Happy Saturday everyone and Happy Fourth Cancerversary to me! I know I usually don’t post on the weekend, but my anniversary is today, and I am so happy to have the opportunity to share it with you all! I know I have a lot of new subscribers, so I want to share with you a little bit of my story (if you already know it and don’t want to read, have a great weekend!).
I was diagnosed with breast cancer from a routine mammogram, although the tumor was never seen or felt. The radiologist found some calcifications that looked funny and suggested a biopsy. The biopsy was performed on June 13, 2013, and on July 1, I was having a double mastectomy. I consider this day my cancerversary because this was the day my cancer was removed from my body. I was given the option of having a lumpectomy, but chose the mastectomy and made the right decision, because after the pathology was performed, I learned that I had a very aggressive form of breast cancer called Triple Negative.
It is very important for me to use this blog as a platform to urge and beg you all to make sure that you check yourselves and get your mammograms. I also want to encourage you to speak with your daughter’s, daughter-laws, granddaughters, nieces, or any young women close to you. The kind of cancer I had does not discriminate in age. Actually, I was on the older side to be diagnosed with it. It seems to affect women as young as in their late 20’s. It is a nasty cancer that has very quick proliferation rates. My tumor was small, but it was growing at a rate of 89%.
If I had to tell anyone diagnosed with this horrible disease what to do, I would plead with them to use the most aggressive treatments you can. Most breast cancers are hormonally fed, and after treatment, those women (and men) are given tamoxifen to keep the cells from coming back. Triple Negative is not hormonal and we, that are diagnosed with it, do not get the luxury of taking anything. That is why I say to do everything; surgery, chemo, and if needed, radiation.
I know I have said this before, that I don’t want this to be a “breast cancer” blog. I believe I am healed by the Grace of God, and I feel it is why I am here. I have personally known a friend that passed away from this particular cancer. I read about how awful it is and that if it comes back, it’s usually in the brain or lungs. I have had people refer to it as “the terrible kind,” and others gasp if they know about it. I get to live with these thoughts in the back of my head every day, but that’s where they stay, in the very back!
I know my blog is mostly about fashion, beauty, and things that are light-hearted and fun. It’s not a deep thought provoking blog and, therefore, I sometimes want to call it quits because it’s time-consuming and a lot of work for a bunch of fluff. But…it’s this day and the month of October that keeps me continuing. If I can help one person change the course of their life by getting to a doctor, then this is all worth it!
Today, I celebrate my new “birthday.” God has healed me, and I am so blessed and grateful that I am on number four. I would not change anything about the last four years. Cancer has taught me a lot, and life is so precious. Thank you all for reading this and for supporting me on this blog. Please schedule your mammograms, you have much to live for!
Have a Happy Weekend! xx
Photos: Mary Summers Hafner