Wendy Kozel – { I have never asked, “Why me?”}

So here’s the M.O. for today’s #metsmonday story.  “She Kicks Ass” .  I am so enamored by Wendy’s story.  She’s a “badass” with METS.  She lives, and thrives.  I also love her no nonsense responses.  She knows what she’s about.

Enjoy!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

IMG_0025

Can you share with our readers what your life was like before you were diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer and how you got to the stage IV diagnosis?

After my husband and I were both survived stage IIIB cancers (colon/breast) for 5 1/2 years I experienced severe pain in my right arm. Our son was now 12 and the diagnosis was stage IV breast cancer encased in the entire humerus. This was 2010.

What is your official diagnosis?

Dx now IDC ER/PR+ HER2+ mets to bone, shoulder, chest lymph system and lungs. Kadcyla every 3 weeks with Zometa every 3 months.

How has cancer changed your life?

I have discovered myself as well as the true meaning of life. Giving back and advocacy have become my passion.

IMG_0066
One of many fundraisers for MBC.

How do you live your best life now, thriving with a metastatic diagnosis?

Being as mindful and active as I possible can be. Nutrition and exercise are a daily focus.

What makes you most happy, and where do you find the most joy?

Helping other brings me the greatest joy as well as still being able to enjoy my family.

People mean well, but often they don’t know what to say, so they say the WRONG thing. What is the worst thing someone has said to you?

 “What happened. I though you were cured in 2010 after 5 years. How many more treatments do you have left?”

IMG_20150406_055514

What did or do you find most helpful for those wanting to encourage or help you?

Participating or organizing advocacy with me.

Do you feel that those of us living with metastatic disease are overlooked by the pink tide of awareness for early stage cancer in October? How would you change that?

Metastatic disease is not openly discussed, not even in the medical community. It is the pink elephant in the room therefore p there is much ignorance out there. Connecting with other metastatic patients and the utilization of social media has been an effective tool to start spreading the word. We need to band together so a louder voice as one is heard to change large organizations like Komen and the government.

IMG_0044

 

What do you want people to know about YOU and your life living with this disease?

I have never asked “Why me.” There is a reason for everything so I take my cues from my body, soul, doctors and research to move and enjoy every moment.

Do you think our cure is near? Or what one scientific advancement in the treatment of MBC do you find most encouraging.

I feel more advances in contains cancer growth is near (similar to HIV). A cure is still distant as cancer is so complex and individualized.

What is one “action” point everyone could do TODAY to promote awareness of MBC? 

 Cancer is not a battle and therefore, should not be treated in this manner. Once diagnosed we all could be metastatic at some point so we need to keep spreading knowledge.

Do you have a favorite poem, song, quote, or work of art that you would like to share with us? 

“EXPECTATIONS BREED LIMITATIONS” 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Wendy is selling shirts for the MBC cause.  If you would like one, please contact her for more information.  Her email is wendykozel@gmail.com.

IMG_0011

What an inspiration.  Right?  Thank you Wendy for sharing your story.  Thank you for not giving in…and thank you for not giving up.

I am not taking more stories for 2015, but if you would like to be a part of the #voicesofMBC 2016 line up, please respond to the link below.  Our voices are being heard.  We need to be louder in 2016.  I will keep being consistent….you keep your stories coming.

contact me 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s