November 19, 2014
I’m back in New York City today to start pre-op testing for my upcoming surgery. Doctors at Memorial Sloan Kettering will be reviewing the procedures for Uterin and Bladder surgery with me, and I’ll be completing the necessary blood work testing, EKG, and overall health check the next two days.
The weather is a crisp 28dg tonight, quite a difference from the 65dg and sunshine in Chula Vista. Oddly enough, the “cold” brings about a warm and festive feeling around this time of the year. I’m looking forward to seeing family and friends as well.
My spiris are high, I’m feeling strong, and most importantly I’m feeling a sense of calmness as I am going into surgery. I am comfortable with Drs. recommendations and with the decisions I have made. grateful for all of the support I have received from family, friends, fellow athletes, colleagues, and even strangers. It reminds me of how important it is to be kind, loving, and compassionate every day.
July 17, 2014
Today Doctors at Memorial Sloan Kettering confirmed that I have Leiomyosarcoma Bladder cancer. Leiomyosarcoma is a rare type of cancer that affects 4 in a million people, and it is a type of cancer that develops in the supporting or connective tissues of the body, such as muscle, fat, nerves, blood vessels, bone and cartilage. There is a strong likelihood that there is a connection between Leiomyosarcoma and Retinoblastoma, the retinal cancer I had as a baby. There is currently very little research on Retinoblastoma and Leiomyosarcoma for individuals in our 30s, making my case even more rare.
On the upside, CT scans and MRIs were done of my chest and spine, as well as a biopsy of my T6 vertebra, and there are no signs of metastasis! Today I also received recommendations for treatment from my oncologist Dr. Keohan, so we have a plan in place!
I’ll be getting 4 sessions of Chemotherapy, which will bring me to September. Then I’ll be re-evaluated via blood work and scans/imaging, and we’ll determine what the next steps will be on this journey. It could be surgery, or surgery followed by more treatment, etc. I am ready for this battle and I am confident I will beat this disease. I’ll be carrying the image of “warrior pose” from yoga with me, and faith and courage in my heart!
Thanks to my incredible husband, family and friends for their unwavering love and support. Thank you to the wonderful Doctors at MSKCC in New York City, and in California, and to the holistic and Naturopathic Drs with whom we’ve been in touch for all of their knowledge and guidance and willingness to work with me.
This is an unexpected turn along my Journey to the 2016 Paralympics, yet I have no doubt I will be racing in Rio De Janeiro! I look forward to having you join me on my journey; your support is priceless!”