Tuesday, November 18, 2014

I'm going to be a runway model!

I just received the deadline for selling my 10 tickets to the fashion show that I'll be walking in as a Breast Cancer Survivor.  I haven't officially sold any tickets!  I know people want to go and I know how hard it is to fork out $100 right before Christmas for something that isn't happening for another 4 months.  
I mean, who knows where you'll be on March 24th, right? What about at the Board of Trade in New Orleans, celebrating your friends Triumphant Battle Against Breast Cancer! What about being with other friends and family at the Board of Trade in New Orleans celebrating your friends Two-Time-Triumphant Battle against Breast Cancer!!! 
Based on the smiles and excitement of the women who participated in the North Shore You Night event, this is  one amazing night. I'm so excited to be a part of it!
Tickets are $100 for a cocktail party from 5:30-10, including open bar, passed foods and desserts, raffle prizes and door prizes and a RUNWAY SHOW.  Corporate sponsorships are available also with packages ranging from $500-$20,000.
After December 4th the individual tickets go up to  $125. I'm trying to figure out away to purchase the tickets now and let you pay later so if you are interested please let me know ASAP. Or if you think your company would be interested in a sponsorship role let me know and I'll get you in touch with the right people.

I have my checkup with my Oncologist next week, a checkup with my Breast Surgeon the following week and my (hopefully) last surgery is December 4th.  They will be removing my port and doing some reconstruction to fix my left breast that was 'messed up' when I had the infection in July.  Please keep my in your thoughts and prayers.  



Tuesday, November 4, 2014

You Night New Orleans 2015


As I’ve mentioned before, I will be walking the runway at the You Night New Orleans 2015 on March 24th, 2015.  I am really excited about this opportunity!  The women who put this together have done a really great thing to empower cancer survivors. 

The event will be at the Board of Trade in downtown New Orleans.  It is a cocktail party with an open bar and passed food and desserts
Here is the link with the event info: http://www.younightevents.com/#!ticketsandsponsors/c1hbz

You can order tickets through eventbrite but there is a processing fee.  If you order through me (by giving me a check for $100 this month) there is no processing fee.  There are also corporate sponsorship packages if you’re interested.
The link for info is: http://www.younightevents.com/#!ticketsandsponsors/c1hbz

This is the event info page if you don’t want to click on the link:






October In Review

Practicing my pose at the Windsor Court
 
Wow, October was a crazy month!  Lots of fun times with family and friends.  And now, 4 days into November I have a cold or sinus infection, or something and I think it’s a sign that I did too much. That’s ok, I wouldn’t change a thing!
 
To catch you up on a few of the events listed in my last post:
On October 2nd I picked up a few copies of Inside New Orleans at the launch party at Saks 5th Ave.  I’m even in a few pictures!  
Magazine cover


Group shot
 

 
On October 16th I attended the NOLA 2015 You Night New Orleans Launch Party at Fulton Square.  This event was to introduce the 2015 New Orleans models for the March 24th, 2015 YOUNIGHT Fashion Show.  This event is going to be soooo cool!  We wear 3 outfits from local boutiques, get our hair and makeup done and have formal practices where we’ll become trained models.  I’ve been asked to sell 10 tickets (which is one table) for the event.  The tickets are $100 each, if ordered through me.  I’d love to sell more than 10 tickets and show New Orleans how a Pacific Northwest girl can rock this!!!  I’m going to do a separate post about this.
 On October 17th I picked up my friend Danielle at the airport and we ran home to get all fancied up for the Pink Gala at the Windsor Court Hotel.  I walked the runway at this event also, dressed in an expensive BCBG outfit.
Judy, me, Bobby and Danielle

my million dollar outfit
View from the patio





My friend Dawn and me



 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Dawn interviewed me for talkdatnola.com.  If you haven't watched the video yet you should!  My story is the 3rd story on Epsiode 3.
The local Race for the Cure was on October 25th.  We were a little unorganized this year and I apologize to anyone looking for us at The Tree we meet at.  I couldn’t find it!  I promise to be more organized next year!
Today I am one month away from my (hopefully) final breast cancer related surgery.  Sometimes I forget that I had breast cancer.  For instance, when I fill out paper work and am asked about my health.  What do I say?  I guess it could give someone a good laugh if I say I’m in good health and then they find out the truth.  Or maybe I am in good health?  I don’t spend too much time thinking about this but sometimes I’m in shock of what I’ve gone through.
My Radiation Oncologist released me from his care although he assured me that he’s always available to me.  Besides, I have several other doctors I see on a regular basis so he’s confident I’m taking care of and doesn’t want to add another doctor appointment to my calendar.  This will be helpful when I go back to work!  My next appointment is with my Breast Surgeon on November 21st when I expect to hear him say it is good to see me and he’ll see me again in 3 months.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

I'm on the verge of one incredible month


As we're all aware, October is Breast Cancer Awareness month. 

