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.


Saturday, April 2, 2011

Happy & Gearing up for 5

On Friday I had my bloodwork done in anticipation of chemo treatment number five. Five has a good ring to it because then there are only three left to go of my total eight treatments (16 weeks). Dr. Anderson reports that I am still a bit anemic; but that since the next treatment will be with the new drug, Taxol, which is less likely to cause anemia, we can wait a bit to see if this improves. If it does not, a blood transfusion would be in order. So I am very hopeful that all will be well on this front.

The appointment was filled with good news, in my estimation. On physical exam, the tumor continues to appear to be shrinking. In a few weeks, a new breast MRI will be performed to confirm the size of the tumor and I'll meet with Dr. Elboim to discuss my surgery options so we will be ready to rock and roll with the surgery as soon as possible after the last chemo infusion. Dr. Anderson did caution me that sometimes even though it appears the tumors have lessened in size, the chemo might have attacked the cancer in a swiss-cheese-like fashion (his words), where it kills little pockets of cancer cells. If this is the case, then a mastectomy may still be in order because of the amount of breast tissue that would be removed during surgery. Time will tell on this, and I am not alarmed with this news. I am just glad that the chemotherapy is doing its job and starving the cancer cells. Die, cancer, die!!!

More good news is that many of the side effects I have been experiencing do not necessarily happen with Taxol. So hopefully there will be less fatigue, the rashes will subside, less pain in the hands and feet, etc. Although there may be some neuropathy in hands and feet with the Taxol. Dr. Anderson also indicated that if after the first Taxol treatment I do not have any allergic reactions, we may be able to cut the steroids in half which will help with my insomnia. Considering how anxious I have been that all those symptoms might continue to cover more days as the chemo compounds in my body, this was a huge weight lifted from my shoulders. I mean HUGE! So it was a great appointment!!! 

And this was our first early morning appointment so Mark and I had researched someplace to get breakfast afterwards. And.... we found our new favorite breakfast place in Santa Rosa. Dierk's Parkside Cafe on Santa Rosa Avenue. I had the warm poached egg salad, and Mark had Friday morning Joe's. Yum!!!

Miski X Memento Cria

My sweet sister-in-law, Marie, arrived about then and watched as we got the new mom and cria settled into their own pen for bonding, gave mom a ration of mineral pellets as a treat, dipped the cria's navel, and weighed the little guy. So our 2nd cria has arrived and one is yet to be born any day now.

Marie brought some yummy sandwiches and stayed to visit for a bit before buying some eggs and heading out. Then a couple of hours later, sister Nancy dropped by for a nice visit and to drop off some great reading material. Nancy is always very helpful with ideas on ways to sell farm product. She was so impressed with the quality and softness of the Basooka Bears that just arrived into inventory, that she took two with her to show the ladies at work (Santa Rosa Memorial Hospice) and see if she might sell a few. Go Nance!

That was our wonderful Friday. AND, did I say it was another glorious sunny Spring day! I was all smiles.

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



  1. Aren't smiles and warm, sunny spring days just wonderful? Also, a perfect and productive Friday to boot! Life is miraculous and so are you, Deb.

    I will continue to pray for shrinking of those cancer cells, improvement with the anemia and the future breast MRI being the best of news.

    Hugs and my hopes for a good night's rest. ~Michelle

  2. Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU --- to Michelle and everyone leaving all these wonderful, positive comments to the blog. Look.... we are at 46 days, i5 hrs, 12 min, and 17 seconds and counting (at this moment) till approximate end of chemo. Yippee Doo!!!


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