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Jaime ' s story

My name is Jaime Cech and Iam a stage four survivor. I was diagnosed at age 34 with triple positive her2 aggressive breast cancer. By the time of my original diagnosis my cancer had spread to my lymph nodes and stomach and I was in for the fight of my life. My oncologist got together and pre paired our plan of attack. 12 rounds of chemo a double mastectomy and 30 radiation treatments to follow and a life that will be forever changed. I never anticipated CANCER or planned in advance that this would consume my life. A single mother of two girls and cancer wow! I started chemo immediately losing my hair and a feeling of self. I didn't recognize the face in the mirror anymore and the more poison(chemo) they pumped in me the weaker I felt. After 12 rounds of chemo I went into cardiac arrest. I was burned from the inside out because of a broken port. Shortly there after I had a double mastectomy and lymph removal. My tumor was donated for research to help future bc patients. I received 30 rounds of radiation to rid my chest wall of the cancer that remained and I continued with preventative treatment until my heart wasn't strong enough anymore. Through the storm I pushed and pushed to find that inner me again, the person Breast Cancer tried to consume. I realize through all the trials to never give up on life or yourself because anything is possible. Two years ago I was given 10% chance to live and today I'm stronger then ever and two years clean, cancer free and still the mother of two beautiful daughters who see me as a hero a fighter and a breast cancer survivor.

Jaime L Cech
EL MIRAGE, AZ

My Journey

I was diagnosed with invasive ductal carcinoma June 2014. After being told that something was found in my mammogram. I was sent for a biopsy which confirmed what was suspected. I was overwhelmed by all the information but went for a second opinion in NYC, the same diagnosis was given. However, I began to do some research and being that my cancer is estrogen driven I made the decision of doing a bilateral mastectomy. It was done on September 8,2014. I am recuperating very well and awaiting to start chemotherapy in 2 weeks. I know I have a long journey ahead but I am glad it was found in time. It turns out I had a stage 2 cancer. At this time I have expanders on with drains but the pain is gone. All I feel is a soreness. My surgeons did an outstanding job. I Thank God everyday because I know he is by my side, along with my husband & loved ones.

Leticia Bolorin
Mahopac, NY

The C word.

My unwilling journey. A journey with no end . The cancer can be removed from the body but never from the mind . People are wanting an uplifting story, with a happy ending,sorry can not help you . The best advice I can share with anyone is, do your monthly exam, the life you save is yours!

jeanne
phoenix, AZ

Survivor!!

I am a Breast Cancer Survivor and I'm am Blessed more then you may know!!! Being diagnosed at such a young age is mind blowing. It's and emotional rollercoaster. Breast Cancer is really a life changing experience. And till this day I still can't believe that I HAD Breast Cancer. My two children kept me strong. They kept me positive. They kept me going. Without those two I don't know what or where I would be. Their love through it all warmed my heart. I still cry sometimes just thinking about it but then I smile because I'm still here and grateful as ever!! I had a life changing experience and I can honestly say through it all I kept a positive attitude. But that's all you can do when your going through something like that. Having Breast Cancer made me a stronger woman, a better mother and a warrior. I kicked Breast Cancer's Butt at the age of 25 and I would do it ALL over again if I had too!!! Always remember... God Gives His Toughest Battles To His Strongest Soliders!!!!

Kim James
Col, OH

My Cancer is Beautiful

I’m a 6 year Breast Cancer Survivor.I had given birth to my first and only Child in March of 08,but she died at birth and three months later I was diagnosed with HER2 POSITIVE STAGE II-III Breast Cancer. I’ve had sixteen bouts of Chemotherapy along with ten surgeries that range from implanting a port to removing Lymph Nodes-Mastectomy and reconstruction. I was given six to eight months to live if my Chemo had not worked.I can no longer have children because the chemo messed up my Uterus so bad that it caused me to have a hysterectomy among other things, But wait..no one told me that I would not be able to taste food or that my hair would fall out with my first treatment while walking through Wal-Mart or that I would lose my sex drive and almost stop feeling like a woman.I have had my nails turn black and some to fall off and even a few of my teeth to rot and fall out,the list goes on.I know that we all have a story so I started a facebook page called My Cancer is Beautiful https://www.facebook.com/chestless4me and a blog www.cheastless.com My goal is to be totally transparent and to give you some deeper insight as to what to expect when having Breast Cancer,and what you and your family may have to face based on my personal experience.I want the world to see that the disease itself may be ugly but the woman that carry it are amazingly beautiful.Now I understand that we all are different,but what unites us is this terrible decease.You’re not alone on this journey and it’s ok to be happy,sad,mad and even confused about what’s going on with your body,your mind and your spirit.

I was taught that in order to get a blessing,you need to be a blessing,so let me be a blessing to you!

p.s.I Love you in advance and there’s nothing you can do about it!

Love your new friend Tina and this is my story:)

Tina
Newnan, GA

Life saving bear hug

A year ago last April, my husband and I vacationed with close friends. Upon leaving one friend gave me a bear hug and my only response was "Ouch!" When we returned home, I did a self exam including lifting my arms in the mirror. To my surprise there were two creases in my right breast I had never seen before. I scheduled a visit with my gynecologist referring to a possible lump as the tissue seemed denser than the other breast. He immediately sent me for a mammogram which showed suspicious looking tissue, nothing specific.

