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Quality over quantity

pinkkari09's picture
pinkkari09
Posts: 878
Joined: Sep 2009

First of all, I need to apologize again for taking so long to get back to my CSN Family. I've made the biggest decision In my LIFE this past week and I pray with all my heart that it was the right one.

I've been on chemo or rads for over 3 years, and had a lot of rough s/e. I've had MANY operations to include my bilateral, both ovaries, lattisamus flap immediate recon with all of 3 surgeons, under the lights for 7 hours, all sides opened up for something.....I'm not going to type my story, I'll certainly share if you ask. We've been chasing my TNBC for over 3 years and we just can't seem to catch the beast.

My team, mostly my Onc. say I've outlived many sentences by average. I know this is true but along the way I endured SO SO much, as we all do.
Infections, grade two neuropathy, severe loss of movement, a divorce..........could go on forever but why relive that, right:)

We, meaning me,myself, and I have decided its time to just let palliative care doc (whom I REALLY like) manage my pain while I live my life. I can say I feel great right now, I haven't had that awful Doxil in over a month. My body is trying to heal from all the damage and I know this means the cancer is growing in which it grows fast, I already feel it back in some nodes :(

Of course I've been talking to my family and friends about this and I've been pushing to feel better, in which they all stand behind me, they've seen all I've been through.

I'm now under the palliative care and I will no longer be running to several appointments, scans, blood draws.....another on forever one. Instead, I will have a nurse stop out once a week to check one my well being, they'll get all my meds for me, assist in ANYTHING that I may need, even the social worker, counselor, and Chaplin will come by if I ask. I must say I'm way less stressed now and I feel much better. Granted I'm on a very high dose of pain medications, they are doing a wonderful job of elevating them so they cut the pain, and yet not turn me into a zombie.

Right now I'm still able to take care of myself, but as things progress (which they say 2 months at best but we all know about the ones I've already beat, and the power of prayer) I will eventually be moving into The Daugherty Hospice", which is a BEAUTIFUL, peaceful, place. It's hard to grasp this and I'd be a liar if I told you I wasn't scared, I have so many things I want to do yet, I want to watch my children's lives prosper, I want to hold a grandchild, I want to see things, I've never been on a cruise, my all time dream.

I'm going to stop now so I can get this much submitted because I really need you all right now and I can't wait to see if anyone else has done this. I can't wait to hear what you think.

I'm not a quitter, I just want some good days, I want quality over quantity so I can at least do a few more small things, like yesterday I painted dog nails for the first time (My male Italian greyhound has pink nails, he's sporting them for BC awareness:). I see the world in another whole new light, as I did in August of 2009 when I was first diagnosed, only much brighter.

Miles of Love,
~Kari

butterflylvr's picture
butterflylvr
Posts: 944
Joined: Apr 2011

My heart aches reading your post. You have been through more hardships then any one person should have to endure and you've done it with such class and grace. I admire and love your courage and spirit. I know this wasn't an easy decision for you to make . I too have often thought of how much I could push my body if I had too, I also will choose quality over quantity. I pray your remaining time you are achieving all you deserve, and you are surrounded by those that mean the world to you. For you sweet sister mean the world to us... And we will miss you when you are gone. Thank you for giving us a piece of your soul and may God watch over you in these next few months.

Love you dear sister...
Lorrie

BlownAway60's picture
BlownAway60
Posts: 833
Joined: Nov 2009

Dear Kari,
I don't post much anymore but I just read all of the wonderful comments written by all of the Kindred Spirits and a song by Faith Hill came to mind and it reminded me of you.

I hope you never lose your sense of wonder
You get your fill to eat but always keep that hunger
May you never take one single breath for granted
God forbid love ever leave you empty-handed
I hope you still feel small when you stand by the ocean
Whenever one door closes, I hope one more opens
Promise me that you'll give faith a fighting chance
And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance

I hope you dance
I hope you dance

I think you are a dancer and you have danced your way into everyone's heart.
Soul2Soul you are the best.

Hugs and prayers for lots of good days.
Donna

aisling8's picture
aisling8
Posts: 1324
Joined: Feb 2010

What heart wrenching decisions you're having to face.

I had these conversations, lots of them, five years ago with my friend. She decided, as you have, that she wanted some quality and she got that. We also talked about her sending a sign from heaven. We decided on doves, lots and lots of them so that I would know they were from her. Well, I saw a few, then about a hundred terra cotta doves in the patio display of a store which made me laugh cause I figured she was practicing. Two months before I was diagnosed with breast cancer hundreds and hundreds of doves followed me home from my walk one morning. I believe!!!

