Wednesday, 5 March 2014

The Day That Changed Everything

As someone who has never blogged, or even been on facebook i thought this would be the perfect time to start as a way to keep my family and friends informed about my craptaculous "adventure" that i'm about to embark on! Ok, i don't know if i would say it's an adventure because it's not like i'm taking a trip around the world (although that would be much more ideal), but rather i have been diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer. I was initially diagnosed with stage 3a breast cancer two and a half years ago when i was 26 years old and although it was a hard diagnosis to get, there was a light at the end of the tunnel that made it so much more bearable because it was "curable". This time around, it's no longer curable but i'm optimistic with the advancements in oncology that i will have a long and happy life:)

To give a little bit of background i had been having extreme pain to my sternum that radiated to my back for a few months that seemed to get progressively worse. By boxing day i had had enough of the constant pain so i went to a walk in clinic. That was my first mistake. I mean i should have known since i always hated their lack of thoroughness, however, in my mind i already knew what was wrong with me and i was simply going to ask for a stronger NSAID as i had thought i had costochondritis. Sure enough that's what the walk in clinic doctor thought and he wrote me a script for exactly what i had asked for, perfect!

Fast forward another month and sure enough the pain was only getting worse. A little voice in my head knew that this was no longer normal, but honestly i didn't want to accept the possibility of what else it could be. I decided after many continuous nudges, from some lovely friends with the best intentions, to email my oncologist. Sure enough he speedily decided to do a CT and bone scan. That was clue #1 when he got me in within a week that life may not be as sweet and peachy as i had hoped.

The day after getting a bone scan i went to meet with my oncologist. When i went to check in the lady smiled, asked for my name, and asked who i had an appointment with. Now don't get me wrong this lady seemed like a nice, friendly person, however as a patient who was already stressed to the point of wanting to vomit she used a couple choice words that left me even more stressed. She gave me a paper and said, "you need to go get bloodwork". I looked at her and thought, oh this poor secretary is confused as i did bloodwork a week ago and why would i possibly need to do it again? I simply told her, "no that's done already and it was fine". She looked puzzled, looked at the paper, and said, "no, actually it's STAT bloodwork. It's because you're starting treatment". I looked at her and kind of felt pissed off and told her, "No, not that i know of". She handed me the requisition and that's when i truly knew the cancer was back, although i wasn't sure as to what extent. I wonder how often a simple interaction with someone where words are spoken that end up changing a person's life?? I walked to get my bloodwork and at this point i was on the verge of wanting to vomit, burst out crying, or pass out. As i looked around i once again realized everyone there was more than double my age. These people were all old enough to be grandparents, and there i was with my sweet bald hubby (Chris) who appeared to look more like the cancer patient than me. These people got to grow old, and in a way i was jealous of them. How the hell did  i get myself into this super crappy situation?? I never did drugs, don't drink, and eat healthy, and yet these were the cards i got dealt.

When we sat down with my lovely oncologist to discuss the results; i already knew. Firstly, if you have to get cancer he is the oncologist you want because he actually seems like he cares about his patients, and in that sense i feel very lucky. He went on to tell me that i had cancer in my sternum, however also in my left hip and T7 on my spine. Those other two locations were a complete and utter shock. That's when i burst out crying. I tried to keep it together, however the realization of the reality and the scope of this diagnosis sucked.  I really don't know how else to explain it, but to realize that i will need treatment for the rest of my life for an incurable disease is devastating. So after many days of being mad, sad, confused, and a speeding and parking ticket, i decided to pull it together as i felt i had had enough of feeling like a mess. So i have decided that i want to have fun and laugh everyday. I will no longer waste my time on things that don't matter to me, and i want to inform my other youngish (under 40) females about the reality of this disease and the importance of early detection and prevention because this is by no means only an old person's disease.

I will keep everyone posted on the ups and downs, and everything in between as my life unfolds!!

