Breast Cancer Survivor Stories

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Breast cancer is the most common cancer among the women. Diagnosis and treatment of the disease is physically and psychologically painful. But there are people who have foughht the disease and emerged victorious. Here, we share the motivating and inspiring stories of breast cancer fighters and survivors, how they fought their battle with this dreadful disease and now living extraordinary lives. This might give you the dose of motivation that you may be seeking to uplift yourself and fight the demon with full force.

Table of Contents

Stage 1 Her 2 Positive Breast Cancer Patient Shares Her Journey

breast cancer patient Favourite quote

“ICanCerVive!”

SALWANA MOHD DADIRI was diagnosed with Breast Cancer in October 2017. She is fighting her disease. She is mother of 6 lovely children.

The Diagnosis

“I was diagnosed with Breast Cancer in October 2017. I had persistent itch on my right breast nipple.”

The Journey

breast cancer patient's journey  “Hi there… My name is Salwana Mohd Dadiri, better known as Anna or Salwa among friends and relatives. I am 51 years old and residing in Johor Bahru, down south of Malaysia. I am blessed with 6 children, all girls. I have been a full time housewife after having my 4th child in 1995. I am a breast cancer patient. I was first diagnosed with cancer back in August 2017. I went through a series of check-ups which included biopsy, mammogram and ultrasound in September 2017. Results from the checkups indicated that I had a lump on my right breast after which the Specialist recommended that I go through lumpectomy surgery to remove the lump in October 2017.

Result from the lumpectomy surgery in November 2017 confirmed cancerous cells after which the Specialist suggested that I need to go for mastectomy to remove the whole infected right breast together with 19 lymph nodes which was subsequently done in December 2017. After the surgery, I was referred to the Oncologist in February 2018 who had diagnosed that I had Stage 1 Grade 1 cancer with Her-2 positive. Even though it was Stage 1, but my Her-2 positive with Ki67 proliferative index reading reached 70%. In view of the diagnosis, the Oncologist subsequently suggested that I need to go through chemotherapy with the following medications: Doxatexel- 6 cycles, Carboplatin- 6 cycles, Herceptin- 17 cycles The chemotherapy cycle was once every 3 weeks. Unfortunately the local General Hospital is unable to supply the Herceptin medication. I was advised to personally purchase the Herceptin from the registered pharmacy. Currently I still undergoing treatment. I have completed 6 cycles of Doxatexel and Carboplatin Chemo and 11 cycles of Herceptin.”

Motivation to fight cancer

“My family is my motivation. I have 6 kids and I want to live longer to watch my grandkids growing.”

Biggest hindrance

“Financial. I have to buy my own targeted chemo medication which cost RM7300 for every 3 weeks once. I have to complete 17 cycles as prescribed.”

Message to other cancer patients

message for cancer patients “NEVER GIVE UP!”

Breast Cancer Survivor Shares Her Journey

breast cancer survivor story Favourite quote

Stay in the fight to win.”

Keishawn K was diagnosed with breast cancer in February, 2017. She has successfully defeated her disease. She is now motivating others to fight their battle with cancer.

The Diagnosis

“I found a lump in my right breast in the middle of the night in feb 2017. I was diagnosed on 9/6/2017 two days after my Father passed.”

The Journey

breast cancer survivor's journey “During my journey I was able to find my confidence I never had. Losing my hair didn’t impact me at all but losing my breast made me realize I would never have that bonding experience with a child when I have one. What was meant to break me, Blessed me and I knew I had to fight with everything in me.”

Motivation to fight cancer

“After losing both parents, a sister, and an Aunt to cancer I had to fight for my family. I didn’t want them to lose me by the terrible disease. So even on The days I couldn’t get up, I was still fighting mentally. Pushed through and knew the next day will be better.”

Biggest hindrance

“The biggest hindrances was not being able to hang out with family or friends too often due to my WBC count being low.”

Message to other cancer patients

message for cancer patients “To Stay in the fight and WIN. Remain positive and know it can to build you and not break you. Surround yourself with people who are going to love on you and lift you up.”

DCIS and Paget’s Disease of Breast Survivor Now A Speaker And Talk Show Host

breast cancer survivor

“Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strengths. When you go through hardships and decide not to surrender, that is strength” -Mahatma Gandhi “The journey you are on is purposeful; easy or difficult. It’s a journey created for you by God so don’t fight it, simply trust in His will” -Natalie Wilson

Natalie Wilson was diagnosed with Ductal Carcinoma in Situ in breast in July 2008. She has successfully defeated her disease. She is Creator of “High Heal Diaries”.

The Diagnosis

“I was diagnosed with Ductal Carcinoma In Situ in breast in July 2008. Then in June 2016 I was diagnosed with Nipple Cancer, aka Paget’s disease of the nipple. Then only a month later, in July 2016, I was diagnosed again with two lumps of Ductal Carcinoma in Situ. To date I have had 19 surgeries. My first cancer diagnosis came only after I insisted the lump be removed. Initially, I had a mammogram and an ultrasound which both came back saying that it was blocked milk ducts from breast-feeding. Upon my persistence, my family doctor referred me to a breast surgeon who then removed the lump to find that it was cancerous. The other two diagnoses were found by my current breast surgeon during or after reconstructive surgeries. I had brought concerns to her attention, such as a lump or irritated looking nipple. She removed and did pathology on it. This is how the other cases were diagnosed.”

The Journey

Breast Cancer Survivor Now A Speaker
“My Story: Strength, Courage, and a Little Bit of Lipstick Throughout my nine year journey, I’ve learned that I wasn’t born with such qualities as strength, courage, perseverance, and resilience. I was put on this path in order for these qualities to be learned, and ultimately relied upon in order to get to the place I am at today. Most importantly, I was meant to share my story with others to educate, inform, encourage and inspire those dealing with breast or any other cancer. My story began just about five months after my son was born on September 11, 2007. Nursing the greedy little guy on what seemed to be one breast most of the time (the left side was his favourite) posed to be too much for me. With two other children needing my attention, Christmas fast approaching, work still needing my expertise, recovering from my third caesarean, and a husband and house to look after; I was at my wits end. I decided to pack in the nursing after four months. I figured my son had enough of the good stuff to give him the healthy start he needed. In February of 2008, I was lathering up in the shower and came across an unusual lump in my right breast. I could literally grasp it under my skin and slightly move it from side to side. I didn’t think much of it but perhaps it being a clogged milk duct still trying to drain. I made an appointment with my family doctor who sent me for an ultrasound and mammogram. They both came back inconclusive, but perhaps a calcification of a milk duct from my nursing days. Something told me it was more, and I got a referral to see a reconstructive surgeon who specialized in patients with cancer. So this doctor did her check up and said let’s wait and see if it changes in the next six months. Six months later we just decided to remove the lump. I went back two weeks later to get the stitches removed and then I received the dreaded news. I had Ductal Carcinoma In Situ (DCIS). It’s considered a “pre-cancer” of the breast’s milk ducts that can turn into cancer if not treated as such. She also found a spot of invasive breast cancer that was high grade and aggressive growing. I wanted it out immediately. My heart sank, I cried and the doctor was sad for me as she too didn’t expect these results. I mean, there’s no family history of breast cancer and I was a very healthy young woman. Why did this happen and how? An MRI showed more spots in the surrounding marginal area of where the lump was removed and the recommendations were to remove more tissue and go through radiation or do a nipple sparing mastectomy and remove most of my breast tissue, then go on this mediation called Tamoxifen for five years which lowers the rate of cancer coming back. Of course I chose the most radical route of the two as I didn’t want to ever deal with this again. I chose to remove both my breasts and do the reconstruction. I had so much longer to live, and my three babies to watch grow up. I didn’t want to worry about this horrible disease the rest of my life. Within the next one and a half years I had ten surgeries to try to reconstruct my breast. I had many complications from excessive scar tissue build up, multiple hematomas (a collection of blood outside the blood vessels causing blood to leak out into surrounding tissue causing swelling and pain), excessive loss of blood causing me to need two blood transfusions, and thinning out of my chest (pectoral) muscles making it hard to hold the implants, just to name a few. I persevered and made it through all of these surgeries with the help and support and all my family and friends. It was emotionally taxing on my family and me, but I learnt that I was stronger than I thought and that God was on my side. After all, the reconstruction part was just cosmetic; albeit a very important part of my healing process. I knew that seeing myself in the mirror with my clothes off and still resembling a woman that way was half the battle with my recovery. I ignored those who at times made me feel like I was being vain by reconstructing my breasts and putting in implants. I jumped head first into projects that helped me to heal and give back as I now felt and understood what some women were dealing with. I volunteered with the Look Good Feel Better chapter in Scarborough. It was comforting and rewarding as we helped other women dealing with cancer learn simple skin care, makeup application and wig care so that they can look good on the outside. I firmly believe that if you look good on the outside, you feel better on the inside. And this too was helping me. I also assisted my nine year old daughter, at her urging, to make pink beaded bracelets to sell and donate all the proceeds to the Breast Cancer Research of the Rouge Valley Health System. She donated $1085.00. Eventually years had passed and my doctor was at odds with what to do next. After years of research, she decided to refer me to a doctor at St. Michael’s teaching hospital in Toronto who did a certain procedure using human cadaver tissue called Alloderm, and my own body fat to create more normal looking/feeling breasts. The new surgical saga started in 2013. All was going well, and I was so looking forward to closing this chapter of my life. For months before my third and last surgery with this doctor (thirteenth altogether), I had noticed my right nipple looking very irritated; as if I had been nursing. It was sore, cracked and bleeding. I brought it to her attention and sure enough, when she did a biopsy, it came back as Paget’s disease which is cancer of the nipple. This was the same breast that had the DCIS in 2008. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. I was now going to lose my nipple? So another surgery was soon booked, and my nipple and areola were removed. Now I was “nipple-less” on one side but I still had my reconstructed breasts, which I have to say were looking pretty good. Oh well I thought! It could be worse. Complications ensued. I formed a hematoma again, and my previous incisions had started to burst open due to the pressure the implant caused. I now had less skin to stretch out over the implant as a good amount was removed with the nipple and areola. My skin was ultimately thinned out and pressure ulcers were bursting open literally causing holes in my breast skin. I was not healing well and was in a lot of pain. I had an emergency surgery to remove the implant, fix the open wounds, and put a smaller spacer in until I healed. At that time the doctor decided to remove some more tissue to test just as a precautionary measure. At the follow up appointment, she sat down to talk about my pathology: the DCIS I had in 2008 had resurfaced in two more spots in my breast. The same right breast! I was devastated. All I could think of how did this come back? I thought that because I had chosen to go so radical and do the mastectomies, I would never have to worry about this dreaded disease again. I was second guessing my choices and wondered if I had chosen to just take out more tissue and do radiation back in 2008 then maybe this would never have come back. Second guessing wasn’t helping me though, and I had to regroup and take the next step toward getting of this cancer. I had to get through this. One thing I learned that that all women should know is that a mastectomy never removes 100% of your breast tissue; therefore there is always a small chance of reoccurrence. My sixteenth surgery was booked to remove the implant altogether, and remove more of my breast to check for further cancer. I was on my way back to square one. Everything was removed, fat and implant. I was now left with no breast. The chances were slim that I’d ever get an implant back in. I was upset of course, but once again, how could I complain. Women lose their lives on a regular basis from this disease so I was grateful to even be here to have these multiple surgeries. Three weeks later the pathology report came back negative. There was no more DCIS or invasive cancer found and I would not need radiation. I finally was hearing good news after all the bad news I head. I was thankful that everyone’s prayers had worked. At the moment, I am undergoing reconstruction all over again, using my latissimus dorsi muscle from my back to reconstruct a breast. I am on surgery number 19 and have two more to go to complete the process. I have been learning to live with one breast over the last two years, and the prosthetic has been good to me, but realize that I would be more content with a fully reconstructed breast. It’s hard to see myself in the mirror at times, but I’ve learned to just ignore it. Having my breasts are no doubt a physical reflection of my womanhood, but it’s not a reflection of my core being as a woman. I’ve learned a lot more this time around. I’ve re-evaluated everything in my life, again, such as my relationships, my goals, my stressors, my spirituality, my health. I am still beautiful, inside and out. It’s been a physical and emotional journey, and I am still recovering, and all the while I’ve done it with the help of God, my family, friends, inner strength, courage, and…… A little bit of lipstick. Natalie Therese Wilson”
 
Motivation to fight cancer
 
“My main motivation to fight cancer was the fact that I have a husband and three children to be here for. I wanted to show my children that you never give up and you fight to the very end. I also wanted to show them that no matter what hurdles you come across in life you have the willpower to get through it. Also, not that I ever compared my situation to anybody else’s because what I have gone through is relative to me and what I know, however I do see what is going on in the world and that people are dying from this horrible disease and living very difficult lives, so therefore I am fortunate to be healthy and have life.”
 
