Help the Harris Family Fight Cancer
My breast surgeon called me on March 11th with the results of the biopsy: it was breast cancer and she wanted to see me and my husband in her office the next afternoon. During that appointment, I was diagnosed with Invasive Lobular Carcinoma, grade (stage) II. Life got a little crazy after that. The next few weeks were filled with blood work, CT scans, MRI scans, meetings with an oncologist, radiation oncologist, and a plastic surgeon. Being a stay-at-home mom, this process was complicated by the need to find last minute day care for our two young daughters now aged 2 and 4 years old. Because of the lack of family history of the disease, I had genetic testing done in an effort to identify the cause of my cancer. Everything came back clear. I was the “random case” with no known cause. Despite having been unable to find a cause, this was actually great news to me and my husband; this meant that I was not carrying a mutated gene that could be passed on to either of our girls.
On April 1st, I had my first of 12 chemotherapy infusions. I was treated for 8 weeks with Cytoxan and 4 weeks with Adriamycin/Taxol. We were elated to find that my team of doctors all agreed the chemotherapy had done its job; the tumor had significantly shrunk, and I was immediately able to have my port removed! Never again would I cringe because one of our daughters head-butted me in the chest. To me, this was the best news I could’ve received – that thing was a pain in the butt! On July 27th, I had a bilateral mastectomy, followed with my initial reconstructive surgery on August 31st. The final pathology report revealed that the surgeons were able to remove the remainder of the cancer from my chest, breast, and armpit during the mastectomy. Our prayers had been answered.
We were then highly recommended for proton radiation therapy (much less damaging to your internal organs) because of my age, and our having a young family. I began the treatments a few weeks ago, and I am now nearing the end. Once completed, I have a few more reconstructive procedures to come, and I will then be placed on hormone therapy for 5 years. Unfortunately, a significant portion of these incredibly expensive treatments (and treatments to come) have not been covered by our insurance.
Despite all the challenges we have faced, we cannot thank our family and friends enough for their unwavering support, and while we couldn’t have asked for a more positive outcome, we are finding that the financial burdens are ever increasing. As a result, we are graciously asking for your continued support in fighting along with us, so we can show cancer that it may have made us stumble, but it never made us fall.
sending prayers to you and the family.. i am also sharing the fundraisers in hopes people who can afford to will contribute.. i am sorry i am not in the position to donate at this time.. best wishes for a thorough recovery.. Sheryl Harris