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Amy Durfee West was a practicing attorney for close to three decades until she found herself moved to change her life’s path. About a year ago, in the midst of pursuing this new path, she was diagnosed with Stage IV breast cancer. This is her story.
About a year-and-a-half ago, at the end of 2010, I became friends in cyberspace with a blogger named Rachel. She had left an endearing comment on my blog, for a post that was not directly about breast cancer, as it happened, but about losing my 15-year-old dog, Foxy. That post was called Foxy’s Tale – Chapter Two. As is true for many of us, my pets were a constant source of comfort, unalloyed love, and joy during my treatment for breast cancer. What made Foxy so special to me was that he showed up in my life as a frightened, half-wild stray, and, despite his understandable terror, arising from a background of abuse and neglect, he chose to stay with me, to trust me to care for him and treat him with kindness. He rewarded me with love and loyalty, and taught me many lessons in how to face fear, lessons I would need when I was diagnosed.
Welcome to the METAvivor Blog. We are excited about providing an opportunity to share and discuss issues that affect people with metastatic breast cancer in more depth. We plan to invite posts from those living with MBC, as well as from clinicians, researchers, activists, authors, and breast cancer bloggers who do not have mets themselves, but who support those who do by being ‘fearless friends,’ or who are involved in careers to extend life and/or improve quality of life for the MBC community. Far too often, individuals with MBC experience isolation, especially from the so-called breast cancer awareness culture at large. We want to change that. The only way to make real progress, to advance real awareness, is for all of us to work together.