I was diagnosed with stage IIIB IDC, PR+ at 26 years old. I knew one day I might face this challenge because my mother died from metastatic breast cancer when she was only 41.
My journey has been difficult, even 7 years past diagnosis I have secondary issues related to my cancer treatment: neuropathy, complex regional pain syndrome, tachycardia, muscles that have been removed due to surgery complications (I’ve had 30+ cancer-related surgeries), and infertility. When I was diagnosed I lost my job, my husband left me, my life fell apart. But in that destruction of my life, I was able to build anew.
I discovered how incredibly brave I am, I learned to let the small stuff slide, I have learned to appreciate the moments and memories instead of possessions. I also learned to love my body, something I have never done before. I fell in love with myself, saw my magic, and it has been the most wonderful thing. I am proud of my scars, they represent my struggle & what I have overcome. I want to share my story because so many women are unable to see anything except their perceived flaws. I show them my scars & tell them my story to inspire the same confidence in others that I have.
Although I’m not well enough to maintain full-time employment, I am fortunate to work for an amazing breast cancer magazine called Wildfire. We encourage women to share their stories as a therapeutic outlet & because it may help other survivors, fighters, and thrivers.
Instagram - @and.she.thrived