On 01.02.02, I was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer. Too late for surgery, I had chemotherapy, which failed. In May the chemotherapy was changed and I was soon in remission which was celebrated and welcome and lasted nine years - until October 2011. There was progression in 2011 so more treatment was indicated and I am now back in partial remission. But I'm not only a cancer patient - I also enjoy my family, walk my dogs and am learning to draw and paint. Life is good!

Friday, June 08, 2007

I keep hoping

I just read this book, THE ANATOMY OF HOPE, by Jerome Groopman, for the second time. It's a subject dear to me. Eventually I learned that my original prognosis was measured in months -- five and a half years ago. So why am I alive? There are many factors. Good medicine for sure, the primary reason. I was lucky in treatment, both in having an oncologist who knew what was most likely to work and in the fact that his choice was spot on and proved to be even more effective than he imagined.

But I also believe there are other factors that aren't as measurable. I found treatment - every month for two years - from another physician who had made visualization one of his specialties. Each session we worked together to strengthen my immune system using the images that appeared from some deep place within my very soul. And that gave me hope. Hope, we now know, changes body chemistry. Some researchers believe that these changes give the immune system a better chance to fight disease. Sometimes this is the tipping point, just enough change that good things begin to happen.

This book is important to me for two reasons. I want to find ways to maintain hope within myself so that I can continue to survive this Stage 4 cancer that wasn't supposed to be surviveable. And I want to remind myself that each of us can offer hope -- true hope, not just platitudes -- to those we encounter who are also suffering.


  1. All I can say is that I am soooooo happy your original prognosis did not eventuate and that you are still with us today.

    My friend suffered cancer and came through the treatment only to find our that her dear husband was then diagnosed with a different type of cancer. She has the most positive attitude and I pray that all ends up well for both of them. I've sent the link for this post to her as I'm not sure if she knows of the book you mention and it sounds like it would be very beneficial. Thank you for sharing this ~

  2. What a wonderful testimony of hope you are!! I'm so glad to have found your blog and look forward to visiting you through it again and again!!
    Blessings and my prayers to you!


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