First the Pain, Then the Rising…

Sunday was the pain day.

Monday was the rising.

I got up and walked two miles while Maddie ran. She ended up finding out she had an early morning staff meeting, so she ran around our neighborhood, while I walked with Oprah and her friends in my ear.

Then I went to the Peaceful Scorpion. I showed danielle my feet which are showing improvement with Donnie Yance’s cream. For an hour she worked her magic with a massage and reflexology. She used hot stones and was extra careful of the blisters on my feet and the rash on my arms and chest. We both can usually feel all the “cricks” of blockages and tightness in my body, but yesterday was smooth. I left feeling relaxed and so much better.

I brought my kids to sailing then decided last minute to head to the Giving Room. It’s been about two weeks and that’s just too long. Paula and I headed out to eat lunch at the nearby North Fork Table Lunch Truck. I used to go there on “winery days” with my friends, and instead of the big hot dog, I had a tomato, mozzarella and pesto lunch. I also splurged and had some amazing fries. Life is for living, right?

We sat outside in this magical wooded area with picnic tables, and nature was alive. There were big monarch butterflies and baby monarch butterflies flying and dancing around. A red bird came and flew from table to table. Paula and I caught up, and it was lovely.

I picked up my kids from sailing, grabbed Maddie, then got dinner from Sarah which was amazing as usual. Then I set up for the evening.

When I went to yoga teacher training, I wasnt sure what I would do with it. I didnt see myself in a studio. I just knew I was supposed to do it.

In the last week, it’s been revealed to me what it’s purpose may be.

I’ve had three different mothers all ask if I could do yoga for their children. You see, adults aren’t the only ones with anxiety and trauma and big life things happening. I worked with one little boy last week and he was my first. Last night I worked with a mom and two daughters and we used my basement space. It’s not totally finished, but it’s amazing what some lights in jars and fake flowers will do. People think yoga is this super bendy, headstand and crazy poses practice. That’s not my yoga.

Mine is essential oils, giving yourself massages, closing your eyes and breathing deep and breathing in a new way to reset your panic buttons, and finding your balance. It’s super easy, gentle, and after an hour you find yourself under a blanket with your legs and feet being rubbed while you breathe for about five or ten minutes.

I received another text from another mom and I’ll be doing a session with her son as well. It’s good for me too, as it makes me practice while I show the children what to do.

Then I made homemade strawberry shortcake and the girls and my kids swam and relaxed in the hot tub. It was peaceful and healing.

Perhaps that’s why I went to yoga, or maybe not. The purpose will unfold and reveal itself fully to me in time.

Today one of my best friends is driving down to sit with me. It will be a healing day of laughter and just being.

First I had the pain.

Then I had the rising.

It’s hard to have faith that there will be a rising when in the midst of what I call “the dark night and day of the soul”. But so far, there has been good that always came after the pain.

The sun always shines after the rain.

I told Danielle about a scene in the Spider-Man movie that is hidden in the very very end of the movie after the very last credit scrolls by. A character looks like he is on the beach, the sounds of the waves and seagulls on the shore, sand all around. Then it turns out he is in a room that is a virtual reality room. I know there are virtual reality classes that are proving to help people with pain, as my friend Bob Jester is pioneering the way. I said wouldn’t it be great if hospitals and senior homes and rehabs had these rooms. A beach scene, a forest with a stream, a mountain range. Changing your view can change your emotional state.

Imagine the patients who have been isolated in their rooms for weeks with just a window. I keep thinking of my friends Eileen and her daughter Johanna who yesterday had her 102nd surgery. I see what we pay sports figures and movie stars and YouTube people. If only we could find a way to fund more research and ways to ease the anxiety along the way.

A girl can dream.

Today I’m tired but excited for my visit.

I’m also hoping the tomcats win because I’m just not ready for joe to leave yet. Tomorrow is his birthday and I’ve imagined him pitching and winning the final game on his birthday.

Today may he win, many laughs surround me, and more healing happen.

In Jesus’s name, amen.



Spider-Man saved the Day

Spider-Man saves the day yesterday. Let me explain…

Yesterday was bad.

Exhausted, dark, painful.

Laid on a couch all day and went between crying, trying to hydrate to replace all the water I was crying out, getting herbs down, putting lotion on my feet, my kids asking over and over what they could do, rob saying it will get better, and my mind saying it will only get worse.

Facebook can be a blessing and a curse at the same time. It keeps you connected so you don’t feel alone and can ask questions in support groups. It can make you feel depressed seeing everyone else taking their kids to the beach and enjoying summer. It can hurt you to the heart seeing people live their lives without a single thought about you.

It was a bad day.

As Alexander once said, “A no good, terrible, horrible, very bad day.”

My sister came by and her kids swam with my kids. It’s amazing the people who leave you, and beautiful the people who stay. I was asleep when she came, woke up and cried, and she got me water and rubbed my arm until I went back to sleep. It’s not easy seeing someone you love in pain, but she has stayed.

Not everyone does.

I’m so glad she stayed.

We salvaged it by deciding to treat the kids to spider man. I didnt even shower yesterday, and didn’t care. The movie theatre is dark.

Of course… there were people there I knew, but they were students and friends of Maddie, and she doesn’t care being seen out with her family. For two hours I stayed awake and escaped. Maddie is now more sure she wants to be a screen writer or in film, probably because she saw it got her mom off the couch and smile for a little bit.

My lips are also now sore, so I rubbed coconut ice cream on them when I got home. It made the pain a bit sweeter.

I emailed my oncologist, because I posted in two of my xeloda support groups and the girls all said that it’s a crazy drug. Every single day is different, and no….I’m not crazy. With all of the other chemo treatments I’ve been on, it would slowly build, and I would know which day to expect which side effects.

With this one?

