Breast Cancer was definitely not the road I was expecting to travel this year or really EVER. I always knew with family history there was a possibility but you never really believe it will happen to you. Well it has and I WILL conquer and beat this nasty cancer. On June 7, 2016, age 40, I was diagnosed with Stage IIB Invasive Ductal Carcinoma (HER2 + ER + & PR -). Here I am, a wife and full-time working mom, mother of a 8 year old girl and a 3 year old boy, and doing my side business. I do not have time for this!! Let’s get this show on the road. Doctors and Nurses both said….”One step at a time Jenn, this will take time”. I am FAR from a patient person. Never once did I fear I wouldn’t beat this and have yet to think that. I will and that is the only answer I except. I remember sitting there when they told me and looking at her and saying….”OK, so now what”. My Oncologist reassured me as well that I will win. 😉 My treatment began immediately. Surgery to have Power Port placed and started chemotherapy soon after. I just completed round 5 of 6 TCHP regiment on September 19th (my son’s 3rd birthday) and will continue with Herceptin for the following 9 months.
October 10th is my scheduled last chemotherapy treatment and I can expect surgery within 6 weeks following. More than likely radiation as well. I am choosing a double mastectomy/reconstruction not only for my piece of mind, but all the things I have read. It’s just the best choice for me. Losing my hair and my breasts and all the other insane things that have/will come along with this journey so far have not been and won’t be fun, but they could have been much worse. Not sure how else to say it, it does suck BUT I will beat it and I will come out stronger in the end. Through this journey, many things have become very clear and I know what I need to do when this is all over. Time for change in many areas of my life. Life is too short to take anyone or anything for granted.
After being diagnosed, I needed people to talk to who have been where I was. I got on a discussion board and soon a wonderful fellow survivor/Cancer kicker created a private Facebook page. The ladies in there have been absolutely amazing to visit with and to be there for encouragement and support. During my chemo treatments there was a gentleman and his wife whom I adored by end of the 1st treatment. He was with me through my 5th chemo journey and I was with him through his last chemo journey. Although I will miss their companionship during my last chemo, I couldn’t be happier that he is DONE. It’s amazing the people you come across and become friends with on such a wild ride. They will always hold a special place in my heart. My Neulasta buddy!! Ha!! Many people comment how strong I have been throughout this thing I call a crazy mess. Believe me, under this cover there is fear I just refuse to let it consume me or beat me. I truly believe a positive attitude, not telling myself I am sick, not allowing my life to change all that much has been my strength. The biggest part of my strength has come from GOD and all of my family and friends who has supported me. The overwhelming amount of love has been my greatest strength. Knowing people truly care and are truly there for me.
I signed up for the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure (Greater Amarillo). This has been an AWESOME ride and I have made it my mission to continue this for years to come. Helping others get the help they need and spreading the word to women and men. This is no joke!! My amazing (OBGYN) doctor of 20+ years started me young on mammograms. Luckily, because within a years’ time I was already Stage IIB and I cringe thinking ……what if I hadn’t been going. Cringe thinking of all the people who don’t take the time to have their annual exams. It is VERY important people. You couldn’t feel my tumors from the outside. The largest was 2.7 and you still couldn’t so you have to be proactive before it goes too far. I had 3 spots biopsied all came back cancer and more found on MRI. Take care of yourselves, get your annual physicals/exams and be conscious of what your body is telling you. #jenns_gotthis