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Please pray for my friend Kathy (Katbirdmom). She found out yesterday a tumor they removed to biopsy is malignant. She will see a doctor tomorrow to discuss treatment options.
Please pray for Kathy, her husband & 2 girls, ages 13 & 12 (tomorrow). A special request for her dd to have a special birthday tomorrow while her mom is dealing with this. Also for her parents and the doctors. Thanks.
If you'd like to send a card, PM me & I will send you my address so you can send cards for her.
Lori, so very sorry to hear. As a volunteer for Coles Foundation, it is so upsetting to hear of another person dealing with the cancer monster. May God surround Kathy and her family with His amazing grace, love, mercy, peace and incredible healing. Sending special warm wishes for the birthday girl.
Please keep us updated and do let us know if Kathy has a caringbridge or carepages site.
Thanks, ladies. She is thinking of starting a blog & I mentioned doing a Caring bridge or care page. I'll let you know so you can follow along. She is trusting the Lord through all of this. Today is her doctor's appt. to discuss treatment options. I can remember the day I went with my MIL & FIL to his first appt. to discuss this same thing (except his was bladder cancer). There is so much info you get all at once so a friend will go with her to be an extra set of ears.
This is the update from a friend on Kathy's treatment plan. I saw her today & she looks good & is taking this one day at a time.
At this point the next step is for Kathy to get an MRI, hopefully at the end of next week or beginning of the following week. The doctor is still awaiting some of the pathology results. She basically explained the two options, a lumpectomy followed by radiation and chemo or a mastectomy followed by chemo. After the MRI, Kathy will know if a lumpectomy is an option for sure or not.
At this time please continue to pray for continued peace for Kathy and her family and that her MRI will be scheduled quickly. Please add her to as many prayer groups as you know of! Encouraging words and knowing that people are praying is the best medicine right now!
She is overwhelmed knowing people are praying for her all over the country! Feel free to share this with your prayer groups. Thanks.
Lori, thank you so much. 2 other friends & I had a little surprise party for her dd & it went off without a hitch. The friend who went with Kathy to the dr. opened her home for us to do this. Her kids got things ready there. Another friend had the girls while mom was at the doctor & just took them to the first friends house to meet their mom. That was the story, at least. The dd was SO happy & so surprised! It was wonderful. The girls all eventually went out to play (of the 4 moms, there is one son---and 9 daughters, plus a step-daughter!) & we moms were able to have some time with Kathy. The Lord really blessed us with a special time and i"m hoping we can do things like that (with just moms) more often for her. OKay, for us, too! We all homeschool, so mom time is NEEDED, but now more than ever.
Lori, I just saw on your blog that you are a veterinarian. Kathy loves animals. She says she has a zoo at her house. Right now she has "just" 2 dogs & about 4 or 5 cats, I think. She used to also have birds & fish (one freshwater tank & one salt water). Her older dd is like a walking encyclopedia of animals. She loves most animals, though she & her mom's poodle, well, let's just say the dd suggested the get rid of little Molly & get a new pet! LOL! Molly is 14, I think, and showing a hint of getting old, but not too badly. She's a typical mini-poodle, but smaller than one I had growing up, who lived nearly 18 years. I think that's neat that you have a love for animals in common with Kathy.
It's nice to know that we do have this in common. I pray for Kathy and her family at least once a day. I know that it helps.... I just know that it does and I can't pray for everyone.... I feel that I need to say who and why and feel it. I often write in cards to clients who's pets I've had to put to sleep that I will pray for them. And I do it right then in the moment. I learned from 2 very good friends that you can pray whenever you want to wherever you are.... Not just on bended knee with palms together... So I do that. I just take a private moment with God and pray. I do pray that Kathy is doing well and that only a lumpectomy and chemo are needed.
Take care, Lori
Update: Katbirdmom may be able to get some insurance that will cover her. Premiums are high (extremely). This would cover her whole family for all health needs. There is another option that might help with expenses. Really, unless you have a great insurance plan or are very wealthy, this kind of thing is a financial strain on top of all the other types of strains it brings. The hardest part is she can't get an MRI until she knows which source will be used. With insurance and other sources, they have you use certain doctors, need referrals, etc., so that needs to be cleared up ASAP & is dragging out.
Today she had a thermographic scan done. I'm not familiar with these but she said they are less invasive & no radiation is used. According to it the only non-healthy thing is a possible ear infection. Go figure! She wants to get the MRI done to compare the 2. It could be the Lord's healing, but it would be nice to get affirmation.
I'm a breast cancer survivor, and want you to let Kathy know that I'll be praying for her & her family. I was diagnosed Sept. 2001, and my girls were just about the same ages as her girls are!! Only I have a son also, who was just 9 at the time!
So, here I am 8 1/2 yrs later... I had a lumpectomy (it was my left breast), then chemo & radiation. Thank God we live just 45 minutes away from Boston, where there is top-notch medical care. Also, we had good insurance.
I'd love to help Kathy out. Can u give me her address, and tell me a little more about her?
Also ,I need to tell you about a WONDERFUL organization called "ChemoAngels" which is a great resource for anyone dealing with cancer. Check it out at chemoangels.com . it is really easy, and very supportive. I've been an Angel for a couple of yrs now... I get so much out of it... and the best thing is, those going thru cancer are helped so much! Check it out for your friend!!!
Hope to hear from you!! XO
Ladies, please continue the prayers for Kathy. She finally got a call back from the doctor with her detailed lab results from the biopsy. We knew it was cancer & that there is cancer still in her. What we didn't know was if she would need chemo or just radiation. We also didn't know what was feeding the cancer cells.
