There are 155,000 people estimated to be living with metastatic breast cancer. Some were diagnosed Stage 4 from the start, while some like me were diagnosed earlier with a lower stage (0-3) and then were diagnosed years (sometimes decades) later as having had the cancer spread. Just for a comparison, that’s more that the population of each of these cities: Salem, OR; Cape Coral, FL; Sioux Falls, SD; Springfield, MA; Rockford, IL; Salinas, CA; Kansas City, KS; Syracuse, NY; Dayton, OH; Alexandria, VA; Savannah, GA; Clarksville, TN; New Haven, CT; Sterling Heights, MI; West Valley City, UT; Killeen, TX; or Charleston, SC. If the metastatic breast cancer community were an actual city, it would fall at #150 by population size in the 2010 census. And those are just estimates. No database exists with actual numbers; we are not counted by SEER if we are diagnosed with an earlier stage and then metastasize.
Many of us that have been touched by breast cancer have been writing this month. We’ve covered a ton of topics, from being grateful to the Susan G. Komen Foundation to PTSD to Pinktober’s marketing flood to mastectomy and the choices in reconstruction to metastasis to the varying types of breast cancer. I’ve linked a few of my favorites for you.
The one recurring theme that we all have touched on this month is this: MORE RESEARCH IS NEEDED FOR / ON STAGE 4 PATIENTS – THE ONLY ONES THAT WILL DIE FROM THIS DISEASE.
Mainstream media wants you to believe that metastatic breast cancer is now a chronic disease, similar to diabetes. I didn’t know you lost your hair when you take insulin. Or maybe it’s like more like migraines, I mean there are days I’m just stuck in bed… but there’s no medication that can prevent metastasis – I was on it for over 3 years and am still metastatic – only a variety of medications with varying side effects that attempt to stop the cancer from growing.
Today is the end of Pinktober. We put all the pink merchandise away to be sold next year. The NFL has stopped wearing pink, as if breast cancer goes away, and fined DeAngelo Williams for not following their ridiculous policy. For me, and the other 155,000 men and women living in constant treatment, breast cancer doesn’t go away. I’m still taking the meds I was taking September 30, hoping that I get another 2-3 years on this medicine before it fails like the past three I’ve been on. Praying for more research to find another medicine or medicine combo that will actually poison and kill the cancer cells without poisoning and killing Andi. Praising God that my husband has stuck by me these past 8 years of cancer-land. Blessed by the family and friends who remain by my side, supporting me.
Thanks to all of you who stopped by to read my blog, and have started following me. My topics will continue to range all over the map, because my life is More Than Cancer.