The end

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5 mammograms

4 Ultrasounds

1 Biopsy

4 MRI’s

1 Bone Scan

Countless other Tests

6 Chemo Treatments

17 Herceptin Treatments

3 Surgeries later…

I am done.  Today, April 20th, 2017 I have officially finished all of my Breast Cancer treatment.  Done.  Motherfucking DONE.  This was all a dream up until a few weeks ago, but I have officially kicked this cancer’s ass.  I was diagnosed officially on May 2, 2016, as crazy as this is it hasn’t even been a year.  We managed to sneak in quite a bit in that time.  See above list.

Driving to Tower this morning, I had a range of emotions going through me.  I was happy, I was sad, I was excited.  I listened to Fight Song and Rise Up a few times.  Both of those “anthems” were what got me through the dark days over the last year.  Year.  A year of my life has been consumed by cancer.  36 and a cancer survivor.  Wow.

Over this last year, I have dealt with a lot of shit and a ton of that is a true blur.  It has brought Zack and myself closer.  It has brought our entire family closer, sad that it had to happen this way, but it really makes you appreciate what you have.  I have made incredible friends, I have lost a few.  I have become so appreciate of the people around me and the every day experiences that I get to have.  After all is said and done, I have come out of this with a major sense of gratitude.  Grateful to be alive, grateful for health, grateful for perky boobs.  Just plain GRATEFUL.

This will probably be the final post for Cupcakes and Chemo, but I want to always have this website as a place for people to come for support.  To laugh, to know they are not alone.  Even though my treatment is in the past, I will always be an advocate for Breast Cancer and all cancers until the end of my time.  This is a part of me, and even though the treatment ends, the feelings don’t.  You change once you have the diagnosis, a little fighter is born.

So in closing, I thank you for your support.  I thank you for being there for me, and I thank you for being a friend.  Now if you do anything, please, please get your mammograms.




I am grateful, I am thankful

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Hi there, remember me???  Well I am just popping my head in to say hi and sum up what was one of the best experiences of my life.  This weekend, myself along with 37 other members of our team, walked in the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure.  Naturally our team was called “Cupcakes and Chemo,” and we even had shirts made!  We are branded!

What an experience, there were thousands of people there and our team was the 2nd highest fundraiser!  To date, we raised $12,655! That is an absolutely incredible feat and I am so proud of everyone that raised money, and I know that it will be going to good use.

I was so honored to be given #3 for the race, and my dearest friend Marissa was given #4.  The race organizers gave us these numbers for being the highest fundraisers and “special” survivors.  There ARE some perks for having cancer I suppose.  It was extra special to have her walk beside me, knowing what we have been through over this past year and knowing that we have made it to the other side.  We can do it, we did it and we kicked cancers stupid ass!  To be walking alongside so many survivors in pink was awe inspiring and special.

To be honest I didn’t internalize the fact that I was there as a SURVIVOR.  Maybe I will realize it next year, or the year after.  Who knows.  As Zack says, we will be doing these races for at least the next 30 years so eventually I will get there.I could go on and on, but I wont bore you anymore.  If you have seen my Facebook then you have seen it all!  Until next year for the race!

Otherwise, my life has gotten back to normal.  I am back to being a chauffeur to my kids, back to making lunch for Asher, back to classes with Dylan!  He isn’t a house baby anymore!  In fact, he is a full-blown talking toddler.  He makes us laugh daily….when he isn’t crying.  I am slowly working my way back into a workout routine, something that I never in my entire life thought that I would miss!  Tomorrow I am going back to Barry’s Bootcamp, many of you know that was my happy place.  It might bring up a lot of memories though, as the last time I was there I was recovering from a biopsy knowing that I had cancer in my boob.  I still remember the feeling of the pain in my left breast while running (at 7.5 natch) for a while.  I needed to get that anger out, and hopefully I will be back to that pace again soon.

