Thursday, December 29, 2016

Julia's Memorial Service

I want to begin by thanking you all for your amazing support over the last week or so. I have received so many messages there is no way I will be able to respond to all of them. Julia and I were always blown away by the support we received from family, friends, and total strangers. She would be, maybe is, smiling to know how much that support has continued for myself and Julia's family. 

Thursday, December 22, 2016

Crown of Righteousness

This is Andy, Julia’s husband. As most of you are aware, Julia passed away in the early morning hours of Wednesday, December 21st.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Joy Unspeakable

We're home. Oh with such a thankful heart do I write that small but wonderful sentence. After spending two weeks in the hospital where we learned about the sudden regression of the cancer, faced many unknowns with the immediate future, had all sorts of tests and procedures, met with a variety of hospital doctors/teams and experimented with various medications and dosages, we finally came to the well-supported (and well-prayed for!) decision to receive palliative care in my parent's home.

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Peace from the Hammock

My health has taken a significant turn for the worse. This past month, I've been at home bedridden for the majority of each day with worsened nausea, fluid retention with complications and general weakness restricting mobility. After having my abdomen and chest drained of 3L of fluid three weeks ago, my oncologist arranged for home care nurses to come morning and evening to give strong anti-nausea medication and IV hydration. 

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Persevering in Prayer

Last week, Andy and I uneasily awaited CT scan results in the all too familiar room at Juravinski Hospital. My oncologist came in, asked about our Bahamas trip and then explained that in the past three months the tumours in my abdomen wall have grown and there are some new tumour growths appearing in my abdomen and now in my chest too. While it's considered slow growing, the new tumour growth indicates this second oral drug I've been taking is not working. 

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

A Grateful Heart

Rest. This was our prayer going into the summer. We longed for rest. And we were also eager to discover abundant life. What these things really meant we weren't sure, but our hearts were begging for them. As I write to you mid-September, I can say with a full, grateful heart that these desires and prayers have been answered beyond what we could have imagined. Andy and I are praising God for a wonderful summer... one that's taught us about true rest and how to embrace the abundant life more completely. 

Friday, August 5, 2016

A Personal Letter

Below is an email I sent to a close friend a couple months ago. It was in response to her email, asking how I was coping mentally and emotionally amidst a painful journey of suffering. There was no doubt what I would share. And now I'd like to share this personal email... but this time it's written to you. Yes, you.

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Living a Paradox

It's been a year since I heard the words, "It's cancer." On June 18th, 2015 at about 11am I got the call from Juravinski with the results of my biopsy surgery. To my shock and dismay it was the worst of the three potential options; it was stage 3C epithelial ovarian cancer.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Rest for the Weary

Last week I had a CT scan to determine the effectiveness of the oral drugs, which I had been taking for six weeks. The report came back to show that the cancerous tumours in my abdomen have continued to grow. Unfortunately the oral drugs have been ineffective. The scan also revealed that what they originally thought was post-surgery inflammation is actually more cancer lining my abdomen wall. There is also some fluid build up around my lungs again. Seeing as these oral drugs either work or they don't, I will stop taking the pills and we will try another treatment after consulting with our oncologists in Hamilton and Toronto over the next couple weeks.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Beauty for Ashes

This past weekend, I had the privilege of sharing my story at the Lynne's Legacy Run/Walk in Hamilton. Andy and I, along with our family and friends, have participated in this event over the past five years, but I never imagined that I'd have my own cancer journey to share one day. 

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Video: Sharing My Cancer Journey

As many of you know, I had the incredible opportunity of sharing my story at a fundraising gala for Pink Pearl in Toronto on Friday night.

Wednesday, April 6, 2016


Yesterday, Andy and I were told the cancer has returned to my abdomen. I had a chest and abdomen CT scan last week to investigate a bump on my pelvis. When we met with my oncologist from Juravinski Hospital in Hamilton yesterday, our concern was confirmed.

Saturday, February 13, 2016

Defining Love

Before I get to some reflections on love in light of Valentine's Day, here's an update since the January 12th surgery. Andy shared with you that the surgery was successful in removing all visible cancer. This is amazing news and a huge, huge answer to prayer.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Chest Surgery Update

This is Andy, Julia's husband, giving a brief update on Julia's surgery. The bottom line is that everything went well and they were able to remove all visible cancer!

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Five Days

The major chest surgery we've been anticipating for four months is in five days. Would you join us in praying faithfully? While there is likely less cancer to remove in this surgery, the risk factors are comparable to the invasive abdomen surgery in September.