I send you back miles and miles of love.

xoxo
Victoria

phoenixrising's picture
phoenixrising
Posts: 1510
Joined: Feb 2007

Aw sweetie, you are not a quitter. It takes a lot of courage to face the unknown and do what's best for you. My heart aches that you had this decision to make but somehow I can imagine that now made you feel freer. I sincerely hope and pray that the time left is filled with love, comfort and spiritual fulfillment. Know you are loved and cherished by so many.

Much love to you
jan

Aortus's picture
Aortus
Posts: 967
Joined: Jan 2009

Kari, I can't begin to tell you how sorry I feel that you have been faced with this decision. It's harder still for me to find the right words to tell you how much I admire the courage and the grace you are demonstrating as you move forward. I remember how Moopy and I used to use the image of you plowing through snowdrifts with your college texts on the seat behind you as an example of how nobody can keep a Pink Sister down. I remember looking at the pictures of your great beach adventure and wondering how anyone (much less a BC warrior) could have so much fun. Well, guess what. You're giving us all an even better model now. Thank you so much, Kari, for always showing us how to live... and keep up the good work!

Love,
Joe

jnl's picture
jnl
Posts: 3873
Joined: May 2009

Don't you ever apologize. We just have been worried about you and it is obvious that you've been busy. I know this new chemo was hard on you, and, I understand your stopping it.

You have so much courage, grace and peace about you now Kari.

Live your life Kari and love your life, as, I know you do.

Love, Leeza

natly15's picture
natly15
Posts: 1934
Joined: Sep 2009

Kari I'm sending my love, lots of hugs and prayers. One Day At A Time. You are a hero, and dont you forget it. ((((((((((HUGS))))))))))

New Flower
Posts: 4140
Joined: Aug 2009

Kari
Please know that you have our love and support
Sending you a big hug

survivorbc09
Posts: 4378
Joined: Jun 2009

Thanks for sharing your decision with us Kari. You are the most amazing woman I've ever known and probably will ever know. Your courage, wisdom and strength are amazing.

Prayers for you,

Jan

RE's picture
RE
Posts: 4630
Joined: Feb 2004

Kari I too am so very sorry that you are faced with such a decision but I must say i do understand it. My eldest sister after two bc battles got pancreatic cancer and decided to stick with palliative care to allow herself to be able to enjoy the time she had remaining and enjoy it she did. She was much like you Kari, strong and beautiful always showing us how to live life to its fullest and how to love! Kari you have, are and always will be an inspiration to me! You will continue in my prayers asking God to lift you up in the coming months, always an inspiration!

♥ Sending all the love I can muster for my dear Pink Sister ♥

RE

Megan M's picture
Megan M
Posts: 3001
Joined: Dec 2009

I read this earlier, but, couldn't type anything. I will post something later.

I love you Kari!

Bella Luna's picture
Bella Luna
Posts: 1575
Joined: Aug 2009

Dearest Kari... it took courage to come to a decision that you know in your heart is right for you. You are in no way a quitter, not a one of us views you in that light at all. Lord knows you have endured so much in the past several years.

I sense that coming to terms with the next phase in your life has lighten the heavy load you had been caring. I can see how freeing it must be.

You are a very dear and special Pink Sister and I am honored to have gotten to know you on CSN. I wish you the best as you move forward with life. You still have plenty of life in you and I know the world is certainly brighter because you, dear one, are in it. I love you and send cyber (((hugs))) to you, along with Miles of Love right back at You!

Your SoCal Sister in Pink,
Ines

cinnamonsmile
Posts: 1059
Joined: Dec 2010

I have tears for you. What a woman you are. It makes me happy though, that you made such a tough decision for yourself, but can feel "good" for awhile. I know it must be rough for you, but maybe you get a sense of peacefullness even though a far away kind as you are not suffering s/e, running to doctors, chemo, etc.

I am glad you have such a beautiful home to go to when the end draws near.

I can not imagine how you feel knowing the end is near, but enjoy the time you have left. It is such a double edged sword, isn't it?

