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Dates and Details

2010:
February 25-Mammogram
March 15-MRI
March 19-Core Biopsy
March 23-Cancer Diagnosis
April 14-Double Mastectomy
May 24-Oncologist Meeting
June 7 - Starting Tamoxifen Therapy
August 25 - Reconstruction Surgery
August 27 -Yale Second Opinion
August 31 - "Reconstruction" Complete

It has been confirmed:
No Chemo or Radiation is required

Feb.1 The Story Starts
May 2011
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    Archive for May, 2011

    Losing Some, Gaining Others

    I have to be honest  …and with all the followers that might not have connected with me directly over the last few months…it’s tough to keep up this “Cancer By The Day”. 

    I never, in my most broad scope of thinking, thought this story would go beyond me. 

    At this point, just one year out from my radical double mastectomy, I figured it would be posts and updates from ME having finished my chemo and radiation therapy. 

    Did I ever think I’d be spared?  No.

    Did I think I’d be sharing someone else’s story? No. (nonetheless my sisters!)

    I know now that I am in the rare subset where the cancer, as aggressive as mine was considered, didn’t spread further.  It took over half my left breast but it sat still and I guess didn’t choose to meet my lymph node system. 

    As you know if you’ve been following, my sister was not so lucky.  Her mammogram picked up a mass, not my invasive DCIS type of cancer, and given it’s location close to the armpit, it had spread. 

    The good news – body scans came back clear, so again – early detection  is key.  Please, I don’t nag (ok, other than my husband) but please don’t wait or delay tests.

    It’s strange to say, but obviously things picked up early are greatly beneficial to your health.  And me and my sister had a wonderful sisterhood before this hit, but we are never closer…and this will always be a glue stronger than anything you can imagine.

    OK, now I realize the post title I started with didn’t get covered — but that’s OK. 

    I’m scattered more these days and care less about being perfectly in control…so, when I thought of this post it was me thinking of the ironic nature that at the last chemo treatment, Anna lost most of her eyelashes…that’s a tough one.  Being bald, not easy, but eyelashes, it’s the beauty in your eyes that you find when you lose you hair…and the lost of eyelashes – a tough one, at this stage. 

    But, with two weeks past from the last chemo treatment, hair starts growing back.  So as you lose eyelashes, you gain your hair growth.  Gosh, I have to be honest, that’s not a fair balance.  But again, not much of this process is. BUT, we are positive and smiling.

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    The “Off” Weeks

    This week my sister and I consider it our “off” weeks…a week with no chemo appointments and where we typically sprint to get everything done before the “on week”.  Next week is the LAST “on” week! 

    We are thrilled that the 8th and final chemo treatment is Monday and at the same time, we know that the end is not there.  But rather, the following two weeks where the chemicals do their work…where days of aches, pains and fatigue kick in. 

    Each round has been a bit worse and different than the prior treatments effects. The feelings of a “blanket coming over you” typically hit right after the treatment, but never enough to not stop us from having a nice dinner together post treatment! 

    Then a bit of a waiting game…days 2 and 3, usually OK-ish.  Day 4 and 5 strong fatigue, body aches, some nausea…and Day 6 either a real dozie or a sign of the start of the climb to feeling better.  BUT, there are times where a day of illness hits out of the blue, shame you don’t know if it’s just part of normal life!

    We are cheering for Monday to close one chapter in what we see as recovery…and then there’s a months rest before the radiation begins. The story continues….

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