Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Keep Praying

Hey all, this is Mary's sister, sorry it took me so long to get on here! Mary is still having quite a time today. She felt terrible last night and threw up most of the night and more today. Dan took her to St Joseph to get her shot and they also gave her some IV fluids and a patch for nausea, she is sleeping now and we sure hope she is better when she wakes up! Her boss called me this afternoon and I think she will try to get ahold of Mary and tell her to stay home until she feels better, THANKS so much Staci. Fr. Emil Kapaun Please KO the beast and heal my baby sis COMPLETELY, AMEN! Please pray hard that tomorrow is a better day and she will have that sparkle back in her eye, also pray for strength for Dan, he is doing an awesome job taking care of her and the kids. Thanks so much for checking on Mary and hopefully she will feel like posting before long!

Monday, September 28, 2009


This is Mary's sister, as you all can imagine we ALL were ready for round four to be done and was praying real hard that Mary would dance through it! Dan just called and Mary is already feeling nauseated and just plain wiped out. Please pray hard that they can give her some medicine to get her comfortable. I just hate seeing her like this but I also know that it means the Chemo is working and getting the beast out of her body. I will try to let you know how things are going tomorrow or heck maybe she will feel good enough to do a post herself. OK prayer warriors, she is done with the AC and now in a couple weeks she will start the T and she will have twelve weeks in a row of it, lets pray hard that those twelve weeks go smooth! Fr. Emil Kapaun PLEASE KO the Beast and heal my baby sis COMPLETELY, AMEN! Thanks so much for checking on her and please keep Mary, Dan and the kids in your prayers.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Genetic Testing Results

I received word today that the results of my Genetic Test are NEGATIVE! YEAH!!! I am getting ready to celebrate with some wine...OK, Strawberry Hill...remembering the good ol' days. My worries are now gone...worries about my Mother, Siblings, Nieces, Nephews, Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, and most of all My Children. So glad! So happy! Time to celebrate a victory!

I am also preparing for another Friday Night Bulldog Football game. The boys did not win last week and have another fierce competitor this week. Not sure how well you know me, but I want you to know that even though I do refer to Wins and Losses...a Win in my book is not simply outscoring the opponent. Winners hold their head high, give 110%, and fight to the finish! That is what I look for in every competitor! I will be looking for that kind of victory tomorrow night!

Victory is My Only Option...I will hold my head high, give 110%, and fight to the finish!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

The Results Are In

Hey All!! Can’t let the gals have all of the fun…it’s Crock’s (Mary's Big Brother's) turn to post.

The highly anticipated results of the extremely competitive golf outing are in!! Sorry I did not post quicker…took me that long to get our scorecard added up. The competition was fierce…the teams were loaded with ringers from all corners of the nation...

I will echo Mary’s thoughts…WOW!!! We can’t begin to thank everyone enough for all of the hard work & support that went into the planning and execution of the day. Sponsors, helpers, friends, family, golfers & those who were unable to attend that kept us in their prayers…it would not have happened without each and every one of you!!!

Here are the results…

We ended up with 31 teams in the morning and 31 in the afternoon. The morning flight was cut short due to time constraints. A Big Thank You to the golfers for your patience and understanding…it is very much appreciated!!


Morning Flight

61 – Shane Sims
63 – Chris Henry, Rod VanNordstrand
65 – Sullins/Peterson
67 – Kim Feldkamp #1, Curt Maughan
68 – Huey Heflin, Bob Hedinger
69 – Brian Schmitz #1
70 – George Bliley, Adam Wiederholt, Clint Ross, Kellie Bergman, Brian
Schmitz #2, Shelly Deen #2, Kim Feldkamp #2
71 – Vick Adams #2, Jeff Farnan, Brett McQuinn, Tim Tobin, Kenny
Schieber, Dennis Henry
72 - Vick Adams #1, Team Walter, Kevin Archer, Mike Cameron, Deb
Schieber, Shane Hilton, Troy Greenfield, Lori Smothers, Shelly Deen #1

Afternoon Flight
**We still have one team under investigation for recruiting violations, apparently Granny Henry was picked up at the last minute & then posted a 62…kinda fishy...