Maybe you can start writing your children letters so they have something of you that they can hold and see before you go, some special words of memories, advice, things you love about them? I know, if I had a great mom like you, I would think the world to have a surprise when you leave this world.

skipper54's picture
skipper54
Posts: 936
Joined: Feb 2011

Dear Kari,
What strength! I'm sending love, hugs, and prayers by the boatload. It's a hard decision but you have to do what's right for you. A friend made that decsion earlier this year and we all respected her & the decision and loved her for her strength of spirit. Know that we'll be with you, surrounding you with pink power to face whatever lies ahead.

DianeBC's picture
DianeBC
Posts: 3888
Joined: Jun 2009

It's hard to write what I want to say, but, just know that you are everyone's hero on this site and always will be Kari. No one and I mean NO ONE will ever be the strong, beautiful, caring, sweet sister that you've been to each of us.

We are surrounding you, and, will always with our love.

Prayers and love,

Diane

Kristin N's picture
Kristin N
Posts: 1969
Joined: Mar 2009

I haven't been on in awhile and just saw this post. I don't know what to say Kari except that I love you, I support you and I will be praying as hard as I can for you!

Pink Rose
Posts: 495
Joined: Nov 2012

I'm new and just came across this post. I am amazed at the outpouring of love and admiration everyone here has for you. You must be one amazing, wonderful survivor. I will keep you in my prayers also.

Jean 0609's picture
Jean 0609
Posts: 2368
Joined: Jun 2010

No words can express how I feel, so I will just say WE LOVE YOU!

xoxo,
Jean

SIROD's picture
SIROD
Posts: 2204
Joined: Jun 2010

A wish you many days of quality time with your children, family and friends. You certainly are not a quitter but a woman who knows when the treatments are more lethal than the disease.

May this phase of your journey be a good one.

Best,

Doris

Clementine_P's picture
Clementine_P
Posts: 398
Joined: Feb 2011

Kari,

You are nowhere near a quitter. In fact you are incredibly brave and courageous. The strength you are showing in what must be a terribly difficult time is inspiring to say the least. Choosing quality over quantity and time with your family in relative comfort is a wonderful choice and clearly the best one for you. I hope that the comments on this thread give you more peace with your decision and the love shown gives you strength.

I wish you peace and comfort,
Clementine

missrenee's picture
missrenee
Posts: 2137
Joined: Apr 2010

with us. I am also Stage IV and have done some thinking about if or when this scenario becomes my reality. As all the others have said, you have been a model of grace under fire. The dignity and humor you have had while facing such hard decisions and difficult treatment have been a valuable lesson to us all. I thank you so much for your kind advice, words of comfort and for being my friend on this board.

No one can predict the amount of time any of us have. My wish and prayer for you is to have many, many quality days ahead filled with love, faith and laughter.

Love and hugs, Renee

Double Whammy's picture
Double Whammy
Posts: 2338
Joined: Jun 2010

I'm so sorry to hear this news, Kari, but I understand your decision and support it. I remember when you were struggling with whether to have further treatments at all. You did and it gave you time to do some of the things you wanted to in spite of feeling bad much of the time. I hope now you can continue to do some more of these things while feeling well, and I hope that this lasts for a long long time.

I will continue to send much love, hugs and prayers to support you.

Love to you and yours,
Suzanne

Megan M's picture
Megan M
Posts: 3001
Joined: Dec 2009

I didn't know what to write before, and, I am not so sure that I do now. I know that quality of life is always better than quantity. I understand that. I just wish that you didn't have to make this choice. It is just so unfair!

I remember when you used to be on more, that you were always so positive with everyone. You'd always shine a bright light in what might be a sad post. You're like that Kari, a bright light in everyone's life.

I will be praying for you and I am sending you lots of love!

Kylez's picture
Kylez
Posts: 3765
Joined: May 2009

You are so brave Kari! I don't know if I could handle this with as much grace, dignity and courage as you are. I am really amazed!

You are so beautiful Kari, on the inside and the outside. I pray that you know and will always remember that your pink sisters love you and that we're here for you no matter what you might need.

I am so happy that I can call you, not only my sister, but, my friend.

I'm always here 4U,

Kylez

Angie2U's picture
Angie2U
Posts: 2993
Joined: Sep 2009

Sending you lots of hugs, positive thoughts, love and prayers. You are amazing!

