LET IT BEGIN! : The Irony of Returning to the Infusion Suite

Back in the ring: Chemo ninja shirt👍, Buddy Ben Blanchard’s “never retreat never surrender”(never forgottem💕) bracelet👍, my ol’ Team Buna ELT (Every Little Thing) bracelet, new rock “do”🤘👍



I prayed it would  never come again, yet here we are.  When people ask how we’re doing it, I normally respond,

   “It’s SINK or SWIM:

          Which would you choose? We SWIM.”

We always swim.  Every day… until my very last, is a day worth swimming!

The first day of your first round of chemo, (after all the tests and waiting…waiting…waiting … ) to hear you get to start the treatment and get the show on the road, always seems kinda like the best and worst day of your life all wrapped in one! Especially when I’ve been down this road before.  Lots of butterflies in your stomach, topped with a week or so with sleepless nights (not necessarily anxious, just plain awake and organizing your … sock drawer??), and throw in a psycholigicaly induced premeditated metallic taste in your mouth because you can already “taste” the chemo when you enter the infuision area.  Or maybe that’s just me, cuz I’m a freak like that.












“Let it begin! “Let it begin!!! – Rhino

  • I, personally feel kinda like that Adorably psychotic little Hamster, Rhino, on one of our fam favorites, BOLT.  Just like Rhino did to his dusty ol’ hamster bowl before a rumble, It was me this time, practically slamming myself against the windows of the center… “LET IT BEGINNN! LET IT BEGINNNNNNN!”





I’m clearly lookin a lil tired at the end of many hours of chemo on my first day back again, but Grant here, was one fantastic nurse, with me every step of the way.


  • This place is like family to me. Last time I knew no one and my life very suddenly went in to their hands. How quickly they became my life support. Each one of them. Above,  you see my first chemo nurse for this round , Round 1-Day 1 (September 15th), although I’ve known him since my last battle. He has such a heart of gold. Meet Grant👌 Grant never left my side.  I had some unique pains in my back and began my typical clockwork nausea at the first drip of Taxotere, but he was there right with Lindsey, another rock star nurse, to monitor me, converse with my oncologist and his team and have regular visits with the Nurse Practitioner Sydney (who I loooooove) to stay right on top of their game. When I say they don’t mess around, they don’t mess around.









Me, Angelle Albright, and Susan Bopp (My You Night Sisters and Forever Friends)



More You Night Sisters Susan Bopp (Co-Founder), Charo Arnold /and baby Gracie!!, Me, Renee Guiterrezz (My current partner in recurrence cancer butt kickin crime! Grrrrr), and our hopeful, and Cheryl Livaudais (my future signup to YouNight – hint hint, nudge nudge)


Renee and I, givin it all we’ve got together. We walked together in Northshore class of 2015, we fight back round 2 now, and we support each other through thick and thin. I love you so much. This is one of the most selfless, big hearted girls around.


Covered in prayer by my very special prayer prayer blankets from my YouNight Sister, Stephanie Broussard (we forgot a pic together, Sista!) who left me her own specil blankie with the cross. I also still snuggled in my dark green knitted prayer shawl form my household sister from college, Mimi Machado who knitted this with a prayer at each stitch during my first diagnosis. I will continue to Hold them both very close to my heart. Thank you!!!



Never alone. Friends and family can be there, but God is ALWAYS there:    So the Hubs was laid up, sick in bed,  the stress is finely setting in and going straight to his immune system. So this mama drove herself to chemo, but my YouNight sisters (Cheryl we’re signin you up BTW!) ANGELLE planned to come anyway, and DEIDRE called in the troops or did smoke signals, who knows with that woman!  In no time, we had a revolving door party!  It was such a surprise and such a fun distraction. (Thinkin Bob Marley’sSTiR it UP   (click link to hear song) was my tune yesterday as we stirred up the infusion suite😁😂🎉)





Laughed the whole way to sleep… smiling here proud to sport his TEAM BUNA shirt as we both supported each other!


  • No matter how crazy the day it all worked out. Big guy upstairs even heard my concern to still “be mommy”. The dude had a 7:45 am oral surgery w anesthesia after other 4 sibs needed to be divided and dropped off to their schools before that, aaaaaand MamaBuna desperately wanted to be with her boy from when he drifted off (laughing from the gas😂) to sleep, to waking and, with a tear, asking me to leave to find and feed his pet unicorn. ??? HAHA!  That was my cue👌. I could now slip out to hurry over to chemo while his sick daddy (yup for fun we added a cold into the mix to keep him out of MBP😩), & brought the dude to his godmother/pro nurse’s house to dote on him like he’s always wanted with her. Whew! 





