I have been putting off posting this, as I wanted to wait until my sister and her family had spread the word. My sister Jeanne, a two time cancer survivor, relapsed in stage 2. She has NLPHL–the same kind that I have, and the same kind she has had twice now.
The cancer is in her lymph nodes under her armpits and in her groin, and luckily have not spread to her internal organs. After speaking with her oncologist, as well as a radiologist, they believe that chemotherapy in some form is the way to go, as opposed to radiation. (She has had a life time amount of radiation already, and the risks of more radiation to her chest area giving her breast cancer on top of all of this are far too great). The type and amount of chemotherapy she will receive is up in the air as of right now, as she has already had a stem cell transplant. They do know however, that they will start her on Rituximab on August 28th, which is the drug that my oncologist believed really helped my progress. It was also the only drug that I had which I tolerated OK, so hopefully it will be the same for her.
So if you all could just keep my sister in your prayers, that would be great. Truthfully I would much rather go through chemo a second time, than to watch her go through it a third, but that being said, we all know she will beat it, as she has done so in the past. It’s a very good thing that they caught it early, in stage 2, and I’m hoping she won’t feel so crappy while undergoing treatment. If you could also keep my parents in your prayers, I’m sure they sure could use a few. I really couldn’t imagine what it must be like to have your only 2 children both have cancer–let alone at the same time. That’s pretty overwhelming if you ask me.
Oh ya…and if you’re wondering how her kids are taking it….pretty good. They all sat down for dinner, and they asked if they could watch TV while they were eating. Jeanne said no, as she had something very important to talk to them about. Annoyed, they waited, and Jeanne told them that she had cancer. Marky replied, “Is that it? Can I turn on the TV now?” So, I think they are ok. One of the good things is that they will be in school full time when Jeanne starts, and hopefully the worst they will see is that she’ll lose her hair like me. They were just newborns the last time Jeanne went through this whole process, so they certainly don’t remember it. Which is a good thing. As I always say….could be worse. Could be dead 🙂
I realize now, more so than ever, how important it is to change my lifestyle. Diet and exercise is so important, and living a vegan lifestyle has been proven to help decrease tumor growth. I mean my sister has had cancer three times now. I ended up with the same kind of cancer. Clearly in our family, this shit isn’t going away any time soon–at least not for good anyways. There are few things that I am able to control. I have put my entire life in the hands of someone else this entire time, just praying that they come up with a treatment plan for me that actually works. —Its like my fear of flying. People always say I have this super irrational fear of airplanes, and that many more people die in car crashes every year than in planes. And here is my take: When I’m on an airplane, I’m not in control. I have to completely trust someone else with my life. But when I’m in a car, I have some form of control at least. My hands on the steering wheel, on the gas pedal, and my knowledge of the road. And so the way I figure it is this–if there is anything that I can have control over to help me live, I’m going to do it. If I die, I certainly don’t want it to be for lack of trying to survive.
I have already taken the plane ride, and now it’s my turn to drive.