The preliminary report came back. It stated that it’s the same cancer that was in the breast that is in the liver and bones. Which doesn’t make sense since the heavy chemo knocked it out of the breast and lymph nodes.
So now we wait for the more detailed Caris report.
I’ve been in a whirlwind of people sending me opinions of what to do, who to see for second opinions, to change hospitals, to go to Mexico or Switzerland for other therapies.
I’m now on tamoxifen as a holding pattern drug until we get more results.
I also had my birthday.
And had a Kindergarten Feast where we cooked everything.
It’s been a week.
Here is my Facebook post from today.
Two years ago today I was walking my class to art when my cell phone rang. My assistant dropped them off and went back to class.
Then I heard the words.
“The biopsy came back. It’s positive for cancer.”
Eight words that changed my life.
Eight words that changed me.
I’ve dreaded this day, yet prayed for it.
I was told I had two years….if I was lucky. How can that be lucky when I wanted forty more?
And once I got to the two years, is it now borrowed time?
But in the two years since those eight words, I’ve changed.
I’ve learned so much.
I’ve opened up more than maybe is good, or considered acceptable. However, if you could see the messages I get every day from people saying how something I shared helped them… you would understand.
You know that saying about the person who was walking on a beach throwing starfish back in the water one by one, and when told they couldn’t help them
All, the person replied, “At least I helped that one” while throwing another back in the water.
That’s what I hope I’m doing.
I’m throwing us back in the water every damn day so we keep swimming, sometimes being tossed about it the rough waves, sometimes floating peacefully and looking up at the clouds or stars, sometimes feeling like we are drowning but coming up for air and learning to breathe underwater.
Just keep swimming.
I’ve learned how to be in the moment. It’s when I think about the future and the possibility that I won’t be here to see my children or rob that I can’t breathe. So I write a different story of me at their graduations, dancing with rob at their weddings, holding grandchildren, and the simple things like waking up next to him as we grow old.
I’ve become a better teacher, and love my students even more fiercely and focus on their emotional health over academic. We dance and play and I sing I love you every day. Then? The learning becomes easy.
I’ve learned and am still learning that not everyone likes me, and thats ok. Not everyone likes peaches either. Focus on those who love and support me, and wish those who don’t a good life without me. I’ll stick with my peach loving peeps.
I’ve had amazing people come into my life. The giving room, peaceful scorpion, Ali Katz kitchen, meetinghouse deli… the nurses and doctors and front desk people… people who do their jobs but make my days brighter.
I’ve taken a leap and started yoga teacher training. Why not plan for something to keep me busy after I retire in nine years?
I’m on my fourth treatment in two years. I’ve had a breast biopsy, spinal biopsy, hospitalized for appendicitis, a laparoscopic appendectomy, an appendix biopsy, a gene test that would scare the crap out of anyone yet I still breathe, a complete remission, a recurrence, a trial, more growth, heavy IV chemo, lost my hair and shaved my head, lost forty pounds and gained it all back, joint pain, metastatic spread, liver biopsy, shots in the stomach and ass (fazzy in the Assy), met other women who have become my soul sisters, sobbed over the loss of some of them as their time here on earth ended, cheered when some proved doctors wrong and continue to inspire, taken herbs that look like brown mud, swallowed fifty to seventy pills a day for months, met healers, went to basements and parking lots to connect with them, and continue to wait for my fifth treatment plan in two years.
I’ve gotten over the stigma of CBD oil and have found it to be a godsend. I find comfort that the brand I use is called Charlottes Web, also one of my favorite children’s books. Listen, we all have endocannabinoids, which are neurotransmitters that bond to cannabinoids in your nervous system. The CBD impacts the receptor activity and reduces inflammation. It shows promise for pain, arthritis, multiple sclerosis, anxiety, depression, sleep, cancer, brain function. No THC, which is what gets you high. Totally legal, but looked down upon by the public which has been misinformed because of some rich families in the early 1900’s not wanting hemp to take over their profit margins. God forbid people get better naturally through a plant because of a stigma and profit greed. So I’m letting you know, it’s legal, and it’s ok.
This new diagnosis of metastasis in the liver and more on the bones has thrown me for a loop. Tamoxifen has some pretty horrid side effects, including secondary cancer. So now I’m emailing to see if I should just take out those organs juuuuuust in case.
I had a lovely birthday and even got an email that I’ve been selected for a grant from the Mederi center to help pay for the pills. I’ll find out on December how much I’ll receive. Every bit helps.
I’ve been swamped with information and suggestions, and some contradict each other.
Which is why I’m thankful that my
Relationship with God has become so strong, and my love for Jesus runs deep. My signs from Holy Spirit comfort me, and now I breathe and regroup and wait for the Caris test results.
Science is important.
Research is important.
So is clean eating, exercise, meditation, breathing.
Dancing and laughing is important.
Finding and connecting to others who are in the arena with you is important so you know you’re not alone.
Faith is important.
Friends and family who are there for you is important.
Love is important.
Two years later…
I’m still here.
Thank you for every “like”, comment, you give me. It seems trivial, but it means so much. It’s support.
Support holds things up.
I’ve knocked it out of the breast and lymph nodes twice, my bones once.
Now I’ll knock it out of the liver and bones again.
Third times the charm.
I am healed
I am healed
I am healed
In Jesus’s name, amen.