Kitchen Sink

I’m not going to sugar coat this. Yesterday was a hard day. Yesterday I found out that I will need chemo and radiation.

It sucks. It is obviously not what I wanted to hear. BUT it is ok. I had my pity party yesterday and I woke up this morning ready to fight.

I’m not mad. I’m not asking God “why me”? Because I truly believe that because of my situation I will be able to help others. My nurse Norma with tears in her eyes told me yesterday that she is so glad I always kept up with my checks. She said if I would had done what society and doctors tell us and come in at 35 or even 40 this would had been real bad. I love her. She’s my hero. But you guys this is what I’m telling you. Please don’t wait till your older to start checking yourself.

A sweet sonographer, Alicia, messaged me on Instagram a couple days ago. She was talking about how hard it is when she screens someone and knows that they will be told they have cancer. AND she said they keep getting YOUNGER.

Ok I’ll get off my soapbox but I just needed to make the point yet again that young ladies and men need to be checking themselves and if possible go in for testing. Even if it’s just keeping up regular appointments with your gyno.

So back to yesterday. We waited for two hours in the waiting room. Talk about anxiety! Mine was thru the roof. Finally my name was called and my mom and dad followed me back to a room.

After a few minutes Norma and Dr Whitworth came in to see me. He said that if he was a betting man that he would bet it all on me being cured. He said that my prognosis is great. Awesome right?! Then came the dreaded “but”. He told me that they took 27 lymph nodes out. 5 of them had cancer. He said that there is no oncologist on this Earth that will look at my results and not say that I need chemo. He said they will want to throw the kitchen sink at me to make sure I am cured. He also said that he will want to do radiation therapy as well. This will come after the chemo. Not going to lie to you guys. I lost it. They will be doing 6 months of chemo, and then 6 weeks of radiation.

So there it is. Yesterday was hard. Really hard. I think the hardest part was telling Ray. He has been so amazing. He is also a liar because he told me he thinks I’ll be so cute bald. Okay Raymond! 😉

So now I’ll take it day by day. And I’ll be taking you guys on the journey with me. It’s a longer journey than I thought but I’ll be stronger in the end.

So many people have asked “what can I do”. Honestly the best thing you can do for me is to make sure YOU stay healthy. There is a charity that I mentioned in my first post that I am very fond of. It’s Christina Applegate’s charity called Right Action for Women. She raises money to help fund MRI’s for young high risk patients. If you want to help me, and you have an extra $5 laying around, that would be a great way to help me out. To help others. Also prayers. I truly believe in the power of prayer. And I have quite a few prayer warriors out there. I’m so lucky.

I got this.

Published by

tatatocancer

I was diagnosed with Stage IIIA Grade 2, HR/PR positive HER2 negative breast cancer at age 31. I am now NED!

93 thoughts on “Kitchen Sink”

  1. I believe the positive attitude you have will 100% be the reason you kick this! I sent your story to my 2 girlfriends who are dragging their feet (even after I got my mammogram and have a spot the doctor says “is probably nothing but we’ll check it in 6 months”) and told them to go already. Always praying for you Laura!

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      1. Hi,

        I currently have an aunt going threw cancer and we have found the cold caps are really working in helping to keep her hair. I know it seems like a smaller thing to worry about but its helped her still feel like her. Not many people know of them but its a small bit of info I can pass along. Prayer for you and this journey.

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      2. Hi,
        Yes she uses polar cold caps. There are also options that dont involve the dry ice if your hospital/chemo clinic offers it that you can ask about (they call it scalp cooling). Hers didnt so we went with the cold caps where we have to have dry ice delivered to the house before chemo days to get them to the correct temperature. The company is really great in answering any questions you have but i would be happy to answer any too. The Repunzal project also provides a list of all the cold cap companies but after some research we liked Polar the most.

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      3. Hi Laura (aka Bae) – I’ve listened to the Bobby Bones Shows for years and heard so many different stories about you and Ray. The latest adventures “will it uber” you’re always such a great sport. I have a whole new appreciation for you after reading your blog you’re truly one of my hero’s. You amazing, positive attitude and willingness to share your whole experience is truly phenomenal. Thank you for being an inspiration to all of us. My thoughts and prayers are with you and will look forward to hearing about the rest of your journey. Thanks so recommending Christina Applegate’s charity.

