The Grey Bandits
Hi and welcome to My Personal Page!
I’m part of the movement to end brain tumours and I hope you’ll join me in this Canada-wide effort to put a stop to this disease.
I have been living with Stage IV Metastatic Breast Cancer since August 2015. I was diagnosed with Breast Cancer in March 2012 and after a successful treatment regime of 15 months, I was cancer free...or so I thought!
In August 2015, I was diagnosed with Stage IV Metastatic Breast Cancer, the cancer had metastasized to the brain. Needless to say, I was shocked and angry but determined to get the best treatment and stay positive. Everything was happening so fast, tests, numerous Dr.'s appointments and surgery. I had a craniotomy in September 2015, surgery was successful and I was home within 72 hours. I was back to work within 2 months. All was great. I was back on track, and being monitored very carefully with follow up CT Scans every 3 months.
In April 2017, my CT Scan showed NED (No Evidence of Disease) I was thrilled!
But, in June 2017 something wasn't right, headaches were fast and furious and I was questioning my last CT Scan results from April. I asked my Neurologist to have a look and sure enough, there was another tumour. There had been a HUGE mistake with my last CT Scan. The Radiology Dr. made a mistake, he was looking at a previous CT Scan.
On June 28 2017 I underwent a second craniotomy, I thought the first was a piece of cake! No literally, I had no idea that this 2nd one was going to put me on my butt! My recovery took much longer and before I knew it, after my surgery I had moved from Montreal to Ottawa. All I can say is thank god for my family, I could not have done this without all their love and support. It took a good 4/5 months before I gained back all my strength. My energy level was very limited. My brain wanted to go, go, go (like really) but the surgery sucked the energy right out of me. I started a new regime of meds, this time it was oral chemotherapy targeted specifically to prevent brain tumors. Ok...drugs to keep the tumours away...no biggy....people take meds every day to control their disease.
By Spring 2018, I felt strong and ready to go back to work and move forward. I was now having MRI's every 3 months since June 2017. My last MRI in June 2018 showed that I was NED...YAY....My Neurologist said "Next MRI will now be every 6 months since I've had a clean year. A sigh of relief, the meds were working....I can't even explain how happy we all were.
In August, my husband got a job offer in Calgary, lots to think about, but we were so excited and happy! With lots of conversations with my team of Dr.'s, I got all of their approvals for the move. We were saying "Calgary...here we come"!
A new city came with a new team of Dr.'s. With all my medical charts in hand, I met my new Oncologist in January. She is labelled the "Rockstar of Metastatic Breast Cancer", I knew I was in good hands! She scheduled a series of tests which is the norm along with my 6 month follow up MRI.
January 23.......the day from HELL........ my husband and I walked into the Dr.'s office full of confidence. The news wasn't good, we never wanted to hear "you have more brain tumours" not 1 but 4.... stunned, pissed and angry to say the least. They said these tumours have been there and growing since my last MRI prior to moving....WHAT!!! I didn't believe them.... I wanted my team of DR.'s in Montreal to review the MRI. I wanted to get on a plane back to Montreal. All I remember saying was "OK....just tell me what I need to do"!
My team of Dr.'s in Montreal said there were NO tumors....my new Dr.'s said that there were tumours....what does one do? Who do you believe? The Dr.'s that have treated me since 2012 or my new Dr.'s.? I had a second MRI done and it showed no change, more Dr.'s viewed my MRI and came to the conclusion that indeed it was new disease and wasn’t post op scar tissue that my Dr.'s in Montreal were claiming.
After much thought, on February 27, 2019 I underwent Stereotactic Radiosurgery to hopefully kill the 4 tumours. I will have a follow up MRI in May to see the progress but the MRI for August will be much clearer. I am feeling good.
I am positive and strong and I know I will conquer this horrible disease once again. I refuse to let it take away my happiness or my spirit!
On June 1st 2019 I will be walking with my Team "The Grey Bandits". This will be my 2nd year walking.
By signing up for a Brain Tumour Walk, I’m making a commitment to help end brain tumours and to help provide the essential information and support that every person diagnosed deserves.
All money raised through Brain Tumour Walk events strengthens the national movement to end this life-changing disease and brings hope to individuals and families across the country:
Hope for progress in discovering the cause of brain tumours.
Hope for better treatments for every child and adult diagnosed.
And most of all, the hope for a cure.
Thank you for supporting me, and more importantly, for helping the 55,000 Canadians who live with a brain tumour today.
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