Now, October has a new-new meaning to me.  This October I am celebrating Breast Cancer Awareness month as a Survivor.  October 14th marks my official One Year Survivor mark.  It’s kind of hard to believe that I’ve been cancer free for one year considering it’s only been 5 months since my last chemo, 2 months since my last cancer-related surgery and I still have at least 2 surgeries remaining.  But, technically, my cancer was surgically removed from my body on October 14th, 2013.  I believe a celebration is in store (I love celebrations!!).
October 2nd I’ll be attending the Launch Party for Inside New Orleans magazine at SAKS Fifth Avenue.  Along with 23 other survivors, I will be featured in the first edition of Inside New Orleans magazine that will be on newsstands October 1st and delivered to 30,000 recipients in the area.    

October 16th I will be attending the NOLA 2015 You Night New Orleans Launch Party.  A group of women put together an event on the North Shore in 2013 to honor and empower survivors.  Last year this event had 500-600 people.  This year, the North Shore event is October 9th and the New Orleans event will be in March 2015.  I will be walking the runway at the You Night NOLA event in March.  The launch party on Oct 16th is at Fulton Square, sponsored by Harrah’s Casino and open to the public. 
October 17th is still Court’s Birthday but this year I, among other survivors, am being honored at The Pink Gala.  I will be walking the runway as a Survivor, styled by BCBG.   This event is put on by the New Orleans Living Magazine and Television. 
Our team is slowly growing for Race for the Cure on October 26th.  There’s still time to sign up!  I think this is the right link:
http://neworleans.info-komen.org/site/TR/RacefortheCure/MTR_NewOrleansAffiliate?team_id=309538&pg=team&fr_id=4376

My appointment with my Oncologist a few weeks ago ended up being uneventful.  She seems to think things are going well for me and ok’d the removal of my port.  The plan is to remove it on December 4th when I have another reconstruction procedure at the fancy hospital.  I almost had to get it removed sooner because when I went to get my port flushed there was something wrong with it.  Luckily we don’t need to use it anymore so no tests were done to find out what is wrong with it.  All the more reason to get it taken out.  Luckily it can wait until December and I don’t need another surgery.

Disclaimer: I am no model nor do I intend to become one.  (I mean, unless someone wanted to pay me lots of money, give me a uacht, give me a bigger house with a house keeper, chef, driver, dog walker… J  These events are honoring Survivors, I was not picked by looks or personality but I know I score high in both areas. Ha! 

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Race for the Cure 2014

Race for the Cure is coming up and it'll be the 3rd year for our team Kickin’ it Pink to participate. I just registered Micah and myself so our team is going strong with 2 participants :) If you plan to do the race and don’t have another team to sign up with please join our team! We don’t really do anything special but we could!

Tomorrow morning I have my 3 month checkup with my Oncologist, Dr Barnhill. I’m not expecting much excitement but I guess you never know. From what I understand, this is an appointment to discuss any new symptoms I have and to figure out what should be done about them. The only way we can tell that something is wrong is if I have a symptom that indicates further testing is needed.

As far as I can tell I don’t have any symptoms needing further testing. I will tell Dr Barnhill that I was having headaches but I think they were from clenching my jaw while I slept. My right wrist hurts but I think that’s from being on my phone too much (kind of embarrassing!) I had an appointment with my OB/GYN a few weeks ago and my test results were negative. I had my checkup with the surgeon who does the biopsies and he had no concerns. I’ve been seeing my surgeon who does my reconstruction surgeries on a regular basis since July 17th and he doesn’t seem to have concerns besides how I’m healing from my surgeries. So I think I’m ok. I hope I’m ok. I'll let you know how the appointment goes.



Our 2012 team

We have lots of fun!

2013 was a little colder
 
2012

Cristie will be missed this year

California Kickin' It Pink team members
 

Friday, August 29, 2014

Cancer gets an F- (F minus)

I emailed a friend to voice my frustration or disbelief, I’m not sure what it was, about having cancer twice, making it through chemo, radiation and multiple surgeries relatively smoothly.  I mean, yes, I had pain, anxiety, swelling, a punctured lung and hated all of it but for the most part things went as planned.  So when I had surgery on July 17thand was in the hospital for 2 nights, admitted for 3 nights for IV antibiotics due to an infection a week later and then readmitted for a surgery to completely cut out the infection I said, “Can you believe it?  After all this I can’t heal from a surgery?”  That’s when Cate told me “Cancer gets an F-.” And I had to laugh, boy is she right.

I ended up being in the hospital for 3 nights to get the IV antibiotics.  I went back for my post op visit and the infection hadn’t really improved.  My surgeon said he thought the best plan was to take me back to the operating room to cut out the infection.  On Thursday, July 31st, I went back to surgery and Dr. Sullivan complete cut out the infected area.  I stayed one night and then came home, with another drain and more pain meds.  The drain was removed a week later.  As of today all of my stitches have been removed and I think I’m in the clear.    

