I've always been a bit of a health nut, and at 57, almost 58, I had never felt better. I had lost the 10 lbs that my holiday baking extravaganza had managed to creep on, ramped up my workouts, gave up sugar, dairy, legumes and grains. I was feeling pretty proud about my ability to stick to such a healthy regime. Beginning of March 2017, I started having what I thought were esophageal spasms. I did what most of us would do and began taking OTC remedies to help with acid reflux. As the weeks wore on and the symptoms continued, I decided to see my internist. She ordered an ultrasound of my gallbladder which revealed no abnormalities. We then decided to do an endoscopy (EGD) to see if there were spasms, an ulcer, or deterioration of my esophagus. The EGD showed a gastric ulcer with abnormal edges. The doctor took multiple samples to biopsy which revealed stage 4 gastric cancer. To say I was blindsided would be an understatement. Steve and I were both in a state of shock. From that point it became a whirlwind of ultrasounds, MRIs, Cat scans and biopsies. When all was said and done, the diagnosis has been confirmed: Stage 4 gastric cancer which had spread to adrenal glands, right lung, several lymph nodes, and a tumor somewhere around my upper back muscles. I was admitted to KU Med on Thursday March 30. Steve made the dreaded phone calls to our kids, family, and friends, and by Friday mid-afternoon the two older kids (Alyson and Elliot) had flown in from Oregon, Isaac came up from Lawrence, and my sister Lori drove in from St. Louis. Once we were all together we knew it was time to put a plan in place and we were going to fight this together. And so the journey begins...
I will be using this platform to keep those of you who are interested up to date, to express myself without judgment, to share my experiences as they unfold, and to provide you, my family and friends, opportunities to hear me, pray for our family, to rejoice in our successes, and to reach out to me/us with positive and nurturing encouragement.
If you'd like to help provide a meal or takeout for our family during this time, you can sign up at the following link: https://www.mealtrain.com/k9loyd
I want to continue to maintain a super clean diet, now more than ever, to help my body fight cancer and replenish from treatments, so please make sure to look at the foods that I am avoiding.