Several friends/family have suggested starting a GoFundMe as a way for those who wish to show their love and support through a donation. There is no expectation to donate. Any donations received will go towards staying at the Rotary House which is the on-site hotel connected to the MD Anderson that provides the most comfortable and convenient accommodation during treatments. If you are looking for another way to send love and support, please comment in the Facebook page "NanEtte update for friends and family" at this link https://www.facebook.com/groups/1256817151003598/
Our Mom's Story
Starting in late 2015, our mom had a persistent cough. In Jan 2016, her gynecologist told her to go get an x-ray as she probably had pneumonia but the result was actually stage 3B non-small cell, non smoker lung cancer. Throughout her cancer journey, she has always (and continues to) taken immediate action and fought in every way she could. When she was diagnosed on a Friday morning, she was meeting with a cancer doctor on Friday afternoon scheduling her chemotherapy to start the following week. She was able to continue working full time as she went through several treatments. She started with 33 treatments of radiation to the lung alongside chemotherapy, then switched to immunotherapy. After that stopped working, she went back to chemo.
By Feb 2017, the cancer had spread to her brain. She was experiencing significant brain swelling. At the time, we blamed the symptoms on 'chemo-brain'. But luckily, our mom knows her body! Although she had a flight to catch for a grand 60th birthday party in Salt Lake City, she came to Houston focused on getting into Clinical Trials. The PET scan revealed an issue which required immediately brain tumor removal by craniotomy with five days of radiation. By May, another tumor had grown in a different part of the brain and they conducted a gamma knife radiosurgery procedure. While the recovery from these brain procedures was rough, mom did great and did not experience any significant long term side effects. Unfortunately, the cancer grew back and the recommendation became whole brain radiation which is known to have more serious side effects.
She is now is recovering from her whole brain radiation and many of the effects are expected to wear off over the next several weeks and months. The doctor's have explained that the cancer in the brain and the cancer in the body are two different ball games. One can be stable while the other is not. We've worked on stabilizing her brain cancer. And today her treatments are focused on the cancer in her body. She does have several spots throughout the lung, spine, liver, and lymph nodes. She did get on one clinical trail that worked briefly but stopped.
Today she is taking immunotherapy (Keytruda every 3 weeks) alongside radiation to a lymph node tumor for a short term and we are researching in conjunction with MD Anderson's team for which clinical trial she could get into next.
Many of you know we are staying at the Rotary House which is a hotel conveniently attached to the MD Anderson Cancer Hospital as part of the Texas Medical Center. MD Anderson is one of the best places in the country to receive cancer treatment. And the Rotary House has been a perfect home away from home during these treatments.
Thank you for reading our story. We really appreciate all the love and support we've received over the last two years.
*INSTRUCTIONS FOR HOW TO DONATE ANONYMOUSLY*
When you click "Donate Now" at the top right of this page, you'll be taken to the next page where it asks you for your information.
On the donation page, you'll be asked for an amount you want to donate. Then you'll be asked if you want to give a tip to the website GoFundMe (if you do not, just click the drop down menu and select Other and input 0).
When you enter your first and last name, you will have the option to "Hide name and comment from everyone but the organizer." By default, this is NOT checked and your donation will be PUBLIC. But if you would like, you may CHECK the box (a green check mark will appear as seen in this screenshot below) and now your donation will be ANONYMOUS to everyone except for the organizer.
If you have any questions or want to send words of support feel free to email me at [email redacted]
Amber, Austin, Mike & NanEtte Epperson