Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Another TNBC patient

Toni has passed and so now, in her honor, I am re-posting a post from July 7, 2011 for someone else diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer:

I remember when I first started this walk down cancer road. I was scared. Probably just as much, if not more so, than a lot of you out there. Both my parents died from cancer, my sister had Stage 2 triple negative BC, and I too was diagnosed as triple negative. I remember feeling like I couldn't breathe. I also remember my first three words....."Oh my God"....

Surely he heard my cries because for all the days that followed, I knew HE knew what HE was doing and that I must trust in HIM. You have a choice with God, just as you do this disease. You can walk with HIM/it, or away from HIM/it. I chose to walk with HIM because as I've known all my life, I know he will carry me when I am weak.

I also found it imperative to keep a sense of humor. Trust me, aside from the gravity of my situation, there were also several jokes tossed around. That and my sister's falsey tossed into the pool...where it floated..and I laughed till I cried.

All in all, the days are not going to go by any faster or slower just because you have cancer. And, I bet you will be more grateful for each sunrise and each sunset that you get to enjoy. Take each moment as they come whether you feel great, or not so great. Part of this whole deal is that the treatment designed to heal our bodies actually makes us sick at first. Just roll with it and take it as a cue from your body that it is doing its job. That is all you can do.

When you are unsure if you can do this and get through it, trust me - YOU can, and you will. There are thousands of us out here, right here, sending you blessings. We do care about YOU and your cancer and we want you to get better.

Life isn't perfect but sometimes our society strangely acts as if it is supposed to be. If that were the case, we'd be in heaven already, right?? So, don't sweat the petty stuff and don't pet the sweaty stuff. ;)

OK, that's my thoughts, now chin up, shoulders back, smile, and's going to be just fine. Hugs....

Monday, January 23, 2012


This past weekend, I found myself doing odd things at times.  Listening to loud music, louder than normal for me; eating more than normal, exercising a little less, and being a little more emotional than I might ordinarily be.  And my heart aches a little more than usual.

I know exactly why I feel this way and I can say it in one word.  Toni.  She has been my “TNBC hero”, if you will, for some time.  She has been a medical miracle in so many ways for the last few years, until the past few weeks.  And now she is in hospice, dying.  She is four years older than me with a husband and son and they are going to bury her sooner than later.

This disease is vicious and very real….it always has been.  Not just for you and me, but for the many before us who so unfairly never got to meet their grandchildren, or watch their sons and daughters walk down the aisle.  I know that research is doing what it can, but it needs to hurry up! Too many have died already.  If they can track one bovine with mad cow disease and send rockets into space – why on earth can’t they find a root cause of this DNA problem and fix us.If any researcher reads this, please hurry.....

My friend and co-worker said something this morning that resonated with me. She said, “I don’t know how you do it. I think I would rather just be driving down the road and have a heart attack and be gone than live with knowing this can or will come back for you”.   Yeah, but it is what it is.  Triple negatives know statistics are against them, but I’m intending to be on the upside of them.

And with that thought and for our Toni, I say, we must shake those moments and just really live each day.  Enjoy a walk on the beach, a funny movie, a phone conversation with an old friend, or your pup and kitten playing.  Really take it in and love that moment for it will not pass again.  And when the good Lord does come for me, I know I will have lived and loved to the best of my ability.

Hugs to all~

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Army of Women is looking for you!

The Army of Women is currently looking for women in the United States who had a benign breast biopsy after January 2000 and have NOT been diagnosed with breast cancer.  What they are writing is that some women who have had a benign breast biopsy are at higher risk of developing breast cancer than women who have not had a benign breast biopsy. 

This study will investigate whether the amount of DNA damage seen in the cells in normal
breast tissue is an indicator of risk. If you agree to participate, it will include a questionnaire, 
pathology slides from your biopsy, and paraffin from your tissue.

Researchers are looking for 400 women in this study.  Research is the only way to find a

cure for breast cancer.

