which is super helpful with eating…not perfect but much better.  At least there isn’t pain with it now…just awkwardness that makes eating a little challenging.

If you saw me on the street, I look like my normal self.  People think that because I’m still writing blog posts that everything is great…but behind the scenes, I’m not 100%.  I’m making it though and that’s what’s most important.

The whole situation does remind me that everyone is struggling with something…often things we can’t see…so be kind.  You all have been super to me and I so appreciate it.  I’m only writing that as a reminder that others are out there like me…looking pretty good on the outside but have some crap going on behind the scenes.  Please be helpful to them too.

I told my kids the other day that I feel 25% better than I did at the worst.  It’s been about a week now so hopefully, I’ll be at 50% before long.  I’m super thankful for the progress even if it’s slow.  My next big challenge will be getting off the steroids without a setback.  Fingers crossed.

I’m still super thankful I was able to be treated even with these side effects.  In a month, I’ll be much better.  I just know it!!  I can do a month…

Many thanks to the cards, well wishes and support you all have given me along the way.  It’s MUCH appreciated.

31 thoughts on “Update on ME!

  1. Gayle Shumaker

    Jo I believe this saying fits you as it does me. This is from Bob Marley on strength. You never know how strong you are until being strong is your only choice. You are right many of us look fine but aren’t. I’m confidant you will continue to improve your kids will make sure of it.

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  2. Linnea

    Thank you for the update on your health and well being, Jo. Those Melaleuca products, especially the Renew Body Lotion are wonderful. Moisturizing and no greasy or sticky feel. I don’t know if she shared with you the size of a quarter is all it takes for your entire body. I emulsify it a bit between my hands then tap it on my arms, chest, tummy, thighs, and calves. You may want to start with that amount and if you need a tad bit more take just under the size of a quarter in addition. After your shower leave your skin a bit damp and apply it as it will deal in the moisture. Prayers for your continued progress in overcoming these challenging side effects of the iodine treatment.

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    1. Stearns Carol

      Thank you Linnea for the explanation! I use it religiously but I’m not schooled in promoting it. I just know it works. So glad, Jo that you got the box and I hope you have started to use some of it. And yes, Linnea, you don’t need much.

      Reply
  3. Rita Scott

    Jo so glad that that there a small steps in the healing process. You are such a positive person and it rubs off on the rest of us. It really makes me stop and be grateful for what I have.

    Completed a Jacki Frost wallhanging today. It’s a lady snow woman ☃️. They all can’t be men.

    Reply
  4. Anna t

    Whenever I’ve had dental work that requires me to eat soft foods, I blend, for example chicken, squash and green beans into a smoothie type consistency, adding more liquid (broth in the aforementioned example), if necessary. Doesn’t look great, tastes fine, and gets the nutrients into me with no chewing. My dentist was adamant that I keep up with good nutrition to aid healing. Good thing he did, otherwise I would have eaten only ice cream and pudding and wondered why I felt awful. Maybe you will find this helpful.
    Wishing you the very best.

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  5. June

    So happy to hear of your progress. Never knew a humidifier could help. Is it for breathing easier? My brother in law has brain cancer. He just passed his first yr as a survivor. I’m wondering if that’s something that he ever thought to use. It’s been a tough week here filled with bad news about friends and family so it’s nice to hear you are trying to heal. Just take it one day at a time. Thanks for helping us to learn thru your struggles. How we can be more aware of others struggles.Prayers continued for you.

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  6. Judith Fairchild

    Jo 25% better is a huge improvement. So happy to hear that you are feeling some better. Being kind to each other pays off in so many ways. Thanks for the reminder

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  7. Kate

    Jo, you do put up a good front to us your blog readers. So sorry to know how you feel and I can only imagine what it is like to have such a sore mouth. You do have a good attitude and will be good to hear how much better you are after another few weeks or a month, You will have lots to celebrate! In the meantime, prayers go up for your recovery.

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  8. Sheila in WI

    Thank you for this update, Jo. So happy to hear there are little things making life just a little bit easier for you. Slow progress is still progress. Prayers continue for grace and strength to meet each day… one day at a time. ❤

    Reply
  9. Mary

    So happy to hear you’re hanging in there, Jo! Just a thought about the gum with xylitol- I think that’s very poisonous for dogs. I should have researched this before I said anything. Don’t let Ruby get ahold of it.

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  10. Mary e

    Please go online and read about toxic poisoning due to xylitol – we had some sugarless gum on the counter and I told Rick about it. We got rid of it – not taking any chances that our dogs would tip it over and eat some.

