My family moved to Florida in August 2012, and four months later I was diagnosed with cancer. I felt a lump in my breast and went to my doctor who referred me to a breast specialist. The mammogram was negative and both the MRI and ultrasound were inconclusive. But a biopsy proved the lump to be cancerous.
It was recommended by my oncologist to undergo 16 rounds of chemotherapy and 28 treatments of radiation. During that treatment, my family was extremely helpful and my husband has been incredibly supportive. My siblings live in the New York area and they, along with a special Aunt, alternated flying in for a weekend or a week during my first four heavy treatments. My mother-in-law stayed with me for a month and my dad, who is 86 years old, also helped out.
Everyone was extremely concerned, but staying positive was the key. We were really concerned about the children (ages 7 and 11), but with us staying so positive, it has helped them deal with everything remarkably well. Having my family around, along with all the great doctors and nurses at Cleveland Clinic Florida, made a world of difference. Also, knowing they were able to remove all the cancer was tremendously uplifting.
The medical team at Cleveland Clinic was terrific and I couldn’t be more grateful for all they did for me. They all were attentive, caring, supportive and informative. Everyone worked with me to help me get through the tough times. During my journey, I have also met many cancer survivors that have been my role models.
Without them and my family, it would have been very difficult to stay positive. And that’s my message to anyone who has been recently diagnosed. Stay strong and keep a positive attitude. There is an end, and this event in your life will be behind you before you know it.
One of the most important lessons I’ve learned is to not let the little things bother you. Everything happens for a reason (not sure what that “reason” is), but I believe going through this has made me and my family stronger and closer.