Diagnosed With Cancer, What Now? Kathy’s Team Fist Bump Shares Their Experience.

Having yourself or a loved one diagnosed with cancer is a terrifying ordeal. Confusion, fear, and uncertainty make all physical movement seem clumsy and jerky, as if your brain is in shock, making communication with your nervous system impossible. Sudden flash-backs to happy moments in your life collide violently in your mind with flash-forwards of the possible dark, lonely days and nights ahead.We Do Not Know How Strong We Are

Within the first few days of learning about the cancer, I think it is important for the caregiver and patient to start building a plan to fight it. Stop looking up “cancer” and “life expectancy” on google! This will throw a wrench in your ability to cope and accept this nightmare. Wait for your doctor to learn more about your tumor and discuss it with you! Then do your research.

Once the shock wears off you can start preparing for the battle. Here’s a list of steps we took from diagnosis to the first session of treatment. With this you will get an idea of the agonizing steps you must take before treatment begins. Do not think it will be a quick process; it is slow and agonizing!

We understand the fear you feel and want to make this as simple and stress free as possible for you.  Please understand that this is not a MUST DO list. I did a lot that first week because I felt a need to get this done to speed up Kathy’s first treatment session. Not all of you have time to do what I did. Adjust it to your schedule and use what you want, discard the rest.

At the end of this publication we have included links to the US News top 20 cancer centers of 2016, various organizations we contacted, and organizations that might be able to help you with travel, flights, and housing on your trips to receive treatment. Also included are notes I jotted down during communication with these organizations.

We hope this helps! Please feel free to contact me with any questions you might have. Click here to send me an email with your question.


Week 1:

  • Have the doctor that diagnosed your tumor set up an appointment ASAP for a biopsy.
  • Begin building your support system: Tell your family and close friends. You WILL need this! I can not stress enough how important the prayers and words of encouragement from around the world have been for us.
  • Tell you employer: Hopefully your employer will be as awesome as mine and Kathy’s. Not only did they treat us as humans, but in both our cases they said they had our backs and to not worry about our jobs.
  • Contact Cancer Centers: Do your research and find a nearby cancer center that you feel will be a good fit for you. The places I contacted said they couldn’t make an appointment until after a biopsy had been done and a pathology report created. Be sure to go ahead and give the person you are talking to all the patient’s insurance information so they can get started on creating a file for you or your loved one. Also, ask them what additional information they need you to fax them in order to get the ball rolling ASAP.
  • If you do not have unlimited funds contact your bank and explain your situation. I was able to secure a low interest line of credit that only charges interest on the funds I use. It is very similar to a credit card, but without the 18% – 25% interest rate many charge.
  • Begin prepping for a fundraiser encase it is needed: You should have this prepared encase you need it down the road. I may have a low interest line of credit but I do not want it to build too high a balance and cause BIG problems down the road. You can also look into having shirts printed up as part of your fund raiser. You will be surprised by the number of family, friends, and strangers that want to help you out.
  • Invest in a good day planner that has calenders and additional space for notes. You will be writing down a lot of dates, observations, and instructions. It will not be a waste of money.
  • Be prepared to find out just how powerful your love is. Spend all the time you can with family.

Week 2:

  • Plan your rolls in this battle: In Kathy and my case, we decide that Kathy’s only job will be to fight this cancer with every core of her being. My responsibility, as husband and caregiver, will be to deal with insurance companies, finances, doctor appointments, and procedure appointments.
  • Create your own private support group. We decided to start Team Fist Bump, which is our own private group open to anyone willing to say a prayer, give a hug, fist bump, or send an inspirational message Kathy’s way. We have hundreds of members today that we keep in touch with through social media. Kathy and I receive a ton of strength just by reading comments left on our Facebook post we put out allowing the “team” to follow Kathy’s progress and experiences.
  • Have the Cancer Centers you have in mind contact the hospital where the biopsy was, or will be done, and your primary doctor to request all medical records so they can add this to the medical file they are building on you. Remember to double check with them that this has been done.
  • Hopefully you will be able to have the biopsy done during the first week. In our case the biopsy did not occur until the second week. At which time I told the hospital where the biopsy procedure was taking place that our cancer center of choice (Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center), requested that I drive the pathology slides to them once they have been made available. I was told when and where to pick them up without any problems. I also request that the pathology report be faxed to Kathy’s primary doctor and Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. Be prepared to wait a long, nerve-wracking 3-4 business days for the pathology results of the biopsy. Note: Be sure to find out the specifics of the pathology slides your cancer center requires. I brought stained and had to make another trip to bring unstained.
  • Be prepared to find out just how powerful your love is. Spend all the time you can with family.

