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Share your story today!
The inspirational stories below are just a sampling of the amazing people in your lives who have experienced breast cancer, and we are happy to be able to honor them here. Tell us your story of courage and love, and inspire other survivors and supporters around the world.
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A few weeks ago, I was sitting in the chemo room with my mother-in-law, who is in partial remission from a form of Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. I noticed a man about my age waiting with his wife. My first thought was, “Wow, he’s so young to be in treatment for cancer.” Then it dawned on me...he is about my age.
It was like a slap in the face and an ugly reminder that I am so young at the age of 42 to be in the midst of my battle with breast cancer. The same thing happened to me while looking at the Susan Koman Race website and saw a little boy kissing him survivor mom at the finish line. My initial thought was how sad it was that such a little boy had a mom with breast cancer. Next came the realization that my youngest son was about the same age as that little boy.
Sometimes, I get so caught up in my treatment and every day life that the stark reality of having cancer can sneak up on me from out of nowhere. I’m incredibly adept at handling a crisis so maybe this is a form of crisis mode. I’m also very dedicated to enjoying every moment of life, which would be impossible if I focus on the dark side of cancer diagnosis every day.
I choose to focus on the positive and find the rainbows through this storm of breast cancer. Sometimes, the storm gets worse before it gets better...maybe that’s what happened to me that day in the chemo room. It’s okay to have dark days in our journey. It’s important to experience those feelings and then move past them.
I have Stage III breast cancer at a young age with young kids and a whole lifetime of living left to enjoy. There are times when I still cannot believe that I have cancer, but I refuse to let that fact get me down. I had to put breast cancer back in its place today...I hope you can do the same!
Beverly McKee, The Breast Cancer Warrior
I was diagnosed exactly a year ago at the age of 36 while I was 6 weeks pregnant with my 3rd child. Was advised to do abortion and continue with lumpectomy, radiation, chemo.... I was shocked when I heard that even more then I found out I have cancer. Refused that and instead at 8th week of pregnancy I did skin and nipple sparing mastectomy with I and II level of lymph nodes removed, also done primary breast reconstruction but I'm not satisfied with the result so I'm preparing myself for another reconstruction this autumn or winter. The tumor was 1.2 cm, 1st stage, ER+, and lymph nodes were clear. At the Christmas evening gave birth to my beautiful baby girl that gives me strength all this time together with my husband and my 2 sons. Today when I look back I think I would never forgive myself if I've done abortion cause I wanted a daughter so much. If I didn't got pregnant I wouldn't probably find out that I have breast cancer yet cause I did ultrasound of my breasts because my mother told me to do it when I made the appointment to the gyn. to confirm my pregnancy. Gave my baby girl name "Vita" (meaning Life, or shortest from the name Victoria (victory), I think she deserved to carry it because she saved my life.
3 months ago I began to fight with mild lymphedema and I really have to be careful with the food I'm consuming.
God bless you all who are fighting this battle, support to all the woman and your family!!!
At my annual in 2011, my GYN thought she felt something in my left breast. I had a baseline mammogram & ultrasound in 6/2011. My left was fine, but microcalcifacations were on my right- mammograms every 6 months (12/11 & 12/12)-no changes.
9/12 I had right wrist surgery & my hand was in a splint. Columbus Day weekend, trying to sleep, my left hand was across my chest. That’s when I felt the lump in my right breast. My boyfriend asked what would happen next. I told him I would call my GYN & after seeing her, I'd go for a mammogram& ultrasound followed by a biopsy& then I would be referred to a specialist. I’m not sure how I knew, with no close family history, but I knew.
I was home when my doctor called with the biopsy results. “It tested positive for cancer.” I will never forget those words.
My boyfriend wrapped his arms around me as I was crying that day. I tried to push him away from staying with me. I couldn’t walk away from cancer, but he could. He told me he wasn’t going anywhere& he wasn’t going to walk away from his best friend. He has been with me every step of the way since.
I ended up testing BRCA-2 positive and on 1/10/13 had a bilateral mastectomy with expanders. 1 lymph-node tested positive & all on my right were taken. I had 3 tumors on my right breast & was stage IIB. 8 rounds of AC/T chemo finished this week and I soon start 6 weeks of radiation, then Tamoxifin.
