I love that if we go more than a few days without posting on this blog, several of you call or email to find out what’s going on.  Thank you!  Your support really does lift us up.

We’re so close to the end, yet it’s been rough lately.  Nothing gets me down like the pain in my feet (or “HFSR,” described perfectly here) and resulting lack of mobility.  Weepy and blue, I’ve been a real pill to live with.

BUT, the clouds are clearing.

Dr. O’Regan had me stop taking Sorafenib last Thursday.  And, based on these recommendations, I’m trying lots of prescription-strength foot goo – Lidocaine, Tazorac cream and 40% Urea lotion.

Today, I felt comfortable enough to restart Sorafenib, if only for a few more days.  I believe that this is the drug that has helped me the most, but I can not wait to be rid of it for good!

Also part of the Revive Nicole campaign this week:

Nicole and JillMeet Jill.

If there is one person who understands it all, it’s this beautiful lady!  Bless her for reaching out to me when Emory connected us last March.  She completed the same clinical trial and was cancer-free going in to surgery.  Her family – a loving husband, a daughter Sara’s age and a son Sam’s age – and blog are strikingly similar to my own.

Via email, Jill has answered my questions, given me tips and encouraged me for months.  We met for the first time Friday.  She’s even more delightful in person and it’s an honor to call her my friend.

The Yates FortAnother summertime splurge, this fort and a pair of swings were installed in our backyard last week.  We added the bucket & pulley, some landscaping and threw some rocks underneath and called it a rock garden.

The 4 of us spent the entire weekend outside, huddled together on our own turf.  Re-energizing.

The Glass CastleI also escaped into The Glass Castle, which a friend dropped off last week.

Wonderfully written and, somehow, funny, it’s a great read for anyone.  And, if you’re feeling down?  You’ll be counting your blessings in no time, wondering how in the world this gifted author made it through her childhood.

Add countless other gestures from family, friends and Joey’s coworkers, and I’m ready for this Thursday!  My last chemo treatment.



  1. Ann Chase says:

    Dear Nicole,
    You have been such a trooper through all your treatments.You have so many friends and family pulling for you all over the country.

    Can’t believe the kids are off to school already but mostly that they are old enough to go to school, such adorable children.

    Brett and Abbey will be in town this Friday. We are planning a get together . Hopefully, Dan and Brynne can come. I think Steve and Emilie might even be in town then.

    Kurt has been in a holding pattern after his treatments. He will have a Pet Scan next week. we are taking all the grandchildren to the beach for an overnight on Wed. We have lots planned so it should be fun!


  2. You have been in my thoughts and prayers all day, knowing it was treatment day. You, Joey, Sara and Sam are my prayers nightly, and my thoughts so often.
    That’s a wonderful addition to your yard. I know Sam and Sara love it.
    I read “The Glass Castle” and the second one she wrote also. What a survivor! ‘Couldn’t imagine seeing my mother going through dumpsters. Whew!
    What an asset Jill is to your life. No one else could be as understanding and helpful, I’m sure. Of course, you are so easy to love and care about. Take care, and I hope your feet and everything else will be much better soon. AND, you deserve to be weepy and blue and a pill to live with, and all the other adjectives you want to use to describe your feelings. Take care, honey. Love you lots, Aunt Edna

  3. Hope you didn’t have to run too many stairs today :)

  4. Gail Joyner says:

    “How are the “HAPPY FEET”? Gives this phrase a whole new meaning! The things you learn!! Hope the kids had a great start to the year! Out here we have a Middle Schooler, Elementary student, and a High Schooler! Where does the time go?? Rainbows to One and All!

  5. I LOVED reading your blog this am and I loved the picture of your fort (I think you will have a certain O & H coming to check it out too.) I will be thinking of you tomorrow. I agree with your friend Claudia above. Amen for the rainbows you create for yourself that keep you focused and for your friend Jill. You (and your feet) are on my prayer list too. Jennifer

  6. Claudia Johnson says:

    “Amen!” “Amen!” Speaking of “Amen,” I hope you don’t mind that I put your name on the Prayer List at Haygood United Methodist Church. I simply called the church office and made the request. It was in the bulletin this past Sunday, along with many other folks. (I also put Kurt Chase on the Prayer List.) I’m inspired, Nicole, by how you keep reaching for that radiant rainbow that lies on the other side of those very dark clouds. Please continue to THINK RAINBOW, and please thank your friend, Jill, for me – for being there for YOU! Much Love, Claudia

  7. Cole & Mo says:

    Hi Nicole-

    The Revival, Jill (nice to meet you), glass castle, and the fort all are good things!! Thanks for the updates. I’ll see if Mo has read the Glass Castle. From the picture you can tell that Jill is an amazing woman.

    Us Oregonians are far away and a little out of the loop but the blog is keeping us connected. Thanks for letting us in to the Yates world. Now my kids want a super duper fort along with safety features of course. :)

    We will be thinking of you on Thursday. As Gramps and my dad would say, “go get em tiger”.


    Cole, Mo, Hud, and Sloane

  8. Christine says:

    Ah! LOVED The Glass Castle! It was a summer reading choice for my classes for several years. Amazing story. And, I agree, funny! How is that possible?! I assume you’ve read Angela’s Ashes…? Not as funny, but very good.

    So sorry you were blue, and glad that you are feeling better. What a reward it must have been to meet Jill in person! –And to thank her and hug her. It can be so hard to take from others, but when you need help, by golly, you need someone who’s been there! I’m sure her being able to help you these past few months was as valuable and cathartic for her as it was helpful and comforting for you. I hope Jill knows that I thank her, too, for offering my friend guidance and advice when she needed it!

    Much love to you all, and I’ll be thinking especially positive thoughts for you on Thursday.

  9. LAST CHEMO. Can I have an “Amen?!”