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, August 20, 2011

15 of 33 Radiations Complete

As of Friday I have completed 15 of the 33 radiation treatments. There are 18 more radiation treatments to go, so I'm almost half way there! :-)

I'll see my Rad Onc on Monday to review how I am doing and ask any questions I have. As I was told would happen, the areas to first show darkening of the skin are under the arm, and just above the breast at the center of my chest. The chest area is due to the fact that I've already received sun exposure there over the years from wearing V-neck tops, swim suits, etc. It isn't red, but more of a brownish color, almost like a tan.

I have treatment with my arms up over my head, my index fingers just touching tips. When I put my arms up over my head and look into the mirrow, I can see an almost straight line across my chest (just above the breast), which is where the radiation field ends.

One additional symptom I'm noticing is a very tenderness to my nipple and more sensitivity to my skin. I had read about other people having a major problem with this, to the point where they could not wear a bra or had to wear one of those tanks with the shelf in it only inside out so the elastic did not touch their skin. I suppose it may get worse to where I am at the point too, but for now it is bearable.

I'm using Calendula gel on the entire area every night and apply either aloe vera gel or the Aquaphor cream immediately after radiation. Then I wait until after treatment to again apply anything as they want these creams/gels to have at least four hours to absorb into the skin before rads.

So three weeks down, and four weeks to go. Bring it on!!!

But I can't close without a couple of new pictures of our new grandson, Nicolas. We visited on Wednesday and Mark was introduced for the first time. Isn't he beautiful?

The proud mom and dad, Alura and Stephan, with newborn Nicolas at 4 days young

Grammie and Grandpa

Auntie Sarah with little Nicolas

Debbie... aka the cancer warrior; AND Survivor 


1 comment:

  1. OMG!!!,
    Alura looks just like you!!
    You are such a warrior my friend. I only hope, if I ever face a situation such as yours, that I would act with the courage and grace you show on a daily basis. Mark is blessed to have you as his wife and I am lucky to call you my friend.


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