Purple Chemo

Mar 09

Since I started steroids today to prepare for tomorrow’s Purple Chemo, I’ve been thinking about this, the last stripe in my chemo rainbow.

It’s bittersweet for me to get to the end of this rainbow…

Sweet because I know I get to be done with Taxotere, the chemotherapy drug that has made me weak, shaky, hairless, and exhausted.

Bitter because I lose the security blanket of knowing that there is poison working on the cancer.

I’m focusing on the sweetness, and the return of feeling healthy and strong.  I’m anticipating spring walks evolving to summer runs, swinging on the swings with my daughters, and sitting on the back patio after the kids are in bed with my husband.  There are many, many good time to be had.

I know for sure that my pot o’gold is the 48+ years I want to spend with my family.


While I’ll be done with Taxotere, the chemotherapy drug, I’ll be continuing Perjeta and Herceptin (both biological drugs) that I’ve been getting every three weeks from this point forward.  My first dose without the Taxotere will be right before I leave for my trip to NYC with Maren.  And then three weeks after that, and then three weeks after that, etc.  Whilst I’m coming to the end of my chemo treatment, I won’t be “graduating” as we say in the Chemo Room.  This means visits to the oncology office several times a month, forever.  (Forever is a long time, so this “forever” plan works for me.)  Since cancer popped up in my lung last fall, there is the medical expectation that it will eventually pop up somewhere else.  I pray for my lymph system, lungs, chest wall, liver, brain, and bones a lot because that is where breast cancer tends to show up.  I would love it if you would pray for those specifically too, if you are so inclined.

The medical expectations are one thing, and God’s plan is another.  I choose to believe that God is good and can work through a bad thing like cancer.  I am working with my medical team and doing everything they recommend.  But my faith, my mind and my body remain in God’s hand, trusting in Him to do good.  And I know He will.  And the cool thing is that the idea of God doing good through cancer is continuously being reinforced throughout these past two years.  I can’t tell you the number of good things that have happened to me because of my diagnosis.  Almost daily, I am the recipient of some outrageous act of kindness.  What’s even more amazing to me are the blessings that you — my friends, family, and stranger-freinds — report as a result of connecting with me through my life and my writing.  I love the ripples of goodness that have come into my life.  Make no mistake though, I started writing because of the one black spot (cancer), and it was the trigger point for all of those good things to come to fruition.  I say, let the good times roll.  Ripple on.  Love on.  Do Today Well.



  1. Patty /

    When I was a (younger) kid purple was my favorite color… I hope purple kicks your cancer to the curb forever. Praying.

  2. Ann Yelle /

    Yes…let the good times roll! I pray for you regularly. I know how much I appreciated the prayers I received when I had breast cancer. God is good…all the time!!

  3. My most recent mantra: Why worry when you can pray?

    You are at the top of my list as I put this into practice. Love you Friend.

  4. I’ve been following your blog since the beginning, when it was linked through Momastery. Which is maybe a little bit weird, since I don’t have kids. Anyway, that’s not the point. The point is I just wanted to tell you that I am truly inspired by your positive outlook and determination to make the most of every single day you are given.

    I am equally impressed with your healthcare providers and your relationship with them. They sound like some seriously passionate and dedicated folks.

    I got accepted to medical school last week, and I hope to be that kind of provider one day. If I am that fortunate, I will have you and your brave story telling to thank.

    Thank you for sharing your life with strangers, it makes a difference.

  5. Wow! The rainbow has gone by so quickly (it seems) but I know it didn’t feel like it for you. As an old pre-school teacher we used the rainbow often. We taught about the colors-obviously! And science, and all the great things that come with each color. I was blessed to work in Faith based pre-schools so we could teach about a deeper meaning, hope and promise of another day after the rain. Without the rain-there couldn’t be rainbows, or plants growing, or even fresh clean water to drink. I will wear my purple proudly, in my own way representing you during purple chemo! I wouldn’t have known about you had I not been on this journey myself when my friend “Annie” told me about Anderson Family Zoo. Praying for you has been as healing for me as I pray it is for you! Now eat some purple grapes(or skittles) and drink lots of water. Yay! so happy you are almost done with this step. Moving on to healthier, busier(good busy!)daughter filled days, vacations, quality husband time and all the things that can happen way easier without the rigors of chemo treatment. Last time down the slide, I am happy for you and praying for the best possible results.

  6. Jen,
    I’m praying for you during your purple days !

  7. Tiffany Green /

    I’m so glad I’ve been blessed as one of your ripple recipient blog readers!!! Good bye purple days and hello spring and summer days hopefully sooner than later (ready for some warmer weather! God is good all the time and He’s got you in the palm of His hand!

  8. Margaret /

    Your view that God can work through a bad thing like cancer is right on. I believe nothing is wasted in God’s economy. I think of Paul’s example and how he kept his faith through his trials. His testimony and triumph are still with us all these years later.

  9. Laura /

    We’re with you helping you carry this and cheering you on from the sidelines! You are always in our prayers!

  10. Lori6NV /

    Go purple chemo! Go Jen! “He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.” Isaiah 40:29

  11. I like the “Last time down the slide” comment. That sounds so fitting for this Purple Chemo run. I hold you up to the Universal Healing Power and claim your healing in the name of Life.

  12. Katie /

    So great to re-meet you at church yesterday, and your sweet Greta. Thanks for sharing the strength God has given you throughout this journey in this blog. You are an inspiration! I will wear purple today in your honor, and will be praying for today, as well as your lymph system, liver, brain, chest wall, lungs, and bones. God is bigger than cancer. Honest, yet hopeful! 🙂

  13. I will pray for your systems to stay cancer free. I do believe your insider are vibrating with joy, love, and gratitude and that is a cancer-fighter like none other! Looking forward to spending some time in the sunshine with you soon. I LOVE the memory making that will be happening in NYC soon. So glad for your radiant posts and radiant friendship.

  14. Jennifer /

    My little girl thinks purple is the best, most powerful colour in the universe! I hope it does miracles for you. Praying for you and your pot of gold.

  15. Annie /

    Praying for all of your body-parts. Each and every one. Specifically. Naming them before God. In the name of the Father, the Son, and his Holy Spirit. Amen.