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Posts: 238
Joined: Sep 2003

Hi yall,

I hope everyone's doing well. I am freezing my fanny off in Montreal (it's -36 degrees Celcius). What were my ancestors smoking? What in the world could have pocessed them to come to Canada? Why, why! And the best part is everyone is always surprised by the cold. IT'S LIKE THIS EVERY SINGLE YEAR! Yet, for some reason, every winter the cold weather is a shocker. I'll never understand.

Now, onto more serious matters, although, at this point, I think the cold may kill me before the cancer. He, he! But, seriously, my scans results are sort of in. Last week, I got a message from my primary nurse saying that there has been no change. Not exactly the news I was hoping for, however I have only done two rounds of the oxaliplatin/Xeloda and a partial response is still a response! Yesterday, I phoned her to have her read me the results. That was not so good. Most of the pulmonary malignancies are still the same size except for one, which is bigger (not good) and then she started to talk about two spots on my liver. I was like, no, no, no, there was no two hepatic lesions the last time around. There was one that we ruled out as malignant because of an MRI and PET, so there should only be one begnin spot. So what is this second spot doing there? Anyways, I'm trying not to freak because this was over the phone with the nurse so I made an appointment with my doctor for Thursday to look at the report together. But I'm pretty scared, I guess. New spots signal treatment failure and there are not that many options left after this. I don't even need the cancer to disappear, I just want them to control it so I can make it to my 22nd birthday! Is that too much to ask? And my mom is making me so sad. When she came home and I told her that there was apparently no change (which is what I'm now actually hoping for) she burst into tears asking how come the chemo didn't make them all go away. I hate seeing her cry! Then, my mother started making insane propositions, asking me if they'll do a lung transplant even though I have told her a million times that they can't do one because the malignant cells are circulating in my blood. It makes me so depressed. I just don't know what to say to her. I don't want to die either and I'm trying my absolute best to survive as long as I can, but my body is refusing to respond the way I want it to. I don't know what to do. I'm trying my best to hold it all together, but it's hard when my mother is crying.

Sad in Monreal,

spongebob's picture
Posts: 2598
Joined: Apr 2003

Ahoy, andrea -

First, a word about your ancestors: Recall if you will that it was the vikings (MY ancestors) who populated "Vineland". Remember that many of them came over from Greenland - a HUGE ruse played on the world - it wasn't green at all. It was an icey wasteland! So, really, between Norway and Greenland, Canada was probably pretty much like Miami Beach. I guess that's why so many Canadian snowbirds go to Florida during the winter!

OK... on to more serious matters... I understand that you're scared s#!tless right now. I'm not going to try to give you any sort of false hope here, but i am going to point out two situations where the scans were wrong: I recently read about a woman who was diagnosed with lung mets that weren't actually lung mets - she had the flu. Second one is my mom who had a definite lesion on her hip bone (after he 3rd bout with the dragon). it was on a PET sacan, two CTs and a two X-rays. When the surgeon did an x-ray to guide him in for a biopsy, it was gone. A second x-ray confirmed it was gone.

I don't know what else to tell you tell you, except to have faith and know that each and every one of the semicolons love you and are keeping you in our hearts and prayers. Keep us all posted and - most importantly - hang tough. Go give you mom some adult supervision and tell her to pull it together. Sharpen up that broadsword, girl, and kick its @$$!

Lemme know if you need anything.

- SB

jsabol's picture
Posts: 1156
Joined: Dec 2003

Stay warm, sweetie. Montreal is a beautiful city, but we only visit, don't live there! Boston is pretty darn cold this year, too, and we didn't have the foresight to build any underground malls, just a tunnel whose roadway freezes over!
Hang in there and hear what your onc has to say. You must be so strong to be dealing with this. As a mom, I can imagine that yours is freaking out. I'm sorry for that; you need your people to be strong for you. Anyone else around who can help? Can you ask your onc if they have some ideas to help your mom so you don't have to take care of her emotions, too? Positive thoughts and (((((((( hugs ))))))) coming your way. Judy

Posts: 176
Joined: Mar 2003

Hang in there girl wait until you talk to you onc and I agree with SB your mom has to get conrol talk to her and your onc maybe she could see a counsilor. Keep us posted. I do know what you are going through.

StacyGleaso's picture
Posts: 1249
Joined: Mar 2003

Hi Andrea,

I must say you are SO brave! You are totally taking this whole situation so well, and that is very commendable. Here you are taking on so much, and one of your big concerns is keeping your mom's feelings in perspective...you are an amazing daughter!

Ok, think of it this way...how do you feel? I mean are you in constant pain? Or do you just think that something isn't right because you have a bunch of tests telling you that you're supposed to be sick? I am not down-playing your condition, but there are two sides to every proverbial coin. Yes, sounds like you do have cancer. (No real shock, right?!?!?) But if you honestly aren't in pain to the point where you can't function, drive, take vacations, etc, then it's only as bad as you want to believe it.

Every day when I wake up, I think in the back of my mind of the "what-ifs"...What if the cancer comes back? What if my kids end up motherless because of this? What if I'm someday on life support and a vegetable? Then, after about 20 seconds of that, I say, "Screw it...I feel fine...I am here today...and with my luck, I probably beat this silly disease, and end up dying as a result of a bee sting or something totally unrelated. Every day is what you make of it. Tests are not 100%. It truly is a case of mind over matter, and if you don't mind, it really doesn't matter!

Please take care of yourself, and in all reality, we should all treat each day as if it was our last...what are we saving every emotion for? A rainy day that may or may not come?

