The minute I found the lump, I knew what it was. I have mammograms regularly every year. I had a mammogram in January 2012 and then found it myself the following July. I went to my gynecologist right away and she didn’t think it was anything to worry about but ordered an ultrasound anyway to be sure. I was diagnosed with lobular carcinoma and had surgery in August and started chemotherapy in September. I had eight treatments over 16 weeks and then 34 radiation treatments ending in March 2013. Now I’m on anti-hormone therapy for five years.
My husband Rick was great support. I know it was hard for him to see me going through it. One of the hardest things was telling the kids, even though they are grown. Cards and prayers from the congregation at my church really increased my faith and my strength. The pastor came when I was having surgery and I can’t say enough about how much that helped. For every test I was scared but then I would remember that God’s in control and that helped me get through it.
You have to trust your doctors and have confidence in them. I was treated at the Breast Center at Lehigh Valley Hospital and they gave me a brochure about the PBCC. I ordered one of the Friends Like Me care packages and loved how informative it was! It helped too to know that I wasn’t the only one and that there was hope.
At the time of my diagnosis, a friend’s daughter was getting married. The bride knows I love to bake and she asked me to make the favors, blue nonpareils to match the bridesmaids’ gowns. While I was doing that, I got the idea to make pink ones for breast cancer awareness. As I was going through chemo, I started making the pink ones and taking them to various businesses in the Emmaus area. Doing that gave me something to do and to focus on. All the money raised by selling them goes to the PBCC. The first year we raised $1,000 and then $1,300 the next year. This October will be my third year and I will have a stand at a craft show in Leesport.
You never believe it until it happens. I worked with cancer patients and I remember thinking at the time now I am one of them. Sometimes I worry but I have a very good prognosis and I know whatever happens I will be able to handle it.