Darci Baird, Bradford County
Cancer is not a death sentence. I’ve learned that. The word is scary but it’s the word for a disease that can be beaten. You just have to face it, figure out your treatment plan, and go about the business of kicking cancer to the curb.
I was 49 years old in July 2009 when a routine mammogram found my breast cancer. I had a lumpectomy and then radiation and am now finishing up. This is my fifth year of taking Anastrazole (Arimidex).
I always thought I was strong but I learned just how strong I was, and how strong my faith was. I am 100% positive that I had the help of Christ to get me through breast cancer. I wouldn’t have come through without the prayers of so many people.
During one of my many office visits after diagnosis I saw some literature and I asked Helen Harshbarger if she thought the PBCC was worth my time. Helen said the PBCC is absolutely the grassroots organization you want to become connected to. I ordered a Friends Like Me care package for myself and getting all that wonderful information really solidified all the good things that Helen had told me.
Two years ago Robert Packer Hospital and Guthrie Healthcare were getting ready to host “67 Women 67 Counties: Facing Breast Cancer in Pennsylvania” and they asked me to help with that. That was a great experience.
About that time the movie Iron Lady about Margaret Thatcher came out. We decided to do a fundraiser with the theme that anyone who has survived breast cancer is an iron lady, so we put together the Iron Ladies Night Out. We had a commemorative stone inscribed for iron ladies past and present and laid it in front of the theatre in Sayre. We had the help and support of Marge Ross who runs the theatre and is a force of nature with a tremendous heart. I’m fortunate to live in such an awesome community.
My husband John was there by my side with whatever I needed, and my kids were too. Amanda and Tim are young adults but it’s still a shock when mom gets sick. My brother cooked for me even after I was back on my feet. Cancer can make the people around you feel so powerless, and I think that made him feel like he could do something.
My granddaughter Ava Rose Baird turned two years old in May and she is one of the reasons I fight so hard to help find a cure for breast cancer.