Biggest hindrance
 
“My biggest hindrances in my journey were the fact that some people look at reconstructive surgery as a type of vanity and that I’m putting myself through undue stress and pain with all the surgeries. But they are not in my shoes and they have not had any of their female body parts mutilated. They don’t see what I see when I remove my clothes. I have long since come to terms with my scarred breasts…my half of breast….my one nipple, and having to put on a prosthetic daily. I know people mean well, but sometimes they say things they don’t realize, or even the lack of comment for that matter. If I wasn’t a strong person I would let them get to me, but I have grown past that, as I know my reasons for reconstructing. And that’s all that matters!”
 
Message to other cancer patients
 
breast cancer in situ survivor story

“My message to other cancer patients, breast or other, is to be well with the journey God has put them on. Once you are content with your life‘s journey, be it easy or difficult, you will get to the end of that journey and be at a better place to help yourself and others. No matter how hard your days may be, the pain will not last forever. I am a firm believer that God only gives you as much as you can handle. I urge people that are going through treatment or recovery, to get involved with other patients that are going through the same thing so that they know that they are not alone. I also believe in giving back, as so many people have given their time and to me. Currently I have a cause where I help women that are going through breast cancer treatment and that are suffering a slight financial hardship, by offering them financial support with utilities, medical expenses, transportation to treatment, children’s activities, or just simply a day at the spa to take their mind off of what they were dealing with even just for a day.”

DCIS Breast Cancer Survivor Who Underwent Bilateral Mastectomy

breast cancer survivor

“You are not Your Scars.” – Malisa Morris

Malisa Morris was diagnosed with breast cancer in August 2015. She has successfully defeated her disease. She is helping and motivating others. She is the founder of “Embracing our scars”

The Diagnosis

“I was diagnosed in August 2015 during a routine mammogram.”

The Journey

Breast Cancer Survivor Motivates Other fighters
“I was diagnosed with DCIS in my left breast. I opted to have a double mastectomy after a second MRI revealed that there was another spot. They wanted to send me from another biopsy but I opted out and told them I wanted both breasts removed. This journey was hard. I was the first one in my family to be diagnosed, so I was shocked, but thank God for my family, friends, and church family. On October 19th, 2015 I had the double mastectomy which was successful, but then after a few hours I died in my hospital bed but was revived. To this day the doctors do not know why my heart stopped beating. Having a double mastectomy and dying changed my life forever. After the surgery I didn’t feel beautiful anymore I felt like I was less than a woman, but one day God spoke to me and told me that I was still beautiful and I was to who I was before cancer came and after that, I begin to embrace my scars. I started an organization called ‘Embracing Our Scars’ which is a non-profit organization that helps other women like myself to embrace their scars and lives their lives on and with purpose. I have had breast reconstruction and nipple reconstruction which I am very satisfied with. This has been a process but I have learned to trust the process and lean on God to get me through and He did just that.”
 
Motivation to fight cancer
 
“My motivation was my children but especially my grandchildren. I wanted to see them grow up, get married, graduate high school, college, and have some babies.”
 
Biggest hindrance
 
“The biggest hindrance was financed. Not having the money to get some of the necessary things that I needed after this surgery. I developed lymphedema and didn’t have the money to buy the products.”
 
Message to other cancer patients
Breast Cancer Survivor's message to other fighters
“To all my pink sisters out there don’t let your scars define you. You are not your scars. Your scars are only a reminder that you survived what was trying to kill you. Don’t give up, you are a warrior.”

DCIS Breast Cancer Survivor, Underwent Double Mastectomy, Now A Fitness Enthusiast

breast cancer survivor fitness enthusiast

“Give your morning to God and he will give you the day.” –Carmel Murphy

Cindy Minter was diagnosed with breast cancer in January 2014. She has successfully defeated her disease. She is a fitness enthusiast and a Hot Yoga student.

The Diagnosis

“I was diagnosed in January of 2014 and I discovered it during a mammogram.”

The Journey

breast cancer survivor
“I was diagnosed with Breast Cancer in 2014, two months prior my stepson passed from suicide. To say the least, my spirit was crushed and the sudden circumstances and uncertainties changed my life forever. I remained strong most of the time for the sake of my family meanwhile internalizing my own grief with the help of prescription drugs to numb the pain. Grieving made me question everything including my spiritual faith. After my bilateral mastectomy and reconstruction surgeries, I suffered from intense anxiety and depression. I was angry and I felt cheated and robbed of my femininity and not that I wasn’t grateful to be alive. I knew to remove my breast was going to get rid of my cancer but living without my breast I couldn’t register. I was concerned about how my husband was going to cope and survive with two deceased sons, an emotional teenage daughter and a wife with potential recurring cancer. He is a brave man and my rock and certainly had his hands full. I constantly struggled with whether he would find me attractive without breasts and nipples and whether I would love myself without them. The perception of myself and body image changed and I continually battled with negative inner chatter. Two years of grief therapy, physical therapy, and couple therapy I began mentally adjusting to my new body and I began learning skills how to live and cope without my loving stepson. But it wasn’t until practicing YOGA consistently that I truly began my physical, spiritual and healing journey. I discovered yoga to be the most beneficial therapy and it introduced me to a life of self-care. Yoga makes me feel complete and not separated from myself and it allows me to heal emotional trauma. The movements heal my wounds each time I practice and it changes my negative thoughts into positive thinking, it strengthens me entirely. It improved my health during recovery when I could barely raise my arms to my head and most importantly it improved my desire to heal depression and anxiety. Vinyasa gives me more confidence to share my feelings and not internalize them. Yoga changed my life spiritually, emotionally and physically and it heals me in ways other forms of exercise cannot. When I flow in Vinyasa I feel free from the emotional pain of my past it teaches me to live in the present.”
 
Motivation to fight cancer
 
“I have diagnosed with DCIS an early stage of breast cancer. I was terrified. I had both breasts removed and went through 3 surgeries. I didn’t go through chemotherapy and I refused radiation. I was prescribed cancer prevention medication that made me sick for years. First I have prescribed Letrozole and I was on it for three years. 8 months ago the oncologist changes my medication to Exemestane. I am 4 years cancer free. I fight every day by self-care and exercise. My motivation is my family and especially our daughter. I fight every day to prevent recurrence through yoga and many other forms of exercise.”
 
Biggest hindrance
 
“The mastectomy changed how I felt about my body. Coping with the scars, pain, weight loss, hair loss and thinning, sexual side effects, changes in sensation, or lymphedema, scar tissue issues, it took a toll on me emotionally and physically. My sexuality changed, mobility in my arms, my femininity robbed, hormonal changes, the scars on my chest. Everything changed.”
 
Message to other cancer patients
breast cancer survivor's message to other patients
“Fight and never give up on yourself. Things may appear bleak and dark of the unknown at first but there is always a reason to keep fighting. Stay informed and do what is right for you, most of all listen to your body. Journaling helped me get through dark times and there is always hope.”

Triple Positive Breast Cancer Survivor Now A Fashion Blogger

Breast Cancer Survivor Fashion Blogger

“Close your eyes and imagine the best version of you possible. That’s who you really are, let go of any part of you that doesn’t believe it” –C. Assad

Rach DiMare was diagnosed with breast cancer in January 2016. She is now NED. She is a Fashion Blogger, Beauty counter Consultant & a Cancer Aid Ambassador.

The Diagnosis

“I was diagnosed in January 2016. I noticed something was wrong during my honeymoon. I’ve always had a lump in my right breast but it was always declared as nothing since I have no family history of breast cancer. However, I noticed that my lump felt larger than usual. I wasn’t sure if it was always that size or if it grew. I was perplexed because, to be honest, I rarely gave myself a breast exam. I went to see my doctor after my honeymoon and she immediately noticed the size of the lump. She mentioned that it would most likely be fibroadenoma since most women my age start to develop it (I was 27 at that time). But she wanted to be sure and schedule a breast ultrasound. The breast ultrasound led to a mammogram, which eventually led to a biopsy. A couple of days after my biopsy, the pathology report confirmed that I had 4 malignant tumors in my right breast. It also confirmed that I had triple positive, invasive ductal carcinoma”

The Journey

journey of breast cancer survivor

“After hearing my doctor confirm that I had cancer, they also mentioned to me that since I am newly married (we were only 6 months into our marriage at this point), they wanted to warn me that all the cancer treatments may harm my future family planning and that I may want to consider fertility preservation. I was hesitant at first because hormones were one of the receptors that were feeding my cancer and going through the fertility perseveration process meant adding more hormones to my body.

Fortunately, my oncologist was supportive of whatever decision I made and she reassured me that she was prepared to handle whatever may come up. I didn’t want cancer to ruin my future, so I went ahead with fertility preservation. It wasn’t pleasant but at least we were able to freeze 8 embryos. Soon after, I did 6 rounds of neoadjuvant chemotherapy and Zoladex shots every 3 months. Chemo was definitely tough on me mentally and physically. The side effects were awful, constant low energy and I noticed I changed physically. After 6 rounds of chemotherapy, I had a double mastectomy with immediate reconstruction. After surgery, I got started on aromatase inhibitors and completed 17 rounds of Herceptin. After Herceptin, my medical team decided that I should be on Zometa. So every 6 months I go in to get Zometa infusions. Zometa every 6 months, Zoladex shots every 3 months, and aromatase inhibitors daily is my current treatment plan.”

Motivation to fight cancer

“I had a lot of motivations to fight. First was my life. Being diagnosed at the age of 27, I knew there was still so much I had yet to see and experience in this world. I wanted to continue this path of marriage with my husband and build a life and family together. I also wanted to be there for my family.”

Biggest hindrance

“There were a lot of challenges. One is accepting the fact that I have cancer and knowing that cancer is a life-threatening disease. At the same time, I have to manage my side effects. Some days they were so awful. It was also hard to accept the changes it had caused me mentally and physically. I felt as if my body was stripped away from me and I didn’t recognize who I was anymore. And the one that I didn’t expect at all was how challenging life would be after chemo. No one ever warns you about the difficulties of cancer survivorship. I can’t relate to anyone, and no one seems to understand what I was/am going through; all of this while still having the fear of recurrence in the back of my head. I can no longer treat any symptom that my body is experiencing as same. Everything always seems to relate back to cancer.”

Message to other cancer patients

message to other cancer patients

“That life will always throw challenges at you, but we can always rise above it and make the most out of it. Even though the darkest and most tragic times, there is always a silver lining. I hate the fact that I was diagnosed with cancer, but through it all, there were many blessings and I would have never encountered these blessings if it weren’t for cancer.”

Her 2 Positive Breast Cancer Survivor Now Autism Consultant And Marathon Runner

Breast Cancer Survivor Now Autism Consultant And Marathon Runner

“If you must look back, do so forgivingly. If you must look forward, do so prayerfully. However, the wisest thing you can do is be present in the present” –Maya Angelou

Jill Pring was diagnosed with breast cancer in January 2016. She has successfully defeated her disease. She is a fitness enthusiast, a marathon runner, and an autism consultant.
 
The Diagnosis
 
“I was diagnosed in January of 2016…about a month after my 39th birthday. I went in for what was supposed to be a baseline mammogram (my first mammogram ever) and ended up leaving with a series of follow up appointments and procedures.”
 