Ok, I'm putting down the pom poms and backing away slowly...you know we are all here for you, so stay warm, stay positive, and God bless you!


spongebob's picture
Posts: 2598
Joined: Apr 2003

Succumbing to a bee sting? I know what will get me some day - I'll probably choke on a blueberry/bulgar wheat smoothie!

StacyGleaso's picture
Posts: 1249
Joined: Mar 2003

...laced with vodka...

Anonymous user (not verified)

Dear, dear Andreae:

Being a fellow Canadian (yup, raised in Ottawa), I can well remember the endless, cold, cold winters. I am grateful my family moved to Southern California when they did, but you know what, there are still many, many times when I miss it all. But that's only for a few hours and reality hits (LOL).

Everyone has said it so eloquently already. I got the same answers when I recently posted about Bert's CEA rising, subsequent CAT Scan that was inconclusive of what exactly multiple lung nodules were, and now we face the PET Scan next week. Speak to your oncologist Andrea and I strongly feel, although it is only my opinion, that your mom should see a doctor as well. I did and have been placed on meds to help me cope. No, lump is still in my throat but I can think and rationalize better and be more on the offense that always worrying about the what ifs. Additionally, the constant anxiety and ups and downs were and are ruining my own health, which makes me of little value for my mom and Bert. And, it was tearing my own mom apart to see her daughter, me (ta-dah) go through all of this thus not enabling her to fight her best fight because she was so preoccupied with thoughts about me. Suggest it to your mom. It can't hurt.

As far as everything else is concerned, by all means, pay attention to scans but as you can see from SB's post (and many others that I have personally spoken with), they can change from nothing, to something, to nothing. Many times it all depends who reads them, the lab that is doing them, and other things. Again, speak with your oncologist and do not, under any circumstances, throw in the towel. You have many more birthdays ahead of you to celebrate...just keep that thought in mind.

I continue to be awed by your strength & courage. God Bless and Keep you, Andreae.


Posts: 1
Joined: Jan 2004

Sweetheart - you need to stay focused on your own well being. You sound like a very special woman - it is no wonder your mother is so sad. However - she has to deal with her own feelings and stay positive for you. I know it would be horrific for my daughter to have this disease. I am not sure how I would cope but I know that you need to stay the course. Just because one treatment does not give you the results you wish for, doen't mean there isn't something else that may. You have great courage - as does anyone trying to battle this disease. It is a day by day challenge and there is nothing I can say to change the reality of your situation. I just want you to know that I care about you and will pray for your continuing strength.
((hugs)) sweet young beautiful lady

nanuk's picture
Posts: 1362
Joined: Dec 2003

Andreae: Focus on each one of those cancer cells, and imagine each and every one being zapped out of your body by your positive thoughts-they are unwanted invaders; don't let them in..remember your comment to your doctor that you are willing to fight and go to the brink..Don't ever give up!!

2bhealed's picture
Posts: 2085
Joined: Dec 2001

Our sweet baby girl,

Yes that's YOU since you are the "baby" on here. I send you my biggest ((((((hug))))) too.

Re: mother--she needs to put her own fear aside in front of you. She can do her kicking and screaming and pillow pounding privately. You need her to be positive and strong because the last thing you need is to put any of your energy into getting *her* through this. My sister wrote us all a letter explaining that fighting cancer took all her strength and she needed us to always be up and postitive with her, in front of her and if we couldn't be then don't come to visit. There was 3 weeks when I just didn't have any energy to visit her under those stipulations. I had a newborn myself and her battle was taking its toll on me too. But it wasn't about me so I honored her wishes. It was very hard b/c I never knew if I would see her again.

Now true to everyone's personalities on here we have given our advice...the soldier encourages you to do battle, our famous Stacy the Stage 4 Survivor who has an AWESOME attitude gave you her rah-rah and now the hippie radical alternative will give you hers:

Start juicing!


It can't hurt and it's worth a try in conjunction with what the doctors are doing. Please give it a thought.

Have you cut out all sugar, dairy, meat, (don't cry SB) and alcohol? Have you added supplements and anti-oxidents that kill the free radicals that can cause cancer? There are things that YOU can do.

We all love you here, I hope you know that, and we feel your pain. Don't we ever!!

peace, emily the juicing evangelist

Lisa Rose's picture
Lisa Rose
Posts: 597
Joined: Mar 2003

Hi Andreae,
There's not much I can say! It's pretty well all been said. I am praying that your Oncologist will have some positive news for you today that will lift your spirits.


Posts: 33
Joined: Nov 2002

Hi, I know this seems so unfair, but you have to have faith and do some research yourself, find out what is out there for your type and stage of cancer and ask your doctor will this work, over and over until he says yes lets try it, also keep asking here onthis site I found out about alot of different treatments from people right here. I am 36 and was 34 when dx, I have stage 3b lung cancer and have been in treantment for 20 months I have been on three different chemos and finally this one is working for me, so you can find one for you too........If you would like to talk more you can get my email off my profile on this site, I find the more I talk the more I learn and the better I feel. My mom took it hard at first, and now just in the past 6 months my older sister was dx with breast cancer, so she now has 2 duaghters with cancer in the late stages and we are dealing with it good......I do understand how your mom must feel I have kids and it would kill me to see them go through this. Your spirit is wonderful and you need to stay cheerful and keep your humor, we all have our bad days and we are allowed to cry but don't let the cancer control you and how you feel and act, it is still your life and you make the best of it. You are on my mind and in my heart and prayers.


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