Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Has a bullet with your name on it

With a bang, bang, bang & down you go.
It's just a job I do!

Because the harder you run the harder you fall,
I'm coming down hard on you, hard on you - & I know my aim is true! 

Because I got a name, and I got a number, I gotta line on you! 

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Kentucky Oaks Survivor Walk 2015

***PLEASE CONTACT THE KENTUCKY DERBY FESTIVALS EXECS***
IF YOU KNOW OF ANYONE, PLEASE CONTACT THEM TO SEE IF THEY CAN HELP US!!


I have a wish...I wish the Kentucky Derby/Oaks-Churchill Downs Executives would add Pancreatic Cancer Survivors to the survivor walk on Oaks Day.
 
They added Ovarian Cancer Survivors and I applaud that! Yet the fact is, Pancreatic Cancer kills more Moms, sisters, daughters, aunts, grandmothers & friends than Ovarian Cancer. 
It is rapidly becoming the #2 cancer killer in the US & will surpass the deaths of breast cancer within the next 2 years. 

You may ask, "Why should they recognize PC? It's not "female" related, like Ovarian & Breast Cancer?" Oh, but it is! You hear about BRCA 1&2 about breast cancer & ovarian cancer, correct? Well, both of those genetic mutations are also related to pancreatic cancer. Along with BRCA1&2, there are 11 other genetic mutations that have been linked to breast, ovarian AND pancreatic cancer! 

We can change this. If you would, could you contact Churchill Downs/Derby Festival Executives and ask them to add Pancreatic Cancer survivors? It would go far in helping raise awareness & help educate women that BRCA1&2 are not ONLY about breast cancer and ovarian cancer, but also increases their risk of the most lethal cancer there is, Pancreatic Cancer. 

http://www.kentuckyderby.com/survivors

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Ash Wednesday & Lent...

What better day to start "anew".

"For many people, the big feast of the year is Christmas, but for Christians, the truly great feast is Easter. Without Easter, without the Resurrection, we would not have the gift of salvation. Jesus had to rise from the dead or else he would have just been another failed Messiah and his birth would be a forgotten footnote of history."~Father Robert Barron

I have believed in this for as long as I can remember. It's EASTER we should celebrate from the highest mountain top! Sadly, most Christians go through the motions. I can say, "I've been there." Yet, get a life altering diagnosis and your perspective is laser focused. It's not that I never believed in the Messiah. I always have. I have had my moments of doubt, but then have come to realize that He is the Son of God & because of Him, I am forgiven. Which brings me to the point of my blog, or reblogging this Ash Wednesday, the beginning of Lent.

It's about starting anew. Fresh new start & looking to the REASON of our salvation: forgiveness.
I'm human. I struggle with forgiveness. Today started with, "Not only will I give up a vice. I will work on my forgiveness. Not only of others, but for myself, as well."

Well, I have already failed miserably!! I'm human! I suppose some people come with a long history & I can't forgive them because I see no remorse or acknowledgement from them that they even understand how SELFISH/NARCISSISTIC they are. I know many of you will say, "The Bible says to forgive anyway." My response, "I'm human."

At this point in my life I have decided: IF you are a TAKER/NARCISSISTIC/SELFISH BITCH, I do NOT need you in my life. I CHOOSE to only allow in those who are givers, TRUE CHRISTIANS or Christ-like in their word & actions. Those of any religious belief that "walk the walk, not talk the talk."

You may go to church weekly. You may "minister" to others. Yet, your actions speak volumes to your character & Christianity.

I'll pray for you in this Ash Wednesday, but I will no longer allow you in my life to disappoint & hurt me.

My life is too short for people like you.

Now, back to working on my Lenten sacrifice & forgiveness.

Saturday, January 10, 2015

End of life thoughts...

For those of you that have made your funeral/memorial service arrangements, did you make special provisions to make sure there were certain people who would NOT be welcome at your memorial?

I mean, if they choose NOT to be there for you while you're living, WHY would you want them to be at your memorial service? I know I don't want them there.