  • Yesterday reminded me, yet again, of silver linings. Nearly every cloud has one.  Making yesterday happen took, what felt like, a million moving parts for the many directions that our kids needed to be, much less the last minute curve balls sent in the last 24 hrs before. Deep breaths…it all worked out. Remember, God’s got this. He’s never panicked.   It may seem like we have a chronic case of craziness in our house, a chronic case of sleepless little people, or you may have a chronic case of the Mondays at work, who knows?  But whatever your CHRONIC case is,  I raise you one, not in a better than type of speech, by any means,  that’s not my style AT ALL. I will bet you though.  Stay with me.   I bet you to look at your chronic case whether it is an actual diagnosis or a regular daily situation  through a different lens, one that is  more like a colorful prism, or better yet A KALEIDOSCOPE! A kaleidoscope is interesting, colorful, full of wonder and everchanging with every twist. But,  if you dont’ take the time to shine it in the light, you’ll miss it.  It’ll just look like  a pile of broken pieces of shapes and glass and jumbled colors with nothing much to see.  But show it a little light, lift it up and out, and there… there suddenly it  just became the most interesting spectacle around!    Twist it! Turn it!  It’s glory is endless!   It’s all about perspective.  It’s about perspective and the ability to reach out and look for it.  It’s there. It’s always there.



Again, Why???

Cause every little thing,  is gonna be alright!”  – Bob Marley

  (Or translate that  …   PHIL 4: 6-7)

God’s still singin to me in every difficult … & happy moment.  He knows that music is so often my prayer.  Singing is praying twice✌


So as this chemo ninja / platinum blonde on the outside (for at least a little longer)/wannabe Rastafarian/  who only knows what else on the inside (depends on my mood, really) … Signs off singin away while we gear up for more days back at the infusion suites, 





1-Pray TODAY, even if you just say “hi” (don’t wait ’till tomorrow) LIVE for today!!! 

2-    Make someone smile: If it’s  doing an act of service, writing a REAL LETTER😱, or just smiling at random passersby. (No expectations for a response, just know you’re planting seeds IS the prize)

3-  Become a ninja😂👍 (details below).






*One more  Gratitude Gab:

Thank you to ALL for the jaw dropping love and support from ALL over!!! We can’t possibly thank you ALL  enough, but in our best efforts toTRY, know that we spend every moment of our prayers praying for all of you, our  Holy   Ninjas, holding nothing back aaaaand intend to live now and always praying and paying it forward, as a family. We hope you JOIN in on our mission for families to help families in praying and paying forward for our ultimate dream come true.  See BUNA’s HOPE PROJECT/non-profit for more info👍

With the courage of the ninja, the power and grace of God, and the trust and chill factor of our Marley tunes…. We (meaning w Big Guy upstairs) sooo got this!






21 thoughts on “LET IT BEGIN! : The Irony of Returning to the Infusion Suite

  1. Deacon Rich and I are storming the heavens to move this mountain ! I agree with you about the music , it is also healing in many ways !
    With love and gratitude for your words and your inspiring strength, faith and trust United in our prayers
    Diane & Rich


  2. Your faith and optimism is so encouraging and brave. You, and the rest of your family are back in our family’s prayers, I am sad that you need to fight another battle round. I am happy to see you have tons of support! I am sure that’s a BIG help.


  3. You are made of super strong substance, sis, and I’m in awe of your fortitude and constant hope! God’s got this for sure! We’re praying everyday for you, your family, and your doctors, for all who meet you and sit for a moment, to those who sit for hours by your side. Sending so much love!


  4. Love the Rhino image and prism viewpoint. Your writings give me so much more strength than you can imagine. You are an inspiration and My husband and I are sending prayers your way. You’ve got this Ninja!!!!


  5. You don’t know me but my husband went to school with you. I’ve followed your journey on Facebook and you are ABSOLUTELY INSPIRING. Inspiring to those who have been through similar situations and inspiring to those who may one day have to experience the same setback. You are truly a beautiful person. Like I said, I don’t personally know you, but your spirit and love shines through. Your perseverance is amazing. Keep fighting and I’ll keep praying for you! Thank you. You are a true hero!


  6. Elise- you are amazing. I know Renee is amazing , also. Everyone has got you covered in prayer! Give the suffering to Jesus and he will use it in mighty ways. You have a wonderful caring team around you. God bless you and your family. Praying for your complete healing.


  7. Prayers over pain. You have Him in your corner. Our Team Buna bracelets went back on as soon as we found out. Prayers🙏🏼, Love💗, and Positive Energy✨ All coming to you. You are amazing!


  8. Every day I say this short, powerful prayer “God please find a simple cure for Cancer for everyone without the bad side effects. Let it be natural like maybe doing cell combats, good against the bad cells. Please do it as soon as possible” When I did chemo I would try to visualize the Holy Spirit running through my body zapping anything that God did not create as he did create us in his image. I would love to come and say the rosary while you are there. Just let me know. JoAnn Fandal


  9. You are amazing Elise. I will continue to lift you and your family in prayer. You are another reason I am so pleased to be a part of Younight St. Tammany 2016. May God continue to bless you always!


  10. Hi, My name is Sue, I am the mother of you’re former Household Sister, Marchelle. I have been praying for you since Marchelle first forwarded one of your posts to me. I will continue to pray for your beautiful family, that they have the grace necessary to get through this difficult time, and for you I will pray that God will give you the graces, virtues and faith that you need and that you will be truly healed. I pray my morning offering for you and offer up all my pain for you. May God Bless you and bring you all closer to Him through this difficult trial. I ask this in the name of Jesus, through the intercession of his Blessed Mother. Amen!


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