My Breast Cancer Survivor Story
Today marks a very special day for me my dear friends. I am now over 7 years free of breast cancer. Back in 2011, I was diagnosed with Stage II Breast cancer at the age of 28. If you haven’t imagined already it was a very tough thing for me to hear at that age.
I considered myself a pretty healthy female. I was active in the military, I worked out often. I was a pushup fanatic. So how is it that I all of a sudden was diagnosed with such a dis-ease of my body. My mother never had breast cancer or my grandmother, but yet somehow it came into my life.
Getting Checked for Breast Cancer
Many people always ask “Well how did you find out?”. A few years before being diagnosed with breast cancer, I was having a issue with one of my breast starting to become much larger than the other. I was pretty young at the time so I wasn’t too much aware of self checks to determine if I felt a lump or not. Plus I was in awesome shape, so I never thought anything of it.
My bestie recommended that I go to the doctor to check out my breast, because what I explained to her was not normal. I went on base to see a military doctor and because of my age, the doctor recommended I stop drinking Mt. Dew (at the time I was drinking Mt. Dew like it was water).
The doctor stated that since I was young there was no issue and as long as I limited my intake of caffeine, I will be just fine.
A few more years past and the base ended up shutting down, so we were all referred out to civilian doctors. I was still having issues like pain in the larger breast and it was recommended I attend the doctor again to see whats happening.
My civilian doctor was very nice. I explained to him what was happening and he mentioned that it was strange because of my age. But he said that if I was his daughter, sister, mother, etc. he would want to run all test to be on the safe side. So he ordered a mammogram, then a ultrasound and finally a biopsy. It was once the results came back from the biopsy, that my doctor called me in.
Being Diagnosed With Breast Cancer
I was away at military training, so I wasn’t able to come in right away. I wasn’t in a hurry anyway, because I am not expecting anything to be wrong with me. Once I returned back home, I scheduled an appointment with my doctor. My best friend asked if I wanted her to come with me, I said “No, I am just getting a follow up”.
Once I arrived in the doctor office, I remember the doctor coming in teary eyed, to tell me I have breast cancer. After she told me that everything else coming out of her mouth sounded like charlie browns teacher when she talked. I couldn’t hear or comprehend nothing she was saying. The rest of that visit is a blur.
I returned back to the office and asked my three closest friends to come in, so I could tell them the news. When I told them, they thought I was kidding because I didn’t sound serious. In my mind I still haven’t really took in what happened so I was still keeping my emotions together. Once they realized, I was serious the tears started flowing from everyone but me. It still wasn’t real in my mind.
Immediately later, appointments were scheduled to get treatment going.
My oncologist recommended that I get a double mastectomy, chemotherapy and radiation to shrink and remove the tumor. I started my first round of chemotherapy in May 2011. I must say it was not a pleasant experience at all. If I knew what I know now about the various herbs, veggies, and tonics I could have taken instead of placing poison into my body, I wouldn’t have as many side effects as I do now.
I ended up not taking my last 2 rounds of chemotherapy because it was getting too rough on my system. I was placed in the hospital because I became very ill and my white blood count dropped extremely low. My finger nails were coming off and my skin was peeling all over. To be honest, I think if I would have taken those last two rounds, I might not be here today to share my story.
After I finished chemotherapy, it was time for my surgery. I was doing a double mastectomy with reconstruction so more pain would come down the road for me. Little did I know, that it would be the reconstruction that would cause my so much pain over the next few months.
With the reconstruction process, my plastic surgeon had to install tissue expanders. This was so that the skin on my breast could stretch to the new size I wanted my breast to be (of course I wanted some decent size new ones to replace my smaller old ones lol).
It was so painful because my original skin had to be stretched quit a bit. I could barely stand up straight for weeks because of the pain. Next after some months it was time for radiation. The issue I had with the radiation was the discolor it caused in the radiation treated area.
After radiation, it was time to get my new implants in. This was a great moment for me because it was my last surgery and it meant the final step in this difficult process. I must say I had a very excellent plastic surgeon and he did a awesome job on my reconstruction.
I beat Cancer’s Butt!
Now 7 years later, I am cancer free! I couldn’t have done it with my strong support system from my friends and family. As with anything in life, it is always to have a strong support system you can count on. After being diagnosed with breast cancer and going through treatments, my entire prospective on life has changed. I tend to enjoy life more life and cherish the most simplest things I come in contact with.
It’s amazing how wonderful a breeze feels, how beautiful the trees look when changing colors for the season, how green the grass is in the summer, how nature smells, the beauty of hearing children laugh and play…I can go on and on about how the smallest things that places a smile on my face.
As I end this post, I want you to always remember “Life is what you make it. Sometimes those things you think are serious problems, are not as big as they seem. Think to yourself, there is always someone who wish they could have the eyes you are seeing with, have the ears you are hearing with, have the legs you can stand with, have the arms,fingers, wrist, and even life that you are complaining about. Start being more grateful for what you have now before time runs out”
Well I hope you enjoyed this read friends. Thank you for taking to read my survivor story!
Have a Awesome and Prosperous Week!
Thanks for Reading!