It’s like Forrest Gumps chocolate, and you never know what you’re going to get.

They said that dose reductions help, which is always scary. Part of me is like, give me all the medicine to kill the cancer, and the other part of me is like a little cancer is fine. I’ll take cancer out of the liver but still in the bones if i can keep quality of life.

The things you never think you’ll bargain with God about. Then Oprah and her friends tell you to expect miracles and yadda yadda yadda, so you get confused. Do I give it all up to God? No wait… I was told the only way to get to God is to ask Jesus. But then others who have healed said you can control your life and your destiny, so if it is to be is it up to me?

Then you read about another stage four person who you followed has died, and she thought all the things and prayed all the prayers, so you just end up breathing again.

I said I was like Yoda yesterday, repeating “I am one with the force and the force is in me.” Sitting still, breathing slowly, saying, “The cream, please pass me.”

The good news today is Donnie Yance’s cream is working. I stayed off of my feet all day and the blisters have hardened up and started to get better. Some women said that it takes a while to get the dosage right, but then the chemo becomes easier. Maybe that’s why I’ve got all summer to get it right, so I can be fine for work.

I need to work.

Not only for the money and benefits…

But I love my job. It also keeps me busy from the dark thoughts when I’m surrounded by kids who believe in unicorns and magic.

Today I’m bringing Maddie to run early at a park. Then I have a treatment with Danielle. My kids have sailing, I’ll keep my feet up and rest. I’m doing yoga tonight for another young person I know who needs it.

I need it too.

I found an article on Facebook yesterday that showed how oncologists tend to give the highest dosage to see what a patient can handle, then lessen it, even though research shows lesser doses are just as effective. It’s like killing a mosquito with a blowtorch. I took it as a sign and emailed my doctor for a possible discussion on dose reduction. Even one less pill might make a difference.

Thursday is a big day and we will see.

I’m feeling emotionally stronger today.

I am taking steps to help feel better and protect my life, my soul, my mind, my heart.

I’m sharing a lot here, and it’s a vulnerable thing to do. To those who have stuck around and comment or even just hit the simple

Little like button, you don’t know how much you help me as I go along. I went through my lists and removed all those who stopped commenting or liking.

This life is precious and real and messy and beautiful, and only those who want to stand in the dark and in the light with me and let me know they are here get to stay. Feeling like you don’t matter while feeling like you’re dying is a hard thing.

Feeling like death is closer than you think and that the doctors you fired were right, even if only for a day, brings clarity.

Today I will love this who love me right back.

Today I will heal more.

Today will be a good day.

In Jesus’s name, amen.



Thank you, Oprah

I’ve been walking and listening to podcasts by Oprah Winfrey. She has these amazing and enlightened souls sharing all of the wisdom they’ve learned. It makes walking easier, and I end up better for it.

The past two days I’ve summarized what I’ve heard and learned from Marianne Williamson and Carolyn Myss. These women are doing soul work.

Here are my summaries…

“Today’s walk and healing talk?

The instrument to heal is the soul.

Think of someone you or something you cannot forgive.

Imagine they come up to you and say “I’m

Sorry. I never meant to hurt you. Please forgive me.”

The thing is…

That isn’t


Why didn’t

That clean


The table.

It’s that the “I never meant to

Hurt You” goes to your soul and

Your souls says,” What do you mean

You never meant

To hurt me? WHAT?”

Let’s redo the scene.

Imagine the person coming up to

You and saying,”I need

To speak

With you. I consciously


What I was doing. I knew it. I heard my


Tell me


To do it and it didn’t

Matter to me. I sinned

Against you.


I know

The actions

Of what I did changed the course of

Your life. I knew what I was doing. It was

Conscious. And how much it hurt you did not stop me.

This is not a boo boo.


Not an apology.

I knew what I was doing was wrong and I did it anyway.

I’m asking


Your forgiveness.”

THAT is what heals.

THAT is what gets the sword out of your soul.

And if the people who hurt you do not have the ability or compassion or courage or love to see the hurt and damage they’ve done to your soul…

Forgive them, as Jesus commanded.

Then go far far away and find the ones who love you.”

~Carolyn Myss

“The universe is like a house.

We are all the lamps.

The light doesn’t light up unless it’s plugged in.

If I identify only with me, I’m only the lamp.

If i identify with others, I’m the light shining from the energy because I’m plugged in.

The universe is intentional.

The acorn doesn’t say I’m going to become an oak tree. It is just there, ready to become used for the larger intention of life.

The universal imprint is in life Itself.

First the cell actualizes to be the best it can be. Then the cells work together, and then it becomes part of the higher functioning for the higher good of organs, and then the self body.

What happened to my cells?


Cancer cells are not interested in a actualization, collaboration and service.

It disconnects from the universe and is like a lamp that isn’t plugged in.

When we do things for ourselves, we become transactional instead of relational.

Thy will be done is the highest relational moment.

How can I help others?

Dear spirit, use me.

Dear God, use me.

The tool to accomplish this is relationship.

If I’m only thinking of me, then I want to receive only for me, and I’m not aligned.

I go into relationships to get what i want.

Which is really saying

“How do i get others to do what I need to get

What i want?”

As lamps, you’re on your table and I’m in mine. But enlightened, our light from the lamps reaches all the corners of the earth.

Think of Waves. I’m afraid of the ocean. Would I be afraid of others Waves, or would I realize I AM the ocean.

The universe assigns relationships.

We are all assigned all the time. We ask what our purpose is and where should we be and what should we do. Instead, we are right where we should be and with who we should be all the time. But that doesn’t mean we always like each other.

It means we have the best opportunity to

Grow from each other. Right when we feel things are Going well, the universe sends us things or people who we see as challenging or hard or hurtful.

Relationships are opportunities to heal the soul.

