Oh, Great Crappy Day!

14 04 2011

Today, I felt physically horrible. Yet, great things happened.

Physically horrible because not only are my white blood cell counts down — which meant Don has had to give me shots of Neupogen the past two nights, the injection that helps my white counts to recover, but makes every bone and muscle in my body ache in the process.

This Chemo Round, there’s also the added complication of a low Hemoglobin count. Tuesday’s chemo was a game-time decision; the doctors considered my counts before finally deciding to go ahead with my infusions. I was given an extra infusion of a drug called Procrit on Tuesday along with my standard chemotherapy drugs, in the hopes that my counts will recover and I will not need a transfusion.

But speaking of great things, I was humbled and deeply touched by the number of people who stepped forward yesterday and today to offer to roll up their sleeves and donate their blood for me, in case I do need a transfusion. Don’t ever bother to tell me there aren’t a lot of wonderful, giving people in the world, because I won’t believe you. Not for a second. I’ve seen way too much to the contrary to ever believe anything else.

And on to more great things — today, I heard from television, print, and radio media regarding upcoming interviews to help get the word out there about my story, the unlikelihood of this diagnosis after all of the preventative measures I took and the aggressive treatments I underwent, and the hope that this information will help to save lives, many lives through better methods of self-examination post-mastectomy as well as monitoring.

I have dreamed of starting a foundation for more than two decades. I wasn’t sure exactly what shape it would take, but I’ve always wanted to find a way to help people on a large scale. I think the pieces of the puzzle of just how that will happen in my life are beginning to fit together.

I had the good fortune to end up spending more than two decades as a financial writer/editor, which means I have acquired a good understanding of investment vehicles and how they work. My plan is to use this background down the road to manage the financial end of my foundation to help all donations and revenues to grow and thrive so that the funds can help as many people as possible.

I see the foundation as growing out of http://www.itsinthegenes.org in a multi-faceted way. I have big plans, many of which I am already moving from the planning stages into the actual implementation of the ideas.

It’s all, always, in God’s time. And He, no matter how confusing or difficult the circumstances in which you find yourself, is always right.

Copyright 2011, Amy Rauch Neilson

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18 responses

14 04 2011
CaroG87

WOW!!! I think a foundation is a wonderful thing! GO FOR IT!

14 04 2011
Lynn Shuck

Dear Amy,
I followed at first because of our mutual friend, Jen Nemeth. Then I followed because your writing is outstanding and because my mother had breast cancer and various grandmothers had reproductive cancers. Over the past year, several separate conversations have occured pushing me to somehow do more for breast cancer and it’s prevention, cure, care, and the people living with it. Now I see this post about a foundation you are hoping to start. Well, I have little money of my own to give, but am looking to start giving a portion of sales from my fiber business to cancer organizations somehow. I’d like to stay in touch with you as you get this foundation up and running and learn how to contribute.

Thank you for sharing your life with all us strangers.
~ Lynn

15 04 2011
Amy Rauch Neilson

Lynn,
What a generous heart you have! Yes, let’s keep in touch about this as it unfolds. But first I want to make sure I put all the pieces in place for the foundation so that it HAS a strong foundation and is created just the way it should be — legally and otherwise. I’ll be learning all I can about this in upcoming weeks/months and have lots of people who know the ropes who can help me — like Molly MacDonald from The Pink Fund!

14 04 2011
Molly MacDonald

Amy,

May I suggest we talk as you begin to think about starting a foundation and what kind of services it will offer . . . I hope to be able to help you avoid some of the landmines on which I stepped.

See you are already thinking of others, just as I did and you too will become a SurThrivor!

15 04 2011
Amy Rauch Neilson

Suggest? Honey, you are my Go-To Girl!

14 04 2011
nicole

Amy you’re so crazy inspiring i can hardly stand it!! It’s amazing to me that God gives you this strength to cheer on your cheerleaders like this! Here we are cheering you on, but you’re still the top of the pyramid! I only pray that I could have such grace when faced with such trials. luv ya bunches!

14 04 2011
Karen

Amen to that girl!!

14 04 2011
Cathy Carey

HI Amy, I remember those shots I never thought it was possible to have my bones literally ache until then.

The foundation idea is wonderful. At our breast care center we have multiple programs – a “slush” fund for women who fall through the cracks of our state mandated program and having insurance, an absolutely thriving Integrative Health Program which provides free acupuncture, jin shin jytsu, massage, guided imagery for all women with cancer. We’re especially proud of that program it started as a once a month clinic for breast cancer patients and now it’s weekly open to any woman with cancer. We also raised enough money to have a breast dedicated MRI in our Center. Something all of us on the Advisory Board are especially proud.

Just a few ideas you can bounce around in your head when your not plagued by the dreaded “chemo brain”.
Cathy

15 04 2011
Amy Rauch Neilson

I love it. Can we talk more?

15 04 2011
Michelle Hicks

Once again, you continue to amaze me! There is NOTHING that you cannot accomplish, that I am certain of…including living a long life to get the “it’s in the genes” empire as a household name! Hope you are feeling better soon!

15 04 2011
Tracey

Hi Amy! It’s a day after your post, so hopefully today you are feeling much better!! Amy you are such a Great Person with such a big heart! With all that you are going through, to sit and think of starting a Foundation to save lives on the large scale. As soon as you get more information on starting this foundation, let us know cause I am sure a lot of us would love to help.

15 04 2011
Amy Rauch Neilson

Will do, Tracey. I want to plan it carefully so that it can benefit the most people possible.

15 04 2011
Amy Rauch Neilson

Oh, and I’m taking any and all ideas as this unfolds! I love all the talents and insights my readers bring to the table! thankyou thankyou thankyou!

15 04 2011
Laurie Horn

Amy you are an amazing woman! I’d like to help in some way if I can. Let’s keep in touch.

15 04 2011
Anne

I don’t post a lot, but I religiously read your blog posts. You are an amazing woman and to be sure, you are in my prayers. I don’t know much about foundations, other than how to contribute. Keep us posted as to where and when!

Take care — and I am rooting for you!!

Anne

15 04 2011
Jennifer Fink

Amy, you are an amazing woman. When you get your foundation up and running — or if you need assistance getting the word out, etc. — let me know. I’m behind you 100% on this venture.

15 04 2011
Carol Phillips

Amy remember With God all things are possible. He will walk you through the red tape, and complications of starting a foundation and open doors. God’s will with your passion NOTHING is impossible!

15 04 2011
Kimberly Brown

Amy, I have wished that when I went through my diagnosis, treatment, and ongoing aftercare….that there had been someone who followed me….who could help interpret the med-speak, and who could be the shoulder I needed so often, and still do. I think all women diagnosed should have a dedicated case manager….to do all the things above….and be the “person”….not the doc, surgeon, radiologist, plastic surgeon, etc…..a coordinator to be “your” person, your “human being”, and your information go to person for immediate and ongoing issues throughout your journey.
Best wishes….and hugs….
Kim

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