Breast Cancer Student- Carolina
Age at Enrollment:
Triple Positive Breast Cancer
What were the primary symptoms you experienced prior to diagnosis?
I was tired but I just though it was due to work.
What symptom(s) lead you to go to the doctor?
I accidentally felt a lump on my right breast one night when putting on lotion.
Neoadjuvant Chemotherapy (10 rounds), then Lumpectomy, 30 rounds of radiation and targeted therapy since I was diagnosed with Triple Positive BC.
How did you respond when you heard the words “You have cancer”?
I think I was numb, like I just knew since the day I went in for an ultrasound. The tech made this face which was all I needed to know without hearing any words! When I got the call, I was just like “OK! I’m ready! When can we start?”.
What has been your hardest moment(s) since your diagnosis? How have you moved forward through them?
Having to tell people (that I have cancer). I have used social media to tell my friends instead of having to call them. I think this is because I really thought that since I tested negative for the BRCA1&2 genes and had checkups since I was 30 because of my mom’s own breast cancer history I was in the clear.
What has been your biggest accomplishment since your diagnosis?
Realizing that you can’t control everything around you and your never truly prepared no matter how much you try, like Cancer. I thought I had it checked and because I was not a gene carrier, I was good to go.
What advice would you give to someone who is newly diagnosed? What advice would you tell them to ignore? What advice would you give to the caregivers?
Take it one day at of time and laugh as much as possible!
How did your family and friends respond?
They have been amazing through this journey!
When you feel overwhelmed or anxious, what do you do for relief?
I read a lot and try to watch funny videos. I think laughter has been the best anxiety remedy for me.
Have you created any meaning out of this experience?
Yes, I think its definitely helped me slowed down! I was always an “on the run” type of girl! “Work, work, work!” was my motto and I felt like I lived in the fast lane and now I’m learning to take things easy and enjoying life one day at a time.
How did/do you find joy during this experience?
Spending time with my family and making them part of my journey-especially my kids!