Tuesday, November 28, 2017


MOST foods and drinks I don't have an issue with as long as I take my time and/or chew properly.

Diet Pepsi is NOT included in this!!! Every now and then, I crave a Diet Pepsi (regular sodas have WAY too much sugar for this stomachless gal) and will give it a shot as things that didn't work yesterday, sometimes will work today and visa versa. NOPE, not Diet Pepsi. I SWEAR this is the MOST carbonated and fizzy beverage IN THE WORLD (other diet sodas do NOT bother me)...an...d not just any Diet Pepsi, it has to be BOTTLED Diet Pepsi. The PAIN that comes from the amount of carbonation is AWFUL. So, why do I continue to try it from time to time?? I have NO idea...maybe it comes from the fact that I CAN'T have it, so I want it that much more. I'm hoping my system will maybe just work itself out and let me have it so I can get off this bottled Diet Pepsi kick!


Monday, November 27, 2017


Did you know that seahorses don't have stomachs, either??

LOVE this addition to my Christmas tree! Most beautiful seahorse I've ever seen!


I overdid it, but man oh man was it worth it!!!

Happy Thanksgiving!!! My heart has never felt as full as it does this year. I have so much to be thankful for and that feels so good!!!!

Wednesday, November 22, 2017


When it, sometimes, feels like the whole world is against you with this mutation, you MUST find your WHY.  We talked about this a LOT in LA at the Spotlight on Gastric Cancer- A Night of Healing.

This little girl right here, Miss Paige, is MY WHY.  Without her, I'm not sure I would have done this surgery, let alone tested for the CDH1 mutation.  I can't say, for sure, that I wouldn't have done either, but I know that SHE is my reason behind wanting to be here for the long term, if possible.  I hope and pray that I will be able to watch her grow into a beautiful young lady, graduate high school and college, get married, and have babies.  These are all things my mom was unable to be here for due to Hereditary Diffuse Gastric Cancer (HDGC) taking her life.  So, if you choose NOT to test or do this surgery for yourself and you know there is the chance of testing positive, find your WHY and make that your primary focus.  I have not regretted my decision since day one and am SO thankful that I was given this option to be preventative.  I hope I can stick around for a very long time for this little cutie in the picture!  What or who is YOUR why?



My cousin, Stacie , had her total gastrectomy (stomach removed) 3 weeks ago TODAY. She just got home over the weekend due to some complications. She had an endoscopy in October and it came back CLEAR. ONE....I REPEAT ONE MONTH LATER...she has her TG and pathology shows TWO spots of CANCER!!!! No chemo or radiation needed, but she will still need to meet with an oncologist. Just think if she would have waited another 6 months to do another endoscopy and/or surgery where she might be. This cancer is so quick to spread and the only way to detect it is with an endoscopy as it doesn't show up on any kind of x-ray or scan! I am so happy and thankful, even with the complications she has had, that she chose to do this surgery and I'm sure she agrees!


Pushing that B12 at the checkouts!! HAHA!

Thursday, November 16, 2017


One of my most favorite days of the month...not because I enjoy giving myself an injection, but because I look forward to the energy I will gain from my B12!! I give myself injections 1x/month.
Did you know your body NEEDS B12 to function and without a stomach you are not able to absorb this very important vitamin? Injections or sublingual B12 tablets are CRUCIAL for the stomachless!! It takes about 2 years for your body to deplete what you have stored up for B12 and when that 2 years hits, you're pretty much a walking dead zombie and playing catch-up can be a nightmare! B12 is one thing I am very thankful for!!!!

Tuesday, November 14, 2017


Here is the video of my speech from the No Stomach for Cancer- A Night of Healing.
It got cut off at the end, so the ending is below.... :)
Having supper with stomachless friends while in LA was awesome AND hilarious at the same time!!!

