She had found out back in September that she was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer. Not only rare, but unique in that she was supposedly the first documented case with a certain other condition.
This is what she wrote in December of 09 on one of her boards...
You see the far and away the vast majority of those with this cancer are young, non smoking, women of oriental extraction.
I am not young, and though I have always had an extreme affinity for all things Japanese, I don't have a single oriental gene in my body to the best of my knowledge - I'm 5'11", red haired, brown eyes, very fair skinned and caucasian.
But I have Bronchioloalveolar carcinoma (BAC ) - a rare form of non small cell lung cancer, a subset of adenocarcinoma. So like with the Peutz Jegher I get to be a lab rat - though they didn't out and out say so. (But the looks in their eyes and comments like "this may help research find a link " - )
The good thing is that they have a fairly painless chemotherapy for it, that works pretty good they say - and the fact that the side effects are very mild are what has made me willing to give it a try -it's a pill that one takes daily for 30 days at a time. Side effects are relatively mild. You get a red rash on you face - acne ( at my age! ) and might have a very minor bit of nausea and loose bowls ( but which reponds easily to Immodium )
I get a base line CT and chest Xray on the 22nd, start the pills on the 23rd.
The one huge drawback - and it makes me glad that I am on the county's indigent system ( medicare through SSD has not kicked in yet ) - one 30 day supply costs close to 5,000 dollars - yeah 5 K ( shudders )
Then we see if it worked - but the survival prognosis ( the standard 5 year thing ) is over all not very good. Surgery would have been the best option - that has an incredible 5 and then 10 year survival rate, but as both lungs are involved with a large number of lesions thats not going to happen.
So while this may slow it down substancially, ( if it works ) it isn't going to be a majic bullet - and I'm cool with that.
I hadn't seen her here on Ex Isle, or anywhere else for about a month so I got curious and checked a board that I had set up for her. That's when I found this, posted by one of her longtime friends dated 1/14/2010.
In typical Shal fashion she wants to apologize for leaving any RPs hanging.
Of course, I was worried about my dear friend, so I e-mailed Shadow for any information as to her condition...where she was staying...anything...and today I was met with the worse news possible...
Most of you know how close Shal and I were back in the hey-day of Slipstream and Ex Isle. That was no put-on. I truly loved her, and will always love her. She holds a special place in my heart, and she always will. That special place merely has new meaning now. She once sent me a stuffed pillow tiger...that I have slept with ever since...and shall continue to sleep with til my dying day.
This is something she was prepared for. She accepted her fate. If you don't believe me, listen to her own words.
Blessed Be, Shalamar Thorskald. You will be sorely missed. The universe will not be the same place without you. May the Goddess be with you in all the empty places you must walk.