You can participate if you meet this criteria:
• You are a woman over the age of 18
• You have had screening mammograms performed
• You have NOT been diagnosed with breast cancer (including DCIS)
• You had a benign breast biopsy after January 2000
• You were NOT pregnant or breastfeeding when you had the benign breast biopsy
• You were NOT using birth control pills or menopausal hormone therapy when you had 
   the benign breast biopsy
• You have NOT tested positive for the BRCA 1 or BRCA 2 mutation (if known)
• You live in the United States
If you are interested in this, please go to:  
Dr Susan Love’s Army of Women – Contact at

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Sundown Tinting in Birmingham AL

One of my best friends, Kellie, lives in Alabama and she and her husband have an auto tinting business (  They do exceptional work I might add!  Anyway, for all my friends in the Birmingham area, listen up!

Sundown Window Tinting and Design will make donations to "Making Strides" via my website at If you purchase a bumper sticker at $5.00, $4.00 will be donated to Making Strides.  They are doing this with the Arthritis Foundation and Humane Society as well.

To support this, Sundown Window Tinting & Design is giving away $600.00 worth of work (i.e. ceramic tinting of your car, paint protection, signs, printed signs, advertisement signs, banners, vehicle wraps, etc.) to a lucky purchaser of one of their bumper stickers.  All you have to do is take a picture of the bumper sticker on your vehicle and send them a picture of it on your vehicle, or you can post the picture on your facebook and friend request Sundown Window Tinting so they can see the picture on your facebook.  Once they get the picture, you will be entered into the drawing of $600.00 worth of free work at Sundown Window Tinting and Design.

Support them and they will support the thousands of others in need!  What a great idea for paying it forward to Get Up, Dress Up, and Show Up.   Which, if you will notice, that was my motto too….LOVE this!!   Please support them if you can.   AND, if you are out of town, call Kellie, she will work with you!!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Happy New Year 2012

Hello Everyone! Well, it is way after ringing in the new year, and I've fallen behind on my duties to keep you up to date on my health - and hopes. In my recent postings, you saw that I did one of my bucket list trips and went skydiving at 18,000 feet with my oldest son, Brad. That was amazing and unforgettable.  This last week, my youngest son, Kyle, was in town and his Christmas present was a ticket to jump - along with many other things of course.  So, why did I give him "this gift"?  Well, one, because he really wanted to jump and two, because for me, I felt a little closer to God and I hope he did too.

We did a lot of other things while he and his girlfriend were here. We made pottery, saw the Blue Man Group, went on an air boat ride, and watched movies (our favorite past time). We went and saw Sherlock Holmes - Robert Downey Jr AND Jude Law at the same time? YES!!! lol

Additionally, I nursed a muscle spasm in my back that is unlike anything I've ever felt before so I continued with physical therapy and that helped loosen the muscles up.

I have not done much research as of late because over the Christmas holiday, I learned of a friend going into hospice.  She, too, is triple negative and has been such a fighter and good christian woman.  She knows what is coming, sooner that she would have liked, but she looks forward to a peaceful heaven, and to greeting us all again one day. Me too.  Anyway, her prognosis set me back a little bit, so I just didn't feel up to writing. My apologies.

I tell people that cancer was good to me. I know - CRAZY!!! Right?  But in many ways, it was. It brought me back to my faith; it made both my family and friendships stronger - in a very real way; and it helped me become less vain. Every day, I can choose to be happy or not, and I choose to be ecstatic for having more time.  Am I sick? Nope, not at all.  I am two years NED. But I won't take one day for granted.

I want every moment with my children to be something they remember with a smile, or a laugh. I want my co-workers to know that I do care and I'm not just "performing", and even when I walk my dogs, I want to focus on their joy of just being with me.  Right now, I have all three dogs and a kitten on me and yes, typing this is a challenge as the kitten chases the mouse.

Resolutions: I have given thought to a resolution as many do each year. This year, I think I would like to knock off another item or two on the bucket list and continue to live as if I'm dying.  I mean, after all - no one gets out alive, right?

In closing, more often than not, we don't know how much time is left, but it's what we do with that time and the people we share it with that is so important.  So come on, join me - do something today that makes you step outside your comfort zone, or check an item off YOUR list, or even just sit and quiet your soul and listen for God. He's still there, waiting for all of us.

Many blessings for a happy and healthy 2012.