Photo Story: Trust Without Borders Part 1
A few weeks ago E (my 15mo)fell and hit his head, he was perfectly fine in the end. Babies bonk their heads often so my first response was just comfort until I realized he wasn't making eye contact and had given me his full weight becoming limp in my arms. We were in at the children's library where there wasn't much more than 15 people. 911 was called and his unresponsive state only lasted for about minute and then took him a bit to return to normal. That minute felt like a decade. I had nothing to offer except mothers comfort and the quickness to call on people who new more than me. That was my first taste of feeling absolute helplessness in regards to my children. (Harper has had his head glued but somehow blood seems manageable; it has a source and I have a sewing kit if we were in dire need.) It's a feeling I hope I never have to feel again, but I hear as our children grow it's inevitable.
This past summer I met a strong, beautiful woman who has been existing in that "helpless" sort of space going on three years. Her son was born with a genetic skin condition called Ichthyosis. And when he was 12 months old they found out he had Chiari Malformation, a large arachnoid cyst and after his first of six surgeries discovered hydrocephalus. You can read more about Lincoln’s journey on their update blog: Loving Lincoln James
Because of Lincolns brain malformations his genetics were sent to be tested and because often it’s easier for them to investigate by having the parents samples, Kaysie’s were sent off too. As Kaysie and her husband sifted through the results, much made sense but one took them by surprise: BRCA2 which indicates breast cancer. As she was processing what this could mean for her and her family one truth rose to the surface: Lincoln saved her life.
As she was processing what this could mean for her and her family one truth rose to the surface: Lincoln saved her life.
She proceeded with screenings and found out a bit about the BRCA2 gene (and educated me!). Essentially the BRCA1 & 2 genes help prevent DNA inside your cells and helps cancer from developing BUT when the gene isn’t working properly it "can lead to cancer in the cells of your organs like the breast which is prone to cancer in BRCA carriers.” See the handy infograph below for more of the info:
After her results the journey continued as she met with cancer specialists with the support of her husband and made the informed decision to have a Bilateral Prophylactic Mastectomy (double mastectomy); for which she has all my respect. After their choice plan of action Kaysie went in to have biopsies done on both breasts where they found cancerous cells in her left milk ducts. With moving forward with the double mastectomy plan, Kaysie won’t need chemo. She is what they call a “previvor”.
I had already done a family session earlier this summer and we immediately connected as friends, it broke my heart to hear the news but was excited and honored to be asked to help share her journey. She’s shared many times how heartbreaking it is to let go of parts of her body that nourished all three of her children. As a result and to help her process, she wants to help bring awareness so other women would be encouraged to get tested.
The beach at sunset felt the most appropriate setting to start telling her story and she’s chosen “Trust Without Borders” as her story title after a beautiful worship song by Hillsong, the words: Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders / Let me walk upon the waters / Wherever You would call me / Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander / And my faith will be made stronger / In the presence of my Savior.
For continued updates follow Kaysie’s blog, Saved by Lincoln where she writes: "I have had this overwhelming feeling to share my Journey, in a Raw and Passionate way.” And/or her Instagram Trust Without Borders.