With love and prayers,

Angie

Kylez's picture
Kylez
Posts: 3765
Joined: May 2009

Posting a big hi and a big hug to you! (((( KARI ))))

Ctine70's picture
Ctine70
Posts: 150
Joined: Sep 2012

Kari
You are the strongest bravest person I know. You are an inspiration to us all!
You will be in my thoughts and prayers always
Hugs Christine

elm3544's picture
elm3544
Posts: 748
Joined: Jul 2009

You are an inspiration to us all. May you find all the peace and beauty that you seek in this life and enjoy each day.

Sunrae's picture
Sunrae
Posts: 808
Joined: Oct 2009

Kari, What a wonderful inspiration you are to all of us. You are so much a fighter and its a testimony to your amazing spirit and courage that you can make this very difficult decision. You have given yourself permission to live for the day and make it the best you can have. You are in our thoughts and prayers and you are surrounded by all the pink sisters and brothers who love you. Peace and comfort to you and your family.

Alexis F's picture
Alexis F
Posts: 3604
Joined: May 2009

Kari, you are an inspiration, a breathe of fresh air to all of us. You've shown each of us how to live our lives and how to live it to the fullest. You've been faced with some tough decisions and have made the best one for you.

I will always be praying for you and know that you are loved by all.

Hugs, prayers and love,

Lex

mom62
Posts: 601
Joined: Mar 2004

Kari,

I applaud your decision. You are doing what is best for you as a person. I hope when I get there I am able to choose what is best for me as well. It must be scary and I understand about missing things. I think about that all the time myself and I'm stable. I have come to realize though that there will always be things I miss when ever I go. If you get a chance read the book Heaven is Real. It is truly inspiring. You will always be with your children they are part of you. I'm here for you and praying for you tonight as I do every night. You hold a special place in my heart as you have always been such a positive person and I respect that so much. I'm glad you will get some quality time with your family, enjoy.

With Love,
Sister to Sister
Terry

roseann4
Posts: 994
Joined: Sep 2009

The choice to let go is one many of us have to make. I would hope I would do the same when the time comes. Enjoy each precious moment. That's all any of us has for sure.

Love, peace, and joy,

Roseann

jnl's picture
jnl
Posts: 3873
Joined: May 2009

Hi Kari! Just saying that I hope you're having a good day, and, to please continue to post on here.

Love, Leeza

DianeBC's picture
DianeBC
Posts: 3888
Joined: Jun 2009

Lots more prayers and big ole cyber hugs!

CypressCynthia's picture
CypressCynthia
Posts: 4017
Joined: Oct 2009

Kari, you are not a quitter. You are a pioneer, showing us all how to live and die with dignity. My heart is broken and I don't know what to say, but I love you and please know that I am here if you need anything and praying for you every day.

RozHopkins
Posts: 477
Joined: Dec 2010

But bless your heart. We are with you on your journey. XXXXXX

DebbyM's picture
DebbyM
Posts: 3294
Joined: Oct 2009

I'm sending you all the love and hugs in the world Kari! We are here for you, we are with you and we love you!

taleena's picture
taleena
Posts: 1612
Joined: May 2009

Oh sweet Kari... I don't jump in nearly often enough for all the pinks but it doesn't mean I don't watch from the sidelines praying... you are no quitter... not you... you are rock of strength... you've gone through so much that my mind though aware, just can't comprehend. You've gone through it with strength, courage, grace, and a kick ass attitude that many could never muster... I pray that you have many "good" days... that everyday you can do something that you truly enjoy surrounded by those you love... You are an inspiration... a blessing... I hope you can feel all of us around you... surrounding you with love.

Love,

~T

sea60's picture
sea60
Posts: 2601
Joined: May 2010

in reading your decision Kari. I know you have fear, as we all would. This is by no means a decision to quit, quite the opposite. It's a decision to live. Your faith will continue to give you the strength, grace and peace.

You are a hero in my eyes and I will pray for you. I would LOVE nothing more right now than to see pictures of you on that cruise. Go for it!

Warm embraces to you sister,

Sylvia

Kylez's picture
Kylez
Posts: 3765
Joined: May 2009

It's a beautiful day here today and I am hoping that you're going to have a beautiful day as well! You're always on my mind Kari and in my prayers.

