My Story

Okay, here goes. Call me the Reluctant Blogger.

This site is being set up for our sweet friends to get information on my treatment. Thank you for your phone calls, e-mails, and visits. I hope this keeps you informed. Also, I sincerely hope you will use this to pray for us over the next few months. I'm not going to be bashful in asking for prayers!


Oh, my gosh! I just glanced over in the margin of this site and saw "Read the caring tributes in honor of Debbie". Let me tell you. I will be hacked if none of you write a caring tribute to me! And remember, it's "in honor of" . . . not "in memory of".

Okay, here's the info:

I found the cancer myself in mid January. I actually thought it was nothing more than fibrocystic tissue. You can imagine my surprise when the doctor said she was concerned and sent me for a mammogram. It took an agonizing 2 weeks to get the final report, but it is malignant.

After talking to wonderful doctors at both Baylor Hospital and UT Southwestern, I've decided to go into a clinical study at UT Southwestern. It was a hard decision because I really liked every doctor I met. It's unbelieveable how caring the doctors and staff are who deal every day with cancer patients. I don't know how they do it. I would be in the worst mood if I were in that profession. (Instead I married Bill and had five kids so that I could always be cranky!)

Anyway, it is a neoadjuvant therapy which simply means that I will have chemo before surgery to remove the tumor. The chemo will last 6 months. Depending on which arm (or group) I'm randomly put in, I could have chemo once every three weeks for 12 weeks and then once a week for 12 weeks (Arm 1), or just the opposite (Arm 2). I'm waiting now to find out which arm I'll be in. Bill and I can't plan our social calendar until I know how often I have to go for chemo.

Here is the info on the cancer the best I can explain it: (In my life, I never dreamed I'd know this much about breast cancer!)

It is a stage II invasive ductal carcinoma. It measures 2.5 cm (may be a little larger). The breast MRI showed no invasion of the nodes. I tested Estrogen (72%) and progesterone (7%) positive. I also tested high for Her2/neu. It's because I'm "lucky" enough to have all three positives that I can go into this trial study. This study is out of MD Anderson in Houston and the previous two phases have yielded very good results. I am hoping for a lumpectomy at the end.

So that's it. Now for prayer requests.

Please pray for the final tests that I will be taking this week before starting chemo. I will have the port put in on Monday. Then, I should start chemo on Wednesday or Thursday. I'm dreading every bit of it.

I actually have an overall peace about the chemo, but when I allow myself to think ahead, I start feeling a little panic. So, please pray that there will be no more anxiety.

Please continue to keep Bill and my children in your prayers. I think this is probably harder for them than it is for me. At least I can take a good book and read while I'm receiving treatment. They have to just sit and wonder. I will say, though, it's been nice hearing from my boys so often. Kady has always been good about calling (obviously, she's a girl!), but the boys are a little more "reluctant" to check in. If I had known this would get them to put me in their speed dials, I probably would have used this sooner! (I am a big believer in parenting by guilt.)

Finally, it probably goes without saying, but please pray for complete healing. Pray that God would wipe out every last cancer cell.

God is faithful and I have no doubt that His plan is to draw us closer to Him as He walks our family through this ordeal. I'm sure His plan is actually bigger than that, but for now, I am dependent on His Spirit to get me through each day. And I am dependent on the prayers of our friends. Thank you.

I hope this brings you up to date on what feels like, for me, a complete out-of-body happening. All the best, Debbie


Bill Dunlap posted a new journal entry.

Life is good.  College football started this weekend!This is the week that I start my trek to surgery and eradicating this tumor, also.  Top that with the fact that our ... Read more

Bill Dunlap posted a new journal entry.

Life is good.  College football started this weekend!This is the week that I start my trek to surgery and eradicating this tumor, also.  Top that with the fact that our ... Read more

Claire Jas signed Debbie's Guestbook.

Hi Debbie, Just dropping in to say hello and check on you; I hope all is still going well for you and your family.  I still keep you in my prayers and think of you ... Read more

Jan Conlin McAlister signed Debbie's Guestbook.

Debbie and Bill,      Congratulations on your son's engagement to Elizabeth. She and my daughter Jenna, were best friends at Mandeville High School.  Jenna went to ... Read more

Alan PROMOLAD Dean signed Debbie's Guestbook.

Precious Debbie- This is one of those times when words just don't properly express how grateful I am for you and Bill's life crossing paths with mine. Your victorious walk ... Read more

Susan Jarrett signed Debbie's Guestbook.

Wow, Debbie--one of the best years of your life. That's remarkable! So thankful you can end this chapter, but I'm going to miss you coming into my home every few days and ... Read more

Kim Galindo signed Debbie's Guestbook.

Debbie...We are praising our wonderful Father for all He has done, all His is doing, and ALL HE WILL DO!!!  He has so much for you...plans for your blessing beyond ... Read more

Lynda Zeringue signed Debbie's Guestbook.

God bless you and your family and I thank Him for your continued healing.  Here's looking forward to October 2010 when we greet each other at our 40th reunion!  Lynda ... Read more

Claire Jas signed Debbie's Guestbook.

Dear Debbie, I am so glad to have the communication with you during the past year and even happier to know that you are doing so well.  I will, however, miss your ... Read more

Brenda Brown signed Debbie's Guestbook.

I slipped up to Adam and Amy's computer in League City to check my email and had the wonderful Christmas pleasure of reading your beautiful thoughts.  You are an ... Read more

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