Welcome to my Turning the Page on Cancer fundraising page!
Just shy of my 40th birthday I was diagnosed with Stage IV Metastatic Breast Cancer. That winter I went through my first round of chemo and with the help a hormone therapy drug was given a few years of relative stability until the efficacy of that drug wore off. Now I'm going through another round of chemo. I walk with a cane and have constant pain in my hips and back. I'm hoping to make it to my 44th birthday and beyond because I have three little girls who really need me and a husband I am not ready to share quite yet (or ever if we are being honest).
From the METAvivor website:
“100% of breast cancer deaths occur because of metastasis, and almost 100% of people whose breast cancer has metastasized will die from it. In the United States alone, this means that more than 40,000 vibrant lives are lost each year.
Despite these stark realities, the popular breast cancer fundraising movements give on average only 2-5% of their research funds to researching metastasis. Instead, their primary focus is on prevention, which does nothing to help those already diagnosed, and early detection, which does not impact those facing the ultimate death sentence of stage 4 breast cancer. And while only 6% - 10% of initial breast cancer diagnoses are metastatic, 30% of patients diagnosed with earlier stage breast cancer will eventually develop stage 4 breast cancer and die.”
When I heard about this Read-A-Thon I thought that it was exactly the sort of thing I wanted to do. No pink ribbons. No useless t-shirts or bracelets or stuff cluttering up your house. No awareness campaigns – because really, is there anyone out there who isn't aware of breast cancer at this point?
Another thing to think about: when money is put into research on metastatic breast cancer it benefits all metastatic cancers. The more answers the doctors have the more ways they can treat these terminal cancers and push them into the chronic illness category. We aren't even asking for a cure at this point, we just want to live longer. And for those of us with daughters we want to know that they don't have to go through what we are going through. I doubt I could have done more to prevent getting cancer – and those who know me are probably nodding their heads right now because I enjoyed living my life in an healthy & active fashion – but I still got stage 4 breast cancer with no previous history of it anywhere in my family. My biggest hope is that it starts and ends with me.
So join our fundraiser by participating – either by spending the day on October 20th reading books and spending time with your family or by donating to one of the many people who are participating. Turn away from the pink hype knowing that it isn't helping but that you can help by putting your money where it is really needed: into research for metastatic breast cancer.