62 – Don Edwards **(not confirmed, still under investigation for recruiting violations)
63 – Don Combe, Lloyd Bliley
64 – Team Walter
65 – Team Buffalo
66 – Renee Sturm
67 – Kenny Henry, Larry Jones
68 – David Law
69 – Josh Schieber
70 – Jeremy McQueen, Rhonda Carroll, Mike Wilmes
72 – Kevin Schieber, Mitch Holtman, Bryce Nielson, Brad Wilmes,
Frampton #1, Frampton #2, Ronnie Stoll, Kara Mattson, Josh McMillin,
Denise Bracken, Cyndi Henry, Andy Schieber, Team Borey/Healy,
Todd Jacobson, Karri Schieber, Deb Schieber, Marty Wilmes

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Words Cannot Express...

WOW!!! I'M SPEECHLESS!!! What an Awesome Day! Words Cannot Express our Gratitude! Thank You So Much to Each and Everyone of You for your generosity and support as I continue this fight against breast cancer.

To My Wonderful Family and Friends that coordinated the fun-filled event...I LOVE YOU GUYS!

To those of you that pitched in and helped in various ways to pull-off the unbelievable day...THANK YOU FROM THE BOTTOM OF MY HEART!

To all of you that shared in the blessed day with us...YOU ARE MY MOTIVATION!

Victory is My Only Option!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Round 3 Chemo - KO...FINALLY!!!

Whew!!! I took some major punches and maybe even a knock-down or two; but with the support of family and friends, I think I finally landed a KO this round. I had a rough day yesterday and could not keep anything down. I felt miserable and my skin hurt...it was a strange sensation. A long-time friend of the family lives just a few minutes from my work and she graciously opened her home to me so that I could crash yesterday afternoon. I did not even put up a fight when my sister and brother wanted to come to St. Joe and drive me home. Several in the family helped with our kids and cleaned our house. So, I did not have any worries! I was able to rest! Today continued to get better and better and I feel so much better now.

I am ready for the family and friend filled weekend...Friday Night Football (cheering for another W), Saturday Bearcat Tailgate and Football, Saturday Night Nodaway County Relay for Life (I will proudly be wearing purple in the Survivor Lap), and Sunday Golf Outing! I am welling with tears as we prepare for Sunday. I am very overwhelmed with the outpouring of generosity! I have such a feeling of guilt; but I am SOOOOO EXCITED to see family and friends.


Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Rough Day!

Hello all, This is Mary's sister Theresa. Have I told you all lately CANCER SUCKS, Mary did have her third chemo treatment on Monday and it is trying to knock her on her butt but we aren't going to let that happen! She has been pretty sick today and is even going to let us come and pick her up from work! Please pray extra hard that she gets over this real soon and is ready for the Golf Benefit on Sunday, she is really looking forward to seeing everyone and I know many of you need to see for yourself that she is hanging in there, doing great and still has that beautiful smile and sparkle in her eye! Thanks so much for checking on her and she just really enjoys hearing from all of her prayer warriors. Fr. Emil Kapaun PLEASE PLEASE KO that beast and Heal my baby sis COMPLETELY! AMEN!
Thanks again for everything and we can't wait to see you all on Sunday!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Gotta Have Fun

Bulldogs were victorious again last night! Another thriller that ended early due to the mercy rule. Unfortunately, the STATE officials were on the sideline observing the officiating crew so there was more penalty yards than actual yardage I think. It was so frustrating...cannot imagine what the boys felt like!

In preparation for the game this week, I decided to have a little (OK, a lotta) fun with my bald head. I talked to a friend at work and she agreed to paint my head for the football game. It was so fun it may become a weekly ritual, but I am afraid it may get too cold one of these weeks. We'll see...


Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Genetic Testing Today

Today I completed the testing portion of the genetic pre-disposition. Surprisingly, they hope to have results within 2-4 weeks. Originally, they told us it would take 2 months for results. It was a very interesting session and we learned lots of details.

The genetic counselor created a color-coded family tree based on the data we submitted. She laughed and told us normally the information fits on one page...mine is an 8 page banner. Her personal assessment is my family (Father's and Mother's) is very fortunate to not have more cancer simply based on pure numbers. She ran our family data through 3 different genetic breast cancer models and summarized there is a 5-7% chance that my breast cancer is genetic. They performed a simple blood draw today and will test 2 breast cancer genes (BRCA1 and BRCA2). Within the 2 genes, they will look for missing DNA, DNA in the wrong sequence or abnormal DNA. If they discover something wrong with the DNA in either gene, my breast cancer will be genetic in nature. I did learn that even though the cancer could be genetic, something else (the unknown...environmental, lifestyle, etc) still occurs to affect the good gene and cause the cancer. Each of us has 2 BRCA1 genes...one from Father and one from Mother. Only one gene is affected due to genetics. However, both genes have to be affected for the cancer cells to grow. I always thought it was purely genetics, but there is still some "bad luck" involved.

