Good Morning Everyone! I don’t usually post on Sunday but today is a HUGE day for me.
Today, July 1, is my five-year cancerversary.
I’m sure everyone has heard that when you’ve had cancer making it to five years is the goal. Making it to five years with the kind of breast cancer I had is major! For those of you who are somewhat new to my blog, I had Triple Negative breast cancer. What is that you ask? Triple–negative breast cancer (sometimes abbreviated TNBC) refers to any breast cancer that does not express the genes for estrogen receptor (ER), progesterone receptor (PR) and Her2/neu. The majority of breast cancers are hormonal and have one or more of the receptors above. TNBC represents 15-20 percent of all breast cancers, which is not a huge number.
When I was diagnosed five years ago, I had never heard of TNBC. Of course, I went straight to Google and started reading up on what it was. One of the first things that popped up was this…”Five-year survival rates also tend to be lower for triple-negative breast cancer. A 2007 study of more than 50,000 women with all stages of breast cancer found that 77% of women with triple-negative breast cancer survived at least five years, versus 93% of women with other types of breast cancer”. Also, this means that there is a higher risk of death when cancer does recur”. You can imagine how scary reading the statistic was!
The five-year mark is something that I have been waiting on, well, for five years!
I didn’t want time to pass by quickly, but I couldn’t wait to say I was five years out! Does this mean that if you have had TNBC, you are cured forever? I don’t know, because everyone’s path is different. What I choose to believe is that I am healed, and I am never having it again! Cancer is a life changer! We are all touched by it in one way or another. I absolutely hate it, but I am a different person because of it and actually grateful for it.
As bad as the ordeal was, it has given me so much, and I wouldn’t trade any of it. It brought our family together like nothing else, it gave me a platform to hopefully help other women going through it, and it has become a massive opportunity for me through this blog. It also has taught me to believe in God’s word on healing.
A great friend of mine sent me a book called 365 Days of Healing (devotional), and it changed my thoughts on healing. I am a Christian, but one of the devotions gave me an “ah-ha” moment. On the page I read, the author said that if we look at the passage from the Lord’s Prayer where it says “on earth as it is in heaven, ” we should take that to heart. There is NO sickness in heaven. Therefore there should be no sickness on earth. I have clung to that thought!
I don’t know why some people are healed and some are not, only God is in control of that.
One day I will be able to ask him that question. In the meantime on this earth, I hope that I will continue to be used to help other women who are going through breast cancer. I have had women reach out to me through this blog to let me know about their diagnosis. I am serious when I say this, but I have talked with each one and hope that if anyone else is diagnosed, they will contact me. It is my greatest privilege!
Now for my PSA! Please, please, please, get your mammograms! My cancer was found that way and actually didn’t show up as a tumor. It showed up as a calcification that looked funny to the radiologist. Thank God he was persistent! Feel yourselves up and go to the doctor if you feel anything at all. It’s better to check than not. TNBC usually goes along with the BRACA gene, but I believe in my heart, that it is environmental (I was negative for this gene). This type of breast cancer does NOT discriminate in age either. Many younger women in their 20’s and 30’s have been diagnosed with it. Tell your daughter’s to check themselves too!
I have been celebrating all week long! My husband had a party for me this past Wednesday night with family and good friends that had been on this journey with me. I am so grateful for the love and support I had and continue to have. We are celebrating today with my family in Colorado. I am the luckiest girl! It has been a great week but also a very emotional one for me. I pray that there will be a cure very soon! Please know that you can reach out to me if you know someone who needs coaching through a diagnosis. I would love to help!
Thank you for being such sweet supporters of my blog as it means the world to me!
Photos: Danielle Sabol