The Journey
journey of breast cancer
“I can’t say I was overly surprised by the diagnosis…just sad. I have a very strong family history of cancer (all different types of cancer) and used to joke about “which one” I was going to get. I had a bilateral mastectomy, 6 rounds of chemotherapy and a year of Herceptin. I work in the public school system and was able to work throughout my treatment (with some restrictions) which I really think helped me maintain a routine and positive attitude throughout treatment. My co-workers were so supportive which also helped me get through treatment. What I wasn’t prepared for was the life AFTER cancer. The fear of recurrence and survivor’s guilt hit me super hard. At first, I kept these feelings to myself…not telling anyone what I was going through. Finally, it was just getting too hard and my everyday life was getting harder and harder to get through. I started seeing a therapist through my cancer center which was huge for me! She suggested starting a low dose antidepressant which I reluctantly did. It has made a world of difference and has really helped therapy work for me. I also started working out after finishing chemotherapy which has not only helped with my physical health but my mental health as well. I hired a personal trainer and started running. I’m so much healthier than I was before cancer. I’ve even run half and full marathons…something I never ever thought I would be able to do…like ever! I’m happy to say that I am in a great place right now and life after cancer, while a struggle sometimes, is pretty darn good!”
 
Motivation to fight cancer
 
“I feel that my cancer journey has helped me find my purpose. It’s my purpose that kept me motivated and keeps me motivated.”
 
Biggest hindrance
 
“I was definitely a hindrance. I’ve always been a private person and quite stubborn. I thought I was being strong and tough by going through cancer by myself. I went to chemo infusions by myself, went to all my appointments by myself. I didn’t accept much help from others…not even my husband. He and my friends/family have been amazingly patient through all of this.”
 
Message to other cancer patients
message to other cancer patients

“My message to other cancer patients is to build up and use your support system. Don’t be afraid to ask for help…during and after treatment. You will come out of this experience a different person…embrace and accept the new you!! Find your purpose and put everything you have into fulfilling it!

Her 2 Positive Breast Cancer Survivor Underwent Double Mastectomy

breast cancer survivor

“Keep putting one foot in front of the other. That’s all you need to do right now” – said by my radiologist the day I was diagnosed.

Jen was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2016. She has now successfully defeated her disease. She also shared her journey in her blog – “Cancer. Life. Jen”
 
The Diagnosis
 
“I was taking a shower, I lifted my arms up and began a self-examination. I noticed a tiny marble like a lump in the lower/middle section of my left breast. It was soft, pliable and seemed to move when I touched it. There were no other noticeable signs at the time. After an ultrasound, several mammograms and two needle biopsies (one of the lumps, one of a nearby lymph node) I was diagnosed with breast cancer.”
 
The Journey
jouney of breast cancer
“I underwent 6 rounds of TCHP neoadjuvant chemotherapy. Followed by a bilateral nipple-sparing mastectomy and implant reconstruction. In May of 2017, I was officially in remission!” A little insight of her treatment as per her blog: I underwent fertility treatments for 2 weeks followed by egg retrieval. I have ten eggs currently frozen and stored. I then went through 6 rounds of Taxol, Carboplatin, Herceptin and Perjeta treatments. Afterward, I continued Perjeta and Herceptin for an additional 5 treatments and then simply Herceptin for a total of 18 treatments. I completed Herceptin in December 2017. I am on hormonal blockers which began with Lupron and Letrozole. After severe joint pain, I was switched to Arimidex and Lupron and the joint pain subsided. However, given the harsh side effects of forced menopause, my oncologist has switched to Tamoxifen which I will start soon (and no longer take the other medicines). I had a bilateral nipple-sparing mastectomy in May 2017, followed by implant reconstruction in Sept 2017. I have a 560cc Natrelle high profile, round, silicone implants. I had a pathological complete response to treatment and was declared No Evidence of Disease in May 2017. My surgeon doesn’t use the “cancer free” words until her patients hit the 5-year mark.”
 
Motivation to fight cancer
 
“I wanted to live a long life with my friends and family. As much as I possibly could.”
 
The biggest hindrance
 
“Feeling unwell and isolated. I was surrounded by so many people but sometimes I felt the most alone and sad about what was happening.”
 
Message to other fighters
message to other cancer patients
“Move forward. Go to every appointment, mark every milestone, look forward to every day.”

Stage 2, Her 2 Positive Breast Cancer Survivor Becomes Author

breast cancer survivor author, speaker, coach, entrepreneur

“Life is much better when you Choose Happy. Despite your uncontrollable circumstances you have the choice to Choose Happy and to Choose Life.”~ Lakeia Clark

Lakeia was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2017 but she didn’t give up, and defeated cancer. Now she is a photographer, author of “3 Steps To Early Detection of Breast Cancer”, speaker, coach, and entrepreneur. She is the founder of “Choose Happy” and also hosts a podcast show for it. Some other books that she have written are: No!!! Mommy has a boo boo in the boob. It’s Cancer – This is a story to help children cope when a family member is battling breast cancer. Children’s book with coloring pages. Secrets of Breast Cancer knowing it exists is not enough: Secrets of The Battle From A Young Breast Cancer Survivor The Overcoming Season

The Journey

journey of breast cancer

“I noticed a lump in my right breast, I told my family and they insisted that I go get it checked out. Initially, I hesitated about going to the doctor as I thought maybe it was not serious. It was not until I began to have a burning sensation in my breast. It hurt so bad that it brought tears to my eyes. I called and scheduled an appointment. I went in and they did a breast exam. The doctor stated that she felt a mass. They scheduled me for a mammogram and a sonogram because of my age-33. Once the doctor reviewed the results, they insisted on a biopsy because the mass was solid. I scheduled the biopsy a week later. I went to have the biopsy done and headed home. I got in the car and just started praying, that’s all I could do, leave it in God’s hands. I waited a few days and was called back in the office. That’s when the doctors sat me down at a table and said you have breast cancer.

I was first diagnosed August 15, 2017 with Stage 2A breast cancer. I remember being in complete shock when I was diagnosed. I have no family history of breast cancer, and I was only 33. Initially, I was supposed to have a lumpectomy and do hormone therapy. However, a week before my surgery my medical team sent me for additional testing. This is when they found out the cancer was more aggressive than they thought. So, the surgery I had scheduled was changed from a lumpectomy to the install of a mediport in order to receive chemotherapy. Things changed so much that once I finished my chemo treatments, I had to have a mastectomy. I had my surgery and once the pathology report came back a week later it was determined they did not get it all. They did not clear the margins. Therefore, back in surgery I went. The second time they were able to clear all margins and there was no evidence of cancer. After healing a little, I started radiation. After about two weeks of radiation, I went back to follow up with my doctor to find out that I needed to have a year of transtuzumab. I was frustrated because I was looking forward to being done active treatment. However, God has a way of sticking you in a thing and not taking you out until He is ready. What I learn is that from here on out I must look at my cancer as a chronic disease that I have to maintain. It’s just like having a prescription for eyewear. You will have glasses all your life unless you have the surgery. With breast cancer, you will have to be mindful of it forever. It’s just a necessary process in order to ensure our survival.

After many treatments and surgeries later I am here, ready to share my story and spread awareness to young women like myself. If you feel something abnormal go get checked. With an early diagnosis, breast cancer is far more survivable and curable. I hope that my story is able to inspire others that may be going through a difficult situation. I pray everyday simply by saying Heavenly Father, I come to you as humble as I know how to give thanks for the many blessings you have bestowed upon my life. Thank You for the ups and the downs, my cloudy days, and the sunshine and rain. Most Graciously Father, you said it in your word that in order to have a Testimony you Must have a test. To have an abundance of Faith of the size of a mustard seed and believe that, I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me. (Phili 4;13). Father God when you made me the chosen vessel which was already preordained in the womb, that I will be diagnosed with stage 2 breast cancer at the age of 33, I literally thought my life was over and was afraid of the possibility of dying. My mind was cloudy, my heart was broken, I felt that my health was being attack by the enemy But yet, my Faith was never shaken. I often questioned, “Why Me Lord” but God said, “Why Not You”! Don’t you know that God gives his toughest battles to his strongest soldiers. In the Bible Psalm 27;1 , The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is my strength of my life; whom shall I be afraid? I’ve trusted his process and not my diagnosis and by His Stripes, I Am Healed! As I continue to adjust to my new normal, I’ve grown mentally, physically, and spiritually. I know that my work isn’t completed, God doesn’t birth Failures. I have a purpose and I will continue to share my story.”

Motivation to fight cancer

“I wanted to live. I wanted to be here. I felt life was not over for me. I still have much to accomplish. Besides, I believed that God would heal my body if I did my part which was fight and do what my doctors required of me. He would stand by his word that He would protect me.”

The biggest hindrance

“During the time I was diagnosed the only thing that slowed the process in the beginning was ‘Hurricane Harvey’. Due to the inclement weather I was not able to get to the doctor for a month till the city of Houston recovered and roads became accessible. I would call the doctors daily because I knew I had cancer and I was ready to start treatment but had to wait. That was scary.”

Message to other cancer patients

message to other patients

“My message to other cancer patients is fight. Fight to live for you and your loved ones. It’s not over. You still have life. Change the lens in which you view your cancer. Look at your diagnosis not as an obstacle but an opportunity. You have the ability to respond to your situation either negatively or positively. I had a choice on how I responded. I Choose Happy despite of Hell. This entire process was not what I wanted to endure. Yet, it was necessary in order to live after being diagnosed with breast cancer. Some things we go through in life will not feel good but will be essential to our survival. So, keep pushing because you need you.”

22-Year-Old With BRCA2 Gene Chose To Go For A Double Mastectomy

 Brca2 Gene Carrier Chose Double Mastectomy

“Keep your face to the sunshine and you cannot see the shadows. It’s what sunflowers do.”

Emma had a double mastectomy on 13th February 2018. She was just 22 years old then. She is a Body-combat instructor and a teacher in the making.

The Journey

 Brca2 Gene carrier journey

“I was not diagnosed with cancer, but with an hereditary genetic mutation called BRCA2 (Breast Cancer gene). Everybody has BRCA Genes (1 and 2) , they work as tumor suppressors. If one of these two Genes are mutated, your body is much less protected against the development of cancerous cells especially when it comes to breast and ovarian cancer. I got this gene from my mother, who got it from my grandmother. I am the 3rd registered generation carrying this mutation. My chances of getting breast cancer were up to 87%, considering the mutation and my family history. I chose to go for a double mastectomy (breast amputation) and reconstruction at 22. Around my 30s, my ovaries will also be surgically removed.”

Motivation to fight cancer

“My grandmother. She raised me until she passed away when I was 8 years old. She survived breast cancer but developed another cancer after some years, in the uterus and ovaries. I miss her everyday , so I wanted to honor her. I also take this diagnosis as a chance to take my life in control at a young age, to be able to know more about some risks I have. I got the chance to beat breast cancer before it got a chance to beat me.”

Biggest hindrance

“I had complications after my mastectomy, so I had 2 surgeries on the same day instead of one. I had heavy internal bleeding, lost 2 liters of blood that day. That felt very tough. I also am struggling with the lack of sensation in both breasts. I do not feel anything anymore and that can be emotionally very challenging at times.”

Message to other cancer patients

Message for cancer patients
“To all cancer patients / genetic mutants, life is a gift to keep fighting for. You got this, we got this!”

Satge 2, Hormone Positive Breast Cancer Survivor Documents Her Journey In Her Blog

Breast Cancer Survivor Documents Her Journey In Her Blog

Quote by Marilyn Monroe: “Never let anyone dull your sparkle”

Megan is a breast cancer survivor who, despite complications post-cancer, continues to walk with purpose and determined to change the narrative of the cancer experience.
 