Week 3

  • After the pathology results are in and slides/reports have been received by your primary doctor and cancer center of your choice, you need to check on whether a PET scan will be needed. If so, get this scheduled as soon as possible. While the cancer center of your choice might make an appointment with you now that the cancer type has been verified, a treatment plan can not be put together until the PET scan. This procedure will show if the cancer has spread from where it originated. Once this is done your cancer can be staged and a treatment plan put together. The radiology report usually takes just one business day to complete.
  • Ask yourself if you might like to have a back up, local oncologist on stand-by should the need ever arise. Kathy and I are trying to cover every angle of this battle. We do not want to chance an emergency coming up in the future with our only option being to drive over an hour to Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. We want an oncologist that works out of our local hospital that has a fantastic emergency room only 15 minutes from our home.
  • Begin a journal. This is helpful when discussing symptoms and mental state with your doctors. It is also a good form of therapy. Not just for the patient, but the care giver as well.

Week 4

  • If your PET scan shows that the cancer has not spread then the cancer center should be able to tell you what your treatment plan will consist of. If the cancer has spread then they may want to go in and do another biopsy. Kathy’s PET scan revealed that the cancer had spread to a half dozen lymph node along her trachea and the pelvis region – more specifically, in the marrow of the  ischium bone.

During this week, because the pathology reports of Kathy’s cancer have been received and reviewed by Memorial Sloan we are finally able to make our first appointment there. Our oncologist wants to start chemotherapy, but not until he sees the pathology report of  the mass in her pelvis.

We ask the doctor if he is going to biopsy the lymph nodes around the trachea. He tells us he wants to go straight to the area that is the greatest distance from what he believes to be the starting point of the cancer, in her lung.

  • Ask your oncologist if he can have further molecular testing done on the pathology slides to sub-categorize the type. This testing showed Kathy’s cancer to be of the KRAS mutation. Now we can be added to a data base that will be used to help other individuals down the road with this same type. The testing might also come in handy when treating your cancer.

Below you will find links provided by the American Cancer Society where you can gain a better understand of this:

Tests for Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer (see “Molucular Tests” section)

https://www.cancer.org/cancer/non-small-cell-lung-cancer/detection-diagnosis-staging/how-diagnosed.html

Targeted Therapy Drugs for Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer

https://www.cancer.org/cancer/non-small-cell-lung-cancer/treating/targeted-therapies.html

>General Informaiton about Molecular Testing and Cancer:

Cancer in the Twenty-first Century (see “More targeted therapies” section)

https://www.cancer.org/cancer/cancer-basics/history-of-cancer/twenty-first-century-and-beyond.html

Personalized Medicine: Redefining Cancer and Its Treatment

https://www.cancer.org/latest-news/personalized-medicine-redefining-cancer-and-its-treatment.html

Tests used on biopsy and cytology specimens to diagnose cancer (see “Molecular genetic tests” section)

https://www.cancer.org/treatment/understanding-your-diagnosis/tests/testing-biopsy-and-cytology-specimens-for-cancer/special-tests.html

If you have any questions or need additional information, please visit The American Cancer Society or call their National Cancer Information Center at (800) 227-2345.  Cancer Information Specialists are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to assist you.

Week 5

  • We attend a consultation with the doctor that will be performing the bone biopsy on Kathy’s hip.
  • If you need to stay a night near the facility you might want to ask the cancer center if any local hotels offer discounts for patients. If they do give you a discount code always ask the hotel for their regular rates also. At times, because the hotel’s prices fluctuate, the regular rate might be cheaper than with the discount code.

