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In September 2013, after struggling with homelessness and battling instability, I was determined to keep my new job at all costs. I ignored that nagging, pinching sensation on my right breast and my existing disabilities. I began to push myself emotionally and physically to provide for my teenage daughter...
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My Dog Found My Cancer!
In August, I had a mammogram. In December, my dog kept shoving her nose in my right breast. By January, she was dragging her paw down it. I called my doctor, who scheduled me for another mammogram. He found fifteen masses in my right breast...
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Coverage for Genetic Testing
A woman who has inherited a harmful mutation in BRCA1 or BRCA2 is about five times more likely to develop breast cancer than a woman who does not have such a mutation. Insurance companies should not have the right to decide who gets funded for testing.
Demand Coverage. Sign the Petition.
Although I have not personally experienced losing my hair, I have three remarkable women in my life that have. These three women are all in different stages of their survival. My grandmother -- a four time breast cancer survivor -- lost her hair with chemotherapy in 1991. My mother -- a three time cancer survivor -- last lost her hair with her breast cancer occurrences in 1990 and 2005. My sister -- recently recovering from her breast cancer -- lost her hair just last year. All three of these women took a similar approach to their hair loss, but each had their own mental struggles.
My grandmother is no stranger to breast cancer and the numerous side effects it has on one's body. However, she only had chemotherapy once with her inflammatory breast cancer. Losing her hair was a major event for her which often times left her in tears. My mom offered to cut Grandma's hair since Mom already knew the effects chemotherapy would have. Mom suggested it might make her feel better. It certainly made her feel a little better, but Grandma never really appreciated her beauty while being bald. Any time she left her house, she always had a wig on; she wanted to feel as normal as possible.
My mom experienced chemotherapy twice, each time losing her hair. Losing her hair "was painful," she said. It was painful falling out, both mentally and physically. It tingled. It hurt. Both times. Mom said when her hair fell out in clumps while she was taking a shower she knew it was time to take matters into her own hands. She headed to her aunt's salon for a trim. She often wore wigs, just like Grandma. However, she wore it more for her elementary school students. She really did not want to scare them, or be the reason kids are asking questions at home. No matter how uncomfortable those wigs were or how hot her head became, she stuck to her wig for the students...