Marilyn

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"I would encourage everyone to try to enjoy every single day."

I was first diagnosed with Breast Cancer in 1994. It was DCIS. After a lumpectomy, I was advised to have a mastectomy. I had reconstructive surgery at the same time. I was put on Tamoxifen for 5 years. In 1998, I was diagnosed with invasive breast cancer on my other breast. Once again I had a mastectomy and reconstructive surgery. That was followed by 6 months of chemo, and I was prescribed Femara for 5 years. In the last months of 2013 I had a chest x-Ray and a PET scan and, as a result, I had surgery to remove a wedge. It seemed to the doctor at the time to be lung cancer. Unexpectedly, the pathology showed it to be consistent with breast cancer. I had six months of chemo. Since then, I have been on a program of infusions of Herceptin and Perjeta every three weeks, and I take an Exemestane in pill form, daily. So here I am living with Stage IV Metastatic Breast Cancer.

I was in shock at first, but feel fine except for some side effects. It’s nothing I can’t handle, to date.

My tri-weekly visit to the Cancer Center has just become part of my routine. I feel as though I am still living my life pretty much the same as ever. I have eight grandchildren who give me tremendous joy and I intend to stay around for a long time to come (God willing).

I have eight grandchildren who give me tremendous joy and I intend to stay around for a long time to come (God willing).

I am not going to pretend that I don’t have my times of side effects driving me crazy and mood swings making me feel crazy. Still, I believe for the most part that it could always be a lot worse and everyone in life has some cross to bear.

I would encourage everyone to try to enjoy every single day. Life is so precious, so do not waste too much time  feeling sorry for yourself.