Just curious of what others thought...

Love you more <3

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

November! My birthday month & Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month

Here we are again! Fortunately, I'm here to see another birthday! Who would have thought, when I was diagnosed, I would see 50!?!?!? Much less, 51. Not sure how many I'll get to since I now have a recurrence. The good news is: my cancer is stable & has been since February. However, if you know how aggressive this cancer is, it could all change on a dime.

For the month of November, I'm going to be BRUTALLY honest about the type of pancreatic cancer I was diagnosed with & the other pancreatic cancer, as well as other cancers. We'll take a look at survival rates, awareness, drugs from "Big Pharma" and the amount of research funds invested into pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma vs other cancers. I believe you'll be shocked.

Also, I'm going to share with you the projected growth of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma over the next 5 years. It may frighten you, but it should frighten you! It is the ONLY major cancer that is on the rise & is projected to become the #2 cancer killer in the USA, surpassing BOTH Colon AND Breast Cancer. Women, Moms, Aunts, Sisters, Grandmothers & friends need to be VERY afraid! It is coming upon a time when women will be DYING from Pancreatic Cancer rather than Breast Cancer...AND THERE IS NO EARLY DETECTION TEST! The majority of patients are diagnosed at Stage IV. The median survival time is ONLY 5 months. Who will it be? You? Your Mom? Your Sister? Your best friend? Your favorite Aunt? It's coming, but I seem to be in a small group of people who is taking this seriously. Why aren't you?

So when your GYN talks to you about BRCA 1 & 2, keep in mind, IF you have a mutation to these genes, you ARE AT GREATER RISK FOR PANCREATIC CANCER. I'll dive into this in a future blog.

First, I want to distinguish between the 2 primary types of Pancreatic Cancer. They are: Pancreatic Ductal Adenocarcinoma. It is very aggressive & accounts for 95% of all cases and is considered the "deadliest" cancer. This is what Patrick Swayze died from. The other type of Pancreatic Cancer is: Pancreatic Neuroendocrine Tumors. These tumors are generally less aggressive & slower growing. This is the type of Pancreatic Cancer-pNETs, that Steve Jobs died from.

Now I'm going to show you the 5 year survival rates for BOTH of the pancreatic cancers, as well as the 5 year survival for the other top cancer killers in the US. All of which are on the decline, except for Pancreatic Cancer.

For Pancreatic Ductal Adenocarcinoma: (#4 Cancer Killer and on the rise.Projected to be
                                            the #2 Cancer Killer by 2015)

Stage IA: 14%
Stage IB: 12%
Stage IIA: 7%
Stage IIB: 5%
Stage III:   3%
Stage IV:   1%
Overall:     6%

For Pancreatic Neuroendocrine Tumors:

Stage I:   61%
Stage II:  52%
Stage III: 41%
Stage IV: 16%
Overall:  42%

NIH funding for Pancreatic Cancer research for FY2013: $102 Million

For Lung Cancer: (#1 Cancer and on the decline)

Stage IA:  49%
Stage IB:  45%
Stage IIA: 30%
Stage IIB: 31%
Stage IIIA: 14%
Stage IIIB:  5%
Stage IV:    1%
Overall:    16%

NIH funding for Lung Cancer research for FY2013: $286 Million 

For Colon Cancer: (#2 Cancer and on the decline)

Stage I:      74%
Stage IIA:  67%
Stage IIB:  59%
Stage IIC:  37%
Stage IIIA: 73%*
Stage IIIB:  46%*
Stage IIIC:  28%
Stage IV:       6%
Overall:       65%
*In this study, survival was better for some stage III cancers than for some stage II cancers. The reasons for this are not clear.

For Rectal Cancer: 

Stage I:     74%
Stage IIA:  65%
Stage IIB:  52%
Stage IIC:  32%
Stage IIIA: 74%*
Stage IIIB: 45%*
Stage IIIC: 33%
Stage IV:     6%
Overall:      62%
*In this study, survival was better for some stage III cancers than some stage II cancers.
The reasons for this are not clear.