So, as they say “Life goes on.”  It most certainly does, and I ain’t slowing down.  I have two more Herceptin infusions to go, and my final cosmetic surgery in two weeks.  My hair has grown back almost three inches where I lost it.  Physically I feel just fine as if nothing happened.  We are creeping up on my 1 year anniversary of my diagnosis, but hell with it.  I SURVIVED.  Let’s fucking party (with cupcakes!)!!!!!



I look like me again

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This has been a really great week for me, I finally got a proper haircut and had my hair colored for the first time in over a year.  Yes, I am vain.  Yes my hair is really important to me.  But I am back to me.  I feel happy again.

Throughout this entire fucked up experience of my life, I realized that my hair is a protective shield for me.  It makes me feel whole and normal.  It makes me feel good and pretty.  Everyone wants to feel pretty.  I will forever be fortunate to Zack and my parents for the Cold Caps, and Gavin my Cold Capper.  Without that “shield,” I don’t think that my chemotherapy treatments would have been somewhat easier not that they were easy in any way.  My hair made me feel like I could face the world day in and day out, and allow me to not be super depressed like I wanted to be.  To be able to go on with my daily life and not look super cancery was a really big deal.

For some reason as soon as I saw myself in the mirror in my car yesterday after I left the salon, I started to cry.  I cried happy tears but a massive wave of emotion washed over me.  I had a moment of clarity- which comes and goes as a cancer survivor- that I really had cancer.  I wasn’t me for the 10 months or so of my life.  I was a person in an alternate reality battling a horrible bad guy, well billions of bad guy cells.  It was an insane feeling that is still with me this morning.  But I beat it.  I am here.  As my hairdresser said yesterday, I’m glad I didn’t die.  Not like that was EVER a choice.

I am a little emotional today, a little sentimental and solemn.  That’s ok.  As a survivor we are granted those moments of sadness.  I “rise up” and rise up a thousand times again.  I fight for me, my family and you.  I am here and not going anywhere.  It is my mission to make a difference now, with your help we can do it.

So ya, I am glad I didn’t die.  Now donate to my walk.  Same old Jessie, just better and more badass 🙂




Over and done

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I can officially say that I AM DONE WITH SURGERY!  Major surgery that is.  Friday was my final reconstruction, and I couldn’t be happier to be done.  What a long road this has been, and it is finally behind me and my family.

The surgery was Friday am and I was home by 2pm.  I have had zero pain, and have only taken two Tylenol.  I guess because I have no nerves or feeling anymore and the fact that my skin was already “broken in” contributes to the pain factor.  Basically it was just a swap out and some new implants put in.  It’s a little weird to talk about my boobs and boob job but why get all weird now?  We all knew the end game, and we are finally there.

Now I focus on finishing my treatment and recovering.  Time to relax and enjoy what life has to offer me and those around me.  It is going to be a great 2017!

Lastly, I am going to harass you by any means that I can to donate to my team for the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure.  Please consider joining our “Cupcakes and Chemo” team or donating a few bucks.  I already received an email saying that we are one of the highest earners so far!  Let’s see how much we can really raise before March 11!



Happy, HEALTHY New Year!

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Well hi there strangers.  It has been a long time since I have written, right before Thanksgiving I think.  Much has happened in the interim, mostly boring but no news is good news, right?

We had lovely holidays, Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas and New Years.  We all survived with no major arguments or tantrums, except for me.  Asher was quite well behaved given he was off of school for three weeks.

Zack took us and my sister to Cabo for a few days before Christmas, and it was glorious.  I was super anxious about going, and ultimately it was a great time.  We had a blast with my sister and the kids are obsessed with Auntie, you couldn’t ask for a more perfect time.  Zack and I certainly needed that little getaway, even if it was with the kids and Dylan woke up at 5:30 every day.  The best part was seeing people look at our dynamic and decide if we were Sister Wives or who was married to Zack.  That was a fun game to play.  Sick, yet totally fun.

New Years was awesome, especially because my parents watched the kids. We didn’t have to find a sitter this year!  Cancer gives you a pass and makes your parents do that kind of thing.  I totally agree.  Wonder what we have to do next year for them to do it again?

