My name is Parker, and I want to ask your help and financial support in taking care of my Aunt Lynne as she begins her fight with breast cancer.
If you are reading this, then you already know what a wonderful, kind, and loving person she is.
She's not only my aunt, but she's my mom's identical twin sister. She's my mom's clone (Or my mom is her clone?). That makes our relationship even closer, even if it was sometimes confusing when I was growing up.
There is one time in particular where she helped me, saved me really, that I want to tell you about it before I explain why I'm asking for your help today.
How Lynne Saved my Wife
In November of 2015 my wife Natalie, fell and couldn't get up. I took her to the ER where they found she had a massive tumor in her Sacrum, that the doctors at the hospital thought was an aggressive form of cancer.
At the time I was a recent graduate with two young daughters (2 years, and 4 months), I had no idea what to do. The local doctors thought Natalie may die, or best-case, if the tumor turned out to be benign she would be paralyzed by it's removal. We were devastated.
What we didn't know, is that while we were dealing with the difficult prognosis, Lynne was talking to everyone she knew.... trying to find us help in any way she could.
Lynne found someone with a connection to the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. Before we knew it Natalie was admitted to the Mayo Clinic where she was being seen by literally two of the best surgeons in the world (for real, the best. Books have been written about these guys).
Natalie's surgery was in January on 2016, and she was up and walking the very next day.
Lynne's love and actions literally saved my wife's life, or at the very least, saved her from a life of permanent disability. My family is forever grateful to her.
After finding a lump in her breast two months ago Lynne scheduled a mammogram where they found a rapidly growing tumor. Initial biopsies were inconclusive, even the experts at Mayo weren't exactly sure of the tumor's type.
After many discussions, it was determined the best course of action was to remove the tumor. At this point it was growing daily, and had become extremely painful. When it was removed, the doctors found it had grown to the size of a softball in just a few short weeks.
Unfortunately during the surgery it was discovered the tumor had a blood supply, meaning it was most likely malignant. A fact made real by the pathology results that came back after the tumor was examined.
The type of tumor is still not exactly known. What she's experiencing is extremely rare, just .5% of breast cancers are this type. It appears to be an unusual form of sarcoma, meaning she doesn't have breast cancer per se, but rather a cancer that happens to be in her breast.
As I write this Lynne is scheduled to undergo a double mastectomy and reconstruction on Monday, the 23rd of April. What follows is unclear at this point, and depends on what's discovered during and after the surgery. Radiation, chemotherapy, and additional surgeries are all on the table at this point, and a full recovery will last until at least 2019.
The good news (the GREAT news), is that a recent CT scan showed no spreading of the cancer beyond her breast at this point.
A Strong Financial Foundation
When my wife was sick I was a stay-at-home dad, Natalie was our sole bread-winner. Her being out of work was terrifying, especially in the face of mounting medical bills. Lynne helped us when we needed it, and I want to pay her back, and pay it forward. I can't do it alone though, and I'm asking for your help.
We are asking because Lynne never would, but Natalie and I know first hand the financial difficulties that lie ahead for Lynne. The reality is that as of now, just 8-10 weeks after her initial diagnosis, she's already incurred over $5,500 in medical bills. We have been told the most expensive treatments are ahead of her, so we want to help her prepare for this, and not feel the strain and stress of financial burdens, which could affect her recovery in many ways.
Her annual out-of-pocket maximum is $5,500. What I am proposing today is $18,000 to cover her 2018 and 2019 out of pocket costs ($11,000), plus an additional $7,000 to cover the time off she'll be taking for her recovery (short term disability doesn't cover her full salary), and any incidental expenses that may not be covered by insurance.
Her new work has already been more than wonderful in accommodating her treatments. They've rallied around her and many of her colleagues have donated their own PTO time to her (one person donated a WHOLE WEEK!). What a fantastic place to work!
Will you please help?
I am posting this on Monday the 23rd, meaning that as you read this Lynne is undergoing her mastectomy right now.
My hope is that she'll wake up from her surgery today and find that we, her friends, family, and colleagues, have rallied around her. I know that together we can turn our love and support of Lynne into concrete action by creating a financial foundation that will reinforce and buttress her in this fight against such terrible disease.
So please give. ANY amount, no matter how small, is not only appreciated but makes a huge difference. Thanks for supporting my aunt. I love her so much, and I know that she will BEAT this cancer (beat the heck out of it!) with your help.
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