The cells are NOT hormone positive. That means they do not feed on hormones. Kathy thought that could have been an issue & turns out it isn't so that's good.
However, there are 2 proteins involved that she is positive for. Now, I have not been through this and have NO CLUE what this means exactly. BUT, I do know what it means will have to happen. The first protein requires a medicine that Kathy will need to take for about a year. This protein result showed that it is highly sensitive to the medicine, which means she will have good results with this medicine. Without the medicine, the survival rate for this is lower than with other types of cancer. That was a little scary in & of itself. The other protein is one I know even less about. What I DO know is that a normal reading on that protein is 6-7% and hers is 78%. It sounded like it meant the cells could be reproducing at a higher rate than was thought.
All of this also means she WILL have chemo. It will be 4, 6, or 8 treatments.
The big hold up now is waiting to see if she is insurable, and if so, will her pre-existing cancer be covered. The insurance itself will be sky high, but the total cost for a year would still be less than paying out of pocket for this. There is no money for all this, so pray that God will provide somehow, some way. THere is a reduced cost program they could apply for but it would mean not being able to keep the doctor she has.
She also did something really major today. Her hair was about 3 feet long. She didn't want to lose all that in the hopes we can have a wig made. So, she got it cut. It's cut about shoulder length but her hair turned out to be curly so it bounces up & is just darling! I will have to get a good picture of her hair to show you. That was emotional, of course.
Needless to say she needs prayer warriors! Please do keep her in your prayers. THank you!
Oh my! What a lovely and touching surprise! I had no idea that this thread was here, and I am so appreciative for the lovely comments and supportive prayers. I am so truly blessed to be surrounded by loving, caring friends both near and far. Sincere thanks to each of you for your prayers and well wishes. I am touched beyond words.
Kathy got good news on Monday. The MRI shows that the cancer is localized in one breast so she can have a lumpectomy vs. mastectomy. The doctor is supporting the lumpectomy, followed by chemo, then radiation, then a year of IV medicine called Herceptin, which costs about $60,000 for a year's treatment.
It looks like she WILL be able to get group coverage (in which case, at least here in Texas, maybe U.S.) they cannot exclude you for pre-existing conditions. PLEASE PRAY this will go through! The premiums are outrageously expensive, but less than the Herceptin!
I've been looking at hats for her (plus I need to see if we can have a wig made of her hair she had cut off---3 ponytails that are nearly 3' long each & then she has one very thick ponytail that's probably 1.5' long). I found this one & told her I dared her to wear it. It is really keeping us laughing. I have volunteered to do her make-up like the mannequin as well. What do you think? LOL!
My dh says she needs this last one. He & she have a very funny teasing friendship.
URGENT prayer need: Kathy got insurance paperwork turned in & the people handling the stuff got the papers. She had everything ready to go before the end of March & they could not get their act together until last week! NOW, they have still not drafted her premium NOR does she have any kind of temporary i.d. to use!
She found doctors in Houston who specialize in the her2neu protein that is the big problem here so will get to see both the oncologist and surgeon next Thursday.
PLEASE PRAY FOR HER INSURANCE INFO TO COME THROUGH! Thanks!
Another major "hiccup" in insurance just surfaced. Kathy has the paperwork she submitted and they have the papers to draft her bank account. SHE has done what needs to be done. I wasn't in the room when she was telling what happened, so someone filled me in. I hope I am sharing this accurately.
When Kathy applied through this group in March, Blue Cross Blue Shield was going to be the insurance company used. When it was discovered BCBS was insuring this group at lower rates than other groups, they pulled out & would not take on any more customers. So, the group looked around & picked United Health Group. Now UHG won't pick up the group as they said they would b/c apparently there are legal actions being taken against BCBS for pulling out. It's a nightmare.
Kathy IS going to Houston this week to see the doctors. She will leave today & see the doctors tomorrow. Lots of prayer needed!
Kathy went to Houston on Wednesday to see doctors about her cancer.She saw an oncologist, Dr. Osborne, a surgeon, Dr. Coselli, and they sent her to also see a plastic surgeon, Dr. Baldwin, to discuss options. Both ladies (a friend went with her) have shared that the doctors were VERY friendly, very encouraging, and very informative. They were patient and kind. The plastic surgeon even stayed after hours to wait for Kathy! In addition, they were able to run some more tests and get her registered for surgery, plus do pre-op bloodwork and chest x-ray. The doctors discovered there was more cancer than what the doctor here had told Kathy. There was actually a 2nd type of ductal carcinoma (in situ) that was on all 4 sides of the cell that was removed here in San Antonio. In addition, they discovered a line of malignant cells spreading beyond this. Because of this the doctor will do a MASTECTOMY rather than a lumpectomy, and she will need both chemo and radiation to ensure the cancer is gone. The doctor said they will CURE this cancer. Both the doctors and a friend who is a radiologist told her that the Herceptin, the medicine she will need because her cancer is protein positive (Her2neu protein) is a "miracle drug" and will eradicate anything that might be left in there.
She'll have surgery on May 10th, then go for a 2 week post-op visit & see when chemo will start. She'll have 2 types of chemo. One will be 4 treatments, once every other week, then a 2nd round once every 3 weeks. The Herceptin will start along with this. Radiation will follow that. We aren't sure if she'll go to Houston for all the chemo/radiation or do it here in San Antonio. She will then have reconstructive surgery in Houston when radiation is done.
No news on insurance. She knows God will provide. We aren't sure what method He'll use, but He will provide!