NED for me!!

Today is the day!  I hit my 5 year mark.  Today is the day after my last day of treatment 5 years ago.  I completed chemo and radiation on 7/25/2012.  What that means to me is that I hit a milestone I've been waiting for.  I went over to Seattle this afternoon to Swedish for my appointment with colo-rectal doc/surgeon Mindy H. and for the all clear.  I had gotten a CT on my chest and lungs (weird I know because I had anal cancer) but that was to follow up on some suspicious "spots" that I've had since my initial PET in 2012.  She told me the spots were stable, my lungs are fine, and after inspecting my darkest regions, THAT is perfect too.  I'm all clear.  Isn't that fantastic?  I'm super excited about it.  

I had stage 3a which means that one lymph node near the tumor was 1 cm (or larger).  Anyway, I've always been worried about the spots and the stage because if one lymph was affected there could be more later, or spreading, or worse go to my lungs or liver (I have spots on my liver too but they are likely the more common ones a lot of folks have and not concerning). I remember the first couple days after I heard I had cancer, I read an article that the statistic listed at the time (from stats in 2010 tests) for making it to the 5 year mark without a reoccurrence was only 40% for people who had stage 3a anal cancer   How depressing is that?  Yikes!  I quit reading stuff after that   And this was way before I found BFAC website.  Still, after all this time, that statistic stuck in the back of my mind and I continued to wonder.  I'm sure by now, someone has come up with a better, newer, and much more optimistic statistic regarding the various stages of anal cancer.  I sure hope they have.  And, if they have not, I hope that others will have hope when they know it's possible to come out of this alive and mostly well. <smile>

So, today was my big day.  Maybe I can relax just a tiny bit more now.  Or at least now I can find a different focus or milestone to work on.  This past week I've reflected a great deal about all that has happened in the past 5 years after my diagnosis and treatment.  I feel so fortunate.  I think my very first post in this blog was titled "Lucky Me" if I recall correctly, without looking  back, some things you just can't forget.  And boy oh boy was I lucky!    Completely dodged a bullet.  Beat the big "C".  Went the 5 years!  Yay me.  Yay you too.  Keep fighting.  

3 people sent you a hug.
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Omg this is such awesome news ! Congrats!!! Hope you go out to celebrate!!! Love NED at five years! I have three months to go till my five years. Just had precancer zapped. Hope that doesn't effect me getting to the five years. So happy for you!!!!!!! 😘❤️😘❤️😘❤️
Cathy likes this comment
You are getting so close! Stay strong and keep fighting. How's your puppy?? I haven't been on here for a year so I remember you got a cute little dog right after treatment.
Cathy, Cathy like this comment
Absoluetely great news! Must feel amazing!!
Cathy likes this comment
So amazing!!
Woohoo .... doing the happy dance for you. I hope you come back each anniversary and post an update to let us know that yes, there Is life after diagnosis ....

There totally is! I'm so happy to reach this milestone and wish the same for everyone. I feel super healthy and strong.
It's a great way to mark this anniversary. :-) This site has always been a wealth of information and support. I'm so grateful for it and all my support on here. Take care Kathee..... stay strong, be healthy!!
So good to hear from you. AND what wonderful news. Perfect Letters for your five year mark - NED. Enjoy the moment and the terrific feeling. Hugs Annabelle
Cathy likes this comment
Thanks Annabelle. Hope you are well. Take care. I've always appreciated your support and comments. :-)
Congratulations! I am so happy for you!! Celebrations are in order.
I also have had lung Spots, that are stable; we are watching.
How is your body at 5 years after? Do you have trouble with anything?
Did Dr H., say to continue checks or that's it?
Hugs Jean from WA
Well, as you know it's the new normal both mentally and physically. I have things that are different than 5 years ago for sure but it's not horrible. Here's the list; hips stilll not as flexible and they are sore, differences in dryness etc (vagina), some urgency from time to time with bowels, I worry more about health . Most of these have improved year over year a little. For the most part, I'm really good.
So HAPPY for you! Congratulations!!
Cathy, Cathy like this comment
Cathy, it's so great to hear from you, especially with such great news! Congratulations on hitting the very important milestone of 5 years NED! I am so, so happy for you! It makes me think back to when I hit that mark--what a great feeling it was! May you continue to enjoy NED forever. Take good care and drop in once in awhile to let us know how you are doing. Now, go celebrate! Hugs!

Julie likes this comment
Thanks Martha!! I remember when you hit that mark a few years back. I've always admired you and your strong support and information on here. I'll keep stopping in. I can't believe it was over a year since my last post on here and I completely missed 2016!! I"m going to check in A LOT more often. Stay strong and healthy.
Congrats, Cathy!
Cathy likes this comment
Thanks Mari. You're one of my first supporters. I appreciate you so much!!
Cathy likes this comment
What fantastic news!!! Congratulations!! And thank you for being such an inspiration to us all...God Bless XOXO
Thank you! Best to you.
NED rocks!!!!!!!!
It sure does!!!!
I am so happy for you! Just goes to show you cannot rely on the stats. I've actually been contemplating them lately, going to post why on my page.
It seems that the further we get from the date, the quicker time goes, do you feel that way? I'm almost at year 4, sometimes it feels like yesterday, and then more often, I think, "where did the time go?"
I think your milestone/finish line deserves a huge celebration, like a trip to someplace wonderful! XXX!
Hahahaha!!! Thanks Tyndal. I sure do need another trip. So far this year I've been to South Africa (Feb) and Ireland (May) and my hubby says NO MORE. Little does he know, I booked us a cruise in Oct. I'll tell you made me do it. LOL Continued success to you as well. Stay healthy and strong. Thanks for all your wonderful and informational posts through the years. They have helped me a lot. Five years ago seems like forever now so much has happened.
Cathy likes this comment
Great news Cathy! You deserve to celebrate!
Cathy likes this comment
YESSS Relax! Just keep on thinking about dancing with NED!!

But don't stop posting!
Cathy likes this comment
You bet aI will Thank you for always being here for me with your informational posts and HUGE support of BFAC and me. You are wonderful and my inspiration. I will keep posting. I can't believe I didn't post for the entire year last year and half of this one. Not going to let that happen again. Take care.
Cathy likes this comment
I'm so happy for you! Beautiful blessings for your beautiful life!
Cathy likes this comment
Thank you dear!
Sorry I'm so delayed in joining this party. But, this party, Cathy, is one that goes on forever for you. Congratulations on your cure!
Happy birthday!
And here's a hug for your birthday!
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Vital Info


August 22, 2012

Wenatchee, Washington 98801

November 26, 1962

Cancer Info

Anal Cancer

Anal Cancer (Squamous Cell)

May 16, 2012

Stage 3A

4.1 - 5.0 cm


Fluorouracil (5-FU)

Not knowing much about it. Losing control.

Lots about myself, medical info, friends, family and life!

Keep in touch

1 lymph node near the site

Utah Cancer Specialists

Eat healthy, drink tons of water, gargle with Biotene, work, rest, play, use a really good cell protection balm, take immodium.

It helps to have lots of love, support, and prayers.

June 11, 2012

None really, but about 3 months before colonoscopy had some swelling and bleeding down there. Thought it might be hemorrhoids. If it happened a second time I was going to check it.

Mitomycin and 5FU - 2 rounds

6 weeks (30 treatments - 10 spots) beginning 6/11/2012


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