My journey started in April 2015 at 41 years old with a diagnosis of IDC Breast Cancer Stage IIB, Est +, & BRCA 2 POSITIVE. I had zero symptoms, just a cautious doctor. My grandma, God bless her, fought and beat breast cancer twice. I never realized what she went through. She was so strong and kept it to herself mostly.
First thing my husband did was talk with me and my 14-year-old daughter and assure her that we are a team through this no matter what. On May 26, I had my bilateral mastectomy and spacers put in. Zero lymph nodes were affected. My employer of 5 years boasted support and sent a computer home so that during treatment it would help with absences and only when I felt up to it.
In July, I was released to do light work from home. That’s when my employer informed me it was unacceptable and said some other ugly things. So I returned to my office in August. It was hard, and I couldn’t always be there. At the end of August, due to absences because of treatments, I was given an ultimatum to quit. They’d give me temp work for a few months at a third of the pay, and at the end I could reapply if something was available, or I could continue, and they would fire me. Of course I told them to fire me. I continued to work. They kept up with the ugly emails and treatment. I quit last week. I believe I am better off. The stress of worrying what they would say or do next was hard. They are an employer that boasts family and employee loyalty, and they failed.
I had to start Neulasta halfway through treatments. Today was my last fill on spacers, and tomorrow is my last treatment. I will have reconstruction and a hysterectomy in about three weeks at the same time. Due to the BRCA 2, I worry for my daughter. But she has a wonderful doctor who has started checking her and working on living healthy, not dwelling on it or the negative. My daughter is a brave and strong young lady.
I will say that the best thing out of this all is the prayer and support from my husband and daughter and all my friends and family. I was surprised by the concern and support from them all and am absolutely grateful to them. I pray God blesses them all for all that they have done for me.
The informational content of this article is intended to convey a personal experience and, because every person’s experience is unique, should not be relied upon as a substitute for professional healthcare advice.
This story is intended to convey a personal experience and, because every person’s experience is unique, should not be relied upon as a substitute for professional healthcare advice.