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Stage III Cancer Survivors ...Five + Years and Out.

A place to post hope for those who are stage 3. Please posts your stories of HOPE for those just starting this journey.



  • Unknown
    edited December 2012

    This year is my NINE year anniversary for being diagnosed with stage 3B Inflammatory breast cancer, triple negative.

    When I was diagnosed the first thing I did was search the internet and all the statistics were grim. I honestly never believed I would be here today. I am living proof that there is ALWAYS HOPE.

    My life has been forever changed but it is still a good life. I will never be a 'cancer is a gift' person. Cancer sucks! My life is good in spite of cancer and by God's grace.

    I don't come to the boards much anymore because life is so busy now. God has blessed me and opened more doors than I could ever believe but I do come on my anniversary in hopes that my story can provide hope to other IBC'ers or stage 3 women/men who are just starting. Don't give up. Don't despair.

    There is ALWAYS HOPE and life can be good again.

    Posts from Original Thread:

    March 13, 2010

    I am a triple negative Inflammatory Breast Cancer (IBC) survivor of 6 1/2 years now.  My last scans in November show that my favorite dance partner, NED, continues to keep me dancing.  When given the diagnosis of IBC those many years ago and reading the grim stats, I honestly never thought I would be here today.  That is the meaning of my screen name.  For those of you just starting and wondering if you will make it...there is ALWAYS HOPE.

    While my life has been forever altered by this disease, I can honestly say it is still a good life.  God's grace is sufficient.  Many times you hear people say 'when God takes something away, He always gives something better in its place.'  I always used to smile and nod but it really never hit home until this last year.  The last few months, God has opened doors for me that I never would have thought possible.

    Don't get me wrong.  I'm not one of those 'cancer is a gift or a blessing' types.  Cancer sucks big pickles and I will NEVER consider it a gift.  My Life is good IN SPITE of cancer and because of God's grace.

    November 24, 2010

    Hi everyone

    I just wanted to drop in and let you know that I celebrated 7 years from diagnosis this week and I'm still NED (no evidence of disease).  So for all you stage 3, triple negs, and Inflammatory bc ladies, just remember that there is ALWAYS HOPE!

    Life is good.  God is great and worthy to be praised.

    November 9, 2011

    EIGHT YEARS!!!  Woohoo!  This is my anniversary month for being diagnosed  with triple neg Inflammatory BC and I am celebrating 8 years NED.  I just had my yearly followup with my breast surgeon.  There is ALWAYS HOPE!

    November 17, 2012

    Wow, has it really been another year already!  Time is moving so fast.  But that's what happens when life is good and fun abounds.  This week is my NINE year anniversary from diagnosis with stage 3b Inflammatory BC, triple neg.

    There is ALWAYS HOPE.  Trust in the Lord and HE will make your path sweet and life worth living.  Life is an adventure, enjoy the journey.

  • Karina
    Karina Member Posts: 76
    edited December 2012

    AlwaysHope, thank you so much for starting this thread!! And your story surely provides lots of hope!!! I am only two years and a bit more as a survivor, but I do pray and hope for many years... Please long term survivors tell us your stories.

    Love and peace to all my stage 3-ers.

  • Pure
    Pure Member Posts: 18
    edited December 2012

    My mom is stage 1 but is 24 years out. I am stage 3 and 3 years out. I wanted to share with you the following

    I have a friend who is stage 3c and is 8 years out and doing great. I have another friend who is 9 years out had a local reoccurence and is now 22 years out.

  • hopeforlife
    hopeforlife Member Posts: 8
    edited December 2012

    My mom is one year out, her friend had Stage 3 TP 20+ node IDC and she is 13 years out!!!

    I met a woman in clinic who had node+ BC and is 34 Years out!!! She said she forgot how many positive nodes she had since it has been that long.

  • oaktownmom
    oaktownmom Member Posts: 37
    edited December 2012

    I have a friend who was stage 3c and is 15 years out. She was diagnosed in her twenties, went on to have two healthy kids, and is doing great!

  • LindaLou53
    LindaLou53 Member Posts: 60
    edited December 2012

    AlwaysHope, Thanks for starting this new thread.  I was holding out hope that the Mods/IT would decide to save the original thread and bring back the posts of so many others.  Maybe that is still possible, but we can certainly continue to share our stories here and hopefully, this new thread will provide the same support and encouragement as the original.