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      4. Yes it definitely kept her hair. Different chemos have different effects so you can experience some thinning but it really helps prevent having to lose your hair and helps it grow faster once treatment has finished.

        Liked by 1 person

      5. Sweet girl you are taking this bad boy down! I highly recommend shaving your hair, I found it so empowering! Once I sucked it up and realized it was going one way or the other. Writing about you journey will help others. I had a Youtube channel when I was diagnosed, so I used that to try and help others. There is a video of my head shaving celebration there, maybe it will help you make the decision. There is not much we can control, but we can chose to fight hard!!! Sending you tons of love and strength. ~Natalie

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    1. Laura,

      I am so sorry, please be careful with the chemo and radiation therapy, its an awful experience, and that is putting it lightly, most importantly stay positive through this journey and I truly believe that you will be a “champion of Hope”… and an inspiration to others to be mindful and pay attention to there bodies..

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  2. I told Marley last night that your attitude is so inspiring and I know God is going to use this for good and He clearly already is. I am going to go get a mammogram ASAP! Love you so much and we are praying hard for you!!!

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  3. Continue to fight the fight. You of course will have bad days but you will also have good ones. Chemo sucks, but you have the attitude and support to get you through it. Don’t be afraid to ask for help, doesn’t matter if it is just a hug. You totally got this. You got a Grandma in CA pulling for you and always has an ear or shoulder if needed.

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  4. You absolutely have this! As a self-professed cat lady, release your inner lion 🦁 Stay positive and know your army of support is there for you. Keeping you in my prayers.

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  5. Sorry to hear that you will need chemo and radiation! My pathology report was similar, they took 38 lymph nodes on my affected side and 6 on the other, one showed cancer so they recommended the same course of treatment! The silver lining is at the end we can be sure that we are cancer free and no free floating bad cells will be lingering! I’m fearful of losing my hair because I can hide my scars, but being bald forces me to acknowledge that yes, I am a cancer patient. But bald is beautiful and strong! Stay positive because this is just a quick speed bump on our road to Happiness!

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  6. Ugh, my heart just breaks for you. But you must be the most fierce woman I know. Listing to the show daily for all these years makes it feel like I actually know you-although I know I don’t. Your spirit is infectious and truly inspirational. Thank you for sharing your journey. I’m now doing regular checks on myself and will make sure to ask my Dr. on my regular visits. Also, each and every night when I put my son to sleep we pray for you. Pretty much anytime I’m stressed or filled with anxiousness I pray for you and the other few on my list- but you are at the top. Sending lots of hope and love your way!

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  7. You have got this. Kick this cancer in the booty. Keep strong and stay positive my friend. We will get you through this and you are always in my prayers. I’m here if you need anything.

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  8. Came to check on you, glad you have so many people supporting in person and us on the web.
    Your attitude is inspiring!
    We will keep you in our prayers and hopefully this treatment will go by quickly!
    💖

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  9. Positive Attitude is EVERYTHING! 2 years ago I was diagnosed with cervical cancer. I thought OK I’m 54 a complete hysterectomy, no big deal. I sat In the oncologist office & she looked me straight in the eye and said chemo and radiation. I made the worst face ever. But I rallied back. I have some strong “rocks” who got me through. You seem to have at least 1 in Ray. Lean on him. You will get through this. I’m cancer free by the way. Be Strong!!! You got this!!

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  10. I am so sorry to hear this, but I know you will beat it!!!! I am praying for you every single day. I feel like I know you and Ray even if it’s just from the radio.

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  11. Praying for you. Before you start radiation and chemo, please consider freezing some of your eggs. Not sure how those treatments will impact your fertility. I know your top focus is beating cancer, but you might want a baby one day ❤️

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  12. Don’t know you personally but your story touched my heart for many reasons. I am praying and will continue to pray for you and others currently fighting cancers butt!!

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  13. Your perspective on all this is so inspiring. My mom had triple negative breast cancer in one breast when she was 29 and in another when she was 41. She ended up having a double mastectomy and reconstruction before going through 12 rounds of chemo after the second diagnosis. I was with her through all that (helping empty those dreaded drains) and I saw just how much that process can knock a woman down. I’ve already had one biopsy of what turned out to be a fibroadenoma myself. I’m also a medical student, and I get so upset every time I read about the screening guidelines for women, especially women at increased risk due to family history, because I don’t believe they’re aggressive enough. I love that you’re putting the message out there to be familiar with your body and get checked as regularly as possible. It truly could save someone’s life.

