"The most important thing in my life is being a mom," Katherine Hale proudly admits. That's why when Katherine's local doctor diagnosed her with uterine cancer and told her nothing more could be done, she told him "I have three kids. I'm not giving up."
Choosing MD Anderson
It was because of her husband, Paul, and children Heston, Lauren and Pamela that Katherine chose to fight cancer. Now she just had to choose where. "My brother-in-law. He suggested MD Anderson. He's a doctor," Katherine says. She immediately went online and began reading MD Anderson's survivor stories. The decision was made. "They have successfully been helping people fight cancer for years, so why wouldn't I go there?" she asks. "If you have a foot problem, you don't go to a dentist."
Treatment from MD Anderson
From the moment she checked into MD Anderson, Katherine's team of doctors worked together to develop a treatment customized for her.
Diane Bodurka, Katherine's gynecologic oncologist, knew that Katherine's uterine cancer had spread to her ovaries. Dr. Bodurka says, "Our concern was that radiation only would not be adequate." Therefore, Dr. Bodurka worked with a team of doctors to design a custom treatment plan for Katherine. "Katherine really had a will to live," she says. "We gave her chemotherapy with the radiation to make sure every bit of the cancer was gone."
Katherine's radiation oncologist also spoke with her daily about how the treatments were affecting her. "We knew each other on a first-name basis," Katherine says. "The facility, the support, the volunteers – everything was just awesome. I don't think I would've had an experienced team of doctors and scientists like that anywhere else," she says. "MD Anderson has been known for making cancer history. Well, seven years ago, they made my cancer history."
When asked what she's been up to since her remission, Katherine mentions the three acres she and her husband now have in the country. But, of course, the conversation immediately turns to her kids. "Both my daughters are married. My son – he recently graduated from college and is building his first home. Oh, and I also have a new granddaughter," she says.
"Raising three wonderful children is my one greatest accomplishment in life," Katherine says, "and surviving cancer is my second."