Julie Yantes

First post: Jan 13, 2022 Latest post: Sep 22, 2023
Hi there. Here is a back story to my story.  My birthday (November 13, 2021) weekend was spent at a girlfriend’s house in Lake Havasu City, Arizona.  We enjoyed the outdoors, the sunshine, the weather, friendship and all the things that bring me joy.  It was a great weekend and I felt normal and awesome.  I returned home on November 16, 2021.

I went back to work, doing my normal thing.  On November 19th, I had a regular routine doctor visit, a few meds were adjusted, no big deal.  Things were fine.  A week and a half later, I started developing severe stomach pains.  I thought it was the new medication.  This turned into lab work that indicated my liver enzymes were elevated to the point where I started developing jaundice and turning yellow.   I was directed to have more bloodwork, scans, and an MRI which brought me to December 15th with a tentative diagnosis that it was "highly likely" that I had pancreatic cancer.  It was unreal.

On December 21st, I had an endoscopy with a stent and a biopsy to confirm their suspicions, which sadly were confirmed with a formal diagnosis of Pancreatic Cancer.

On December 23rd, the pain had not subsided and was also getting worse.  I canceled my day at work (before Christmas mind you) and ended up going to the ER.  I was then admitted to Methodist Hospital.  They diagnosed me with pancreatitis which is very painful and I started developing the collection of fluid in my abdomen.  Once settled into my room, I was allowed an ice chip an hour.  I could not tolerate any food or liquids as it caused even more pain and discomfort.  During the next 16 days in the hospital, it was a series of labs, scans, tests, and the DREADED ng feeding tube (made me gag and was horrible - so out that came).  I eventually ended up on TPN (liquid overnight feeding system) as I still cannot have anything orally, liquid or food.  

Of course, knowing me, you know I made the best of the Christmas and New Years Celebrations with the staff,  I appreciate everyone who has been reaching out to me during this time and if I couldn't respond to your text/well wishes, know that I did receive them.   Thank you for your continued prayers and support as I figure this journey out.  I loved the very limited visits I could have (one person per day) and the cards, flowers, texts, new pajamas, blankets, etc. that were brought/dropped off to me.  You guys are the BEST!  I know and I feel that I am very loved.

I stayed for 16 days being monitored/controlled for pain and was discharged home on January 8th.  Coming home I was apprehensive as I didn't know what/is to come.  Being someone who is so independent, now having to lean on my "Cancer Crew" is a new chapter in my life.  With your help, I know I can make it through this.

Right now, as of today (Janurary 11th, 2022) I am gathering information and filling my "whiteboard" with information.  This includes gathering treatment information, visits with oncology, surgeons, scans, labs, the liquid feedings, learning everything that I can right now.  It is overwhelming to say the least.  

So......moving forward I intend on doing my best to update this page with my thoughts, feelings, treatment plans and for those that have been saying "what can I do," know that I will reach out as I figure it out.

For now, keep the prayers rolling.  For those of you who have been asking "what can I do for you" I hope to get back to you with my new needs, that are unknown at this time, but know that I appreciate each and every offer that has been extended to be of help.