My name is Nicole and I am a 37 year old Mom and Wife living in Raleigh, North Carolina. I have lived in New York most of my childhood and landed in the south by way of the military. I was a Paralegal Specialist for the United States Army from 2000-2003 and was stationed in South Korea and Virginia. After the military, I become a Paralegal for the Department of the Army as a Civilian Federal Employee and then as a Legal Technician for the EEOC.
I am married to my wonderful husband Jonathan. We were married in Las Vegas in June of 2015. We both brought children to our new marriage. I have a 14 year old daughter, Kaela, and Jon has two sons, Brandon, who is 16, and Adrian, who is 12. Life is never dull or boring in our house with 3 teenagers!
I was diagnosed with Stage IV Non Small Cell Lung Cancer on February 24, 2016 with mets to spine, pelvis and brain. I was on Tarceva, the targeted therapy, for 15 months until I just recently started progression and will be moved to the next line of targeted therapy, Tagrisso.
I worked my entire first year of diagnosis until it got to be too much for me. I was fatigued and overwhelmed. Life is too short to be stressed and I want to enjoy my life and not have to worry about anything else but enjoying the moments and being with the ones that I love.
I have found that the support on social media and online is a huge factor in how I have educated myself on our disease. I have met many lifelong friends and Survivor experts that I can rely on to help me in my times of need. Having someone that knows exactly what you are going through is so very important in this battle and I hope to help others as others have helped me! I am part of the Genomics of Young Lung Cancer study through the Addario Lung Cancer Foundation, I have attended the LUNGevity Hope Summit for the first time, and have become active with the Lung Cancer Initiative of North Carolina just recently. This past May, I was asked to be the Lung Cancer Survivor Voice at the Precision Medicine World Conference that was held at Duke. It was a great opportunity to get my voice out there and it was very well received. Getting involved, networking with others, always brings me hope and great information.