Spokane woman fights cancer with a smile on her face - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Spokane woman fights cancer with a smile on her face

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SPOKANE, Wash. -

Tina MacLachlan's office is one of the first things you see at Karen’s House in Spokane. The 44-year-old is busy typing away on her computer, and five o'clock is the last thing on her mind.

“I love it here,” said MacLachlan. “It's my favorite job I've had in my entire life. It's like family here everyone treats each other with respect and love and kindness."

MacLachlan wears many hats at Karen’s House, a long-term home for women recovering from drug and alcohol abuse, and she wouldn’t want to be anywhere else.

“They are just transformed,” said MacLachlan. “It’s such a blessing to be able to see. It’s one of the most joyful things you can witness.”

You wouldn’t know it from the constant ear-to-ear grin on her face, but MacLachlan is going through the biggest challenge in her life.

“I've been diagnosed about four months ago with stage four breast cancer,” said MacLachlan. “And it went into both of my lungs, my chest wall, and my liver and it's one of the worst kinds you can have.

MacLachlan and her husband were devastated by the news. What followed were weekly rounds of chemotherapy and extreme fatigue. But through it all, all MacLachlan can do is smile.

“Tina's amazing,” said Jaymie Fowler, one of MacLachlan’s coworkers. “She's the most positive person I've ever met in my life and it's not for show, she's always positive.”

“I've just noticed in life when something bad happens, if you stay upset about it, it just makes the problem worse,” said MacLachlan. “But if you try to find solutions and just have faith that it's going to work out it usually does.”

MacLachlan isn't simply being overly optimistic; she's speaking from experience.

“The first time I had cancer was when I was 13,” said MacLachlan. “And I had stage four Hodgkin's Disease, cancer of the lymph nodes.”

Doctors gave MacLachlan two weeks to live, but a few years later she was going to things like her senior prom; leaving cancer in the dust.

But its return 30 years later have doctors doing everything they can.

MacLachlan intends to stay at Karen’s House until she retires, which means she'll have to go 2-0 against cancer. And beating it is something no one doubts she'll do.

“I'm sure it's going to be a long battle but I’m up for it,” said MacLachlan. “I think that after it's all done with I believe I'm going to live a long and healthy life.”

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