Caroline Wrisley, Survivor

 

I was 44 years old, an active, healthy, non-smoker, long distance runner, nurse, wife and mother of two teenagers when life changed forever. In February 2017, I was diagnosed with stage 3 lung cancer. I promise I was the last person you would have thought to develop this disease. I’ve since learned that lung cancer does not discriminate.

After coming to grips with this diagnosis, my treatment included a lobectomy, chemotherapy and radiation to my entire mediastinum. That sounds so “matter of fact” now, but it was physically and emotionally difficult, and even though it was my reality it still seems so surreal. Today, I am happy to report that I have been cancer-free for 2 years and I am so blessed to still be a wife, mother and nurse. I’ve traded distance running for yoga and continue to adjust my life in ways I had never considered.

Cancer treatment significantly changed my body (decreased lung capacity and the effects of chemo and radiation). I am still adjusting to my new “normal” but I am appreciative of every day and the things I can/will accomplish. I hope that my story helps bring awareness that anyone can get this disease. I am proud to be a part of raising money and awareness for lung cancer support and research through the amazing work of the Lung Cancer Initiative.

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