When a person shows you their wounds, their triggers, which are no different than a boo boo on a child. The ego mind resists God and is all about self, and sees the wounds as character defects. We say, “Man, you’re rude. You’re needy.” We resist the relationship.

But the enlightened person says, “You’re wounded. Would God reject the wounded. It doesn’t mean I need to be with you,

But to stand by not in judgement but in love. The purpose is for us to stand and learn and evolve beyond the cancer thought.”

That’s what is happening now in the world.

We can choose our encounters.

Wake up and ask, “What would you have me say? Do? And to whom?”

Either God is in everyone or God is in no one.

The highest thought is not I “am Unique.”

The highest thought is “I am like everyone else.”


We heal.

What happens with cancer is cells start protecting the cancer and tumor. That’s like us when we hang on to negative thoughts.

We may not be evolved enough to not have the bad thoughts of others come to us, but instead, not protect it by talking about it and sending texts. Don’t let self hatred pose as self love.

We all have a tendency to perceive without love.

We all have wounds. Betrayal, unkindness.

Plug in and pray for those who hurt you and train your muscles, so eventually our muscles are trained and we rest and take a stand for self love.

Now, that doesn’t mean we don’t fall off and get it wrong and do things we Wish we hadn’t done.

But we can learn and get better.

My love will free me.

I am a lamp through which this light is meant to shine. The lamp doesn’t choose where the light shines.

It just shines on everyone.

The people who have achieved the most in the world have achieved a fraction of what is potential in all of us.

There may be shadows.

But you?

You shines the light.

“This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine…”

-today’s walk with maryianne Williamson and Oprah.”

The Mederi Way

So what did I talk about with the interview?

The purpose of this video is to reach other practitioners.



Donnie Yance is brilliant. He has spent the past twenty five years learning and studying and researching.

My Chinese herbalist is brilliant and has learned about herbs and which ones heal which cells.

What will happen to me when these men retire and are no longer available?

And how did these two brilliant men BOTH end up on my team?

Why can’t these two men be on EVERYONES team?

For the better good.

Thy will be done.

How are you using me, God, for the better good?

Donnie is starting an online course for practitioners to learn the Mederi Way. How healing can be gentle, can be supplements and herbs and exercise and diet and spiritual growth in conjunction with the medicine to work synergistically to heal the cancer, and the life and soul.

Make more Donnie’s, so there can be more Keri’s.

It’s not easy, this work.

It’s definitely not cheap, this program.

But is it worth it?

Is it worth being here to teach Maddie to drive?

Is it worth being here to see Morgan not care about her bald spot and ask me to box braid her hair?

Is it worth is to see Quinn sail by himself on a boat?

Is it worth it to hear stories from Donnie of people who may not be free from cancer but have been able to love and live and thrive?


So, I told my story.

I cried.

I told a man how much I love Donnie and Erin and the Mederi Staff.

I told a man how my husband listens to every call and can remember the hope spark Donnie told us when I can’t sleep.

I told a man how i used to see my job as a parent as to protect them from all pain, but isn’t my job to actually raise humans who are empathetic and kind and resilient? And with Mederis help, although I dont wish cancer on any family, my children are stronger and kinder than most others I know.

Yes, we are more mindful with money because this is expensive. But maybe someday more doctors will offer this, and insurance will start to cover this program.

So that others will have hope.

In Jesus’s name, amen.




Yesterday’s hashtag physically, mentally, and emotionally hurt to write.

But it needed to have shock value so the people making decisions could feel the urgency of allowing stage four patients to have a voice. Today?

I’ve come up with a new hashtag.

Let me explain…

The other day while “Walking with Oprah”, I was listening to a podcast on how the universe has your back.

I’ve become what I call a “Christian Spiritualist”, in that Jesus is my lord and savior, God is my father, but they have a whole universe of spirit working with them helping us all while we inhabit our shells. I’m still up in the air about what happens when we die. Do we stay in heaven forever, or does God say, “I have more work for you to do. Want to go back and try again? This time you get to be this person and live this story” . Sort of like a hermit crab. You move from shell to shell each time, a bigger shell, a bigger life, until the life you lead is a life that helped many. Then, when you die a final time, God is all like, “Well, there’s nothing else for you to do. Stay and rest, and wait for all of your loved ones to come back up. They’ll be here in a blink an eye.”

(I’ve been sent nasty scary messages from bible thumpers before… so stay in your line, thumpers. I’ve heard it all before, thank you very much.)

Anyhow, while listening to the podcast, it finally clicked on how to pray. “Thy will be done” is probably THE single hardest line to say, especially for a control freak. I’m like Veruca Salt, and instead of wanting an Oompa Loompa NOW, I want the cancer gone NOW. Here is where it clicked.

Being a kindergarten teacher, I’m surrounded by children all day who believe the impossible can happen. I push on my port in my chest and begin to float to my tippy toes, and tell them it’s my magic flying button that I use at Night. They believe in fairies and unicorns and Santa and mythical bunnies.

ANYTHING is possible in their world.

So during the podcast I heard the words that clicked.

Maybe MY prayers are in the way of God’s plan. Maybe this is the story He told me was my life to live because something big is going to come of the cancer that will help others. I’ve had a woman who is truly gifted tell me that spirit has shown her how my blood will help not only cure breast cancer, but many cancers, and I will help many, many people.

As someone who was told I would be dead within weeks or months when first diagnosed almost three years ago, and again last November…

I’ll take story number one please.

Why not?

I believe in miracles.

Life is a dark and hard place if you think this is all there is.

God whispers to me as well.

While walking with Oprah, He told me to text someone I love who also needed to hear a message of how sometimes he doesn’t let us open the window because he is opening a big door for us. I texted this person. I found out later that this person got the text right after the door had been opened in a big way.


