In early July 2020, my cousin Karen DeBias was diagnosed with Stage II Breast Cancer, (bi-lateral invasive ductal carcinoma), having a total of 6 tumors in both breasts. Her case was unique & challenging in that Karen’s cancer is different in each breast. Karen began Chemotherapy in August of 2021 receiving six rounds of TCHP, or what is referred to as "hard chemo" treatments with adverse side effects. Karen was hospitalized for several days after four of the six treatments for severe dehydration. Adverse side effects prevented Karen from working full-time over the course of the four-month chemotherapy treatments. Of course, because of the Pandemic, there was very little petsitting business reservations as Karen's Petsitting Clients were NOT taking any extended vacations, and for the most part, 98% of her midday weekday petsitting clients were working from home. As a result, Karen lost 95% of her business income from March 2020 to present day, and the business income has not yet come back. She is hoping that when the COVID vaccines are distributed and individuals become immune to COVID-19 her Clients will once again be making petsitting reservations with Karen, and she will once again begin taking petsitting reservations. A bit of good news here - - - Karen's Chemotherapy treatments were very successful, (thank God for small miracles), and there has been a substantial reduction of the number and size of the cancerous tumors in both breasts! AND, Karen has been blessed with excellent health insurance along with an AFLAC Cancer Insurance Policy, so ALL of her medical/health needs have been met. Still, Karen will be continuing her lengthy Cancer team's protocol. In order to eradicate any rogue cancer cells remaining, Karen will have a double mastectomy at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago combined with stage one of breast reconstruction on December 30, 2020. At the same time, every 3 weeks Karen will be receiving Immunotherapy, one specific biological drug called Herceptin via IV infusion at the Delnor Cancer Center in Geneva, Illinois, for the next nine months. Immunotherapy is a targeted IV therapy which disrupts the DNA/RNA sequencing of any remaining cancer cells so the cancer cells do not replicate and it causes cancer cell death. Following that, Karen will be required have targeted radiation treatments in early Spring and she will be taking weekly Rx med estrogen blockers for 5-10 years to prevent any reoccurrence of the cancer. So why are we telling you all of this? Many of Karen's friends, family, co-workers past & present, high school friends, college friends, Facebook friends, Petsitting Clients & Acquaintances have asked her "How can I help, what can I do? Well....Karen experienced a double whammy, the loss of her business income as a result of the Pandemic, AND she has not been in a good place health wise to rebuild her petsitting business because of the adverse side effects of the four-month long chemotherapy. You should know that just because the chemotherapy is completed does not mean that she will immediately bounce back - - it can take months or even a year before a body ravaged with chemotherapy treatments and their adverse side effects can fully recover. Karen has utilized all of her savings to date in keeping from losing her small business that she has built over the past 14 years, and is now asking for your help in getting her through the remainder of her lengthy cancer treatment protocol. We are starting two campaigns on behalf of Karen to help her: the first campaign is called "Give In Kind", and the second campaign is a "Go Fund Me" account. Give In Kind gives the Donor an option of purchasing electronic gift cards that are emailed direct to Karen that she can utilize these gift cards at stores and restaurants as the need arises, and the Go Fund Me account gives the Donor the option of sending cash for living expenses to help Karen get through the next several months of her cancer treatment protocol. Any donation is welcome , no matter how small, every little bit helps!
You can also donate via Karen's Go Fund Me page.