After starting our goal to hike the Pacific Crest Trail, cancer surprised us. Between surgeries, chemotherapy, radiation, and side effects, we found our focus and continued to hike mountains. An inspiration and resource guide for cancer patients, loved ones, and hikers, it is my personal journal, hiking blog entries and essays on cancer. Every survivor story is different. Here is mine. More
I am a wife, mother, and a nurse. I am a Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) section hiker. Now, I am a breast cancer survivor. As a nurse, I have had plenty of patients with cancer, but nothing truly prepared me for having cancer myself.
We started our bucket list item of backpacking the PCT four months before I was diagnosed. We hiked 122 miles through the summer of 2012. In September, we celebrated our 25th anniversary with a five day hike. Our three adult children were all in college, doing well. I just won the biggest award possible at my job. I couldn't have been more healthier, happier, or more successful.
At 9 pm, on October 4th, my world crumbled with just one short sentence. "Patti, you have cancer."
The cancer was aggressive and invasive. It required a year of treatments. I was sure my hiking days were over. Eventually, I found a focus to deal with my cancer. It was to continue hiking the PCT. In between surgeries, chemotherapy treatments, radiation, multiple infections, baldness, a roller coaster of emotions and chemo brain; my husband and I hiked, and hiked, and hiked another 245 miles.
Through my experiences, I went from angry, to determined, to acceptance.
This book is intended to be a resource guide and inspiration for cancer patients, and those who love and support them. Live your life, not cancer. For hikers out there, we have resources and information about section hiking the PCT and ways to help prepare for the trail. This is not a walk in the park. This book is an accumulation of my personal journal, blog entries about our hikes, and essays on cancer.
Every cancer survivor story is different. Here is mine.
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