Millions and millions of people all over the world are diagnosed with a variety of different cancers, every year, and millions and millions die from the disease. So many precious lives. It has been since 1971 that the war was declared on cancer...40+ years, now. Though there has been advances in treatment, there still is no cure. Billions of dollars have been raised for research, in seeking the cure; however, to date, no one has yet been able to find out how a cell multiplies out of control. We can grow embryos in a petri dish. We can transplant organs from a deceased being and provide life to another. We can even transplant a new face from a donor to a recipient in need. We can eliminate every cell in the body and transplant stem cells...but...for some reason...we cannot find out what makes a cell multiply out of control.
I am a breast cancer survivor, 14 years NED. Five years after my diagnosis, my daughter was diagnosed (gene tested and not inherited). UPDATE (June, 2013)... After this initial diagnosis of breast cancer, my daughter was successfully treated; however, 4 years later (at age 43), she was diagnosed with a new primary in the other breast. The first BC was triple negative, like mine, and the second one was receptor positive. Keep in mind that my daughter had been tested for BRCA1 & BRCA2 and the test came back negative. Due to a concerning symptom that I had, which was followed up with ultrasound and found to be negative, my doctor sent me to a Geneticist. They took a family history. In my family, my mom, all three of her sisters and her mom had colon cancer. My mom's aunts had ovarian cancer and one of those aunt's daughters also had ovarian cancer...but no one had breast cancer. I was the first. The Geneticist stated that red flags popped up when I told her my daughter first had breast cancer at age 39, with a second, new primary four years later. She stated that when there is a gene mutation, many women will have cancer before age 50. She told me of the BART test, which is a more involved test for BRCA1 & BRCA2 mutations. As an analogy, the BRCA1 & 2 analysis will test for mutations in a sentence, BART will test for mutations in a paragraph, a larger area. I had the BART test done and I just received my results, a couple of days ago and have learned that I am BRCA1 positive. I will now have to have my ovaries removed. My daughters will now have to make a decision as to what they choose to do. UPDATE (September, 2014)...Both daughters have now had the BART test and both have tested positive for the BRCA 1 gene mutation. I had my ovaries and tubes removed in in March, 2014. Had it not been for that test, I never would have known and would have thought I was negative, like my daughter's initial first test stated that she was. With the ovarian cancer history on my mother's side of the family, I have been lucky...no, blessed, up to this point, that I did not get ovarian cancer. My point is...for those of you who have had a negative BRCA test, my suggestion is to have the BART test. For those of you contemplating testing, you should request the BART test, period. The problem is, the insurance companies do not want to pay for the test and many people have to pay a lot of money out of pocket. It is my opinion that there should not even be an offer for the less involved BRCA test to ANYONE, being that it does not tell all, and women could receive a false negative, when they are actually positive, just like my daughter. Look at how many women will go on to believe they are negative and will not take proactive measures to save their lives, when a simple blood test could have given them that option. Some will get breast and/or ovarian cancer. Many will lose their lives. Had I not had the BART test done, my daughter would not have known that she was actually positive for the mutation, due to the negative results she had been given. In my opinion, everyone should have the more involved BART test. I understand that there is now a kit that can be ordered through your doctor, which costs only $250. You swab your mouth, send it in and they test for something like 20 different mutations. My sister has one ordered for herself. Update (June, 2016)...my sister tested positive and has had surgery to remove her ovaries.
For those of us who are not dealing with BRCA positive mutations, I think that many cancers are the cause of our environment. That is only my opinion and I have nothing to go on...just my thoughts. Chemicals in our food, our products, our water, the air, in my opinion seems to be wreaking havoc on our bodies. We will never be able to rid ourselves of all chemicals in everything that we eat, use, drink or breathe because sometimes they are just necessary...the lesser of two evils, if you will, BUT...we CAN try to reduce them. My dad was an artist and in his everyday routine of painting, he was using and being around oil paints and other necessary chemicals in their use. He died of brain cancer, in 2010. I read that a number of oil paint artist have died of brain cancer and that the chemicals are a suspected cause. Environmental. I may be a perfectionist but I am by no means a purist. Too difficult.
I have created this site because eventually, I will be offering my handmade awareness/pink themed jewelry.
Just as an aside...I know that the scene at the top of the page is dreary. It depicts what I felt like when given the diagnosis of cancer; dreary, foggy, lonely, sadness. It is a feeling I will never forget. I think it reflects many of our feelings in wanting to know, "Where Is the Cure?" When the cure is found...the picture will change.
Pamper Yourself...You Deserve The Experience!!!