We chose to do this for several reasons. Although the drive is only a little more than an hour away the satellite facility we use is still in a suburb of New York City. The traffic is horrendous and we don’t want to chance an accident causing us to be late and possibly miss an appointment. The second reason is because it gives Kathy a chance to get a good night sleep only 3 minutes away from Memorial Sloan Kettering. Arriving well rested and refreshed has become very important to us both.

  • Two days later the procedure takes place. Kathy feels nothing during the procedure and is sore for a week after. Nothing she can’t handle though. The pathology report will take 3-5 business days.

Week 6

  • Kathy is still sore from the bone biopsy but able to work.
  • We meet with our oncologist, whom gives us the pathology results of the bone biopsy. In Kathy’s case the mass in her pelvic region has originated from the mass in her lung. They are both the same type, adenocarcinoma. We are told that her cancer has reached Stage 4.
  • Ask your doctor if the PD-L1 level has elevated past 50%. We are told that the lung pathology report shows she has a cancer produced protein called PD-L1 elevated to a level of 80%, which puts her over the 50% level and qualifies her for Immunotherapy (Definition: Treatment of disease or other disorders by strengthening the body’s immune system). A relatively new treatment using the drug Keytruda, which does away with many of chemotherapy’s nasty side affects. Clinical trials show an impressively high percentage number of halting the tumor’s growth, and in some cases shrinking the cancer cells.
  • Whatever treatment you will be receiving, ask your doctor if you can have a more resent CAT scan taken just before your first session of treatment. This image will be used to compare with a future image taken after you have gone through several sessions of treatment to see if the tumor growth/growths have slowed down or stopped completely.

In Kathy’s case, she will receive three sessions (each being three weeks apart) and just before the forth session she will be given another CAT scan which will be used to compare the tumor sizes with the last scan taken a few days before she started treatment.

  • Our doctor’s answer to the question, “What is our ultimate goal here with this treatment? Our best case scenario?”

Answer: “Kathy will always have the cancer in her body. Therefore she will need to receive treatment for the rest of her life. The purpose of the treatment will be to stop the cancer cells from multiplying, stop it from spreading, and hopefully shrink it.”

Week 7

  • Germ proof your home and practice good hygiene. We bought numerous bottles of Purell to carry on our person for trips outside of home and one bottle sitting next to our front door for guest to use before entering.
  • As the days and weeks slowly, and oh so agonizingly slip by, you and your loved one might be lulled into a false complacency. You begin to adjust to the new norm of your life which involves lots of hugs, doctors visits, searching for aide of one form or another, and continuing as much of your normal routines as possible. We have discovered that the brave fronts we have put on throughout this ordeal are starting to unravel. No matter how tough you think you are, your mental health will suffer. Be prepared for breakdowns.There are so many hard questions that need to be asked. Look into therapy as a means to effectively deal with painful topics such as the future. The future? By far, this is the most difficult topic for us.
  • Finally! 46 days after Kathy’s diagnosis her treatment will begin. 1st session of immunotherapy!
  • Her only side effect has been fatigue felt the day after treatment sessions. After the first day she has felt completely normal, physically.

Below you will find a valuable list of resources that can help you:

US News Lists Top Cancer Hospitals for 2016

The US News rankings use four measures as part of the total score: reputation with specialists (27.5%); survival (37.5%); patient safety (5%); and other care-related indicators, including nurse staffing (30%).

  1. University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston
  2. Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York City
  3. Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota
  4. Dana-Farber/Brigham and Women’s Cancer Center, Boston
  5. UCLA Medical Center, Los Angeles
  6. Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute, Tampa, Florida
  7. Seattle Cancer Care Alliance/University of Washington Medical Center
  8. Cleveland Clinic
  9. Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore
  10. UCSF Medical Center, San Francisco
  11. Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston
  12. Hospitals of the University of Pennsylvania-Penn Presbyterian, Philadelphia
  13. Stanford Health Care-Stanford Hospital, California
  14. Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Chicago
  15. Barnes-Jewish Hospital/Washington University, St Louis
  16. University of North Carolina Hospitals, Chapel Hill
  17. New York–Presbyterian University Hospital of Columbia and Cornell, New York City
  18. USC Norris Cancer Hospital-Keck Medical Center of USC, Los Angeles
  19. Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center, Winston-Salem, North Carolina
  20. City of Hope, Duarte, California