Each step has been a new journey and I’ve learned to take one thing at a time. The fatigue can be overwhelming. Seeing relationships and friendships in my life change was hard to accept. I’ve re-established some old friendships and lost newer ones. I’m still adjusting to my new normal and trying to figure out who I am after hearing that big bad C word.
Now I’m focusing on the next steps, but I know I will be okay!
One day my shitzu cosmo.. was jumping in my lap and licking my chest. I pushed him away, even though he always has been loveable, it was strange. He continued to it.. Then he started rubbing his nose against my left breast.. It hurt when he did this, so I pushed him away again, thinking he hurt me. Then he started to growl and bark at my chest.. it was very strange.. when I laid down, I felt a burning sensation throughout my left breast.. I called the dr. He sent me for a mammo, ultrasound, mri, and biopsy. I was then diagnosed with dcis. I was devastated, yet thankful that it was caught this early. When I told my little girl, who is now turning 7, she made a giant poster, and brought it to school for everyone to sign!.. I just had my surgery, and had 2 lymphnodes removed as well.both cancer free. I am preparing my self for my new journey, and will begin radiation in a few weeks.. This has changed my outlook, on lots of things, but I assure you, that everyday, I get stronger, and this is what will help me survive... family and friends.. and my hero.. cosmo !
When I was 40, my doctor gave me my first referral for my mammogram. I kept it in my purse for about two weeks before throwing it way. I did that for the next four years, using the excuses that I was fit, healthy, breast cancer didn't run in my family, I never "felt" anything and that I didn't have time in my busy schedule for the test.
When I turned 45 I was given a new doctor who asked me why I have never had a mammogram. I gave him my list of excuses. He said, "You have been on hormone replacement therapy for 15 years (I had a hysterectomy at 30), do you KNOW the risks? You WILL go and get a mammogram or you will get a new doctor because I will not continue to treat you unless you do." I was annoyed, but I went. I was stunned to be diagnosed with DCIS. I realized that doctor saved my life because I without that ultimatum, I would NEVER have gotten a mammogram.
Since my diagnosis, my family and I have been catapulted to the alternate universe called Cancer. It becomes a life of fear, tests, needles, questions, tears, and prayers. I am having a Lumpectomy with Sentinel Node at the end of May. I am lucky, I will be fine, but please don't be like me. Don't skip your mammograms. It's not worth the risk. Thank you for reading my story. God bless you.
My story is simple. I went for my annual mammogram and the moment no one wants to hear from my radiologist, to whom I've seen for many years and trusted, is "I see something suspicious". He later showed me the xray and I immediately went to a breast surgeon who did a needle biopsy and found this suspicion to be DCIS encapsulated calcification, to finding an oncologist to one week later my first lumpectomy followed by a second for cleaner margins. Seven weeks of radiation followed and I was soldiering through this experience like a tooth extraction, you just do it. Once treatment was completed did I find time to reflect and begin to see my life through a different lens, my psychotherapy practice was very fulfilling, finding my voice through my cabaret performances, spending delicious time with my granddaughters, appreciating my then 42 year marriage, soon to celebrate our 50th and spending time with my 97 year old father. I appreciate every day and life after diagnosis can be one to celebrate.
It was 2 months after my wedding & this lump in my right breast had been bothering me, not physically, but just knowing it was there didnt feel right! It felt like a muscle that had grown & as I'd been working out a lot before my wedding for fabulous wedding dress arms, i thought nothing of it.
After a couple of months i went to the doctors who straight away referred me to a breast specialist & after a week of intense biopsy's, mammograms, MRI scans i was diagnosed with DCIS of the right breast. DCIS is very early stages of breast cancer, pre cancerous cells just waiting to turn.. & the only treatment needed would be a double skin saving mastectomy & reconstruction + removal of lymph node in right arm pit to check no cancer cells had spread. Surgery was to take place January 4th, 2months after first diagnosis.
After completion of surgery & everything tested negative, no further treatment was needed & after weeks of recovery, am now in good health. My next part of the reconstruction takes place in a couple of weeks June 1st - this consists of nipple reconstruction & fat transfer.
The past few months have been a very emotional traumatic time, but i feel so lucky and thankful i check my boobs regularly & caught it at the very early stages.
