As you know, Jen has been battling Stage 3 melanoma cancer since May of last year. The last 18 months have been filled with surgeries, hospital stays, MRI/CT/PET scans, and an entire year of chemotherapy. Through all of that, many of you have blessed our family in multiple ways. You have prayed for us. You have encouraged us. You have brought meals to us. You have kept us laughing and smiling, even in the midst of all the suffering cancer brings. We are beyond grateful.
So, it is with a fair amount of trepidation that we even make this next request. Cancer is expensive, and it has finally caught up with us in the last few months. Jen's specific chemotherapy treatment alone runs us almost $1000 every month. Regular doctor visits, biopsies, scans, and other expenses add up on top of that.
Let me be clear. We will be able to eventually pay these bills. We've been adjusting as a family throughout the year (postponing vacations, cutting expenses, etc…), and we'll continue to do so. But, there are a few reasons we've decided to reach out. First, Jen's chemotherapy treatment finishes August 1st, and she'll begin the long process of recovering her strength (physical, mental, and emotional) while also weaning herself off high doses of pain medication. Reducing these medical expenses will go a long way toward eliminating one less thing for her to worry about. Second, and I know this may sound crazy, but we are excited to begin fostering children again. We've had to take a break for obvious reasons, and we don't feel comfortable resuming foster care until we've reduced these bills. Finally, many of you have asked for ways you can continue to help our family beyond prayers, meals, and encouragement. We've done our best to keep finances out of the picture, but they are unfortunately very real and continue to mount. They are a definite need, and if helping financially is something you feel led to, we want to make that an option.
So, if you would like to contribute, we would be extremely grateful. In fact, we have a special T-shirt for anyone donating $25 or more as a way to celebrate Jen's chemotherapy coming to an end. The amazingly talented Brian Brasher kindly created two amazing designs for you to choose from, and we'd be stoked to see everyone rocking these shirts. In typical Jen fashion, she has decided to ride the 100 mile LiveStrong challenge at the end of October to celebrate. We've created a LiveStrong team named Derailing Cancer (haha, cycling joke), so the T-shirt designs reflect that idea.
We're going to run this campaign all the way up to Jen's final CT/PET scans on October 3rd. That's when we'll hopefully hear the doctor say "No Evidence of Disease." That will be a big day, and it seems fitting to end on such a big day.
To wrap things up, I just want to say how much everyone's support over the last 18 months has meant to me and our family. We could not have done this without the love and support of so many family and friends. The majority of patients don't continue the full year on this chemotherapy treatment because it's so difficult, but Jen will soon be done with the entire year. You have all helped make that possible. Whether you can donate or not, know that we treasure your friendship more than these words can say. Thank you so much.
Adam and Jen