Friday, May 31, 2013

My Foundation.

When we were building our house in September 2011 ( before my diagnosis), one of the very first things the builders did, was build our foundation. This included a lot of concrete, sweat, and measurements. I asking Josh when they were going to pour the concrete, because I wanted to write a scripture on our back porch. The date kept being iffy and finally Josh called me one morning and told me they were pouring the foundation. I remember that morning going up to our lot and asking the workers (all who spoke in Spanish, which was a funny conversation in itself) of when it would be ready for me to write on the concrete. I think they were all confused of what I was asking about, but one man understood, and he kept saying, "Come back in an hour." Well, I did this about 10 times and the concrete was too wet each time. I finally was able to write the scripture, as I wrote it in frustration as all the workers were laughing at me. I remember it being a frustrating day, but by golly, I got my verse written on our porch!!! We went back that night to see if the foundation had hardened and to check out my verse. Apparently, the crew that day (that was laughing at me) apparently decided to add some art-work to my verse and made little squiggilies around my verse. I remember crying as I saw what they had done. To Josh, he didn't understand why I was so upset, but it was because I had been by the house at least 10 times that day, with frustration and heat, all to get to the house and see their "artwork" around my verse. I remember later that night feeling silly for getting so upset and God giving me peace just to laugh about it and know it would be a fun story. He reminded me that it was the symbol of that verse and what it said that was important- not the nice "artwork" that the foundation crew added to our family's verse. Here is a picture of our verse on our back porch.

Matthew 7:24-25 says,"Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock."

I am thankful that HE is my foundation. I see client after client whose world crumbles into pieces when tragedy or crisis strikes. We talk a lot about building a foundation that will hold when the rains and winds come. The ONLY firm foundation is Jesus Christ. I would not be standing physically, mentally, spiritually, if He was not my foundation...

When I think of foundations, I of course think of Jesus, my husband, my family, but I want to tell you a little about my friends. When I say that I have the best friends on the face of the earth, that is the biggest understatement. My friends have been the truest of friends throughout my battle. I had the privilege of going to New York City with 2 of my incredible friends, Ainsley and Margot this past week. Margot was my best friend in elementary (in Lafayette) and Ainsley was my best friend in high school (in Monroe) and now they are best friends and live together in Baton Rouge( a really cool God story of how he has knit us all together), but I was able to have the trip of a lifetime with these girls this past week. Here are a few pictures from our amazing trip.

Walking the Brooklyn Bridge

 Excited to get on our first subway of the trip!

In Front of the Plaza Hotel

 Having fun on the Big Piano at FAO Swartz

At Brooklyn's famous Clinton Street Bakery

I had a blast with 2 of my best friends. When this trip idea came up, my typical response is to say no because of time, money, or guilt. I feel so differently now having gone through everything I've been through. I treasure spending quality time with my friends and family and we made sure this trip could happen. My wonderful husband made sure we saved enough for me to go--often times throughout my treatments and thereafter, I wondered if I would be able to have fun on a trip, if guilt or fear would overtake me, if I could feel normal for a while, so to be able to go on a trip like this, far away from my husband, my doctors, my security blankets, is a true miracle. I am so thankful that the Lord allowed me to go on this trip with 2 girls that have helped build my foundation. I am striving to seize the moments that I discussed in the last post, instead of finding reasons to say no. I pray this trip is a catalyst for me to continue to enjoy the life God has given me.

Ecclesiastes 5:18 "Even so, I have noticed one thing, at least, that is good. It is good for people to eat, drink, and enjoy their work under the sun during the short life God has given them, and to accept their lot in life."

When I was first diagnosed, Ains and Marg drove up pretty immediately to be with me. They came to church that Sunday morning with me and were at a prayer gathering right before I left for MDA. When we came to Baton Rouge shortly after my diagnosis to meet with a doctor there, they asked if Josh and I would come to their home because they wanted to talk with us and give me something. This led to several hours at their house where they compiled a book of scriptures for me. They read every scripture out loud, speaking those words over me, and prayed for me and committed to praying me through this journey. I still read these scriptures daily...These 2 girls are 2 of MANY that continue to make my foundation firmer each day. So thankful for those that sharpen me and draw me closer to Christ.

Proverbs 27:17 "Iron sharpens iron, and one man sharpens another."

