Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Still Using The "R" Word

Warmest of hello's to my family and friends. I hope all reading this are well, peaceful and happy.

Here I am-December 2014. Though it can change tomorrow or even today, I am still in remission. Three years-still in remission. 
Cancer cells are still flowing around trying to find a place to take hold, which in my weaker moments terrifies me, but in most moments I can brush it off. 

In November of 2011 Dr. Moriarty told me there isn't any clinical evidence of cancer. I think it took me just this past year to be comfortable saying that to people, though maybe it has taken me this long to believe it.  And I am grateful. Most of the time I feel like I am living in a fantasy world. Like I am playing "life," like a child would play house. When I was diagnosed life became mind-numbingly difficult, everything was hard. I was living in a state of constant fear for my life, and no one could tell me it was going to be okay. That is sobering my friends. But today is different. All of that aforementioned stress, fear and anguish is gone.

Can you imagine? I just get to go to work, take care of my kids, go shopping, la, la, la. It's a breeze.

I am grateful for everyday I can wake up and put me feet on the floor. I am grateful that my children and husband, my family, are alive and healthy. 

Everything else. Everything else icing on the cake. 

Life is hard. Life is full of devastation and heartache. But if you stop and pause and take your time to live in the present, you can always find the greatness and kindness of life. Or at the very least find something to make you smile and bring you a moments peace, or healing. If you take the time to be still, be alive where you are, you can find it. 

I cannot ever thank everyone enough, for all the prayers and support through-out these 7 and a half years. I will always be indebted to all of you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. 

I continue to be monitored and have my blood checked every 4-6 weeks and my scans will be coming up in a month or so. If you don't hear from me - all is good.

I love you all and thank you for everything. I will continue to try and live my life gratefully in honor of all of you and in honor of all those no longer with us.

God Bless.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the update, Karen. I always check in on your blog and hope you're doing well. I was concerned when I hadnt seen you post after August, but am so glad to hear you're doing great!

-- daughter of stage iv mCRC, bilobar liver mets, initially inoperable, multi-resected, dad also dx in 2008 and still doing well!

Catherine Shanahan Murphy said...

Wonderful blog. You are amazing, sister. Love you so much.

Anonymous said...

Karen. Good for you. I have tracked your status since the beginning and was hopeful that your post would be a good one and it was. You are an inspiration to me and, I'm certain, to others. John G.

Anonymous said...

Dear Karen, I think about you all the time and pray for you every night. Your wonderful post fills my heart with such joy. You truly are an inspiration and Dan and I wish you and your beautiful family a joyous and blessed Christmas and New Year. Please say hi to your mom and dad and the rest of the clan. Much love, Linda Place

Anonymous said...


Wow! It must be such a great feeling to continue to be cancer free. Enjoy your freedom!


Suz said...

Hi Karen, my Aunty (55yo) was diagnosed this week with stage 4 Bowel cancer - she had no symptoms and we have no family history. I found your blog and it has given me some hope for her. Thank you for sharing. Suz from Australia

Anonymous said...


I check your blog every so often hoping to see good updates like this. How happy I was to read this!!

Like you I revel in the wonderful things around family and taking care or our home. Every day is a true gift.

I have been in remission since surgery for my Stage IV colon cancer (liver). I have been in remission for 5 1/2 years. Next scan is in January so fingers crossed for another good scan.

I wish you and your family a blessed holiday season and a wonderful new year.


Peter Mantell said...


Congratulations on this wonderful news. Although we have never met, I follow your blog with great interest as your home is the home in which I grew up. I have, on occasion, shared your story with my Dad, and he wishes you the very best.

It is my prayer that you continue to have health and happiness, with a generous portion of love. May God continue to bless you and your family.

Peter M

Priya said...

Hi Karen..my dad has been diagnosed with colon cancer and has gone through hemicoloctomy last week.u are truly inspiring..thanks a ton. Hugs

Sarah Gonzalez said...
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Anonymous said...

Karen, I can give you more back story later (my situation is very similar to yours in the beginning). You can find me at Team Rachel on fb. What I really want to know right now is where did you go for the surgeries, ablations, SIRS?? Were you ever told you were inoperable? Did you have to get 2nd, third, etc opinions? Your info that sums up your treatments is so helpful. Thank you so much from one young mom to another. Trying to find some docs who will get more aggressive with my treatment. Thanks for any more info you can give me.

Andrea Dougherty said...

I was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer this month... Is in my liver. Starting chemo in 2 days.
I was searching the internet for hope, and found you. Bless you, Karen. Please don't stop writing.
Matthew 17:20

Anonymous said...

Dear Karen
I want to thankyou for your blog. My mum was diagnosed with stage iv bowel cancer 6 months ago. I showed her your blog when she was about a month into the chemo and wben she mentioned your blog to her oncologist she received her first bit of hope since treatment began. She has since responded very well to the chemo and will now be on maintenance. Thankyou so much.

Elizabeth said...

My dad was just diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer with a tumor in his liver and cancer in the lymphnodes surrounding the liver. I'm looking for survivors for him to connect with to give hope.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Karen and Fran for sharing your journey and keeping it public for all of us to find. I found your blog today and read it all from start to end, I have cried and laughed and felt hopeful. My sweet friend is 26 and was diagnosed 6 days ago with stage 4 bowel cancer and liver mets. She will start chemo in the next few days. Reading your story has made me feel stronger to help support her and her husband through what is to come. Her doctor has told her he 'is not confident' about the chemo. Ill direct them to your blog and hopefully they will seek some other opinions and find a Dr Dan of their own.

Please write another update soon or maybe share some other sources you have found of young people surviving this harsh disease. Every comment and good news story helps build the spark of hope in this horrible black place.

Thank you, I hope you all continue to live strong and well each day.
Jess in Australia x

Anonymous said...

Dear Karen and family,

My father was recently diagnosed with Stage IV rectal cancer with liver and lung mets. I was searching the internet for information about the disease, and I found your blog. It's been a tremendous source of inspiration and hope for me and my family.

I'm really glad to hear you're still cancer free. Thank you so much for sharing your experience.

Frank Sit said...

Very nice post, impressive. its quite different from other posts. Thanks for sharing.


Rio Hondo said...

Is Karen's Cancer blog now history. I keep checking it but it never updates, which can be a good thing, of course. Let us know.

melissa said...

Hi..thk u so much for this post. My sis in law was also diagnosed with cancer n she going for chemo soon. She was so weak past months. I hope to share this story with her. Through recommendation fr her friend recently, she is taking some kind of supplements n she don't feel so tired ..I hope she n all of u gets better

Anna Scott said...

My sister is diagnosed with stage 2 bowel cancer and she will be undergoing chemotherapy next week .. My parents are worried about her. I pray to almighty for her recovery.

Ali Ismail said...

Karen, I was just diagnosed with Stage IV Colon Cancer at 35 years old. As you know all too well, it's been devastating for me. I would love to communicate with you via email with questions or concerns if you don't mind. Thanks a lot. Your story gives me hope.

Xavier said...

Keep fighting the good fight