    Instructions for Retrieving your Old Posts from the Original Stage 3 Five Years+ Out-Check In ! Thread:

    1. For any ladies who had made posts to the original thread, you can go to your Dashboard
    2. then to your Recent Posts. 
    3. Click on View All where you can find every post you ever made on the forums since Jan 2007. 
    4. If you feel any of your posts made to the original thread would still be of value to new readers,
    5. just click on the EDIT button next to that post in your list of posts,
    6. then Copy/Paste the contents into this new thread.

    Of course, any of the old posts pasted here will no longer be in proper sequence and might refer to an original post that is no longer present, but perhaps the general content, spirit of support and encouragement they contain will still be of some help to new readers.  For anyone, who chooses to do this, it might be helpful if you mention that it is an older post from the original thread and add the date of the original post.

    I will copy/paste some of my original posts in a following post here as an example.

  • LindaLou53
    LindaLou53 Member Posts: 60
    edited December 2012

    Here are some of my original posts from the now deleted thread:

    Originally posted:  May 29, 2010 01:42 AM
    CONGRATS Linda K on your 5 year celebration!! So good to hear you are still kicking A**!  You are so right that those of us Stage 3rs with a few years under our belt are keeping very busy with LIFE and not giving the big C any more time than we absolutely have to!  I am following right behind you Linda. July will be 10 years from my Stage 2 dx and in just 6 more months I will celebrate 5 years out from that nasty Stage 3C with 23 positive nodes and still NED!
    As hard as it may seem for you ladies just starting the journey, there will come a day when you realize that you no longer think about cancer every day and that you really CAN get back to living a wonderful life!
    Hang in there ladies!

    Originally posted:  Jun 13, 2011 02:46 PM
    Hi orlandpark!  Congrats on finishing up chemo!  I get a little scared before my CT scans too...which I think is pretty typical for all of us.  I also really understand worrying about the numbers.  BUT I want to give you a little encouragement that there are LOTS of us positive node ladies here who are still doing well and dancing with NED many years later!
    This July I will celebrate 11 years NED from my first BC dx of IDC with micromets to 2 nodes. This November will be my 6 year anniversary of my second BC dx (unrelated to the first) of Stage 3C ILC with 23/23 nodes all positive.  I get my annual CT scan next month so always start thinking about the "what ifs" around that time, but have every reason to believe NED is still going to hang around!
    I'll be sending good thoughts your way for your scans tomorrow and hope you find radiation as easy as I did.  You are beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel and have all kinds of good things to look forward to!  Hang in are doing great!

    Originally posted: Dec 5, 2012 02:02 PM
    Exactly 7 years ago today I had a bilateral mastectomy with total axillary dissection for my Stage 3C ILC with 23/23 positive nodes.  As of my last scan in June 2012 I remain NED and am doing great!  I chose a very aggressive treatment plan and am glad I did.  My remaining side effects are well managed Lymphedema along with some peripheral neuropathy in my feet, but I am otherwise in good physical shape.  I still take Aromasin every day and will continue to do so indefinitely.  I just started Metformin this year and hope to hear some preliminary trial results in 2013 to help me decide if I will stay on it.
    Other than getting older (which is a good thing....YES!) I feel like my life is very full, rewarding, and keeping me busy with all kinds of non-cancer related activities!  I will always have that small voice in the back of my head that says "what if?" and the knowledge that Life gives guarantees to no one. I still am so grateful to be here to enjoy my family, friends and life for each and every day I am given.
    I hope to encourage those newly diagnosed, who are just now facing the fear about their treatment and future.  Know that you will always have a wealth of support here from so many women who really do understand what you are going through. We all know the despair and confusion that can come with a diagnosis, but many of us can also be a testimony to the fact that you CAN get through this!
    Best Wishes and Good Health to All!
    P.S. I am also now 12.5 years out from the Stage 2A IDC dx I had in 2000!

  • Bugs
    Bugs Member Posts: 21
    edited December 2012

    I just heard back from the mods and they said that bringing the old thread back is not possible.  I won't go in to how very angry this makes me as some of the members that posted there have moved on and do not come to bco often at all.  Such a shame that something so important is destroyed forever because somebody  didn't think of the ramifications.

    Thanks LindaLou for your directions.  I am going to go see if I can find my posts and I hope many more people do!

  • Bugs
    Bugs Member Posts: 21
    edited December 2012

    I found 2 posts of mine that I am putting in here.

