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Get checked! Life is so precious.

You can be a victim of cancer, or a survivor of cancer. It’s a mindset,” says well-known author, Dave Pelzer, and I decided to use this advice and take the positive path of a survivor. On February 13, 2014 I was diagnosed with aggressive, invasive stage 2 breast cancer, and even though my mother died of cancer in 2009, I intend to rise above the odds and stoically fight this disease.

Although physically struggling these last few months - weight loss, fatigue, achiness, and hair loss due to the chemotherapy treatments - I continue to maintain an optimistic attitude during this long, arduous road to recovery. Doctors claim that if chemotherapy is ineffective, radiation is necessary after the double mastectomy. My double mastectomy is scheduled for August 25th. I will not know if the tumor is dead until a few days after the mastectomy and I am positive that radiation will not be needed....or at least I hope not. If I receive the all clear then and my DIEP flap reconstruction is scheduled for October 6th.

In my heart I know that I will conquer this disease, move forward, and lead a long, healthy, and active life!

I implore all women, even those under forty, to give themselves monthly breast exams. It can save your life!

***I am 37 years old, this does NOT run in my family and was not initally found on my annual exam. I found it myself. Please be aware of your bodies ladies.

Orlando, FL

Chrissy Nieman's story 10/4/13

I found a lump the size of a pea in my left breast and felt a searing pain up to my armpit when sleeping. Had a needle biopsy but couldn't draw any fluid, was told it was a fibroid cyst but if it was causing me pain I could do a lumpectomy. 2 days later I received a phone call and was told I had cancer. After a dbl mastectomy I discovered that it had made it to 9 of my lymph nodes. I then had 22 weeks of chemo, 28 treatments of radiation and a complete hysterectomy. I will undergo my first reconstructive surgery In December. I thank God I am able to fight it, and am thankful for everyday with my kids and husband. Cancer has made me stronger.

Chrissy nian
Hagerstown, MD

Mellisa Battle

It was March 19,2014 I had a breast biopsy and was waiting on the surgeon to come in as he came in the room he put his hand on my shoulder and said well it was what we feared cancer. I remember feeling like I was in some nightmare then I started crying feeling as though I'm going to die this way! They ran some more testing and I decided on s lumpectomy so surgery was May 13 when I awoke my family told me the cancer had went into my lymph nodes and I'd need chemotherapy so again another nightmare I decided to participate in a group study to possibly eliminate needing the chemo unfortunately the team decided I did in fact need chemo so I was told six rounds of chemo 33 rounds of radiation to follow. I started chemo June 19 the side affects were terrible and continue to be I'm going into my third round this week. I have an awesome support team my 15 year old son my mama and my Aunty and Uncle they have been amazing. Unfortunately I've missed a ton of work lost a lot of money so the stress has added to what I'm already enduring. I've decided I'm done being a victim of this all I will keep fighting as I promised my son I'd finish chemo and I know in my heart I will win this battle I know God has some amazing things waiting for me to conquer this sickness. I pray for any who suffer with cancer and pray that God be with you all and pull u to that finish line. God bless you all..

mellisa parmann
marysville, MI

Go, Fight, Win!!

My journey started with a sneeze at work. That day, September 27, 2103, that sneeze broke my left humerus. The doctor demanded X-Ray after X-Ray and I didn't understand why but he saw a spot near the break that he was determined to investigate. They kept me in the hospital for 7 days in the Oncology Unit which totally baffled me Finally, an Oncologist came in and explained that the spot they saw near the break was consistent with malignant lesions they see on bones. They transferred me to another hospital to see a specialist who could do a bone biopsy safely. On October 10 at my follow up visit, the Orthopedic Oncologist told me I had breast cancer and I needed to see an Oncologist within the next 48 hours prior to him putting a rod and pins in my arm. I was told I have metastatic breast cancer but the prognosis would be better if it only affected the bones. Immediately, I did what I would do in any situation, my husband and I prayed and we have not stopped. I prayed to be made whole. God started with my back. I had back pain for a year prior to my diagnosis, which turned out to be a collapsed vertebrae due to lesions. The radiologist noticed the vertebrae and sent me to a neurosurgeon. I had back surgery in December and I was discharged in 3 days because I was walking without pain. The next phase was radiation. Only 5 sessions. Praise God! The final phase....Chemo! It was game on! I went every week since 1/22/14. The only real side effects I experienced from chemo were loss of taste for a couple of days and hair loss. As of June 9, I won! There is no evidence of disease and on 7/30 I complete my last chemo. This journey has been a roller coaster ride but I am being made whole physically, mentally, and spiritually. God has been guiding us every step of the way and it is only by his grace I can stand here smiling. Winning!

Darria Grandberry
Somerset, NJ


In 2001' at age of 51, went for check up and mammogram. Doctor couldn't feel any lumps in my best. Got mammogram thinking everything okay. Got card needed to have another mammogram. I had a cluster close to the breast bone. It couldn't be felt not did it shows up in an ultrasound. As a result, it was caught early and removed it. The mammogram saved my life and i didn't have to have chemo or radiation. Since then I've had melanoma, precancerous colon and am not fighting pancreatic cancer. Been on chemo treatments for almost three years. It has spread but i am still surviving.

