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                                                                               Roxanna March 2002                                                                

     My name is Roxanna Trinka. I'm a business owner and live in Florida with my precious Husband. I call him Husband.  Bill is too common a name for an extraordinary man.  When I call out "Husband" in a crowd, there's no doubt who I'm looking for.  We have a beautiful, grown daughter, Chelsea.   We as a family had breast cancer.  I was the body that it attached to.          

     You Can Thrive! is my gift to everyone,
  including me.

Things I've learned so far:

     1.  You've got to 'drive your own bus.'   Doctors are human and only know what they know... just like us.

     2.   Build an army of family and friends and give them official ranks like captain, drill sergeant, etc.  don't forget to assign        them  their job description, too of how you need them to support you.

     3.  Just say "I'll pass" on the invitation to the pity party.  The entertainment's lousy and the hangover is even worse - for  everybody.

     4.  Stay busy, busy, busy!   If you stay home, the side effects of everything are multiplied.

     5.  Focus on the outcome.   (Make sure you pick a good one!)

     6.   Live RIGHT NOW as if the outcome has already occurred.

     7.  Volunteer and contribute RIGHT NOW.   If you can only do 5 minutes or $5.00, do it!  The more you do, the better you'll feel.  The realization will hit that 'it's not about me,' and God, that feels GREAT!

     8.  Surround yourself with people that are upbeat and enrolled in your commitment to renewed good health.  Eliminate or limit your contact with gloom and doomers.

     9.  Know everything you can about the type of breast cancer you HAD (key word), and become an expert on why you are going to never see it recur.  Period.  Take responsibility like you never have.  The internet is flush with viable information.

     10.   Discuss everything with your doctor.  If he's too busy to answer your questions or has a lousy attitude, find another and another until YOU feel confident he or she is the right one for you.

     11.  There is a connection between mind, body and spirit.   Dis-ease is what we create in ourselves when we neglect one of or all of the three.

     12. Thank God every day for all the blessings you have.   If you feel you have none, open your eyes.   Blessings are all around us.  Embrace them and give thanks!

     13.  This is not a dress rehearsal!   We are living the final act RIGHT NOW!  God is not going to take us one minute before he is ready for us.  Live RIGHT NOW!   Breast cancer does not define me or you.  Wouldn't it be a shame to not live fully only to realize in the end that breast cancer didn't kill us?   We can't stop living for fear of dying.

On my 2002 Heritage Springer Harley Davidson 4 days after a Taxol  treatment.  Lake Okeechobee Ride December 2002

     You Can Thrive! is a source of information and inspiration using my journey as the vehicle.

In April of 2000, I had a 'clear' mammogram.  Three weeks later, I awoke with a lump the size of a large pea in my right breast.  The next day an ultrasound confirmed 'irregular' (BAD WORD!) margins.   I had no idea that was a big red flag.  Apparently my doctor didn't either(?!)   He said breast cancer doesn't just pop up like that (really?)... he also thought I should just watch (?) it and see if it changes... BAD ANSWERS.   When asked what he would recommend if I were his wife or mother, his response was that he'd tell them they were being hysterical!  Okay, I hear you... say it in unison with me... WRONG DOCTOR!  Got it, now lets move on.

Could've, should've and would've are worthless, powerless words.   As one motivational speaker once said, 'if you want to move forward into your future using your rear view mirror, go ahead.'  It's in the past and I can't change that.  The bottom line is that my ignorance about breast cancer, along with my desire to never have it caused me to make a wrong choice.  I decided that if he wasn't concerned with the lump, I wouldn't be either.  (Example #1 of not 'driving my own bus') .

As the months passed I could have sworn it was getting smaller!   One year later I went for my mammogram and thank God it wasn't bigger but the technician went berserk!  She was dumbfounded I had lived with the lump for an entire year.   THAT my friends was my first wake up call.

Do not pass go, do not collect $200, this lump was coming OUT!   We weren't going to poke it, probe it or piss it off... I interviewed 3 surgeons to find the one who agreed to my terms:  he would make one incision and take a good clean margin all the way around the lump in one procedure, no matter what it was.   Sounds like it should've been no big deal, right?   Well, due to our litigative society, the AMA created  a certain protocol that is supposed to be followed by physicians with regard to breast lumps.  Removal with good margins is the LAST step they're supposed to do.  Imagine the lost revenue if women insisted in lump removal without biopsy, scanning, ultrasounds and the like!   It didn't matter to me what it was.   It did not belong in my body and I wanted it out.   You'd be amazed at how many doctors felt biopsy was the best route because a lumpectomy would leave a scar!  They've got to be kidding!   I told one doctor,  "At 42 years old, I don't think I'll be pursuing a career as a topless dancer."  That's not to say I'm not concerned about how I look.  Plastic surgeons are everywhere in South Florida!

The day of the lumpectomy I was so afraid.   I guess deep down, I knew all along it was cancer.  Just waiting in the outpatient surgery center was unbearable.  I paced like a wild animal and could not stop crying.  Come on I was only 42 years old!

That was June 2002.  I became truly alive for the first time in my life, finally alive and only 42!  Thank God!  Some people live 100 years and never wake up.

Coming soon, "Hair is Really Over Rated - You Can Thrive While Having Chemotherapy!"

                                                                         You Can Thrive!




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