    Tomorrow marks 5 years since I have been diag … Jan 31, 2011 10:20 PM

    It's been 5 years since I have been diagnosed. My tumor was 8.5cm and I had 3 positive nodes. I remember coming here in such a panic after my pathology report came back. I was freaking out. My son was 8 years old and all I could think about was that he was soon to lose his Mom.
    So many of you came to reassure me that it was going to be OK. Kimf, Sherri, Hattie, Janis(Fitz), Wildflowers, Linda, Karen...and so many more. You told me to "breathe" and "take one step at a time". You told me your story and that yes, it sucked...but chemo is do-able. Some have moved on from bco and others still come back to help the newbies. I have met so many "sistah"s that I'll never feel alone.
    I am going to celebrate by having an ordinary day. I'm going to hug my 13 year old before he heads off to school, go to work and then after work I'm off to school. A friend of mine is taking me to lunch and buying me a chocolate malt Tongue out

    I am looking to the future and planning ahead. I have my bad "cancer" days...but most of them are good days.

    In topic 6 years today :)

    Six years, ladies! Had a wonderful day..some … Feb 1, 2012 06:33 PM

    Six years, ladies!  Had a wonderful day..some of the ladies from work took me out for lunch, came home to flowers from my Mom, and now heading over to a fellow BC sistah's house for a beer.

    Love you all!


  • Unknown
    edited December 2012

    If you build it, they will come....!  :)

  • Rachel1
    Rachel1 Member Posts: 80
    edited December 2012

    5 year's out from stage 3 Her2 pos 35 pos nodes

    I thought i needed to post hear for anyone new to this site. There is so much hope for us! My tumor was only 1 cm and when they did my axillary dissection, they found all 35 nodes positive! I'm er/pr negative. I did A/C then 12 weekly Taxols followed by one year of Herceptin. I begged my onc. for another year of Herceptin and they all said NO. I was so dissappointed but looking back, they were right! I also did a HER2 vaccine trial at Seattle WA at the Tumor Vaccine Group. My dr's told me I was not going to make it. I was 39 with 3 small children. I was forced into thinking about what I was going to wear in my coffin, and I hated that! Now looking back I know i was lucky to be dx when Herceptin was available. I took it in a trial and that was my only hope. I'm a nurse and I knew what my chances were. I just gave up for 2 years. I looked for anything I could do, like the vaccine trial, but I didn't think I would make it. Then after about 2 years, I kept waking up thinking, wow, my cancer has not come back yet. They said it would. Maybe....just maybe it won't! I don't think it really sunk in until the results of the Herceptin trial were coming out. There was ALOT of other women thinking the same thing...that their cancer was going to come back, and it DIDNT! Anyone newly dx reading this, I want you to know, you are NOT alone. You have alot of us on this site that are ALOT of years out with a bad prognosis. YOU CAN be that one like us....5...10 years out NED!!!! Come to this site when down. Come to this site when you need encouragement. Come to this site to see that God has given us another chance!


    Dx.2003 Stage 3b 35 pos nodes

    Dx August 2003 Stage 3B with 35/35 nodes IDC age 39
    A/C x4 Taxol x12
    35 radiation tx
    1Year Herceptin in trial
    HER2 vaccine trial Seattle
    3 months Tykerb off label
    This is taken from another board that I follow. I took off the name of the person, though I know she'd love to share.

  • hopefour
    hopefour Member Posts: 104
    edited December 2012

    This thread is our very own stage lll Christmas Miracle....thank you to all who are rebuilding this very special thread as a gift of HOPE for all and all to come. If you are coming here for the first time or are newly dx please know that wonderful woman rebuilt this thread for YOU...for you to be encouraged, find hope, to ease the loneliness of the battle, to know you have BC sisters that care about you and want you too to be a survivor!!

  • maryannecb
    maryannecb Member Posts: 74
    edited December 2012

    Wow...I feel sad that SherryG is gone. She was a very positive upbeat poster who offered a lot of sound advice and inspiration.

    She was here on ths board when i got here 7 years ago and a steady poster since.

    I will post my happy story to this thread when I get a chance. Too busy living life to the max

  • diana50
    diana50 Member Posts: 253
    edited December 2012

    I posted here before one met to spine. I was 10 and half years out before tumor marker doubled. I am convinced that I will be ok and get back into remission. Don't give up. Bumps along the road. You are strong. You can get through this. My friend is 12 years out stage III It is not a death sentence and neither is stage 4. Do the treatments and one day at a time. Don't give up.


    Diana 50

  • dltnhm
    dltnhm Member Posts: 420
    edited December 2012

    I just want to thank you all for pressing on to rebuild this thread. The other thread was a place I have visited the last 10+ months to read from those who had traveled this road before me.

    Most days (when I look back at my experience) I have been fine over this first year+ with my breast cancer diagnosis. I have not yet reached the one year mark in learning that I was stage IIIa - that came with the pathology after my umx last January.

