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OMG......15 Frickin' Years with Stage IIIC

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yatcomw
yatcomw Member Posts: 57
edited July 2020 in Stage III Breast Cancer

If someone told me back in 2004 that I would be out 15 years….I honestly wouldn't have believed them.

Most of you know my story…..but just in case someone missed it;) I found a lump myself after just having a clear exam at my doctor's office five weeks earlier. I had a rushed mammogram followed by a sonogram and was told nothing was there. I pushed to get a biopsy anyway. The surgeon was quite indignant and told me I was fine and didn't need it. I told him.. "I am going to hang around the pool with my kids this Memorial Day weekend and I want to do it with peace of mind". Several days later the same surgeon called my husband ( instead of me) and told him I was in a serious place and most likely had only a few years ahead of me. My children were 7, 9 and 13. "She would likely not see the youngest graduating elementary school." My tumor was 8cm with at least 17 nodes positive.

Being both a corporate executive and mother……it was most difficult not being in control….not being able to "fix" this. At the same time…. I wasn't going down without a big fight. I was going to do whatever I needed to do to improve my odds. I traveled the US to find an oncologist. One by one they all said the same thing….no good news….one actually cried in front of me. I finally found an oncologist in Texas who told me my cancer didn't scare him. He partnered with an oncologist here in Florida. We took a very aggressive approach which included blood transfusion, platelet transfusions, hospital stays, etc.

Over the next few years it was very scary…..I didn't buy any shoes… or clothes..and I was in the fashion business;) Why spend the money if I am not going to be here? I instead spent my money on memories with my kids. My biggest fear was that they would not remember me.....or how much I simply adored them. We went to Paris, Rome, tubing the springs, football games....took lots of pictures….it helped to have something in the near future planned to keep me from spiraling to a dark place.

So this week I am 15 years out and feel incredibly blessed. I have seen elementary graduations, high school graduations and college graduations----one still on the extended college plan;) We have made more memories than I can count. My children will remember me.

I continue to be on Femara which I believe has been my silver bullet.

My one simple advice to give you as I drink my merlot and celebrate with other old-timers marking anniversaries this month……..have hope... it's an awesome thing and....

BUY THE SHOES.

Jacqueline

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Comments

  • toyamjj
    toyamjj Member Posts: 41
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    I soooo enjoyed reading your story, thanks for sharing!

    Cheers

  • moderators
    moderators Posts: 7,912
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    Jacqueline -- thank you SO much for sharing your story. You are a true inspiration and it's posts like these that give hope to so many.

    Enjoy the celebration of this incredible milestone!

    ((((BIG HUGS))))

    --The Mods

  • Fritzmylove
    Fritzmylove Member Posts: 262
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    Congratulations on 15 years!!! I hope I am as fortunate as you to see my children grow up.

  • stephilosphy00
    stephilosphy00 Member Posts: 161
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    Thank you for giving me hope! Wish you the best!!

  • leesad
    leesad Member Posts: 100
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    Thank you so much for coming back and sharing!!! It means so much to read stories such as yours. Congratulations and continued good health to you!!
  • Homemadesalsa
    Homemadesalsa Member Posts: 138
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    I deeply appreciate your story. Congratulations!

  • juliesim
    juliesim Member Posts: 36
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    Jacqueline,

    I cannot imagine even one percent of what you've been through.. Thank you so so much for sharing your amazing story. Wishing you all the best.

    Julie

  • mom2bunky
    mom2bunky Member Posts: 54
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    marry me Jacqueline. What an inspiration you are!

  • castigame
    castigame Member Posts: 336
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    Ms. Jacqueline,

    You should see and enjoy your grandchildren to whom you will pass on your wisdom.

    Thank you from the bottom of my heart for the inspiration.


  • hannah1962
    hannah1962 Member Posts: 9
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    Congratulations, and thank you so much for sharing!

  • sugarplum
    sugarplum Member Posts: 70
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    Jacqueline: you've always been a hero to me! Keep on reaching those milestones and I'll do my best to follow in your footsteps...

