More than "Pink-tober" awareness, women with Stage 4 breast cancer need each other—in special support groups such as one at Virginia Piper Cancer Institutes at Unity Hospital in Fridley.
Star Tribune columnist Gail Rosenblum talked to two such women who live in Minneapolis and belong to the group at Unity:
Beth Herold never will see cancer "as a gift," but she doesn't fault those who do. She's not much for pink, either, even though she has breast cancer.
Herold, 44, of Fridley, has stage 4, or metastatic, breast cancer. That means it has spread to other organs -- 10 organs in her case.
That also means she avoids traditional support groups. "You don't want to wreck their hope," Herold said. ...
"We can talk about hospice, planning our funeral," Herold said. "We don't cry that much there. We pick celebrating our lives, rather than surviving our lives."
Tina Ogren, joining Herold over coffee last week, nods in agreement. ... Ogren, who lives with her boyfriend in Fridley, is looking forward to participating in a clinical trial, balancing her emotions between "being hopeful and realistic."