I am going to add the scripture references that these girls compiled for me, along with others that I received and held to under the "healing scriptures" tab at the top of our blog. One of the questions I get asked often is about how I had so much faith, and it was through believing and speaking these scriptures. Romans 10:17 says that faith comes by HEARING the word, and I took that literally. I read these scriptures outloud daily which increased my faith exponentially. I pray that you will share these healing scriptures with others. God's word is my foundation- for life, for healing, for comfort, for peace...for EVERYTHING.

A little update on me:

Not much has been happening (which is good). My back pain has improved some, which has been encouraging. Still struggling with some back/hip pain, and physical therapy has helped some which is a HUGE answered prayer. It still is a struggle to keep my mind from getting scared, but I truly felt like I have come a long way. I have to remind myself of this...

We have decided to go through with my last reconstructive surgery. This surgery will be the 28th of June and they will do a breast lift on my right breast, remove some skin from my lat flap surgery, a possible release of my left pec muscle, and a possible fat injection to my left breast, where the top of my chest caves in slightly, and try to flatten my drain scars. As I get more details, I will pass on to you, but we have gotten peace over this surgery, which is an answered prayer as well. God is so good to me. We will also head to Houston on the 19th to have a check up with my radiation doctor and surgical oncologist. An Xray and ultrasounds will be done at this time, which can make me nervous, so please be praying for perfect results from these... I love you guys.

***Also, please be listening for me on Monday on 88.7 f.m. radio, as I will be a guest on the "It's a Mom Thing" radio show with Jenny Remsberg and Chrys Howard. If you live out of town or want to listen at work, you can "listen live" on, and click on "listen live" and you can listen to a bit of my story from 9:00-10:00 on June 3rd, Monday morning.***

Thankful for my rock solid foundation, Jesus Christ,


Sunday, May 19, 2013

Please Update Your EMAIL Now


This is not our normal blog post. This post is an update of sorts that is long overdue for our blog audience. Most of you at this point read our blogs when you receive an email. This is hugely convenient and we have more than 700 subscribers at this point. 

However, if you want to continue getting these updates we need you to update your email. Go to or click here.

This blog is assuming that most of you are reading this as an email so here are some things we need for you to know about and then do so that you can continue to see these updates.

1) We updated the layout of our blog to make it more user-friendly. You can see it here.

2) There are over 700 people that receive our blog updates through email. If you want this to continue we need you take a minute and update your email. Click here and you will be taken to the blog where you can update your email. 

3) We now have a facebook page for Aly's Fight. You can see it here

4) We now have a website for Aly's Fight also, you can see it here.

5) Aly and I both are back on Twitter. You can follow Aly at @alytaylorla and then mine is @joshtaylorla.

We thank you so much for all the kind words that we continue to receive from you guys. We understand that we are blessed even in the middle of our ongoing fight. 

Thank you,


Saturday, May 4, 2013



Our life is full of moments. Moments we treasure. Moments we despise. There are even moments we re-live. There are some days that a certain smell will hit me and it will take me back into a moment as if I were experiencing it right then and there. Common moments may be your wedding day, or hearing the news of a lost loved one, a baby being born, or maybe even just affirming words from someone. Well, needless to say, this last year and a half has been full of moments for me. Moments I'll never forget. Some moments I wish I could forget- others I wish I could bask in: Hearing I had breast cancer, our "send off blessing night" that our church had for us as we headed to MDA, waiting during my unnerving ultrasounds, hearing my fertility chances were low, seeing my husband struggle to function, my last chemo, the night before my mastectomy, Dr. Litton giving me my clear pathology, the list goes on and on. The ironic thing is that many of my "moments" haven't been these huge milestones listed above. It would be too complicated and too long to explain, but many of the moments I have experienced along this journey were moments ordained by God that maybe didn't look so huge to others on the outside.

John 15:16
"You didn't choose me. I chose you. I appointed you to go and produce lasting fruit, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask for, using my name."

I had another moment just a couple days ago. We were in Houston for my oncology check-up and my plastic surgery check-up. As I've described before, I feel such a connection with my plastic surgery team. At this point, they have done 4 major surgeries on me and I know I've had to have had over 30 appointments with them through my expansions and check-ups. I sent Dr. Villa a picture collage after my last surgery that was entitled "Thank you for putting me back together." It had several pictures of me and I showed my progression to where he has helped me get. I hadn't talked to him since I sent him this. I also sent my PA some flowers for V-day. These people are so special to me...

