Welcome to our CaringBridge website. We've created it to keep friends and family updated on Janice and her journey with multiple myeloma. Get started by reading the introduction to our website, My Story.
Visit often to read the latest journal entries, visit the photo gallery, and write us a note in our guestbook.
A little over ten years ago, I went to the doctor with stomach issues. After many tests, they discovered a blood clot in my abdomen. A blood thinner was prescribed to dissolve the clot. My doctor also said he wanted to do a bone marrow biopsy just as a precaution to check for a rare cancer called multiple myeloma. He thought the chances were slim but just wanted to rule it out to be safe.
A week later I sat in the doctors office and was told I had cancer. I was diagnosed with multiple myeloma, a disease for which there currently is no cure.
I was referred to an oncologist at Georgia Cancer Specialist and that is how my journey began.
I would learn that I was one of the lucky ones. My myeloma was "smoldering", which meant that while there was cancer in my bone marrow it was not active and my protein levels were very good.
I was told to go on with life as normal because I could remain smoldering for an extended period of time. I only needed to go in once a month to get a Zometa treatment to strengthen my bones. I had my blood tested once a month to make sure my levels were stable.
A few months ago that changed. My protein levels came back elevated. I was no longer smoldering. My cancer was active and I needed to begin treatment. For four years I sat along side chemo patients while receiving Zometa and thanked God every time that "that" was not me. Now I would be a chemo patient.
I began a four month regimen of chemo and drugs to treat the myeloma. The bright spot was that the chemo I needed at this point did not cause unbearable side effects or hair loss! :o)
My treatment began to work and my numbers improved. My doctors decided they wanted to harvest stems cells for a future stem cell transplant. My team recently decided that I should go ahead with a stem cell transplant. It will be my best shot for long term health and remission.
That is where my journey is today. On the 28th of October I begin shots and chemotherapy to prepare for a transplant. I will need to be in isolation for 21 days or more as my immune system will be severely compromised. On November 7th, I will receive the transplant and begin my journey back to health.
I am excited, hopeful and scared....but I know that I am in God's hands and in the prayers of all my friends and family. I will keep you all updated on my progress.