The Diagnosis
 
“I knew something was wrong two years before cancer presented itself. First, my shoulder length, straight hair started falling out on the left side and completely changed texture from soft to brittle. Then I noticed all these tiny green bruises all over my lower left leg. I kept getting a blood test after blood test, but it showed nothing. I thought it was my hormones. None of my doctors thought cancer. Then I had a bruise in a perfectly shaped circle on the back of my left arm. My primary knew something wasn’t right but still couldn’t figure it out. Then a month after my 39th birthday, I felt a huge mass in my left breast. I knew it wasn’t a lump because of the location and the size and feel of it. That was on 8/31/15. I called my primary and she immediately wrote the order for me to get a diagnostic mammogram. I had a clear mammogram at 35, so I was told to come back when I was 40. Well, I had the ultrasound and was told it was a mass on 9/4/15 and needed a biopsy, which I got on 9/11/15. Then I got the ‘cancer call’ at exactly 3:05 pm on 9/14/15 and told I had Invasive Lobular Breast Cancer. My life was forever changed”.
 
The Journey
journey of breast cancer survivor
“I like to use the word ‘path’ instead of the journey. I had never felt so scared and out of control than when I had to get chemo. My tumor was growing aggressively, so we had to first contain it and then shrink it as much as possible before surgery in order to get a good margin. I got diagnosed on a Monday, met with the breast cancer surgeon on a Wednesday and plastic surgeon on that Friday. I didn’t even understand why I was seeing a plastic surgeon because I was in such a shock. Everything was happening so quickly. I was diagnosed as Stage IIA, ER/PR + and HER2-. I had 4 Adriamycin and Cytoxan and 12 Taxol chemo treatments (five months). In the words of my oncologist, I had the ‘mother of chemo and side effects’. Aside from the loss of hair, all my fingernails fell off, my toenails died, mouth sores, tongue swelling, bone pain after each Neulasta shot, tongue turned black, palms of my hands and feet looked burned, dizziness, burning of skin where my port was taped, chemo brain and chemo-induced neuropathy. Then after my lumpectomy/reconstruction and reduction on 3/28/16, I got two infections and had to get 543 ccs of fluid drained because I was healing so slowly and fluid just built up over six weeks. My plastic surgeon said that is was not common to have that much fluid built up after a lumpectomy. Then I had 33 radiation treatments which ended two days before my 40th birthday in 2016. I burned so badly that my flesh started coming off under my arm. My left breast was burned, and the beams went straight through to my back and burned the side of my neck.
 
My cancer path during active treatment was utterly traumatic. Little did I know that my post-treatment would be even worse. My body was resistant to Tamoxifen, Evista. I change my oncologist and went to a different cancer center for post-treatment after my active treatment oncologist refused to listen to me when I said my body couldn’t tolerate those two pills. So, my second opinion oncologist suggested we try Lupron injections. Once again, my body betrayed me. The pain was so excruciating, that we had to stop after just one injection. So, after my oncologist and gynecologist consulted with each other, it was determined that I needed a hysterectomy and bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy. My mother is an ovarian survivor, the maternal grandmother had cervical cancer and my maternal aunt had breast cancer. They felt this was the only way to help reduce recurrence by medically inducing me into menopause so I could take an AI. On 2/15/17, I had that major surgery. I will never be able to have children of my own. Then, my body was resistant to Arimidex. I discovered I fall into the 25% category of breast cancer survivors whose body cannot tolerate any of the medications to help prevent recurrence in both pre and post-menopausal women. I haven’t been physically or mentally right since”.
 
Motivation to fight cancer
 
“Honestly, I didn’t want to die and leave my cat (who is my child), or my mother alone and grieving. I’m a natural fighter and very resilient, but there were times when I felt like giving up”.
 
The biggest hindrance
 
“The biggest hindrance was being single and going through this nightmare. There was no husband or boyfriend to help me when I got sick in the middle of the night. There were many times I wish I had someone there to just bring me some water. It was exceptionally tough having to continue working full-time while on chemo. The pressure to not only work but DO my work at the same pace and efficiency was difficult, especially when you factor in chemo brain. I also had to do a ton of research to get grants and financial help because my deductible was so high thanks to crappy insurance”.
 
Message to other fighters
message to other cancer patients

“My message to cancer patients is to let your friends and family help. It’s impossible to appear strong and fine all the time. Rest, drink tons of water and keep your sense of humor. Be your own advocate. It’s okay to question your medical team and ask ‘why’ instead of just accepting everything they say. Ask as many questions as you want and ask if you can record each visit. Even though I brought my mother to all my appointments, it was helpful to listen back to the recordings. Most of all, know at some point you will go through the stages of grief, especially if a young adult diagnosed under 42 because cancer takes away so much of you both physically and mentally. Be prepared for possible PTSD. I didn’t expect that to happen to me, but it did. It’s important to build a circle of support as you process all that has happened once you’ve moved into post-treatment or maintenance treatment”.

Breast Cancer Survivor Runs A Detective Agency, Is A Keynote Speaker And Author

Breast Cancer Survivor Runs A Detective Agency, Is A Keynote Speaker And Author

 

“Fearless does not mean you aren’t afraid; it means you accept the fear and move forward anyway.”

Brianne Joseph was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2015. She has successfully defeated her disease. She owns a detective agency. She is a Private Investigator, Keynote Speaker, and an Author.
 
The Diagnosis
 
“I was diagnosed in 2015 with IDC and DCIS. I’m a Private Investigator. I own a detective agency. I was on my way to my office when I got the call.”
 
The Journey
journey of breast cancer survivor
“Having a cancer diagnosis is absolutely the worst feeling in the world. Cancer took my spark. Cancer took my drive. Cancer took my ambition. Cancer took my voice. I was an empty shell. I’m so grateful that I found my voice again and reclaimed everything breast cancer had taken away from me. I wrote a book about my experience for newly diagnosed patients to help them find their light again. It’s entitled, “Punk Azz Cancer, How Dare You!”. It was #1 on the Amazon bestseller list. Through my breast cancer empowerment brand, Punk Azz Cancer, I now travel the country as a keynote speaker at Oncology conferences. I educate doctors and Oncology staff on ways they can empower their patients from a patient’s perspective; which ultimately transforms the patient/provider experience. My cancer empowerment website is www.briannejoseph.com or punkazzcancer.com”
 
Motivation to fight cancer
 
“My children were my motivation to fight and eventually come out of my depression. They were 1 and 3 years old at the time.”
 
Biggest hindrance
 
“The biggest hindrance was trying to find other survivors like me. Throughout my journey, I’d often wonder where were all of the entrepreneurs and mothers of young children with breast cancer? It’s important to find support, hope, and encouragement from those who share your same experience.”
 
Message to other cancer patients
message to cancer patients
“My message to other cancer patients is to try to gain control over your thoughts and your mindset. We are who we believe we are. Believe that you are strong even when it seems impossible to feel your strength.”

Hereditary Breast Cancer Survivor Undergoes Double Mastectomy

Breast Cancer Survivor is a fitness enthusiast

“Life is too short to waste any amount of time on wondering what other people think about you. In the first place, if they had better things going on in their lives, they wouldn’t have the time to sit around and talk about you. What’s important to me is not others’ opinions of me, but what’s important to me is my opinion of myself.”

Catharina was diagnosed with Breast cancer on 28th December 2007. She has successfully defeated her disease. She is a fitness enthusiast and is living life to the fullest.
 
The Diagnosis
 
“I was diagnosed with breast cancer on 28th of December 2007. I was only 25 years old at the time.”
 
The Journey
journey of breast cancer survivor
“Two years before I was diagnosed with breast cancer, I was told that I had a hereditary breast cancer genome. I and my husband decided to try to get children so that I could then remove my breasts as a precaution. I was pregnant in the eighth month when I felt a nod in my left chest in the shower. I had to undergo different examinations and after three weeks I received my diagnosis. Two days after my cancer diagnosis, my daughter was born. About a week later I received my first chemotherapy treatment. I could not remove the chest at once because the tub was so big. They had to shrink it first. After four chemotherapy treatments, I could finally remove the breast. Because I was afraid to get breast cancer in my other chest, I actually chose to also remove the right breast for preventive purposes. After surgery, I had to undergo four additional treatment tasks. At the end of treatment, I received radiation therapy five days a week for five consecutive weeks. I finished all my treatments nine months after I received my breast cancer diagnosis.”
 
Motivation to fight cancer
 
“My family and my newborn daughter! My family has always been by my side. They have supported, encouraged, listened and gave me a lot of positive energy when I felt the worst. I am extremely happy and grateful that I have been able to share this trip with my family. They have walked beside me in all the difficult times and despair. They’ve believed me even when my faith was the weakest and gave me all their support.“
 
Biggest hindrance
 
“The biggest obstacle to me during this trip was that I lost friends that I thought I could trust and which I thought would be by my side. I also missed the exchange of experiences of someone of the same age when I was only 25 years old when I received my cancer diagnosis. As you probably know, it’s not too common to suffer from breast cancer as young as 25 years old. So it was tough to have no one to talk to who went through the same as me.”
 
Message to other cancer patients
message to other patients
“Going through a cancer trip is very tough and miserable. Through this disease, I’ve learned who my closest friends are and who I can share. Living with cancer has made me more grateful for life and appreciates all that I have in my life. I feel rich by having a wonderful family, my lovely daughter, my friends, and my nice home. I’m happy and grateful for what I have, although there are of course days I miss my breasts and remind me of what I’ve been through. (I have had a breast reconstruction a number of times but unfortunately they have failed. Therefore, I have to continue my life without any breasts but it is a completely different story) To all of you who fight: cancer can be overcome! There is a light at the end of the tunnel! Do not shut up all your feelings, talk to your loved ones because I promise that they will make every effort to be on your side. Focus on what makes you feel good and prioritize yourself first. Life goes on and you will see life with completely different eyes. Feel free to find any association where you can meet people who have been in the same area as you are and where you can exchange experiences with each other. It’s actually not the same to talk to your family. Sometimes you may need to talk to someone who has gone through the same thing and in some way recognizes the feelings that you have.”

Her 2 Positive Breast Cancer Survivor Shares Her Journey

Her 2 + Breast Cancer Survivor Story

“I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me”

Brenda was diagnosed with Her 2 + Breast Cancer in July 2016. She has successfully defeated her disease. She is full of positive vibes and loves food.
 
The Diagnosis
 
“I was diagnosed with Her 2 + Breast Cancer on my left breast in July 2016. I found the lump when my hand just brushed across my breast by accident. It was a Friday night, so I had to wait until the Monday morning to call my doctor. Then I had to wait a week before I got my appointment for a mammogram. The day of the mammogram I was alone; after taking several views of the breast, I waited in a waiting room for the radiologist to read them. The tech came back after a few minutes and told me they needed to perform an ultrasound. I was very nervous at this point. During the ultrasound, the tech was very quiet. I could almost feel what she was thinking. Once she was done, I was told to stay in the room so the radiologist can come and talk to me. The Dr came in and told me there was some calcifications and wanted me to have a biopsy. My appointment was set up for a needle biopsy the next day. That morning my husband took me to my appointment. I met with my breast surgeon, and a needle biopsy was done on the lump on the breast, she took five samples from the lump. I was numb but I could feel the pressure. Samples were also taken from a swollen lymph node under my arm. It felt like an hour of her poking into me with that needle. Once the surgeon was done; she told me she was worried it might be cancer. But will wait to hear from the lab for pathology results. She left the office, and I just started crying, I was so afraid. My husband did his best to console me. I remember the medical assistant came into the room after I got dressed; she was so kind. And told me not to worry, that the surgeon is very good. Six days later, the breast surgeon called me on the phone to confirm that the pathology results confirmed it was breast cancer. I was home alone when that call came in, I cried again. What was happening to me?”
 
The Journey
 
journey of her2 positive breast cancer
“It was almost a month after diagnosis that I started chemotherapy. Chemo was very difficult for me, both physically and emotionally; the side effects were like nothing I’d been through before in my life. I was prescribed 6 rounds of chemo every three weeks for a total of 4 months. And one year of Herceptin. After my first chemo treatment, I started to lose my hair, it was then I really felt like I was a cancer patient. I shaved my head, I was now bald. Many days I was so weak I could hardly move. The fatigue was enormous. I had lost about 20 lbs, from the stress of the experience as well as not being able to eat from side effects of the chemo…After I was finished with chemo, I had a lumpectomy performed one month later; pathology results showed no residual cancer! The chemo had done its job, praise God! And one month after that, six weeks of radiation therapy. All the treatments and surgery by this time had me wore out physically and emotionally but I could see the light at the end of the tunnel.”
 