It doesn’t mean I cant ask for help, or be specific in my prayers though. I asked God to help us financially. I got a call the next day that we are getting a partial refund from a bill we paid. I asked God to use this cancer story to help others.

The next day, MetUp contacted me and asked to share my blog. This is a national organization that advocates for stage four breast cancer patients. Actually, they also have a London chapter. They shared my blog, and now women and men from all over are shown the story. The faith, the treatments. The supplements, the herbs, the swooshing, the little signs of miracles.

The amazing thing is that I can see some of the strangers who clicked and shared. They all said it’s like I wrote their words. Falling down the hole when the trapdoor opens, being alone on a ledge that is crumbling, hearing others yelling support or crying in the dark…. our stories are all so different, but we are all in holes.

It’s not easy sharing this pilgrimage. This journey. This fall down the hole. It’s personal. It’s like the nightmare of writing my diary in elementary school and everyone reading it, except I don’t care who knows who my crush is, because he loves me right back. I’ve gotten thicker skin, and those who don’t want to read or support this story have been weeded out or removed themselves. That hurt, but the skin got thicker, and maybe it prepared room for others who put lotion of the skin and send support daily.

My blog website exploded a bit yesterday. I’ve got thousands and thousands of people who have read the blog, from all over the world.

What does it mean?

Physically, nothing. I’m still me, mom to three, wife to Rob, teacher, friend… Keri.

But it also meant something.

It meant that for a day, there were people who my words helped. Helped them feel not so alone in their freefall. Maybe they will click around the blog and follow the freefall of mine from the beginning, and see all the moments of light and love that have slowed the fall.

It’s like the starfish analogy.

Thousands of starfish on the sand and I’m throwing them back one by one. I cant help everyone, but I made a difference to each one I touched.

Keep swimming, starfish.

I see you.

Keep going.

Today is the big Jamesport parade, and it starts at 6:30. It’s a great parade and carnival, and supports our volunteer fire department. Everyone should go sometime this week and just buy a bracelet or food and support the men and women who will be there for you. They are the brave starfish throwers.

We saw my niece for her birthday/graduation, as my kids were all scattered the last few weeks. It was also “cake day” at the Mattituck Yacht Club, and Quinn was besides himself. The board of the club will never know how much this scholarship for my kids means to us. They took my starfish and are teaching them to sail. They are a blessing.

Today, I’m changing and using a new hashtag.

Im saying that #deadby2020 will turn into #curedin2023. (The medium told me seven years from diagnosis, so that’s the hashtag).

May it be so.

In Jesus’s name, amen.




Today I walked with my Maddie. She is brilliant. We started with Oprah and Caroline Myss, but then Maddie used a point she said and began what I call her own epic Maddie Ted Talk. I wish I recorded it. Here is a picture of where we walked to… a place where the sidewalk ends.

“There is a place where the sidewalk ends

And before the street begins,

And there the grass grows soft and white,

And there the sun burns crimson bright,

And there the moon-bird rests from his flight

To cool in the peppermint wind.

Let us leave this place where the smoke blows black

And the dark street winds and bends,

Past the pits where the asphalt flowers grow

We shall walk with a walk that is measured and slow,

And watch where the chalk-white arrows go

To the place where the sidewalk ends.

Yes we’ll walk with a walk that is measured and slow,

And we’ll go where the chalk-white arrows go,

For the children, they mark, and the children, they know

The place where the sidewalk ends.”

~shell Silverstein


I bet that headline for your attention.

I dont even like writing it because words are powerful. But let me explain that hashtag…here is my Facebook post today.

And so it begins.

Hand foot syndrome.

I was hoping it was just blisters from walking three miles day lately, but after posting in the private support groups…

It’s HFS.

This are the letters that stand for hand foot syndrome in the groups.

I say it stands for holy f*cking sh*t.

There are blisters on the sides of my big toes and feet, my feet and hands are turning a red color and tingling, and they look swollen like they are sausages ready to pop out of their casing.

So what do I do?

I just got a special cream from Donnie Yance that I slathered all over my feet and hands. (And no, it doesn’t smell like lavender. )Some of the women suggested I put band aids over the blisters to help them stay safe.

I’m going to up my water intake, and maybe take more detox baths. The last thing you want to do in a 100 degree weather is take a bath, right? But I’ve got to get the toxic chemicals out.

Instead of “sweating to the oldies”, I’m “sweating to get old”.

I’m still going to walk, because my skin is the biggest organ. Sweating is detoxing, so I’ll throw on extra socks and sweat away as I walk and listen to podcasts. I’m finding I love it. Music is ok to listen to, but man… Oprah has some amazing podcasts that are about thirty minutes long. I get inspired and calm and find clarity from some awesome spiritual people who have done the work. You may be walking by yourself, but you’re not alone. Kris Carr has a good one that felt like she was telling my story. I also see people I know every day as I walk. They drive by and honk or wave. I feel like the “Keri is walking for her life”’parade and I wave back. I used to be self conscious. Now I’ll get up, throw on a hat, not even worry about making my eyebrows fleek, and hit the road. I love this body, fifty extra pounds and blisters and cancer and all. This body is still working for me, and has been the “home of my soul” for almost 37 years.

Thank you, body.

Keep going.

Keep going.

Keep f*cking going.

I love you.

You’re the best!

Now let’s see if we can clear out the cancer.

I have three days left of chemo for this cycle. I can still walk and will be more mindful to put my feet up whenever I can to reduce swelling. This is where I learn to start to plan my day out better.

When can I sit and when can I stand.

According to the ladies on the group, every cycle is different. I’ll see what happens the next three days. Then next week I see my oncologist and if we have to lower the dose or change the frequency from two weeks on and one week off to one week on and one week off, then we will. I am on a really high dose right now because of all the pesky cancer. Not many women are on 4,000 mg in my groups. Most are 2,000.

