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.


Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Annual - Check

In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, October 2012, I hope to post as frequently as possible this month. Heaven knows I am learning of new breast cancer diagnosis, or serious recurrences of breast cancer, often times metastasis, nearly weekly. Lets all do whatever we can to see that all women are aware of the breast cancer risks, and that research soon puts a stop to this life-changing, and often deadly, disease.

Wow, one year since completing all treatment has passed, and today was a good day. I met with my Oncologist, Dr. Anderson, for my annual followup appointment. Something I was anxious to find out about ended up to be good news ~ that the Bone Density Scan results are within normal ranges. So chemo did not take too hard of a toll on my bone strength, nor has the aromatase inhibitor, Exemestane, that I've been taking for a year now. All systems seem to be "Go"!  :-)

We discussed the hip pain I'm still experiencing and he through out the option for me to switch, yet again, this time to Tamoxifen. The Tamoxifen has a slightly less rate of prevention against cancer recurrence, but has some other side effects that I don't like the sounds of -- like blood clots, other cancers, night sweats, to name a few. So I've decided to stay with the Exemestane for now and implement some other measures; such as physical therapy, yoga, heat, hot tub, massage, etc. We shall see. If I don't get some relief with these other measures, I can always change drugs.

So now it's on to my annual mammogram next month, which will be six months since the mammo on the left breast, the one previously with cancer. Then I'll follow up with Dr. Anderson in another six months. 

It feels good to reach these milestones and be able to check off another of "anything", days, months, years; whatever. As long as it is all good, I feel good, and I have my wonderful family and friends around me for continued support. As another breast cancer blogger recently commented at the end of an NPR piece she was interviewed for, someone who has a recurrence, a metastasis which is in-operable -- she encourages someone like me, someone who is in remission and is doing well, to get on with their lives, enjoy their health, and try not to worry about cancer. Live each day to the fullest, and enjoy what you have. So thank you, Ann, for that reminder. It certainly means so much more coming from you, who is doing just that, even though the outcome is so uncertain at this time.

And all this after returning from an alpaca show in Grass Valley this past weekend. It was a fun filled weekend with friends and adorable alpacas. And our lovely pacas brought home one first place blue ribbon, and two second place red ribbons.



And if you've made it this far, please leave a comment below. That would be just fabulous to know you are following along.

Debbie... aka the cancer warrior ... AND SURVIVOR!!!


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