Motivation to fight cancer
 
“What motivated me to fight was life itself. I was not done the living. My two sons, my two granddaughters. Life was beautiful and it was precious and I was not ready to let go. I wanted to live and I was not going to let cancer win. My faith in God kept me strong and assured me, I had more life to live. This was just a bump in the road of my life, it was not the end of the road.”
 
Biggest hindrance
 
“The biggest hindrance was that when I was so weak from the side effects of treatment, I could not cook for myself. Nutrition was a concern. Though my husband tried, most of the time he was at work. It was a very difficult time as there was no other help. But by the grace of God, I managed.”
 
Message to other cancer patients
message to cancer patients

“Never give up, though your journey through cancer may be difficult, remain strong. Life is precious, be grateful, smile, laugh. Go for short walks when you’re able. Listen to relaxing music, do whatever will help you to take your mind off cancer. Stay positive. Rely on your family’s love. The love of God. All these things will help to ease your fears.”

Stage 2 Hormone Positive Breast Cancer Survivor Now Runs A Blog

Breast Cancer Survivor Runs Blog Of Her Journey

“From every wound, there is a scar, and every scar tells a story. A story that says ‘I survived’.”

Kim was diagnosed with stage 2b invasive lobular carcinoma but that didn’t end her spirit of life. She fought back with all her might and survived cancer like a champion. Now, she runs Smile Through The Fog – a blog about her journey to inspire others.
 
The Diagnosis
 
“Two years ago, on May 13, 2016, I was diagnosed with stage 2b invasive lobular carcinoma. I was lying in bed one night when I had a sudden feeling to do a self-exam never thinking in a million years that I would find anything. The moment I felt the lump, my gut feeling knew deep down what it was but I naively hoped I was too young.”
 
The Journey
breast cancer survivor journey
“The next few weeks were a blur. I was sent in for numerous scans and blood work and quickly underwent a lumpectomy to remove the 4.5 cm tumor. Because the tumor was aggressive, I was put through 8 cycles of dose-dense chemotherapy, 28 treatments of radiation, and am now on hormone therapy for the next 5+ years. As I neared the end of treatment, a second opinion on my pathology report found my margins weren’t clear and there was a possibility I still had cancer remaining in my breast. I underwent a bilateral mastectomy with immediate latissimus dorsi flap reconstruction 6 months later and have since had 2 more surgeries to exchange for implants and do fat grafting and breast revisions.”
 
Motivation to fight cancer
 
“When I was first diagnosed, I went straight into fight mode and found strength in myself I never knew existed. I was willing to do whatever it took to get rid of this beast and wasn’t going to let it get the best of me. There were times when I could barely muster the energy to get out of bed, but I continued to encourage myself to keep going even if it meant just getting out for a short walk around the block. Even the smallest victories motivated me to keep fighting forward!”
 
The biggest hindrance
 
“The most difficult parts of this journey have been trying to navigate life after cancer. When I was in active treatment, I felt like I had this security blanket wrapped, but as soon as that was ripped away, I felt raw and vulnerable. My future seemed so uncertain and I struggled with the fear of recurrence. It wasn’t until I connected with other young survivors from across the globe that I realized I was not alone.”
 
Message to other fighters
message to cancer patients
“Be patient and more forgiving of yourself when you struggle to achieve the things you once did before cancer. Strive for progress and not perfection. And surround yourself with the ones who understand more than anyone what’s it’s like to go through this because alone we may be strong but together we are unstoppable.”

Stage 2 Triple Positive Breast Cancer Survivor Shares Her Journey

Breast Cancer Survivor's Inspirational Journey

“ Let your faith be bigger than your fear.”

Alicia was diagnosed with breast cancer on March 26th, 2014. She has successfully defeated her disease.
 
The Diagnosis
 
“March 26th, 2014. I found my lump on February 13th and had extra mammograms done, an ultrasound then a biopsy from a top breast surgeon. And the results came back positive for breast cancer.”
 
The Journey
cancer survivor shares her journey
“So in December of 2013, I had a mammogram done and got an all clear. I see my doctor in the 3rd week of January and everything was good. Then on February 13th, 2014 I was out shoveling snow and I had an asthma attack I came in took my inhaler and I was sweaty so as I was wiping the sweat off me I found a lump larger than the size of a golf ball on my left breast. I checked my right side and no lump so I knew something was wrong but I just got the all clear recently so how could I have such a large lump? When I had the ultrasound done the radiologist asked where the lump was and I showed her and she said I needed a biopsy and I asked do I have cancer and she said any time we think there’s a 20 to 100% chance its cancer we need to do a biopsy. She described my lump as an oversized meatball. Really?? Now I can’t look at a meatball the same.
 
So I had the biopsy done on March 25th by the breast surgeon that did not want to wait any longer to have it done. She called me the next day at 6:30 pm and asked was I alone and I said yes, she said she had enough sample and I’m sorry to say that it’s positive for cancer. I was devastated and I couldn’t believe I had breast cancer. Next thing I know I was scheduled to have a double mastectomy on April 25th and started chemo on June 12th. The surgery was the worst surgery I ever had. I felt like I had an iron bra on. Chemo was rough on me and I had a hard time and I had to go every day to have fluids because I couldn’t eat due to mouth and throat sores. I was so sick but I kept fighting. I decided to shave my head before my hair started to fall out as I had very long hair and I couldn’t have my hair fall out in chunks all over the place. So it was easier on me although I couldn’t look at myself and when I did that’s when it all hit me that I really had breast cancer and I’m fighting for my life. I was triple positive so I had trastuzumab after my strong chemo with the red devil as my cancer was aggressive stage 2b as cancer spread to my lymph nodes. I finished chemo on November 6th, 2014.”
 
Motivation to fight cancer
 
“I have 2 girls that needed me so I fought for them. They were my motivation because they needed their mom.”
 
Biggest hindrance
 
“My double mastectomy with reconstruction has been a tough battle as I’m still having more surgeries and my next and hopefully the last one is next month on June 22nd, 2018. I’ve had several surgeries due to complications. I also had to have my ovaries removed. And now I’m on exemestane because my cancer fed off of my estrogen and the side effects are horrible. I now have osteopenia, my teeth are breaking down I had 1 pulled with another 1 need to be pulled and 3 root canals that still need to be done. I also ended up with trigger finger and problems with my left wrist so I had to have surgery last year on my left wrist and thumb. I have severe bone and joint pain. And that’s all side effects of my cancer medication. One thing I didn’t have was a good support system besides the help of my girls.”
 
Message to other cancer patients
message for cancer patients

“Stay strong and have a good support system in place so you can have someone to be there for you and help you get through this tough time. It’s not an easy road but it’s worth the fight to save your life. Ask lots of questions and stay off the internet because it will drive you crazy. Trust me, I couldn’t stop looking up things on the internet and I ended up more scared than I needed to be. Even though I had a tough time and still am it’s not as bad as what you find on the internet. Although I joined groups for breast cancer on Facebook and they helped a lot. So I would definitely join some groups if you have a Facebook account. Keep your head up and fight the good fight. You can do it.”

Breast Cancer Survivor Now Serving And Helping Others

breast cancer survivor is a leader and in board of directors

”If it didn’t rain, nothing would ever grow.”‬‬‬

Felicia Mahone was diagnosed with breast cancer on October 18, 2007. She has successfully defeated her disease. She is state leader for the young survival coalition, patient navigator and in the board of directors for Pretty Dress Foundation.
 
The Diagnosis
 
“On October 18, 2007, my life changed forever, when the doctor said ‘You have cancer.’”
 
The Journey
journey of breast cancer survivor
My Childhood:
 
“I’m a native of Georgia. I had somewhat of a surreal childhood the first ten years of my life. My mother was the epitome of what a mother should be. We were inseparable. She exposed me to so many things. It wasn’t a Saturday that went by that we weren’t doing something. We were always going to museums, the festival of trees, Broadway plays, five-star restaurants and so many vacations. I don’t know if she subconsciously knew that she wouldn’t see me grow up, but she made sure that I had some sense of culture. Sadly to say my mother died when I was ten, and my world came to an end. She was my everything! I would never have imagined losing one person could change my life forever. Today, I strive to be just like her. Even though her fight with breast cancer, she never showed any fear. I attended her chemo and radiation appointments, and while we were there she always encouraged the other patients and was always willing to lend a helping hand. Even on her bed of affliction, she was more concerned for others and not herself. As a child, I often mimicked her while playing with my baby dolls. She inspired me to want to be a mother and take care of people. Even as a small child, I knew that what you do for others is more important than what they can do for you.
 
Breast Cancer Experience:
 
I come from a long family history of breast cancer. From this disease, I lost my mother, three maternal aunts, and one maternal cousin. My cousin was my very best friend. She was 25 years old when I lost her. The death that stood out the most was my cousin. She was young, vibrant, and pretty. She was me. We were the same age. We enjoyed the same places, people, and hobbies. We were practically joined at the hip. If you saw one, you would see the other. I remember the phone call like it was yesterday. She had just given birth to a beautiful baby boy. She called and said the doctor felt a large mass in one of her breasts. They told her she needed a biopsy to make sure it wasn’t anything serious. I remember telling her; “It’s not cancer, it couldn’t be. Your mom had cancer. Karma couldn’t be that bad.” Well, sure enough, it was breast cancer. Stage four. I remember picking her up from the hospital. She got in the car very upset. I asked her what was wrong. She looked at me and said, “The doctor told me that it is a strong possibility I wouldn’t see my son grow up, and I needed to get my stuff in order.” My heart was in my throat. I couldn’t imagine being twenty-four and facing death. I can vividly see the day she died like it was yesterday. I sat next to her hospital bed. At this time she could no longer speak. Every time I walked closer to her, she would shake her legs and moan as if she was trying to tell me something. The look of fear and desperation on her face stills haunts me to this day. Who knew that two years later I would be facing the same thing?
 
On October 18, 2007, my life changed forever, when the doctor said: “You have cancer.” It was at that moment I was determined that I would survive, even though cancer had constantly been a death sentence for my family. I believe that my family was cursed, but the curse had to stop me. I took a step back and thought I was meant to survive. My mother’s death, two rapes, and a home invasion didn’t kill me, then clearly I wasn’t about to let breast cancer break my spirit. Instead of taking the attitude of “why me?”… I took on the attitude of “why not me?” I thought, what better person could God use to beat this disease, show people that cancer isn’t always a death sentence and work to find a cure for it? It is for this reason why I’m so passionate about aiding any cause to fight breast cancer. I truly believe in the American Cancer Society’s slogan, “Creating a World with more Birthdays”. It is because of this belief and their help with advancement in cancer research that I’m alive today. Being a survivor lets me know that hope is alive! I have to say that my experience with breast cancer didn’t go the way I expected. I assumed that my family would step in and take care of me. Clearly, after losing so many people to this disease, you would think they would have been very sympathetic. For the most part, they were very absent. However, my father, sister, and boyfriend, and friends were very supportive. But there were times when I was alone. I remember after taking chemo and my blood count was low. I had to be admitted into the hospital and receive a blood transfusion. I was all alone and scared. I was always told that I was destined for great things, and God was going to use me in a mighty way. I thought maybe God is trying to show me that at the end of the day, all I have is him. And whatever he had in store for me, he was just getting me ready for it.
 
As I laid there in the hospital bed I remembered that when all else forsake me then the Lord will take me up. From that day forth, I made a promise that I didn’t want any other breast cancer patients to feel that they were alone in this battle. I vowed that I would make a difference and do whatever I could to make their journey less painful. Just call me Ms. Breast Cancer. My niece Makalah often says “auntie you love breast cancer.” I really am passionate in the fight against this disease. I’m a team captain for Relay for Life and Making Strides against Breast Cancer, a peer mentor for cancer patients at Emory, an ambassador for the Young Survival Collation, and a patient navigator for Grady. I’m proud to say, I broke the curse. I’m the first survivor in my family in 20 years. My only advice is to live every day as if it was your last. I try not to do anything that I don’t want to or that doesn’t bring me joy, and surround myself with positive people. My faith and believing in Jesus is the only way I got through this. Even if you don’t believe in what I believe, BELIEVE IN SOMETHING.
 
