Rockin' the scarf look!

Valerie Schrader

First post: Aug 27, 2017 Latest post: May 2, 2018
Welcome to my CaringBridge website. We are using it to keep family and friends updated in one place. We appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement. Thank you for visiting, and we will be keeping the information current so we can share updates with everyone at the same time.

After not feeling well for quite awhile and thinking it must be this or that, I went to one doctor which led to another and so on and so on... On May 3rd, 2017 I got a call from the surgeon, the kind that stops you in your tracks:" I have the results of your biopsy, you have cancer... there will be chemotherapy...radiation...." those all became words on a page. The stage was set for more tests, I hung up the phone and just stared at those notes: what does this mean???

I will fill in bits and pieces as I reflect back in my journal writing but now we've jumped forward to 8/26/17 and I have not one but 2 cancers to fight and we're all a bit more optimistic with this. After major exploratory surgery it was determined that I do not have stage 4 - Praise God! So the 1st cancer will wait as we deal with Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma. That news was confirmed last Friday afternoon and the show went into high speed with a bone marrow biopsy on Monday, chest port placed on Tuesday, then blood work and heart function tests Wednesday to be able to show up Thursday morning for my first chemo infusion day at the Kaiser Chemo Spa!

As this journey began we thought we could keep it with family and friends and that we'd be able to handle things on our own. For a time that seemed to work but telling the story over and over again was slow and exhausting.  My real hesitation was and still is that I don't want to ever see any mention of my journey/ battle/ cancer adventure on social media or anything that would draw interest, attention or questions about "what's going on with Valerie"? This is a wonderful, safe place to stand with me, in community, encourage me, my wonderful husband Bill and my amazing family. As time goes by Bill and my daughter in law, Brooke Menconi will be co-authoring the site with me.

The plan is to update frequently and to journal for the sake of sharing with my family, especially my granddaughters and to reflect back on myself, how God has and will sustain us all through this; of that, I am confident! For this reason I'm asking that you use this site as a place to show love, encouragement, offer help.... be our friends and walk through this journey with me. With that said, my hand is extended - join me and let's explore the riches of God's grace together. As my kids said "Mom, you got this!!"

I will journal tomorrow. Thanks for reading this and coming on board. Love and Blessings to you all.  Valerie

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