A Temporary Setback
Round 4


I am happy to report that I was able to bounce back from last week's ailments and proceed with Round 3 of chemo today. Hooray!

I actually felt great the last couple of days - it's been 3 weeks since my last infusion and nearly all the side effects have subsided (for now; I'm sure they'll be back in full swing by Sunday).

That, coupled with the 70+ degree weather we've been enjoying in Boston, made me feel more energized than I have in weeks. I even took advantage of the Howard Ulfelder, MD, Healing Garden on the roofop of the MGH Cancer Center today - a quiet oasis of plants, flowers, running water, and sunshine overlooking the Charles River. It's still a bit dormant from the winter season, but beautiful nonetheless.

IMAG0792The Healing Garden is designed to provide a brief respite from the stress and activity of the clinical environment, a place to meditate or just enjoy the quiet and fresh air. There's an indoor pavilion as well, so that it may be used year-round.

It's a very inspirational place: patient success stories line the walls, along with Hope Flags created by children in the nearby pediatric oncology center...

...a big pot of Touch Stones are there for the taking...

...and a guest book full of personal sentiments from other visitors to flip through/add to...



So, I'm feeling good after treatment, inspired by the weather and surroundings, and enjoying one more bit of information that made this a better week: I got the results back from the BRCA genetic test and they were negative! Meaning my cancer is not hereditary, and I don't have to worry about a higher likelihood (40%-60% chance for those with the gene mutation) that the cancer will come back. And at the risk of TMI: the tumor feels softer, so we think the chemo may be working. Fingers crossed.

Three down; five to go!


Lindsay Chalmers

Great News Steph! I agree with Ann seeing you around the office with the same smile on your face is SUCH an inspiration! :) Like you said - fingers crossed.. and toes too :)

Eric Wholley

Are you experiencing any nausea from the chemo? I hear that's common. I asked a doctor friend of mine about this when I learned of your current condition. Here's what he had to say "....I normally would recommend acupuncture and herbs and foods to support her digestive tract, but these will depend on what is going on with her specifically, as well as the meds she is using..."

If you have any interest or are curious and would like to speak with him directly, let me know. He and his wife are both medical doctors but they also embrace natural and eastern methods. His wife is on Dr. Oz show all the time.

Stay well.



Thank you, Everyone! It's now Saturday night and I'm feeling pretty well. Let's hope it lasts!

Eric Wholley

Wow - that's excellent news! You - and your great progress - remain in my thoughts and prayers.


Ann Toomey

Stephanie -- That is so awesome about the BRCA test!!! Thank you for posting this -- you're such an inspiration:)

Karen Rogers

I am soooooo HAPPY to hear things are brighter this week! We are praying for you. Thinking of you always.
Love & Hugs!!

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