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  11. Debbie B

    Glad to hear of the progress you have made and wishing you continued improvement. Thanks for the update and love hearing your being so positive. I’m sure it’s great medicine. Hugs!!!

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  12. Suzanne

    You are in my prayers, Jo. I had cancer treatment 35 years ago. My treatment was much different than yours, but the similarity between our journeys is those hard days, good days, and days that are somewhere in between. I still remember them, and also remember how the kindnesses of others helped me through those hard months. You WILL come to the other side of this, stronger and kinder than you already are! God bless you with good rest and continued healing.

    Reply
  13. Nancy Summa

    So glad you a feeling a tiny bit better, Jo. Small steps are still steps in the right direction. Stay strong and positive. Holding you in my thoughts and prayers.❤️

    Reply
  14. sewhappy

    One thing you might like to try is a Sherbet Shake, like a milkshake but made with sherbet and ginger ale. My clients used to like them when nothing else tasted good. Continue to explore and find things that work for you.

    Reply
  15. Sarah

    Jo-I have a friend who had sores in her mouth and throat from Oral chemo and popsicles seemed to help. Just passing that info on in case you haven’t heard that and want to try them.

    Thanks for the update. You have been through a lot. Your ability to keep a positive attitude is a “super-power”! You have followers far and wide rooting for you and sending prayers.

    Reply
  16. Jill Klop

    I can imagine how frustrating it must be to be feeling down for so long. You are definitely not used to that. What you are dealing with sounds so painful. The things that you share are always so helpful. I’m thinking of picking up a humidifier to have on hand. It’s been so dry in Texas! I keep you in my prayers and I do keep hoping that you will have less pain very soon!

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  17. Christi

    We’ll keep praying for you. That Magic Mouthwash is the best. Some Vicks under your nose can confuse your brain. That menthol smell is great. Do try the Pepto Bismol rinse too . The stuff is basic so it coats very nicely.

    Reply
  18. Samantha M

    Sorry you’re feeling so rough, Jo. It’s so nice of your blog readers to send you stuff to help. I hope you continue to make small improvements and things get a little easier. Naively, I never knew there were all these side effects. Sending much love and hugs.

    Reply
  19. Lynn Walker

    Dearest Jo,
    Judging by the comments others make, if the love you inspire could make you well then you would be 100% and overflowing.
    I’m not religious so don’t have prayers but I do have hope and I send it to you and also I wish you have all the luck in the world.
    Love from England

    Reply
  20. Stearns Carol

    So glad you got your box Jo and opened it. I”m hoping you’ve tried it out. You don’t need much lotion. Not like drug store lotion that is all watery. Renew goes a long way. I’m hoping it all helps and you feel better and not so dry.

    Reply
  21. Carla

    Thank you for the detailed update. I find that having details help in praying. It seems to be a very complex recovery, but you know that Jesus is next to you every step. Blessings

    Reply
  22. Joy

    Bummer! So sorry you are hurting! Sure hope the treatment got all the bad stuff! Get better soon! Thoughts and prayers for you!

    Reply
  23. Kim from TN

    I’m glad to read that you’re doing better, hope it continues to improve. How nice to have others send you some help with dry skin, mouth issues (which sound awful) and the humidifier sounds like a great idea. I hope you continue to improve and start to feel more like yourself.

    Reply
  24. Shirley

    Praying for continued improvement. Your positive attitude is truly an inspiration for others experiencing life changing circumstances. How wonderful that others have sent you aids that they know will help alleviate the symptoms you are experiencing.

    Reply
  25. Janese Carrigan

    So happy you are doing better! I have Sjogren’s syndrome that causes my mouth to be extremely dry. Instead of sour candy, you may want to try a candy called Ice Chips, https://www.icechips.com/?sscid=11k6_roi6g& It is better on your teeth and doesn’t have the citric acid burn that the sour stuff can cause. It helps me a lot along with a humidifier. God bless!

    Reply
  26. Marie

    I thought I would ask if anyone had mentioned Magic Mineral Broth. One of the nurses told me about it when I had endometrial cancer and their office had copies of it. It is a broth receipe from some nutritionists that specialize in nutrition for cancer patients. The purpose of it is to provide a wide range of nutrients in an easy to consume form. I also seem to remember something about one of the developers having thyroid cancer, but that is stretching my memory. This should be the link (if I got it put in correctly).

    https://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/magic-mineral-broth/

    Reply

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