Thank you for visiting my Go Fund Me page! I so appreciate you for stopping by to read my story.
As many of you know, I found a funky lump in my neck right above my (left) collarbone a couple months ago. It didn’t hurt or move and seemingly appeared out of nowhere. I had developed some other strange symptoms a few weeks earlier: lethargy, itching all over my body with no rash, and drenching night sweats. I got checked out right away and was told that I likely had cancer. My doctors also suspected lymphoproliferative disease and/or some other rare and obscure autoimmune disorder. Either way, we couldn’t be sure until we had enough information for a definitive diagnosis.
Then came an onslaught of tests... ultrasounds, CT scans, PET scans, blood tests, a bone marrow biopsy, and finally a lymph node biopsy. To our tremendous relief, these tests ruled out all of the scary-rare disorders we were looking for. They did, however, reveal two separate conglomerations of tumorous lymph nodes in my chest. The first (and more obvious one) is in my neck/clavicle area on my left side. The second is in the middle of my chest behind my rib cage.
The first conglomeration wasn’t painful until after my lymph node excision. All the surrounding nodes reacted to the excision by swelling “in protest” to the removal of one of their “friends”. I’m told the swelling could last as long as 6-9 months. Ouch.
The second conglomeration is pressing into a lower lobe on my right lung, rendering said lung acutely collapsed. I don’t necessarily feel pain here, just a lot of pressure. My breathing is also a little shallow.
My official diagnosis is Classic Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, Stage 2B. Every doctor I’ve seen says that if you have to have cancer, this is the best to have. It is highly curable with impressive success rates for achieving remission... Woohoo! That doesn’t mean it will be easy. I’ll require 12 rounds of a 4-drug chemo cocktail. Treatments will be every 2 weeks, starting (most likely) just before Christmas. I just had my port placement surgery so I’m ready to get started!
Many of you have graciously reached out offering to help in any way we need... Honestly, I’m still trying to figure that out. It’s going to be a difficult ride, especially considering TJ’s hectic upcoming race schedule. Financially speaking, I haven’t needed any assistance yet... I met my insurance deductible early in 2017 due to kidney stone surgery, so all of my recent tests, appointments, procedures, etc. have been “free”. 2018 will be a different story. I’ll be starting at $0 again and my cancer treatments will be significantly more expensive (with less coverage) than everything I’ve needed thus far. I’m/We’re going to need all the help we can get.
If you are able and would like to assist financially, myself and my family will be so so thankful. But please don’t put yourself out to do so. I know there have been many times I’ve wanted to help others and couldn’t do so because money was too tight. There are so many other ways to help: positive thoughts, prayers, good vibes, etc. Or my personal favorite: time spent together - come see me!
Thank you again for visiting my page! I appreciate your love and support whether you donate or not - I appreciate you!
Much Love - J xxx