Here’s a little recap:
July 17 – surgery to reconstruct my breasts and remove the scar from the lumpectomy I had in October 2013.
July 24 – admitted for 4 days/3 nights of IV antibiotics.
July 31 – back to the O.R. to remove the infection.
August 7 – drain removed
August 18 - some stitches removed
August 25 - remaining stitches removed

Because of the complications I will have at least one more surgery, if not two.  My left breast is now quite a bit smaller and shaped differently from my right breast due to the procedure that cut out the infection.  You might think, well Kristyn nobody has perfect breasts so why not stop?  I’ll tell you why.  First of all, I’ve been through a lot and I think I deserve this.  Second, you might call them million dollar boobs but I’m pretty sure million dollar boobs are perfect!  I know there are other reasons and I also know I don’t need to explain myself so I’ll stop with this - all of these surgeries I’m having are because I was told, in Sept 2012 and Sept 2013, that I have Breast Cancer.

Sept 2014 is right around the corner so please say a prayer or make a wish for me that the cancer really is gone.  I have an appointment with my Oncologist on Sept 4th.  I’m hoping she is ready for me to get my port-a-cath out.  Not that I’m bothered by having it in, it’s just that it’d be pretty significant to take it out.  No port means no more chemo.


This is my arm at one point during my hospital stays.  When I was admitted for IV antibiotics they used my port to give me the antibiotics but they had to draw blood from my arm.  My blood is hard to find!

Friday, July 25, 2014

Driving to the beach?

Surgery last week went well.  I ended up staying 2 nights, kind of by force on my part because I wanted an extra night in the hospital to be taken care of and to make sure I was ready.  I'm not sure it was 100% necessary but I'm glad I stayed because I felt 100% better the 2nd day.  I left the hospital with 2 drains, one from each breast, a prescription for pain pills and one for an antibiotic (which is standard) and felt pretty good.  I did nothing Saturday and Sunday except rest.  Monday I had one appointment to get my port flushed and went back home to rest.

Tuesday I went in for my post op visit because I wanted to get my drains removed.  Laura, the Physicians Assistant, removed my right drain but said my left breast was infected and needed to leave the left drain in until the infection was gone.  She prescribed a stronger antibiotic and said to check in Wednesday to see what the progress was.  I called in Wednesday morning and then sent her a picture of my breast.  I know it's ok to send pics of your breast to the Breast Center but I did feel kind of weird doing it!  She said it looked like my breast had improved but she wanted me to check in Thursday.  Well, at 5:06pm, Wednesday (you know, 6 minutes after they closed) I started to get nervous that my breast was worse than it was in the morning.  I sent pics (again, feeling weird) to my friend Jolie, who has recently started working at the St Charles Surgical Center, and she said I should call the Breast Center and see what they thought I should do.  Again, I sent pictures, this time to a man but still a doctor.  I felt even weirder!  He called me back, said he thought it was a skin infection and could wait til Thursday but that I'd need to be seen and probably admitted.

Thursday morning I received a call to come in at 10 and bring clothes for a 2-3 day hospital stay.  Luckily I was admitted to the St Charles Surgical Center where I had my surgery.  I was kind of worried I'd be admitted to the regular hospital, which would've been fine but I was very happy I wasn't.  So far I've been in for about 24 hours.  I've had several rounds of antibiotics and 2 rounds of steroids.  My infection is getting better but I'll be here another day, at least.  I feel fine, except for my breast.  I haven't had any other symptoms so we caught the infection early enough and I'll find out tomorrow morning if I'll be leaving or staying another day.

We are so thankful that my mom is here to help with everything.  What a relief!  Bobby went back to the fire house on Thursday, after his vacation, so it was great to not have to scramble to make plans for Micah and our dogs.  We are blessed in so many ways.  I watched a movie last night that almost made me cry and I'm pretty sure I have never cried at a movie.  The only reason the tears didn't fall last night was because I knew the nurses were coming in soon.  It was kind of a fluke that I watched the movie, my friend (who will remain nameless!) brought me some dvds including The Family Stone.  It's actually a good movie and I'm not mad she brought it but one of the characters ends up dying of Breast Cancer (HELLO I kind of relate to that!).  The tears wouldn't have been because she died of Breast Cancer.  The tears would've come because this movie made me realize/remember that I am so lucky, blessed and thankful that I have made it trough cancer, twice.  I am alive to see my son grow.  I am seeing Helena grow up.  I celebrated another birthday.  Bobby and I will celebrate another anniversary.    And I have so many more things to look forward to that I don't even know about!  

Getting ready to head home from the hospital on Saturday. 

I thought it'd be fun to get 'Bobby' but 'Buddy' is good.  Micah is My Buddy and I'd love to share a coke with him.  My mom brings him to visit but it's not the same as him waking me up and then spending mornings and evenings with him.
So, my mom sends me pictures. Last night Micah got in his truck with his hat on and his alligator and was driving to the beach.