My health problems started last year in May when, after suffering through a month of bronchitis, I was diagnosed with pneumonia and heart failure and admitted to the hospital for three days. The stress on my heart resulted in a diagnosis of pulmonary hypertension which means my heart must work harder because of the weakness of my lungs. Prior to the pneumonia, I had a mild case of COPD but this new illness now has me dealing with severe emphysema. I was put on 3 liters of oxygen 24/7. I worked hard to exercise and build up my stamina so that I could gradually reduce the amount of oxygen I used. In August of 2017, I was able to get off of the oxygen completely. I started seeing a pulmonary cardiology specialist, after four months of various respiratory infections, and he placed me back on oxygen at night. In February of 2018, I was finally free of infections and starting to feel like myself again.
Then I had a routine mammogram where the tech noticed an abnormal discharge. The tech quickly notified the radiologist who authorized more diagnostic tests to be done. I was notified by the radiologist that day that a couple of the masses were more than likely cancerous and there were some calcifications which could also become cancerous. After several ultrasound biopsies and stereotactic biopsies, the diagnosis was confirmed. Invasive ductal carcinoma and ductal carcinoma in situ, Estrogen positive +3, Progesterone positive +3, and HER2 +3, which means that the cancer is fast-growing and fast-mutating. Within a week I was scheduled for sentinel lymph node biopsies and, fortunately, they were negative for cancer. I have now had surgery to implant a port to make lab draws and chemotherapy easier. I began my first chemo treatment last week. During the next year, I am facing chemotherapy, a lumpectomy, and radiation therapy. After all of this, I will continue with hormone therapy for five years. I will also finally begin the treatment for my emphysema in May.
I retired after 30 years working for the Federal Government. I have been driving for Uber and Lyft to supplement our income to help pay the bills but the effects of the drugs make that impossible for me to do right now. My husband, Michael, works for a computer consulting company but the work is on a project-by-project basis and work is not guaranteed.
This diagnosis is overwhelming and the prospect of the upcoming medical bills is daunting. It is hard to ask people for help, especially to ask for money. It is also embarrassing and I feel like I should not be in this position. But I have been told that, on this journey, I need to ask for help when it is needed and it is needed now. Any help you could provide will help me remain as stress-free as possible so I can concentrate on healing and getting better. Any donation, no matter what the amount, would be so greatly appreciated!
DonationsSee top donations
- Toby Rampa
- Bill Hamilton
- Anna Price
- Kevin Kennedy
#1 fundraising platform
More people start fundraisers on GoFundMe than on any other platform. Learn more
In the rare case something isn’t right, we will work with you to determine if misuse occurred. Learn more
Expert advice, 24/7
Contact us with your questions and we’ll answer, day or night. Learn more