TEAM

Amy's Army

Amy's Army

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Raised: $50

Goal: $2,020

Welcome to our team fundraising page!

AMY"S STORY

Amy is...was my mom. She loved her family, friends, her dog Mouse and her job as a long haul truck driver. She got to travel the country, see everything she wanted to see and get paid to do it. She was usually "home" about four days month, the other 26 she was from one end of the country to the other. She had been complaining about stomach pain for a couple of months when I suggested going to the Drs office on her off days to see what could be wrong. For several months after that she saw a GI specialist, had an endoscopy and colonoscopy and several ultrasounds. The Dr she was seeing saw nothing more than stomach ulcers. I couldn't agree with the Drs findings there had to be more, I kept on her to find out the why. I had her request bloodwork and testing for things like H.Pylori. I suggested a different dr. She was tired of feeling bad but wouldn't take more time off to take care of herself, she didn't want to lose her seat on her truck or not be making money. She called me March 20,2016 saying that she was being admitted to a hospital in Denton, TX due to vomiting and abdominal pain. She hadn't been able to eat for days and was weak. That night she had simple x-rays of her abdomen to see what there was to see. On March 21, she was told she had a mass on her pancreas. She was unsure of what that meant but was told there would be a biopsy in the near future to find out what that mass contained. March 22, the Dr took a biopsy of her liver. They then discussed with her that it would take 3-5 days to receive the results. During this time she was on IV pain medications, medications for "ulcers", an anti-nausea medication  and several others to try to get her to a place where she could eat. She was growing more weak by the day. Supplemental oxygen and IV nutrition had been started as well.  On March 24, 2016 we received the news that she had Stage 4 metastatic pancreatic cancer. I don't know that we could have received anything more devastating than that news. An endoscopic exam was scheduled for March 25 to find out why she was still vomiting uncontrollably. The Dr that preformed the endoscopy found that not only was her mass obstructing her small intestine but her bile duct as well. There was no place for anything to go if she tried to eat! Food and drinks would sit in her stomach then she would vomit.  At that time her doctor placed an NG tube so that the contents of her stomach would have a place to escape. We found out a very short time after the endoscopy that the doctors in Denton, TX  did not really know what to do with a person in her condition much less treat her. THERE WAS NO ONCOLOGIST IN THE HOSPITAL!! We began the fight to get her moved to a hospital that could and would treat her. She was getting weaker by the day. We had to pull every string available but on March 28, 2016 we were able to get her transferred to Dallas, TX. What a relief...or so we thought. She had to ride in an ambulance from Denton to Dallas, almost an hour. When she arrived she was in tears, in pain and feeling worse than she had ever felt in her life. BUT The TEAM of doctors were amazing, we must have met 10 doctors the first night we were there. Everything that was done in Dallas was quick and we felt like she had the best fighting chance she could have. We met her primary surgeon on March 29 and discussed what he called a double bypass of the stomach. Almost a Whipple but not quite. We just knew she would be headed to Houston after recovery, would start chemo and fight the beast. She had surgery on April 1, 2016. She was taken from surgery to the ICU just for precaution and just because her doctor wanted her to have 1-on-1 attention. Around 2am she began to struggle to breathe and was placed on a ventilator. Into the next day, she struggled. I have never seen so many IVs or fluids/meds put into one person until that day. She began to perk up the next day and we were so happy. She could control her own heart rate, she didn't need constant replacement fluids, she was breathing assisted with the vent. That was pretty much how the rest of that week in the ICU went until her kidneys started shutting down. She was placed on 24hr dialysis. Come on kidneys do your job!! She was stable-ish at that point but we could tell she was fighting hard to stay that way. The few times sedation was decreased we would tell her what friends or family members were in the room and who loved her. She began to struggle to keep her own heart beat and blood pressure a day after being on dialysis. Crap. The Dr did decide to start tube feeding her, hoping some nutrition would help her gain some strength. She can get stronger if she gets "food" right? On April 6 she was taken off the ventilator and was breathing on her own without being sedated I got to hear her voice for the first time in 6 days!! I was ecstatic things were looking great! But and there is always a but...that same day she had to be placed back on the ventilator, it was just too much work for her to breathe on her own. I was instantly crushed. The same night she somehow vomited around her NG tube and aspirated. Next day x-ray...aspiration pneumonia. ^&@&%*&# more steps back. On April 8 palliative care came to visit with me, I couldn't even talk to them. I was a mess, sobbing uncontrollably. I couldn't believe that they wanted me to let her go. After spending the next few days calling all family and friends that loved her dearly, I made the decision to put her life in Gods hands. He took my precious mother at the age of 58, 19 days post diagnosis, April 11, 2016 at 1:45pm. So much of the devastation may not have been avoided but could have been delayed if the months and months of doctors visits had found her mass.  She knew something was wrong! You know when something is wrong in your body. Make your doctors listen! Make them look for the why! You have to be your own advocate. 

 

Our team is Striding for the 5th year!! We are growing and raising money in support of the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network.

This cancer is taking our friends and family far too fast. Lets make a difference! We need a CURE! We need EARLY DETECTION! We need HOPE! We need a HIGHER survival rate!

Please make a donation today and help us reach our fundraising goal!

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About PanCAN's PurpleStride

Local action. Nationwide impact. This is PanCAN PurpleStride, the ultimate event to end pancreatic cancer.

On One Big Day, through 60 PurpleStride events taking place across the country, pancreatic cancer survivors, families, caregivers, researchers and supporters will join together and walk to honor everyone affected by the disease.

PurpleStride is the number one way PanCAN raises money to fight pancreatic cancer on all fronts — through research, clinical initiatives, patient services, advocacy and nationwide volunteer support. Learn more.