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Hello friends and family,
For those that may have been concerned for Kellee over the past couple of weeks, or are not totally aware of her illness, we wanted to create a way to make sure we keep you informed and update. As a caveat for anyone who does not know what is going on, before reading the following, know that she is doing well, has a great treatment plan, an amazing team of doctors, and she is going to be okay!
A few weeks ago, Kellee had a mammogram done due to a hard lump she found after she stopped breast feeding/pumping. The mammogram, ultrasound and MRI scan showed a large mass that had spread to the nearby lymph nodes. A biopsy confirmed the diagnosis of Invasive Ductal Carcinoma, Hormone positive and HER 2+ (otherwise known as Triple Positive). A week later, Kellee had a PET scan done which is a definitive test for visualizing if there is disease spread. Happy tears were shed when the PET scan showed no other spread of the disease.
Because the size of the tumor, spread to lymph nodes and HER2+, she will get chemotherapy first, then a double mastectomy, followed by radiation, followed by continuation of one of the chemo medications for a total of one year and 5 years of an oral hormone blocking medication. She is scheduled to start her first of six rounds of chemotherapy on Monday April 19th. She can anticipate some side effects but truly everyone is different. Some of the common expected effects are hair loss, fatigue, nausea, diarrhea, immune suppression and a variety of other possible side effects. Throughout chemo she plans to continue to try to work when possible and then will inevitably need to take some time off after her mastectomy. The good news is her work has been very supportive.
The positives that have already come out of this difficult situation is that Kellee is already very motivated to spread awareness around Breast Cancer- check your boobs and know your family history. Kellee is totally open to answering questions about these topics, don't hesitate to ask! In true Kellee fashion, she is already planning ahead and excited to have a whole new understanding for what her patients go through and the personal perspective she will have to contribute to her current research and clinical interest in childhood cancer survivorship and the long term physical and mental effects caused by cancer and treatment.
Kellee and Alex have already been showered with love and support and feel incredibly grateful for all of you. However, many people have been asking what they can do to help and continue to show their support for Kellee, Alex and Sander, and sometimes even when you want and appreciate support, it's hard to know what you want/need. I have come up with a list of suggestions that way people can feel helpful and supportive without Kellee having to worry about it.
As you all know by now, Kellee might be the best texter you know. Text her! It's a nice way for her to feel supported, even if she doesn't feel up to talking. Know that she is reading your texts and appreciates them, even if she doesn't respond. You can include funny videos, tell her what's going on in your life, send funny/cute dog and kid pics ect.
Send her your current BingeWorthy Netflix, Amazon Prime, HBO, and Hulu shows/movies. She might have some extra time on her hands and will need some good suggestions. Maybe even send ideas for shows/movies that Alex and Kel can watch together!
Kel loves books! Send her some good book ideas that she can enjoy sinking her teeth into! OR you can mail her a good book that you are done with- maybe write a little note in there for her to find.
Keeping a 9 month old entertained and engaged is a challenge to begin with, add in cancer, and it will probably get even trickier. Send any fun activity ideas, instagram accounts, kid Spotify playlists ect.
Send her a card. It's a nice way for her to know you are thinking about her. Treatment is long, so there is plenty of time to get one out to her. Her address is:
3476 S Santa Rosa Dr.
Salt Lake City, UT 84109
Gift card for Beans and Brews- There is a coffee shop near their house that they can walk to. Alex is going to need a lot of coffee to take care of Kel and Sander. And shockingly, Kellee is a coffee drinker now! If you go to their website and chose "shop", there is an option to purchase a gift card. Here is a link to their website. http://shop.beansandbrews.com/
Food- For now Kellee and Alex are feeling well supported on the food front. However, once Kellee has had her mastectomy, Instacart and DoorDash gift cards might come in handy! Here is the link to purchase Instacart gift card https://www.instacart.com/gift-cards.
Their recipient email is: firstname.lastname@example.org
Amazon Gift Cards- She can buy books on her kindle through Amazon Prime. IF she doesn't use it for books, there are plenty of good finds on Amazon that Kellee Alex and Sander could use it for instead.
*Please note that the donation box at the bottom of this page is not associated with donations to Kellee. It's associated with the Caring Bridge Website, and not necessary to keep Kellee's site going.