Now that we are back to the grind, things are obviously slowing down and getting back to a routine.  Things will be out of a routine for me for a while as I go in for my exchange on Friday.  Meaning I get my expanders out and my permanent implants placed.  Thank god, because these suckers are really starting to annoy me!  I am not nervous about the surgery, mostly that the size will be ok!  This is a permanent thing and I want to make sure that I am totally happy with them!  It will be six weeks of no lifting, which is so restricting and hard with the kids.  It is what it is and then I will be free and clear from then on!

Lastly, I wanted to share the news that I started a team for the Susan G. Komen walk on March 11.  The walk will be at Dodger Stadium and if you are in the LA area, I would love for you to join our team.  We are racing under the “Cupcakes and Chemo” team name, and are even going to have shirts made for everyone participating!  If you can’t walk, please consider a donation.  I am very cautious about my causes, and know that SGK is a valid resource doing all they can to find a cure for Breast Cancer.

Here is a link to sign up or donate.

I wish you and yours a happy and HEALTHY new year.  Only the best in 2017!  Here’s a pic of me on our official FUCK cancer trip to Cabo!



I have a lot to be thankful for

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This year, over my previous 34 Thanksgivings, I have a lot to be thankful for.  I have always been grateful for my family, friends and health, but this year above all, I am putting my health first.  See how I put it last?

As we ALL know, I am a breast cancer survivor.  Do you have any clue  how amazing it is to say the word SURVIVOR?  I really didn’t realize the enormity of it until quite recently.  Every so often I forget and think shit, I still have cancer but I don’t and I pray nightly that I never have cancer again.  So as we go into the holiday season, I am thankful for so much including my family but am putting a little extra star over health.

I started thinking about being thankful earlier in the week, and what I wanted to say on Thanksgiving.  What came to mind was saying thank you to those around me, and properly giving them the acknowledgment that they rightly deserve.  In our society there is a lot of doing, and not enough thanking.  I think that at times I am so guilty of that and am trying to be cognizant of my mistakes especially with my NEW self.  Maybe I haven’t said thank you enough, but please know that I am appreciative of your love and support over the past 6 months.

What I have learned over these months, is that people are good.  People are really fucking good.  I have been a cynic, hell I still am at times, but there are good people in this world.  They happen to be in MY world.  Before my cancer or “BC,” I was worried at times that I didn’t have a friend in the world that cared about me.  I am so fortunate and thankful to be proven wrong and made friends with people who I never would have expected.  These people have outdone themselves whether it was delivering me food or cupcakes, offering to get the kids to school or play dates.  Bringing Zack and myself ice cream or sending flowers.  These people are GOOD.  We had the extra poundage to prove it.

Another thing I learned is that friendships can be fleeting.  There have been people who showed up, and they left.  Mostly people stayed in our lives.  That is what I am thankful for.  The good, the good hearted souls that we are surrounded with.  People that care for me and my family POST cancer, people that ask how we are on a daily basis, how Asher was after his surgery.  Those are the people that we want to be with.  Friendships that I have formed aren’t fleeting, they are staying and I hope are golden for a very long time.  There will always be a place in my heart for my girls in the Triple C club.  You know who you are, and the new members who we are sadly inducting.

Aside from friendships, I am obviously thankful for a clean bill of health.  Not just for me, but for my children and husband.  We made Blue Shield our bitch this year with all of our medical costs, but we are fortunate to be on the other side now.  Between Asher’s eye and my boobs, we did good!

Zack, what can I say about him.  My partner in crime, my soul mate, my landscape architect.  He was beside me each and every chemo, nursing me back to health.  He made our backyard beautiful with his planting.  Now we see the fruits of his labor as everything has grown in and blossomed.  We might remember them as a memory of a dark place, but out of the dark came the light and we are now literally eating our fruits of his labor.  I can never explain my gratitude enough, but it is there.