23 comments:

  1. You are so strong Judit! I wish you all the best, looking fwd to your updates <3

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  2. Judit thank you for starting this blog and sharing your story. All of your friends are praying for you and sending you lots of love.
    One of my favorite quotes is..
    “Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass...it's about learning to dance in the rain”.
    The cancer journey you are on is a long and difficult one, but you are brave, and you strong in spirit and will, you will come through this. I believe in you. And as your friend I will be here to encourage, love and support you every step of the way. Love Elaine

    "What Cancer Cannot Do"
    Cancer is so limited...
    It cannot cripple love.
    It cannot shatter hope.
    It cannot corrode faith.
    It cannot eat away peace.
    It cannot destroy confidence.
    It cannot kill friendship.
    It cannot shut out memories.
    It cannot silence courage.
    It cannot reduce eternal life.
    It cannot quench the Spirit.
    Author: Unknown



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  3. Judit, thank you for sharing with us. I believe in you and please know I am here thinking of you every day. I love the quote that Elaine posted, and that will be my prayer for you. Will look forward to when you are feeling up for dinner with the girls and having some laughs together. You are a strong, courageous, amazing woman:)

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  4. Judit, you truly are an amazing, strong woman! Thank you for sharing your experience with us. We are all there for you and thinking of you everyday!! PS your friend Elaine said it all best, <3

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  5. Ps. you mean the world to me!

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  6. I miss seeing your beautiful smiling face!!!!!!
    You are an amazing, strong, courageous woman. I will be thinking of you and praying for a miracle. Wishing I could give you a BIG hug right now!

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  7. Judit, you are my hero! As an awesome nurse, a good friend, a fashion icon ;) and a remarkable woman! Thinking of you and sending all good vibes your way. And, FYI, you totally rock a bald head!

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  8. Oh, Judit! I am shoked by such turn of events! You definetely don't deserve this tough "adventure". Will keep you in my prayers.... will look forward to hearing that you are feeling better.

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  9. Judit, you are so incredibly strong and courageous! This cancer obviously doesn't know who it's f*!%ing with! You are in my thoughts and prayers. ((Hugs))

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  10. You should watch this I know you can beat cancer stay strong!! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gWLrfNJICeM

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  11. Hey Judit, thinking of you during this difficult time. Sending love and good wishes your way xo

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  12. Thank you for sharing your journey, Judit. You are an amazing woman and your strength is inspiring! Please know that I am here for you and you are in my thoughts and prayers. *hugs*

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  13. Just reading your blog Judit, I know you're going to be ok. Live Love Laugh. BIG hugs from Montreal. xxx

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  14. I have started to go through Judit withdrawal at work as in working hard on days together by nagging, laughing, being "inspired", criticizing and getting to know eachother. Thank you for opening up to everyone about this. Although maybe you are old because you are not on facebook hehhe just kidding.
    I miss you Judit and would love to see you soon when you are feeling up to it. I could use a good laugh session
    And if you feel like you need to start drinking... I have non-alcoholic Baileys that we can put in our coffee and pretend!
    We are all here for you if you need anything!
    xoxoxoxox
    Amanda

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  15. I admire your strength and determination Judit! You go girl!

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  16. To the beautiful and inspiring Judit, I have never met anyone so full of life. You do not deserve this, you do not belong in this place... Despite all of that I believe in you, with my whole heart. I just know your going to do amazing things, you already have! I am thinking of you and sending all my support your way.

    " Though she be but little, she is Fierce!"

    I'll Second with Tiffany on that one... You go girl!

    Kim Thrasher

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  17. Judit when I read this quote I saw your face.
    "Courage does not always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, 'I will try again tomorrow." -Mary Anne Radmacher.
    I believe in you. If there is anyone who can beat this thing you can.

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  18. I have been trying to think of something witty and inspirational for a week, but nothing has come to me. This f*cking sucks (not the most mature or intelligent response). I want to be a part of your craptuclous adventure...just as long as it doesn't involve getting pink ribbons tattooed on our faces.

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  19. Wow! Is all I can say. Thank you for sharing your story Judit! I don't even have words to express how courageous you are. You writing resonates! My thoughts and prayers are with you! Big Hugs!!
    Ruza

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  20. Just returned to work after finally shedding my buddy Salmonella. THIS is not what I expected to hear when asking others what was new with people! BTW, if you wanted a change of pace, you should have picked Salmonella :-) But, since you didn't have a choice, and THIS is your experience, I'll give up and the least I could do is try the fishhead soup! ;-) Appreciate your comment about not wanting to waste any time on things that don't matter to you, and definately think you should KILL ALL the 'BELLS'! Thinking of you Judit, and will follow your journey in all of your humour and wit, inspiration, heart, rawness, honesty, and courage...

    Kelly

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