In April 2008 , I was diagnosed with Breast Cancer. My first reaction was tears and fears. Cancer is a nasty word, it is synonymous with all that is evil and out of control, that did not help my attitude any so I decided to refer to my cancer as crap. That I can handle! Thankfully, I was blessed with a wonderful team of medical experts who were instrumental in changing my attitude from one of fear to one of knowledge and empowerment to beat this crap.
I had a lumpectomy, followed by chemotherapy and radiation. The thought of chemotherapy had me scared witless, but you know what? It was not very bad. Chemotherapy has changed from what I remembered my father went through in 1980. Yes, I lost my hair, food tasted like cardboard and I had no energy but I did not get sick once! I want to thank everyone who works in the medical industry to improve the care for cancer patients.
I want to thank each survivor who went before me to give me courage; you are the sisters I always longed for when I was growing up. It surprised me that there were so many because they had been so quiet about their survivorship. Many survivors do not want to make a big deal out of their survival, but we need to be vocal, we need to celebrate life and show just how much breast cancer affects our lives.
Des Moines, IA