Finally I am thankful for my mom, dad and sister.  Without those three over the last 6 months, I am not sure what we would have done.  They took the kids when I was sick from chemo, Jana played airplane and did art projects, there were trips to the zoo and aquarium.  What a summer those kids had!  My mother is my rock, she has gone with me to almost every single appointment from the start.  She stares at my boobs to make sure Dr. Slate makes them even.  She reminds me to get my medical card.  I forgot again mom.  I really don’t know how she does it to be honest, the woman needs a vacation!

So as we go into Thanksgiving, and my favorite holiday season I am smiling from ear to ear.  I am thankful.  Just thankful.

Eat, Drink and be Merry my friends.  From my family to yours, I wish you the happiest of Thanksgivings.




First of the next 5 years

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Hello friends, long time no talk!  It’s not such a bad thing for me to be quiet, right?  Things have been going along like normal, getting back to my day to day life.  It has been so nice to not feel sick, be in pain or anything to complain about.  Although if you ask Zack, he will say that I complain about A LOT.  I probably complained LESS when I had cancer than I do now.  Speaking of which, my toe is numb.  Anyway..

Yesterday was a monumental occasion.  I had to take my first Tamoxifen pill.  That is the anti-estrogen pill that will keep the cancer from coming back.  I have to be on this pill for at least 5 years, go me.  It was pretty scary to take it for the first time.  First, it was another realization that I had cancer, HAD cancer.  Second, it reminded me that I have to do this for a really long time.  Third, I was and still am scared of the side effects.  There is a long list, but as my friend said it can’t get worse than chemo!

So last night I took my pill and headed off to bed.  I was told to take it at night so if you get dizzy or nauseated you will be sleeping.  I fell right asleep and woke up feeling ok.  Let’s hope for the best, right?  If not we deal with side effects and take them as they come.

Lastly, we had our final checkup for Asher’s eye post surgery.  We had to put a patch over his good eye for a week to bring his left to center completely.  Well, it worked!  We received the all clear today that the surgery was a true success and there is a 90-95% that this will hold!  We needed some good news around here and we finally got some!  Well that and my eyebrows grew back, but this isn’t about me.  It is all about Ash!  I am so proud of him and happy that this is finally behind him.  Ahh, relief!

Otherwise things are good, I scheduled my next surgery for January 6th, it will be here before we know it!  Time to enjoy the holidays, family, friends and be fortunate for good health.



Sooooooo close

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Well hi, I’m back.  As you know I am getting back to myself and my regular programming called life.  This Wednesday marks 6 weeks post surgery, but of course I have cheated and started lifting things such as my kids.  I just couldn’t wait any longer!!!

I couldn’t take it any longer, I needed to lift Dylan!  Damn that kid got heavy in 6 weeks, no not really but he definitely got bigger!  I missed snuggling that little face and squishing those cheeks.  He missed it too.  Asher and I caught up on some snuggle sessions too, can’t leave big boy out of anything right?

It has been so nice to get back to helping with the kids, minus the early as fuck wakeup this weekend with Daylight Savings.  I decided that the coffee chains are in cahoots with the DST idiots so they all make money off of the exhausted parents.  Makes perfect sense, doesn’t it?  I have really enjoyed just sitting on the floor and playing, dressing and even changing Dylan’s diapers.  I basically missed out on 6 months of my kids lives this summer, so I feel like I want to play catchup.  Zack has been on morning duty for 6 weeks, and I am pretty sure he’s exhausted as well.  Funny enough, I have been most excited for dinner time.  This is a time most parents dread, but the fact that I can be present and actually FIGHT with my kids to eat is a big deal.  A few months ago it wasn’t even a question.  Now its a must.  Mama is back, much to their dismay.

Otherwise, I had my second fill last week and I am happy to report that it didn’t hurt too much.  The worst part is the next day when I can’t really sleep on my sides.  I think I will have three more and then be a perfect size.