Organizations For People With All Types of Cancer

If you need help you must get busy and start searching. DO NOT count on one organization for several reasons. You might make too much money, you might have a disease not on their coverage list, you might live too close to the treatment center, or they may have run out of funds. Most importantly however, this cancer is yours or your loved ones. No one will feel the urgency you do to get things in motion. It is your responsibility to find help and get things moving. You might have to say things your not use to saying in order to speed some lackey up in his/her job. Do it! This is a battle and your the general.

First, do your research, then grab your phone, pen, and pad. Make sure you wont be disturbed, and start calling. Good luck and remember that you are not in this alone. Mine and Kathy’s prayers are with you all!


OUR JOURNAL: Lessons, Love, & Fighting This Bastard Called Lung Cancer! Session 2-Immunotherapy (January 23-February 12)

GoFundMe

https://www.gofundme.com/teamfistbump

Note: All underlined words are links to the sites I am currently discussing.

Team Fist Bump (#teamfistbump) is on a mission: These journals are being published, then shared by many in an effort to reach others needing help in understanding the obstacles suddenly thrust upon them by the diagnosis of cancer. Join our team today by sharing this journal, saying a prayer for Kathy, or giving her an electronic hug or Fist Bump along with an inspirational message in the comments. To read Our Journal’s Previous issues just click the issue you would like to see:

Week 1 (Diagnosis)Week 2 (Biopsy)Week 3 (PET Scan)Week 4 (The Oncologist) , Week 5 (Bone Biopsy), Week 6 (Acceptance of Learning The Stage), Week 7 (Immunotherapy)Week 8 (Team Fist Bump is Intensifying)Week 9 (The New Norm)

Saints Game
On one of our 1st dates! When the Saints were running out of the tunnel, fireworks forming a path for them to follow onto the field, I looked over to Kathy and saw tears running down her cheeks. Competing with the awesome sounds of screaming fans, I asked her what was wrong. Her reply was, “That’s the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen!” That’s the moment I fell in love with this woman.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018 – Session 2 of Immunotherapy.

We wake up in our room at Extended Stay America – a room found for us, and discounted, by The American Cancer Society. It’ll be our last stay here. We are both already stressed, but when you add the crummy service and rainy, humid weather that has found a way to creep into our room, neither of us ever want to step foot inside this place again. Kathy agrees with my statement that the Hyatt House will be the ONLY place we stay at for future trips to Memorial Sloan.

We are joking around as we walk through the doors of Memorial Sloan Kettering Center at 11:30 AM. After we check-in we grab a seat in the waiting area for her first appointment – Lab. It isn’t long before they call Kathy in. Once again she must use breathing exercises to get her heart rate down before they release her. After several minutes it returns to normal and she is sent out to rejoin me in the waiting room.

At 1:48 PM we are led to the examination room were we will meet Dr. McFarland. Always, at the back of your mind, there is the fear the doctor has seen something else to be concerned about, but the numbing fear of walking into this place is starting to fade.

The first thing Kathy brings to the doctor’s attention is the persistent cough that she has had for several weeks now.

He listens to her breathing and tells us that he thinks Kathy might have a small respiratory infection. “Nothing to worry about. Take Mucinex for a week and the cough should be taken care of.”

He also shares with us that the molecular testing that was done on the biopsy from her lung shows that the cancer is of the KRAS mutation. “Studies show that this particular mutation seems to respond well to Immunotherapy.” I was unable to find any studies online to link this mutation to Immunotheapy so I apologize for the scientific description I had to link above for you to view.

We are both happy to hear this. Any good news we receive behind these doors is taken with immense relief by us both.

Kathy then ask the question, “Do you have a back up plan if Immunotherapy does not work?”

Dr. McFarland tells us that if this treatment doesn’t seem to be working he will start adding Chemo to Kathy’s Immunotherapy. All we can do now is hope for positive results from what she is currently undergoing. He goes on to remind us that everything seems to be going well and the minimum side effects is definitely a good thing.

