Ilene Matises-Fogelman

Living with MBC


In 2013, I was diagnosed with early stage 2b breast cancer. Lumpectomy. 33 rounds of radiation and 3 years (and counting) of tamoxifen and I thought I was on my way to living the rest of my life cancer free. May 2016 during a routine mammogram another lump was discovered in the same breast as the first one. I thought easy peasy we will just deal with it and I’ll be done. Nope. PETscan, CTscan and bone scans showed some areas of concern. Turns out the cancer had metastasized to the plural lining of my lung and a small spot on my shoulder. Sept 7, 2016, it was confirmed via surgery that the concern was indeed the breast cancer and I jumped to Stage IV. Since Nov 2016 I have been considered NEAD and hoping that I stay that way. In the meantime, I am making memories with my husband and 8 year old daughter. I am trying to make every moment count. I don’t consider myself a survivor, as I know unless there is a cure, I will not survive metastatic breast cancer. I am a thriver. A lifer. More importantly I am a mother just trying to live my life the best I can.