A crummy economy, two wars, crazy people with explosives in their underwear–and, for many of us, a cancer diagnosis. It’s time to say “so long” to the decade of the naughts. Still, it has been a good decade for me in many ways. I became a grandmother for the first time, and it’s difficult to top that. Also, I was able to retire from my academic position and focus on my writing. I am 3.5 years post-diagnosis. My husband and I are fortunate to be healthy enough to hike at our Colorado cabin–and to have the cabin. And we have two great kids, a wonderful son-in-law, and that dear grandson.
I am optimistic about the coming decade for all of us. Researchers are spending more and more time looking for TNBC cures and treatment. And I am especially pleased to see so much research on health and fitness, on the at-home treatment we can control ourselves–diet and exercise, especially.
At the beginning of the decade, TNBC was barely recognized as a sub-group of cancer. Now, researchers are looking at subsets of TNBC. The Human Genome Project has opened up an understanding of the genetic definition of diseases, showing us that not all TNBC is created the same. Our unique DNA, they now say, creates a unique cancer.
I once wrote an article titled “The Wallflowers at the Breast Cancer Prom,” in which I talked about how the research focus was on the “popular” cancer–hormone positive, ignoring those of us with hormone-negative. I no longer feel that way. I feel like we’re out on the dance floor. And we’re surviving long enough to get back to the tango of our lives. And, on especially good days, the salsa.