What started as IDC (Infiltrating Ductal Carcinoma) in 2011, then turned into CHF (Congestive Heart Failure) in 2013, probably partially caused by chemotherapy along with a genetic pre-disposition. Here we are now in March 2016 and I am newly diagnosed with Stage IV breast cancer in the left breast and liver (LMBC - liver metastasized breast cancer).

So the focus has shifted yet again, BUT... I continue to THANK YOU for your prayers, love & support. I receive them with open & loving arms. My wish is that I will gain strength from you, will provide helpful information and strength to others & will help to strip away the fears we each experience.

I am strong. I am loved. I am healthy. I WILL SURVIVE!

Have you or your loved one had their annual mammogram? PLEASE, don't put it off. Speaking from experience, I highly recommend monthly self exam as well. And if you are now cancer free of breast cancer, do everything you can to insist that your doctors follow up with an occasional PET Scan and labs for tumor markers.

Contents may be uplifting, sad, funny, scary, downright depressing ~ THAT IS CANCER .... at it's best, at its worst.

PLEASE ~ Feel free to share this blog with anyone who is interested to learn about my journey. While I welcome their support, I hope that by sharing this experience freely to the universe I may help to support others by breaking down some of the barriers and fear associated with breast cancer and the treatment.


Friday, March 18, 2011

Things Are Looking Up :-)

Looking up ... AND, Looking GOOD ~
The Tumors Appear to be Shrinking!!!

Today, Friday, was one of those great days in my life right now. After taking care of things around the farm, we headed into Redwood Regional Cancer Center for my semi-weekly appointment to  do a blood draw and meet with the Doctor or NP. Today, Dr. Anderson is on vacation, so we will see the NP, Theresa.

Prior to the blood draw in the infusion center, the nurse noticed that the edges of my port incision looked a little "angry"; probably because the ends of the stitches were still hanging out. I told how we had tried to clip them, but they were just too short to get a hold of. She was able to get one side out, which was so good, since these had really been bothering me since the Port procedure. We will work on the other side on infusion day.

Then it was off to wait a bit to get the blood results back and see NP Theresa. The blood work is good to go for next transfusion - YEAH. I am a bit anemic, so we will be watching this as time progresses. But this changes nothing at the moment. Then we went over some of my questions and again the big "sleep" question. Theresa confirms that yes, the pre-meds are a steriod so hence the "amped up" feeling I get for several days after infusion. And chemo is putting my body through a lot so I need to do my best to find what works for me and then "roll with it", as Mark says. If I'm overly tired and fatigued, sleep whenever it hits me. If I'm not, make the best of the awake hours I have and then sleep when I can. I'm finding the Ambien helps me to get, at best, 5-6 hours of solid sleep, Which is about 2 more than I seem to get on my own. Theresa did write me a prescription for,  which my Pharmacist Niece Sharleen has suggested I give a try. So I will get that filled this weekend.

We talked about how now I probably have noticed a routine from chemo to chemo and can predict good and bad days. And that is so very true. So I can try to be proactive with my schedule and life, things I take and when, and then "roll with it".

But the great news is that at the end of the session Theresa did a physical exam. She estimates that the tumor area is down to about 3 cms, from the original size of 6 cm, which is what Dr. Anderson recorded on my first exam. WAHOO

That is so fabulous. All this crappy feeling is a good thing.

The chemo is blasting those cancer cells to smithereens and they are retreating and giving up the fight.  
I am a warrior, AND I WILL SURVIVE! 

So... this is not yet the end of the great day Friday was. Mark and I celebrated  this good news with a late lunch at Betty's Fish and Chips and brought home a little berry pie for tomorrow night. Then we headed home for a little nap. You see, I had planned a big date tonight with my dearest girlfriends from high school. Our plan was to meet at 6:30pm at London Lodge to do some catch up, hang out, laugh and have fun. And boy did we ever! It was so great to get together with Jerry, Gwenn, Jan, Jo, and Marian. But we missed Eileen too. We started at the Lodge and then headed over to Fig Cafe when we realized the lodge stopped serving food at 8pm. The laughter and silliness continued until 10:30pm, when I called for my car and my knight in shining armor Mark arrived to charriot me home the couple of miles from downtown Glen Ellen. Boy did we laugh and have fun. It was fabulous and hopefully we can do it again real soon.

Here's to more great days like today!!!

Hugs, Debbie... aka the cancer warrior; AND survivor 



  1. WAHOO!!!!!

    This is amazing and wonderful news. So very excited. Keep a-blasting!

    I can't help but know in my heart of hearts that your attitude is a big part of the success; you are AMAZING, Debra Emery!
    Love you so very much! Your Seester

  2. Wow.. that is the best news I have had in a long time. How absolutely wonderful. This must lift
    a lot of weight off your beautiful head...
    PS let's look for some big old dangling earrings
    to complete your new look!
    Love to you

  3. Debbie, simply amazing, how fantastic, the best news EVER!!!

    It looks like your chemo treatments are producing the results that you and your doctor were hoping for. Now, that you are in the groove of things, you can plan your days on how to "roll with it."

    Keep on deserve it Debbie.

    And nothing ends a perfect day than laughing, having fun, and spending time with girlfriends.

    Hugs... and all of the prayers are WORKING! ~Michelle

  4. Great news, Debbie! I am so thrilled to hear that things are looking better for you. I am believing with you that more good news lies ahead. And, continuing prayers for you as you go through this process: for healing, for strength, for continued guidance for your doctors. I love you so very much, Nance.

  5. Awesome Deb! especially the shrinking tumor info!!! I have to admit the thought of all you girls yacking it up at the Lodge congers up an interesting batch of 'post' High School memories! sounds like it was fun and just what the doctor ordered to highlight your best Friday yet!!

  6. It's good to hear that you're fighting the tumor with not only chemo but laughter, which IS the best medicine. Keep it up.



  7. WAHOO is right Deb. What wonderful news for a wonderful woman and her wonderful husband and family.

  8. WOOOO HOOOO! Go Debbie! We are so excited to hear the great news! We love you!

    Go Deb Go! Go Deb Go!



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