Whirlwind Weeks

The past couple of weeks have been a complete whirlwind of so many high points and I truly admit that sometimes I forget that I have cancer.

The 1st   annual Cabral’s Crusaders Fundraiser was an enormous success. I was so proud of the event and so happy with the way it turned out. I had a room full of approximately 150 people that truly love and support Trevor, the kids and myself and that felt really good! It was a night when all of my worlds collided, I had my childhood friends, my college friends, sorority sisters, work friends, mom friends, and wonderful family members all together for what I think was a really fun night. The most important part was that we were able to profit close to $10,000 which will be applied to the team bank for the Cabral’s Crusaders 2017 Jimmy Fund Walk!!! We should all be so proud. This was truly a team effort. I am so thankful for all of the donations that poured in for this event. I am thankful to everyone that attended and am so thankful to the ones that bought tickets even though you could not make it. As a said in my little speech at the event, “You are all truly the force behind our strength in this battle” and for that we could never show how truly appreciative we are. I want to send special shout outs to Metacomet Country Club and especially Alitha Wood. They were amazing and so generous with us and our event and provided us with a beautiful and perfect venue for the night. A huge thank you to Fevah Dream. I have been friends with these guys for close to 15 years and have heard them so many times. Rocking out with you guys that night made me feel 21 again!!! You are all great friends and the way you supported me that night and continue to support me will not be forgotten. Thank you, thank you, thank you to Kim Keune who donated her time and captured the time with gorgeous photos that we can always look back on!! Thank you, Lauren Brady who helped me, on numerous Saturdays behind the scenes getting things ready and was a huge help the day/night of setting everything up and helping to make sure everything ran smoothly. Thank you to Nicole and Sarah who manned the registration table. Thank you to Beth and Michelle who sold tickets. Thank you to all of the people who helped run the most efficient raffle that I have ever seen!! Love to you all.

A few days after the event, Trevor and I took off to Nashville with a really great and fun group of people. Being the country music lover that I am, I have been wanting to go to Nashville for quite some time now and boy did it not disappoint. We had so many laughs, listened to great music, rocked cowboy boots and drank WAY too many Bud Lights. Definitely a check off of my bucket list but I hope to be back there again one day!

This past Wednesday was scan day! Always an anxiety riddled day but I felt eerily peaceful about the day. Is this because, it is becoming routine to me or that I know I have no control over what is going to happen only how I can react to it? Not sure yet, still working on that one! Regardless, after a long day of scanning and being re-scanned (which always causes some concern) my oncologist walked in and said the 6 letters that mean the most to a Stage 4 Breast Cancer patient- STABLE! I am still stable!! Thank god! Things are continuing to work and more importantly I continue to feel good!!

**The 2017 Jimmy Fund walk is going to be on September 24th! If you would like to join our team please visit: www.jimmyfundwalk.org/2017/Cabralscrusaders Be sure to use the code Crusaders to receive $5 off of your registration! Let’s make this year’s team bigger than last year!!

** Please visit this link to view some of the entrance photos from the fundraiser. You can purchase the photos on the site and a portion of the proceeds will be donated to our team!Cabral Wine and Beer Tasting Fundraiser

**If you would like to book a photo session with Kim, please visit http://www.kimkeune.com/ for contact info. Be sure to mention our event and she will donate a portion of your session fee to our team!!

Click here to view the slide show that was presented at the fundraiser highlighting the 2016 Cabral’s Crusaders and the reasons why we walk!



Trevor tired from a long day at DFCI!



“We have two options, medically and emotionally: GIVE UP OR FIGHT LIKE HELL”-Lance Armstrong

FIGHT LIKE HELL IT IS!! I cannot and will not give up this fight.

I walked this past weekend in the 2016 Jimmy Fund walk to benefit cancer research with an amazing team of over 60 people. Together we raised over $27,000 and donations are continuing to roll in. We had a great day and I am so proud of our accomplishments in our first year participating and look forward to making this bigger and better for many years to come. Trevor and I are so blessed to have looked out on Sunday at the sea of people in pink Cabral Crusader’s shirts and then to have photos sent to us of people who couldn’t make the walk but wore the shirts to show that they were with us in spirit! WE thank each and everyone of you. This situation that we have found ourselves in with this diagnosis is awful but each and everyone of you have brought a smile to our faces and have helped us through this in some way whether you realize it or not.

