In April 2016 at the age of 47, I was diagnosed with stage 2B breast cancer. I accidentally felt a lump while taking a shower. This happened 9 days after my perfectly normal annual mammogram and the day after my annual well, female exam. It literally appeared overnight. Over the next month I had more tests, only to find out it was already in one lymph node.
I had 8 cycles of chemo, a double mastectomy and 25 radiation treatments, along with a full year of Herceptin infusions. I’m currently 3 1/2 years into a 5 year regimen of Letrozole — hot flashes for days!! The side effects are mild, but they are there.
One unusual thing to come out of my cancer diagnosis was finding out I have Celiac disease. Since I’m a silent Celiac and don’t have the usual symptoms, I had no idea. After I finished cancer treatment, my blood work was still not normal, lots of vitamin deficiencies so my oncologist wanted to investigate and that’s what was found. So in a round about way, cancer possibly saved my life. Either way, I’m just happy to be alive and I’m enjoying just living life!
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.