Another good thing to hear!

As we leave, we ask the doctor what size shirt he wears so we can bring him an Official Team Fist Bump t-shirt on our next visit.

We head straight to the waiting room in the treatment suite area of the center. Soon after Kathy’s name is called and we enter room 19.

She reverently places War Bear and the Love Pillow on her lap as the nurses prep her for Session 2 of Immunotherapy with Pembrolizumab. As the 200mg, $17,000 bag of fluid drips into her vein, she works at getting Pandora to come up on the entertainment center provided for the patient. Once country music starts playing she sits back and gets quiet. Such a beautiful and strong person. Why?

After 30 minutes a chime goes off signalling the bag is almost empty. The nurse comes in to adjust the bag so the last drops empty. After this the Zometa drip is started. Because of Kathy’s osteoporosis this drug will be added to Kathy’s treatment every 3 sessions. This drug’s purpose is to strengthen Kathy’s bone and keep the cancer from spreading further in her pelvis.

Fifteen minutes later the chime sounds and she is unhooked. It’s been a long day.

We walk out to our truck and start the journey home. But not before stopping at the halfway point to grab a sandwich from Starbucks…this is becoming our ritual.


 Wednesday, January 24, 2018 – Kathy goes to work at 7:00 AM, but returns home at noon feeling fatigued from the treatment the day before. This seems to be the pattern. She rest on the love seat and we watch TV.


Thursday, January 25, 2018 – Kathy goes to work and is able to work all day.

One thing we have learned slowly over the past 2 months is that stresses have started building in us. Difficult topics have been all but impossible to discuss…for me anyhow. Kathy attempted to talk to me about the future a while back but I can’t find myself able to think like that. We have decided to attend a cancer group meeting hosted by our local hospital, Orange Regional Medical Center.

That evening, as we sit in the conference room where two other couples have seated themselves, one guy ask the moderator as she walks in, “Where’s (a lady’s name)“.

The moderator looked down for a moment before sharing that the lady had passed away.

Me and Kathy look at each other. This is precisely the reason we are hesitant to attend these meetings!

However, as the meeting progresses and we start feeling more comfortable with these kind, yet  scared people, we do feel some sort of relief begin to form in us. We aren’t able to talk about the difficult issues but we do get something out of it. I can’t exactly find a specific word for it but I can tell you it’s in the category of comfort.

As we are leaving the moderator mentions a fundraiser that will be taking place to raise money for the Oncology Nurses Association of Orange and Sullivan Counties. After mentioning that I might be able to help them by setting a booth up to sell books at the dinner event, she ask that I stop by the next day to discuss it further. She likes the idea.

Back home we both begin to get excited by the idea of helping out an organization that has offered to help us with a gas card to pay for trips to treatment. We can’t wait to learn what the meeting will produce!


Friday, January 26, 2018 – Kathy goes to work at her usual time. She is feeling good.

At 10:00 AM I walk into the cancer center at ORMC for my meeting. I have brought an autographed copy of The Adventures of Nick and Billy for the lady I will be meeting with. I learn that she is addicted to reading and can’t wait to read it. The meeting is definitely starting well!

And it continues going well! I share with her that just a couple of weeks before Kathy was diagnosed with cancer I had hand delivered a dozen autographed copies of this book to the pediatrics ward of this same hospital as part of my Book For a Smile Exchange program.

She is excited to have me take part in their annual fund raiser which will take place in April. She just needs to notify the rest of this organization’s committee for approval, but doesn’t see a problem.

We discuss a few details and shake hands as I leave. We are both excited…and after I call Kathy at work to tell her about the meeting all three of us are excited!


Saturday/Sunday, January 27/28, 2018 – We both stay home and enjoy each others company for the weekend.

At one point I ask Kathy if her cough seems to be getting better. She tells me that the cough still bothers her and the Mucinex still hasn’t caused her to cough up anything.


Monday, January 29, 2018 – Kathy goes to work at her normal time. During the day there is a fire drill and as they gather at the muster area a lady lights a cigarette. Kathy smells the smoke and even though it doesn’t affect her breathing in a painful way the fear causes her to break down.

