Wednesday, September 21, 2011

My Friend, Karen

Howdy there friends!

In another effort to use our blog for good and not evil, I'd love to introduce you to my friend, Karen.  We've been friends with Karen for many, many years now and just think that she is fantastic.  Many of you may know Karen too and I'd love to hear anything you have to say about her, since I know that nobody has anything bad to say about her!

Karen works in the high school ministry with us and is unbelievably committed to her group of sophomore girls at our church.  I'm inspired by her love, commitment and the influence that she has had on hundreds and hundreds of students throughout the years.  She also works full-time as a teacher for autistic students in one of our local elementary schools.  I honestly can't tell you how much respect and admiration Gavin and I both have for her.  Karen has been a huge advocate for Ovarian Cancer research, has been featured in a handful of newspaper articles and has even traveled to Washington DC recently to share her story and petition for funding and research.  She's just plain ol' amazing.

Plus, she's hilarious.  I mean, really, really funny.

This January, I'm running a half-marathon with a group of ladies called "Team Karen" in an effort to raise some extra cash for our friend during this difficult time.  If any of you feel led to donate to her cause, please let me know and I'll get you all of the info.  Any little bit helps!

There is a brand spankin' new facebook page just created for Team Karen 2012 if you'd like to stop by and check it out.

Also, Karen has a blog if you'd like to hear more from her.

Here's a note one of our friends wrote about Karen and "Team Karen" -

A little bit about Karen Adams:

In December of 2008 Karen was having pain in her lower right side. The pain continued for at least 2 weeks so she decided to go to the doctor to get things checked out. Doctors ruled out appendicitis but decided to send her for a CT scan. 45 minutes after the scan she got a call that changed everything. She was told she had masses on both her ovaries. The next day,December 31, 2008, she saw a doctor who told her she was pretty sure these masses and the other small tumors found on the scan were the result of ovarian cancer.

Karen was 34 years old and was told she needed to have a radical hyterectomy and would never have the chance to have children of her own. The doctors also told her that the survival rate for this cancer was around 30% over 5 years. On January 12, 2009 Karen had a 5 1/2 hour surgery to remove all of her reproductive organs and cancerous tumors that had spread throughout her abdomen, colon, and into her diaphragm. She spent 2 weeks recovering in the hospital, including 5 days in ICU where the doctors kept her sedated because the surgery they performed was so intense she needed the sedation to heal properly. Karen was told she had stage 4 ovarian cancer and even with chemo she had a 25% chance of making it to age 40.

That was not a good day.

Karen has continued to fight. She went through 19 rounds of initial chemotherapy and praises God her body handled the drugs so well. She was in remission for about 9 months, when in April of 2011 she began to have more symptoms and a CT scan showed a few small tumors. Karen is currently back on a different chemotherapy drug and will be getting her 5th dose of Doxil next week.

She has continued to work because it has been the best way for her to keep some normalcy in her life.

In January 2012, a group of Karen supporters (Team Karen 2012) will be participating in a half marathon as a way to support and raise funds for Karen’s cause.

While the event is not a fundraiser and donations are not tax deductible, we are asking family, friends and all other Karen supporters to prayerfully consider assisting her with financial support.

A savings account has been opened in Karen’s name. Should she need to exceed her allotted ten days of sick leave this school year, we hope to assist with resources that will allow her to pay necessary bills and allow her the financial freedom to stay home if feeling ill and recovering from treatments.

On behalf of Karen, thank you for checking out this page, and thank you for your support! Please contact any of the team members if you are interested in donating.

Team Karen 2012 is...
Bridget Dimaggio Luke
Courtney Creel
Crystal Vasquez
Deana Parkins
Dora McKean
Kate Steinbarger
Kerry Harvey
Kim Cross
Kim Milward
Michele Turner
Patty Brem
Ryane Parkins
Tami Creel
Terri Hawkins

Here is a link to another article featuring Karen:

I swiped all of these photos off of her facebook! 

Thank you!  Go Team Karen!

1 comment:

  1. visiting from carina's;)
    you are the sweetest.

    wow! thanks for sharing about karen! what a fabulous lady.
    and i notice in that last photo that she's a jaycee award recipient ...holla from a former chapter secretary;)