NIH Funding for colon/rectum cancer research FY2013: $238 Million

For Breast Cancer: (Currently #3 Cancer, on the decline and equal in deaths to Pancreatic                
                           Cancer)

Stage 0:  100%
Stage I:   100%
Stage II:    93%
Stage III:   72%
Stage IV:   22%
Overall:     89%

NIH Funding for Breast Cancer for FY2013: $559 Million

For Prostate Cancer: (Currently #5 Cancer and on the decline in deaths)

Stage I:  100%
Stage IIA: 99%
Stage IIB: 99%
Stage III: 99%
Stage IV: 29%
Overall 5 year survival: 100%
Overall 10 year survival: 99%
Overall 15 year survival: 94%

NIH Funding for Prostate Cancer for FY2013: $256 Million

So, based on these numbers, I believe we can DEMAND Senators Mitch McConnel & Rand Paul to do away with NIH funding for Prostate Cancer and put that money toward the cancers that are KILLERS: Pancreatic & Lung Cancer! 



Don't get me wrong! All cancer is bad, but there are definitely ones that are much more deadly than others! Isn't it time to reallocate the funds to the cancers that really need it and have not had survival statistics improve in over 40 years? Hell, that was when you had to use a telephone booth with a DIME!! 
I'M MAD AS HELL AND I'M NOT TAKING IT ANYMORE!!! I'M TIRED OF SEEING MOM AFTER MOM AFTER MOM LOSE THE BATTLE WITH PANCREATIC CANCER! 
Everyone in this country should be very afraid and demanding that more money go to Pancreatic Cancer. Who knows, it may be your Mom, sister, wife, Aunt or cousin that is next. It is growing that fast! 



Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Adenocarcinoma

You may be asking yourself, "Adenocarcinoma? What's that?" Well, my friend, THAT is the TYPE of pancreatic cancer that I have. Yes, there is more than one. I just happened to be diagnosed with the one that 95% of patients are diagnosed with. The one that is considered the most "lethal" of all cancers. So, don't be surprised if after you tell me, "I know someone who had pancreatic cancer and they're still alive after ________ blank number of years! You can beat this, too!!" I then ask you, "Did they have adenocarcinoma or Neuroendocrine?" There IS a difference!! Patrick Swayze had adenocarcinoma. Steve Jobs had neuroendocrine. One is rapidly growing (adenocarcinoma) & usually deadly within a year and one is slow growing (neuroendocrine) and, unless you're diagnosed at stage 4, usually has better outcomes than adenocarcinoma.

Adenocarcinoma, stage 2B...that is MY diagnosis. I am now stage 2B recurrent adenocarcinoma. I am NOT stage 4 and NEVER will be because I was not initially diagnosed with stage 4.
Another lesson in cancer I have learned. You ARE what your initial diagnosis is. Now IF my cancer had metastasized, I would be: Stage 2B with metastasis to (fill in the blank to whatever organ it has spread). Now you know WHY I will never be stage 4.

I did receive good news today. You see, with adenocarcinoma, there is a tumor marker they measure in the blood. It's called CA19-9. Normal range is 0-37. Pre-Whipple, I was 270. Post-op I was down to 15!! Sadly, with the recurrence of the cancer in my lymph node, it rose to 632!! Fortunately, going to a top notch cancer center & having one of the best medical oncologists in the country for pancreatic cancer, I am responding to the chemo in the clinical trial. Not that it has been a cake walk. It has not. Folfox is rough! GI symptoms and neuropathy in my hands & feet?!?! No bueno!! But, I am still here and am improving. How do I know? That crazy CA19-9 and my CT scans! My latest CA19-9 is down to 93!! So, I'm getting closer to 37!! Hopefully, within the next few months, they will declare me NED (No Evidence of Disease) and I will be off of chemo!!

Next blog...cyber stalkers and what you can do when dealing with a psychopath that has been released from jail.

Until then...much love to all!!