If someone were to ask me Christmas of 2013 where I would be in three years, it most definitely would not be where I am today. I think it was three days after Christmas that year that I found out I had Multiple Myeloma, an ‘uncurable’ cancer. I never would have guessed that three years from then I would still be on several chemotherapies, still have to deal with pain, still be so incredibly nervous every time I visit my myeloma specialist because most of the myeloma world says that recurrence is inevitable. But, this is exactly where I find myself, and I have no other choice than to walk the path God is leading me on today.
Much has happened since my last blog. My kids have grown like weeds, my hair has grown back and my husband and I continue to grow closer every day! That’s alot of growing! I’ve also taken part in a few myeloma trainings through a wonderful organization called Patient Power. I’ve written a few articles for the Myeloma Crowd, and I still talk to everyone that will listen about the life altering world of being diagnosed with a cancer most people expect you to die from in just a few short years. Not all, but most.
Amazing things are happening in the multiple myeloma field. Actually, amazing things are happening in the realm of all cancers. Today, targeted therapies using your own genetics is becoming more and more the norm. We have T-Cell therapies where patients are given an engineered form of the HIV virus that kills tumor cells and so many new chemotherapies that, as my doctor likes to say, ‘adds to our toolbox of care.’ This gets me around to the point of this blog. None of these new therapies would be possible without support from the many foundations that donate to research for the cure.
Please watch the Fighting Fire with Fire video released by the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. The LLS funds research for the blood cancers, including Multiple Myeloma. Without the LLS, I might not be in remission today, or I might have died in my first 18 months, which is the amount of time many myeloma patients were given only a few short years ago.
Over the last few days, you may have seen commercials for Light the Night at the Devon Boathouse in OKC this coming Friday, November 4th. Light the Night is the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s main fundraiser where survivors, warriors, family and friends come together to honor those who have survived, those who are fighting and those who have lost their blood cancer battle. Incyte Pharmaceutical has honored me by sponsoring a Light the Night team in my name.
This is a family friendly event, including activities for kids, fireworks, and a live band. I would love to see as many people as possible support this cause, not only for me, but for the thousands of kids and adults in our community affected by blood cancer today and in the future. If you can’t come out on Friday night, please consider donating. You can donate to our team, which Incyte will match, or you can donate directly to me. I can promise you it will be money well spent!
Thank you so much for your continuing support and prayer! These last three years have not been easy, but they have been easier thanks to all of you!
‘For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.’ Jeremiah 29:11