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Amy Jeswilkowski Hastings
8/11/2017 Latest post:
Welcome to our CaringBridge website. We are using it to keep all our friends and family undated our journey over the next year! This inital post is long to detail the last month. As many of you are aware a diagnosis such a such as cancer or any other chronic disease becomes a family affair. I am so blessed to have so many prayer and spiritual warriors on my side during this adventure! I am grateful to each of you!
My story starts with a 3D mammogram that came back requiring additional investigation. An ultrasound, followed by a biopsy was preformed at St.Josephs Medical Center in Towson. June 12 it was confirmed to be breast cancer. Our appointment with the breast surgeon, June 14, provided insight to our healing path and choices that were available. To confirm our choices, we had a second opinion at John Hopkins and ultimately decided to proceed with treatments at St. Joseph's Medical Center.
Many people wish to know the details. My diagnosis was a triple negative breast cancer with a very aggressive growth pattern. It appears to be a Stage 2 and thankfully was not identified in the lymph nodes, which is positive news! The suggested therapy is chemo first, which I started on July 20. It is a total of 16 infusions over 20 weeks. Chemo will be followed by surgery and then potential radiationhrough the winter. Chemo is recommended first because it will help to ensure the cancer is responsive to the treatments and working systemically to make sure nothing is traveling to other places of the body. I have also undergone genetic testing to see if this is related to a history of family BRCA1.
The first treatment went relatively better than I had expected. While I had various options to help with nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, I made it through with no need!! Exhaustion has been the worst of the side effects... and soon hair loss. In order to prepare for inevitable Eliana, Adeline and my stylist Jessica gave me a beautiful new hair style on August 4!
Second treatment was August 3 and with the help of my amazing medical team, I am feeling great! Just tired! I also attribute my positive attitude and and overall wellbeing to my Army of warriors who are praying and lifting up my family during this time of need! I love you all and thank you for all th emails, text, gift cards, dinners, magazines, hats and more! This experience has made me humbled by the outpouring of love showering down on our family! This journey has allowed for amazing reconnections of friends and family. I know God has provided this as an opportunity to share my experience with others, to offer hope and show how faith will see us through!
My ask is that you continue to pray and keep in touch! While I may not always be able to respond, know I am alsways grateful for your words! In addition, please share with others the need to get annual mammograms and make sure to know your full family history! It could be a life saving practice for you, your children or other family members! I love you all and happy healthy living! God bless!