For those of you who know Alaine well, you know that asking her to talk (or write) about herself isn't really going to happen!
So here is what I know: The day after Brett, my brother, lost his job Alaine had her annual physical. They found a lump on her right breast and wanted to have it checked out with a mammogram. Alaine told me 20 minutes into that appointment she could tell that something wasn't right. They asked her to do a second scan and then an ultrasound. During this appointment, they talked about the irregularities and scheduled her for a biopsy a few days later. When the results came back cancerous, their lives instantly changed. The biopsy let them know,right away, that the cancer was both Estrogen and Progesterone positive, but they had to wait another 10 days to find out that Alaine’s HER2 protein was negative. This was a huge answer to prayer! Therefore, she was able to move forward with surgery before any other treatments. On March 3rd she had a successful double mastectomy. During surgery, the doctors had determined that her cancer had moved to the Lymph Nodes on the right side. Those infected lymph nodes were removed. When her pathology reports from surgery came back she found out that there was also a smaller but more aggressive cancerous tumor in her left breast tissue also.
Since the surgery, she has been recovering and fighting off two infections. Alaine was hoping to be able to start the next phase of her treatment program at the end of March but because of the infections she had to hold off. (This waiting has been tough)
Future plans: Alaine’s Oncologist, Dr. Bret Friday, has recommended two cycles of Chemotherapy. The first one is nicknamed A/C and is a 2 month cycle requiring infusions every other week. The survivors she met that have gone through this have called this treatment "the RED juice" or the "red devil" neither of which sound good. Even though it will be tough with unpleasant side effects, she knows it is ultimately healing for her body. The doctor told her it isn't a matter of ‘if’ she might lose her my hair, but only a matter of time. It typically is like clockwork, on day 7 or 8 of the treatment. To help ease this transition, Alaine recently got super cute short haircut. She plans on shaving her head before it starts coming out in clumps. To support her, Brett has a new hairdo, a bright pink Mohawk. With a stylist friend he is planning a “Fight with Alaine” and “ChopCancer” hair cutting party. (more details to come) Their pastor’s wife and Alaine’s good friend, Anne Johnson and Brett (her husband) will be shaving their heads, but you don’t have to go that far. Anelise, their spunky 6 year old, has also said many times that she wants to shave her head. We’ll see what happens there! The second phase of chemo is weekly infusions for three months. Once these two rounds of chemo are complete she will be doing radiation five days a week for five weeks.The final level of treatment will be hormone therapy for the next five years.
Please keep praying for Alaine! Over the past months she has had many good days, but also a few days where she feels down. She is grateful for her faith in the Lord Jesus and thankful for her many supportive friends and family members! I have heard her talk about how much they have loved on her and her family, and I have seen many examples of the love and care their family has received! After each visit to Essentia Health she tells me how she feel blessed and has been impressed by her treatment team.
Thank you for taking time to be informed about Alaine’s fight with cancer, and most importantly, thank you for the love and prayers given!
Alaine is holding tightlyto this verse:
“Do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”