New Mother Battling Stage 3 Breast Cancer during COVID-19 #S

New Mother Battling Stage 3 Breast Cancer during COVID-19 #S

From Francia Thelusma

Please donate to help Connie conquer Stage 3 breast cancer Connie Sun lives in Seoul, Korea with her husband and 11-month-old son. She was born and raised in Singapore, but moved to Korea to marry her husband in 2012.

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Please donate to help Connie conquer Stage 3 breast cancer

Connie Sun lives in Seoul, Korea with her husband and 11-month-old son.  She was born and raised in Singapore, but moved to Korea to marry her husband in 2012.  She was diagnosed with stage 3 pregnancy associated breast cancer (PABC) on March 5th, 2020 while breastfeeding her then 9-month-old son. 

For regular updates on Connie's cancer journey follow her on Facebook at "Stronger Together 

This is Connie's story...

Finding out that I had breast cancer was a great shock to me, as I had a scan in July 2019 and it was all clear. To know that the cancer had also spread to two lymph nodes was an even greater shock. I never thought that I would be entering a new season categorized as a “cancer patient”. But this wasn’t the first time in my life that I had faced a serious illness….In 2009, while living in Singapore, after having muscle weakness and stiffening limbs for more than a year, I was told that I had ALS (also known as Lou Gehrig's disease). The weakness that had started in my left hand slowly affected my walking and my left leg. My left leg was completely inward turned and my whole body often ended up in spasms. Since doctors in Singapore had no further treatment plan for me, I travelled to China to seek alternative treatment. There, the doctors never thought they would be able to heal me and often told me all they wanted to do was to make me more comfortable and try to improve my quality of life. Despite doctors telling me that I would only have 2-5 years of life, I never once believed it. In November 2011, after being in a wheelchair for 3 years, I started walking again. My leg was no longer inward turned and I could live a normal life again. God had healed me from an ‘incurable’ disease.After hearing my cancer diagnosis, like anyone else, I was first thrown into despair. I did not want to walk through another season of treatment and receive help from people. It’s not that I don’t like help, but I thought my season of receiving was over. I wanted to bless people with what I had been given. I was ready to serve those who were sick. I was sharing the testimony of God’s power in my life through my ALS experience with those who had lost hope. Many worries flooded my mind, with the greatest one being my son. He was our baby miracle, conceived through IVF and the mighty power of God. I wanted to be there for him as he grew up.

Due to COVID-19, both Connie and her husband have lost their jobs. Stage 3 breast cancer needs aggressive treatment, but this treatment does not qualify for government insurance.

My good friend, Maren, quickly formed a support group for me and together they prayed for me. I was reminded of what I had told God as a young believer. I asked him to use me, to mold me and to grow me.I still do not know what God’s plan is, but I know that He is still with me. I was filled with an immense amount of peace and that peace has sustained me. The road ahead is tough but I know I am not alone; my family isn’t alone. God is with us! 

Tentative Treatment Plan

Hospital: Gangnam Severance Hospital, Seoul, South KoreaType of cancer: HER2+, with grade 3 tumor and metastatic tumors in two lymph nodes.1) 6 cycles of TCHP chemotherapy every 20 days2) Surgery to remove the cancerous tumor and affected lymph nodes3) 12 cycles of chemotherapy4) Radiation

Estimated Costs

The nature of my cancer means that some experimental drugs have to be used, which are not covered by Korean health insurance

1) 6 cycles of TCHP chemotherapy: Docetaxel, Carboplatin, Herceptin, and Perjeta6 cycles = 12 million KRW ≈ S$13,9202) Cost of surgery is unknown at this time3) 12 additional cycles of chemotherapy which includes the experimental drug, Kadcyla12 cycles = 60 million KRW ≈ S$70,000 for the drugs alone4) Radiation cost is unknown at this time

In total, estimated costs are: 100 million KRW ≈ SGD$ 114,000.

Current Situation

I have been the primary wage earner for several years now: teaching English and working as a translator. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, I lost my teaching job in March 2020 and, because of my cancer treatment, I am also unable to carry on working at this time.Due to the travel constraints of COVID-19, we have moved forward with treatment in Korea. Korean hospital practices are a little different than in the West: you need to have a helper with you for your hospital stay. My husband has had to take on this role as we cannot afford to pay someone. This has resulted in no income for my family ever since my treatment began.

This campaign has been verified. 100% of all donations will go towards paying Connie's hospital bills.

Thank you in advance for your support and may the Lord bless you greatly.With love,Connie (and my family)

A message from Maren, leading Connie’s support group

I have been working to help Connie and her family since the moment she received the diagnosis.  My story with Connie goes back to our joint pregnancies and the birth of her son where I was her birth doula. Never in my lifetime did I imagine that I would become her 'cancer doula' within a year.No donation is too small; many small donations can make a huge difference. Thank you in advance for your support.

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