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Liz’s Story

In the early morning hours of Sunday August 16, 2009, Liz received dreadful news from an emergency room doc:  you have cancer.

On Saturday, Liz had been enjoying a blustery summer day at the Iowa State Fair when she started to feel horrible abdominal pain.  As it continued and worsened, Liz's good friend Deb suggested a visit to the medical staff at the Fair. Those good folks recommended visiting the nearest emergency department. 

Liz had oldest daughter Lauren drive to the hospital, then she sent Lauren back to the Fair to pick up Maddy!   Liz assumed a couple of painkillers and she’d be out of there in a jiffy.  After a few tests became lengthy and more in depth, multiple blood draws, CT-scans and ultrasounds, the doctors told her kidney cancer had been detected.  Although they wanted to admit her, Liz - aside from the back pain - was feeling just fine and wanted to be home with her girls.  An appointment was made with the urologist for Monday morning (today).  

Liz met with the urologist and other doctors today, and is currently waiting for more information and guidance on next steps.  It's likely surgery will be scheduled for early next week. 

Liz is amazingly upbeat and her main focus this week is on getting Lauren successfully settled into her freshman dorm room at Iowa State (go Cyclones!), and helping Maddy get ready for the start of her senior year of high school next week (Go Rams!).

What can you do to help?  Pray, pray, pray right now friends!  Ask God for peace and calm for Liz, Lauren and Maddy.  Pray for wisdom for the physicians caring for her, for goodwill and patience from Liz's employer, and pray for the many healing and helping hands who will touch this beautiful woman in the coming days and months.

Please sign the guestbook to show your support for Liz.  She may not have time right now to read all your comments, but she will definitely read them all and I know will be encouraged by them.

Thanks for your love and support,
Mary Pat, Maggie, Kati, Lauren, Maddy and MMK

Latest Journal Update


Liz is doing great!  She came home on Wednesday night.  Once we got in the car from the hospital her first thought was of our mom and she asked me to drive her to Bishop Drumm in Johnston.  Really?  Not the mall or to work? Thinking it was the pain meds.....Lauren and I made sure she was serious and she was.  So I drove gingerly from Methodist Hospital to Bishop Drumm.  Mom was up in her wheel chair and waiting to go to the cafeteria. She got bright eyed at the sight of Liz who she hadn't seen in a few days since she was in the hospital.  Mom noticed Liz's neck bandage.(and the drain thingy hanging out was hard to miss) Liz mentioned that she had something taken out of her neck...just "a little surgery" mom.  Eventually mom asked the right questions and Liz shared the news with her.  Mom was sad but doesn't really have the means to communicate too well these days.  Mom is doing OK and today I shared the BEST news of all with her first.....

Liz is CANCER FREE.  The doctor gave us the pathology report today which said that the cancer was confined to the thyroid and they got it all.  It is not connected to the kidney cancer she had in 2009.  Hallelujah! 

The next step is to recover from surgery.  Then they will start a radioactive iodine treatment series in about 2 weeks.  This is a newish treatment which is an option instead of chemo and radiation.  The doctor was very positive about things and Liz is positive, upbeat and looking forward to kicking back and watching chick flicks with the girls and girlfriends all weekend!!!!

Thank you for your support!  What we have faced is minor compared to what so many others are facing today.  We are lucky to have great news.

Liz had cancer.  Cancer didn't have Liz.  (thanks Bandit)