About Me

I have been fighting Ovarian cancer since 1998. The type I have is known as Granulosa Cell Tumor (GCT). It’s a rare form of Ovarian cancer that had no known treatment other than surgery at that time. It usually occurs in older women who have been in menopause,usually is benign and once removed takes several years to recur. In cases like mine, began to manifest itself prior to age 30, it is referred to as Juvenile GCT. I have never been in remission. New tumors usually began to grow within months of surgery. This has caused me to have several surgeries over the past 13 years. However, cancer does not define me.

I am a dog lover. My puppy Jake is now 4-years-old. Jake is a Flat Coat Retriever/Shepherd mix, so his coat isn’t very flat. He is like my child. He doesn’t realize he is a dog. That’s him in the header photo when he first came home. Sabrina is a Husky/Shepherd mix we adopted. She was 7-years-old then and that was five years ago.

I love taking pictures,but haven’t done a lot of photography lately as I have been undergoing cancer treatment for the past year. I love horses, watching the waves roll in at a beach, watching the beautiful sunsets over the lake by my house  and shopping. I don’t have children because the cancer caused me to miscarry my first and only child. However, I am a wife, a sister,  a daughter and an aunt. My niece Kat lives with me and my husband Russell. I have a tendency to somewhat spoil her. She doesn’t get everything she wants, but has more than she probably needs. I jokingly tell her from time to time, “I may not have given birth to you, but you are definitely my brat!”

I tend to hold a lot in. Sometimes I smile on the outside while falling apart on the inside, but it’s only because I am trying to protect my family. I can be temperamental. Partially to blame is my family history and the fact I haven’t let go of some things. And, the other part is that my cancer is hormonal; the tumors produce estrogen. My doctor told my husband it was like PMS x 100.

Well that’s me in a nutshell.  Thanks for taking the time to get to know me.

4 thoughts on “About Me

  1. I dont know if you are still on here but I am 37 and 3 years ago I had a GCT removed and my left ovary. Mine had also been missed and I was told I had pcos. a common mistake I now know. after surgery I began the monthly exams and blood tests that I still go to today. my inhibin b is not a great indicator though so I range anywhere from 10-85 sometimes. so now I will have a hysterectomy this September. I have never really had anyone my age to relate to as far as this goes. I know no one else who has had a GCT. I hope I hear back from you. also I hope you are staying strong. my name is Jessica

    • Hi Jessica, On a good note more is known about GCT then it was 15 years ago. More research is being done. I personally have never been in remission, but then again my doctors didn’t know how to treat me. So I just lived until the tumors got to big and had to have surgery. The same happened this time, so I have several large tumors right now spread throughout my abdomen, I was just used to not going in until the last minute. However, I was able to start being seen at MD Anderson in Houston and finally had some other choices other than another, 6th, surgery. I have been treated with carboplatin and taxol, and lupron without success. Avastin shrunk my tumors 20% over a year but I started to spill protein from my kidneys and then had a hernia that had to be repaired. I had several complications healing from that, so I was removed from the study. I went without treatment for a year because my body and my mind had to heal. I just recently had my first treatment of BEP, go back Monday for second round. If your doctor is not familiar with GCT, maybe he can consult with MD Anderson. My doctor is Dr. Jubilee Brown at MD Anderson. Originally it was Dr Burke he is the head of Oncology Gyno Dept, but Dr. Brown was doing the Avastin study and I have been under her since 2011. I try to stay positive and not let the cancer get to me too much. I keep faith in God and his will to keep me sane. I like to think that by doing this people can say I lived with cancer but it never beat me. Keep me posted about how you are doing.

  2. Hello, I’m so excited to hear from you and that you are staying positive. I am going to look into MD Anderson and see if that might help me find more answers. I have been talking to the Granulosa toumor research centre from new zealand and it has been great being in contact with them also. you might want to look them up also. you will stay sane. I will be praying for you. I will write more soon. you take care.

  3. Hi Becca and Jessica … I just came across your blog accidentally, Becca, while doing a search on GCT and Avistan for a friend. I, too, have had many surgeries – my most recent (4th) this past September. I have not had any treatments other than surgery and my oncologist and I both agree that surgery is the best option for me at the present time.

    It is always wonderful to chat with other ladies with GCT and I wondered if either of you had heard of the group “Living with GCT”? Here is the link …. http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group/Living_with_GCT/?v=1&t=directory&ch=web&pub=groups&sec=dir&slk=61

    I have learned a lot about alternate treatments by following conversations in this group and sometimes all of the information can be overwhelming. But the gals are open and honest about their experiences and that can be extremely valuable when faced with a doctor’s recommendations for specific treatments.

    I look forward to reading your blog, Becca, and wish you much luck in your search for information, Jessica!! Take care ladies ….. my blog address is listed below if you are interested. 🙂

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