That always take my breath when I see how much lower their doses are.

When you are diagnosed with stage four cancer, it’s like a trap door has opened up and you freefall. The thing is, there is no bottom to land on until you hit the coffin. Some women fall a few months, others fall for years.

But we are all falling… all the time… down, down, down.

The choice is where do we look as we fall.

Looking down paralyzes you. All you see is darkness. Then you can’t breathe and wonder how long the scary fall will be, and as scary as is it is, you don’t want it to end.

So you look up.

You look for the light that is still there, sometimes bright and sometimes small.

You keep looking for the rope that will drop for you to hold onto or the ledge that you can rest upon for a little while until it gives way. You think about the ladder that is trying to be built that might someday help you climb up out of the hole and then you can close the trapdoor forever. You pray the ladder gets built quickly because the ledge is small and cracking and your hands and feet hurt and the rope burns are stinging.

That’s stage four.

MetUp is an advocacy group that ran a social media blitz yesterday. Deadline2020 is a group run by the NBCC (National Breast Care Coalition) that’s states they are dedicated to ending breast cancer by January 1, 2020. But… they dont have Metavivor or MetUp representing stage four patients on their board. Not only is stage four considered the pink elephant in the room, they won’t even let the elephant IN the room.

Pink is NOT enough.

The bulk of the funding goes to to telling women to eat right, exercise, and get mammograms. ONLY two to five percent of what is raised by all that Pink… that freaking pink… goes to research for metastatic breast cancer.

Stage four.

The only stage that kills.

So while everyone is all pink, pink, pink, save the tatas, squish those boobies…

They all ignore stage four because we are the scary women already falling down the hole from the trap door that suddenly opened up and swallowed us whole, dragging our families and friends over to the edge to do their best to give support, and we are the women the lesser stages never want to be.

So no one looks at us.

No one listens.

We just hear other women from their own trapdoor hole in their freefalls yelling tips and tricks on branches that hurt as your fall down your own hole and how to make it suck less.

But here’s the thing.

Research has started to extend lives. Where women used to get diagnosed then spend the little time left preparing to die, with short falls down the hole. women are now living longer and speaking up.

Raising our voices and getting loud.

Well behaved women rarely make history, right?

I liken it to the AIDS movement. It was when the AIDS patients started shouting and yelling that they were heard.

Breast cancer patients are usually women, and in the past, older women. Moms, grandmas… women who would rather go and choke to death in a restroom than make a scene in public and ask for help.


It’s men AND women. Men can get breast cancer too. Women are being diagnosed younger and younger.

It’s not just breast cancer either.

Lung cancer, prostate, bladder, brain…

We are all fighting for our lives.

But stage four is ignored.

So yesterday we were loud, and told deadline2020 that without adding metavivor or MetUp representatives to their board, they should switch their name to deadby2020. The women who initially came up with this idea?

They’re dead.

So we pick up the flag and carry on down the field, making noise and not making nice, while riding on our elephants and saying, “SEE US! HEAR US!! HELP US!”

Screw the pink.

Get color blind and begin to see all the colors.

*stepping off soapbox*

I had a lovely night despite the HFS and threw a party for my dad. (Sometimes the trap door has an elevator for people to come down and visit and remind you of life before floor dropped out from under you). We had a beautiful night and the kids all had fun. Birthdays are important.

Each one I get to have will be cherished by me.

May I have forty more.

In Jesus’s name, amen.

What I learned in three miles today…

Sometimes your plans are in the way of God’s plans. It’s time to surrender.

We have to become brave enough to wonder what will happen if we give up control and let God take over.

Resistance needs to go.

Realign and reconnect to the presence.

Receive the blessings.

Take your hands off the wheel through prayer.

The secret to prayer is to stop praying for what we think we need but instead what is for the highest good for all.

Start to focus on what’s thriving. We focus on the absence of what we don’t have but instead on the things and blessings on that are already thriving.

Obstacles are detours in the right direction. Rumi said, “The wound is the place where the light enters you.” Maybe the loss of a job leads you to do what you always dreamed. The divorce leads you to love yourself more. The diagnosis leads you to get closer to God.

Look for signs. Ask for them. Thank you universe and God for showing me a sign that I’m headed in the right direction. It’s your job to listen.

When you think you’ve surrendered, surrender more.

Those who are certain of the outcome can afford to wait without the anxiety.

So close your eyes, take a deep breath, and thank the universe for taking away what needed go away. Ask for what needs to

Be done and said and to whom.


Where would have me go?

What would you have me do?

What would you have me say and do?

We need a connection and spiritual foundation, especially in these challenging


Our true power lies in knowing that in the midst of uncertainty we are held.

And the universe has our back.

~from my three mile walk listening to gabby Bernstein on super soul podcast.

The Carousel in the Arena

It’s been one blow after another lately in the arena.

Meg, who loved rainbows and messaged me about God, passed away last year. Every rainbow I see I hear her words, “God’s promise”.

Alycia, who traveled to meet my herbalist, planned a road trip with her children that never happened, and became my first soul sister, passed away this spring.

Leila, my west coast soul sister, force advocate for her little boy with Down’s syndrome and light of grace and grit, passed away two weeks ago. I have her key around my neck and can now explain to people what it means without crying.

Yesterday I saw my daughter’s orthodontist post something that took my breath. I had been invited to the North Fork Breast Health Coalition Gala in April and met an amazing and beautiful young woman. She was a keynote speaker, and was as gorgeous as she was strong. I went up to her and we spoke, and I was struck with how young she was. She worked at my daughters orthodontist office apparently. Yesterday, they posted she died.

Four months.