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  14. I have to admit that I shed tears when I read your lastest. Our cancer journeys are similar, yet very different. We can and are making a difference by being transparent and vulnerable. This doesn’t come easy for strong independent women, but it’s bringing awareness to others. Through the pain, we smile the biggest when someone we’ve touched with our stories gets their screenings. Somehow it makes our pain powerful for a purpose. One day there will be a cure. We’re part of the team to make it reality. Stay strong! When you can’t be others will hold you up. You’ve got this!
    (My story is shared through FaceBook.)

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      1. My story from the diagnosis on 12/27/17 forward is in Facebook. I’ll send you a link from there. I’m sure some of it will make you smile today. Stay strong. You’re awesome!

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  15. I have an appt on Thursday. Of course I’m praying the tech just did a lousy job on the mammogram but I know that’s probably not the case. I’m so happy to have found your blog! I knew you were going thru rough times and really want to wish you all the best. I will be following to support you! Who knows, I may need your support too. Prayers for you!

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  16. We were both diagnosed around the same time. I am 44 and had my baseline mammogram that it showed up on. After having an MRI, they found another spot. They are both relatively small, so thankful for somewhat early detection. I am scheduled to have a lumpectomy on 4/13 followed by radiation and hormone therapy. Chemo will be determined after pathology and of course any lymph node involvement. I’m glad everything has relatively gone well for you so far. You got this!

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  17. I just made my mammogram appt! Doing it for you!! Love hearing about Ray & Bae on the show! Keeping you in my prayers!!
    💪🙎‍♀️

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  18. I’ve been in your shoes and it’s super scary. However; I am 7 years post triple positive breast cancer diagnosed at 36-literally 3 days after my bday-so there’s lots of hope. Like u I had positive nodes and I went thru chemo and radiation and lots of reconstruction. It sucks but I can tell from your posts you’re gonna get thru this. It’s tru what they say-what doesn’t kill u makes u stronger.

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  19. I just found your blog and your story is so similar to mine. I found a lump myself at age 32. My son was 7 months old at the time. I also had a bi-lateral mastectomy with reconstruction and chemo following that (18 rounds total over 6 different treatments). I was stage 2a (small lump in right breast with a little cancer in only one node- my sentinel node) and ER positive. I’m so sorry this happened to you. I am now three and a half years out from when they did my surgery and three years from when I finished chemo. I feel like myself again and stronger than ever. I wanted you to know I’m thinking about you and I know you are going to get through this with flying colors.

    I had no idea young women like us were getting breast cancer until I faced it head on. It is becoming more and more common. If you ever want to talk to someone whose been through the same thing please let me know. Sending you warm wishes for continued healing!

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    1. Thank you for reaching out Shannon. I’ll definitely want any and all advice with dealing with side effects of chemo. I’ll know more regarding the exact treatment after I meet with the oncologist Tuesday.

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  20. I just started following your journey, being a listener of the Bobby bones show. I am amazed by your strength, positivity and concern for others. Please know that you will be in my prayers. I am so thankful that they found it early. I can’t imagine what you are going through, but I pray that God gives you the strength and comfort you need for these upcoming months!!

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  21. I am inspired by your strength and positivity ❤️ As a listener to the BBS I know you have support and prayers from millions of people. I’m a mammographet and sonographer for 30 years. I have seen too many cases just like yours. I have seen firsthand the emotional effects it has but I can tell you that positive attitude and prayers will get you through this!! Remember that you are strong and beautiful always! All my love and prayers sent to you for the duration of your fight.

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  22. Oh no! I just saw this all today. As bad as it all is (and I’m sure I don’t even know the half of it) you got ahead of it and it’s so awesome you’ve been so vigilant about it all this time because most people aren’t. You make me want to get checked and do the same. I hope your story saves lives and I know it will.

    P.S. I hope you own this whole no hair thing. Screw wigs. Throw on a bandana and be proud to talk about your story. It’s so inspiring. Go you! 🙌🏼

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      1. Anytime! So question.. as someone with no history of cancer as far as I know, what would you recommend me asking my dr as a precautionary routine like you did? Regular ultrasounds, etc? Thanks for any suggestions.

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      2. I would talk to your obgyn and see what they suggest for you. Mammograms didn’t do much for me bc I have (or had haha) super dense tissue. So ultrasounds were the most helpful to me.

