• Announcement,  Awesomeness,  Cancer,  Cardinal + Finch,  Dan,  Gifts,  Grandpa Don,  Honestly,  Leah

    Young Cancer Family Starts Gift Business – We Need Your Help!

    {Medical Update: Dan’s shoulder replacement surgery was successful! He is such a rock star; he was sent home the following morning. Like, 24 hours later–In a giant hospital t-shirt that said “get moving,” super tight scrub pants, and no shoes. Clearly, I was not prepared with an overnight bag. He started physical therapy after two weeks of resting and is driving, cooking, and managing his pain well. We are keeping a close watch on his edema for signs of infection but so far so good!}   I developed this little hobby of making gift boxes full of wonderful goodies. I pretended it was a real business and gave it a…

  • Announcement,  Flowers,  Grandpa Don,  Grieving,  Home,  Honestly,  Hope,  Illinois,  Life Lately,  Moving,  Scanxiety,  Washington

    We Are Moving (Again)

          In 14 days, we are moving to my dad’s house in Washington. We will also get another round of scan results. Honestly, I can’t figure out what I want to write about. I feel numb with exhaustion. The move wasn’t an easy decision. There were so many different layers to our choice. I still can’t exactly put into words the myriad of emotions I have had about it, back and forth, over the last six months. I still find myself shocked over and over again at how life is so unpredictable, for better or worse. We’d appreciate your thoughts and good vibes for the next two weeks.    

  • Announcement,  Anxiety,  Art,  Cancer,  Chicago,  Dan,  Doug,  Food,  Hospital Stays,  Lung Cancer,  Lung Cancer Community,  NSCLC,  PTSD,  Scanxiety

    Medical Update – Spring 2017

    The prelude to winter began with Dan’s hospitalization November 1st. I spent the day wrestling with my intuition that I needed a significant break–things were getting to be too much and I felt super fragile. I talked to the HR manager at work and decided to take a leave of absence for the month of November. I came home and told Dan, only to discover he was developing a fever. I needed to take him to the ER so my abrupt decision suddenly seemed genius. Honestly, I felt like I really couldn’t put a price on the relief I felt to not have to call in and get a shift…

  • Announcement,  Raine,  Travel

    Help Us Get to Disneyland!

    We have a FUNDMYTRAVEL account designated toward Raine’s FIRST trip to Disneyland and [hopefully!!!] our family trip ABROAD next Spring! BUT, we only have FORTY-EIGHT days left to fundraise for it. Donate $5 or more TODAY to help ease the financial burden of doing something so special and fun as a family! We want to enjoy our travels and not to worry about the stress of the cost. Our total at FUNDMYTRAVEL reads $490 but thanks to some snail mail donations, we have actually reached $900! We are HALFWAY there to our Disneyland goal. THANK YOU for helping and sharing!

  • Adenocarcinoma,  ALK,  Announcement,  Anxiety,  Cancer,  Chemotherapy,  Drink,  Dundee,  Flowers,  Lung Cancer,  Music,  Nature,  NSCLC,  Parenting,  Photos,  Quotes

    Medical Update & Announcement

    Hello, friends. I write to you this afternoon from my kitchen table with Sufjan Stevens playing and my laptop flanked by a glass of 2014 Giovanni and a small bowl of tiny blueberries from our yard. It’s not a bad June afternoon. Which reminds of one of Dan’s all time favorite songs… Dan is doing very well. We are 9 months post-diagnosis of stage IV lung cancer (metasticized NSCLC Adenocarcinoma) and feeling very grateful for his subsequent ALK genetic diagnosis because we feel gifted with more time than we would otherwise truly be running out of. We were given a family getaway to Sunriver Resort by Seeds of Hope and enjoyed a long…

  • Adenocarcinoma,  ALK,  Announcement,  Awesomeness,  Cancer,  Char,  Chemotherapy,  Dan,  Dr. Duffy,  Family,  Grateful,  Jim,  Joy,  Leah,  Lung Cancer,  Medical Jargon,  Metastasis,  NSCLC,  Optimism,  Photos,  Tumors

    Happy Friday (Great News!)

    The results are back and I bet you can guess by our celebratory selfie in the oncologist’s office that they are good! The MRI of his brain showed NO infection, NO clots, NO new tumors, and all lesions are confirmed necrotic–Dead. “Tumor necrosis” is the fancy medical term for that, and I feel like I want to carry a balloon around today with that written on it! What makes me even happier about this news is that there is also NO inflammation due to the necrosis. High five! The CT scan showed NO growth and NO new tumors. Double high five! Oh man. So relieved. Repeat MRI won’t be for…

  • Adenocarcinoma,  ALK,  Announcement,  Cancer,  Chemotherapy,  Dan,  Dr. Duffy,  Grateful,  Leah,  Lung Cancer,  Metastasis,  NSCLC,  Raine,  Tumors

    Our 3rd CT Scan

    Today we discussed the results of Dan’s 3rd CT scan with Dr. Duffy. To recap, the very first scan introduced us to NSCLC Adenocarcinoma in all its glory–to me, what looked like splotches of ink and dark blobs inside his chest. Our 2nd scan was the first scan to tell us if “IF” his initial chemotherapy rounds were providing effective treatment. We were pleased to discover –Yes! Dan’s tumors were either stable or reduced in size, including his primary tumor in the left lung. Of course, these are always the results we want to hear! The alternative would be that there are new tumors or existing tumors have grown. The week leading…

  • Adenocarcinoma,  ALK,  Announcement,  Anxiety,  Cancer,  Chemotherapy,  Dan,  Dr. Duffy,  Grateful,  Holidays,  Joy,  Leah,  Love,  Metastasis,  NSCLC,  Optimism,  Photos,  Tumors

    The Friday Before Christmas

      It is hard to believe that three months ago to this day, we were receiving the shocking news about Dan’s cancer. All we knew at that time was that it was considered stage 4 lung cancer because it had spread to his spine, lymph nodes, and brain. In a strange way, I don’t even feel like the same person who received that news. I took that hit. And I survived. We both did. I don’t suppose you ever go back to the person you were before. Today, at Dan’s 3rd chemotherapy infusion, I brought in sandwiches for lunch from Potbelly (Dan’s request) and I was concerned the odor might cause fellow…

  • Adenocarcinoma,  Announcement,  Cancer,  Carlton,  Lung Cancer Awareness Month,  NSCLC,  Special Events

    Shine A Light Tonight

    We are on for tonight! At 6 pm Pacific time, I will host a Shine a Light on Lung Cancer event. Please join us at Upper Park in Carlton, OR, or from the comfort of your own home. We will light candles and/or shine flashlights and share stories to raise awareness for lung cancer. It is also a chance to pay tribute to past, current, and future patients of lung cancer and their families and friends. If you have been affected by the struggle or loss of lung cancer, or just feel inclined to show support, please join us! Additional resources that will be provided at the event include: Lung…

  • Announcement,  Carlton,  Lung Cancer Awareness Month,  Special Events

    Shine A Light Event Rescheduled

    Hello, friends. In my last post, I decided to host a “Shine A Light” event of my own on Wednesday, November 26th at 6 p.m. Due to a change in Dan’s symptoms and treatment, we will be at St. Vincent’s tomorrow and I have to cancel. (An update post on him will be published soon…) I do wish to still have an event, so I am tentatively rescheduling it for 6 p.m. on Sunday, November 30th. (Better late than never!) We will know for certain after tests tomorrow, so I will have more details coming soon.