Well, when Dr. Villa came in my room on Tuesday, he loved on me and said he cried when he got my package. He of course asked me all of the doctor questions and then took tons of pictures of me- from every angle. There I am standing with my shirt off and he just says "You look beautiful." I know this may sound so simple, but to have a man, that isn't my husband say that is pretty indescribable. It isn't creepy or weird. It it like a dad looking at his daughter, with all her imperfections and being in awe. He is very "father-like" and super kind and compassionate...remind me some of my dad, so I I'm sure that plays into feeling so validated by him. After he took my pictures, I put my shirt on so he could see how I looked in a shirt. He just kept hugging me. I started to cry and once again told them thank you for all they have done for me. There we were all crying in that hospital room, like we have many times before. Then we all walk out of the room with red noses and wet faces as if I received bad news. But no, it's because we love each other and have an unspeakable bond that comes from vulnerability and trust. I don't think I can adequately express this moment. A moment that is forever ingrained in my mind and heart. The power of a moment...

I literally cried for over an hour after my appointment. Josh had left to go on a trip after my oncology appointment, which gave me some good alone time with God. As I was still in MDA, at Whole foods, at homegoods, driving in my car-- I was crying so hard and just soaking in the moment I had with Dr. Villa and Alisha--thanking God for putting these people it my life. It is still hard to put into words or explain...So I just cry.

 This is me waiting for my plastic appointment. We get some fancy robes:)

Another moment came on Monday when we met with Dr. Litton and she said that all of my symptoms don't concern her. This is what I was praying for. She was pleased with how I was doing and the next time I see her will be August 19th. She scheduled all of my scans on the 18th (these are the scans she wants to run before trying for baby) and then I will see her the following day. God answered my prayers by allowing us to schedule these scans and having her unconcerned with everything. She encouraged many things for my back pain, so we will look into those options as well. Another moment--hugging my hubby in the room after Litton leaves, as we do after each visit and thanking God for continuing to show his faithfulness in my body---

 Psalm 89:1
 "I will sing of the Lord's great love forever; with my mouth I will make your faithfulness known through all generations."

After my perfect oncology check-up

During my plastic surgery appointment Tuesday, we talked about what else needed to be done to complete my reconstruction. There are still a few nips and tucks that are needed non-surgically and we discussed those. We also discussed the possibility of another surgery. Because one breast has been radiated and one has not, the radiated one does not drop like a normal breast does, so Dr. Villa suggested possibly doing a lift on my non-radiated side to make it a bit more symmetrical before we do the finishing touches. This possible surgery could also flatten some of my drain scars and take out some skin that bothers me under my armpits (where my lat flap muscle is pulled under). So we are praying about what to do, but I feel peace either way. Please pray for us on this.

So obviously a huge moment for us was when we received my clear pathology last year that the doctors  were doubtful would come to pass. That was on April 30, 2012. That was a HUGE moment. Praise God that my healing has been made evident for 1 whole year! I will never forget Dr. Litton saying that my pathology was perfect...seeing her giddy face...Josh breaking down... and her not really having much else to say. She explained that she normally could go over different things, but because it was clear, she didn't have much else to say. What an incredible day... an incredible moment. It has been one whole year!!! My first doctor, Dr. Morrow (the one who moved in the middle of my treatment to California) posted this comment on my blog after learning of my clear pathology:

"I talked to Dr. Litton today and cried on hearing the wonderful news! God is so good! I thank God with all of my heart for the wonderful results and for putting you and Josh in my life and blessing with me with the opportunity to be your doctor. With great love, PK Morrow" Another incredible moment...

So, my next appointments (not considering if I have another surgery) are scheduled for June 19th, which are check ups with my radiation doctor and surgical oncologist. I will have X-rays and ultrasounds done at these appointments so please already start praying for perfect results from these. Please continue praying for my back pain. I had a back MRI last week and it showed a bulging disk on my L5-S1, so I'm relieved to know what is causing the pain, but it is still tough. Also, now that we have a date for all my scans, be praying for August 18...clear in Jesus' name. I will update soon.

Enjoy the video below that we made right after I received my pathology results, 1 year ago, a week after my mastectomy surgery.

I got to stop by Shreveport on my way home and was able to love on my sweet nephew, Liam

Encouraging you to treasure and notice the moments,