Sunday, January 17, 2021

Living With Stage 4 Breast Cancer Is My Semi-Charmed Kind Of Life

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I led a fairly charmed life with Stage 4 Breast Cancer  up until about the age of 29. I had a loving family, I was always surrounded by good friends, and for whatever reason, life just always seemed to work out for me. I know it sounds strange and maybe even a little arrogant, but I have always known in the back of my mind that life was going to work out in my favor. I was the gal who had a flat tire 100 yards from the tire shop. Seriously, that’s a true story.I had a boss who liked to say, when one door closes, open a window. I guess you could say I made it my personal credo in life. When my initial stage 2 breast cancer treatment left us wondering if we’d be able to have biological children, we decided not to leave our family up to chance. We went ahead and pursued adoption and Henry was the most amazing reward!

And when my stage 4  Breast Cancer  recurrence threatened our new family, I bought a wig and held my head up high. This was our little family and we had worked too hard to let cancer stand in our way now. Chris declared we were going to be the ones to beat the odds and we decided to do what we do best — We’d roll with it.

Now, almost four years later, my breast cancer has spread to my lungs, liver, bones and brain. The gold standard drugs have all failed me and now the doctors are asking me what I want to do next. I’m at the point in my treatment where I’m too educated to believe I can live with metastatic breast cancer for three decades like a chronic disease, but I’m still holding on to the hope of seeing a game-changing medical breakthrough in my lifetime.

I’m sad to admit my faith has officially been shaken. People talk about bumps in the road? Let’s just say I’ve had the summer of potholes and ditches. In July, I underwent whole brain radiation to try and zap those pesky brain mets we’ve been watching over the past year. I lost my voice as a result of palliative radiation, forcing me to relinquish my last vice left: my morning coffee. And to top it off, I went to Houston to enroll in a clinical trial and I wound up hospitalized for almost a week with a nasty case of pneumonia.

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