Jennifer Goodman Linn You Fearless

Life’s a Beach

Dave and I rented a house in Long Beach Island, New Jersey for the week to celebrate my mom and dad’s 45th anniversary. It has been 5 years since all 8 of us (my parents, my brother, sister-in law, nephews and Dave and me) spent a vacation together and we were so looking forward to it. We got a great house with a pool, Jacuzzi and enough bedrooms for everyone. The weather forecast was great and we arranged the week so that Dave’s parents would visit for the first few days, Dave and I would have a day or two to ourselves, and then my family would join for the last few. It was a perfect way to celebrate the end of the summer!

All I had to do before heading to the beach on Saturday morning was to get chemo on Friday. Everything was running smoothly and we were about to begin my treatment when I shared with my nurse that I was starting to experience low-level abdominal pain and belly “fullness”…symptoms that I had previously when the tumors were growing. Since I am not one to complain, she took my symptoms seriously, spoke with my oncologist and they decided to expedite my CT scan before I started chemo (it was originally set for right after Labor Day).
The results were not what we were hoping for. We discovered that unfortunately the past few chemo regimens have not been effective so my tumors have grown. My oncologist and surgeon spoke and they agreed that the next best step is to remove the tumors with surgery # 6 (set for Tuesday, 9/14). Not sure what plans are post surgery. One option might be a promising new trial (funded with Cycle for Survival dollars - amazing!).
What news to get right before heading out for vacation! But I had been looking way too forward to this vacation to let the news put a damper on our week. I took long walks on the beach, swam in the pool, spent quality time with my family and ate a lot of ice-cream knowing the pounds will soon be coming off.
Dave and I are hanging in there. We have been in this position before and we are treating this surgery as no different than the others. While I am really NOT looking forward to being immobile and in pain again, it also always puts things in immediate perspective. I am lucky to be alive and be surrounded by such supportive friends and family.
As always, we will be posting updates on this blog so that is, by far, the best way to stay in the loop ( My blog will soon have an exciting new design (and you will be redirected to a new site) that you will see but the content will still be the same.
I am hoping that I won't be in the hospital for more than a week. Feel free to directly send me notes and messages...they make me happy! But also please understand that I might not get back to you. Also please email me a fun picture of you/your family this week that I can print out and hang in my hospital room so that I am surrounded by love (
You all have been so supportive over the past several years so please continue to just do the same. And get ready to register for Cycle for Survival ( ...the dollars raised in 2010 alone have already gone into 10 trials to help a wide range of rare cancers! Putting your time and your influence behind growing the event is by far the best way you can help me and so many other patients.
We love you and thank you for being such amazing friends to us.