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      3. If you get a sec, check out my friend Emily’s story that was just published. She’s been trying to get the warning out there that those online genetics tests don’t always work at estimating your chance for cancer. Not really related to your story but a very informative piece. Thought you might find it interesting. Still rooting for you thru your upcoming chemo. You totally got this. https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/cancer-in-the-family/201712/are-over-the-counter-genetic-tests-risk-free

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  23. Praying for you Laura! Hate that you have to go through this but loving seeing that you are using your platform to encourage others and raise awareness!

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  24. Just saw Amy’s post and came to read your story. I am so sorry you’re going though this. You have definitely pushed me to want to be checked. I’m 34 and I have just felt off lately. Mine is more ovarian related. I don’t know the right things to ask the doctor and never want to sound like a hypochondriac when I go in and tell them to check me for all the cancers. But that’s really what I want to do.
    You will stay in my prayers. I wish for your complete healing and strength through this difficult time.

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  25. As a mammographer I see this sort of thing every day. It doesn’t get any easier. Thank you for being courageous and sharing your story to inspire others to get checked. Prayers to you for a speedy recovery!

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  26. Stay strong and positive. Your doing a great thing by bringing awareness to early detection. I’m about to be 30, so at my next yearly physical exam I will for sure as if and what extra testing I can get done. I’ll be praying for you, that you keep your positive spirit and courage to fight, and that the treatment is successful.

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  27. I was meaning to look up someone else on twitter and your name popped up in my search field (so I decided to look at your page to see what was new, as I knew a little of you from hearing Ray on the Bobby Bones show. I am sorry to hear of your diagnosis, but I am so inspired by your positive perspective dealing with this – I wish you the best in recovery and treatment. I also truly appreciate how active you are in spreading awareness. One question from one of your earlier posts – you said you get check ups twice a year – is that because you found the lump at 17 that you decided to go twice a year as opposed to once a year?

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    1. I’m glad you asked that! So over the years I kept getting lumps. So they just wanted me come twice a year. At one point after a biopsy about 4 years ago they told me I don’t have to come back unless I found another lump. Well I did. And so my every six months continued. Then my mom was diagnosed with Breast cancer and that’s when they told me I’d be basically always checked every 6 months. Now I’m so glad! I always kept up the appointments. 💕

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  28. The BTeam is sending lots of love and prayers to you! Thank you for being selfless and sharing your story with all of us. I had a very large cyst aspirated last summer and the past few weeks I’ve been having pain in my breast. I had been thinking it was because shark week was coming. After reading your blog I am making an appointment to get it checked out. I will continue to follow your journey and will be praying for you daily.

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  29. Praying for you, your family and friends. Love Dr. Whitworth! He’s a legend in this area and does amazing work! (I’m a Mammo Tech, so have seen his work first hand many times!) So sorry chemo and radiation must be part of your care plan…Aquaphor can help with any skin issues from radiation. It’s actually awesome for anything skin/wound related…provides a skin barrier and promotes healing. And chemo…well, you have to experience rain to find a rainbow. Lean on your “team” for support and know you have many prayer warriors behind you!

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    1. Thank you Melissa! I love Dr Whitworth. He’s amazing and so so kind. I appreciate your aquaphor tip!! I’m going to buy that now. If you think of anything else regarding chemo that helps let me know. I’m going to try the cold capping which I hear is no fun but sometimes works!

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  30. I just started reading your blog when Amy shared it. I’m so sorry for your diagnosis and all the awful crap that comes along with it!! I was diagnosed with breast cancer 2 years ago at the age of 30 so I know how life changing thst can be! The fact that you have a positive attitude and are sharing your story is the biggest thing you can do to beat this cancer!!

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      1. Please let me know if you’d like to chat at all! I’m active in many groups and have made it my mission to be an advocate to anyone who needs it, especially young women who are diagnosed ❤ It's kind of been a therapy for me.

        Liked by 1 person

  31. Your story is very inspiring and amazing positive attitude!! I was diagnosed with uterine cancer in January (no symptoms) and after a total hysterectomy, all is good. So very thankful for early detection and wonderful doctors. So important to stay on your yearly visits! Prayer warriors make a difference !!

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  32. Your attitude and bravery are inspiring! Thank you for sharing your story. I immediately did a “self check” while reading your posts (TMI?! 😛 ) ….I will be in constant prayer for you girl. ❤

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