Networking with survivors has saved my life: Tips to build your network

Networking with survivors has saved my life: Tips to build your network

My dear friend Banita and I had lunch yesterday, trying to figure out a way to reach and help stage IV breast cancer survivors in our community. Banita serves on the board of Pink Ribbon Girls, a local group that provides support and services to women affected by breast cancer. Several of our members have died recently, leaving behind husbands and young children. Because of what I do and my years of survivorship, many people come to me for advice and support. I’m not an expert and certainly not a medical professional, so I just offer my experience and a dash of hope. Unfortunately, sometimes it is not enough. I’ve noticed that several people have approached me for help when they are in the last weeks of their lives. They are desperate and willing to...

Read More

Not taking the holidays for granted

Not taking the holidays for granted

Yesterday I was wrapping presents for our “Christmaskah” celebration. It felt a little indulgent, sitting by the TV and binge-watching The Tudors on Netflix as I wrapped. But I started thinking about the importance of what I was doing and how fortunate I am to be here to do it. Like many families, I, the mom, do all the shopping for our daughter Chrissy. I admit that I spoil her, but she is not spoiled. She appreciates and thanks us for everything. Part of the reason I do this is because when I grew up, we didn’t really celebrate the holidays. Yes, we were Jewish, but I was lucky to get even one gift for Hannukah. It was never wrapped and never a surprise and was given to be begrudgingly. The holidays were also a downer because when I was eight,...

Read More

On the road with Miracle Survivors

On the road with Miracle Survivors

  Just a quick update from California. I started out on my mini book tour in Indianapolis with Krysti Hughett, my friend and 10 year-, stage 4 inlmatory Breast cancer survivor who is one of the amazing people inu book. From there, I flew out to LA. I’m having a wonderful time visiting with Lynda DeWitt, whose story is featured in Miracle Survivors. Not only is she a fabulous host; she is has help ed arrange three of my four book signings/talks here. It has been so exciting to share the book’s message of hope and meet longtime online friends for the very first time. I even got to meet a celebrity: Nancy Allen, who was in the original Carrie and all three Robocop movies! Nancy is now executive director of WeSpark Cancer Support Center, where I...

Read More

Being proactive helps Krysti beat the odds of inflammatory breast cancer

Being proactive helps Krysti beat the odds of inflammatory breast cancer

The longer I’m on this cancer journey, the more I’ve learned how important it is to be an informed, proactive patient. Thank God I’ve met so many inspiring people who have helped pave the path for me. My friend Krysti Hughett is living proof of the power of doing your research and advocating for yourself. She has shared so much valuable information with me about clinical trials and cancer freebies like Camp Kesem, a free overnight camp for kids whose parents have/had cancer (our daughters have been cabin mates for seven summers now). So I was thrilled when she agreed to share her amazing story in my book, Miracle Survivors: Beating the Odds of Incurable Cancer. In 2004 at age 44, Krysti Hughett learned she had inflammatory breast cancer (IBC), a...

Read More

American Cancer Society and Extended Stay team up to help cancer patients like me

American Cancer Society and Extended Stay team up to help cancer patients like me

I just love when serendipity happens. As a blogger, I get all kinds of solicitations — from people wanting me to promote everything from their books and personal care products to services and charities for cancer survivors. To keep the integrity of this blog intact, I’m usually unable to accommodate requests if they’re trying to sell products. But I love to pass along free services and resources for cancer patients/survivors. This week, I received a very timely correspondence from the PR agency for Extended Stay America hotels. The press release reads: Extended Stay America — the largest owner-operated hotel brand in the U.S., and the American Cancer Society (ACS) — the largest voluntary health organization in the nation —...

Read More

Book signing launches hope

Book signing launches hope

Tuesday night I birthed my baby. No, not a real baby; I’m much too old (and devoid of reproductive organs, thanks to a hysterectomy) to do that! I had the pleasure and honor of publicly unveiling my book, Miracle Survivors: Beating the Odds of Incurable Cancer at my book launch/signing party. Although I had been planning it for a long time, I really didn’t have much time to think about it until a few days before the event. You’ll understand what I mean if you’ve been keeping up with my ever-changing journey to get on my chosen clinical trial. (More about that later). It was a wonderful evening surrounded by friends and community members. What I didn’t expect is how much inspiration I would draw from the event. I got up and briefly...

Read More

New look, new book, new treatment

New look, new book, new treatment

New look The first thing you might notice is Miracle Survivors has a whole new look! I think it’s fresher, easier to navigate, and overall, an improved design. We’ve cleaned up some of the items you see in the right sidebar and moved the page tabs to the other side. You don’t have to scroll through a whole story to get to the next one or through a long list of categories (thanks to a new menu pull-down feature). I want to thank my friend and web designer Jason Bayer from MOBA Interactive for all his great work! New book Which brings me to my next piece of exciting news! Yesterday I received my shipment of my new book, Miracle Survivors: Beating the Odds of Incurable Cancer! I’ve heard from many of you who pre-ordered yours from Amazon that...

Read More