My name is Aislinn Andrews and I am a 29-year-old secondary breast cancer patient. I was diagnosed with primary breast cancer in December 2005 at 26-years-of-age; Stage 3, HER-2 positive, Oestrogen Receptor positive, very agressive. After two years of conventional treatment (chemotherapy, radiotherapy, hormone treatment and the removal of my right breast and right underarm lymph nodes), it returned.
I was diagnosed with secondary breast cancer in the lymph, Stage 4, in November 2007, at 28-years-of-age. After 18 months of alternative treatment (using sodium bicarbonate therapy, which I’ve since learned is only a Stage 2 cancer treatment, but it still definitely slowed the cancer’s growth) and an operation in Milan to remove the tumours from my remaining right-breast tissue and left underarm lymph-nodes, I was in remission again. Or so I thought.
In May this year, I was diagnosed with secondary breast cancer in the lymph, liver and lungs, although the lungs now seem to be clear. CT error I think. One doctor gave me six months to live – if I did nothing, or continued with the current treatment which wasn’t working. Life-changing news indeed.
This blog was originally created to keep my friends and family updated on my progress on my cancer journey. It’s about my search for other alternative treatments – true Stage 4 cancer treatments, staying positive, crazy diet changes, other lifestyle changes, battling fatigue, getting closer to family, and countless doctor’s appointments. I aim to update this blog weekly, but during treatment, this may not be possible.
Most people say I’m too young to go through this. But I fear when I hit 30 in a couple of months, the ‘young’ part of this blog’s title will no longer be relevant. Although, you’re only as old as you feel. As for the breastless part, I don’t actually feel like I’m missing a body part. Me and my prosthesis pal, Bob the fake boob, we get on alright. I also like the Buddhist and Yogic way of thinking; that you are not your body or your mind. As spirits, we cannot die, but will exist always, going through various reincarnations until we reach enlightenment. But enough preaching.
What you are reading is in fact the results of my ‘therapy’. Creative writing is a good way to process your emotions, so they say. Apart from the domain hosting of this blog (set up and paid for by my good friend John, thank you), the writing part of it is free. A good thing too when you have doctors’ bills coming out of your ears!