My journey - battling lymphoma

Recently I celebrated my 46th birthday. I love celebrating birthdays! Then I participated as a co-captain for our local "Quabog" Relay For Life and the Pack 57 Rocks! Cub Scout Team. This was the time frame that I had discovered an uneasiness in my stomach and growth in my spleen and stomach. After weeks of monitoring, my husband Steve took me to the doctor who felt the lumps and ordered a CT scan. The CT scan showed a massive area, my spleen enlarged to twice its size and an additional growth lower in my stomach. Next was the localized CT guided biopsy and subsequent PET scan. The biopsy showed positive for lymphoma and most likely Diffuse Large B-cell Lymphoma.

This is my online journal sharing my experience through battling this cancer that has abruptly entered my life for no apparent reason. The story is documented here if you want to start from the beginning, you can check the archives on the side bar.

As a top competitive master athlete this year winning my age group at the Marine Corps Marathon and placing 3rd in the New England Trail Running Championship I have been truly excited with my results of late and am a truly driven athlete. Driven by goals.... my goal right now.... to beat this "thing"!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Marking the Miles.... In Honor and In Memory

I have been fortunate to have 45 donors to date contribute to my American Cancer Society DetermiNation fundraising.  For the Boston marathon I had a list of people in memory and in honor and carried that list - naming a mile for each person -- the list came from my donors.  I have reached out to my donors asking them if they have anyone that they would like me to run in honor or in memory of and below is my list.  

Marking the miles with strength and love!
I will also be wearing my red cape and will have ribbons on the cape in memory & in honor of all these amazing people!  :)  This list will update as I receive names.....  :)  
In Memory
Mile 1 -  Louis Peck - my dad, he passed away after a heart attack at age 63. I miss my dad and find strength from his spirit and love!

Mile 2 -Charles N. Pilling Jr. and Irene M. Pilling.  They both died of Cancer.  Robin's father had Throat cancer and mother had ovarian, pancreatic and bone cancer. This is my great uncle & aunt (Robin Stoddard)  

Mile 3 - Sharon Popp - sister of Louise Popp & Robin Popp

Mile 4 - Mary Beth Reddell - my dear friend from American Airlines past away this June, she was a Hero of Hope and a true hero of mine as the American Airlines volunteer leader for more than 4 years.

Mile 5 - Kathy Doolan - cousin of Sandy McDonald who lost her battle this past February.

Mile 6 - Terry Zahn - Relay For Life Hall of Fame member.  The man who created the first Relay video and who truly had a vision for now the world's largest fundraising event supporting the mission of the American Cancer Society.  

Mile 7  - Nathaniel Kachadorian  - From on of my basketball players at WUHS - Kris Murner  - "He was good friend who gave me my first kiss and lost his battle at age 20.  His illness directly affected my studies in school where I majored in radiation oncology physics and interned at Norris Cotton at DHMC.  A patient interaction changed my career path-- where I realized how much I missed helping people directly--  and I walked away from a PhD acceptance at U of Wisconsin-Madison-- the top program in the country.  So I work with nursing schools now-- helping them ensure their students are achieving at the level they need to be in order to pass their boards. I never would have thought that this is what I would be doing- now.  I have visited with Nathaniel's parents over the years-- their musically gifted son was a treasure to me.  My oldest daughter, Sadie, shares his birthday...something not lost on any of us."  (Kris Murner)

Mile 18 - Jane Calvert's Mom

Mile 19 - Jeff Ross' Mom

Mile 21 - Jeanette's Mom & Dad (Douglas McKenna)

In Honor 
Mile 8 - MURIEL REDFERN & LOUIS REDFERN -Lynne's Dad had prostate cancer in 2002 but has been clear since the day before Derrick was born. Mom had lymphoma and continues to fight!  God bless You Everyday & may he guide you thru this marathon with his strength. I love you, Lynne

Mile 9 - Dario Quiles who is currently in treatmant for liver cancer, and Juanita Ocasio -hoping chemo will shrink tumor eoough to have surgery for breast cancer. (Sandy McDonald)

Mile 11 - Lynne Grazianno Morin - my dear friend who works for the Leukemia Lymphoma Society and I met when she worked at the American Cancer Society --- an amazing woman with an amazing story!  She helped me and has continued to be a support for me during this journey.  I credit her for recommending Dr. Sean Mullally - who is truly a god - send to me & my family!  

Mile 12 - Grampa Ray! 

Mile 13:  Pat Flynn

Mile 14: Phylecia Wilson

Mile 15: Lynne Peters

Mile 16: All the patients at the Dr Mullally & Rockwell oncology office

Mile 17 - Susan Silodor - my dear friend that I met more than 10 years ago working for the Colorado Division of the American Cancer Society.  She has been a true inspiration of strength to me.  An amazing cancer survivor!

Mile 20 - Bev Gross - A dear friend, volunteer I worked with in Colorado to bring Relay For Life to NorthWestern Colorado.  Amazing fighter and national volunteer turned staff person --- that keeps the fight alive!

Mile 22

Mile 23 - Betty Ma's Father

Mile 24 - Cara's Mom & Charlie's Mom !!!

Mile 25 - 26.2  - Me!   2010 Because I CAN!  

More to come!  :)


phylecia35 said...

Thank you, Nancy for dedicating Mile 14 in my honor. It is an honor for me to know you as a friend. I can't imagine how you are holding up to run a marathon in the midst of chemotherapy. Dick and I will be rooting for you. Way to go!!!


Joyce Pemberton said...

Hey Nancy...very very proud of you!!!!!!!
I didn't see the request for your donors to give you someone to run for, so it's too late to ask you to run for Bob...maybe next year! Go home and rest now girl!

Jane said...

Oh Nancy, it is so special to me that you ran mile 18 for my mom! Makes me cry, I still miss her so much. Thank you. I've been away from my computer for 5 days and cannot wait to catch up on how the race went. We prayed for you and cheered you on Sunday morning!!