Christine Seeley
Jacksonville, NC

You Can Make It

September 12th, 2014 would make 5 years since my mom has passed away from breast cancer and now my aunt is battling the same thing. My entire family on my mother's side took the gene testing to see if we have the genes and we are awaiting our results. Two years ago my step son who is only 9 experienced the same thing with his mother, so now I am a full time mom. I am glad that I can be there for him. As a child of a breast cancer victim I felt so robbed and hurt and I can only imagine how my step son feels at this time. I just want to encourage everyone on this site to don't give up. You can make it. Keep fighting and keep pushing and don't give up. I've seen some people who were able to go into remission. Today I would like to share with you my song 100 meters. This whole process felt like 1500 meters instead of 100 and I must say thank you to God for being with me through this journey. Know that you can make it. Please be encouraged.

Veola Stewart
Nassau, Bahamas

Why not me..

I was in a accident in early August 2011. I flipped my car, my seatbelt came unlatched and I landed on my right side on the middle console. I walked away without a scratch.

By the end of August I felt a very sharp pain on my right side at my breast area. I was thinking it must be because of that wreck. I schedule an appt with my doctor and she found a spot on my breast and sent me for a ultrasound.

I went to my appt and they found something and had me go ahead an have a mammogram. At the age of 33 I was having my first mammogram. CLEARLY the spot was noticeable.

They made me an appt with another doctor that specializes in that sort of thing and he said with my age and my history of no one having breast cancer it's 99.9% will be benign. So I op to get it removed for testing in mid sept of 2011.

Surgery went smooth I went to the beach at the end of sept. They was suppose to let me know the results and they never called I never went to my follow up cause everything was fine. Or so I thought, in December of 2011 the spot was back and felt even bigger. I had a appt in Jan 2012 and I went to the same doctor to tell them it was back only for them to tell me I had Cancer. It was triple negative breast cancer if that wasn't bad enough I tested positive for the BRCA 1 gene. Which meant I had to do the highest dose of chemo and followed by 6 weeks radiation. They said that the hormones was the fuel to any breast cancer so I had both breast removed and a complete hysteromy all within 2 years.

Now it is July of 2014 I am cancer free with just having reconstruction surgery. People ask me did you ever ask yourself Why you? I responded Why not me...

God works in mysterious ways!!

Ansted, WV

My Battle With Breast Cancer

In September of 1989 my husband discovered a small lump in my left breast. I was only 36, but decided to have a mammogram . I had a sonogram, a needle biopsy, and then the lump biopsied. My doctor called back that afternoon, and said I had Mucinous Carcinoma.

I had a Modified Radical Mastectomy and all of my lymph nodes removed. Because I was 36 and my cancer was hormone receptive, I had to have 6 months of chemotherapy. I had Adriamycin, Cytoxin, and Methotrexate. I didn't lose my hair, but I had never been so sick in my life. I made it through, though and knew I was going to be fine.

In August 2013. I noticed a burning sensation deep in my right breast. I went to my primary care physician and he set me up with a mammogram and a sonogram. They noticed something right away and set me up to have a biopsy. My doctor called about 4 days after my biopsy to tell me I had Advanced Lobular Carcinoma. It was too widespread for a lumpectomy, so I had another mastectomy and sentinel node biopsy. This time there was lymph node involvement, so I would have chemotherapy first, and then radiation.

I started chemo in October 2013 and finished in February 2014. I had to have a port put in because my veins were all shot by my third treatment. It's much easier with a port. After about 6 weeks to recuperate, I had 5 weeks of radiation. I thought it was going to be easier than chemo until I finished with second degree burns. I finished radiation in May.

I had a CT SCAN on my chest and abdomen, and they came back clear. So far, so good.

I am blessed with a family that loves me and some very special friends who have been there with me every step of the way. If it comes back again, we will fight again. I have a strong faith in God, and I believe in the healing power of love and laughter.

Penny Alexander
Ocklawaha,, FL

Rainbows In My Mind - My special Breast Cancer Song

"Rainbows In My Mind" is a song which I wrote following my cancer journey in 2006:

When the rain clouds gathered round

Made me run for safer ground

Panicked when it could not be found - I’m hiding.

Paint a rainbow in my mind

Thought ahead and I did find

All at once the storm clouds were subsiding

And I want all the world to know

That my future’s lookin’ bright

When problems come along

I won’t give up without a fight

And when others don’t play fair

I’ll turn my back and I’ll play right

I won’t despair, I’ll paint the rainbows in my mind.

Wonder why they came around

All those things that knocked me down

Overwhelming, wish the gods had laid off!

Wandering through that great unknown

Now its passed, how I have grown

Never knew til then what I was made off

And I want all the world to know

That I’m glad I got through this

Each day that I’m alive

Is a day that I won’t miss

And the troubles that I’ve had

In my life, have been a gift

For they’ve made me paint the rainbows in my mind

Admire all those who stood by me

Raised me up and set me free

When all I wanted to do was give up trying.

How I want to be like them

Grow from love and start again

Fix my wings and off I go, I’m flying!

And I want all the world to know

That I am strong and I am fine

All my friends to know that I’ll be there anytime

Through the sorrow of their rain to the joy of their sunshine

For they helped me paint the rainbows in my mind

Louise Barron
Inverness, United Kingdom

living proof

Im glad to introduce my wife naomi(survivor) with our daughter, Aniyah, celebrating her first birthday. In 2009, my wife was met with a challenge. Stage 3, aggressing 4 breast cancer. Needless to say, she beet that junk! Gave birth to my first and most precious baby girl. Doctors said there could be no chance in conceiving, none the less delivering a full term healthy beautiful child. Living proof miracles do happen. Today we have been met again with another challenge, that junk is back... Only this time it came with a shut off notice. So much pain, so much hope, so much confusion and exhaustion. Please pray if you do, cause i cant do this much longer. Believe and hope for a cure for this crap. ¿?¿ Good day to you and your loved ones

lompoc, CA
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