Bill and I went to the oncologist today to get the final report on the testing of the cancer tissue that was done over the last month. We were told that I would need to have chemotherapy due to the type of cancer they found. Even though I don't have any cancer now, this is a preventative measure because they found that the cancer is HER2 receptor positive. Here is a brief explanation of what that means:
About 15 to 20 percent of breast cancers are HER2-positive, meaning the cancer is fueled by over-production of the human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 protein. HER2-positive breast cancers contain excess copies of this gene, leading to dramatically more HER2 protein on the surface of cancer cells. With more HER2 protein producing signals telling the cells to grow, they do so out of control, causing cancer.
The tissue was sent to 3 different laboratories to get three independent analysis. They all came back with a mid-risk result regarding the HER2 protein. There is a 20% chance of the cancer returning and in the cancer "world" that is high. This isn't something I inherited from my parents so much as it's just the DNA of my body from what we can understand. He also presented my case to a board of cancer specialists he is part of and with all the results that came back to him, he came to the conclusion I should have a year-long chemo treatment.
We really weren't expecting this kind of news today so it's taking some time to sink in. We so appreciate the professionalism of the Doctor, and the lengths he went to in order to get to a proper diagnosis. And we ARE thankful that it's all about preventative and not about trying to reduce a tumor etc.
Bill and I are both in agreement that I will go ahead with the treatment. Of course we are a little bit staggered by it but not knocked out of our faith. Bill actually told me earlier today that he had a "hunch" that things were going to play out this way given the way the Lord likes to use things like this in the lives of His children to minister to the lives of other people in the midst of their pain. Bill calls it Incarnational Compassion.
Please know that one of the great sources of blessing in our lives is you all. Your love, support, and encouragement are deep wells that we continuously draw encouragement from. Thank you for being there for us and thank you for praying for us as we continue to try to navigate well the footprints that Jesus is leaving behind for us.
On the Potter's wheel,
Teri and Bill