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My Six-Year Cancer-Free Anniversary


Hi blogger buddies-Hope everyone is well on this St. Patrick's day eve.  I felt compelled to write tonight because St. Patrick's day is one of my favorite holiday's.  I don't have a lot of Irish in me but I have always enjoyed celebrating on this day.  Usually my twin sister and her two kids and I, go to a cute little home-town parade in Hopkins.  The people in town always joke about how quick and small the parade is and say, "If you blink you'll miss it."  It's true-it really is that fast and small but it means a lot to all of us as a community.  Many of the local store owners are in the parade and throw out candy and flyers that advertise their store.  It's just a fun way of getting out of the house after a long winter.  I have also made it tradition to go out for corn beef and cabbage on St. Patty's day.  My twin sister and I plan to meet for lunch tomorrow and do the (all- you- can- eat) thing.

The family (Laura, Jacob and Ellie)is planning a big celebration for me tomorrow night because I will be six years cancer-free.  In February of 2004, I was diagnosed with lung cancer despite the fact that I have Never smoked. It was one of the scariest ordeals I have ever faced.  My faith, family and a lot of support got me through it.  I know it was really scary for my twin sister Laura.  I think she was afraid of the unknown and the fact that cancer might take me.  We're soo close that neither one of us can imagine life without the other.  She is my very best friend in the world.

When Laura got divorced in 04, she kept asking me to move in with her and the kids.  I had a really charming apartment in Wayzata and enjoyed my single life.  I kept telling her that I would move in eventually, but just not now.  She kept asking me everyday-"Linda, are you ready to move in with me and the kids yet?"  I kept saying no.  Then in March of 2004 when the doctor came in my hospital room and said, "I have bad news, your path report came back and showed that your cancer spread to two of your lymph nodes.  You are not a stage 1A like we thought but are stage 3A.  You have a 20-25% chance of surviving this within five years."  I felt like I was watching a movie-Could this really be happening to me?  Anyway, that day in March when Laura came to visit, I said: (half crying/half laughing)    "Laura, can I move in with you and the kids?"  Ever since that day, I never looked back and have lived here since.  Now I can't imagine not living with them.  My life is so rich and wonderful here.  I can't ask for more-helping my twin sister raise her children.  They give me such purpose!  So at midnite I am six years cancer-free. ! I would love to go tell that doctor that I beat the odds.
Have a Great St. Patrick's Day everyone- I know I will!   P.S. If any of my blogger friends have a cancer survivor story to share, I would love to hear it.
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