Four months after I met her and she was so strong and you wouldn’t even know she had stage four breast cancer.

That’s how quick things can change.

This morning my dear Sophie Sabbage, author of “The Cancer Whisperer” and “Lifeshocks” has announced that her brain tumors are back for the fourth time. Sophie was a beacon of hope to Alycia, and Alycia and I would have a little book club as we discussed Sophie’s grace. Sophie gave a beautiful TED talk, and today in England they have a full article on her.

Reading about Nikki passing yesterday was a life shock. It reminded me how quickly things can go wrong. It also reminded me to make every moment count.

Rob and I walked three miles early in the morning, as the research has showed how important exercise is to help prolong stage four patient lives. Then we all got to work. Rob worked on the outside of the house, and the kids and I straightened up the inside a bit.

I made my smoothie from Donnie Yance and made a Facebook live video. I’ve got many cancer patients following me on Facebook. If I can share how sea vegetables, whey protein, mushroom powder, fruit extract, and coconut along with some other things can help fight cancer, I will.

Then, for the first time all summer, around three in the afternoon, we all went into the pool as a family. I had to be careful of the air quality and the heat, so we waited until later in the day. My brother in law brought my sisters girls over to cool down, and we all swam and floated for a long time with the “sprites”. We were supposed to go to a party but I was too tired to make the trip. (Another time, Leuly!❤️)

By 7:00 we realized we had no food for dinner, so we threw the kids in the car and went to dinner in Greenport. It was beautiful, we ate on a rooftop outdoor patio as the sun set, then Quinn wanted to ride the carousel. All three kids went on the carousel, and as they waited in line, I listened to the music, held robs hand and cried.

I want to live, damnit.

I want Meg and Alycia and Leila to be here to see their children grow up.

I want sophie and all my friends in this arena with me to live and not have to breathe underwater every damn day as we move from treatment to treatment while still doing our best to live our lives and hold on to every moment while not questioning our past or fearing our future.

I want scientists and politicians to find the funding to get the breakthrough needed for us all. I saw footage of the Apollo mission and fifty years ago they were smart enough to figure out how to monitor a mans heart as he took his first step on the moon in outer space. The steps we’ve made technologically since then are awe inspiring. How can we not have figured this cancer crap out yet so that women and men aren’t dying from it every single day anymore?

Despite the tone, I’m doing ok right now.

I’ve started week two of cycle two of this chemo. Either the CEA tumor marker is a really bad sign, a mistake, or a good sign that it’s dying off and cancer cells are floating around. In two weeks I go and get it tested again.

In the meantime, I breathe. The extreme fatigue that made me cry it wa so bad is gone. The other night we had a fire in the fire pit, and rob, Quinn and I laid on our backs with our feet dangling in the pool as we looked at the stars and the sparks floating up towards them. I held Quinn’s hand and told him to always remember that moment. It’s a summer memory in the making that he can tuck in his heart and hold onto forever.

As the kids got on the carousel last night, I took pictures of them. These three children fill my heart so much sometimes it overflows. Many of you don’t know them in “real life”, but those who do, know they are as kind, smart, and loving as I write about here. I’ve been an overprotective mom, and that’s ok. They’ve proven to be strong the last two years, and have faced the worst this world can throw at you. They continue to walk with humor and love and grace and grit and gratitude.

Rob held my hand as I kept wiping away my tears so the kids wouldn’t see as they got on the carousel and said I’m going to be ok because we have no other choice.

And we don’t.

His faith in my future keeps me breathing.

I was up a lot last night, researching new trials and therapies. I searched the comments of many groups looking for the women who posted they’ve been on this therapy for two to three years for hope. My last four therapies lasted three months only because that’s how long it takes to see if it’s working. I really need this one to work. Another friend, Lisa, just shared she is on her eleventh therapy in four years and research shows that the faster and more therapies you fail the worse the prognosis.

But a prognosis is not a fact, and we are all a statistic of one.

After the carousel, we walked by where I used to bartend in Greenport. I was the very first bartender at Crabby Jerry’s then went to the big time at Claudio’s. I spent a few summers working my butt off as a bartender before getting my public school teaching job. It was run by a family that I love, and we were all a family. My bouncer’s daughter is my daughters best friend. I taught the nieces and nephews of my fellow bartenders, and my chef and waitress have kids and nieces who I also taught and have grown up with my kids.

The new owners have changed it drastically, and it’s now an upscale modern looking corporate type of of feel restaurant and bar. The boats that used to park there when i was bar tending were day boats and families. Now? There are multi-million dollar yachts surrounding it.

We walked by and played the “which yacht would you own” game. If every yacht owner would donate to metavivor, I bet we could fund three trials. But instead women and men in the arena are doing walks and have kids selling lemonade to save their lives as they breathe while treading water and watch the yachts float on by.

I pretend the yacht owners come out of their yachts, hear my story, and donate millions to research. That’s the game I play quietly in my head.

As we drove home, I thanked the kids for the summer memory. It felt like was had traveled to some far off place and we were only twenty five minutes or so away from home. We promised we would go back, as there are so many new restaurants and stores. I love the little restaurants, and want to eat at the main lucharitos one day. I love the owner, and he is one of the small business owners who walks the walk. Support the small businesses and help the local families when you head out east.

Today is another hot one, and I have to be careful about the heat. I’m trying to drink a lot of water to stay hydrated, and stay cool as much as I can.

Today I praying for the family of Nikki, and all of her friends.

I’m praying for Johanna, who has now had her 101st brain surgery in her 23 years of life. It’s has been hard and painful. Eileen, her mom, is sharing information and pictures and we are holding them all in our hearts.

