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7/23/06

Dear Kim:

I am back in Chicago. This certainly has been the year for traveling.

I came back through to see my sister’s oncologist and the verdict is in.

Between Laurel’s recent ovarian cancer and my own breast cancer, I am at risk for ovarian cancer as well.

Last summer, I was tested for the Bracha gene, which would definitively establish my risk factor. When I found that I didn’t have it, I thought I was out of the woods.

But my sister’s doctor and other oncologists with whom I have talked in recent weeks have said that is not the case.

Dr. Schink, Laurel’s doctor says it is just too weird that we both have had cancer at such early ages. He suspects there is an undetected gene we probably share that contributed to our getting cancer.

My mother, who can control very little in her life these days, is upset that I have not yet had this surgery.

(Kim: I'm jealous that you still have a mother who cares and who tells you what to do. I miss that my parents are gone.)

She scolded me last night. What are you waiting for?

I am waiting for my season to be over. I am waiting to be less busy.

This is not a good reason, I know, when a potential bomb is ticking.

Although of course there are good surgeons in St. Louis, my family wants me to have the surgery in Chicago where they can take care of me and they want me to have it before they move to New York, so the race is on.

Later,

Joan

Mon., March 27, 2006

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