Story 3


Radiation Grrl here, with a report from the nuclear science world. I am halfway through Week 3 of radiation and I’m simply…glowing. Literally. My chest looks like it’s been attacked by a pack of roving fire ants (it’s actually a condition called radiation dermatitis) and it’s come to this: wearing cooling gel packs across my chest 24 hours a day. Hilarious – gel boobs and now gel chestbone! No revealing v-necks for me for a while. In other news, I still can’t feel the backs of my arms but my nerve endings are coming back in short, painful little bursts (irritated by the radiation). It takes about an hour each day to get radiated, start to finish. But the entire radiation team at Marin Cancer Care is amazing–funny and kind–so I feel lucky to be close by and with good people. I got another hairstyle compliment last week (!) and it feels strange–my hair is growing in thick and curly.

I’m starting to feel more tired and am trying to keep up my walking and insane protein intake and (doctor prescribed!) 10 hours of sleep each night. My last treatment is still slated for early December and then it’s back on the PARP pill. And please God a nice break from daily medical appointments until surgery next fall!

We are in full Halloween swing here, with carved pumpkins and fake spiders and my two little ghosts. Halloween should be fabulous (Penelope will be a vampire, Roman will be Cookie Monster) and we’ll be with friends in Bolinas. Candy and the beach; what could be better?

I hope you’re enjoying the gorgeous leaves and cool air…I am loving it. Thanks, as always, for sticking by me and my family. I “met” another patient in LA last week, a 34 year old mom of two with stage 4 breast cancer in her liver and right breast. We talk almost daily about life as moms with cancer and it’s just another reminder that I’m not alone—cancer is literally everywhere. Hard to believe it is almost a year from my diagnosis date; your thoughts and good wishes and emails and cards are STILL appreciated, trust me.

With love and gratitude,


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