Hope begins in the dark

Well, this post isn’t what I hoped to be writing today.

After 4 ½ years of champagne celebrations following clear scans – today we got the news we knew would come eventually.  Progression.

I have a new spot in my left femur and growth on my right hip.  There it is.

In a way we have been preparing for this news for 4 ½ years.  So, it doesn’t knock me down as hard as one might expect.  First, because – the cancer is still limited to my bones (no organ involvement), these spots are not causing me pain and are small.  Second, there are treatment options to try.  There are drugs that were in clinical trials when I was diagnosed metastatic almost 5 years ago that have proven effective in hormone receptive cancer – so we have options.  Also, looking at possibility of radiation.  The fear is that the cancer becomes resistant to hormone therapy.   But, we aren’t jumping to that yet.

I learned this news sipping on green tea in Starbucks – preparing to board a plane to Michigan for the marriage of two high school friends.  I cried some ugly tears with Jay on the phone. I talked with the boys and boarded the plane.

Because, life. 

That’s the whole point.   Isn’t it?  To celebrate, love and live.  We aren’t letting this derail our life.  We are going to take the information as information, make a plan, and treat it. Sitting home and crying doesn’t help anything.  (Certainly not as much as a walk in the northern Michigan woods, laughing about 1993 hairstyles and celebrating love). I feel strong and healthy. This news doesn’t change that.

Talking to the boys was the hardest part.  As I spoke with Bennett I listened to my own words.  I told him this is a new chapter in our story.  It’s ok to cry and be scared.  There will be changes for our family in this chapter – this new medicine might make me tired or sick.  But, this chapter isn’t written yet so worrying about that now doesn’t help anything.  We get to write this chapter just like each chapter of our beautiful adventure leading us to today.  The story hasn’t been all happiness and joy.  But, the narrative is uniquely ours.  And in its entirety is a great story.

If you’d like to do something to support me – join me for Colors of Courage on October 5th.  More than ever, this gathering to support Hope Scarves will be about love, connection, storytelling and hope… These past couple hours as I processed this news I have repeatedly thought about Emily – our featured storyteller for Colors of Courage this year.  Her strength and steadfast grace in the face of debilitating treatments and devastating news lights my way.  Come to hear her story.   And stay to celebrate the power of connection, compassion and hope.  Even in the darkest days.

If you can’t be with us Friday– join us online – bid on the auction – we have a lot of great stuff (big green egg, beats headphones, week at a cottage in lake Michigan and much more).  Or, support or MBC Research Fund.  Our goal is to raise $50,000 for research Friday. Because research is what made this new drug possible for me.  I’ve always said, I am making my body as healthy as possible to hang on for science.   More than ever, I am dedicated to accelerating research and supporting scientists who work to extend patients’ lives.

I’m grateful for the support and encouragement I’ve received over the past 11 years.  And, specifically the past 4 ½ years with MBC.  And, today. One thing is certain, I have never felt alone.  I am carried by your prayers, hugs, light and love.   Thank you.

Loving life, living each day to the fullest.  Even today.

With hope,

17 replies
  1. Laurie Morgan
    Laurie Morgan says:

    My prayers are with you. Just today at the cancer center I saw the Do you have a hope scarf. I do. It made me smile. Fight hard! Girls are tough. New drugs are always being discovered. I have breast cancer but my brother has pancreatic cancer. Chemo was no longer effective and just the Keytruda was approved. He was told he wouldn’t live till Thanksgiving 2017 but now we are planning Thanksgiving 2018! What a miracle! Praying all cancer patients get their miracle!

  2. Cam Murray Fink
    Cam Murray Fink says:

    Thank you for all you do, you are an inspiration to all you meet. Prayers and good wishes you you and your family. Much love and a big hug.

  3. Connie Hodge
    Connie Hodge says:

    As a person living with cancer (lung cancer) I completely understand how you’re feeling. I heard your story 4 years ago at a Women’s Survivor Conference in Nashville when I visited your booth. I’ve followed Hope Scarves & your journey ever since. I continue to pray for you, your family & organization.

  4. Sheryl Storrie
    Sheryl Storrie says:

    Im so sorry Lara… But you are a fighter who I know can push a few more yrs at the very least because we need you to be here to help others just starting your journey. Your job is not done yet on this earth. That I know in my heart is true.
    Friends forever ❤️

  5. Mae
    Mae says:

    I am sorry to hear your cancer has returned. I can’t imagine how you feel right now. I have had family members with cancer so I know the anxiety of hearing that diagnosis..When my husband was diagnosed with NHL, I went into panic mode and stayed in it thru his chemo and passing and am still suffering a type of PSTD so it is true that it affects the whole family. May God be with you on your journey and give wisdom to your Drs..

  6. Joy Apostol
    Joy Apostol says:

    Love your beautiful hopeful words…and I always look ahead with hope….with the grace and guidance of love, family, and friends. You are an inspiration my beautiful cousin….

  7. Natalie Officer
    Natalie Officer says:

    I rarely have the right words. But, I have you for that ;), and you have all my love. Supporting you and CofC in the best way we can and research too. Your stuck with us girl!! Xoxo

  8. Celeste Massie
    Celeste Massie says:

    Your strength, hope, and resilience is always inspiring. I was diagnosed in May with a 2nd leukemia. That makes 2 kinds of thyroid cancer and now 2 leukemias. Evidently, I do cancer in pairs. Telling my kids that I had to spend almost a month in the hospital in May was very difficult, but they too are braver and stronger than even they realize. We walk this path with those we love and Christ by our side. My doc wants stem cell transplant, Vanderbilt said no too risky. Going to MD Anderson possibly for a 3rd opinion. I ,like you, am not only filling my cup with green tea but with love, hope, and joy. I have spent the last two weeks having lunch and dinner with close friends, spending special time with my kids and husband, teaching kids at Awana about Christ, trying to find someone to buy or invest in my company, resting and praying. With a full cup, it is much easier to face a new harsher chemo on Monday. Obtaining a balance between treating and over treating is always difficult. Finding the safest path with the least toxicity sometimes takes several opinions to light the way. May you enjoy the love, laughter, and memories of yesterday at your friends wedding and create new ones as well. Today is most definitely a “present”. Wishing you peace, confidence in your decisions, and blessings with your children as you face
    the new challenges of this journey. ❤️🎁

  9. Amy Goldstein Chauvin
    Amy Goldstein Chauvin says:

    Always thinking of you Lara and how you are living your life. You are such an inspiration to all who know you and even those who don’t! Love Amy

  10. Sue Klasing
    Sue Klasing says:

    Your beautiful message in the midst of your latest results is inspiring to so many. God bless you for the hope you spread everywhere you go.

  11. Mary Lynn Moore
    Mary Lynn Moore says:

    Hello, as I read this small tear fell on my hand as I just got my news of my last 4 mo check today, CA-125 is 24 & normal. The waiting is hard but you just put one foot in front of the other, & live your life not your cancer. Your much braver than me Lara, I pray for you everyday, & whatever treatment you choose—God’s got this & wrapping his arms around you.

  12. Robin Kieper
    Robin Kieper says:

    Your words are always spoken so eloquently, but that’s you…..eloquent, inspiring, always hopeful and full of life. You always put your faith bigger than your fear. Know that myself, Doug and our family are holding you close to our hearts and praying for you and your family. Hugs.


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