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What do you remember about 1998? 
Take a minute to think about that.  For me, though I didn’t know it at the time, there was something very significant in 1998 that saved my life.  

CLICK HERE to hear why 1998 was important and a large reason why I’m still alive, and why my boys still have a mom!
We want to share news & information with you and for you!
  • Join My Cancer Family with YOUR STORIES to help others
  • Where were you in 1998? Why is that relevant today and why every dollar and every NON-Profit matters!
  • Free programs just for you!
  • YOU DESERVE BETTER!  Tips from a Survivor!
MEETING My Cancer Family 
If you’re new to My Cancer Family and have missed the previous newsletters, please go to our link in our bio @mycancerfamily on Instagram to learn more about me, Denise Albert and the recent announcement of my Co-Founder, Colleen Sellers. We know we can support anyone on a cancer journey in ways a doctor doesn't or can't... (we love doctors, nurses and their teams, but they can't do everything!)
Sharing IS Caring!
Do you know that YOUR story WILL help others!
What got you through treatment?
(all of you…sharing, hearing from you. community, your wisdom and tips…)

Did you change your nutrition?
(I switched to almond and oat milk, mostly vegetarian, cut out soda….)

What beauty tips do you have?
(I learned how to put lashes on like a pro! Wigs can be your best friend….hats,hats,hats!)
What physical activity worked best for you?
( I went to spin when I could…the music and community made me feel like myself even though many days I barely broke a sweat and could barely peddle….I tried something new….Yoga and Pilates….A walk around the block sometimes is just perfect….Don’t beat yourself up!)
Giving All Around
This past weekend, I was honored to take part in The Jimmy V Foundations annual Wine Celebration in Yountville, CA.  The weekend raised almost 7 million dollars that goes directly to Cancer Research.  
Thanks to my friends at The Makers of SYLVANIA and WCPG, I was invited to speak and share my story to hopefully inspire others, and most importantly to connect with people who were there and may be inspired to donate.  
As you may know, some non-profits raise money directly for science.  Others offer help, free products or programs just for you.  Here’s a few you may not know about:
Unite for HER - Women with Ovarian and Women and Men with Breast Cancer can apply for a wellness program and receive a Wellness Passport valued at $2,000 of integrative therapies and services at NO personal cost.  Therapies include: Acupuncture, Yoga, Oncology Massage Therapy, Reiki, Sexual Health Counseling and more!

Wigs & Wishes - WIGS and WISHES by Martino Cartier is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing wigs and granting wishes to individuals battling cancer. Supporting such a large initiative is made possible by a network of participating salons, stylists and global corporate sponsorships. Salons and stylists throughout the world empower women battling cancer by providing them with complimentary services that allow them for a brief moment to forget about their fight.
You Deserve Better
Our friends at The Makers of SYLVANIA always say You Deserve Better.  For those of you going through a cancer journey, you deserve better every day and we know that support and tips from survivors help.
Last week we shared A few tips from a survivor named Mindy.  Mindy walked up to me on the playground of my son’s school and handed me a note after reading my story.  Her notes got me through treatment and now I want to share more of that with you.  Each week, we will be sharing from so many of you.  Remember a cancer journey is different for all and these tips won’t work for everyone!
MINDY'S Tips Continued!
  • Call your doctor whenever you need to.  I spoke with my onc at least twice a week for one thing or another.
  • When you go to chemo, wear a zip up sweatshirt, button down or low cut shirt, it will be easier to access the port.  I’m sure the hospital will be chilly, so bring something comfy and warm to wear.
Eating and Drinking
  • You will find that water tastes like dirt.  I can’t remember if it’s the AC or the Taxol that does it, but either way you’ll need to find something else to drink other than water.  Gatorade worked for me, but only certain flavors.  You’ll want to stock up on whatever you find you like and keep it cold.
  • When water does taste ok, drink A LOT!!!!!  You need to flush your body well.    Also, constipation is one of the worst side effects that I had. See side effects for more info
Side Effects
  • Constipation - it’s not your normal constipation where if you eat dried fruits you’re ok.  It’s the kind that you need an enema for.  I wish I knew this.  My doctor suggested just plain water enemas, they worked.
  • Chemo brain – it’s real and it sucks.  Your brain slows down, you can’t remember simple words, you forget things all the time.  Make lots of notes, keep a notebook, make lists.  It takes months after chemo for it to go away, and it never fully goes away.  I definitely have residual side effects
  • Dry mouth/mouth sores – get magic wash (Rx) as soon as you have symptoms.  It basically numbs your mouth so you can eat.  Also use toothpaste and rinse that’s for people with dry-mouth.  I used Biotene, made a big difference.  Also, get a very soft toothbrush, I used a soft electric one with a small head so as not to irritate my mouth.
  • Achy bones/joints – Taxol causes this and it doesn’t go away for months.  You feel like an old woman.  I can tell you for me it went away within 9 months.  Take pain meds if you need to
  • Nails separating from fingers – Taxol causes this.  You will need to be very careful to always wear gloves when washing dishes or bathing the kids.  I actually did not wash dishes or do bath time for weeks to protect my nails and also because of my hand/foot syndrome.  When your nails start to separate, make sure to cut them very, very short.  Buy Tea Tree oil (doesn’t smell very good) and apply it around your nails and underneath.  It prevents fungus from growing.  I had no issues as long as I kept my nails very short and kept them out of water as much as possible.
#1 Tip – let people help.  If someone offers to watch the kids or cook dinner or pick something up for you at the store, let them.  They want to help and it will make them feel better, and it will help you out.  Don’t feel like you’re a burden, people who love you don’t see it that way.  They see someone who is going through a rough time and needs help and sometimes the only way to show their support is to do something for you.  You will also be surprised about those that call, write, help, send gifts, etc.  And you will also be surprised about the people you don’t hear from.  There were friends from high school that I hadn’t seen since graduation, who sent us meals and there were close friends who never called, emailed or did anything.  Everyone reacts differently, so don’t take it personally, or take it as a sign that they don’t care.  Often, it’s that they are uncomfortable in the situation and don’t know what to do or say.  
A Place To Call Home During A Cancer Journey
As a reminder, or in case you are new to us, My Cancer Family will be the safe place to go for community, support, resources and help…Everything from getting to the right non-profit that offers FREE programs to helping with nutrition to tutorials for how to put on eyelashes, to sharing wisdom we learned (like why your nose may run all the time), to connecting anyone with a survivor who knows and understands.
Find, Share & Unite
We want to support you and everyone you know who has had cancer, is going through treatment, or is newly diagnosed and their families and anyone who is affected by Cancer.
Cancer Sucks.  F*** Cancer. We Hate Cancer. 
We know this already.  We can’t change that for you. 
We CAN change your journey. 
We WILL make it easier and better.
We are YOUR Cancer Family.
Stay Positive,  
Denise & the My Cancer Family family