Message to other cancer patients
message for cancer patients
“Be your own advocate.”

Stage 2 Breast Cancer Survivor Shares Her Journey

breast cancer survivor is an adventure seeker

 

“It’s ok to not be ok all the time.”

Shauna was diagnosed with stage 2, grade 3 breast cancer, on December 9th, 2015. She has successfully defeated her disease. She is an adventure seeker and loves the outdoors.
 
The Diagnosis
 
“December 9th, 2015. I found a lump in my breast when I was in the shower. After an ultrasound and biopsy, it was confirmed to be cancer.”
 
The Journey
journey of breast cancer survivor
“I was diagnosed with stage 2, grade 3 breast cancer, and a week later my mom was diagnosed with uterine cancer (she had surgery and was given the all clear!). I had surgery three weeks later, a partial mastectomy and sentinel node dissection. That was later followed by chemo, radiation and hormone therapy. I thought I would be happy and back to the old me right away but I fell into a deep depression. I was struggling with side effects, fatigue and body issues. I started reaching out to young adult support groups to find others who had been through what I had been through. It’s been two years since my diagnosis and I’m still struggling with fatigue, pain and body issues. I have learned how to manage some of the effects and have gradually returned to work.”
 
Motivation to fight cancer
 
“My parents, my sister and my friends. Also, I felt like my life had only started, I wasn’t willing to give it up yet.”
 
Biggest hindrance
 
“Nobody told me how hard it was going to be after cancer.”
 
Message to other cancer patients
message to cancer patients
“You’ve got this, and you’re not alone. Be kind and gentle with yourself.”

Stage 2 Breast Cancer Survivor Becomes An Influencer

Breast Cancer Survivor Becomes An Influencer

“I had cancer, cancer did not have me!”

Micha was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2013. Now she has successfully defeated cancer and become an influential identity & has won several awards till now.
  • 2016 Spirit Reign Visionary award.
  • 2016 Community Woman of the Year award
  • 2015 Top Influencer in the City of Huntsville
  • Nominated for the most slept on radio personality in the south by the Southern Entertainment Awards.
The Diagnosis
 
“In May of 2013, my life was turned upside down. Being diagnosed with stage 2 breast cancer at the age of 31 was more than unbelievable for the first few days. It was unbearable. Before my diagnosis, I just knew that in October people wore pink and I thought only old women got it.”
 
The Journey
 
journey of breast cancer survivor
“I was extremely confused and angry at first. However, after a few days and a great conversation with a close friend of the family, I got it together. I kept it semi-private until I finished half my chemo treatments. I work in radio, so I decided to announce it on the air for my listening audience to be a part of the journey. It was so freeing. From that day on I fought like crazy. After 18 weeks of chemo, lumpectomy, and 37 radiation treatments I was declared Cancer free. I was actually declared that before I started radiation but it was official when I finished those treatments. I had amazing support from my family, friends, co-workers, and church family. My pastor was actually the first person I told. Pastor AD kept me positive even when it was hard to understand. 5 years later I’m still cancer free. I went to work every day, drove, lived alone, celebrated friend’s birthdays and weddings, and I also went on a family trip to Hawaii. My goal was to live. It wasn’t easy at all, but I know it was all God that gave me the strength I did have. I had cancer, cancer did not have me.”
 
Motivation to fight cancer
 
“My family!”
 
The biggest hindrance
 
“Balancing my emotions. Sometimes my thoughts would get the best of me. Whenever you’re used to being in control of your body then all of a sudden you aren’t… it does something to you. Also, loss of taste buds! Everything tasted like cardboard.”
 
Message to other fighters
message to cancer fighters

“Live! Don’t let the diagnosis stop you. It actually should encourage you to live better!”

27 Year Old’s Stage 2 Breast Cancer Survivor Story

breast cancer survivor
“99% is not 100%. I want that other 1%.” – me “YOU are your own best advocate. It’s YOUR treatment plan – OWN it!” – also me 🙂
 
Sarah was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2016 but she has now successfully defeated cancer and lives a happy life with her family and loved ones.
 
The Journey
journey of breast cancer survivor
“Being told at 27 years old and that you have breast cancer is not what anyone expects to hear. Especially when there is no family history of cancer and without the presence of the BRCA 1 or BRCA 2 genes. But I’ve never been much of a conformist when it comes to what’s “normal”, so of course, I did not fit the description of your standard breast cancer patient. In fact, I was even told by 3 doctors that it was “extremely unlikely” that the lump I found under my arm was breast cancer, and 1 of them told me he was 99% sure it WASN’T breast cancer! But I wanted absolute certainty, and since nobody had been able to tell me what it WAS, I pushed for 100%. Sure enough, one inconclusive ultrasound and one biopsy later, it was confirmed. I was one of the few exceptions to the rule. I had breast cancer. I won’t take you through every detail of the rest of my cancer journey.
 
To summarize, I was initially diagnosed at stage I and the treatment plan was lumpectomy & radiation, but after the lumpectomy things changed. They found cancer cells in 1 of the lymph nodes they biopsied which meant I actually staged II and I would likely need chemotherapy. My treatment ended up being lumpectomy to remove the tumor, 4 rounds of chemotherapy over 12 weeks, and 20 sessions of radiation treatment. Thankfully I have been in remission with no evidence of disease since finishing treatment on May 17, 2017!”
 
Motivation to fight cancer
 
“My son, Wesley. He was 3 years old when I was diagnosed. No way I was going to let cancer take his mommy away from him! It also never crossed my mind that I WOULDN’T beat this thing. Not fighting was never an option.”
 
The biggest hindrance
 
“I really had to use my voice. Speak up. Ask questions. Be informed to make decisions. Challenge the status quo and make sure I felt like my treatment plan was just that, MINE. It was difficult at times to get my oncologist to modify the plan and stray even slightly from the “standard treatment recommendations.” But I’m so glad I kept pushing and we were able to agree on what we were BOTH comfortable with.”
 
Message to other fighters
message to cancer patients
“You are not alone! Tap into as many resources as you can for support. I have found Instagram to be the most powerful support network through my journey. YOU are your own best advocate! You know your body better than anyone else possibly could. If something doesn’t feel right to YOU, speak up. Use your voice. Take YOUR treatment plan into your own hands and rely on your doctors for help to GUIDE you through the decision making process. NEVER SETTLE for anything less than 100%! If you’re not satisfied with the answers you’re getting, keep pushing for certainty. Don’t be afraid to continue asking questions until you’re comfortable. Don’t give up! I know it’s a hard fight, but stay positive, and keep going. Just take it 1 day at a time. Lean on others for support. Manage your stress! (Yoga really helps!) Try not to focus on everything all at once, that’s overwhelming. Just 1 thing at a time. But don’t give up, don’t give up hope. There’s always hope!”

Stage 2 (ER Positive, Her 2 Positive) Breast Cancer Survivor Story

stage 2 breast cancer survivor
“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me (Phil 4:13)”.
Desiree was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2015. She has now successfully defeated her disease and lives a healthy life with her family.
 
The Diagnosis
 
“I found a lump while showering. Cancer confirmed July 1, 2015, after a mammogram, two ultrasounds and biopsy. Stage IIA, Invasive Ductal Carcinoma, estrogen positive, and Her2 positive.”
 
The Journey
journey of breast cancer
“My journey consisted of a double mastectomy, 6 rounds of chemo, 18 rounds of trastuzumab and 3 reconstruction surgeries. The unknown was terrifying to me. How was I going to heal, how was I going to come out of this? I was more afraid of chemo than a bilateral mastectomy. I watched both my parents pass away from cancer while on chemo, so was terrified. I remember my first day of chemo and I kept asking myself the same question. What is going to happen to me? I remember praying that morning and asking the Lord for peace. I went into that first round and crushed it. I was in pure peace and got through the week. Side effects were tough but I quickly learned I’m tough! I wasn’t going to let chemo or cancer defeat me.”
 
Motivation to fight cancer
 
“My motivation to fight came from my faith in the Lord, my husband Josh and daughter Destinee. It’s amazing to me (still) how the power of prayer changes lives and circumstances. My husband who found me on the floor bawling my eyes out at 3:00 in the morning began to pray. He called out to the Lord and at that moment he became my hero. I knew then we had to surrender. My daughter kept the laughter. I could always count on her to make me smile. She even stayed in the hospital with me for 7 days. She’s simply amazing. I have been blessed with the most amazing support system from family to friends and even social media. It really takes a village!”
 
The biggest hindrance
 
“My biggest hindrances were not being able to do all the things I loved. Taking care of my family, my home, working and just being active. All these things were so hard to give up. To be honest, letting others do the work for me was very difficult.”
 
Message to other fighters
message for cancer patients
“My message for others is to rely on your faith, let others help, smile a lot and enjoy every moment. Use your journey to uplift others, be the light and spread courage, strength, and hope. Always pray for others even while going through your own tribulations. You can and you will get through this just like myself and many before me. Remember each journey is different and not every side effect is the same. You got this and you’re not alone. I’m in this fight with you!”

Stage 2 (ER positive, Her 2 Positive) Breast Cancer Survivor Now A Fitness Enthusiast

breast cancer survivor fitness enthusiast, preparing for beauty peagent
“I thought I could and I did.”
Shilpa Aneja was diagnosed with diagnosed with stage 2B breast cancer in November 2016. She has successfully defeated her disease. She is preparing herself for an upcoming beauty pageant next year.
 
The Diagnosis
 
“In November 2016, I was diagnosed with stage 2B aggressive breast cancer. Me and my 2.5-year-old baby were playing when suddenly I felt a sharp pain in my left breast. That’s how we came to know about it after all the tests and scans.”
 
The Journey
 
journey of breast cancer survivor
“Though It’s a long journey and I’ve come a long way but to say my story in short and sweet words- So in November 2016, I got diagnosed with stage 2B breast cancer. We did all the tests which came out to be positive. I remember I had tears in my eyes only once when I got diagnosed. We started with 8 rounds of chemotherapy instantly after getting the chemo port inserted. My other tests showed that I was BRCA 1 positive, ER positive, PR negative and Her2 positive. Which is like one in 8 ladies and I was that one chick to get all of this positive. I know that God makes things more difficult for those who He knows can fight and come over it. So, my surgery type was decided. I underwent bilateral mastectomy (removal of both breasts) and oophorectomy (removal of ovaries) So, no more babies for me. I am still under hormonal treatment to suppress my hormones which were actually feeding my cancer cells to grow. Then I had the radiations which were the worst part of the treatment. Those burns and rays… Aaaah!!!! For 25 days I was under radiation therapy. I had to take 18 additional injections for being Her2 positive.
 
I am finished with my treatment in January 2018 (still under pills for 5 years) I’m a big fitness freak and an iron lover. My day starts spending 2 hrs in the gym daily. I eat clean and live a healthy lifestyle. People ask me if I used to eat junk before getting diagnosed. So, the answer is NO. I used to eat healthy before cancer got me and that’s why my immunity power was good during chemo. My cancer is because of my genetic history. I have an upcoming beauty pageant next year for which I’m preparing myself. I still have a minor surgery next month in June for which I’m prepared. But you know what all these things can’t stop me from getting what I want. I’ll take all the crowns for myself. Cancer actually made me stronger. All the best!! Much love!!”
 
Motivation to fight cancer
 
“My 2.5-year-old baby girl”
 
Biggest hindrance
 
“I faced the financial crisis during my treatment as we know treating cancer takes a lot mentally, physically and financially as well. I then started a crowdfunding campaign for myself which made things easier.”
 
Message to other cancer patients
 
message for cancer patients
“I only want to say that people, Cancer is just like any kind of VIRAL now. It is so common nowadays. You can definitely fight it and win over it by your positive attitude and self-will. You just need to stay happy during your entire treatment and think of the happy moments which you are going to spend with your family in the future. No crying, no negativity around you. Only your self will that, yes, you will live whatever happens can make you a winner. Life is too short to cry over things which are not in your hands. So better think and turn up those things which are in your own hands.”

