Stage 4 No More
In November 2015 I was diagnosed with Stage 4, Triple Positive, Invasive Ductal Metastatic Breast Cancer. I had a LOT of bone involvement, tumors in my liver and LOTS of lymph nodes. My PET scan looked like a Christmas Tree. I started my treatments with 10 rounds of radiation to a bone in my pelvis and a few vertebrae they were afraid would break or the tumors would compromise my spinal cord shortly. On day 6 of radiation I started chemo.
I had six rounds of TCHP, minus the P after round 2 due to an allergic reaction. I also had 5 transfusions and a unit of plasma and had to go in for fluids (2 liters after my first round). Despite all that, with each treatment I began to feel better than I had in a long time.
I followed chemo with a double mastectomy, and because of skin involvement was unable to do reconstruction at the time. Then I did 25 rounds of radiation.
Throughout my treatments I worked on a healthy diet, getting exercise when I could, a positive attitude, reaching out and serving others, and doing some other nutritional things like taking suggested supplements under the care of a holistic M.D. and jucing vegetables. I also did a lot of work on my thoughts, and what goes on between my ears. Our brains are so powerful.
My pathology from surgery all came back clean and by October of 2016 I had my first No Evidence of Disease PET scan.
I am now almost three years out. Still NED.
My story is not everyone’s. I can’t really speak to why, but I want to share that there is always hope. Always. Our doctors and nurses are wonderful, and they are knowledgeable, but they are not clairvoyant. They can only make a best guess at what our futures will be. So listen to the diagnosis, and listen to the advised treatments. But be careful about listening to anyone who thinks they are doing you a service by giving you a death sentence.
I will forever be thankful for doctors who gave me hope, who told me we had our work cut out for us, but never gave me a prognosis, not ever. They probably saved my life because of it.I can’t help wondering if more people would start beating the statistics if they weren’t told them so often. Like I said, Our minds are so powerful. They tend to believe what we tell them. So tell them hope. Tell them life and love and all things beautiful. Then even if your life is cut shorter than you expected, you can still walk in joy and peace, not in fear, anger and anguish. God is the only one who really knows what will happen.
Give yourself permission to LIVE.