My last piece of info is that I decided to join Beauty Counter as a sales rep. I have no idea what the fuck I am doing, but figure a few extra bucks in my pocket can’t hurt.  I started using their products when my friend who was going through cancer also suggested it.  I have really enjoyed their products, especially because they have a policy to not use banned ingredients (this isn’t a sales pitch FYI).  So we will see where this leads me!  Fun times ahead!

Good to share some news with you all!




Two months ago

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Today marks 2 months since I had my last chemo.  In a strange way, it feels like ages ago.  In a strange way it feels like it was seconds ago.  I still have leg aches from my Herceptin, my hair is still quite thin and falling out, but my taste is back and hey I’m down 15 lbs.  Cancer, the best diet you never want to be on.

I still can’t even wrap my head around the fact that I HAD CANCER.  Cancer, isn’t that something that old people get?  People 35 and younger should never get cancer.  Sadly that isn’t true anymore. In the last week alone, I have heard about 5 more women diagnosed.  While trick or treating last night, I heard about another one.  I also heard about another potential with a questionable mammogram.  This shit is fucked I tell you.  Fucked.

Speaking of trick or treating, we had a great time.  We had three costumes between two kids, even I dared to rip some hair out and wore a Statue of Liberty crown.  Asher was Chase the Rescuebot obviously, and Dylan was the cutest damn Winnie the Pooh there ever was.  Sadly he hated it and left the house as a boring Batman.  At least I have pictures.  Asher is now old enough to really enjoy the holiday, and tell us when he has had enough!  I was exhausted by 7:30.

Anyway, two months have passed and I am feeling pretty good to be honest.  Someone asked me last night how I was doing, and I had to take a second to remember WHY she was asking.  Duh, my surgery.  Tomorrow marks 5 weeks since my double mastectomy and one more until I can carry the kids again!  If I am having to remember why people ask, I guess my healing is going in the right direction.  Today I even felt like a normal mom, going to school assembly, doing a ton of errands and taking the kids to the doctor.  They’ll love me for that.

Tomorrow I get my expanders filled yet again, I am on my way folks!  I hope this one doesn’t hurt, because last time it really wasn’t terrible.  Here’s to hoping.

And remember, don’t eat too much of your kids Halloween candy, it’s not nice.  Share with your friends, not theirs.



Being on the other side

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Today was a horribly tough day.  This morning Zack and I had to take Asher to have his eye surgery for his wandering eye.  We have been putting it off due to my treatments and surgery and we just had to do it. It was pretty sad and awful to see your baby being wheeled into the operating room.

No matter your age or your child’s age, this is a difficult and horrible thing to go through.  On a scale of 1-10, 10 being open heart surgery, this surgery according to his doctor was a .5% risk.  That is obviously a really low percentage, but it is still surgery and anesthesia nonetheless.  I hated every minute of waiting in that waiting room, all of one hour and fifteen minutes.

When his doctor came out and told us that everything went well, a huge sigh of relief came over us and we could breathe.  We had to wait a bit for him to wake up in the recovery room, but once we saw him we could really relax.  It was pretty surreal to see your baby boy, all of four years old on that big gurney with an IV and heart monitors.  I don’t know if I can ever get that out of my head.

I can now see what my parents felt like during all of my surgeries and procedures.  No matter your age, they are your children and the love just pours through your veins and heart.  I have never squeezed my little’s more than I have today.  They are blessings and we just want them to live their lives to the fullest and never have any challenges.  The good thing is that he is handling it like a champ, aside from the eye drops.  It is what it is!

We spent the majority of the afternoon in front of the TV watching Cars and Rescue Bots, today was a complete free pass day for all.  Zack and I were so tired from not sleeping last night, that we both passed out on the couch while Dylan napped and Ash watched TV.

My day ended on a bit of a high note with me giving Dylan a bottle before bed for the first time in exactly one month.  One month has gone by since my surgery.  One month since my body changed.  One month since I have been able to start moving on.  I cried as soon as he was in my arms in his sleep sack, and cried once Zack took him and put him in his crib.  It will be two more weeks until I can lift him or Asher, and those days can’t come soon enough.  Until then, we keep on keeping on.  Right?