Stage 4 Breast Cancer Fighter Becomes An Author

Stage 4 Breast Cancer Fighter Is An Author
“I am the proof that miracle does exists.”
Riana Trish was diagnosed with breast cancer at the beginning of 2016. She is an author, can be seen at some fine-art photoshoots, working with some creative arts on producing music song, video, photograph, paintings, movie – to support in cancer awareness campaign, spreading hope.
 
The Diagnosis
 
“I was diagnosed with stage 2A breast cancer at the beginning of 2016 with my pre-existing conditions of multiple tumors in lymph nodes, brain edema and uterine tumor for a couple years back. And, leveling up to stage 4 after series of treatment.”
 
The Journey
 
stage 4 breast cancer survivor journey
“Nobody said it’s never been easy. Yes, it’s not easy. My sister passed away from breast cancer just after her second chemotherapy, just right after I finished my surgery. So, you have no idea how my feelings would be like on those days. I went through all the series of surgery, chemotherapy, radiation like every cancer patients did, with all those very real indescribable side effects. The hospital is like my second home as I spent so many times in the hospital as I can remember. Cancer attacks the body. It is an assault of rogue cells trying to take over the body and break down everything in their path. But its attack is no less intensive on the mind and spirit. With all those treatments, only found out at later on that I was relapsed, and spreading, was another chapter. The continuing struggles in the body while to keep it in mind and spirit to stay positive is never been easy. I must say it’s somewhat confusing as well when everybody has been trying to suggest their very best opinions. But at the end of the day, I realize it more than I have to take charge entirely as it’s my own body, my own life. I have to get to know more about my own body, my body alerts. learning to know what it takes, how it takes, when to let go and be still. With all the very rough condition which has passed, I will rely on integrated treatment. Doing everything I can in my power to boost my immune system, and I command my body to fight itself against cancer cells. Every situation counts on growing my faith and hope. Me, being as a cancer patient, never been stopping me to support other cancer patients in many different ways. My statement in my book “I prefer to call it Miracle” has also become my statement of faith that everything happens for a reason, and that is a good reason. So, when I change my mindset to call it, it’s cancer, and all the life situations along the way, like a miracle, it helps me a lot to go through and even to grow through it. Life after cancer might look like a hell in some point of views, but its cancer is only one part. It does not define my life. I am an author, and becoming seen at some fine-art photoshoots, working with some creative arts on producing music song, video, photograph, paintings, movie – to support in cancer awareness campaign, spreading hope and positive vibes for those who have less-hope in life to embrace their miracle within. What such as amazing journey.”
 
Motivation to fight cancer
 
“God Himself is becoming my biggest motivation to fight cancer. I believe everything happens for a reason, and it’s a Godly reason. All is good and positive, even sometimes I can not see the whole picture at first. God’s love and His proof of love poured out into my entire life is my only reason that I will never ever give up on my journey, knowing my all is in His hand. I am that precious.”
 
Biggest hindrance
 
“My biggest hindrances would be my own fear. Fear of financial situation, fear of being sicker, fear of rejected, fear of loss, fear of….. name it every common situation in life. So, I keep on fighting this fear, be stronger and be braver.”
 
Message to other cancer patients
 
message for cancer patients
“Please do take over our own body, including mind and spirit. We have the right to choose what it’s best for our body above everyone else’s opinions. Learn the process wisely, go through patiently, and keep growing through it. We are very precious in God’s eyes, so respect this privilege by learning to be our best version despite our “new normal”. Never lose a hope. Embrace our miracle within.”

Stage 3 Breast Cancer Survivor Diagnosed While Pregnant

Breast Cancer Survivor Now A Wellness Coach
“ This too shall pass.”
Sharon was diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer in October 2014. She has successfully defeated her disease. She is a wellness coach and supports people’s health and fitness Goals.
 
The Diagnosis
 
“2014, gut instinct after finding out my sister had it”.
 
The Journey
 
breast cancer survivor shares her journey
“Oct 2014, my pregnant younger sister rang to tell me to tell she had late stage 4 breast cancer. We were distraught!! I was also pregnant at the time…8 days later, I was diagnosed with late stage 3 breast cancer. (we later found out we do not carry the BRCA gene!) I was a teacher of 17 years and literally had to stop overnight. I was 7 months pregnant and we had to bring my baby on so we could save both our lives. I was able to cuddle my baby in the hospital for 4 days before my battle began.
 
My partner (who just proposed 2 weeks earlier) gave up his business of 23 odd years and helped bring up my 3 other children and our newborn. My children nursed me and never left my side. Through my chemotherapy, radiotherapy, full hysterectomy, mastectomies, and double reconstruction, implants and infections my family became my rock. I lost everything … my health, my identity, the chance to enjoy with my newborn and children, my hair, my health, my job, my lady parts, my smile, my confidence, many friends, all our money and my soul. But throughout the 8 operations and dark times, complete strangers (along with my family) became mine, “why”. Strangers put money in our letterbox, left cards with vouchers, gifted us food hampers and left casseroles at our door. Complete strangers equipped us with all we could need for a newborn…although mortified and embarrassed at times.. we were also humbled! It was here our family quickly learned about “the power of people, helping people”, at my darkest point where I questioned how I was ever going to continue on living in this pain and misery, I came across some natural products through a health and wellness company that helped turn my health and life around… it wasn’t magic of course… it was just the nutrition that my body needed to get back on track. I could barely move due to bone pain, steroids had me put on major weight, and I was clinically depressed… I hated myself and who I had become… I loathed happy people and resented life… I could not understand why this slow death sentence had happened to both me and my sister and our families. Within 2 weeks of taking this nutrition, my health started shifting… I immersed myself into personal development, surrounded myself with positive happy people and my life started shifting… I was able to be a mummy again.!!! I threw myself into embracing positivity in every area and blessed and released anyone and anything that didn’t serve me well. Uncannily, out of all the pain, fear, loneliness and doubt, I was able to dig deep and find a side to me that I never knew existed… I discovered the real me and finally found alignment, health, and hope. I am so grateful.”
 
Motivation to fight cancer
 
“My newborn and children and partner… I would lay in bed, look out the window and see them playing in the garden and I could not be a part of it… it cut me to the core… many times. I had no strength to even hold my own baby. I knew I didn’t want my life to be like this and that I had the choice to sink or swim…. my eldest 3 had already seen me go through a painful divorce…something they had to go through as well… I sure as hell wasn’t going to have them lose a mummy on top of it! My sister and my baby niece and her battle was also huge motivation… I needed to stay around to help her!”
 
Biggest hindrance
 
“I became my greatest hindrance… I got in my own way!!! (Negative thoughts, sense of helplessness etc) Lack of money became an unwanted stress as well”
 
Message to other cancer patients
message for cancer patients
real deep!!! You will surprise yourself and discover a side to you… a strength you never knew existed. Although your journey is soul destroying… stay as positive as you can, focus on the little things… things you can be grateful for… believe and trust in your body (even though you may feel it has failed you). The mind is a powerful thing and the body follows!! Trust in you now more than ever, and trust in your journey even though it is so frightening. Learn to drop your pride through your journey and lean on the kindness of others (even strangers)… people are put in your path for a reason!! It is a humbling experience… bless and release all that brings negativity to you. Your life will never be the same again, but YOU WILL smile again… you will enjoy life again… just on a completely different level… “paying it forwards will soon become your mantra”!!”

Satge 2 Triple Negative Breast Cancer Survivor Story

Breast Cancer Survivor Works On A Social Mission

Shannon was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2015. She has now successfully defeated cancer and works on a social mission to use fashion as the platform to spark the social change that restores humanity.

The Diagnosis

“I was diagnosed with stage 2 triple negative breast cancer in 2015”.

The Journey

stage 2 triple negative breast cancer

“On November 13, 2015, I was diagnosed with breast cancer and yes that was a shock for me too. This was definitely a game changer, to say the least. For a slight moment fear tried to jump in and have me thinking that my passion to serve others would end. Now, I know you may be thinking ‘OMG this is awful’, but before you start feeling sorry for me, let me tell you how this diagnosis has given me the opportunity to share my story of faith and perseverance.

After a lumpectomy, chemotherapy, and radiation, I knew God had more for me and my journey was not going to be a static nor ordinary with this cancer.

Now, I share what has been taboo or hidden in secrecy due to its life-threatening magnitude. I help professional entrepreneurs get their life back after cancer, and I use my gifts of art, creative design and speaking to turn their passions and causes into marketable fashion.

Cancer affects everyone and everything. I’m sure you know what I mean. When we think about how a negative entity sets in and destroy someone or something, we usually refer to it as a “CANCER“. LET ME TELL YOU THAT CANCER IS NOT MY ENTITY. Cancer doesn’t live here anymore and I will show you how to get your life back.”

Motivation to fight cancer

“After my diagnosis with Cancer in 2015, I knew that I was not you going to let #Cancer take my life. Taking my life was not even an option. I just knew that I was going to need to get my health together and take some time for #ME. I knew that I was going to need to dig deep and find the strength to keep my smile and my drive to make things happen.”

The biggest hindrance

“The hindrances were my ability to get back my full level of energy I had prior to cancer and the strength back in my arms.”

Message to other cancer patients

message for cancer patients

“My name is Shannon Griffin. I speak on survivorship of circumstances that try to take your life and keep you trapped. I help survivors get their life back, walk in their faith to activate their gifts.”

Breast Cancer Survivor Shares Her Amazing Journey

Breast Cancer Survivor's Journey

“Live, laugh, love”

Michaela Jane was diagnosed with breast cancer in May 2016. She has successfully defeated her disease. She is a Pagan Eclectic Witch, a Goth, website hobbyist, part-time casual blogger and gamer who loves cats, books, tech, life, the world, the universe.

The Diagnosis

In May 2016, after having an inverted nipple. She visited a hospital after testing doctors confirmed she was diagnosed with breast cancer with a 5.5 cm breast lump.

The Journey

breast cancer survivor

“On May 3rd, 2016 I was diagnosed with Breast Cancer.

It was a shock! There was no cancer in my family, anywhere that I knew of! I have never smoked. I hadn’t drunk since my twenties!

No one can prepare you for something like this. No one really expects to get cancer. Even with the odds at 1 in 3 would get cancer, you still do not expect it to be you. The sad fact is, now, anyone born after 1960 has a 1 in 2 chance of getting it.

I had breast cancer. I also had a lump. A 5 cm lump!!! How? You could not feel a lump! I had my mammogram 2 years ago and it was clear. There was no lump. Everything I had been told in the past, how to check myself etc, did not help me in any way. I had fallen through the cracks. I think I was even more devastated at this point.”

She had a mastectomy and was given chemotherapy after it.

“The chemotherapy treatment was very hard. I started my 18-week chemotherapy treatment on Friday 22nd July. Needles! I Hate them. Chemotherapy was all about needles.”

After this, she was cancer free.

“I had finished my treatment. It felt odd. Suddenly I was alone, discharged for now from the hospital, I was not due back for a few months! I did not know what to expect. I was a mess. I was fat, bloated, tired, in pain, no hair, no energy, and no self-esteem. I was going to be on Tamoxifen for a few years and that has a weight gain side effect! How long was this all to last! Everything I had read said you could expect to feel good again by about three months, and I had absolutely no idea how! I was a real mess. How do you start again, pick up where you left off.”

After months of recovery.

“By the 1st April 2017, I was back to work fully on both my morning and afternoon jobs. I still suffer from tiredness and have to go back to bed each lunchtime still but I am a lot fitter, stronger and happier than I have been for years.”

“It has been a huge battle. It has been a journey I wish on no person. No one comes out of this without some scars. it also changes you, how you look and live life, how you feel things, how you react to others. You are also more grateful for life, you are alive, you have survived, you live each day as it is a gift. You will NEVER be as you were. You are a cancer survivor.”

Motivation to fight cancer

“To still be here for my son even though he had grown up “

Biggest hindrance

“Lack of empathy from my oncologist.”

Message to other cancer patients

Message for cancer patients

“Smile! You can get through it.”