Once back inside she visits her friend/boss and has an emotional big break down in the office. The stresses are beginning to break down the brave front she has been putting on. Her friend tells her to take a long weekend starting Wednesday. Such a big, heartfelt gesture!

Kathy returns to her office and begins getting things in order for her long weekend.

That night we discuss this and decide to take a trip to Connecticut for a couple of nights. Getting off from work will be no problem for me since my broken foot will keep me out of work until late March. The trip will be good. It’ll be nice to hit the interstate and pass the exit to Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center for a change!


Wednesday-Saturday, January 31-February 3, 2018 – We hit the road for Mystic, Connecticut! Several days earlier I was able to get us a free room at a hotel affiliated with a local casino that we had visited three years ago while on vacation in Mystic. Perfect!

We visited our favorite restaurant in Mystic for some genuine lobster bisque, strolled the store fronts and visited Kathy’s favorite Irish store, Irish Eyes, visited a Rhode Island beach to listen to the soothing sounds of waves crashing on the shore, and played some slots. It was a fantastic and relaxing few days that was much needed by us both.

Beach
A beautiful picture of Kathy representing Team Fist Bump…Fist pumping the cool, salty air of Rhode Island!

Perhaps the best thing to happen on this trip was Kathy’s coughing becomes less and less prevalent, and by the time we return home on Saturday evening the cough is all but gone!


Sunday-Saturday, February 4-10, 2018 – Throughout the week Kathy is able to work and the cough disappears!


Sunday, February 11, 2018 – Our good friends Bill and Nancy will be stopping by for a visit this afternoon. Kathy has not seen them since before she was diagnosed due to one or the other of them being sick. Concerns of spreading anything to Kathy has kept them both away.

As I get some work done on my computer and Kathy works at cleaning house I can sense a change in her. My plan is to go to the store once I am done with the computer work, and  start on the vacuuming once I get back. Unfortunately, I do not share my plan of helping her clean house. While she’s cleaning the bathroom the slow boil of emotions within her reach the boiling point and she lets me have it good!

After a very tardy sharing of my plan, her anger transforms into sobs as the true cause of this outburst presents itself – She’s as scared as a five-year-old lost in a department store full of real life demons. We tightly embrace for a long moment as she sobs against my chest, trying her best to explain just how scared she really is. Finally, I hear her take a few very deep breaths and release them slowly. A sign to me that the pressure, once again, is nearly gone. She pulls her head away and feels terrible because she has made a big wet spot on my shirt. We can’t help but laugh now.

I know it will build again and need venting within the next week or so, but at least she feels better for the moment. We decide to talk to the moderator at our next group meeting to see if we can get into some one-on-one counseling in the near future. We see now that there are issues needing to be brought out with the help of a professional.

Later that afternoon Bill and Nancy come by. The visit is good for us all. They are actually the same people that handed War Bear over to Kathy. Good friends are needed…especially on this day. Thank you Bill and Nancy!


Monday, February 12, 2018 – Kathy goes to work at her usual time. She will get off at noon so we can prepare for our trip to stay the night at the Hyatt House. Her 3rd session of Immunotherapy will take place tomorrow.

I head over to the mall. Her Pandora bracelet doesn’t have one charm on it from me so I decide to change that this Valentines Day. I pick out one that looks pretty to my untrained eye. I then stop at another store and get her some chocolate covered strawberries.

Kathy is already at home when I get back. I decide to leave the charm and a card in the glove box so she can find it once we get on the road to Memorial Sloan. This girl deserves her gift early!

I sneak the strawberries in so she can have a little something on the actual Valentines Day and we get packed. Once we get back to the truck I give her the charm and card. She is definitely cheered up!

We arrive to the Hyatt House at 3:30 PM. At 4:00 PM our room phone rings. It’s the manager telling me that their computer had a glitch in it and my credit card was denied. He tells me it wasn’t my card, but the system. I can come down to the lobby to give him the credit card info or do it over the phone.

Because we are so far from the front desk and I’m still using a crutch I decide to do it on the phone. I’m such an idiot!

