As I can best calcuate, my dates for chemotherapy treatment will be Dec. 26, Jan. 16, Feb. 6, Feb. 27, March 20 and April 10. My immunotherapy treatments will continue on this three-week basis for another 8 months, finishing in December of 2015.
My surgery will take place 3 weeks after chemotherapy ends. And radiation therapy will start 6 to 8 weeks after chemotherapy treatment ends.
There are too many unknowns about reconstruction to speculate but I think that the first phase will take place at the time of the mastectomy.
One last thing I’ve discovered in this process is that I don’t like being termed a “cancer patient” or a “chemo patient.” I’m a person who is dealing with cancer. I’m a person who has chosen to receive chemotherapy treatment. I suppose that’s why I’m not particularly a fan of pink ribbon wear or the walk for the cure. I don’t fault people who are. I just believe that it’s limiting to assume that every person who deals with breast cancer will handle it the same. To me, I’m not a diagnosis. So it’s odd to me to receive a gift that has a pink ribbon on it. Does that really represent who I am? Not at all. Likewise, the walks for the cure are a great way to raise money for research and for people to come together to celebrate as a whole, if they chose. To me, it’s a big crowd, with a search for a parking spot and a meandering pace. Personally, I’d rather make a donation, remember and honor those who have dealt with cancer in the past and in the present, then do something else I enjoy with my family. Like run a 5K. Go for a hike. Go snowshoeing. Or sleep in because I’m not working a race on a weekend morning. No offense intended to anyone who loves these things. They’re just not my things. I’ve done the race for the cure a number of times, in honor of my mom who had breast cancer almost 15 years ago and just celebrated her 83rd birthday.
I chose to not let cancer define me. I’m a giant list of all sorts of things before I had cancer and have faith that I will be many more after.