Linda Brown

First post: Feb 16, 2020 Latest post: Jul 29, 2020
Hello Family, Friends and Loved Ones All, 
            Some of you are already aware that Linda recently has been diagnosed with breast cancer, but we haven’t given out much so far with respect to details. This note isn’t intended to be a detailed medical analysis, but at this point we do have a reasonable understanding of what Linda is up against and what will be the probable course of treatment. Her biopsy shows two carcinogenic sites that will need attention. Fortunately a subsequent MRI indicates that there’s been no metastasis of the cancer and accordingly her survival chances are excellent. The cancer itself is rated as early stage two and is termed an invasive ductile carcinoma. Treatment will involve about 18 weeks of chemo, then surgery and then another 5 or 6 months of another round of chemo. This second round should be less severe than the first infusion, but no walk in the park either. The upshot of all this is pretty much a year of rough sledding.

            The onset of the cancer happened pretty suddenly, was initially discovered through self examination and we are told that this is an aggressive form. Of course that’s not good news, but the silver lining is that chemo works by attacking and killing cells that are dividing quickly. Since her cancer cells in fact are dividing rapidly, the chemo will find them more easily and hopefully kill all of them. As we know, the side effects of chemo result from the fact that there are other healthy cells in our bodies that also divide rapidly, and the chemo will kill them too. Hair is a good example of healthy cells that divide rapidly. There is a long list of side effects that can make for problems, but it’s hard to say how many of these will occur or how intense the effects will be for a given individual.  In the words of her surgeon, however, “this is a big deal.”

            I think Linda has a good outlook on all this and is going in strong. There will be some difficult times, but there also will be some important learning, and already she has received an outpouring of love and support. In that there is truth about our condition here on the planet; fragile beings who do feel a connection with each other and who are strong and resilient in a paradoxical contradiction to the fragility. In all of this there is God’s presence and the recognition that none of us are alone.

            Thanks for your prayers and support. I will try to stay up to date with news on how things are going. The next step is surgical implant of the chemo port this coming Friday.  Love // Stew

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