I’m praying and doing my best to imagine my body is healed and healthy, and will be here helping me to live and thrive for many more years, and that the Chinese herbs and supplements and sea vegetable and mushroom smoothies and three mile walks will help my body stay stronger and that’s what will make me different than what’s happened to my friends, so it can send the cancer cells gently off into the night, scattered like the stars in the sky, never to form another tumor again.

I’m praying for my children to continue to thrive. Madison was talking to us about maybe becoming a screenwriter, and we looked at some colleges online while at dinner. All of our money is going to my life, and there is no college fund. I’m praying for them to all get scholarships so they can go wherever they want to be whatever they want.

May today be a day where we all move a bit slower and see a little more clearly how precious our lives are. Hold onto it with both hands, and make summer memories today. A walk on the beach, laying down on the grass and looking at clouds, read a good book, sing or dance.

Life is for living.

Live a good one today.

In Jesus’s name, amen.




Today we become a family of four again.

Morgan was nominated by her teacher this past year to attend a STEM Academy. It’s housed in different universities across the country, and this week it’s based out of St Johns University. She is going to work on four different lab sites with a mission to Mars as a focus. In robotics she will design a robot to go across the terrain of Mars. In medical she will learn how to do surgery and other medical procedures. In forensics she will learn how to test items. And in structure and engineering she will design buildings for the planet. There will be a NASA astronaut there as well, and she will be sleeping in the dorms until Friday. Morgan is super excited and wants to be an architect like her dad.

I guess that’s why we cherished our time yesterday even more, as it was the only day the five of us would be together a full twenty four hours in a three week period. And cherish our time together we did.

Salem is an amazing place to visit. Again, we walked along cobblestone streets by the water and thought what an opportunity our town of Riverhead is missing. We went back in time and visited several museums with re-enactments of witch trials.

It truly was something to see and hear about. For those who don’t know, it was a time when young girls were seen and not heard. Then, some girls began acting peculiar, a slave was blamed for telling stories, and then people began to get accused of being witches.

In trials, people would make up evidence and say they were being attacked by spirits. People were hung, crushed to death, imprisoned . If you were accused, you had to pay for your own jail cell, and the town would take possession of your land.

Anyone was fair game, and if someone didn’t like you, they could make up a story and then that was it. It finally stopped when the governors wife was accused of being a witch. One of the first young girls who started it all admitted she made it all up. The damage had already been done and lives were lost.

Rob and I talked to the kids about mass hysteria and mob mentality, and always telling the truth. Some people live and tell lies about others to this day to hurt them, and get away with it. I’m just glad we don’t have public hangings or stoning, as I am 100% positive I would be hung. I’m vocal, stand up for others, and despise those who lie, especially about my or my actions and words. I have also been attacked by some who claim that some of my healing modalities are the devils work.

When I was little I was fascinated by the witch trials. I’m so glad I live in this day and age. Well behaved women rarely make history.

But… we still have a long way to go.

We also did an escape room as a family, and Quinn was besides himself with excitement. Maddie and Morgan were funny and stayed back at times when we were afraid of jump scares. We solved the room with ten minutes to spare, and the man said he never had anyone solve it as fast as we did, without needed extra clues at the end. It was a blast, and I was glad Quinn got to experience it.

We decided to stay in Salem and leave this morning instead of getting home late and then driving Morgan to her STEM week. I’m so glad we stayed in this old in right off of the Main Street in Salem. The walls of the hallway have birds and butterflies on them.

We walked about twelve miles yesterday back and forth from museum to museum and shop to shop. There were many Harry Potter themed shops, and one in particular was amazing. The woman who ran a wand shop was named Rose, and man… she was amazing. She spoke to the kids about every type of wand the wand maker had carved, the wood he used, the shapes and their meanings, and how to use them. We’ve never been to universal in Orlando, but i bet you wouldn’t get the same care you get from Rose. Amazing.

There were tons of crystal shops, sage, herbs, spell books, witches costumes, t shirts, psychic workers in windows. We walked by the water and saw the oldest candy store in America.

What a day.

I’m up now preparing to say goodbye to Morgan today. Rob and I are so lucky with our kids. Madison let them all wear her navy shorts and green platoon shirts from the academy, and for once my kids all matched. They couldn’t stop hugging each other and holding hands.

I kept thinking how when i grew up we were called “Six Wix” for the six Wicklunds. I’ve dubbed us the “Fantastic Five”, because it feels fantastic when the five of us are together. It’s going to be along week again until I get my girl.

Madison continued to tell us stories about her Master Chief and her experiences with him. If you know her in real life, you’ve got to ask her about some of the stories. It’s hysterical. She also had an alligator mascot for the two weeks, and bought an alligator head to carry around to remind her of her chief and platoon. “Big Joe” was in quite a few family photos with us.

Today may we have safe travels. May Morgan begin a beautiful experience full of learning and new friends. May my cells continue to heal and the lotion work on the feet and hands to stop whatever is starting. And may I be with my fantastic five for decades to come.

In Jesus’s name, amen.



Our Honor Cadet

What a day.

We got up, at breakfast, started chemo cycle two, then took Morgan and Quinn on a memory tour. Rob drove them all around where he went to college. He showed them his house he rented, the bakery he loves so much where you can get a huge bag of Portuguese rolls and three big pastries for $5, and then we went to his campus.

Roger Williams University is beautiful, and he showed us his dorms and the studio where he started to learn architecture. We went to the library and wouldn’t you know, his published thesis is still there. He did a whole book on downtown Riverhead. It’s beautiful. He has a visitors center, every shop downtown has a storefront facing the river, and sketches of the buildings. It’s amazing, and sad that the town still can’t get out of its own way to revitalize downtown. They just canceled a Friday night concert series, and one woman is trying to do a go fund me to get it going. It’s always the volunteers who walk the walk. They should look at robs thesis and get it going. Walking around Newport and Salem makes me sad that we have such amazing opportunity in Riverhead and all I see are huge buildings going up for “artists” yet cancel events for artists. We’ve got the riverfront. Let’s make Riverhead a destination spot like Newport.

