JO ANN MIRABELLI, NAPERVILLE SURVIVOR WITH A TWIST OF FATE Stage 4 Metastatic Breast Cancer with Bone Metastasis – AGAIN! What the heck? Some people never get it once; but, Jo Ann is on the receiving end of some sick twist of fate bringing her from being your typical suburban PTA sports mom, chairing countless committees at Prairie Elementary, Washington Junior High, and Naperville North High School, to heavily depending on her husband and friends so she could focus on surgeries, chemo, radiation treatments, and oral meds - not once, but now twice in her lifetime…..but she will prevail!
The journey that began in 2011 and was pushed into remission for nearly 6 years is back with a vengeance. It wasn’t enough that remission didn’t return life back to how it was pre-boarding the cancer train, but now the train is roaring down the tracks again.
“During remission, I struggled with fatigue, migraines, dizziness and vertigo, strength and mobility issues, anxiety and some post-traumatic stress. I also developed new allergies and was in chemically induced menopause, which in itself comes with its own side effects,” Jo Ann shares. “People often think you went through treatment and now you are in remission, and can go back to your old self; unfortunately, for me it was not that way.” Her husband and her kids, now 23, 20, and 14, are her rock and always look at the glass as half full. Jo Ann gains strength from them and forges ahead. She keeps her emotions in check by keeping it real via www./joannmirabelli.blogspot.com/ and continuing to work out and eat clean.
“I talk about it all – the good, the bad, and the ugly. I let people see the raw and vulnerable side to my life,” she says. “We have to be honest first to ourselves and with that you can make remarkable changes in your life.” -Kristen Kucharski