While getting ready to fall asleep one night, I found a lump on my left breast. Immediately the next morning I called my doctor and asked for an appointment. He was able to get me into his office within hours. After an unsuccessful needle aspiration (he thought it was possibly a cyst) he referred me to a breast surgeon. He has been my doctor for over 10 years, when he suggested I go to a surgeon he didn’t look me in the eyes but rather at the ground. That’s when I knew I had cancer. I contacted the surgeon who did a mammogram, ultrasound, and biopsy on the same day. Three days later I received the phone call confirming what my heart already knew. I had Stage 2 Luminal B Breast Cancer.
I was scheduled for 6 rounds of chemo, after the third round I felt the lump was not shrinking. An ultrasound confirmed the tumor was not shrinking as it should. Within a few days I had a mastectomy and a complete Lymph Node clean out. Pathology reports came back indicating I had one tumor with two types of Breast Cancer. Yes, you read that right – TWO cancers; Luminal B Breast cancer and Triple Negative Breast Cancer. The chemo successfully killed the Luminal B, but not the Triple Negative. I am lucky, all Lymph Nodes are clear and the tumor was contained. Since my surgeon removed everything, my body is currently cancer free. Those words are music to my ears.
All along I have been blessed with love and support from family, friends and even strangers. When I started on this cancer journey, I asked my husband to snap photos along the way. Although I never want to battle this beast again, it is a part of my life and I wanted memories of it. A friend told me about Turning Heads, the moment I saw their beautiful work, I knew I wanted to participate. Stacy, Michael, and Jane worked their magic and allowed me to forget about being a cancer patient and helped me to feel beautiful once again, for that I am forever grateful.
Photography by Stacy Jacob Photography, Makeup by Michael Strause, Styling by Jane Raimondi