Over the past eight months, we have shared the story of a woman from Sharon who is fighting breast cancer, while also expecting her first child.
Adrienne Toth is now nearing the end of her pregnancy and her chemotherapy treatment. She wants the public to know she is doing just fine, but she and her husband, Dean, are not doing it alone.
Adrienne’s Army, a group of Adrienne’s friends and family, organized a hugely successful benefit in February. It was held in a banquet hall that was at capacity with more than 1,000 people.
That kind of overwhelming support is what has helped Adrienne and Dean get through the past several months.
“It doesn’t go unnoticed, and we appreciate everything,” Adrienne said through tears on stage at the benefit.
Treating an expectant mother with an aggressive form of breast cancer is no small task, but Adrienne is now in the last few weeks of both her pregnancy and her chemotherapy.
“This ain’t no normal pregnancy,” she said during a recent chemotherapy treatment. “My arm’s burning really bad. I don’t even want to open it up and look at it, it’ll freak me out. It gets all red and blotchy.”
Dean said the entire ordeal has been tiring and difficult, but he gets to spend a lot of time with Adrienne since she doesn’t work and is always at home. But he knows the ordeal has been much harder on his wife.
“Not being able to take that away is extremely hard for anybody that knows her, especially being with her day to day and loving her as much as I do. I wish I could just take away all that, but I can’t. So, it’s pretty difficult,” Dean said.
But the past eight months also have been something else for Dean.
“It’s been inspiring. I just said to her last night, I think for the first time really, and I should tell her more. But I told her how proud of her I was. It’s just very inspiring to see her go through this and it makes your struggles, whoever you are, just seem a lot less significant. Because what she’s going through is far harder than anything I’ve ever been through or things I’ve complained about and I think to myself I wasted time complaining about that? And it was nothing. And look, do you see a smile on her face? Does the smile ever go away from her face? No,” he said.
Because Adrienne is pregnant, doctors have not been able to perform the usual tests to see if the cancer is anywhere other than her breast. But once she has her baby, that changes.
“Once I deliver, then we would get a PET scan, CT, bone scan, something along those lines. And then that way they would be able to know what’s going on everywhere else because I’ve only been able to have a mammogram and ultrasounds,” Adrienne said.
It is the unknown that scares her now.
“That’s, I think, my biggest fear, that there was such a long waiting period in order for me not to terminate the pregnancy. I waited so long to start chemo that I think it could be other places. I hope it’s not, but we may have to do more chemo or different chemo, but I try not to think about that. But it’s always kind of in the back of my head. I think that will be the scariest part of all, not even being diagnosed but just knowing that it was sitting somewhere else this whole time and I had no idea,” Adrienne said.
Dean shares those same fears.
“That test scares the crap outta me. Just getting those results and I just want to know that she’s clear,” he said.
For now, Adrienne and Dean are patiently waiting for their baby boy to arrive. And Kellan Dean Toth could come any day now.
After Adrienne delivers, she’ll find out how effective her chemotherapy has been, and when she will undergo major surgery to remove both of her breasts.
She has agreed to let our station continue to follow her through those next, challenging steps to beat cancer.