The waiter comes to our table to take our order. Nicole and I decided we should share the 1/4 chicken and sides. He couldn't believe this and talked us into splitting the 1/2 chicken and sides instead (we should have stuck with splitting the 1/4 chicken). Steve and Jessica ordered regular meals, but boy-oh-boy did our waiter get after Steve to order a larger meal because he was... the "guy" at our table. He let him know that he was going to still be HUNGRY after his small meal. Steve told him that he was a diet. (HAHAHA) We were ROLLING with laughter and our waiter thought he was a stand up comedian....little did he know, he was dropping ALL the right lines to a table full of stomachless people. We never did go into the fact that we are stomachless and the majority of stomachless people do NOT get hungry and can only eat so little. I think our waiter was surprised when he came back to see how much food was left over in the end.

We had, also, eaten at the Spaghetti Factory and when someone mentioned there were a few of us with who didn't have stomachs, our waitress said, "Ya...I sometimes feel that way, too." WHAT?! BAHAHAH....no, for real....like we don't have stomachs!!!
Steve and myself on the left
Jessica, in the back, and Nicole, in the front, on the right


I did an interview with Blair from the Bismarck Tribune a few weeks ago about my story.  She let me know that it was going to be in Sunday's paper in the Health Section.  While in LA, I got an email from Blair letting me know that it would actually be in Monday's paper.  Much to my surprise, it was on the FRONT page with a ginormous picture attached!!!  ALSO, EVERY OTHER NEWSPAPER in NORTH DAKOTA picked up my story and was, often, listed on their FIRST PAGE, too....the Fargo Forum, Grand Forks Herald, Dickinson Press, Jamestown Sun, etc.  Besides that, it was a TOP STORY and that means people were truly interested in reading about this!!!  Oh how my heart could just burst!

I am SO thankful that there was no other MAJOR news going on that MY story could be on THE FIRST PAGE and shared SO many times.  Knowledge is power and I'm so happy that this information about CDH1, gastric cancer, and total gastrectomies is out there!!!


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Friday, November 10, 2017


Well, I made it to Los Angeles for the Spotlight on Gastric Cancer yesterday where my Aunt Kathy was able to pick me up. We got to spend some good quality time together with great conversation.

Once we got to the motel, I went down to meet with the crew that is here from No Stomach for Cancer (the Executive Director and 3 board members), along with the other speakers (Jessica and Nicole, the Stomachless Sisters and Steve Dang). It would be an understatement if I said my heart wasn't overflowing with love when I came back to my room!!! Every.single.one of these people are simply amazing and I cannot wait to get to spend more time with them this evening and all day tomorrow!

What an empowering and uplifting group of people....my heart is incredibly full!!! ❤

Tuesday, November 7, 2017


I LOVE telling people about life without a stomach and I REALLY get a kick out of telling and explaining it to medical professionals!
I saw a medical doctor on Friday for something non-TG related. Our conversation went something like this, when going over my health history...
Doctor, "Why did you have a total gastrectomy?"
I explained how my mom and grandpa both passed from stomach cancer and I was being preventative given my odds of having an 83% chance of getting it with a ...4% chance of survival. Those weren't odds I was willing to go up against and this was the only thing that would GUARENTEE I would not get the same cancer that killed my mom and grandpa. It's similar to someone choosing to have a mastectomy due to a BRCA mutation.
Doctor, "So, how exactly does that work?"
HAHAHA....here it goes......and I gave the best, but shortest answer I could. I'm all about informing others, but it surprises when I have to tell a medical doctor "how it works."

Wednesday, November 1, 2017


If you are from North Dakota, you are most likely a Carson Wentz fan.  He is the Quarterback for the Philadelphia Eagles and comes from Bismarck, ND (where I currently live) and is a graduate of NDSU (in Fargo, ND- where I was raised).  I have NEVER heard one negative thing about this gentleman...he is a kind and caring soul.  I have never met him, but his dad, Doug Wentz, was our mortgage lender and was an amazing man...it's clear to see where he gets his kindness from.

I am, now, an even BIGGER fan of Carson Wentz.  What a kind person he is to grant this young boys wish through Make-a-Wish AND, without even knowing it, shed light on GASTRIC CANCER (which is the THIRD leading cause of cancer deaths).  If you haven't watched this video, please do so...in its entirety...and grab a box of tissues!!!  I'm a tough cookie, or so I like to think, and the end really got me good!