That night after dinner I stop at the desk to ask if the problem was straightened out. “What problem,” was the response.

Long story short, I was scammed out of nearly $300 by the time I cancelled my card. Lesson here: Always go to the front desk!”

We enjoy a few hours of watching the Olympics then decide to turn-in for the night. Tomorrow will be Session 3 of Immunotherapy for Kathy.

Three weeks from now we will learn if this treatment is working to hold the cancer at bay. We are, and by we, I mean all of Team Fist Bump, are praying this is so. We love you all!

Paying It Forward The Best Way We Can!

My wife, Kathy was diagnosed with Stage 4 Lung Cancer last November. We have formed a support group for Kathy called Team Fist Bump and have quite a large following. We also publish a blog, OUR JOURNAL: Lessons, Love, & Fighting This Bastard Called Lung Cancer! Our most recent publication outside of the journal, Diagnosed With Cancer, What Now? Kathy’s Team Fist Bump Shares Their Experience, shares with those just starting down this terrifying path the knowledge, road blocks, false expectations, and organizations we studied and talked to between the day of Kathy’s diagnosis and her first session of treatment. Our blog site already has 2,900 views and over 4,400 followers! Perhaps Team Fist Bump can join hands with your organization or individual fund raising event to raise money to cover cancer related expenses.
Kathy has received great joy by attending my past author events, so what I propose is that Team Fist Bump join hands with your organization or individual event by setting up a table and autographing my two published books to help you raise money. I will purchase these books at a discount from my publisher so these sales will not contribute to my sales or author ranking stats in any way. I will purchase them at $5 and sell them for $10 or $12. I will need to keep $5 a copy to cover my expenses but the profits of $5-$7 per copy sold will go to your fundraiser. We realize that you do not want to create a carnival like atmosphere where various vendors set up tables and ply their wares. Please consider that this is all about bringing joy to my wife, helping out your fundraiser, and allowing Team Fist Bump members to take part in your event (I will certainly post these events for our “team” to see).
If you have any questions or need clarification on anything please feel free to contact me anytime.

Below, you will see the two books I will bring to your event. Click the titles for descriptions and reviews:

100a

The Adventures of Nick and Billy: The Mystery of the Rougarou

A Forsaken Soul Cover EBook Final

A Forsaken Soul

We are willing to attend fundraisers within 200 miles of Middletown, NY. Special circumstances may allow me to travel outside these areas, so contact me anyway! Please understand that my wife is currently undergoing cancer treatment so this offer is only available to those that have events when my calendar is free.

 

 

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All Events at book stores this year will be put on hold, unless a portion of your profits from my sells will go to the Lung Cancer Research Foundation, The American Cancer Society, or St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

Please share this publication so it can be seen by someone it might help! Thank you!!


If you, too, would like to show the world that you are a Team Fist Bump Member we can ship you as many as you like. The cost is $15 each, plus $5 shipping ($5 shipping is not per shirt, but per order). Here are three ways that you can place your order:

  • GoFundMe – Visit Team Fist Bump’s, GoFundMe page and make a donation in the amount your shirts will cost (plus shipping if applicable). BE SURE to add in comments: “T-shirts,” along with the quantity and sizes in your order.
  • PayPal – Use your PayPal account to send your payment to my account: mwhoard@yahoo.com. Because I use this account to process book orders also, please BE SURE to add in comments: “T-shirts,” along with the quantity and sizes in your order. Also, make sure your address is included.
  • Cash – Many of you work with Kathy and me, or live near by. If you would like to save in shipping fees just flag one of us down or give us a call.

If you have any questions feel free to email me by clicking here. I’ll get back to you as soon as I can.

Just a reminder that these t-shirts are in Adult sizes (I haven’t got them in Ladies yet). If we run out, your order will be added to a list for the next order I place.

Also, please send pictures of you wearing the shirts so I can start adding them to Our Journal. We would love to see how far Team Fist Bump has spread from it’s home base in Middletown, NY!

Bill_Nancy

In Montgomery, NY, our dear friends Bill and Nancy are the first to receive their official Team Fist Bump Member T-shirts. Wear them proudly!!!