In December 2016, I was a healthy 51-year-old Mother of 2 grown children, Megan and Madison. I had been weightlifting regularly for over three years and was in the best shape of my life. I had taken a break from the gym, as is often recommended, to give my muscles a break. In a few short days I found myself getting winded while climbing the stairs at home.
I eventually saw my doctor, mostly because I felt winded while climbing stairs. I had no other symptoms. I was diagnosed with “walking” pneumonia. I received treatment and started feeling better. A few weeks passed. I was on a camping trip. Adam and I were hiking. I noticed I was winded, again. That evening, I was coughing a lot, and experienced pain while coughing. Sever pain. Laying on the floor, I can’t move, pain. In my back. We went to after hours, and again, I was diagnosed with pneumonia. I received treatment (again), felt better again. No worries.
A few more weeks passed. I returned to see my doctor. He ordered an X-ray and everything changed. In an instant.
The day was Wednesday December 21st. I was due to leave the following Saturday morning for a cross country road trip to visit my oldest daughter whom lives in Forestville, CA. On Thursday, I received a CT for chest, and Friday morning, I was with the pulmonologist. My best friend, Amy joined me. The doctor told me he had a lot of experience and knew that what he saw in the CT scan was lung cancer. He and my family physician agreed I should take my road trip.
I pulled up my bootstraps and put my big girl panties on. The entire energy for both visits with my girls changed. Now, I wasn’t going to just visit my daughters, I was delivering scary news – I have lung cancer. I had to be strong. I had to show I believe in hope. I knew no details about my condition but had confirmation of lung cancer.
On January 11th, 2017 I had surgery to install my port. The surgeon took a lymph node for biopsy. Later the next day, it was confirmed. I am stage 4 adenocarcinoma.
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