Monday, July 27, 2009

That's All Folks!

Monday, July 27, 2009

That's right, my friends...I am 100% done with chemo. I have, as of today, completed 8 of 8 chemo treatments and my doctor thinks very successfully so.

I must say, it feels odd to celebrate this moment when it's only the completion of the second step of this process--assuming that the first step was the road to diagnosis and my treatment plan. I know I still have surgery and radiation to get through, but this was the longest and most draining portion of the whole process so I can't help but be a bit elated.

At the same time that my giddiness has overtaken me, there are somber undertones to my mood. All along the way, I thought that the fear I was experiencing--fear of this unknown process--was about as intense as it was going to get. Now, as I near the end, and make my surgical decisions, it's the fear of making the wrong decision and having to live this experience all over again that literally keeps me awake at night.

As I stand in these shoes that so many women have walked their journey in before me, I stand fearful. I now completely understand why women make the decision to do a bilateral mastectomy whether the statistical advantage supports their decision or not. I can see how it would be worth it for the peace of mind and a life lived without daily fear--and of course, there is the resulting tummy tuck when they do the reconstruction since they take the tissue from your abdomen! :) I suppose it has its advantages, but it also means that you undergo two very serious surgeries--the bilateral mastectomy and the reconstruction. Even with a single mastectomy, it's the same story--two serious surgeries.

What I'm essentially sharing with you is my realization that this will be a lifelong struggle to not live in constant fear of experiencing this again. "Five month journey" naive of me. Five (a little more really) months of treatment, yes, but the journey has no end.

Don't get me wrong, I'm thrilled to be done with chemo and to have my Picc line out--they pulled it out right there in the chair when I was done--but let's just say that I feel as if I'm jinxing myself if I celebrate this victory TOO much. That said, I plan to celebrate a little! My dear friend, Kristen, surprised me with balloons, cookie cake, and a necklace. Joe, Kristen, and I had a little party amongst ourselves and Joe and my mom took me out to dinner afterwards to celebrate as well.

Have no fear! I will relish the happy moment and I will hope and pray that my good fortune continues. It is much to ask, but I hope that all of you will do the same. I know when it appears that the eminent danger has passed, it is easy to relax away, but I continue to need your prayers and positive thoughts. I hope I have them! Each of you are absolutely in mine! The kindness all of you have shown is overwhelming and I will never for a moment forget that it is all of you who are carrying me through this.

My love and respect to each of you!


  1. Congratulations my love. Wish I could have been there. Dear old Dad.

  2. Revelation 1:17 (NASB95)
    And He placed His right hand on me, saying, "Do not be afraid; I am the first and the last"
    Celebrate every small victory on the journey.
    Chuck Andrews

  3. Strength and courage are easiest to find when there is nothing to fear, but those who can remain strong when facing huge obstacles and fears, like you and my sister, are my absolute heroes. You may be standing fearful, but you are still standing!
    There is nothing you can't do!
    Miss and love you!

  4. I'm glad you're done with the chemo part. You are right that you'll probably never really be mentally worry free from cancer, but I think that you'll continue to draw strength from the experience rather than be worn down by it. You are a strong person, and getting stronger every step you take. :)