I have written a blog to raise awareness to other young woman, preventative treatment is the best form of survival! You can google me firstname.lastname@example.org
I'm right here, standing beside you--holding you up as the tiredness of your last chemotherapy treatment is taking over. Now is the time to lie down and rest, and My Angels will be watching over you. Rest is healing. I am right beside you.
I'm right here, behind you--giving you gentle pushes forward since you are not feeling as strong in yourself today.
I'm right here, in front of you--leading the way over this rough cancer road for you, helping to make it a little more bearable.
I'm right here, inside you--as difficult as your journey is for you, you can still reach out and help others. I will help you to accomplish more than you thought possible.
I'm right here. I am your boss. I am your father. I love you like no other can.
And in the fall of 2010, while I was in treatment for breast cancer, He was right there in answer to my prayer--I wanted to help other women as they, too, traveled their own unique cancer journeys.
He is here when I ask Him to help me author special letters and testimonials.
He is right here, answering prayers that I have not even though to say yet.
He is right here, meeting every need I have in order to administer The Sparkle Caps Project, as we uplift, empower, love and pray for other women through sponsored Sparkle Caps gift bags.
He is right here, helping me to tell other women that, in spite of our hair loss, we are HOT CHICKS.
WHERE ARE YOU? I am in you! And I am in you! And I am in you! I know your pain. I know your fears. Trust in Me and trust the plan that I have for you!
I was a 44 year old single mom, with sole custody of a wonderful son, just laid off from the space center when I went to my oncologist expecting to hear I had breast cancer, just like every woman on my side of the family. My mom was a survivor, I knew I would be too. Imagine my surprise when I was told I had been misdiagnosed by several years and my cancer was already in my blood and bones and my PET had lit up the machine. I had an immediate transfusion, radiation on my back and hip where huge clusters of cancer cells were, and began radiation. Ive been thru 4 kinds of chemo, including in office and pills. Ive taken Xgevia every single month and was getting Aranesp shots weekly. More recently we found cancer cells in the backs of my eyes and an MRI after that radiation revealed 3 lesions in my brain, so we started radiation over my whole brain just after Christmas 2012. This time my hair is not growing back. My son is now almost 15 and is a big help to me. He is in ROTC and Civil Air Patrol and plans to go into the Air Force. I am now 47 and making arrangements for my son to live with my brother if I get worse. Im back to transfusions every 4-5 weeks and doing chemo for the rest of my life. I am not giving up and as hard as it gets, I keep pushing on. I have to for my son. My friends say they think I am so strong, but I dont see it that way. I believe God still has a plan for me and Im not finished yet. I have a lot of people praying for me and I truly believe those prayers are what keeps me going. Im praying for all my sisters fighting the good fight out there too.
After I found a strange lump in my breast sticking out and clearly visible (did it grow up overnight?), I knew this is not good. I lived in the US back then, but I decided to fly back home to Europe to have it checked out. The doctor did biopsy, but it came back negative. For some unclear reason I didn't believe it and insisted on removing it even though it meant to reschedule my return flight and calming my angry husband who thought I am crazy.The pre-surgery pathology came back negative again. I slowly slipped into believing that I must be indeed crazy. On top of that, they removed a big chunk of my breast. When I came back to have my stitches removed, I was told the very rare and very aggressive CCC diagnosis.No one saw it before in that (big) hospital. We got second, third opinion; finally the Czech,the US and the Swiss doctors united on the diagnosis and treatment. I got very strong chemo and 7 weeks of radiation which I finished few months ago. I never ever wore a wig because I wanted to raise awareness (especially here in Europe) that young people can get cancer too. It took a lot of courage, and I decided I need to do even more. Because I am psychologist, I am especially interested in the emotions and in the treatment aftermath. I am still not out of the woods, but I am trying to make the best out of life I can. I created Cancership site to share my experience which is a big step for me because I am rather shy and private person, but if something changed during the treatment, then it was the need of talk out and bring more awareness to this. I am planning on working with oncology patients as well.I wish I could say I will be cancer free forever now, but I know it is long distance run. I am just waiting for my genetic results to come back.I call the picture PRE, DURING, AND AFTER :)