My name is Laura Gladu. This is the story of my personal growth while living with breast cancer for almost 6 years.
In June of 2014, after nine years of mammograms at age 49, I felt a painful pop during my exam. A biopsy revealed hormone positive IDC Stage 1, Grade 2 breast tumor, 1.5 cm. While the diagnosis was shocking, I chose to trust God and not fear.
I prayed and researched. After weeks devouring books, making phone calls, watching a docu-series, and purchasing a program from a surgeon who healed her breast cancer alternatively, I felt confident to pursue holistic healing methods. Meeting with a surgeon, I shared my findings of other possibilities, but was curtly dismissed.
Before cancer even hit, I had other chronic illnesses for 10 years. Since I’d had five non-cancer related surgeries in seven years, two being unsuccessful, I didn’t feel peace pursuing surgery. My immune system wasn’t strong and I didn’t want to rush into anything.
My husband was very supportive. Each night we prayed over the tumor and what was going on in our hearts. We have three beautiful children ages, 17, 15 and 12. Our parents are deceased and we don’t have family nearby. I’ve been slowly building a support team, as studies show women without support don’t do as well.
Knowing nutrition and lifestyle changes were necessary, I attended a two-week immersion program in North Carolina in August 2014. After that, I saw a doctor in Wisconsin, but treatment was $18,000 plus $500 a month. This was in addition to more costs related to my other health problems! This was unaffordable.
June of 2015--While trying to find another less expensive local doctor, I did a one-month intensive home program with a doctor in California.
March of 2016--I had my first PET scan. The tumor had only grown from 1.5 cm to 1-2 cm.
October 2018--I had another PET Scan. Now 4 years in, the tumor doubled, but still hadn’t metastasized. I met with a different surgeon, but still came away convinced traditional surgery was not the path for me.
June 2019--I felt an enlarged lymph node - the cancer had metastasized. I was working on the emotional and spiritual roots of cancer, which are often overlooked. In my case, this was likely contributing to the difficulty in overcoming. Even though I'd been working almost every day for 5 1/2 years through various means and modalities to beat the cancer, the cancer was stronger than what I could do for myself. I felt a tension between doing things to stop the cancer and resting in God. Despite my physical weakness, I was becoming stronger emotionally and spiritually than ever before.
November 2019-- I became excited to learn about a non-invasive surgery in NYC with which I finally felt confident. A month later, the surgeon told me my tumor was too big to operate on and advised not to have anyone operate on it or the cancer would spread! That was a bombshell. I wish I would've known about this surgery early on, but I'm not sure that the spiritual and emotional healing would have taken place if things had been done differently. Only God knows for certain what path cancer will take.
The NY surgeon told me that I needed to get on chemo or radiation to shrink the tumor and then he would re-consider. I met with an oncologist Dec 13th and had a PET scan Dec 17th which showed spots on my spine. Christmas Eve, I had a biopsy on my C4 vertebrae and two days later received the news that the cancer had progressed to Stage IV metastatic breast cancer.
The song My Life Lord is Yours to Control came to mind. Total surrender to the Lord changes everything. I discovered there is no end to His sustaining grace, and His love knows no bounds! I prayed at the beginning of 2019 that I would experience a deeper intimacy with my Savior Jesus Christ, and God answered that prayer beyond my highest expectations!
January 2020--I started taking three medications with the hope of shrinking the cancer so that I could have the surgery in NYC. Obviously, the Coronavirus pandemic has put that option on hold, but I am still taking the medications. I would like to build my immune system and make progress on other health issues which have plagued me for 15 years.
It’s been a lonely path, as I’m sure any cancer patient would attest to regardless of their choice of treatment. I continue to learn dependence on God, seeking grace for His strength to be perfected in my weakness. Most of all I am resting in His love. I have a longing for what is most important now. As I have been blessed by the Lord, I desire to help others know these precious truths.
When things seem darkest, that’s when the glory of the Lord shines brightest and that is my goal in 2020. Romans 15:13 says “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may ABOUND in hope.”
The greatest news is Jesus paid for all my sin and in Him there is no condemnation! Knowing this in my heart as well as in my head has made all the difference, but it has been a process getting there! Sorrows and disappointments can be very transforming, if surrendered to the Lord! Sometimes you have to be prepared to die in order to really know how to live. I’m here on earth to bring God glory! I get to be a part of God’s greater plan and there is a bigger picture here than we see.
April 2020--I believe this journey will continue to be rewarding and fruitful and I’d like to invite you join me in the challenge as I can’t accomplish this alone. Your donations will afford me the time and energy I need to heal. Ongoing expenses include but are not limited to: nutrition, supplements, herbs, medical equipment, consultations with local practitioners, testing and treatments and/or possibly attending Hope4Cancer clinic in Mexico. I believe I have the best opportunity to heal by combining approaches. COVID19 and the side effects of the medications have impacted my progress, but I am still pressing forward! Please feel free to email me if you would like to know more specifics about how your donations will help me be successful.
I have vision for a bright and hopeful future of service, believing I have a purpose and a calling no matter what the circumstances say! I’m excited to build relationships with some of you that I have never even met before, knowing that it will take a team effort to help me get well. I am partnering with God and you to work very hard on all aspects of becoming whole: physical, spiritual, mental and emotional. I look forward to investing in you too, as I have truly come to see life with others as a partnership.
I know that not everyone can give financially, but I sincerely appreciate your prayers, and I will look forward to updating you as to my progress. I would love it if you would share my story with others!
A little bit more about me:
Veteran: Served in Guam and Korea in naval military intelligence (1985-1989)
Missions: Short-term missionary teacher to Brazil (1999-2000); Church missions trip to Tanzania (2018)
Education and hobbies: Bible college graduate; French horn player and vocalist.
Vocation: Christian wife and mother
Please see my Youtube story:
To follow my spiritual and emotional growth, my blog:
(There is also a separate page on my blog where you can find a more detailed version of my story, with quotes from my friends and family.)
For medical updates, CaringBridge website: https://www.caringbridge.org/visit/gladurin4lauragladu