Then we went to the naval academy. It was hot!! Thank God my dad had umbrellas, and we sat under the shade. A friend of Madison’s who went to the camp last year was there, and she said she had gotten some texts from Madison’s CO that she was one of the top cadets and was crushing every task. She said Maddie blew away every other cadet with running and sit ups and push-ups, and did amazing with sailing. Then Madison’s Riverhead NJROTC Captain walked over and he couldn’t contain his excitement. He said every single teacher knew who Maddie was and she stood out from everyone. It was nice to have my mom and dad hear him and see his pure glee. He is an amazing man.

People bash Riverhead High all the time. Those people aren’t taking advantage of all it has to offer. We offer free music lessons through our music department. Amazing musical and theatric productions. College level courses. Madisons coach for track is one of the most dedicated coaches I’ve ever met, and focus on making everyone better, not just faster. The NJROTC program is outstanding. The things it teaches these kids and doors it opens is an experience I can’t believe more parents don’t push their kids to take. It all starts in kindergarten, and if you put in the effort then, you reap the rewards later. Take my word for it.

Then the ceremony began, and the cadets took my breath away. These high school students looked like true soldiers, precise, serious and strong. We saw Maddie right away at the end of her platoon. There were speeches, and then they announced awards.

Madison had been upset when she heard she was in the green platoon, as the blue platoon had a streak of five years in a row winning top platoon. I told madison on the drive up that’s why she was put in the green, because she would push them to the top.

It was announced her green platoon won top platoon, and we all cheered. She had a former Marine corps drill instructor who loves to have the cadets “eat salad”, which means do push ups. It was remarked in the speeches that the green platoon was fierce and strong. She did four mile runs, did PT at four in the morning, and told us she is the strongest she has ever been.

Then they announced awards for physical training, sailing, academics, inspection, orienteering, attitude. Madison’s name wasn’t called once. We were wondering if her captain had said she did so great to make us feel better because he knew we had been so worried.

Then, they announced the top cadet from each platoon, and Madison’s name was announced. They said she had the top score in every every area. I was so proud my heart almost burst out of my chest. Seeing her stride purposefully across the big naval field and be congratulated by every officer in charge was a moment I’ll always remember.

Then they did the big march around the field, did their cheer, and were dismissed.

That’s when all the parents stormed the field for hugs. I saw boys and girls run to their moms and dads for hugs as we made our way to madison and it was a sight to see all the reunions on the field. Morgan and Quinn ran to Maddie first and she was so happy. Hugging her was amazing. We met the marine corps drill instructor and instead of kicking his ass like I dreamed of all week long after Madison’s texts of him breaking her down, I shook his hand and thanked him. Madison told me she is so glad she went, and she feels her social skills and confidence have grown tremendously. The Marine Corps Drill Instructor had a huge part in that.

We took lots of pictures then went to lunch. Madison had us all cracking up at the stories from her two weeks of sailing, living in the navy Barack’s, and her instructor. Rob and I said he sounded like the Full Metal Jacket guy, and Maddie said the actual cadets in the academy couldn’t believe what he was having her platoon do. They rose up to his challenge every time. Madison said he made everyone cry, the boys and the girls, she cried three times, but in the end she loved him. He put them on a diet plan and she ate more vegetables than she did in her whole life. When she was on leave last Saturday, they gave the cadets each $25. She spent it on a hat for him for his birthday, and in the last night arranged for every cadet to sign a shirt and a hat for him, as well as the cadet aides and the cadet moms. She told us how she sailed boats, and her terminology blew me away. She said they all slept with their dorm room doors open and they all had to do an hour night watch each night. Her marine corps instructor was extremely protective and yelled at any other platoon that tried to mess with them. His language was salty to say the least, and hearing Madison say some of his terms cracked us up.

We told her she passed all of her AP exams and even got a five on her AP world History. She was excited and happy to know how well she did.

Madison told us she has been asked to go back next year as a Cadet Aide. It’s a highly respected nomination and Madison’s commanding officer was there this year. I’m hoping camp Kesem is a different week, because madison would hate to have to choose.

We got back a different girl than we dropped off…stronger, confident, funny, and feeling more social. She doesn’t have Snapchat, and said that’s how everyone plans on staying in touch. I told her she could get it if she wanted, but she said no. She gave everyone her cell and feels that’s enough. As we walked out of graduation, Madison for hugs from a lot of the cadets, boys and girls, and each one told us how amazing she is.

As we walked through Newport, she was stopped several times by young and old and thanked for her service. She said she didn’t know how to respond so just smiled and said thank you.

I’m so proud of her.

We drove up to Salem and on our way I was thanking God for this life. Then Madison said, “Look, a rainbow!”

Thank you, God.

We ate a late dinner, Quinn swam in the pool, and we went to bed. Madison and Quinn slept together, Morgan has a makeshift cot, and rob and I are in a tiny bed. We felt so full and blessed to have us all together again, of only

For a day.

Tomorrow Morgan gets dropped off for a weeklong STEM Academy at St Johns University that her teachers nominated her for this year. She is just as bright and driven as Madison.

Today we will soak in being together as a family. We will visit witch and pirate museums and hold hands and just be together. I said to rob that soon Madison will be going away to college, and family trips will be hard. We need to do all we can to make sure we make memories now. We may not have the money anymore for big trips, but “daycations” should become a priority.

Today I am thankful that I didnt have side effects other than extreme fatigue, that my

Mom and dad were able to see our girl walk across that field for her honor cadet award, and that we are all together again.

May I continue to have these blessings for many decades to come.

In Jesus’s name, amen.