Seeral biopsies later, further tests, it was determined that I had I had invasive interductal cancer stage 2.

On july 3, 2013 I elected to have a double mastectomy with reconstruction performed at the same time.

My port became infected and had to be removed. The expander on the elective side became infected, and of course removed.

I underwent several rounds of chemo and 15 weeks of radiation. To my dismay the tissue on the cancer breast began to die so that expander also had to be removed.

I am at a crossroad about reconstruction. All the expanded tissue is still there and could easily be reconstructed. The opposite site, however, I have only the option of a latissimus dorsi flap. I am putting off making this decision until I hear back from some women who have had this procedure and are happy with the results.

I feel extremely fortunate to have had that hug. I had an extremely aggressive cancer and had it not hurt I would have waited until August for my routine exam. My oncologist told my husband and I it may have been too late. Whoever said cancer doesn't hurt was wrong!!

Diane Almy
Delta, CO

mammogram

my doctor scheduled a mammogram, they found a small spot,don't think it is anything serious but would like to do a needle biopsy, after that it was a lump removed. thwy wanted to do 30 radiation treatments or a mastectomy, I chose the mastectomy, had it done yesterday. I am a 66 year old widow and elected not to have reconstruction.surgery.

mary beaudoin
Sault Ste. Marie, MI

Lucky

Not sure I "fit" in with all these other amazing survivors, but here is my story. 11/2012 mammogram found 2 spots the imaging people want to watch, go back 6 months later, 5/2013 and no change. Come 11/2013 and there is another "spot", time for a biopsy which on 12/5/13 is told to me is DCIS, stage "0" breast cancer. "Not really breast cancer because it is confined within the milk duct, but a lumpectomy is in order". 12/27/13 another biopsy to check the 2 spots that were originally being "watched", one turns out to be the same DCIS. Nuclear grade 2.5-3.0. 1/8/14 lumpectomy to remove both areas of DCIS, tumor 5 cm at widest spot, but clear margins, and no lymph nodes affected.

That should have been the end of surgery and on to radiation, but somehow a blister developed on my breast after the 2nd biopsy which proceeded to become "gangenous necrosis", so in order to get to radiation quicker, on 1/31/14 I had a reconstruction/reduction surgery to take care of the dead area and give the left breast symmetry to the right. 3/17/14 34 rounds of radiation start. Some irritation, but all in all, no real problems. Radiation ends 5/1/14 and Tamoxifen starts the end of May. So far, so good. Some increased hot flashes/night sweats and uncontrollable crying at times, but, I remind myself how lucky I am that it was "only" DCIS and "not really cancer". I watched a fellow fighter's hair grow in while going to radiation, I know how lucky I am!! So I still have my radiation "tan" and some inconvenient side affects, I'm here and healthy.

For all those fighting the good fight, God Bless and keep fighting like a girl! I lost one very good friend to this disease, another on Tamoxifen. I can't handle any more losses! Get those mammies grammed, catch it early, no matter what age you are!!

Carole Wilson
Port Orchard, WA

35 years ago...

This is not my story. This is my grand-mother story, 35 years ago. She never told us that she was having health problems... not to her children, grand-children not even to her husband...

It was a secret, it was a shame for her. She was a strong woman, 65 years old and never was sick before. She was raised on a farm, helped her mother to raise her 17 sisters and brothers, worked physically hard for years. And then we was sick.... a breast cancer.

She never told anyone, left one morning and went to the hospital, had a mastectomy and called her husband at the end of his working day to tell him that she was at the hospital.

She was ashamed, was never really comfortable with her own body, being a women from the mid-Century... But wait Ladies, even with the lack of knowledge about breast cancer at this time, she survived for more than 30 years. She died at 92 years old.

So keep you chin up and your hopes high it is possible to make it!!

Michelle Dore
Forest Hills, NY

My Journey with Breast Cancer at 25!

It was January 2014 and I had just finished celebrating my 25th birthday!! I was filled with so many plans but never did I think I had to plan for this life changing journey that laid ahead.. So it started two weeks after my party where I received the news I had cancer. Hearing those words was a jaw dropper.I am only 25. No family history of Breast Cancer. Though in shock something came upon me. I was not angry, fearful, or depressed. Never asked "Why Me". My initial response was what did I have to do next. In my heart I knew I was going to be ok. I put my trust in God that he was going to heal me from this cancer.

So after more testing I got diagnosed with stage 2b breast cancer; IDC; triple negative. My cancer cells were doubling at a high rate so I had to go through Chemo right away. Before i started my treatments I shaved my head because I didn't want to go through the emotional aspect of seeing it fall. I went thru 6 rounds of chemo (TAC) from February 20th to June.5th. On July 17th I underwent a double mastectomy and am currently going thru reconstruction.

It was a difficult journey to go thru but with all the prayer and support I did it. My mom was my right hand thru it all and I thank God for her. My family was strong for me so I knew I had to be strong for them.No matter how tuff it was l wasn't gonna let it take my smile. I smile for my family and the fact that I knew there was a purpose in me having gone thru this. I can now help those going through this disease. Provide comfort for those who need it, show hope for those who are feeling hopeless, give support for those that may not feel supported. I pray I can do this by going back to provide "comfort baskets" for those back at my facility or even volunteering at a children's hospital.

Mireya Medrano
Ontario, CA
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