The Cost for the Cure

I was diagnosed with breast cancer in November of 2013. I had mentally prepared for that moment most of my life, because my Mother also had breast cancer. We were both diagnosed at the age of 51. She lost her battle at 58. I don't plan on following in those footsteps. They told me I had "Metaplastic Carcinoma" and a unique type of breast cancer called "triple-negative"...sounded good to me! Don't results labeled "negative" indicate good news?..well, not in this case. I was informed that this type limits their treatment options, it is very aggressive and has a high rate of recurring. I knew I had to put my warrior gear on and prepare for battle...the battle literally for my life. Their suggested immediate treatment was a mastectomy, and..it would be in my best interest to take them both. Umm..okay. "Whack em off!" Just prior to surgery, new images showed the tumor rapidly growing, and they now recommended chemo first. Unacceptable! I could not possibly mentally prepare for a harsh regimen of Adriamycin, Cytoxan and Taxol for four months with that THING in my body!! I begged them to remove the mass and I would do whatever they wanted after that. Thankfully, they did. I had a lumpectomy and a port inserted in December, and began my chemo three weeks later. Chemo was my biggest fear. I did not want those drugs to wear me down, and take from me my "fight". I wore funny wigs at each treatment, (dreadlocks, pippi long stocking, Marge Simpson, and for my finale, Wonder Woman). They brightened up the somber, clinical, treatment area, and my fellow fighters got a big kick out of it. To date, I've completed the surgery, four months of chemo and 30 rounds of radiation. In this moment, I am CANCER-FREE!!! Research shows it usually returns within the first three years.  I will beat it then, too!  I'd like to put the experience behind me, and only keep the positive effects it has had on my life...gratitude, courage, hope...however, even with insurance, the out of pocket costs are astronomical! I've heard it said that you can't put a price on a life..well, they've certainly put a price on saving one...and they keep piling up.  I am blessed with the second chance I've been given. The battle was my own to fight...but for the battle of paying for it, I need some help.  I appreciate you for taking time to read this.  I hope you and yours are blessed with good health.
Callie
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Organizer

Callie Parreco 
Organizer
Denver, CO
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