A couple of weeks ago, my friend Eileen passed away from cancer. When I was first diagnosed Eileen told me that having cancer is a marathon not a sprint and she helped me with some positive words that got me through the initial shock of my situation. This year I walked in Eileen’s memory.


Here is a video of our walk that was put together by the amazing Melissa Scungio!!



Cabral’s Crusaders

When I started this team for the upcoming Jimmy Fund walk last month, I did not expect much to come of it. I thought this was going to be our trial run as it was our first year participating. Maybe I could get 10 people to join me, raise a couple thousand dollars and sell some shirts! Boy was I wrong! As of this morning OUR team has 30 members, has raised over $20,000 towards a cure for all cancers and has sold 95 t-shirts!!! I am amazed by this! We have started off at an amazing place and I cannot wait to see how this will grow over the years! This is going to be my way of giving back to me new cancer community and when I am gone (hopefully in a really long time) this will be a way for my kids to keep my memory going!! So thank you all for the support. You will never know how much this truly means to me.

Someone in one of my support groups recently described my diagnosis as having the sand timer flipped over! I am essentially watching the sand and waiting for it to run out. While I am waiting for the sand to run out (I am confident that my sand timer is HUGE and that sand is flowing really slowly!), life in general is short! No one’s tomorrow is guaranteed! So live life to the fullest every day! Surround yourself with people who bring the best to your life and get rid of all of the negatives! I have always tried to live this way but now more than ever see how important it is!

Something good?

One week ago, I decided to join the Jimmy Fund walk to benefit cancer research and Dana Farber. I went back and forth on whether I wanted to announce that I was walking and why and at the same time announce my blog. Doing so would leave me exposed and vulnerable. Ultimately, I decided to post it and I could not be happier, as I know I made the right choice.

In the past week, I have heard from people I have not heard from in years, had people say wonderful things and show so much love and support, had some bring back great memories, opened up my prayer network, had someone share a story of someone living well with this disease, had over 300 hits on my blog, and raised almost $10,000 for cancer research through my team Cabral’s Crusaders!!!! All in a WEEK! To say I am amazed by all of the wonderful people in my life is an understatement.

When I first received this diagnosis, I naturally questioned “Why is this happening to me?” “What did I do to deserve this?” While is still ask these questions daily, this IS happening and I have to make something good come from it. Something that one day my kids can look back on and be proud of. Maybe I can raise awareness of this awful disease.

SO. Here are some facts on Metastatic Breast Cancer: (from MBCN.org)

1. No one dies from breast cancer that remains in the breast. Metastasis occurs when cancerous cells travel to a vital organ and that is what threatens life.

2. Metastasis refers to the spread of cancer to different parts of the body, typically the bones, liver, lungs and brain. ( in my case, it is the Bones)

3. An estimated 155,000 Americans are currently living with metastatic breast cancer. Metastatic breast cancer accounts for approximately 40,000 deaths annually in the U.S.

4. Treatment for metastatic breast cancer is lifelong and focuses on control of the disease and quality of life.

5. About 6% to 10% of people are Stage IV from their initial diagnosis. ( i am in this group)

6. Early detection does not guarantee a cure. Metastatic breast cancer can occur 5, 10 or 15 years after a person’s original diagnosis and successful treatment checkups and annual mammograms.

7. 20% to 30% of people initially diagnosed with early stage disease will develop metastatic breast cancer.

8. Young people, as well as men, can be diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer.

9. Like early stage breast cancer, there are different types of metastatic breast cancer.

10. Treatment choices are guided by breast cancer type, location and extent of metastasis in the body, previous treatments and other factors.

11. Metastatic breast cancer is not an automatic death sentence. Although most people will ultimately die of their disease, some will live for many years. (Hopefully MANY, MANY years)

12. There are no definitive prognostic statistics for metastatic breast cancer. Every patient and their disease is unique.

13. To learn more about National Metastatic Breast Cancer Awareness Day on October 13 and to access resources specifically for people living with metastatic breast cancer and their caregivers, visit www.mbcn.org.