    But I did have hard days and every now and then one hits - often out of nowhere. And although I know someone elses's 5+ story is not a guarantee for me - it is an intimate sharing from someone who has been there.

    So please continue to seek the voices.

    Much love,

  • karen1956
    karen1956 Member Posts: 4,468
    edited December 2012

    I will go back and get my posts from the "old" thread, but for now, I just want to say HI and say I am 6 years 10 months old from diagnosis and doing well....I was Dx 02/03/2006.  Since that time I've seen my DD#1 graduate college and get married; DS finish high school and go to college, Hawaii and two Israel twice; and DD#2 become a Bat Mitzvah and is now in grade 9.  I've been to Israel 4 times (1st time to celebrate survivorship with DH and DD#2), once with DD#1 for the 1st Israel RFTC and twice on my own.  There is life after BC!!!!1

  • karen1956
    karen1956 Member Posts: 4,468
    edited December 2012

    I will go back and get my posts from the "old" thread, but for now, I just want to say HI and say I am 6 years 10 months old from diagnosis and doing well....I was Dx 02/03/2006.  Since that time I've seen my DD#1 graduate college and get married; DS finish high school and go to college, Hawaii and two Israel twice; and DD#2 become a Bat Mitzvah and is now in grade 9.  I've been to Israel 4 times (1st time to celebrate survivorship with DH and DD#2), once with DD#1 for the 1st Israel RFTC and twice on my own.  There is life after BC!!!!1

  • karen1956
    karen1956 Member Posts: 4,468
    edited December 2012

    I will go back and get my posts from the "old" thread, but for now, I just want to say HI and say I am 6 years 10 months old from diagnosis and doing well....I was Dx 02/03/2006.  Since that time I've seen my DD#1 graduate college and get married; DS finish high school and go to college, Hawaii and two Israel twice; and DD#2 become a Bat Mitzvah and is now in grade 9.  I've been to Israel 4 times (1st time to celebrate survivorship with DH and DD#2), once with DD#1 for the 1st Israel RFTC and twice on my own.  There is life after BC!!!!1

  • karen1956
    karen1956 Member Posts: 4,468
    edited December 2012

    I deleted the above 2 posts are they were duplicates of my post....I was trying to figure out how to find my posts on the old thread and kept using the back button and my post would come up and I kept clicking it and then I see it was here 3 times......

    So I finally found my dashboard thanks to Linda Lou...I was looking under my profile which is why I couldn't find it...never looked on the left!!! duh!!!

    So here is my post from my 6th pretty much says a lot of what I wrote above, but I'm posting it here again.....mostly cuz I like what it says.....There will be another anniversary post in a couple months!!!!

    Posts: 3,550

    karen1956 wrote:

    6 years ago (02/03/2006) I heard the dreaded words, "you have breast cancer"....the start of the BC journey.....I endured all the Tx and I'm still here!!!!  Of course, I'll do the real celebration in 3 weeks, when I see my onc for my 6 month check up and get confirmation that I'm still dancing with NED!!!

    In the past 6 years, I've had the pleasure of seeing my DD#1 graduate college and get married, DS leave high school, work and go to college and be a part of DD#2 Bat Mitzvah and watch her grow into an amazing teen-ager.....and thats just the beginning of things to look forward to.....

    I've been thinking of the date all week, but it was not the first thing on my mind when I woke up....the snow storm in Denver was.....watching the weather, GMA and previews of superbowl wasn't till I came to the computer and on fb and saw something about the anniversary of fb starting that the date hit me in the that is good!!! 

    Looking forward to growing into a cranky old lady (instead of a cranky middle age lady)......Karen

  • Ihopeg
    Ihopeg Member Posts: 92
    edited December 2012

    Heres mine from laast year!

    Congrats to all for 5 plus years! 
    Five years ago today, November 10, 2006, I got the phone call that changed my life forever:(. I am so glad I got to watch both of my children graduate from high school and hope to watch them grow more! Thanx to all my fellow survivors for all of the encouragement over the years! Everyone, keep up the good work and stay strong!

  • kar123
    kar123 Member Posts: 72
    edited December 2012

    Thanks for starting this post again!  I too will miss SherriG.  She was an inspiration and calming influence on these boards.  Glad to still have all you wonderful ladies to carry on and hope to be able to post my 5+ storie here in a few years!

    Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!