    Virtual hugs - Julie

  • mavericksmom
    mavericksmom Member Posts: 1,127
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    Jacqueline, your post was so inspirational! I read it many times, and most likely will read it many more!

    Thank you for posting your story! Wishing you many, many more years! I bet your children grew up with an appreciation of life, and I would guess that they don’t give up on their personal challenges either! What a great role model you are!

  • victoriasecret
    victoriasecret Member Posts: 37
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    We really don't know who we touch when we log on here. I have met some wonderful cyber friends and also met a few in person.

    Jacqueline you have no idea how you held me up !When I was diagnosed sheer panic, I needed to find people who had survived similiar diagnosis. There were girls here you being one of them that I held onto in the early days so thank you. Life is good !Hugz C

  • palesa2018
    palesa2018 Member Posts: 58
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    Thank you Jacqueline for sharing your story. As a mum of two kids myself I pray everyday to see them grow and to be there for them. This has been very inspiring. Thank you

  • lkc
    lkc Member Posts: 180
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    Oh Jacqueline,

    I love this! You were/are truly a beacon for me back in those dark days. I am so very happy you are well and are continuing to make memories. Life is so precious and good. Toasting to you with my Cab.

  • lilliangish
    lilliangish Member Posts: 54
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    I'm shocked that a mammogram and sonogram missed an 8 cm tumor and 17 positive lymph nodes. Jeez!

    What a hopeful story. I'm so happy for you. Really inspired and thank you for sharing!

  • TectonicShift
    TectonicShift Member Posts: 102
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    SmileSmileSmileThumbsUpThumbsUpThumbsUpHeartHeartHeart

  • MamaOz
    MamaOz Member Posts: 239
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    Jacqueline,

    so awesome. !Thank you for sharing with us!!

  • MamaOz
    MamaOz Member Posts: 239
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    Jacqueline,

    so awesome. !Thank you for sharing with us!!

  • MamaOz
    MamaOz Member Posts: 239
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    julie, 13 years for you so awesome!! You girls give us hope! Can I ask how your bones have done with the arimidex? Im verging on osteoporosis but am afraid to take the bisphosfamates

    Marin

  • jmouse
    jmouse Member Posts: 51
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    Congratulations, Jacqueline! Thank you for sharing with us. I hope the years continue to pile up. :)

  • weesa
    weesa Member Posts: 78
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    Truly uplifting story...your okayness is enhancing mine. I thought I knew you story well, but I learned new things here tonite. Such a story of darkness being beaten back with courage. Weesa

  • DeeMay
    DeeMay Member Posts: 15
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    Jacqueline, I have read your posts over the past 5 years and will continue to. Always, uplifting, honest and relatable. Thank you, and huge congratulations to you!!

    Raising a virtual glass from Ireland😉

  • faithfulheart
    faithfulheart Member Posts: 25
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    God bless you sister !!! So happy to here !!!!

    Yes but the shoes !!!!❤️❤️❤️💕💕💕💕💕

  • ssinuk
    ssinuk Member Posts: 63
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    Oh my goodness. You have made me smile and cry this morning. I’m off shoe shopping. And this weekend I’m going to make a memory with my kid. Insoired🍷🍷

  • Artista964
    Artista964 Member Posts: 376
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    wow and wow! Here's to 15 more!

  • LMS458412
    LMS458412 Member Posts: 288
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    So very inspiring. I needed this today. Thanks for sharing.

  • hopefour
    hopefour Member Posts: 104
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    How did I miss this!!! Congratulations to you, Jacqueline on 15 years!!! I always love your posts and am so grateful for you always encouraging words! Thank you for always taking the time too come back and cheer us on!!

  • candilea
    candilea Member Posts: 13
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    Thank you for sharing this...I came here looking for some uplift, and got some.

  • poisedandpink
    poisedandpink Member Posts: 21
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    I need to read this today! Thank you so much for sharing and continuing to come back and give those of us still in treatment hope!