LUNG FORCE Heroes
I'm 38 years old and have been surviving a stage 4 lung cancer diagnosis since June 2014. So much of lung cancer advocacy has been about smoking cessation, but I'm here to tell you that non-smokers get lung cancer too!
Lung cancer has impacted by life in so many ways. First of all, at 35 years old when I was diagnosed, I was naive to how deadly this disease was. Like you maybe, I have friends and family who have gotten cancer, beat cancer, and are living very well after cancer. The statistics for lung cancer were shocking though! This thing could kill me. That's not exactly how I envisioned my path in this world ending. I have three young boys - 9, 7, and 5 yrs old. Those guys love me a lot and give me a lot to live for.
I've also benefited greatly from advances in treatment that have come in just the last 5-10 years. I have an ALK Positive form of non-small cell lung cancer that responds miraculously to several of the new pill-based chemotherapies. This has undoubtedly bought me time, but we really need to push for funding research for others who's mutation drivers are yet unknown.
I keep my story current with a blog that you can find here.
First published: November 2, 2017
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Hero stories are the point of view of the Hero and not necessarily the American Lung Association. The Lung Association does not endorse any specific provider, facility or treatment.