  • Cpacino
    Cpacino Member Posts: 7
    edited December 2012

    Thank you beautiful lady's for sharing your stories. I'm newly diagnosed with stage IIIA triple negative. I'm 36 with 3 wonderful children 11, 3 and 18 months and terrified of the unknown but hopeful that I too will be here Posting an encouraging story for women like me. Merry Christmas to you all and thank you!!! Forward, upward, onward. Cheryl

  • yatcomw
    yatcomw Member Posts: 57
    edited December 2012

    My diagnosis was Stage IIIC...i had an 8cm tumor with at least 17 nodes positive.  Cancer was creeping outside of several nodes.

    It was also in the skin both IDC and ILC.....and in the blood....

    With all this bad news.... I am 8.5 years out and feel great.

    The only advice I can give you is to live each day .......don't waste a moment worrying about this.....when & if it comes back you can deal with it then.

    I have spent over 8 years being a soccer mom......a drama mom.....opened up a business...saw my daughter go off to the college her mom went to....

    My children were in elementary and middle school when I was in high school and college.  Life went on.....

    Fists up


  • sugarplum
    sugarplum Member Posts: 70
    edited December 2012

    And here I am, jumping on board to add my post - nothing fancy today as I'm actually at work, but my signature pretty much tells my story...

    Love to all who journey with me!


  • Cpacino
    Cpacino Member Posts: 7
    edited December 2012

    Thank you Jacqueline for your story and wonderful advice and Julie for the taking the time to share your story. They both give me much hope. Cheryl

  • [Deleted User]
    [Deleted User] Member Posts: 8
    edited December 2012

    This is my first time in years to post here, even though I do read some. I have forgotten my old user name and password. I posted here in 2004-2009 but then moved on. I remember SherriG!  We were diagnosed around the same time and went through treatment together. I hope she is well. She was always a strong support for me and many others. I am looking around the site today and don't see Heidi, Teresa, Rosie, Kim and many of the others from back in the day. I am trusting they have all moved on with life.

    Here is my story. I was diagnosed in August 2004 with stage lllb ILC with 8+ nodes. My chemo was TAC and I did it before surgery. I had a bilateral mastectomy and then 30 rads. After taking Femara for 5 years I switched to Aromosin and am still taking it. I will see my onc in Jan and see where I go from there. Right now, I am 8 years and 4 months out. I am glad I checked in here today and could add my story.

    Blessings to all of the stage lll warriors who read here.

  • kathleen1966
    kathleen1966 Member Posts: 67
    edited December 2012

    Thanks for your post and I really think you are right, they have moved on and are fine.  I meet stage III women all the time.  My latest was a mother of a friend of my younger son (age 7 now). She was diagnosed triple negative with node involvement five years ago.  Another friend, also stage 3 is now on her 10th year of living free of cancer.  Both of these women were diagnosed in their thirties and they both had young children. I am 2 1/2  years out at the moment, not a long time.  But I feel it is long for the type of cancer I had.  Hormone negative and Her2+.  The truth is that if you are told you have a 30% of having a distant recurrence, the 70% is much larger and there is much hope and reason to feel you will be ok. Women get diagnosed with locally advanced cancer every day and they survive, why not us, why not you, newbie who may be reading this?  Don't lose hope just yet!

  • hopefour
    hopefour Member Posts: 104
    edited December 2012

    Love personal stories of survival and hope to share my story when I am five years out. Until than I will share about a 63 year old woman who is 7 1/2 years out and had 36 positive nodes...yes all 36 nodes that were taken were positive!!! I was blessed to meet her when I was dx. Her name is Judy and she wore a pink wig when she was having a happy day through treatment!! She believes strongly in joy and laughter and it surrounds you when you are with her. Her breast tumor was very small, ER+ PR+ and very aggressive!

    Five years ago this Dec. 23 my mentor, Nancy( a kind woman who called me after dx and asked if she could encourage me through my BC journey) had her last rad treatment!! She counts from end of treatment. She had 8 nodes and a huge breast tumor that were ER+ PR+!

    Thankful they both are still in my life and offer me hope on those dark days when fear is winning the battle!! I am also so thankful for those here that share their story of hope!!

  • Unknown
    edited December 2012

    Those are wonderful! I really appreciate everyone's effort to help rebuild this thread.  I think it was a very important thread to show others that you CAN survive Stage 3 breast cancer.  I hate that we have lost SherriG's thread with all the wonderful history.  I wish it could be restored with Sherri's name as the rightful creator.  Since that can't happen, this is the next best thing I think.

    I just also want to say a big CONGRATULATIONS to all our survivors.

  • liv-
    liv- Member Posts: 272
    edited December 2012

    thanks for posting and retrieving old posts.

    its great to read long term survivors, gives us newbies hope.

    well done, all of you are such warriorsSmile