It's been two weeks since my first IV of Abraxane. My doctor gave me the week off so I could fly to see my son's college basketball game and celebrate my mom's 83rd birthday. I feel fabulous because, at the moment, I am totally chemo-free.
Alas, tomorrow is another day, and I will begin an IV of Abraxane every week for the next three months without breaks. My doctor only gives one get-out-of-jail-free pass, and I used mine the second week. How does a person gear up to feel like crap? You can't. You just have to suck it up and barrel through it, which is what I plan to do.
Friends and friends-of-friends have given me recommendations for about six wig shops and, of course, everyone thinks theirs is the best. What do I know? Basically nothing when it comes to wigs. I'm the kind of person who is neurotically thorough, however. Now that I know there are six wig shops, all purported to be the best, I cannot stop myself from going to every one.
But, once I do chemo tomorrow, I know I will not have the energy to go on the wacky wig adventure trail. I've been so nervous because I know I only have two weeks before I will be bald! Yikes.
Here come my Circlettes to the rescue (moms I met when we all had daughters in preschool together...unbelievable friends). They just called me here in Cleveland to say that they have been to all six wig shops and have narrowed it down to two. They made an appointment to take me to the shops on Sunday.
Who gets this lucky? Thank you, God. So here I go, feet to the fire tomorrow.
I know that the work my foundation is doing to raise money for research to find a non-toxic alternative to chemotherapy will come in my lifetime. I believe that with focused funding we can turn cancer into a chronic disease that we can live with and not die from. I know that I have made headway for my daughter's generation, so that fewer and fewer women will hear the words, "you have cancer."
More and more, I see life as a series of baby steps. Whether it's parenting, or scientific and medical breakthroughs, success comes with time. The time is NOW with cancer. Breakthroughs are happening every day. We must keep the faith, live in the NOW and actively pursue the end of this dreadful disease. Future generations will reap the benefits from those of us who are in the fight!
Noreen Fraser is living with Stage IV metastatic breast cancer. She is co-founder of STAND UP TO CANCER and co-produced the TV show, which raised 100 million dollars for cancer research. Noreen went on to create the Noreen Fraser Foundation to raise money and awareness for women's cancer research. The 'Men for Women Now' program enlists men to ask the women they love to make appointments for their mammogram and pap smear. Noreen can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org