At 34, newly divorced and starting a new job, I felt a pea size lump in my left breast. I knew this was unusual so I went to the doctor. It was cancer and so I started on this new life as a cancer patient. After a lumpectomy, chemo and radiation, and reconstruction, I recovered and was able to run a few half marathons, play ice hockey and get on with my very active life. In October of 2012 I knew I was in trouble again. My left boob was full of tumors and side I had no lymph nodes remaining, it was unable to spread quickly. I dodged that bullet. I had a mastectomy, chemo and a DIEP (Cool surgery), While i was still recovering from that VERY long year, I found another lump in my RIGHT lymph nodes. It was another 3X neg. tumor that had not spread out of the area(we think). I headed out of Anchorage AK to MD Anderson in Houston, thinking this was stage 4 and I was a goner. Not the case. The pathology of all three of my cancer's came back as all different sub-types of 3x neg. breast cancer. Over the last 8 months, I have had three different chemos,( they all were awful). I have experienced every horrible side effect, but lived through them thanks to modern medication. The tumor shrank from 2.1 cm to 5mm. Surgery went well, removing all the cancer he could see and now I am preparing to leave my husband and teenage girls for two months. MD Anderson offers me the most innovative and cutting edge radiation therapy.
I am not a "survivor" or a" victim". I am a thriver and a victim of nothing. Preparation and timing are essential to living a long life. Nothing happens for a reason. Things happen and you get to choose how to handle the situation. Are you going to lay down and give up? Are you going to be a miserable victim? Are you going to face the facts and fight and endure? Your choice. These are the things I think of everyday. Wishing you a speedy recovery and that you never have to have another chemo! Suzy Hyde