In November 2006 some results discovered in routine blood work by my primary care physician caused that physician to refer me to an oncologist for further testing/diagnosis. After meeting with the oncologist, additional lab work and a bone marrow biopsy were performed. These results led to a diagnosis of pre-malignant multiple myeloma. Since then I remain under the amazing care of a capable oncologist at the University of Virginia’s Cancer Center.

Every six months lab work is repeated as a routine part of a follow-up examination with my oncologist. When I received the original referral, I almost didn’t make the appointment with the oncologist as I previously ovarian/cervical cancer in 1985 (hysterectomy/ovaries removed) in 1985 and believed my good fortune since that time had been taken away. Fear is a very powerful thing, and while I ‘almost’ let it paralyze me, the more I read online and the more I talked to others, I knew I had to get past the fear and make that appointment.

Now I look forward to those appointments and lab results, they are the markers in my life that give me hope and strength and joy in going forward with everyday life. As of this writing I remain pre-malignant. Medication/treatment have not been recommended yet.

Please if you are reading this and even ‘think’ you might need to seek opinions/testing/help with understanding and living with any state of MM, take some action, take  control of your life, be your own advocate. I learn something each and every day about this disease and I am no longer frightened, quite the opposite, the more I know and understand the more empowered I feel. Something else to remember is that you are not alone in this.  There are people like me who wake up and go to bed each day praying for all those facing MM.

— Patricia H.

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