Stage 3 Breast Cancer Survivor Is Now A Fitness Enthusiast

Stage 3 Breast Cancer Survivor Fitness Enthusiast

“Whether you think you can, or you cannot, you are right.” -Henry Ford

Adriana was diagnosed with breast cancer stage 3 in January 2018. She has successfully defeated her disease. She is a fitness enthusiast and mother of 4 lovely children.

The Diagnosis

She was diagnosed with breast cancer stage 3 in January 2018.

The Journey

stage 3 breast cancer survivor journey

“Cancer has been a blessing to me and my family. I decided to take cancer as if it was a cold. I knew that God, my attitude, exercise and meditation it was imperative to my new path of health. I didn’t feel sorry for myself, not even in my darkest moments. I know it was temporary and I was going to be okay.

My advice is simple. No one knows what is going to happen, we can all die in an instant. So how do you want to embrace your present! Mindful or sad waiting for something it might not even happen! Stay happy, the rest will take care of itself”

Motivation to fight cancer

“Life.”

Biggest hindrance

“Understanding that my body wasn’t as strong as it used to be.”

Message to other cancer patients

Message for cancer patients

“I will say, don’t listen to any negative comment. Believe and picture yourself healthy. Listen to your body, love yourself! Rest when you need, cry when you feel it! But no matter what, do not give up on yourself.”

Breast Cancer Survivor Gives Tips For Patients To Defeat the Disease

breast acnecr survivor is a yoga teacher.

“It does, what it does. If you feel not right just walk away.”

Titaree Miharu was diagnosed with Breast cancer in, 2015. She successfully defeated her disease and now is a yoga teacher.

The Diagnosis

“She was 34-year old when she was diagnosed with second stage breast cancer.”

The Journey

stage 2 breast cancer survivor journey

“I use to take care of my mom and pay all the bills for our houses. When I was sick I lost my job as a model. I had no income also I didn’t have any health insurance. My boyfriend broke up with me after I got chemotherapy for the second time. We were in a relationship for 17 years.

After her diagnosis, she underwent a right side mastectomy. After her successful surgery, she received 6 cycles of chemotherapy.

After this, she was declared cancer-free. Nearly after 3 years of her mastectomy, she recently got a surgery for breast implant this year. Her journey was filled with many difficulties but she stood strong and overcome them. Not only did she defeat cancer but also trained herself to be a certified yoga trainer.

Motivation to fight cancer

“Belief in myself, I’m the boss of this body”

The biggest hindrances

“Money and Emotional unsteadiness.”

Message to other cancer patients

Message for cancer patients
  • Don’t over think; it will make your situation even worse. Start living in the moment.
  • You need to trust your doctors, they have more experience and knowledge of the disease.
  • Don’t be shy, feel free to share your feelings with others and don’t hesitate in asking for help from others.
  • When you are diagnosed with cancer, don’t panic and don’t blame yourself for it.
  • Always Stay strong and love yourself.
  • Remember to smile and stay positive.
  • Stop thinking what other people think about you.
  • Living in simple rules Eat, sleep, poop, enjoy!

Breast Cancer Survivor Shares Her Motivational Journey To Give Hope

Breast Cancer Survivor

“You never know how strong you truly are until you go through something like this.”

Niki was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2017. Now, she has successfully defeated her disease and lives and happy & healthy life with her boyfriend.

The Diagnosis

“November 30th, 2016, I was in the shower getting ready for work. My mum always encouraged me to feel my breast as I was growing up so I was doing a routine self-examination in the shower. I noticed a small lump, the size of a 10c coin. I told my partner about it, but not overly concerned and thought I’ll make an appointment down the track to get it checked out.

When I arrived at work, I told my work colleague/supervisor about the lump and that I’m getting more and more concerned about it so he advised I leave and go to the doctors as I would be distracted by it all day.

As I was on my way to the GP I called Breast Screening Australia asking if I can book myself in for an appointment, as soon as they asked me for my age and I told them 25, they said they can’t do it and hung up.

I saw my GP and she referred me to an Ultrasound. Once the result came back, she had a feel and told me that it was just a cyst and I had nothing to worry about. I asked what I should do if it grows or if it hurts and she told me to take Panadol and that it shouldn’t grow.

2 weeks later I had emergency surgery (laparoscopy number 5. I also have Endometriosis), for a ruptured cyst in my right Ovary and removal of my appendix. I was back at work 1 week later.

December 29th, 2016, I had a dinner booked at 10:15 pm at Dinner by Heston for my partners birthday! I noticed on our “fancy night out” that I spent most of it scratching my right breast. It was really itchy and red but I thought from all the scratching and bacteria under my skin, it was causing the redness.

The next day it was my partners birthday so we went out during the day for a bit and noticed a bit of growth in my right boob but it wasn’t as itchy. I stopped past my mum and dads house on the way back home and mum recommended I go to the hospital. My partner and I ended up going out for some drinks that night.

NYE, Dec 31st, 2016. I woke up that morning and noticed that overnight, my breast had grown significantly and it looked very angry. I turned to my partner and I told him that it was the time to take me to the hospital.

He took me to the Royal Women’s Hospital in Melbourne and I was admitted at midday. As it was during the holiday period, there were no specialists available at the time. They asked if I had ever had a mammogram done and I replied with “No”. I had 2 ultrasounds that afternoon and they told me that they “think” it’s mastitis. I didn’t know what that was so I called my sister and asked her. She advised that it can’t be as I’ve never had children. She then explained to me what mastitis was and so when the nurses came back into my room, told them that it can’t be for that reason, because I have never even fallen pregnant. The nurses looked puzzled.

I spent NYE watching the fireworks in Ward 5A aka the Complex Ward. With women whom I have never met, my partner and nurses, I was a bit anxious and scared about what was going to happen over the next few days. It was really frustrating and no one knew what was wrong with me. Blood tests were coming back all clear and nothing was being picked up in the ultrasound.

Finally, on 1st Jan 2017, the Breast Fellow came in and introduced herself to my family and I and advised that I was booked for a Mammogram that morning.

After my mammogram, I was sitting in the waiting room and after a couple of minutes, 6 people walked out of a room and the woman who did my mammogram scan started walking towards me. At that point, I knew something was wrong and that they had found something. She advised that she needs to get another scan and that an MRI has been booked for straight after that.

After both scans, they took me back to my room where my parents, my partner and I would be waiting for the results. A couple of hours later, the Breast Fellow, Ward Nurse, Breast Care Nurse, Counsellor, and Social Worker came in. The Breast Fellow sat next to my bed, held my hand and said: “I don’t know how you went through that scan but we’re sorry to tell you it’s breast cancer“. My initial reaction was shocking, but then I broke down and I looked over at my partner and my parents who were distraught about the news. I looked over to the Breast Fellow and asked “How long do I have left to live?” she responded by saying “We can’t answer that until we do some further scans.”

The Journey

breast cancer survivor journey

“It’s been a long journey. One that I’m still going through. It’s been painful, frustrating, exhausting and an educational journey. I have dealt with the emotions of my diagnosis, the pain from my surgeries and scalp cooling, the constant hormonal changes with IVF/Egg Collection and Menopause. Radiotherapy and infections, the frustration of the uncertainty and the waiting around. The sadness of losing my breasts and my hair. I’ve learned so much about myself and my resilience and strength. I’ve learned to be kind to myself and my body. I’ve learned acceptance. Although I still have more surgeries scheduled, I know my only way is up.”

Motivation to fight cancer

“I was 25 years old at the time of my diagnosis and I had a whole life ahead of me. My motivation was and still is my partner and traveling the world.”

Message to other fighters

Message for cancer patients

“Knowledge is power, I think it’s important to know everything you can regarding what you’re about to go through. Know all of your options and you do what you have to do to make the right decision for you. Have trust in your medical team and work with them in making the best decision for you. Listening to your body is also really important, it will help with your journey. Take some time for some self-care.”

Triple Negative Breast Cancer Survivor Runs A Cancer Awareness Blog

Triple Negative Breast Cancer Survivor Runs A Blog

“ Open your eyes and go for it”

Daniela was diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer on 21st, October 2015. She has successfully defeated her disease. She runs a German cancer awareness and motivation blog.

The Diagnosis

“In May 2015 I found a lump in my right breast by taking a shower. At the beginning of June, I had an ultrasound, which showed all is unremarkable. a normal fibroadenoma. The next ultrasound in September was remarkable. It doubled and I got a biopsy, on 21st, October 2015 and I was diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer”

The Journey

Triple NegaTtive Breast Cancer Survivor's Journey

“My journey began with the diagnosis. I am the first one in my family and I have no BRCA mutation. One week later, I had my sentinel node surgery. Lucky me, cancer didn’t spread. One week later, I got my port on Friday 6th, November and on my Monday 9th, November 2015 I had my first neoadjuvant chemotherapy. We prayed so much that my 3.5cm big tumor will be killed by it. I got 4 rounds if EC and 12 rounds of paclitaxel. My last chemo was on 18th, April 2016.

During this 6 months, I took care of myself. I use to eat healthy food, practice yoga, tried meditation, walk often in nature. I had not so many side effects, lucky me, on 12th, May 2016 was my breast-conserving surgery and 3 weeks later I got information about having a complete remission. After some weeks of recovery, my radiation began. My treatment ended on 22nd, August after 33 radiation treatments.

In Germany, you have the opportunity to get in rehab for 3 weeks and it was a very recovering time. My first day of work was on 6th, December 2016 and since 30th, January 2017 I was back fulltime. Okay, not really… I treat myself with a 4 days working week. On 12th, May I had my 2 years cancerversary.”

Motivation to fight cancer

“My life! I love my life, my family and being an auntie!”

Biggest hindrance

“Honestly, my time during the treatment was good. Fewer side effects, great family, and a good body and soul balance. My personal hindrance was the coming back to the everyday life, without losing myself in stress. It is still hard work”

Message to other cancer patients

Message for cancer patients

“Love yourself and be kind to yourself. Listen to your soul and your body and if you have a bad day, it is okay. If we couldn’t have one, who else?!”

Stage 2 Triple Negative Breast Cancer Survivor Walked 5k To Celebrate Victory

“I may have cancer, but cancer will never have me!”

Kere was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2014. We are very happy to let you know that she has now successfully defeated cancer and lives a happy & healthy life with her family.

The Diagnosis

“My Dog sniffed it out in January of 2014, a biopsy confirmed it”

The Journey

“I was diagnosed with stage 2B Triple Negative Breast Cancer on January 29, 2014. I started chemo on March 5th with a chemo cocktail of weekly Taxol for 12 weeks and Carboplatin in every third chemo for a total of 4. I was supposed to follow up with A/C (“The Red Devil”) but after one treatment, we discontinued because I was HIGHLY allergic.

On May 27th, 2014, I had a PET Scan that came back clean. So we discontinued chemo and moved on to surgery. I had a bilateral mastectomy in August of 2014, with 17 lymph nodes removed and expanders placed immediately. Out of 17 nodes, 2 were dirty. I had my expanders swapped for saline implants in October of 2014 and had three weeks to heal before starting radiation. Apparently, saline implants hold up well with radiation. I started 26 rounds of radiation in November of 2014 and finished just before Christmas. I walked a 5 K the following day, to celebrate.”

Motivation to fight cancer

“My newly born grandson, who just turned 4, and my three children”

The biggest hindrance

“My pectoral muscle detached from my sternum on the non-cancer side while attending massage therapy school, and instead of fixing it, my PS sent me to a different PS at Mayo in Rochester MN who was doing a “cutting edge” new surgery with implants on top of the pectoral muscle. Since I was active and paddled on a survivor’s dragon boat team, he thought I would be a good candidate. This led to a series of reconstruction complications, due to my lymphatic system no longer working properly.

I had cellulitis twice, I ended up having the new expander removed and went straight to implants. I again ended back up in the hospital and had to have the implant removed. I walked around as a uni-boober for 6 months before having a DIEP flap surgery, with another two to follow. I have had over 10 surgeries and eventually need one more. The mesh used in my stomach is weakening and needs to be replaced at some point. I am sick of hospitals, surgeries, and recoveries and not in any hurry to have this done.”

Message to other cancer patients

“Even on your worst days, have faith. Laughter got me through the darkest times”

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