Even though I have not blogged before; have decided that this maybe very good therapy and perhaps motivate and/or bless you all in some way.  In Jan. of 2004, was diagnosed with stage III breast cancer; had 31 positive lymph nodes and left breast removed.  Then, 6 months of chemo and radiation.  I always say "I did not know I was suppposed to die then or I would have".  Simply because not unlike, I am sure many of you,  The said I had a 20% chance of living for 5 years.

Then, in November of 2005, it spread to my neck.  Had surgery and all was well.  Certainly, some challenging long-term side affects of all the drugs, however, I was alive.  I believed then and still do believe to this day that God kept me alive to mentor others with all forms of cancer.  So, besides always keeping up the fight to stay live (dealing with traditional healthcare providers, searching for complementary therapy and struggling to figure out how to obtain the expensive Aromasin $379.00  month oral chemo meds, constantly struggling with day to day bills and expenses), I had time to speak to groups of all sizes about "surviving and faith".  I always felt confident that if God and I could do it then "anyone, with God's help, could do it."

In November of last year, we most reluctantly lost our home (husband's retirement was cut by 35%), happily managed to move ourselves to Chandler Arizona where we could walk in the sunshine nearly every single day and spend time with our 19 year old college grandson who lived with us.

I even was able (finally, after many moths of planning) was able to design and prepare for market my very own photo note cards with photos taken and signed my myself.  Another blessing. 

I was even allowed to bring my photo note cards to the yogo studio in chandler where I was provided with "unending" free yoga lessons.  Syd is such a sweet, kind and understanding lady.  She even allowed me to "begin" using my Reiki master talents at the studio as well. 

Well, then it was time for our very much anticipated and planned for , trip back to Wisconsin.  The plan was to purchase a modest camper, thereby enabling us to travel around WI for the summer visiting famiy and friends.  We left Arizona around May 25th and my June 1st we had taken me to the emergency room for treatment for we hope was pneumonia.  Today, On July 16; I am sitting outside of my beautiful camper (in my sister's back yard) simply loving he sunshine and summer breezes of Wi.  The cancer has returned with a vengence.  Pleural of lungs, lungs, right breast, ribs, sternum, spine, neck and the list goes on and on.  Now, I am thanking God for having kept me alive long enough to mentor many people, tell all those I love how much I love them, to celebrate birthdays, one high school graduation, one black belt in karate,  tea parties, write many letters of gratitude and the list goes on and on.  God has had and clearly still does have a very heavy and decisive plan for me.  Even though I am extremely sad to leave my daughters, spouse, grandkids, mother, siblings, friends and relaltives; I am looking forward to whatever other wonderful opportunities God has in store for me.  Only on another level.  Thank you for allowing me this time and space.   Karen M Nelson, 1509 200th Ave., NewRichmond, WI.  54017i

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Karen, I am sitting here in tears of joy and inspiration for how gracefully you are facing life and destiny. I only wish I had the courage and strength to live in the moment the way you are. To be positive about what life has (and is) giving you, instead of focusing on the ugly parts of cancer. It sounds like you have a very rich and loving life, with friends and family that love you. Thank you for reminding me to live with dignity and love for every situation, person, life, etc.

Could you post some of your photos on this site? I would love to see your work.
Regina: How nice to hear from you and to hear your encouraging words. My guess is that you are touched or have someone very close to you touched by the disease of cancer? Thank you for reminding me to live with dignity and love for every situation, person, left, etc. What a challenge and thanks for prayers and thoughts.
What awe inspiring grace, wisdom and spirit you have as you face the challenges of cancer. Your loved ones are in deed blessed to have you in their lives where you will always always be.
I hold you in the light.
Namaste. Trish
Thanks Karen, this post is amazing and lovely. I wish you so much peace and comfort. -Liz.
My friend Karen:
From our first conversation about Yoga Bear it was obvious to me how beautifully your spirit shines. Your enthusiasm to share your love and joy with others left an indelible impression with me. And now as you continue this journey, you again lift me up with your inspiration of courage, strength and love! Your family and friends are so blessed to have you in their lives. Your strength is amazing.
Please stay in touch with me - and upon your return to Arizona I will make the opportunity to meet you personally. May support meet you at every turn! You will remain in my prayers!
Sherrill Prideaux Smith
Thanks for the most kind note. Actually, I am not planning to return to Arizona, however, that does not mean it could not happen. Some great miracle!
Thank you dear lady for your encouraging and uplifting words. They all mean a great deal to me at this time. Was hospitalized for 3 days over weekend and that did not go so very well. Attempting to cont. inue to count my blessings. thank you
Dearest Karen-
My prayers and love will reach you in WI. Thank you, thank you my friend..........
Sherrill Prideaux Smith
Thank you Karen for sharing your beautiful thoughts w/ us. I have no words for you to ease your pain but just by reading this blog you have enriched my life. I have lost many family members to cancer, have watched my sister endure & survive 4 cancers & am a survivor myself. My journey has been extremely easy so my focus has been on helping others. You are a BLESSING to many. May you find peace in knowing your fight has not been in vain but rather you have made a scrumptious batch of lemonade w/ your lemons.
Peaceful Blessings,
Dear Karen,
You sound very much alive to me! And, not out of options yet, since I know many persons that have been told there are no other options, they have found new options: check this listserv out http://www.bclist.org/ . No doubt that when we are called 'home' and our bodies expire, that is part of the human /Divine plan, and in the meantime, we live each day like all others. I don't believe that any 'hope' is false hope, it is our birthright to wake up and be hopeful. I also accept that surrendering to destiny, as Regina says, is hopeful.
Please read Page 64 in Thursday, July 01, 2010 issue of LIVESTRONG on line. Blessings, Jean


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