What does all this mean to me and why am I doing this? For me personally, if my breast cancer is genetic there will be discussions about some preventative surgical procedures. Also, we will know to have my children (girls and Bo) tested at the age of 18 and we will keep a close eye on my girls and begin mammograms at the age of 25. Each child has a 50% chance of having the bad gene if I test positive. If it is genetic, they will offer testing to my mother, my brothers, my sister, my aunts and my uncles. The counselor informed us that some people do not want to know and the testing is all voluntary. The testing only involves the 2 breast cancer genes they know about today.

It was a very interesting session. I am patiently awaiting the results!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Who Needs Hair, Anyway?!?

I decided Dan has been able to pull this off for 10+ years, so I should be able to do so for a few months! It's Gone! We had our own, little "Shave Mary's Hair Off" party last night...just Dan and Me. Dan finished with the razor and shaving cream at 2 AM. Not only is the man a perfectionist at his woodworking projects, he is a perfectionist at shaving.

At one point last night, I could not take it any longer! I could feel the hair falling on my shoulders and neck and it was driving me insane. When we were finally settling down for the night, I told Dan it was the first thing on the agenda for today, but he could not wait that long. It actually made my night, because now I do not have to worry about the hair. Other worries, maybe...probably, but no more bad hair days! And, I still got the biggest smile out of Baby Bo this morning, so he still knows who I am...hair or no hair!

Friday Night Football Update...the Bulldogs won easily and we were sent home at half-time due to the point spread. The boys, as an entire team, are hitting harder than I ever remember. We have always had stand-outs in the past, but this is a genuine team effort and everyone seems to take their part! I feel for the opponents on the receiving end, but I enjoy every tackle! Just "Put Me In Coach...I'm Ready to Play!" I really think I'd love to do it...just once!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Weepy Wednesday, Better Today

I feel better than I did after Round 1 and my feet do not hurt at all this time, but my emotions are nearly out of control. I tried to tell my friends and co-workers to simply ignore me yesterday at work. It was simply Weepy Wednesday! I am thinking it is the timely combination of the book and my hair actually starting to fall out Wednesday morning. The bottom of the shower was sprinkled with black hair and I could feel the hair fall on my shoulders as I styled it yesterday. Exactly what I was hoping for...UNTIL it became real. Every day is just more and more real and every day I am ready to fight and fight harder! The hair continues to thin today and Dan was excited to get the "buzzer" and take care of it, but I am hoping to get a few more days out of it...hopefully the hair will make it through the crazy, jam-packed, event-filled weekend!

The shirts are awesome and you can e-mail me at dcollins@grm.net to place an order. They are selling YS (2-4) to 3X sizes. The pink and black are available in all sizes. The granite grey is in adult sizes only. The ash grey is in youth sizes only. The shirts are $12 each and $14 for 2X and 3X. They are hoping to place an order immediately after Labor Day.

Wishing everyone a Safe Holiday Weekend! Hope to see some of you at the Jefferson Reunion!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Girl Power

This is my Support Structure...

Not sure where I would be without my Mother, my Big Sister, and My Beautiful Daughters! They have taken extra special care for me and my family since day one. Together, we have a lot of Girl Power and we are Fighters!

I was surprised with the Fight Like A Girl shirts that were created by my department co-workers and friends at Heartland and given to us. We are modeling them in the pictures above...they are awesome. Daddy and Bo have shirts too. Maggie was a little concerned about Bo wearing pink, but we convinced her it was OK because Daddy has the same shirt and the shirt is for Mommy's Cancer. The gang at work is currently selling them and I hear they are selling like crazy.

Malia brought home a special book from Mrs. Swinford's Library tonight. Titled Hair For Mama by Kelly A. Tinkham. Mrs. Swinford warned me it would be a tear-jerk er and it is. At one point, Malia looked at me and said, "Is THAT what you are going to look like?" This is all tough for little kids to understand. Heck, it is even tough for me to understand sometimes. So far, I have been so blessed to have my support structure in place and they, along with Dan, take my place during the tired, weak days and my kids do not even notice a difference. As far as my kids are concerned, they do not think or know that Mommy is sick and I hope to keep it that way. We will deal with the "No Hair For Mama" thing whenever that happens.