Lots of hugs and prayers,

Kylez

LoveBabyJesus's picture
LoveBabyJesus
Posts: 1659
Joined: Jan 2011

Sweet Kari -- We never want to see a pink sister go through this, and from a selfish perspective, we want them with us, always. But I understand your decision. You gave it all you've got and you fought, and in a way, you emotionally keep on fighting. I don't see you as a quitter at all. I do think you're brave and inspiring. This helps me put things into perspective too. I think whatever decision you feel is good for you will be right for you and that is all that matters. Listen to your heart, closely. I will continue to pray for you. I will pray for you to feel at peace with every decision you make moving forward, for you not to experience any kind of pain, and to always feel well enough to drop a line or two for us here. I personally get happy when I see your post.

Sending you a huge hug and kisses from here. Love.

And you keep on walking...always...

camul's picture
camul
Posts: 2139
Joined: Dec 2010

I can feel the peace in your post. I will be there with you and for you and will continue to keep you in my prayers. I do not in any way see your decision as quitting, I totally see it as making the most of the time you have left with quality and dignity!

I thought I had come to terms with this until a couple of weeks ago when they offered me one more chance with a new regimen. The se of this have been very hard and I, along with my boys are questioning if this is the answer, or if I should have stayed on the path which was stopping the herceptin and do palliative with hospice. I know that it was heaven not being sick from chemo, the pain was manageable with a patch.

I wish you much happiness and hope you are able to spend this time with your family and friends and enjoy all of the small things in your life. This is a whole new journey that you are embarking on and along with the peace I can see being scared... I just have to believe that the next journey will be one that is free of pain and cancer, and filled with love and happiness.

Miles of love right back to you,
Carol

Ritzy's picture
Ritzy
Posts: 4384
Joined: Aug 2009

Miles of love to you today!

Blondiemomma's picture
Blondiemomma
Posts: 41
Joined: Apr 2012

All I can think right now is thank you. Thank you for showing us the way to live with joy, hope, and peace. Thank you for being brave enough to allow us into your most tender thoughts. Thank you for the kindness and guidance you have given us. I pray you get that cruise.
Agalia

lynn1950's picture
lynn1950
Posts: 2573
Joined: Jun 2008

Miles of love back at you, Kari. I so admire your courage, strength, and grace over these three difficult years. May you be blessed with many days, with much peace, and with the knowledge that of course you are doing the exact right thing. xoxoxo Lynn

VickiSam's picture
VickiSam
Posts: 8504
Joined: Aug 2009

my dear feisty, kick a$$ Sister in PINK. You made the right decision for you, and
your children. You did it your way, on your terms.

“Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass. It’s about dancing in the rain..!”

I wish and pray for many dances in the rain -- Miss Kari!

Miles of love, right back at you =

Vicki Sam

salls41's picture
salls41
Posts: 340
Joined: Apr 2012

Miles of Love back to you... I am sorry I did not have the opportunity to have known you longer but this short time I have known of you, I am so truly inspired! May your days be filled with smiles, love and sunshine. I pray for peace for your family as your time draws near. I believe by reading your post that you have peace. God Bless you Kari.
{{{{Hugs}}}}
Sandy

DianeBC's picture
DianeBC
Posts: 3888
Joined: Jun 2009

Miles of love for you today!

MsGebby's picture
MsGebby
Posts: 659
Joined: Oct 2011

are special in so many ways. My heart breaks for your family because I am sure this is so hard on them as well.

My life is nowhere near as complicated and yet reading about your struggles and accomplishments gives me much to think about. I can't begin to know what you are going through. But I thank you for being SO REAL.

My heart breaks too because I don't want you to go! Is that selfish of me? It's so hard to realize how dastardly this disease truly is. You, MAJW and many others (my close friends included) have shown us all how to JUST BE. Be who we are and not let cancer define us.

God has a funny way of showing His love at times like this. But I know that we are His disciples and will meet Him someday. It's our destinies. No matter how scary that is, I believe life will be harder on the ones who are left behind.

I cry floods of tears as I write this. I keep saying "this can't be true". I don't want this to be true.

Kari ... please know you are truly my hero. I don't know what else to say. But please know I love you, Dear Pink Sister.

I pray the Lord will hold you in His light as you continue your journey.

xoxo
Mary :(

AngieD's picture
AngieD
Posts: 504
Joined: Sep 2011

Kari, thank you so much for sharing your thoughts and this part of your journey with us. I think I can understand what an incredibly difficult decision it must have been. However, when the treatment becomes worse than the disease, I think you are very wise to opt for quality of life. No one knows how long any of us have. I hope you have a long, peaceful, pain free journey doing and enjoying the things that are most important to you. You are in my prayers and I hope you will stay in touch with us.
Angie

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